Friday, July 24, 2009

Iran election and Ahmadinejad failed promises


Joe Klein, Time magazine columnist on his 10-day trip to Iran to cover presidential election has relatively fair view about election fixation and aftermath crisis.



In the article Joe wrote:
It has to be assumed that the Iranian presidential election was rigged, but it is impossible to know how heavily the government's thumb rested on the scales. It is entirely possible that Ahmadinejad would have won anyway, but narrowly, perhaps with less than 50% of the vote, setting up a runoff election he might have lost as the other candidates united against him. It is possible that his government, perhaps acting in concert with Supreme Leader Ayatullah Ali Khamenei, decided to take no chances.

But I do disagree with him on:
The President was, without question, the best politician in the race. His debates against the two reformers, Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi, were routs.

To be fair Mohsen Rezaee was the winner in presidential debate, who really can disagree with that? But Rezaee a conservative with extensive background in Revolutionary Guards couldn’t get Iranians who urging for reforms in society and economy.

There is no doubt that Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi belong to older generations of Islamic revolution and they definitely appeared poor in debates, specially Karroubi. Mousavi picked up some hints in the middle and changed his style a bit but at the end, all of their shortcomings wouldn’t matter much for people who were fed up with Ahmadinejad lies.

On the other side, Ahmadinejad made deadly mistakes and lied during debates which raged people. He lied about inflation and his aggressive personal attacks during debates ignited people, even apathetic ones to get to vote against him. He was already president of failed promises. Back then on June 20, 2003 presidential election, Ahmadinejad promised people to stop crackdown on dress-code and bring oil wealth on Iranian tables. He clearly went against his promises; some would call him president of failed promises.

People could deal a bit with skyrocketing inflation and failing economy but they couldn’t take notorious crackdown on dress code which mostly targeted women as the repressive regime would thought they would. It was the unforgiving mistake on his failed promise. So people who chose to go against Ahamdinejad they were made up their minds long time before presidential debates on June 03, 2009. I would say the most offenders were women (in some cases men) and any presidential candidate in Iran who ignores to take into account women is a looser.

Women are half of Iranian population.

Also I recommend "Not the Change They Expected" from Robert Dreyfuss on The Nation.

* Above video is recorded sometime before June 18, 2009 that also you can watch on Time website.

7 comments:

  1. There's no real evidence of election fraud in Iran. The blogger at IranAffairs.com has collected each claim and counterclaim. None of the claims of election fraud in Iran standup to scrutiny. See IranAffairs.com

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  2. Also it was AHmadinejad who said publicly that he favored allowing women to attend football games -- and he was overruled by the mullahs.

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  3. Here are a few of the suspicious findings I have come across:

    1. The election turnout was huge, 85 percent, indicating a vote for change by most election experts.
    2. Despite the high turnout and a manual tallying process, the election results were announced one hour after the polls closed, instead of within days.
    3. Even though opinion polls taken at the beginning of the short campaign season showed Ahmadinejad ahead, this lead might have eroded quickly as the campaigning got underway. Iran's unusually short campaign season makes it hard to assess the dynamics of opinion -- making elections very risky for the incumbents.
    4. Each of the seven preliminary return announcements by the Interior Ministry showed Ahmadinejad's lead to be by the same percent, something that is statistically improbable.
    5. Fifty voting districts showed more votes than the number of registered voters.
    6. Mousavi lost in his own home town district. The same is true for the other losing candidates.
    7. Photographs show that many of the ballots were not folded, a requirement of the voting process, indicating that they were filled in after-the-fact.
    8. Statisticians have calculated that the "spoiled ballot" count was not proportional in many of the disputed Ahmadinejad tallies, an indication of ballot stuffing.
    9. Another statistical analysis, called Benford's Law, determined that last two digits of the election tally numbers were not random, as would be expected. There were too few "5's" and too many "7's". This is an indication that the tally numbers were faked.
    10. Comparing the 2005 election with the 2009 election, Ahmadinejad captured districts where he was clearly not supported in 2005.
    11. The number of "mobile centers" was increased dramatically from 2,000 to 14,000 allowing more ballot boxes to be used unobserved by monitors of the competing parties.
    12. [Hassan, an Iranian economist with a PhD, told Juan Cole's website] "Unofficial but widespread news that the leader Khamenei told the big players that he cannot take the humiliation of a defeated ally at the end of his life (he is 80 years old) and ordered the numbers."

    There may well be other suspicious election tally findings. The important thing is to determine whether these were inconsequential "anomalies" or if there were indications of outright "fraud" capable of generating a 10 million vote victory by Ahmadinejad. So far I have not read any scholarly analysis addressing the issue of whether the anomalies were inconsequential or not. If any reader knows of such a report, please provide the link.

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  4. The blogger that you mentioned can't be more wrong.

    "Also it was AHmadinejad who said publicly that he favored allowing women to attend football games -- and he was overruled by the mullahs."

    It is half true but you have to take a look at other side of story too. Sure, Ahmadinejad favored allowing women to attend soccer game but at the same time there was extensive crackdown on dress-code on streets! Ahmadinejad is the man of contradictions and false promises!

    “Even though opinion polls taken at the beginning of the short campaign season showed Ahmadinejad ahead”

    Which polls? The infamous terror free tomorrow poll?!


    "There may well be other suspicious election tally findings. The important thing is to determine whether these were inconsequential "anomalies" or if there were indications of outright "fraud" capable of generating a 10 million vote victory by Ahmadinejad. So far I have not read any scholarly analysis addressing the issue of whether the anomalies were inconsequential or not. If any reader knows of such a report, please provide the link."


    These so-called anomalies, they are in fact indications. There are strong indications too that neither you addressed nor the blogger that you mentioned.

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  5. Anonymous-
    Had you bothered to actually visit IranAffairs.com and read the comparisons between the claims and counterclaims of fraud, you'd see that Benfords Law is not a valid indicator of fraud in elections -- ACCORDING TO THE CARTER CENTER.

    I don't have the time to go thru each of your other claims but lets start with that one.

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  6. One more:
    Fifty voting districts showed more votes than eligible voters because of the very simple fact that in Iran, people are not required to vote in location that they were born in. This is not quite usual and had happened in previous elections. Again, had you bothered to read IranAffairs.com you'd see that.

    Same thing goes for the "unfolded ballots" claim.

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  7. Yeah I visited the site; it has nothing new to offer. I often read and heard same counter-claims from Ahmadinejad camp.

    Seriously how can you believe in this? Don’t you see people are giving their lives and asking for their votes? What evidence more than that you need? If Ahmadinejad would won the election fairly over 63 percent they wouldn’t mind to recount votes and match with IDs.

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