The barbarians are at it again

‘Father’ of Iranian blogging faces death penalty:

A Canadian-Iranian blogger credited with starting the blogging movement in Iran faces the death penalty over his writings, two watchdog groups said Thursday.

Hossein Derakhshan was arrested after returning to Iran in November 2008 and charged with “collaborating with enemy states, creating propaganda against the Islamic regime, insulting religious sanctity, and creating propaganda for anti-revolutionary groups,” said Canadian Journalists for Free Expression (CJFE) and PEN Canada.

According to the two organizations, prosecutors are now calling for Derakhshan to face the death penalty after he was convicted by Tehran’s revolutionary court earlier this year.

News of the sentencing request started filtering out on social media sites on Monday, and the CJFE and PEN said they confirmed the reports with his family.

“The proposed sentence is a travesty,” said CJFE president Arnold Amber, calling on the Canadian government to intervene.

“Action must be taken right away because in Iran there is not necessarily a lengthy period before executions can be carried out. We are very concerned,” he added.

Catherine Loubier, spokeswoman for Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister Lawrence Cannon, told AFP that Ottawa was “preoccupied” by reports Derakhshan may be executed and was seeking verification of the facts.

The Canadian government has also sought consular access to him.

However any further help Canada may provide in this case is “limited,” Loubier said, as Tehran does not recognize dual citizenship.

Derakhshan is the third Canadian journalist to be arrested in Iran in recent years. In July 2003, Canadian-Iranian photojournalist Zahra Kazemi died in prison, and Newsweek correspondent Maziar Bahari was briefly detained earlier this year.

6 thoughts on “The barbarians are at it again”

  1. Zahra Kazemi:
    “died in prison” The official Iranian story was that she had fallen while being interrogated, and initially it was said that she may have suffered a stoke.
    Her injuries sustained in the fall included a fractured skull, broken fingers and toes, broken nose, missing fingernails, abdominal bruising that was continuous to her knees, deep scratching on her neck, a smashed ear, flogging of her legs (the skin had separated) and other bruises on her body including internal genital injuries.
    The agents charged with her death were both acquitted. Other government’s observers for her murderer’s trial were refused on the basis of not enough room in the court.

    I don’t share her politics, not even close… but I don’t think she deserved to “die in prison”
    so yeah, it’s deja vu all over again… She was arrested for taking photographs.

  2. Honey, for Zahra Kazemi it was a return to her county of origin. She had entered Iran on an Iranian passport, and Iran doesn’t recognize dual citizenship. At her memorial website, Israel is referred to as Palestine, her photos of Irak all refer to “the occupation” ect… It almost strikes me as the barbarians eating their own.

  3. You just have to wonder about those in the civilized world that believe we are dealing with reasonable people in that section of the world.

    Apparently the recently released American woman Sarah Shourd (one of the 3 hikers detained in Iran) believes a return to that country is somehow a reasonable idea:

    When I heard Obama nearly 2 yrs ago claim he would unclench the fist and deal with these people with an open hand two things popped into my mind:

    1) these people only understand and recognize brute strength … they are embedded in their tribal past and refuse to come forward centuries to a modernity

    2) (both graphic)

    The hand is unclenched before cutting it off. It is “submission” to have an unclenched hand. Also makes the detachment quicker and easier … no sign of resistance or fight. Total submission. Even the young are not left out …

    Oddly, if you read some of the comments left at some of the videos (especially the first vid) people believe this is a good practice to be a deterrent to crime … they think Sharia is a good system of laws and punishment. I would wager these same people are against the death penalty here in our country (after fair trials and numerous appeals) and would claim it doesn’t have the same effect on murder in society.

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