#Iran takes advantage of #Egypt ‘s #Jan25 protests to crack down on #iranian dissidents #iranelections #freeiran

Iran Cracks Down While Egypt Cracks Up – By Barbara Slavin | Foreign Policy

http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2011/01/31/iran_cracks_down_while_egypt_cracks_up

….”While the world’s attention has been riveted by Arab uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt this month, Iran’s government has taken the opportunity to execute a record number of prisoners in an apparent bid to head off the return of the dramatic street protests that pushed President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s government to the brink in June 2009. Meanwhile, Iranian officials have been spinning the turmoil in the Arab world as a victory for Iran and a replay of Iran’s 1979 revolution against the U.S. -backed shah. But the mass protests that are ricocheting around the region –spread in part by Facebook, Twitter, text messaging, and satellite television –cut more than one way for Tehran. They remind Iranians of their own recent failed attempt to dislodge an increasingly authoritarian government. “…

…”The crackdown could be in part an effort to pre -empt more demonstrations as Iran on Jan. 31 begins the commemoration of the 32nd anniversary of the Islamic Revolution. The climax of the so -called “10 days of dawn” that began with Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini’s return from exile in 1979 is Feb. 11, the day the shah’s last government fell. Last year, Iran also made a point of executing several political prisoners before that date. This January, Ghaemi said, the Iranian government executed 83 people, including on Jan. 29 the first dual national deliberately killed in years: an Iranian-Dutch woman, Zahra Bahrami.”…..

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