• Lebanon: STL President Antonio Cassese, Promoter of Mojahedin-e Khalq

    On 26 January 2011, Fars News, a semi-official news agency of the Islamic Republic of Iran, reported that Antonio Cassese, the president of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon (commonly called “Hariri Tribunal”), was a legal adviser to a powerful committee to de-list Mojahedin-e Khalq (“People’s Mojahedin of Iran,” aka MEK, MKO, and PMOI) from the […]

  • Free Fariborz Rais Dana

    Fariborz Rais Dana, a left-wing economist and critic of the ongoing subsidy reform in Iran, was arrested, around midnight, on Saturday (28 Azar).  The reason for his arrest was not announced, the authorities reportedly saying only that Rais Dana was being taken for “questioning.”  Nasser Zarafshan, Rais Dana’s lawyer, says that “it’s not clear where […]

  • Unquiet on the Far Eastern Front

    From the FWIW department, a video of an anti-war demonstration of 160 people in Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan, on 5 December 2010. One of the themes of the Shinjuku demo, as shown in this poster, was (to paraphrase rather than translate): “‘China Will Invade Japan’?  Are You Nuts?” In other words, the crazy Japanese right-wingers are […]

  • The Mousavi Cartoon Censorship Affair

    A cartoon mocking “Green Wave” leader Mir-Hossein Mousavi, drawn by an Iranian cartoonist in exile Nikahang Kowsar, has reportedly been withdrawn from Rooz Online: Mir-Hossein Mousavi penning his Statement No. 300 in Khordad 1399/June 2020 Golnaz Esfandiari of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty writes that “Kowsar . . . a contributor to Rooz, confirmed the removal […]

  • Neda Agha Soltan’s Fiancé Visits Israel and Meets Shimon Peres

    Caspian Makan with Shimon Peres, 22 March 2010 Caspian Makan on Channel 2 Neda Agha Soltan’s fiancé Caspian Makan, who has been lionized in the West as an Iranian “dissident” on account of his claim that she was shot by basij, visited Israel as guest of Israel’s Channel 2.  He was given a hero’s welcome, […]

  • Mashaei Rocks the Haus

    A Tehran Bureau correspondent in Germany reports on the IranHaus celebration of “cultural dialogue” held at the International Conference Center in Hamburg on 14 March 2010, featuring Esfandiar Rahim Mashaei.  “A number of young Iranians were there,” the sight of whom the pro-Green Tehran Bureau correspondent found “very disheartening.”  According to the correspondent, Mashaei, “the […]

  • The Japanese Elections and the Left

    Decades of increasing poverty, inequality, and insecurity created a powerful backlash against the ruling coalition of the Liberal Democratic Party and Komeito in the 30 August 2009 elections, finally putting an end to Japan’s de facto one-party state.  But the backlash only benefited the social liberal Democratic Party of Japan, which increased its seats from […]

  • Mahmoud & Esfandiar’s Excellent Adventure

    Esfandiar Rahim Mashaei, whose daughter is married to a son of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, is the President’s Chief of Staff.  Mr. Mashaei is known for actions that have appalled certain conservative quarters of the Iranian political establishment, such as attending a ceremony in Turkey where women danced and hosting a ceremony in Tehran where women drumming […]

  • Lost in the Desert

    “Our community is expanding: MRZine viewers have increased in number, as have the readers of our editions published outside the United States and in languages other than English.  We sense a sharp increase in interest in our perspective and its history.   Many in our community have made use of the MR archive we put […]

  • The Age of Materialism Is Over

    “The Iranian President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, has said the age of materialism is over and the world is moving towards spiritual values” (“Ahmadinejad: Materialism Is Outdated,” Press TV 15 August 2007).  Is it? His dear imam wrote a letter to Gorbachev in 1989.  Among other things, Khomeini said, “However much the Western world may appear to […]

  • Empire and Its Fixers

    Ayub Nuri, a Kurdish man from Halabja, was a fixer for the Western media in Iraq (he is now based in New York City, having received a scholarship from Columbia).1  A fixer, in the words of Nuri, is “a journalist’s interpreter, guide, source finder and occasional lifesaver.”2  Local fixers, more or less, shape what foreign […]

  • Deir Yassin Remembered

    On 9 April 1948, the Irgun and the Stern Gang, with the approval of the Haganah, attacked Deir Yassin, a village of about 750 Palestinians, located between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.  Over 100 men, women, and children were massacred, and 53 orphaned children were left along the wall of the Old City.  The Deir Yassin […]

  • General Strike in Kashmir

    The Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front called a bandh, i.e., a general strike.  The strike began today, 6 February 2007.  The JKLF chairman Mohammed Yasin Malik said at a press conference in Srinagar: “Peace process and killing of innocent Kashmiris cannot go together, and the recent discoveries about the killings of innocent Kashmiris by Indian forces, […]

  • Boycott Japan

    Today’s Liberation Day, one of the few holidays celebrated in both North and South Koreas, so it’s a good day to start boycotting Japan. Outgoing Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi paid his respects at Tokyo’s controversial Yasukuni Shrine for war dead on Tuesday, the anniversary of his country’s World War Two surrender, a parting shot […]

  • What Do the Iranians Want?

    The priority of the Iranian people, according to the Zogby poll released on 13 July 2006,1 is economy: 41% say economy should be Iran’s top priority, a far larger proportion than those who regard nuclear capability (27%) or freedom (23%) as the most important.  The correct priority if you ask me, as the Supreme Leader […]

  • Confronting Bipartisan Empire: The Case of the Iran Freedom Support Act

    The depth and breadth of bipartisan commitment to the US empire among America’s political elite is best seen in the House vote on HR 282, the “Iran Freedom Support Act,” essentially a bill to “make U.S. sanctions against Iran under ILSA permanent unless there is a change of government in Iran”1:   YEAS NAYS PRES […]

  • Iran at the World Cup

    I watched the World Cup match of Iran and Mexico — two peoples with whom Washington is at odds! — on 11 June, with my Iranian friends (mainly men).  So I adopted Iran as my team for the day. Knowing little about Iranian footballers, before the match began, I told my friends to point out […]

  • Fanaa, Narmada, and the BJP

    Watch Fanaa if it comes to a theater near you, out of solidarity with Aamir Khan if nothing else. Apparently, the BJP is angered by Khan, the handsome star of Fanaa (who plays Rehan Qadri, a Kashmiri boy who is serving in the Indian military but secretly working for the Kashmiri independence movement — Rehan […]

  • Chechnya, Darfur, and Jewish Activism

    The Sudan Liberation Army signed a peace agreement with Khartoum.  Now, only the Justice and Equality Movement is left (Lydia Polgreen and Joel Brinkley, “Biggest Rebel Faction in Darfur Poised to Sign Peace Deal,” New York Times, 4 May 2006). Will the “30 Days for Darfur” campaign, “inspired by a meeting between Rabbi [David] Saperstein […]

  • Who Wants Peace in Darfur?

    The “Save Darfur” rally today was aired on C-Span.  The rally was small — only several thousands according to Reuters (“Thousands March to Stop Darfur Killing,” 30 April 2006).  And the crowd in attendance was overwhelmingly white.  But, boy, it was a professionally-staged photo op, with celebs, politicos, and exiles from Sudan at the podium […]