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Name: Antony Loewenstein
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Sunday, June 26, 2005

Looking ahead

Iran has a new President. Ultra-conservative Tehran mayor Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is likely to inflame relations between the West and Iran. Vote-rigging has been alleged.

Iranian born Hossein Derakhshan, currently living in Canada, blogs about the likely changes to Iranian society. Suffice to say, he is less than optimistic about the flowering of democracy in his birth country and fears a greater crack-down on the country's barely functioning freedoms.

Global Voices gathers a round-up of Iranian blog reaction.


Anonymous Reza SHAB! Pahlavi said...

Well, is this a good thing or a bad thing, Ant? I mean, I'm still quietly long-term optimistic for Persia and the Persians, but I can't tell if your comment about 'inflame[d] tensions between the West and Iran' is meant as a good thing or not -- presumably Western rationality is better than medieval clericalism, and better tension than appeasement/co-existence with a benighted theocracy that oppresses its people and harbours nuclear ambitions?

Sunday, June 26, 2005 4:32:00 pm  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

Worsened relations between Iran and the West could be a good thing or bad...I most certainly do not want a hardline clerical administration in Tehran, though if that's the will of the people...
As for nuclear ambitions, again, it's not ideal, BUT, the US, israel et al truly cannot speak on this matter with any authority due to their arsenal and continued profileration.
Rocky years ahead, I suspect....

Sunday, June 26, 2005 4:59:00 pm  
Blogger Iqbal Khaldun said...

The election result is definitely a disappointment for progressive outside observers. But, like most social phenomena, it's difficult to ascertain with much precision what will happen now. Some commentators (in the Middle East) have argued that the momentum behind the reform movement is too strong to completely reverse. I hope's that's true.

Difficult times ahead, eg:

Monday, June 27, 2005 9:49:00 pm  
Anonymous doylie said...

Washington seemed almost please with this outcome. Some would suggest that, with further wars planned down the track, the neo-cons would welcome an escalation in Iran-US tensions as a pretext for armed conflict. I am no fan of conspiracy theories, but this isn't too far fetched.

Wednesday, June 29, 2005 1:03:00 am  

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