A new day begins in Iran, but that has not translated into a new President. In fact, it appears that Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has cemented his power and control over the Iranian polity and has taken to arresting opposition leaders and even Mirhussein Mousavi, the opposition candidate for President.
Through it all, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said Iranians should acknowledge President Ahmadinejad's landslide victory, which he termed a "divine assessment."
That's right folks, this could be little more than a purification of the Islamic revolution, clearing the decks of those who might oppose Ahmadinejad and the mullahs intentions.
Based on that statement, it appears that Ahamdinejad is working in conjunction with at least the Supreme Ayatollah to produce the outcome that the mullahs want, regardless of the voting.
In fact, there are three general scenarios that should be kept in mind. The first is that Ahmadinejad stole the election, in conjunction with the mullahs. The second is that there was a coup, and Ahmadinejad kept Khamenei on as a figurehead and to preserve the facade of power. The third is that Ahmadinejad actually won the election because Tehran is not the entirety of the country of Iran. Just because Ahmadinejad lost Tehran doesn't mean that he didn't lose the rest of the country.
Right now, there's insufficient information to discern which of these scenarios carries the most weight. A coup and a purification of the Islamic revolution are both plausible. Stealing elections isn't unheard of, but Iranian elections are generally seen as clean, so this would be a first.
You wrote Mousavi, they read Ahmadinejad.
Ahmadinejad is playing his part, claiming that the elections were real and free. Ahmadinejad was apparently real serious about taking free reign of the government despite the electoral outcomes. Ahamdinejad is striking out at the various media reports claiming that the election was rigged.
In a televised speech Sunday, Ahmadinejad said that the Iranian elections were an "example for democracy, based on sacred humanitarian values," adding that Iran was "a brave nation" and that it "will not be intimidated by threats."
"The Iranian public hates lies and injustice and is resistant to the psychological warfare in the media," he said. Ahmadinejad also blamed the Western media for broadcasting "made-up news" as part of its anti-Iranian propaganda.
Ahmadinejad slammed the West for "expecting our nation to cave in to its propaganda. The world must realize that the Iranian people are smart and the Iranian nation is aware of its goals.
"The Iranian people have expressed their desire in an election. In a liberal democracy you have several parties that rule the people – here it is the people who rule. The Iranian nation will not let others determine its fate.
Protests continue flaring in Tehran, but reports are spotty since the government has shut down various means of communication and Internet access is spotty.
All this supports the ongoing consideration that Ahmadinejad was a new level of bad-crazy even by Iranian standards. His genocidal rhetoric has the backing of Khameni, and they're going to continue down this path, including obtaining nuclear weapons and the means to deploy them against their various enemies, including the US, Israel, and other Arab/Muslim countries.
Kevin Aylward has a roundup of reaction, and notes that the White House was mugged by reality yet again, after believing that there would be an Obama effect from his Middle East speech.
If this indeed turns out to be the Iranian version of Tienanmen Square, and the revolt is put down by Ahmadinejad, regime change will be that much more difficult since the elements of the Iranian society that would have been in a position to effectuate the change are no longer capable of doing so.
And for those pining for Mousavi to have won, there's nothing to suspect that he would have changed Iran's course on nuclear weapons, missile technologies, or confrontation with the West. He'd simply be a different face of the same regime that has been at war with the United States and the West since 1979.
Michelle Malkin has more, and links to an updating feed at Tumblr. Hot Air has the quotes of the day so far.
Video of the police swarming in on protesters, who appear to have been just congregating:
Meanwhile, other video shows riot police leaving en masse, and apparently regrouping:
One more video, from overnight:
Additional reports indicate that the Iranians are jamming broadcasts about the Iranian elections and the situation inside the country. The BBC says that they've traced back the jamming to the Iranian regime.
The corporation said television and radio services had been affected from 1245 GMT Friday onwards by "heavy electronic jamming" which had become "progressively worse".I don't think Ahmadinejad cares what the rest of the world thinks right now, let alone that his thugs jamming broadcasts are violating laws relating to satellite usage and broadcasts. Right now, Ahmadinejad is concerned about securing his position and eliminating the opposition.
Satellite technicians had traced the interference to Iran, it said.
The satellites its uses in the Middle East to broadcast BBC Persian television to Iran were being affected, meaning that audiences in Iran, the Middle East and Europe would likely experience disruption.
BBC Arabic television and other language services had also experienced transmission problems, the corporation said.
There will be blood. This report indicates that Ahmadinejad is engaging in a coup, and that it's revealed a schism between the various revolutionaries and mullahs that the existing political structures in Iran can't cope with.
My contact predicted serious violence at the highest levels. He said that Ahmadinejad is now genuinely scared of Iranian society and of Mousavi and Rafsanjani. The level of tension between them has gone beyond civil limits -- and my contact said that Ahmadinejad will try to have them imprisoned and killed.The fight is between true believers - none of which are friendly to the West. Any attempt to put the shine of the word reformer on any of this is a misguided attempt to put Western values on the Islamic revolution and the mullahs in charge.
Likewise, he said, Rafsanjani, Khatami, and Mousavi know this -- and thus are using all of the instruments at their control within Iran's government apparatus to fight back -- but given Khamenei's embrace of Ahmadinejad's actions in the election and victory, there is no recourse but to try and remove Khamenei. Some suggest that Rafsanjani will count votes to see if there is a way to formally dislodge Khamenei -- but this source I met said that all of these political giants have resources at their disposal to "do away with" those that get in the way.
He predicted that the so-called reformist camp -- who are not exactly humanists in the Western liberal sense -- may try and animate efforts to decapitate the regime and "do away with" Ahmadinejad and even the Supreme Leader himself.
I am not convinced that this source "knows" these things will definitely happen but am convinced of his credentials and impressed with the seriousness of the discussion we had and his own concern that there may be political killing sprees ahead.
Jules Crittenden links. Thanks!
This is the foreign policy expertise that President Obama put on his ticket? Joe Biden, who can barely express a coherent idea about what the real political situation in Iran has been for more than 30 years - a mullahocracy that runs "elections" among its chosen candidates with no real freedoms.