Saturday, June 12, 2010

Freedom for Iran: One year since...

It has been one year since the Green Movement came out in opposition to the rigged re-election of M. Ahmadinejad and regime. A year filled with faint hope and tragic losses for the Opposition.

Things are no better today. The thugs, and the security forces of the government, are out in massive force to prevent any anniversary protests.

Somehow, in spite of that, the Green Movement remains alive. Perhaps only clinging to life, but still it goes forward.
However, in a fresh statement issued late on June 11 night, Musavi suggested a change of opposition tactics to enable dissent to continue. Vowing to “continue our peaceful methods,” he said that while the opposition “may put off its presence in one arena,” it would pursue other avenues.

Speaking to Karrubi’s website, Sahamnews, Musavi said Iran's rulers had turned away from the goals of the revolution and the constitution and accused them of “shutting peoples' mouths, banning the media, holding elections as we saw last year, and filling the prisons” with their opponents. But he said the opposition movement must stay “alive as [the rulers] will be afraid of this very thing.”

Rather than demonstrations, he said the opposition must use different methods to spread its message, including “real and virtual social networks.” “We expand films shot on cell phones...are our best instruments. They act like an army," he said.
That's all they have for now.

But, going back to the BBC article first cited,
Mr Ahmadinejad's government continues to be tellingly nervous about its hold on power. It has been steadily tightening its grip on the media and the internet, and even warning foreign exiles not to speak out.

The opposition seem to have run out of ideas. Many Iranians are now reduced to sullen acquiescence. The government's next big problem looks to be the economy: with falling oil revenues, it could be, fairly rapidly, running out of money.
Gee, that would be too bad if Ahmadinejad ran out of money. He might have to cut back on subsidies to all manner of nasty characters (Like *this*, just to pick the latest example) out to cause mayhem in the world.

I'd say this is a good start even if it is a year (years?) late and the Obama administration wants to undermine it before it even gets out of the Congress.

A Green Movement Iran might not be ideal in a realpolitik sense, but it certainly would be better in a moral sense than the Pasdaran (IRGC) rats running Iran now... and their word in negotiations might be worth something.

Hope for a Free Iran.

Help create one in any way you can.

Plan as if it won't happen.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

It is Kan

No, not Khan. Kan Naoto (N. Kan) has won the party election inside the Democratic Party of Japan and will get the nod from the lower house to form a new government for Japan.

Thing is, it looks a little bit like maybe the negotiations aren't going quite according to plan as to who gets what Ministry in the new Cabinet... That's been put off until next week.

Good going, guys.

Sure hope nothing bad happens over this weekend.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Pigeon Removal Service

That was then:
Earlier in the day, Hatoyama suggested he had no intention of stepping down as prime minister.
This is now:
Ending a turbulent eight months in office, Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama said Wednesday he will step down to take the blame for his Cabinet's plunging approval rate, brought on by funds scandals and the row over relocating a U.S. base in Okinawa.
And he's taking Ozawa Ichirou (I. Ozawa; Sec Gen of the party and political kingmaker) with him.

Not a single tear was shed on this author's part at the news.

Here are other English-language sources on what went down:

Hatoyama resigns.

Ozawa comments, before the door got slammed on his backside as well.

Oppos calls for a general election. Not going to happen, but nice try.

The BBC version of the resignation announcement.

follow-up report from Kyoudou via the AP, including Ozawa's statement of resignation.

First glance at what is to come is that Kan Naoto (N. Kan; DPM and Minister of Finance; career populist politician) will get the call to form a new Democratic Party of Japan-led naikaku (Cabinet), which would mean nothing really meaningful changes except the top unless he were to bring back out his more nationalist former-self from back when he wrote "Dai-jin" ("Government Minister"; lang. Japanese; pub. Iwanami Shoten, 1998)... but there is always a possibility that something good will come of this. They could go back to letting Maehara Seiji (S. Maehara) run things. He has been "pigeon-holed" in the Land Ministry portfolio and while he also has the Northern Territories and Okinawa portfolio, he's been cut out of most of the matters problematic to both issues there. Getting him back in charge, or at least with the Defense or Foreign portfolios, would be a step toward government-by-ability by the DPJ... yeah, I know, faint hope. Most of the rest of the possible candidates are even weaker tea than N. Kan, so sadly no hope there.

Meanwhile, in the depths of deepest, darkest Opposition-land...

((sounds of further infighting))

... um, can you get back to us when we have *a political party* again?




The pigeon references are intentional: the family name "Hatoyama" means "Pigeon Mountain". At least the first part proved apt.