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chris Barton
chris Barton
1 year ago

The silence from the 3rd wavers in the West regrading these genuinely courageous women in Iran tells you all you need to know about them.

Peter Johnson
Peter Johnson
1 year ago
Reply to  chris Barton

I have always found it interesting that feminists who are firebrands about the failures of our society have little or nothing to say about egregious violent misogyny elsewhere. In the case of Afghanistan senior women democrats went so far as to suggest that being sold of as a wife (I.e. sex slave) at age 15 to some Taliban fighter was no big deal since they were ‘used to it.’ Similarly the complete indifference to actual slavery in the world today – as opposed to 150 years ago – or the actual murder of aboriginal people in South America for their land today – as opposed to here years ago. It tells you all you need to know about the true sincerity of activists.

Last edited 1 year ago by Peter Johnson
elaine chambers
elaine chambers
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Johnson

Peter, the reason for this, although I would say it’s not a good reason for Western feminists to give up the fight, is that whenever we Western women have stood up for other women from different violently abusive cultures, we have been attacked as racist. Fighting FGM (I’ve been fighting against this for 30 years now) the most abominable, heinous act of GBH on a child, and carried out on British children of mostly Somalian and Nigerian decent here in the UK was met with ‘you’re a racist’. We must respect their culture!!! Even if it’s a human rights abuse it seems! This defence of this most shocking abuse mostly comes from the Left. And was repeated when we spoke of ‘honour’ killings, forced and chid marriage and polygamy, all practiced with impunity in this so called modern liberal democracy. The attack has always been ‘you’re a racist’ to be criticising these lovely ethnic people and their ‘values’. What makes you think that your Western feminist values are better than these traditional and religiously supported gender based abuses, eh?

Last edited 1 year ago by elaine chambers
Philip Crowley
Philip Crowley
1 year ago

You make a very good point, Elaine. It all stems from the ‘no culture is better than another’ mantra. Dare I say, some cultures need to experience their own enlightenment, and we need to revisit and reaffirm ours. Keep up your fight, and more power to your arm.

elaine chambers
elaine chambers
1 year ago
Reply to  chris Barton

can I post a comment?

elaine chambers
elaine chambers
1 year ago

Ok. Sadly I do believe this protest will not succeed in freeing the very brave women and girls of Iran. I agree with David that the absence of a leader will lead to a shambles and it will likely disperse and disappear like the Arab Spring. However, if it did have a leader, he would be male and that already ensures that the liberty of the women and girls would not be met. How do I know this? Well I have history as evidence. Women have fought for freedom on behalf of themselves and on behalf of their men folk. Note the 1979 Revolution was fought by both women and men. It had a disastrous result for Iran’s female children. These very sick(IMO) mullahs change the marriage age for girls from 18yrs to 9yrs so institutionalising paedophilia into their Theocratic state. Kurdish women, Russian women and many others are examples of brave women rising up only to be put back where men want them, i.e. back in the kitchen and the bedroom. Take a look at a microcosm of this male behaviour. Here in the UK we have settled amongst us people who have fled from oppression, yet when they arrive they maintain their own gender based human rights abuses again their women and girls. And sadly, we are too lily livered to stand up to this HR abuse and so it continues even in our so called 21st century democracy. The only thing that will liberate women is the overthrow of Patriarchy and so far there is no sign of this happening.

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
1 year ago

There was no democratic ‘Arab Spring’ in Egypt. The liberal protests never had the support of more than a tiny proportion of the population – and then only in Cairo. Most of the broader opposition to Mubarak came from the religious right. What is happening in Iran is fundamentally different – though I suspect the writer is right about the lack of cohesion amongst the opposition.

Milton Gibbon
Milton Gibbon
1 year ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

Not to mention that Iranians aren’t Arabs and the phrase “Arab Spring” has become a by-word for instability and despair in the region (in contrast to the positive portrayal in the western media). We need to get away from using the same trope for any middle eastern country with civil unrest. Iran is a big regional powerhouse which completely crushed the last uprising there (green movement) which led to no concessions. My money would be on the same result this time. Unfortunately.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
1 year ago
Reply to  Milton Gibbon

Similarly, appending the word “gate” to any perceived scandal. A cheap and lazy media gimmick.

Last edited 1 year ago by Allison Barrows
Alphonse Pfarti
Alphonse Pfarti
1 year ago

Indeed. And this is the autumn in the northern hemisphere. Persian Autumn does sound a bit ‘end of days’ mind you.

Chris Whybrow
Chris Whybrow
1 year ago

A big part of the MeK not making a good government in waiting might be the fact that they are an insane cult hiding out in Albania because most Iranians hate them.

Andrew Watson
Andrew Watson
1 year ago

The Iranian regime is sending weapons (and apparently soldiers) for Russia to use in Ukraine. The Islamist ideology is hardly relevant any more – what matters is the naked and ruthless exercise of power at all costs, and the suppression of any form of democratic expression. As with Russia. The regimes in both countries have led their peoples into the desert.

Stoater D
Stoater D
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Watson

Zelenskyy and the west have a lot to answer for
when it comes the current conflict in Ukraine.
The president was overthrown with the US, NATO and the EU meddling in Ukraine’s internal affairs.
NATO has encroached upon Russia’s back yard over the years. Since 2014, Ukraine has conducted a war shelling Ukrainian citizens in Eastern Ukraine.
Russia is only partly to blame for this conflict.
Ukraine is is a hapless pawn in the game.
No-one in the West cares about Ukraine, some want the war to continue indefinitely.
This is the US’s proxy war against Russia.
Zelenskyy must be forced to negotiate a settlement with Russia.

Last edited 1 year ago by Stoater D
Roger Inkpen
Roger Inkpen
1 year ago
Reply to  Stoater D

Yawn

Stoater D
Stoater D
1 year ago
Reply to  Roger Inkpen

Do you dispute that ?
“Yawn” is pretty pathetic.
Are you happy that our government
Is spending ÂŁbillions to prolong a war that is NONE of our business ?
You really need to stop reading the Daily Mail and watching the BBC.

harry storm
harry storm
1 year ago
Reply to  Stoater D

It IS our business, as Chamberlain discovered in 1939 after calling HItler’s menacing of Czechoslovakia in 1938 “a quarrel in a far away country between people of whom we know nothing.” Putin’s idea of a revived Russian “empire” includes all the former Soviet republics, and other countries like Poland. Why do you think the Swedes and Finns, who have been neutral for so long, are now clamouring to join NATO?

Ian Stewart
Ian Stewart
1 year ago
Reply to  Stoater D

I’m happy about spending some money with no lives lost in the west to grind down an entity that repeatedly threatens us with nuclear conflagration. That’s a huge win – but you’d rather see Putin the dictator establish his new empire?

Micael Gustavsson
Micael Gustavsson
1 year ago
Reply to  Stoater D

I dispute that there was any overthrow of Ukrainian government by NATO or the US.
And even if that where true about the Maidan uprising, Zelensky was not part of that. He won the election in 2019 as an opposition party.
And why do you think Russia has the right to a “backyard”. What about the sovereignty of the Ukraine?

Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Stoater D

I agree.

And I would add that anybody who is unable to describe the Holodomor has no business commenting on Russia/Ukraine relations.

harry storm
harry storm
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill Tomlinson

I suspect most commenters here know all about the Holodomor.

Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  harry storm

I VERY much doubt it!

Ian Stewart
Ian Stewart
1 year ago
Reply to  harry storm

I think Bill feels he’s an expert and the rest of us should bow down to his wisdom. No idea why he’s on Unherd where readers don’t appreciate censorship by supposed ‘experts’.

Noel Chiappa
Noel Chiappa
1 year ago
Reply to  harry storm

I dunno about “most”; many, yeah.

Ian Stewart
Ian Stewart
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill Tomlinson

So you’re a big fan of censorship then? Only experts can talk about a subject?

Thats what led to extreme covid lockdowns and its consequences. So called experts banning alternative views.

Dougie Undersub
Dougie Undersub
1 year ago
Reply to  Stoater D

Please explain why Russia is entitled to a backyard?

Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago

Same reason as America is entitled to a back yard. Remember the Cuban Crisis of 1962?

Micael Gustavsson
Micael Gustavsson
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill Tomlinson

The Soviet Union put nuclear missiles on Cuba. NATO has not been putting nuclear missiles in the Eastern European nations in NATO.
After the Cuban crisis was over, the Cuba continued as an ally of The Soviet Union with conventional weapons for the rest of the Cold War. Same as the Nato states like Poland etc now.

Stoater D
Stoater D
1 year ago

No explanation is required.
It is self evident.

harry storm
harry storm
1 year ago
Reply to  Stoater D

Tell that to the people who live in the so-called ‘backyard.’ Realpolitik at its nastiest.

Ian Stewart
Ian Stewart
1 year ago
Reply to  Stoater D

You don’t like freedom, eh?

Micael Gustavsson
Micael Gustavsson
1 year ago
Reply to  Stoater D

Self evident? How?

Stoater D
Stoater D
1 year ago
Reply to  Stoater D

So there are at least 15 brain-washed warmongers in the commentary.
Are you prepared to have your children
fight and die for Ukraine ?
Would you fight and die for Ukraine ?
You despicable fools.

harry storm
harry storm
1 year ago
Reply to  Stoater D

And so ends the so-called argument. True colours and all that.

Ian Stewart
Ian Stewart
1 year ago
Reply to  harry storm

Yup he’s lost it.

Noel Chiappa
Noel Chiappa
1 year ago
Reply to  Stoater D

The Ukrainians seem to be quite happy to do most of the fighting and dying; indeed, if they weren’t, it would be a waste of time trying to help. There are a small corps of foreign volunteers, but the bulk of the fighters (and the casualties, on their side) are Ukrainians.

V Z
V Z
1 year ago
Reply to  Stoater D

Frankly, this site suggests quite different level of discussion than simply repeating slogans of Russian propaganda. To bring it back to reality, several questions may be asked: 1. Why Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24th? 2. What are goals of Russian invasion now? 3. What is Russia doing in Ukraine eight month later? 4. Should Putin be forced by all means available to leave Ukraine and restore its territorial integrity? That usually cuts empty rhetoric. And perhaps the most “interesting” question #5: What do you think Putin is going to do next if he wins (God forbids!)?
As for the last claim that Zelensky must be forced to negotiate, that is what Russians are trying to accomplish by bombing Ukranian cities and killing innocent civilians, including children. In fact, they are proud of it and some of leading Russian propagandists have been openly calling to kill as many as possible, while others calling to create mass starvation suggesting that would bring Zelensky to the negotiation table. Should the West agree with that or to help destroying genocidal Russian regime? The answer is obvious. Soo before calling other people “fools” I recommend taking a pause and think it through. Unless of course you get your compensation from Moscow which is also possible.

harry storm
harry storm
1 year ago
Reply to  Stoater D

Yet another heartless critique that doesn’t even deign to mention the democratic wishes of the countries that joined NATO and did so for protection. Russia doesn’t need protection from NATO, which has never threatened Russia. Russia’s neighbouring states — former Soviet Republics and Warsaw Pact countries — need protection from the nasty Bear still dreaming of Empire.

Ian Stewart
Ian Stewart
1 year ago
Reply to  Stoater D

The only bit I agree with is it’s the “US proxy war against Russia”. Absolutely correct – and a brilliant way to grind down the bampot Putin who thinks genocide is acceptable.

Aaron James
Aaron James
1 year ago

I have always felt that if only we would take the Iranians in, quit the sanctions, let them have tourism on the scale it could be so we visited and got familiar with how amazing the country is, let them be part of the world fully – that democracy of a sort would fallow naturally – we keep them contained.

Only like them and their Mullahs, West and Iran are locked in this destructive relationship, which seemingly has no way out either. They are a good people, they like the West, they respect education, as immigrants they are entrepreneurial and successful..Keeping them isolated helps keep this stalemate of Mullahs, isolation, Great Satan, going. Maybe it has some comparison to the Balkans in the Soviet times, and they moved on when their strong men fell. Remember when Enver Hoxha and Ceaușescu fell….because the West was open to them then.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
1 year ago
Reply to  Aaron James

It didn’t work with China. The extra money that flowed their way has if anything made them more authoritarian and assertive, why do you presume the Iranian regime would be any different?

chris Barton
chris Barton
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

Very good point.

Inger Hvidsten
Inger Hvidsten
1 year ago
Reply to  chris Barton

The difference is that Xi has broght growth, self-confidence and pride to the common chinese due to their economic success and military power. Polls have shown that the chinese rate economy higher than democracy – which they have no traditions for. In addition; the government doesn’t discriminate/subordinate women in particular. None of this is atributable to Iran, with whom they share the total lack of (individual) freedom and democracy.

Noel Chiappa
Noel Chiappa
1 year ago
Reply to  Inger Hvidsten

No, it was Deng who brought “growth, self-confidence and pride to the common Chinese”. Xi is busy marching them backwards.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
1 year ago
Reply to  Aaron James

What do you mean, “let them”. The Persians I know were modern, educated, urbane, and well-travelled under the Shah. The mullahs isolated the country by choice and declared war on the world. The barbarians running the country into poverty and desperation for 43 years want it that way. Valerie Jarrett’s Obama’s insane nuclear deal was ended by Trump; had it not been, God only knows what destruction would have been unleashed. Ultimately, Iran in Iran’s problem, and it looks like her people are finally doing something about it – as are many in the West, who have also had enough with our own repressive regimes.

Carol Scott
Carol Scott
1 year ago

I lived in Iran until we had to evacuate in February 1979. We loved it there and I agree it was quite a free country then. Things didn’t completely turn until the soldiers refused to fire on their citizens. I remember that day well when Khomeni returned. The middle classes and students did not want or expect a theocracy, they thought they would get a fairer society and one a bit more respectful of their religion. There were people from all over the world there and we all got along. I met many disillusioned young people in London and Germany, some of whom had lost friends to the regime. My late husband always hoped one day we could go back, being forced to leave it always felt like unfinished business but too late now. I hope someday it becomes a relatively free country again.

Mike Michaels
Mike Michaels
1 year ago
Reply to  Aaron James

Bit naive.

harry storm
harry storm
1 year ago
Reply to  Aaron James

A complete misunderstanding of the nature of Islamic fundamentalism.

Ian Stewart
Ian Stewart
1 year ago
Reply to  Aaron James

Eh? Bit tricky when they kept sending people over to kill us when we didn’t support their religious views.
But I agree that opening up could lead to a wave of change, but it needs tactics, a plan as it sometimes doesn’t work (like with Russia). It’s very sad as the vast majority are wonderful people, they would complement western culture in so many interesting ways.

Last edited 1 year ago by Ian Stewart
Kerie Receveur
Kerie Receveur
1 year ago

I listen to Mayhar Tousi on Iran. He understands it.

Stoater D
Stoater D
1 year ago
Reply to  Kerie Receveur

Absolutely correct.

Brian Villanueva
Brian Villanueva
1 year ago

A restatement of Thomas Hobbes’ caution against dispensing with even bad governments, because the alternative is often worse.

Rob C
Rob C
1 year ago

It seems so. I’ve just been reading the article on Albania.

Tim Luckhurst
Tim Luckhurst
1 year ago

A wise and accurate assessment. See also Malcolm Gladwell;’s perceptive essay Small Change, Why the Revolution will not be tweeted https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2010/10/04/small-change-malcolm-gladwell

David Lindsay
David Lindsay
1 year ago
Reply to  Tim Luckhurst

Are you Professor Tim Luckhurst of South College, Durham, please? If so, then could you possibly email [email protected]? Some conference trade may be coming your way. Very many thanks.

Last edited 1 year ago by David Lindsay
Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago

Sunak should closen ties with India and Israel, and come out to the electorate in honesty about the global and national Islamic terrorist threat, with courage and without fear of the media and the national socialist ‘ fifth column’, and start dismantling their defences, including hate crimes.

Johnny West
Johnny West
1 year ago

Totally fatuous. The protestors *can’t* have a Khomeini. Khomeini came out of institutions which were centuries old – the Shah had already banished him in the 60s because he represented a threat because he could mobilise an entire *preexisting* constituency – the faithful. Sure, there is a certain titilliation in the fact that Khomeini used the media of the day – tape cassettes from the suburbs of Paris. And in the chaos of the revolution, many progressive hopes were – for a few months – pinned on the revolution, Islamism or no Islamism. But that was all over in the first year, 18 months. It died with the hopes of people like Bani Sadr and Sadeq Ghobtzadeh. But there are no institutions in Iran representing the values the protestors are fighting for. This central flaw in the article is compounded by lots of casual laziness… Mursi as “Pharaoh” – really? And how exactly *could* there be a Palestinian Ben Gurion when the prerequisites – wide freedom to build the institutions of a future state, including trade unions, banks, suburbs, sports teams, an indigenous Academy – a wide range of social, economic and political institutions which Ben Gurion then stepped forward to lead – have been ruthlessly suppressed by the state of Israel? (Its no coincidence that the current Hebrew word for terrorist – ŚžŚ—Ś‘Śœ – had the related but very different meaning of “saboteur” before 1948. The Zionist movement understood very well the conditions that allowed them to build their nationalism and diligently ensured they would not be available to Palestinian nationalists seeking to challenge them in their turn). Faux sophisticated. Lazy demi-scholarship.

David Lindsay
David Lindsay
1 year ago

I do not know who is going to come out on top in Iran, but I know that it is not going to be a teenager. There are people behind all of this, and there are people waiting in the wings, as they have been doing since before many of these courageous schoolgirls’ parents were born.

The longstanding neoconservative and liberal-interventionist aim has been to install the utterly insane PMOI/MEK as Iran’s new regime. That is the weirdest political cult in the world, and it has been in exile since 1981, meaning that it has no constituency in a country of which half the population is under 30 years of age.

Consider how the world turns, since that outfit was headquartered for many years in Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, where it participated in atrocities committed by the Iraqi Revolutionary Guard. During the Iraq War, Biden’s, Bush’s and Blair’s Boys bombed the PMOI/MEK into surrender, as part of a deal with Iran to hand over certain al-Qaeda suspects who were of course in any case opponents of the Iranian regime. Oh, how the world does turn.

Opponents of the Iraq War were screamed down as Islamists and revolutionary Marxists due to the presence of a few of each in our enormous ranks. But now the plan is to hand over Iran to the people who really do manage the remarkable feat of being both, yet who were nevertheless closely allied to Saddam Hussein.

The Americans have relocated the PMOI/MEK to Albania, which is now a member of NATO. It also maintains a considerable presence in the France of Emmanuel Macron. And it is allied both to Israel and to Saudi Arabia, with that latter alliance, at least, showing us that its Shia principles are truly worth as much as its Leftist ones.