Friday, June 19, 2009

Broadcasting in Iran: A Tale of Two Speeches

Today, one week after the disputed Iranian elections sparked the largest street protests in the country's history, Supreme Ayatollah Ali Khamenei addressed the Iranian people in a speech that urged them to accept Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's victory. Khamenei told Iranians, "If there is any bloodshed, leaders of the protests will be held directly responsible." The speech was broadcast on national television.

Yesterday, in a speech before throngs of silent protesters in the streets of Iran, challenger Mir Hossein Mousavi told supporters they must stand up against corruption. Yet due to the Iranian Governments crack-downs on foreign media, this speech received no airtime, inside or outside of Iran. The only clip we've see of it on YouTube lasts just 20 seconds.

See the two clips of the speeches below, side by side. The contrast is striking.

Yet in a sign of the complicated relationship between politics and religion in Iran, Mousavi himself has called off all Friday protests in honor of Khamenei and his speech to the nation. Demonstrators have vowed to resume protests on Saturday, according to the BBC.


Chris R said...

I work for Iranians and they are very decent people. They left Iran because they know their Government is corrupt and evil.

I feel for their plight, and I wish the people of Iran peace and prosperity.

Ronk said...

How is it that a religious leader can threaten the people he rules over? No truly spiritual person could ever do such a thing.

He is a fraud and he is no better than the most corrupt dictators.

Anonymous said...

Although I was grateful to be able to hear it, Khameni's speech saddened me. I agreed with and appreciated most of what he was trying to say. The speech, however, was tinged--poisoned, even--with what seemed to be hatred. This to me diluded it, and the tired comments made about "the West," "foreign agents," and others don't seem very productive. The last few lines of the speech were also troubling.

Anonymous said...

i am a us citizen i have been watching this go on for a week now. i am outraged over the young women that was killed in the street for simply trying to express her voice. what as americans can i or we do? if we step in for them we are intruders if u let them go after there government we aint doing enough? some one please let me know what we can do about this? american very troubled an very concerned

Anonymous said...

Khamenei's rally is as orchestrated as Hitler's speeches. May he and all of his henchmen suffer the same fate as Adolf Hitler.

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