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Helping the Iranian Protestors:

This seems like a good idea for Twitterphiles:

Do you twitter? Change your twitter setting to GMT +3:30 (Tehran time) and your location to any city in Iran. If all of us are Iranians then it is a little harder for government censors to track down Iranian tweeters. (See list of Iranian cities at http://is.gd/13UCt.)

H/T: Kathleen Bergin.

mcbain:
Professor Bernstein will blend in perfectly with the rest of the Tehran twitterers.

great idea though.
6.22.2009 1:11pm
Fub:
A nice new twist on "I'm Spartacus!".

I hope it succeeds.
6.22.2009 1:12pm
rosetta's stones:
Man, the mullahs don't need to patrol the innertubes to find malcontents, from the looks of things, they just need to go out in the streets and load up the paddywagons.

Nice thought though, just in case.

Lookin' bad for the mullahs. When people stay home from work and demonstrate, you know they really mean it.

The Revolutionary Guard can shoot, but unlike China, that will spell their doom, I suspect. They would likely be hunted down and slaughtered, if true revolution occurs. It's exceedingly tricky, climbing down from a throne of bayonets.
6.22.2009 1:18pm
[insert here] delenda est:
Please can we call them 'twits'? Nothing personal, but one must seize life's little opportunities...
6.22.2009 1:28pm
Yope (mail):
How much trouble are the Mullahs really in? These student-protesters are not armed to stand up to the Basij and the Revolutionary Guards are they? It's not like Pakistan where everyone has an AK and if the shit hit the fan any village could raise a lot of hell against troops.
6.22.2009 1:42pm
A Law Dawg:
It's exceedingly tricky, climbing down from a throne of bayonets.


Climbing down is easy. The cuts come when you are kicked out of the chair.
6.22.2009 2:07pm
A Law Dawg:
The link above is, while well-meaning, obsolete by now.

Ground zero for Netizens looking to pitch in to the effort is http://iran.whyweprotest.net/
6.22.2009 2:09pm
John Anthes (mail):
It has been interesting to watch this suggestion pass along the web. I first saw it about four days ago, and this is (I believe) the third reference I have seen to it. But I don't think that any of these sites have anything in common as to subject matter. Viral.
6.22.2009 2:13pm
Incredulous:
Isn't the distinctive feature of Iranian twitters that they are sent from inside Iran?
6.22.2009 2:13pm
butisnt:
I'm certainly sympathetic to the idea, but from a technology standpoint it seems dubious.
If the regime is tracking down twitter dissent by timezone and city, then the easier solution is for the protesters to change their timezone and location.
If the regime is tracking down
twitter dissent by IP or some other data marker, then us changing our twitter timezone/location seems worthless.
6.22.2009 2:18pm
A Law Dawg:
Isn't the distinctive feature of Iranian twitters that they are sent from inside Iran?


Something not trivially determined.
6.22.2009 2:19pm
A Law Dawg:
If the regime is tracking down
twitter dissent by IP or some other data marker, then us changing our twitter timezone/location seems worthless.


Iran long ago (meaning days) blocked access to Twitter's page; what it has not blocked it the multitude (10,000 by the last count I've seen) of netizen-volunteered proxy servers masking the traffic and IP sources.
6.22.2009 2:27pm
rosetta's stones:

"How much trouble are the Mullahs really in?"


Not tons, I'd agree. Their guy wins, regardless, even if he's from another mullah faction, and not Ahmadinnerjacket.

But, to the extent that these demonstrations deduct from mullah power, they matter. I doubt we're seeing the religious police out in the street these past few days, for example. If they return without being tarred and feathered, you'll know nothing's changed.

Guns matter, but communication even more so. There's only so many loyal mullah followers to go around, and they can't be everywhere at once. And the mullahs can't very well shut down cell phones and the innertubes without disrupting their economy, any more than we could do so. This is a tough nut for them to crack.

If it keeps up, the loyalists will have to shoot, or the mullahs will have to give in a bit, somehow.
6.22.2009 2:31pm
A Law Dawg:
But, to the extent that these demonstrations deduct from mullah power, they matter. I doubt we're seeing the religious police out in the street these past few days, for example.


From what I've read it's been the paramilitary militia (Basiji) and the Revolutionary Guard doing the street patrols. Normal police had their guns taken away last week.
6.22.2009 2:34pm
rosetta's stones:
Law Dog, when I mention the religious police, it's the guys out in the streets keeping women veiled and un-thonged and unmade-up, for example. Dang barbarians. They're kind of a litmus test of sorts, and if they stay gone this time, it'll mean something.
6.22.2009 2:46pm
A Law Dawg:
Law Dog, when I mention the religious police, it's the guys out in the streets keeping women veiled and un-thonged and unmade-up, for example.


Very often that is the Basiji.
6.22.2009 2:55pm
kunkmiester (mail):
Find translations of the founding documents for them to read. My Google-fu is weak when it comes to other languages.

Also, this:
http://globalguerrillas.typepad.com/
Will be very useful. Read carefully, and translate the useful stuff.

So very few of us can do much to help those that have the courage. We'll have enough trouble at home soon enough. Godspeed to the brave in all countries.
6.22.2009 3:02pm
rarango (mail):
Rosetta's stones and law dog--being totally unfamiliar with Iran, but having experience with the mutawaeen in Saudi Arabia, I assume Iran has a similar body of enforcers? Is that the Basiji?

And: can anyone recommend a site that covers the situation in Iran and goes through the players? The Asian times ran a good piece last week, but my take it is hard to get a dispassionate analysis of the situation there.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
6.22.2009 3:09pm
A Law Dawg:

Rarango:
6.22.2009 3:28pm
A Law Dawg:
Bah, botched the link:

6.22.2009 3:29pm
A Law Dawg:
Well, whatever. Go here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Basiji
6.22.2009 3:29pm
rarango (mail):
law dog: thanks
6.22.2009 3:43pm
John Moore (www):

Rosetta's stones and law dog--being totally unfamiliar with Iran, but having experience with the mutawaeen in Saudi Arabia, I assume Iran has a similar body of enforcers? Is that the Basiji?

I believe the Basiji are substantially different from the mutaween. The mutaween restrict themselves to enforcing Sharia.

Basiji are a paramilitary force involved in suppression of domestic dissent and international terrorism. I think they are far more a political than religious organ.
6.22.2009 4:09pm
rarango (mail):
John Moore: thanks also! Based on the wiki that law dawg led me to, sounds like your assessment is on target.
6.22.2009 4:54pm
Leo Marvin (mail):
A simple expression of solidarity everyone can afford. I hope it catches on.

What's Twitter?
6.22.2009 5:58pm
LarryA (mail) (www):
Dang. I keep getting this image of Paul Revere texting.
The Regulars are coming!
The Regulars are coming!
6.22.2009 6:49pm
Noah (mail):
Aren't you, by doing this, making it harder to determine legitimate tweeters trying to send out important information? If you further cloud the air then you further obfuscate first hand accounts. Additionally, as pointed out above and by the interesting articles about the Nokia-Siemens system Iran installed last fall, time zone and location in a twitter account has no - repeat: NO, NONE, ZILCH, NADA - effect on Iranian technological surveillance. They doing deep packet scanning on all data traveling in and out of Iran's trunk. The only other way data is moving is via sat phone. Sorry guys, cute idea but pointless.
6.22.2009 10:16pm
mcbain:
Siemens is supporting a fascist regime? Shocking
6.22.2009 10:26pm
The River Temoc (mail):
These student-protesters are not armed to stand up to the Basij and the Revolutionary Guards are they?

The situation in Tehran has clearly gone beyond a handful of student protesters in one section of the capital city. That makes it very different from Beijing 1989.
6.22.2009 10:31pm
mcbain:
Larry A.

I believe Paul Revere would text

rgs r cmin.
rgs r cmin.
6.22.2009 10:33pm
Floridan:
What is this, ninth grade?

Maybe next we can send fake 911 calls.
6.22.2009 10:46pm
Desiderius:
LM,

"What's Twitter?"

A human face stamping on a boot - forever.

Floridian,

Your point?
6.22.2009 11:03pm
Floridan:
My point, Desiderius, is that this so-called "good idea" is nothing more than a juvenile stunt, which wouldn't be so bad if its whole premise didn't involve people safe in their American homes (or their parents homes) stirring the pot in a far-off country where people are being killed.

The only saving grace is that, as with the concept, the technical aspects of this scheme seem flawed.
6.23.2009 7:55am
The Insurance (mail) (www):


This tells you how to protest against the Iranian government's monitoring system. Read through, pass to any influential Germans you know
6.23.2009 8:38am
The Insurance (mail) (www):
http://sites.google.com/site/shrtmdr/
6.23.2009 8:38am
rosetta's stones:
Not sure it'll help the Iranian protesters directly, but now would be an opportune time to cull some of the Revolutionary Guard in Iraq, who are an existential threat force multiplier to our 100,000+ troops over there.

This'd be a chance to thin that herd a bit, if you subscribe to the Rahm Emanuel philosophy of never letting a good crisis go to waste. The mullahs are a bit preoccupied right now, as is the Guard no doubt. We could go Luca Brazzi on 'em, and seek out and garrot a bunch of those types. Supposedly, that's what the Israelis did in the Beka Valley a couple years ago. Since they were going into Lebanon anyway, they organized a little excursion to Hizbollah HQ and training, and snuffed out a few dozen highly trained Iranian Guard special operators, and snatched documents.

I doubt Obama has these tactics in his skillset, however.
6.23.2009 10:56am
[insert here] delenda est:
You doubt? Strong phrasing worthy of Obama himself...
6.23.2009 2:54pm
Leo Marvin (mail):
Des

A human face stamping on a boot - forever.

They keep coming up with new words for that, don't they?
6.23.2009 5:07pm
Desiderius:
LM,

When I talk about Progressives being the real reactionaries/conservatives, Floridian is the sort of which I speak. He is legion.

Archie Bunker would be proud to have turned so many meatheads, especially unawares.
6.23.2009 5:36pm
Desiderius:
See also. Make sure to read the comments.
6.23.2009 9:11pm
J.R.L.:
If you really wanted to help, shouldn't you do something that will have a real impact like wearing a ribbon or putting a magnet on your car?
6.23.2009 10:40pm
Brian G (mail) (www):
I don't think it is our business to get involved. They didn't get involved in our 2000 election, which was far more corrupt than Iran's election. I have little doubt that the people of Iran voted for Ahmadinejad because they want to live under Islamic law. Just because the right-wingers in this country think that no one wants to live under anything but Biblical rule doesn't mean that everyone else wants to.

No matter who ends up winning that election, at least Iran won't have to live under a cowboy who bombs sovereign countries for sport and to make his buddies at Haliburton and Blackwater rich, and who throws people who dissent and refuse to just lay down and die into a gulag and waterboard them for kicks.
6.24.2009 2:10am
Floridan:
Desiderius: "When I talk about Progressives being the real reactionaries/conservatives, Floridian is the sort of which I speak. He is legion."

As much as I'm shocked to write this, yes, in this case I am conservative. I just don't see the value in jumping into a situation about which you have only the vaguest notion of what's actually going on without being sure that your actions will not adversely impact the cause you favor or the best interests of our nation.

I repeat what I wrote before: "juvenile stunt."
6.24.2009 9:24am
Sunshine is good:
I thought the boot was stomping on the face but call me progressive...
6.24.2009 1:03pm
Desiderius:
Sunshine,

"I thought the boot was stomping on the face but call me progressive..."

It is. That's the joke.
6.24.2009 5:17pm

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