Posted by: bahareiran | February 12, 2011

US: Iran scared of the will of its people

WASHINGTON, by Stephen Collinson , February 11, 2011 (AFP) – The United States pivoted from delight at Egypt’s revolt to hiking political pressure on arch-foe Iran Friday, charging that the leadership in Tehran was “scared of the will of its people.”

The White House said that Iranian leaders should give their people the same chance to express their will as Egyptians seized for themselves — and noted that instead, Tehran had threatened to kill any protesters.

Iran’s government was “quite frankly scared of the will of its people,” White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said, hinting that protests that had erupted in Egypt could spread to Iran.

“We know that what they really are scared of is exactly what might happen,” Gibbs said as Egyptians celebrated their revolt, which came on the 32nd anniversary of the Islamic revolution in Iran on February 11, 1979.

Gibbs spoke as the tumultuous political events in Egypt, which brought about the downfall of president Hosni Mubarak, became the latest flashpoint for the bitter 30-year rivalry between Washington and the Islamic Republic.

Earlier, the White House had issued a statement condemning Iran for jamming the BBC’s Persian-language television channel, ostensibly over coverage of demonstrations in Egypt.

“The recent arrests and effort to block international media outlets underscores the hypocrisy of the Iranian leadership,” National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor said.

“For all of its empty talk about Egypt, the government of Iran should allow the Iranian people the same universal right to peacefully assemble, demonstrate and communicate in Tehran that the people are exercising in Cairo.”

The subtext for the current showdown between Washington and Tehran is the deadly crackdown launched by Iranian authorities when hundreds of thousands took to the streets of Tehran and other cities to protest against official results giving Ahmadinejad a second term in a June 2009 presidential election.

Dozens of Iranians were killed, hundreds wounded and scores arrested by security forces during the protests which shook the pillars of the Islamic regime.

At the time, the Obama administration was accused of being too slow to the embrace the cause of the protesters, as it sought to avoid injecting the United States into the drama, though ultimately vigorously condemned the crackdown.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: