Iran: how can the movement go forward?

Discussion in 'News And Current Events' started by, Jun 18, 2009.

  1. Member

    By Alan Woods, Thursday, 18 June 2009

    What we are witnessing in Iran is a full-blown popular revolution. However, in order to set its stamp on the movement, the working class must participate in the front line. The movement will stand or fall to the degree that the working class is able to lead it.

    On July 14 1789, a force of nearly 1000 Parisians stormed the Bastille, a medieval prison now used to hold political prisoners. When he heard about the attack, King Louis XVI asked Is it a revolt? No sire, said a nearby noble, It is a revolution.

    Slowly but surely the reality is dawning on western commentators that what we are witnessing in Iran is not merely a riot or a protest movement. It is a full-blown popular revolution. Slowly but surely the same frightening thought is penetrating the heads of even the most obtuse reactionaries in the regime of Teheran.

    Those most frightened of all of the idea of revolution are the men who are theoretically leading it. Yesterday Mousavi called on people not to demonstrate in order to save their lives. The result was another day of street protests. Today he is calling on the demonstrators to go to the mosques today to mourn the people killed on Monday. This is a transparent attempt to get people off the streets and take the steam out of the mass movement. But for now the movement shows no signs of running out of steam.

    At present, the nominal leader of the movement is Mir Hussein Mousavi, but this is only a historical accident and it will not last. The anger and discontent of the masses, which has accumulated over decades, required a focal point and found it in the protests centered around the leading opposition candidate, who has been pushed by the masses to go further than he intended in his opposition to the government. The current crisis was inspired by common anger over a national election but has developed far beyond that and can end up by posing the question of power.

    The revolutionary movement is gathering strength. Every day the authorities warn people to keep off the streets and every day people come out onto the streets. Every day Mousavi calls off the demonstration and every day the demonstration takes place. These mass demonstrations, held in silence, are acting as a powerful magnet that attracts growing support.

    The movement started with the most militant and courageous elements, with the heroic Iranian students as a hard core. But to the degree that citizens see that the demonstrations are continuing, and that the authorities they so feared are powerless to stop them, large numbers of ordinary men and women find the courage to join in. Once on the streets, they get a sense of their own power. By degrees they lose their fear. They grow in stature. Their heads are no longer bowed to the ground. Through these silent demonstrations the masses are finding their voice and the silent protests become a deafening roar.

    That is the reason why Mousavi, having failed twice to demobilize the mass movement, has resorted to the tactic of declaring today a day of mourning. But the history of revolutions shows that even days of mourning can be dangerous affairs. Large numbers of people, even when gathered in mosques, can become very angry when they are invited to meditate on the fate of their comrades who have fallen in the battle against a ruthless tyranny. They may listen to Mousavi and go to the mosques. But what will happen when they come out?

    The Iranian government tolerated student-led uprisings in 1999 and 2003 for only a few days before unleashing fearful repression, sending Basij vigilantes onto campuses, where they flung a few students from the windows; smashed heads with bricks, chains or truncheons; and jailed many. Immediately after the elections on Friday, they tried similar intimidation tactics but there is little result. This time it is different.

    Iranian state news reports of seven people killed in various cities were intended to deter another major antigovernment rally on Tuesday. The result was not the intended and the demonstration on Tuesday was followed further protests on Wednesday. The government will have a lot of trouble bringing about a swift end to the demonstrations as it did on previous occasions. This time the situation is very different. We recall the words of that French aristocrat to the King: Sire, it is not a revolt. It is a revolution!


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  2. Incorrect. It doesn't need one sector of society to hijack it, it will succeed provided it can generate as much support as possible from as many sectors of Iranian society as possible.
  3. Iran needs to ask themslelves if they want to continue on the road of hyper-inflation.

    This road usually ends in starvation....
  4. Having one class come in, overshadow and hijack this revolution is a BAD idea, considering that is basically what happened in 1979, and you see where that went. Plus I don't think the protesters would have a positive opinion of Socialism right now considering Chavez opening backed Amedenijad.

    The Iranian's need a unified revolution, one of upper,lower,and middle classes working together to take down the real enemy which is Amedenijad, the Ayatollah, and the Mullahs sitting in their little tower. This should not be one class of people trying to take over/overthrow every other class and society in the country.

    This revolution through peaceful means has already acheived so much, I mean they have police officers siding with them (not all of the police though) the Mullahs are becoming divided and turning against the Ayatollah and Amedenijad. If they can get members of the military on their side then the Revolution will be unstoppable.

    Plus, in an un-biased opinion, name me a Socialist country that is democratic and isn't as, or more repressive than Iran?
  5. No, I take back part of my last statement. The Iranians can choose themselves what kind of Government they want, we shouldn't force on them what we think they should have.
  6. Artaban Member

    what is the protesters weakness to form a revolution?!

    what is the most weakness point of protesters is "their goal"!
    this protest start with a good motivative goal, but can't continue this way!
    what they will protest for, just after that govt accept to recount votes or even re-elect president?!!! all of these thing while destroy simply!

    Sire, it is not a revolution (yet!). It is just a protest by now as I see!!

    and since protest leaders are from the govt (and IRI basis formers) after all and all the way! I have no perspective really how it will continue to end with a good thing happening for Iranians and the world!?!

    but we have to wait and see... and btw, even after things calm out, I like to think it is an "START" for a revolution, :)
  7. cnewq5 Member

    Of course Iranians have the right to choose their future. More, they are the only ones who can choose. No outside imposition on a country or people ever succeeded permanently, as the history of colonialism shows.

    As for classes or internal forces hijacking the revolution, that's exactly what happened in 1979. That was also a popular revolution, hijacked, then drowned in blood by the mullahs.

    But class leadership is not the same as domination. There are good reasons why workers can and should become the leading force in the Iranian revolution.

    The article lined here looks at the history of Iran since the 1979 revolution, compares then and now and draws conclusions:

    There are other articles on Iran linked to the right of the article on that page.

    One key paragraph says:

    To co-ordinate the struggle against the regime and for such an assembly shoras (councils) should be created, workers shoras, students shoras, shoras in the shantytowns- all made up of freely elected and instantly recallable delegates, free from any guardianship of the local mosques or imams. IN short they should be just like those originally created in 1978 and 1979. They should create militias able to defend themselves from the Basiji and the Revolutionary Guards who will carry on, drowning the protests in blood in order to maintain the regime in power as long as they alone are armed and the masses are unarmed.

    Other key points are: for a general strike, constituent assembly, building independent leadership, a revolutionary workers' and youth party.

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