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January 22, 2004
Iran: Political Violence Begins

The political clash between the rigid, ultraconservative mullahs of the Guardian Council and Iranian reformers escalated into violence today, thanks to Hezb' Allah and their allies:

A 200-strong gang of political radicals attacked a meeting of Iranian reformists yesterday in the first outbreak of serious violence since moderates were barred from forthcoming elections. Members of the radical Islamic Hezbollah movement burst into a hall in Hamedan, western Iran. They disrupted a meeting called to discuss the disqualification of 3,605 predominantly reformist candidates from next month's general elections.

The violence erupted after a speaker accused the Guardian Council, the unelected clerical body that vetoed the candidates, of disregarding an order by the supreme religious leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei for the disqualifications to be reviewed. "Some 200 people attacked the podium, broke the microphone and beat people," said one witness.

The aggression of Hezb' Allah reveals true nature of the Iranian regime. The Guardian Council must feel their grip on power threatened, and just as the Nazis did in the 1930s, they sent terrorists to intimidate and coerce their citizens into knuckling under. It proves that the GC has no intellectual basis for their arbitrary decision to disqualify thousands of candidates -- indeed, no intellectual basis for their position in Iranian society. Resorting to thuggery absolutely demonstrates their tyrannous position over Iranian society and should put to lie any notion of free Iranian democracy under their current system.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at January 22, 2004 9:08 PM

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