1:47 pm: Aid to supreme leader warns everything would collapse if regime changes — L.A. Times
Mohammad Mohammadian, a midranking cleric who heads Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s office of university affairs, acknowledged simmering discontent over the vote, which sparked massive protests and a violent crackdown last month.
“We cannot order public opinion to get convinced,” Mohammadian said, according to the Mehr news agency. “Certain individuals are suspicious about the election result, and we have to shed light on the realities and respond to their questions.” […]
Many within the establishment who harbor doubts about the election fear that a continuation of the unrest could undo the Islamic Republic.
“If even certain rights have been denied throughout the election process, nobody should make such a fuss,” said Mohammadian, the supreme leader’s aide. “If the regime changes, everything would collapse.”
12:55 pm: A warning about Facebook and how to protect yourself
A scary anecdote from Iran. A trusted colleague – who is married to an Iranian-American and would thus prefer to stay anonymous – has told me of a very disturbing episode that happened to her friend, another Iranian-American, as she was flying to Iran last week. On passing through the immigration control at the airport in Tehran, she was asked by the officers if she has a Facebook account. When she said “no”, the officers pulled up a laptop and searched for her name on Facebook. They found her account and noted down the names of her Facebook friends. [From foreignpolicy.com]
Anyone concerned about something like this happening to them should be aware that Facebook has extensive privacy controls.
To make it so that only your friends can see your profile, go to: http://www.facebook.com/privacy/?view=profile
To limit what information (such as your friends list) non-friends can see when they search for your name, go to: http://www.facebook.com/privacy/?view=search
12:30 pm: Must Read – “Inside the Iranian Crackdown”
Farnaz Fassihi tells the story of one basiji and his sense of duty to the Islamic Revolution:
“It wasn’t about elections anymore,” says Mr. Moradani, a short, skinny man with pitch-black hair and a beard. “I was defending my country and our revolution and Islam. Everything was at risk.”
And the personal price he paid:
For Mr. Moradani, the biggest shock during the election turmoil came in his personal life. He had recently gotten engaged to a young woman from a devout, conservative family. A week into the protests, he says, his fiancée called him with an ultimatum. If he didn’t leave the Basij and stop supporting Mr. Ahmadinejad, he recalls her saying, she wouldn’t marry him.
He told her that was impossible. “I suffered a real emotional blow,” he says. “She said to me, ‘Go beat other people’s children then,’ and ‘I don’t want to have anything to do with you,’ and hung up on me.
Read the whole story at the Wall Street Journal.
11:00 am: Iran preparing negotiating proposal for talks with the west
“The package can be a good basis for talks with the West. The package will contain Iran’s stances on political, security and international issues,” Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said during a news conference in Tehran, without giving further details.