Agam's Gecko
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
THAT OLD TAM FEELING **updated x3**

nd that stands for Tian An Men. But you knew that.

Image: Wasserman / Boston Globe
Iranians had been further threatened with violence today, and it looks like the Ayatollah delivered on it. The free elections movement attempted to gather at Baharestan Square, near the parliament, in late afternoon. Khamenei's forces were out in force.

Citizen journalist persiankiwi was in the square, and I take the liberty of taking his series of tweets out of crimped-speak.
Just in from Baherestan Square, the situation today is terrible. They beat the people like animals. I've seen many people with broken arms, legs or head. Blood is everywhere, and pepper gas. It's like war.

They were waiting for us, they all have guns and riot uniforms. It was like a mouse trap, people being shot like animals. I saw 7 or 8 militia beating one woman with a baton on the ground. She had no defense, nothing. I'm sure that she is dead.

So many people are arrested, young and old. They take people away, we lose our group. People run into alleys, and militia are standing there waiting. From two sides they attack people in the middle of the alleys.

All the shops were closed. Nowhere to go, they follow people with helicopters. Smoke and fire is everywhere.
An Iranian student, who had been twittering under his own name before things began heating up, stopped broadcasting on Saturday afternoon. His latest entry.
I'm going to sleep a little before joining with the others, please pray for all people of Iran & wish us peace & freedom

5:55 PM Jun 20th from web
More from persiankiwi just now as I'm about to post this. I'll give them to you raw (hover your mouse over the icon here for current):
rumour they are tracking high use of phone lines to find internet users - must move from here now - #Iranelection34 minutes ago from web

reports of street fighting in Vanak Sq, Tajrish sq, Azadi Sq - now - #Iranelection - Sea of Green - Allah Akbar29 minutes ago from web

in Baharestan we saw militia with axe choping ppl like meat - blood everywhere - like butcher - Allah Akbar - #Iranelection RT RT RT27 minutes ago from web

they catch ppl with mobile - so many killed today - so many injured - Allah Akbar - they take one of us - #Iranelection25 minutes ago from web

Lalezar Sq is same as Baharestan - unbelevable - ppls murdered everywhere - #Iranelection24 minutes ago from web

they pull away the dead into trucks - like factory - no human can do this - we beg Allah for save us - #Iranelection20 minutes ago from web

Everybody is under arrest & cant move - Mousavi - Karroubi even rumour Khatami is in house guard - #Iranelection -15 minutes ago from web

we must go - dont know when we can get internet - they take 1 of us, they will torture and get names - now we must move fast - #Iranelection9 minutes ago from web

thank you ppls 4 supporting Sea of Green - pls remember always our martyrs - Allah Akbar - Allah Akbar - Allah Akbar #Iranelection6 minutes ago from web
*UPDATE*: (23:30)

*UPDATE-2*: (01:40) CNN is playing around with the videos — when I posted that at 11:30 pm, it was four minutes long. They cut off the most gripping descriptions of the carnage and her heart-rending pleas for help, right after she tells of the large mob emerging from a mosque to beat people. They trimmed it down to the first minute.

I'll leave it up there in case the following YouTube version doesn't stay up. This is the full segment. It's in a wide format and I can't make it any smaller, so if your browser window is too narrow and it doesn't appear directly below, scroll down past the end of the sidebar to see it:

*UPDATE-3*: (25/06/09: 15:30) I'm feeling really annoyed that CNN has apparently deep-sixed most of this interview. The one-minute family-friendly version replaced the four-minute original, as near as I can tell, within two hours of its first airing. Only the truncated interview has been broadcast today, at least on CNN International.

I know that some people can't view embedded videos, so for the non-clickers here is a transcript, partly done by The Lede Blog and finished by me.
I was going towards Baharestan with my friends…. This was everyone, not just supporters of one candidate or another, everyone — all of my friends, we were going to Baharestan to express our opposition to these killings these days, and demanding freedom. But the black-clad police stopped everyone at Saadi. They emptied the buses that were taking people there and let the private cars go on…. We went on until Ferdowsi then, all of a sudden, some 500 people with clubs and woods, they came out of [Hedayat] mosque and they poured into the streets and they started beating everyone.

[This is where CNN has trimmed off the rest of the interview, both from their online video offering and in its broadcasts.]

And they tried to beat everyone on Saadi bridge and throwing them off of the bridge…. And everyone also on the sidewalks. They beat a woman so savagely that she was drenched in blood and her husband, who was watching the scene, he just fainted. And I also saw people shooting, I mean the security forces shooting on people, on Lalezar. And of course people were afraid… the security forces …

They were beating people like — hell. This was a massacre. They were trying to beat people so that they would die. They were cursing — saying very bad words to everyone. They were beating old men. And this was — this was exactly a massacre. You should stop this. You should stop this. You should help the people of Iran who demand freedom. You should help us. …

[Here ends The Lede's transcript, the rest is added by yours truly.]

[nearly speechless interviewer: "How many of you were there in this terrible situation?"]

There were thousands of people on the streets, but it was me and ten of my friends.

[interviewer: "And you said the security forces were shooting at the people? Did you see anybody injured by gunfire?"]

No, as I explained earlier I didn't see, I heard the shooting and my friends and I we just scattered. We heard the shooting near Lalezar and we were near there, and we just ran away. I didn't see again what happened, I'm sure people are dead there but I couldn't see, I couldn't catch the film or anything.

[interviewer relates to her some other received reports of shooting and beating the people "like animals"]

Yes exactly, exactly, exactly. This is what's happening, they beat people so bad. You know in the previous days they are killing students with axe. You know they put the axe through the hearts of young men and it's so... devastating, I don't know how to describe it I can't find the words, but this is horrific. This is genocide, this is a massacre, this is Hitler! And you people should stop it! It's a long time we have been exposed to this and nobody takes action! It's time to act!
If anyone is thinking, "Yeah, that axe thing is just a rumour," brace yourself. ThreatsWatch.Org has posted a photograph taken on Saturday, June 20 (the same day Neda Agha Soltan was murdered). Don't click through until you have prepared yourself to witness gruesome barbarity. If you're in doubt of your ability to handle it, don't. You can't unsee something like that.


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