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  • Technorati: graph / links

    C4 report: Double standards towards Muslims in Iran


    by guest on 16th December, 2009 at 8:54 pm    

    A guest post by Secunder Kermani, first published on the new blog The Samosa

    A prime example is the recent repression of anti-government protesters in Iran following Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s disputed presidential election victory. I’ve spent the last few months producing an exclusive story for Channel 4 News exposing the systematic rape of young male protesters by the security forces, based on damning evidence from a former member of the ultra-conservative Basij militia.

    If such allegations were made in Palestine or Iraq, with young Muslim men being raped by American or Israeli forces, there would be uproar in the Muslim world. Even the rumour of such events would provoke a veritable tidal wave of fury – and rightly so.

    But where is that level of furious indignation now? Why isn’t it being directed against the Iranian government?

    This isn’t even a question of electoral fraud – I have no conclusive evidence to prove whether vote rigging took place or not. This is a story about the gross violations of fundamental human rights, of the vile and degrading torture of innocent teenagers who dared to express their opposition to the government.

    And what’s more, it’s being perpetrated by people who claim to be enforcing pure Islamic law.

    Surely this hypocrisy should enrage those same protesters who are so vocal in their condemnation of Israeli atrocities in Palestine, who call for foreign troops to leave Iraq and Afghanistan, who were so incensed by the images from Guantanamo Bay and Abu Ghraib?

    Yet it seems not.

    Muslim groups have expressed cautious concern at best about human rights abuses in the country, but have for the most part ignored them, sweeping them under the carpet like a dirty secret. The same can be said of the leftist groups who have so nobly taken it upon themselves to defend Muslim lands from Western imperialism.

    Why?

    Perhaps it’s because debate on Iran is always framed through the paradigms of international conflicts.

    Ahmadinejad = Anti-West/Israel = Good.

    It seems the Iranian people have been sacrificed at the altar of anti-Americanism by those who should logically be standing up for their rights.

    But there seems a tangible reluctance among Muslims to condemn anyone else with even a Muslim name.

    Internal abuses in the Muslim world are brushed over in favour of loud posturing against Western imperialism and its bloody effects.

    Guantanamo Bay was a prime example – far greater abuses and injustices are committed every second of every day in prisons across the Muslim world, yet the thousands of wrongly imprisoned and tortured prisoners, both political and non-political, fail to attract anywhere near the amount of sympathy from Muslims across the world, including Britain, as for Gitmo inmates.

    There is in fact a tendency to deny any abuses allegedly committed by other Muslims. Just witness the conspiracy theories sweeping Pakistan, where despite the Taliban loudly and proudly claiming responsibility for the wave of suicide bombings, people are convinced they are the work of Indian/Israeli/American/Blackwater agents.

    Similarly, many Muslims have gravitated towards the Iranian government’s official stance that the protesters have been stirred up by Western agents, and the allegations of abuse mere fabrications.

    Few leftist groups have been anywhere near as forthright in their condemnation of the Iranian government as they have of American actions elsewhere in the world. And depressingly some rank and file activists seem to have adopted the Press TV line of claiming the unrest has all been whipped up by the BBC. For them too:

    Ahmadinejad = Anti-West/Israel = Good.

    It is time to move beyond such simplistic black and white views of the world. Condemning the shocking abuses perpetrated by the Iranian regime on protesters in no way softens equally valid criticism of Israeli apartheid and American selfishness. It is indeed refreshing to see a leader stand up to Israel – but this shouldn’t be at the cost of the blood of internal dissenters.

    It is time that the Iranian people, victims of horrific torture, received the support they deserve from the Muslim and wider world. It is time that if anything, Muslims condemn those who have perpetrated such abuses even more strongly than they have the Israelis and Americans, as these rapes have been carried out in the name of upholding an Islamic Republic. And it’s time that leftist groups in the UK and elsewhere made their stance on the issue clear. Loud, vocal condemnation of the Iranian government’s treatment of protesters would be a good start.

    .
    The C4 report


         
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    Filed in: Current affairs, Middle East, Religion






    39 Comments below   |   Add your own

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    1. Thomas Byrne — on 16th December, 2009 at 1:06 pm  

      Agreed very very much with this article. I'm not even sure most people are aware though most of the mainstream news coverage is around things like the leaked documents recently, rather than this.

    2. Refresh — on 16th December, 2009 at 2:39 pm  

      I find it a disgrace that this is going on (assuming the reports to be accurate). The problem with the article is it presumes we should instinctively know what is going on because the auther is or has been working on a project with Channel 4.

      For goodness sake, let people hear, see and evaluate the allegations and supporting evidence before castigating them for not speaking out.

      It seems to suggest you may not have been the right person to be working with C4 if you are so intent on prejudging the audience.

      As for muslims, have you considered trying to get your message across to them? If as you say, they are too preoccupied with Israeli urgings and US UK military interventions, then surely you have to tailor your message and stress there is no connection.

      That is campaigning.

      The shortcut of course is to make it an attack on muslim sensibilities.

    3. douglas clark — on 16th December, 2009 at 3:48 pm  

      Refresh,

      I'd have thought quite a lot of Muslims read this blog?

      Secunder Kermani has at least one witness to what he says. And he has made a start by presenting his case here. There is other evidence of Iran using Islam for it's own ends.

      Anyway, Secunder Kermani, do you want to join Amnesty International? And that is in no way a flippant point…

    4. Refresh — on 16th December, 2009 at 4:17 pm  

      My point was that he should just present the facts, not open up with an unecessary attack on people he doesn't even know. And his justifications are pitiful. It leaves a bad taste.

    5. The Queen of Fiddlesticks — on 16th December, 2009 at 4:22 pm  

      Of muslims I know - Iran is concidered neither “muslim” or even part of the “arab” world.
      There is a tremendous amount of Nationalism seperating muslims.
      And in Islam they believe governments are set in power by allah himself ( which seems only to apply to Islamic governments though - and all other systems are from satan no matter what - for reasons I can't figure out ) so you won't really see many muslim countries or populations step up or in -to support or defend anyone …. god willing they will just be magically saved if it is gods will, if not oh well thats gods will too. Which is why like you have expressed above the Iranian government would get more support than the protesters.

      I agree with everything you have said in this post but at the same time from my own investigation - muslims in general are both peaceful and passive, how can they be shocked by or outraged by anything their own governments do? Look at the religious police in Saudi Arabia … They still have public beheadings and crucifiction - to us its barbaric - to them its a great idea and a benifet to society - I think the whole concept of “human rights” is non existent especially in extreme places like Iran and Saudi - .
      To me it seems any abuse by Islamic governments is not only gods will, and good… and any protest or action against it is an attack on Islam, not gods will, and bad ….

      The closing statement here is very pationate … leftist groups in the UK and elsewhere make their stance on the issue clear. Loud, vocal condemnation of the Iranian government’s treatment of protesters would be a good start.

      How are you so upset over this and not the million other things?
      I could take that whole last paragraph and it sounds just like what we were told about Iraq before the invasion…..

      .

    6. douglas clark — on 16th December, 2009 at 4:25 pm  

      Refresh,

      not open up with an unecessary attack on people he doesn't even know.

      In what way are his justifications pitiful?

      You Sir, need to explain yourself, the fact that it leaves a 'bad taste' says sweet fanny adams. It suggests you have no arguement.

      He has presented the 'facts' as he sees them. The 'fact' that you find that distasteful says more about you than anything else.

      Perhaps you believe that it is impossible?

    7. Refresh — on 16th December, 2009 at 4:38 pm  

      Douglas, what I don't understand is why he attacks muslims when the case itself stands or falls on the facts.

      Aren't there enough articles and posts going for that easy option. Does it not occur to you that I might be sick to the back teeth of these attacks?

      Why does he not just tell us what is going on, and seek appreciation, understanding from all right minded people? Its not even a muslim/non-muslim issue.

      What was the diversion into Israel/US/West about? People do have genuine concerns about what is going on in the countries of the region around Iran. And the role external powers play.

      As for abuses of power, it is usually what brings down regimes.

    8. Sunny H — on 16th December, 2009 at 8:17 pm  

      Douglas, what I don't understand is why he attacks muslims when the case itself stands or falls on the facts.

      Well, but you also know that people like to interpret facts differently. After all, we saw the facts of what happened in Iran earlier this year - and yet we saw George Galloway defend the regime's actions. What you gotta say about that?

      Secondly, you don't like him attacking Muslims. But he highlights legitimate criticisms. That's like someone else saying they don't like you highlighting Islamophobia. You can challenge if something wrong in the article - but it seems your concern is that the tone isn't right enough for you.

    9. halima — on 16th December, 2009 at 8:41 pm  

      i am with refresh here. the author has a good account of what is gross repression of human rights. but i don't understand why he's confusing his story with 'why aren't muslims ranting more about iran'. as far as i can see, if i had this story, i'd plug it here, i'd take it to all the newspapers and channel and human rights org i can access. it would be the story that makes my career. but if i wasted my energy on why this outrage isn't picked up by the muslim world - well, that's another story, it's not the one about iran. i disagree with the premise that anyone agrees that the iranian leader to be anti-western, most agree he is a joke - and best ignored for being a fanatic and mad. most people know nothing short of a revolution is being quashed behind iran's tightly censored doors. it is great that the author has got an insider story - as the iranian censors are so restricting that no one can tell a story about inside iran unless it's on tourism. get it out - and i wish you well with it.

    10. MiriamBinder — on 16th December, 2009 at 10:24 pm  

      Its abuse of what is in essence a Western concept of Human Rights. Lets be quite clear on that. The Western view comes from the individual perspective as opposed to the Middle Eastern view where acknowledged community membership is primary. I imagine that it is the frustrating when, viewing with Western eyes, we don't see the reactions we expect. Raping these young men is more then just physical abuse; it is an emotional castration, a psychological element to the 'war' between the authorities and their detractors; a far more elemental, brutal form of the Western Security forces wandering among protesters here taking photographs and gathering DNA databases.

      As for asking why the Muslim world is not more up in arms about the matter? Isn't that what a lot of us in the West are doing with our cries of 'Why aren't Muslim leaders more vociferous in their condemnation of 'x', 'y' and 'z'?. ' 'Why isn't the local Muslim Community more active in rooting out 'extremism and Jihadists in their midsts?'

      “It is time to move beyond such simplistic black and white views of the world. Condemning the shocking abuses perpetrated by the Iranian regime on protesters in no way softens equally valid criticism of Israeli apartheid and American selfishness. It is indeed refreshing to see a leader stand up to Israel – but this shouldn’t be at the cost of the blood of internal dissenters.”

      To me this is probably the most important paragraph. We do tend to latch on to what is most relevant to our Western sense of security and in the process shut our eyes to other, less relevant issues; or, to put it another way, we tend to centre on whatever it is that touches us personally and seem prepared to forego commenting on the no less unsavoury but less personal.

    11. camilla — on 16th December, 2009 at 10:30 pm  

      the majority of abused people in Iran are christians… that's the reason they (muslims) don't care

    12. douglas clark — on 16th December, 2009 at 11:03 pm  

      Refresh,

      Could we stick to the subject please? It is all very well to defend Muslims, for goodness sake, given the chance I will vote for a Muslim. He's an SNP candidate. But that Muslim would obviously not accept what Secunder Kermani accuses some Muslims of doing.

      There is a difference.

      I hope you'd agree with the universal. There are horrible people who see politics, or religion, as a fucked up excuse for exercising their inner psychopath…

    13. Random Guy — on 17th December, 2009 at 12:16 am  

      My knee-jerk reaction to this article is as follows:

      Piss off, there are a shit load of Muslims - those that would be described as fundamentalist because of their devotion to their faith - that constantly deride the Middle Eastern countries for their facade of being “Islamic countries”. The reason you don't hear about them is that they do not get a voice in the Mainstream media, where 9/10 stories are about negative portrayal of muslims.

      The other thing, which is quite obvious and which you have refrained from mentionig in your post is that leftist groups and muslims are still quite focused on the huge misery, death and devastation the West has wrought in Iraq, illegally and probably more for oil than anything else.

      So to be brief, take your sanctimonious tone and shove it. No offense.

      As I said, this is just my initial reaction. May have time to post more later.

    14. bananabrain — on 17th December, 2009 at 1:18 am  

      i disagree with the premise that anyone agrees that the iranian leader to be anti-western, most agree he is a joke - and best ignored for being a fanatic and mad.

      i'm sure the victims of the current repression find him a very funny joke indeed and are doing their best to ignore him from the inside of their shipping crates. i personally find it “hilarious” how he is such good friends with that other dictator chavez who is, lest we forget, such a hero to the left, including our own would-be dictator, that newt-fancying bolshevik that used to be mayor of london.

      mrs bananabrain's comment when she saw the report - “in what universe is this islamic behaviour? in which Qur'an does it say this sort of stuff is OK?” i don't think i've ever seen her so disgusted, but then again, she tends to ignore geopolitics in case it sets me off on one of my rants and she has to take my dinner away.

      b'shalom

      bananabrain

    15. douglas clark — on 17th December, 2009 at 2:26 am  

      Miriam Binder,

      You say:

      Its abuse of what is in essence a Western concept of Human Rights. Lets be quite clear on that. The Western view comes from the individual perspective as opposed to the Middle Eastern view where acknowledged community membership is primary. I imagine that it is frustrating when, viewing with Western eyes, we don't see the reactions we expect. Raping these young men is more then just physical abuse; it is an emotional castration, a psychological element to the 'war' between the authorities and their detractors; a far more elemental, brutal form of the Western Security forces wandering among protesters here taking photographs and gathering DNA databases.

      At least I am not getting my arse in a sling for objecting to that.

      Just saying.

      It seems to me to be important that we, you and I, can speak against evil, for that is aparently what it is, without fear. That seems to me to be a difference.

      There is absolutely no excuse for this. None whatsoever. The extent it has entered the Western World, and it has, is a complete, utter disgrace.

    16. douglas clark — on 17th December, 2009 at 2:33 am  

      Bananabrain, I am fairly confident that homosexual rape is not allowed in the Koran. Perhaps others will prove me wrong.

    17. MiriamBinder — on 17th December, 2009 at 2:39 am  

      Agreed Douglas that it is vile no matter how you are wont to view the world. And for the benefit of those who would like to view my post as an apology for those vile acts, I'll state quite unequivocally that such is not my intention.

    18. bananabrain — on 17th December, 2009 at 3:00 am  

      douglas - that was indeed mrs bb's view, not that she is any kind of expert, not that i am either; it was just blatantly obvious to both of us that in no way shape or form could this behaviour possibly have religious sanction. i don't think she really realised just how bad the regime actually is, bearing in mind the utter normality of our iranian friends and neighbours who are always telling us about popping back there to see the family and complaining about what idiots the people running the place are.

      b'shalom

      bananabrain

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    20. douglas clark — on 17th December, 2009 at 3:47 am  

      Bananabrain and Miriam Binder,

      If it can be shown that that is what your normal, neighbouhood Muslim actually thinks or approves of then you win.

      It is not my expierence, but there you go.

    21. MiriamBinder — on 17th December, 2009 at 3:52 am  

      I didn't realise we were in a contest but all I can offer is my word for it. I haven't reams of affidavits to scan for you …

    22. Refresh — on 17th December, 2009 at 4:05 am  

      'Could we stick to the subject please?'

      There are actually two, possibly three or even four subjects raised by Secunder.

      There is only one subject Secunder needed to focus on - the abuse, the others detract from that central issue - as you can now see with the ensuing debate.

    23. Shamit — on 17th December, 2009 at 4:42 am  

      “Internal abuses in the Muslim world are brushed over in favour of loud posturing against Western imperialism and its bloody effects.”

      There is a lot of truth in that statement - And this statement has nothing to do with the religion or its followers - however, a great number of Islamic Countries use the religion as a shield to perpetrate the most awful human rights abuses.

      And there is no outcry about that within the Middle Eastern establishment because they all pretty much do the same. Ranging from the so called moderate UAE to the idiotic and stifling Saudi Arabia to the so called secular dictators in Syria and Egypt to revolutionaries such as Gaddaffi.

      In Iran, the vast majority of the population are under 30 and their voices are not being heard and religion is the excuse that this regime uses to kill their voices and kill them too.

      But you do not see any challenge from any OIC countries because most of them fall in the same category. There is a democratic deficiency which is somehow exacerbated under “Islamic” regimes. What is the problem of highlighting that?

    24. Shamit — on 17th December, 2009 at 4:49 am  

      Similarly, there wasn't much outcry within the Muslim world when Saddam Hussein used chemical weapons against the Kurds;

      Similarly, there wasn't any embassy being lit up or people killed when school girls were forced to be burnt alive by the Wahabi mofos in Saudi Arabia;

      This has got nothing to do with Islam or Muslims - anyone who has been to Dubai knows how poor muslims from South Asia are treated. Or in Saudi Arabia.

      Its about using religion and literal words of the Koran as a shield and as an excuse to commit heinous acts.

      There was outcry in Saudi Arabia about the Swiss referendum where the chief cleric (supported by the Al-saud family) said this was an act of war against all Muslims. There was no condemnation from any other middle eastern countries or for that matter anyone.

    25. Refresh — on 17th December, 2009 at 4:54 am  

      'What is the problem of highlighting that?'

      None. That would be a debate worth having. Except the article doesn't quite do that, it appears to address ordinary muslims.

      As for the OIC, they do need a good kicking. The problem they've got, the elite that is, is that they won't speak out because quite a few of those states would not want to draw attention to their own shortcomings. Those being their levers of repression and therefore power.

      The presumption of the article is ordinary muslims do not see that. A good example is the thousands of 'disappeared' in Pakistan and Afghanistan. Many of whom were sold on for generous bounties to spend years in Guantanamo Bay and numerous other secret prisions. [Obama promised to shut them all down - have they been shutdown?].

      I was pleased to come across a relatively new organisation (Defending Human Rights in Pakistan I believe) which wants all the disappeared returned to their families. Lets hope momentum is with them.

    26. bananabrain — on 17th December, 2009 at 5:02 am  

      If it can be shown that that is what your normal, neighbouhood Muslim actually thinks or approves of then you win.

      what you appear to be asking, douglas, is whether i went next door and asked my everyday muslim iranian neighbour whether it's religiously OK to rape someone for protesting against the system, i think i can pretty much predict that they would say it wasn't.

      i suppose that means i win. i only wish it meant those poor sods in prison won as well. all i can say is that this is infamous and it must not stand. these people must be punished.

      b'shalom

      bananabrain

    27. Refresh — on 17th December, 2009 at 6:37 am  

      Shamit, I also wonder whether the OIC made any noises regarding Guantanamo Bay and the network of prisons; the extraordinary rendition carried our under contract within their own member states.

      With regards Saddam Hussein and use of chemical weapons on the Kurds, I was vocal at the time. We should ask who else kept quiet.

    28. douglas clark — on 17th December, 2009 at 6:37 am  

      babanabrain,

      That:

      what you appear to be asking, douglas, is whether i went next door and asked my everyday muslim iranian neighbour whether it's religiously OK to rape someone for protesting against the system, i think i can pretty much predict that they would say it wasn't.

      Suggests to me at least, that subscibing to a unique identifyer for muslims is almost as ridiculous as finding one for Jews.

      But, you are not beyond that, are you? You subscribe to the Spitoon philosophy that the brain dead Alexander Meleagrou-Hitchens has actually half of a brain. don't you?

      The aforesaid Alexander Meleagrou-Hitchens seems to have rights on the Spitoon. My challenges to him have been ignored by Faisal, or Sid as we used to know him.

      His, AMH, rubbish, stands uncorrected on your new, favourite planet.

      Your new, favourite web site is frankly a piece of propoganda.

    29. Refresh — on 17th December, 2009 at 6:43 am  

      And we should also ask why there was a 'dignified' silence whilst Iraq and Iran were at war resulting in nearly a millon dead. Including use of chemical weapons by Saddam Hussein.

    30. douglas clark — on 17th December, 2009 at 7:05 am  

      Refresh,

      Point taken. I don't know a lot about that conflict, but it seems to me that Iraq was the aggressor and that the UN ought to have intervened?

    31. Refresh — on 17th December, 2009 at 10:44 am  

      Douglas, believe it or not there was a Security Council resolution and yet some members of the Council breaking their own arms embargo to fuel the continuation of the war.

      See also the Scott Report.

    32. dave bones — on 17th December, 2009 at 11:25 am  

      That is a really disturbing article cheers for posting

    33. douglas clark — on 17th December, 2009 at 11:28 am  

      Refresh,

      Whilst you and I agree, it is pretty obvious that bananabrain and Sid are not?

      Lets see whether Sid or bananabrain are willing to discuss Alexander Meleagrou-Hitchens on a neutral forum such as this.

      Frankly, I doubt it.

    34. Shamit — on 17th December, 2009 at 11:38 am  

      Refresh

      I do not disagree with you on anyone of the points about human rights abuses and how the security council is the last body that should be talking about it. Especially when you got China and Russia on the council.

      With regard to OIC and their silence on extraordinary rendition - well it does not surprise me or you.

      We do face a problem of terrorism today and partly we the west are to be blamed. We blindly supported Saudi Arabia when it pumped in money into Pakistan to create madrassas and we did not question Pakistan and Saudi Arabia's support of Taliban. And we still continue to support oppressive regimes which do not offer any opportunities for their people. When would we learn? The proxy wars of the cold war are coming now to bite our ass.

      While I know many blame Blair and more Bush — has anyone ever thought they inherited the problem and its escalation.

      We did not step in when international aid was most needed and the aid needed to go to the right places. Even today, we tried to buy our way out of the climate conundrum trying to bribe developing nations because we are not willing to accept our responsibility. But I digress — my point is I actually agree with you on almost all the points you have raised in reply to me.

    35. douglas clark — on 17th December, 2009 at 12:02 pm  

      Shamit,

      Well said! I too consider extraordinary rendition to be the new evil, and allowing Saudi to develop it's own brand of Islam strikes me as somewhat stupid too.

    36. Refresh — on 17th December, 2009 at 6:00 pm  

      Shamit, with reference to the subversion of the madrassa system I refer you to Zbigniew Brzezinski who had no problem incorporating them in his grand vision of mobilising short-sighted muslims to take on the Soviet Union in Afghanistan. Now a Cold War hangover, blowback and an eye on the future.

      Look out for his views on promoting more and more 'Sharia'. Consider it a doctrine not that far removed from the one that operated in Latin America.

    37. bananabrain — on 18th December, 2009 at 3:51 am  

      You subscribe to the Spitoon philosophy that the brain dead Alexander Meleagrou-Hitchens has actually half of a brain. don't you?

      douglas, if you want to talk about that particular subject, i've already said, i think, that you should take it up with the people involved. i write at the spittoon, indeed, but that doesn't mean i am therefore forced to agree with absolutely everything on it, nor have i signed up to any “philosophy”. similarly, i've been cross-posted over to harry's place a number of times by david t and, fairly recently, had a piece on CiF - now you could hardly describe me as a guardian-reading type. so this “oh you publish at X so you must agree with everything anyone writes on it” argument is just pure nonsense. for what it's worth, i've met a m-h once, he seems like a sensible enough chap, but i'm really not about to start making declarations about it. at any rate he seems far less hostile and doctrinaire than you do, to be frank. as for describing this site as “neutral”, i think we all know that's bollocks. it's a leftie blog and always has been, there's nowt wrong with that as long as you don't ask me to subscribe to being a leftie. i know leon, rumbold, jai and so on don't always agree with everything sunny says and the day all of them do will be a sad one indeed, nor am i having a go at sunny, either!

      Suggests to me at least, that subscribing to a unique identifyer for muslims is almost as ridiculous as finding one for Jews.

      er…yes, have i ever said anything else?

      Your new, favourite web site is frankly a piece of nasty propoganda. You are welcome to it.

      thank you - you are welcome to not visit it. don't let the door hit you in the arse on the way out.

      I happen to think that Osama Saeed is a better candidate than the son of Mohhamed Sarwar. But you wouldn't allow any criticism of Mohhamed or his son Anas, would you? No you bloody well wouldn't.

      i'm not sure my co-writers (who know more about this sort of thing than i do) would see it that way at all, but don't let anything get in the way of your assumptions.

      Nor engage in discussion.

      not of the “have you quit beating your wife?” sort, surely.

      b'shalom

      bananabrain

    38. Reza — on 18th December, 2009 at 9:18 am  

      Secunder

      -“I’ve spent the last few months producing an exclusive story for Channel 4 News exposing the systematic rape of young male protesters by the security forces, based on damning evidence from a former member of the ultra-conservative Basij militia.”

      I heard people discussing these allegations whilst I was in Iran, a few weeks after the election, and whilst I loathe the ‘Hezbollahi’ fanatics that make up the Basiji, I actually find the allegations impossible to believe.

      Yes, I’d love to believe them; they make it easier to hate the Basiji and the Islamic regime. But it’s just so implausible. These are deeply and fanatically religious people. I find it hard to imagine that such a level of appeasement and complicity could possibly exist among the Basiji, not to mention the Iranian police and security forces, to allow this to happen on a “systematic” basis.

      Regardless of that practical impossibility, there is simply no justification whatsoever, however tenuous, for homosexual rape within Shia Islam (or any Islam for that matter). Indeed it is utterly, utterly haraam. That makes it even more implausible.

      (And I say this as someone who is grimly aware that there is a view among a few ultra-‘extremist’ Muslims that the rape of the women of a vanquished enemy is allowed; something to do with the “what the right hand possesses” sura of the Qu’ran. But homosexual rape is something different altogether, even for the most hopeless ‘Islamo-fascist’ nut-cases).

      Let’s be in no doubt what these allegations are; they’re simply another bogus conspiracy theory generated in a country where conspiracy theories are a way of life and where no conspiracy theory is too outlandish to be widely believed by a staggeringly credulous population. But here in the West, we really should know better than to believe this crap.

      The biggest problem I have with unproven, exaggerated and outrageous allegations like these are that they actually undermine legitimate criticism of the thoroughly nasty regime in Iran.

      (I have similar issues with organisations like SIOE that make unwarranted and outlandish claims about Muslims and Islam despite there being so much to criticise legitimately).

      I’ve said before, I believe that Iran today is a shithole. It’s my view that Islam has poisoned its culture forever, and the regime it has is the inevitable result of that poisoned culture.

      But no matter how much I happen to loathe Islam and the instruments of Iran’s Islamic regime, I simply refuse to fall for the ridiculous claim that Basijis are carrying out homosexual rape on a widespread or “systematic” basis.

      That’s just bollocks.

    39. douglas clark — on 19th December, 2009 at 8:06 pm  

      bananabrain,

      Neither you, nor Sid nor Alexander were willing to pick up on what I had to say. Your silence said it all for me.

      thank you - you are welcome to not visit it. don't let the door hit you in the arse on the way out.

      As it has standards as low as Harry's Place when it comes to discussing people, then my arse is not in danger, perhaps my ankles are… Your attempts to smear are pretty juvenile.

      You are the guilty party for allowing Alexander a freedom to post and be protected, in the sense that you don't even defend him, that I don't think, in this case, is deserved.

      But you are happy to be a propogandist.

      Bloody hell! You have really gone down in my estimation.



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