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mattbrowne's avatar

The power of Internet videos - Will Neda Agha-Soltan's death bring down Iran's illegitimate regime?

Asked by mattbrowne (31600points) June 23rd, 2009

From Wikipedia: Neda Agha-Soltan was an Iranian woman whose killing, during the 2009 Iranian election protests, was captured on video by bystanders. The graphic videos were posted on the Internet, and her name quickly became a rallying cry for the opposition.

Twitter entries announced that Neda was buried at the Behesht-e Zahra cemetery outside Tehran, where she was denied a proper funeral by government authorities. Their refusal was corroborated by a family acquaintance. The authorities had allegedly set aside empty graves for those killed during the protests. Time and other news sources have speculated that due to the widespread attention given to Neda’s story by social media networks and mainstream news organizations, she is already being hailed as a martyr. There is also speculation that the Shi’ite cycle of mourning on the third, seventh and 40th day after a person’s death may give the protests sustained momentum, in similar fashion to the Iranian Revolution, where each commemoration of a demonstrator’s death sparked renewed protests, resulting in more deaths, feeding a cycle that eventually resulted in the overthrowing of Iran’s monarchy. On 22 June, 2009, Iranian presidential candidates Mehdi Karroubi and Mir Hossein Moussavi, who are contesting the validity of the election of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, called upon Iranian citizens to commemorate Agha-Soltan.

Will Neda become a symbol for change in Iran? Will her death inspire millions of people and enable them to bring down Iran’s illegitimate and cruel regime?

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25 Answers

EmpressPixie's avatar

I hope so.

These days it seems like the Internet can do just about anything. I absolutely hope it can help Iranians get what they want from their government. It has certainly brought the reality of life there, now, to the rest of the world.

ragingloli's avatar

First, you would have to prove that the elections were indeed manipulated and that this manipulation is the reason that ahmedinejad won, and not just made the percentual difference higher. If there was no manipulation or a manipulation was not the reason for his victory, then the regime is legitimate.
Second, i doubt that the video would be enough to result in the toppling of the government.

mattbrowne's avatar

@ragingloli – The only way to find out the elections were manipulated is a recount with people from all participants present (plus international observers if possible). But this isn’t happening and there’s only one reason: there was fraud on a massive scale.

atlantis's avatar

No it won’t. There are larger factors at play here. And according to my estimations, since the War on Terror, the chunk of society that we call “the masses” have been demoralized and deprived of the right to judgement,not to mention action.

The organisational capabilitites of the Iranian masses connot rely on internet alone. There must be leadership and the regime has been very effective at stifling that.

ragingloli's avatar

@mattbrowne
Or they just don’t want to because they think there is no reason to and would just be a waste of time. Don’t discount other possibilities.

filmfann's avatar

The video in question is here
This death is not what will bring down the government. It is the Government that will self destruct.

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

The regime in Iran operates out of fear and paranoia. A government like that is always the most dangerous. Look at how North Korea treats their citizens. If the Iranian people can break free of the iron grip of the ruling clerics, and bring about the same kind of revolution as happened in 1979, I think that would be awesome. But for that to happen, many more people like Neda are going to be sacrificed. How many young lives is it worth to bring about change?

This is an interesting thing developing over in the Middle East. I am watching it closely, intrigued to see how it turns out, but heartbroken that so many people are being killed for doing something others in the world take for granted.

Never take your freedom to petition the government for redress for granted.

ABoyNamedBoobs03's avatar

I will wish and wait…

Saturated_Brain's avatar

It might just start something. As horrible as it may sound, perhaps the demise of Ahmedinejad’s rule will be accelerated by more killings.. I just think that we’re kinda standing at the edge of a precipice, and no one really has any idea what’ll happen next..

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

That event along with the deaths of the other +15 protesters will be a catalyst for change but the killing alone with force the current administration out of office. There’s a long road ahead.

mattbrowne's avatar

@ragingloli – In theory there’s the possibility that fraud didn’t happen. I just think it’s highly unlikely. If there were no fraud involved, the psychopaths running the country would jump at the opportunity to recount. Imagine their success and vindication! People who threaten to eradicate a whole country full of people need to go to jail.

ragingloli's avatar

@mattbrowne
The fact is that there is only circumstantial evidence pointing to fraud. No court would reach a verdict on such a weak basis.
Your question is worded in a way as if it is absolutely sure that the regime is illegitimate.
It is NOT absolutely sure. Not with just circumstantial evidence.
If you had worded it like “possibby illegitimate”, i would have had no qualms.

mattbrowne's avatar

@ragingloli – I’m fine with most possibly illegitimate

ABoyNamedBoobs03's avatar

@ragingloli when you look at the voting patterns and how neck and neck the race seemed BEFORE election day, such an absurdly huge victory seems very unrealistic, there’s not just a slight chance the elections were tampered with, it’s likely.

ragingloli's avatar

@ABoyNamedBoobs03
it is still merely circumstantial evidence.
and “likely” still is not “certainly”, not even “very likely”

ABoyNamedBoobs03's avatar

@ragingloli give it some time, likely is reason enough to pursue an investigation through the UN if you ask me. Perhaps there’s no solid evidence because those that are investigating it may very well be the ones who changed the counts to begin with. An outside regulator is needed here without a doubt.

phoenyx's avatar

A martyr who’s name means “voice” or “calling,” when they are angry that they have no voice? It is almost too perfect. I’m going to mark off the 3rd, 7th and 40th day. This could be big.

phoenyx's avatar

Also, they admitted there were some voting irregularities yesterday: some areas had over 100% voting.

EmpressPixie's avatar

Obama commented on it in his press conference today. He’s not done talking, but he’s moved past Iran for the moment. Very interesting speech—it should be posted shortly, I’ll try to link when it’s up.

btko's avatar

@ragingloli

You say that if Amadinijad was going to win with or without the manipulations then it doesn’t really matter—I don’t understand that all. In my eyes, if the government is manipulating votes they are done.

Of course, proof is another thing.

dynamicduo's avatar

Her video will not itself bring down the regime, but it sure will help them fight the good fight.

And it sure will have to be a good and hard fight, cause Khameni is one strong person who does NOT want to let go of his power, and neither does his regime.

marinelife's avatar

@mattbrowne I have yet to see actual statistical evidence that the election was rigged. I think it is premature to call it an illegal regime.

I do think the violence against the protestors is inexcusable.

mattbrowne's avatar

@Marina – They won’t be any formal evidence if a recount remains forbidden. As I said, I can live with calling the regime most possibly illegitimate.

phoenyx's avatar

There is enough evidence that Iranian people are willing to risk violence, imprisonment, and death.

ABoyNamedBoobs03's avatar

Neda, the voice. it’s too perfect.

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