torsdag, juli 02, 2009

Where is my Iranian vote?

Anyone who has watched Nahid Persson Sarvestani's documentary "Drottningen och jag" from last year, a surprising tale of encounter between a communist girl and the Iranian exiled empress, would perhaps be less surprised to find both the Iranian communists and royalists coming together to demonstrate against the alleged vote rigging in Iran's current presidential election.

On June 23rd, hundreds of overseas supporters of Iran’s defeated presidential candidate Mirhossein Mousavi, many of them wearing masks, turned out in Stockholm to began an almost daily protest for Iranian democracy and press freedoms, culminating in the break-in and storming of the Iranian embassy in Stockholm several days later.

Some dissenting voices were also heard during the open demonstrations. While I was attending a rally at Sergel's Square, at its conclusion all of a sudden a few pro-government old guards started to yell at a young female protester, who, then, angrily retorted: "I'm not going to be shut up by you orthodox zealots!" Luckily with the police standing by, the argument didn't descend into violence.

I was asked why most of the slogans were exclusively in English, but how many of us could actually tell the difference of Farsi from Arabic just by looking at the written signs? There are other plausible reasons as well, or does it really matter?