Iran Burning, Pt. 6


Here’s a shocking video this morning of a man with an automatic weapon firing on a crowd of demonstrators and then throwing some kind of gasoline bomb down on them.

Since this YouTube is part of a news segment I’m not sure how long they’ll let it stay up before they pull it.  The first minute is the most important part:

And this next video shows a man on a rooftop opening fire on another group of demonstrators–you can see one man getting shot before being carried off:

The killing of demonstrators is part of a disturbing trend, as the New York Times reports:

The daytime protests across the Islamic republic have been largely peaceful. But Iranians shudder at the violence unleashed in their cities at night, with the shadowy vigilantes known as Basijis beating, looting and sometimes gunning down protesters they tracked during the day.


The vigilantes plan to take their fight into the daylight on Friday, with the public relations department of Ansar Hezbollah, the most public face of the Basij, announcing that they planned a public demonstration to expose the “seditious conspiracy” being carried out by “agitating hooligans.”

“We invite the vigilant people who are always in the arena to make their loud objections heard in response to the babbling of this tribe,” said the announcement, carried on the Web site Parsine.

The announcement could be the first indication that the government was taking its gloves off, Iranian analysts noted, because up to this point the Basijis, usually deployed as the shock troops to end any public protests, have been working in stealth.


It is the special brigades of the Revolutionary Guards who right now, especially at night, trap young demonstrators and kill them,” said Mohsen Sazegara, an Iranian exile who helped write the charter for the newly formed Revolutionary Guards in 1979 when he was a young aide to Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. “That is one way the regime avoids the responsibility for these murders. It can say, ‘We don’t know who they are.’

[Emphasis mine]

And Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is also taking a hard line:

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei sided with hardline President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and offered no concessions to the opposition. He effectively closed any chance for a new vote by calling the June 12 election an “absolute victory.”

The speech created a stark choice for candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi and his supporters: Drop their demands for a new vote or take to the streets again in blatant defiance of the man endowed with virtually limitless powers under Iran’s constitution.

Khamenei accused foreign media and Western countries of trying to create a political rift and stir up chaos in Iran.

[Emphasis mine]

Supporters of opposition candidate Mir-Hossein Mousavi are going to great lengths to keep their demonstrations peaceful; many are scheduling rallies to commemorate those who have been killed in the recent violence.

Below, courtesy of HuffPo, these pics show opposition supporters lighting candles in memory of the dead: