LAST SUNDAY, Iran hanged five Kurdish dissidents, including a 28-year-old woman, who said they had been tortured into confessing to charges of terrorism. On Monday it announced that the Iranian-Canadian journalist Maziar Bahari, who covered last year's fraudulent presidential election for Newsweek, had been sentenced in absentia to 74 lashes and 13 years in prison. This is probably just the beginning of a brutal wave of repression aimed at preventing the opposition Green Movement from rallying as next month's anniversary of the election approaches.
But on Saturday, Brazilian President Luiz Ignacio Lula da Silva will arrive in Tehran in yet another effort to "engage" the extremist clique of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Mr. Lula and Turkish President Abdullah Gul claim to be making a last effort to broker a deal with the regime that will avert another round of U.N. sanctions over its nuclear program. No one outside their own governments thinks they will succeed. And will Mr. Lula even bother to mention the blood spilled by his hosts this week? Don't hold your breath.
The faction that staged last summer's coup in Iran, backed by the Revolutionary Guards, has demonstrated over and over since then that it has no interest in accommodation with either its own people or the U.N. Security Council. It has been as unrelenting in its repression as it has been in pressing ahead with the enrichment of uranium -- for which it is now manufacturing another... >>>
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