Iran’s rigged presidential election of June 12, 2009, has given rise to a very odd phenomenon. Some supposedly leftists and progressives in America have adopted the view that the Iranian election was not rigged. They believe that the Iranian reformists have not been honest about the election (they say the reformists knew they would lose). They allege that the demonstrations in Iran against the rigged election are mostly the work of Western intelligence agencies stirring up trouble. In taking such a position, these so-called leftists and progressives have firmly sided with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
As someone on the left side of the political spectrum, who believes in a progressive and enlightened interpretation of Islamic and Shia teachings, the author feels deeply embarrassed by such proclamations from so-called leftists, some of whom do not know the first thing about Iran and Iranians, yet speak about developments there with such absolute certainty. There are those who believe that with Ahmadinejad, Iranians have gotten exactly what they deserve. And there are others still who subscribe to odd and far-fetched conspiracy theories. They see a plot hatched by Western intelligence agencies (and now even the reformists), behind everything that happens. While such intrigues do exist in some cases, the present situation in Iran does not appear to be one of them. At the very least, there is no concrete evidence for it.
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