ANALYSIS: What the huge wave of "preventive arrests" of journalists tells us


by FG

1. The regime plans another Big Lie and hopes to conceal it.

Any limited trace of fairness in the regime's elections disappeared forever after refomists won the Majlis in 2000 and the presidency in 2001. Khamenei realized that a pent-up desire for change would only increase with each passing year. He concluded that, one way or another, elections had to be rigged. Worse yet, the degree of rigging required to thwart essential changes could only increase.

Like everyone else, Khamenei knows what he can't admit publicly--that turnout this time will be atrociously low. What else should he have expected after the Big Lie of 2009 Big Lie ("Ahmadinejad "won)?" The Big Lie of 2012 will be, "Iranians turned out in overwhelming numbers showing their support for the regime and public respect for its leader."

Khamenei hopes silencing any independent journalists in advance will hide what is too obvious to conceal. In the old days, that trick might have worked but after the Communications Revolution it has no chance of success. The truth will out, both inside and outside his borders. Thus one "pie in the face" (a horrific turnout) will be supplemented by another (widespread mockery of coverup attempts. In every way possible Election Day promises to be humiliating, even more so than in 2009.

2. With "election rigging" under consideration as a last resort,Khamenei doesn't want independent journalists raising embarassing questions.

If all else fails, Khamenei won't hestitate to rig elections once again. The only thing different in 2012 will be a new target (Ahmadinejad's faction) replacing reformers. Call it "poetic justice." Experts say Ahmadinejad is likely to do well where turnout will likely be biggest: rural areas. Supposedly Khamenei's faction supposedly will do better in the cities even if that's where boycotting reformers are concentrated. The JPO (the pro-Khamenei slate) fears it may be clobbered, just as reformists stomped Ahmadinejad in 2009. True to form, he'll relyon what "worked" in 2009. After cheating on a superhuman scale, he will endorse an alleged JPO "victory."

3. Expecting trouble afterwards, Khamenei does not want independent journalists arount to report on it.

I doubt Ahmadinejad's faction will accept the alleged "results" quietly. Khamenei surely has the same doubts. Should the proclaimed "losers" launch protest demonstrations, everyone is likely to join in. That includes former greens, anyone else disgusted two years of police state tactics with no end in sight. and, most importantly, any workers, middle class and merchants fed up with the regime's economic incompetence and corruption and boomerangs caused by its covert schemes abroad.

As I write, Khamenei is "prepping" its security forces--handing out clubs, rifles and tear gas for use against Iran's people. If they don't suffice, you will see tanks, artillery and even helicopters. Women and children will not be spared. Since most troops have friends, families and relatives on the other side and often share the people's grievances they may be no more reliable than Syrian forces.

If demonstrations become as large, persistent and widespread as in Syria, the regime will face two major risks that are much lower for Assad. First, outsiders will be less likely to restrain themselves if Iranians issue the same "Save Us!" appeals we see in Syria. Iran is more suitable for a low fly zone, while neighbors and the West have much greater motivation having suffered from so many covert schemes directed from Tehran. Secondly, minority attitudes in Iran are the reverse of minority attitudes in Syria. In Iran, years of persecution has made them enemies. In Syria,minorities tend to support Assad for fear of Islamist radicals.


more from FG

U.S. Navy to test 32 megajoule EM Railgun in the coming weeks

by FG on

The mullocracy likes to puff up every little exercise and every missle launch.   Let's see the regime duplicate this which has substantial potential for pulverizing bad guys.  

Note the test will be "within the next few weeks."   If it is successful, I'll give you three guesses where the gun will be headed shortly thereafter.

U.S. Navy to test 32 megajoule EM Railgun in the coming weeks



Iran’s official news agency reported Thursday that the navy has added two more domestically built light submarines to its fleet.



Any Iranian who doesn't absolutely adore this regime--as distinct from its bribed mouthpieces and citizen-mercnaries--would be an utter fool to sign up for naval duty and submarine duty especially.   In WW II, 95% of German crews perished.   Anti-submarine capapabilities of the US navy are quite advanced.  I'd be surprised if even a single crew member survives in case Iran chooses to pick a naval fight.








To D: Russians can't save Khamenei in above scenario

by FG on

If Iranians revolt en mass and on a scale similar to Syria, with massive defections as well, and if their appeals to help are honored, what can the Russians do except protest?   Politically the Russians stand to lose far more than they'd gain in taking on both Iran's Arab neighbors and the West.  What sense does it make to support a dead duck against such a combination?  Also imagine their subsequent political position in the Middle East (destroyed beyond repair).

Since almost no external ground troops would be involved, the Russian military would have to fight and kill thousands of Iranians.  All ground action would be against the Iranian people. That won't play well at home where the regime is already in trouble and that's likely to get worse fast when spring comes.   They'll have enough on their plate at home, believe me.  You may have lost sight of the latter.  Even without such constraints, ground intervention would be expensive, unwieldy and unpopular--a super morass.

If Arab or western GROUND forces responded to an appeal from Iranians it would be different.  Iranians must handle that part without foreign troops except possibly for special forces (Seals, Green Berets).  Any other western aid would consist of providing supplies and training, strategy and tactics suggestions and eliminating the regime's ability to attack Iranians via helicopter and aircraft which will encourage defection of heavy armor.  

Remaining regime tanks or artillery engaged in any shelling of civilians will likely be elminated by laser-guided bombs or by hellfire missiles from drones.  Expect to see lots of flying turrets or fiery steel tombs.  I doubt any pro-regime troops will want to be anywhere near such equipment.




Thanks FG

by divaneh on

Thanks for your good analysis but I think you have missed the Russian role in all this, especially if a Western intervention is considered.


What happens when a staunch supporter turns on Khamenei?

by FG on

Tabarzadi, a man who lost two brothers in the Iran-Iraq war, came home as a staunch Khamenei supporter.  He is believed to be the man who first refered to Khamenei as "Iman."  Find out what happened to him after he changed his views. Meanwhile don't miss the comment below from Mark, a regime stooge who relies on typical deception, combining argument by analogy with the fallacy of degree.  Both are formal logical fallacies.  At the same time he rebus a position no one but an idiot would take, in talking of how "No One Is Perfect."  Did anyone ever suggest a perfect system existed? LINK:





Former Soviet leader warns of more protests if the Russian prime minister does not 'change the way things are'

If only Assad, Khamenei, Khaddafi and others had Gorbachev's common sense, dignity and moral courage, including a willingness to surrender power gradefully rather that destroy his country in an effort to stay in power against the people's will.


Polishing Putin: hacked emails suggest dirty tricks by Russian youth group.

As in Iran's case, groups are being paid to visit internet sites where they praise Putin and denigrate his enemies. 



Every day in every way, things get lousier & lousier.

by FG on


Fifty members of the Iranian opposition met in Stockholm last week to discuss the
present and future Iran, upsetting the regime.  Raja news claims--without an ounce of proof--that the opposition was USA-linked and consisted of Kurdish terrorists and "agents of sedition" engaged in an scheme to disturb Parliamentary Elections.  It sounds to me as if the regime is preparing the usual excuses for any post election crackdown.

Leading political analyst Sadegh Zibakalam predicts the turnout for the
Parliamentary election on 2 March will be high only in rural areas, while only 20% will vote in Tehran, Tabriz and Shiraz.  As I note above this would spell trouble for Khamenei's JPO faction. 

Zibakalam predicts that no faction will have total control.  Ahmadinejad's group would have the most seats (100), folloed by the Unity Front (70 to 80 seats), the Constancy Front (about 50) and and the rest for other parties.
He added that there are no "true reformists" running in the campaign.

The Guardian Council reports that it approved about 61% of all applicants (3320 out of 5395) for the upcoming elections.  I suppose that's a great way to encourage a badly needed voter turnout. 


It's interesting that the latest filtering target is Baztab Emrooz, connected with Mohsen Rezaei, the Secretary of the
Expediency Council, which has been targeted a month after its launch.  The IRCG appears to be the culprit.

Rezaei claims that he warned the governmentof the currency crisis seven months
ago, and he noted the issues of 230,000 prisoners, inflation, and unemployment.
Rezaei said a Government and Parliament must be elected who fulfil the
Revolution's goals.

Ayatollah Dastgheib is right on target in an open letter to Mohammad Momen of the Guardian
Council, Ayatollah Mahdavi Kani of the Assembly of Experts, and former President
Hashemi Rafsanjani. Explaining why he has not criticised the Government and
Supreme Leader in the Assembly of Experts, Dastgheib asks: "Is there any security for those who
speak out truthfully in this land?"

Meanwhile Rafsanjani, who has become more outspoken of late, has taken a shot at Khamenei's xenophobic policies and its cost to Iran. Last Friday Khaenei warned, "We should not fall for
smiles and deceptions of the enemy."   However, Rafsanjani, meeting with a group of intellectuals, said America can lower the "wall of distrust" based on mutual respect and fair and friendly relations. 


Kalemeh, citing ISNA, claims that the price for chicken has risen 15 to 30% in Tehran, with reserves of frozen chicken being distributed.

Khabar Online denies problems with grain and rice supplies,
listing recent shipments of imports.  However in the last two weeks, 10 ships laden with 400,000 tonnes of grain have not
been able to off-load because of payment problems, and Indian companies have
said that Tehran has defaulted on payment for basmati rice.

Meanwhile, the regime hopes that India can help Iran keep oil experts at current levels but experts doubt it.  Trevor House, a partner in New York based econonic-research firm Rhodium Group has this to say, "I don't think India is insulated at all from sanctions.  So the question is just how lng Tehran is willing to sell on credit and how long Tehran can go without hard currency."

An economic analysis by Ali Chenar contains an interesting passage: "What does all this mean to the average Iranian?  Vahid, a 28-year-old engineer who works as a project manager in south Tehran, sums up the public mood: "There is no hope the government can do anything.  THE ECONOMY IS FINISHED!"