Internet Anthropologist Think Tank: Iran's extraordinary Fri. Prayers, 07.17.09

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    Friday, July 17, 2009

    Iran's extraordinary Fri. Prayers, 07.17.09

    Protesters inside the mosque chanted “Allah o Akbar”, “Azadi… Azadi” (Freedom… Freedom) and slogans against Russia and China. Rafsanjani tried several times to stop people from chanting but the chants continued sporadically. It is worth mentioning that there was a loudspeaker inside the mosque which chanted, “Death to America!”, but every time that slogan was heard, people loudly replied with, “Death to Russia, Death to China!”

    At least two people were shot and one girl was reportedly killed during the protests. Basijis used batons to beat people – even small children and women were not spared. Many women were reportedly stabbed with knives by Basijis dressed as women. Several mosques around the city were packed with Basijis waiting to come out and clash with protesters.

    An advisor to Mousavi has announced that a committee formed by reformists to follow cases of detainees will start operations from Saturday. Families of detainees can contact their office on this phone number: 77637696



    Fri. Prayers:
    Time line:
    13:27 Rafsanjani is speaking of Mohammad, the prophet, and the early days of Islam. This will go on for the first part of his sermon.

    13:34 Rafsanjani is still speaking of Mohammad’s early days as prophet and his attempts to establish rule in Medina.

    13:36 He is reciting a sourah from the Koran and interpreting it.

    13:41 Rafsanjani is getting teary. “The prophet respected the rights of all those under his rule.” He brings an example from the end of the prophet’s life where the prophet comes to the people and asks that if he ever treated anyone unfairly, they speak up and let him know.

    13:44 The prophet felt, during the last years of his life, that animosity was brewing amongst his people [he is crying now]. The prophet felt that his old friends are now enemies.

    13:46 The prophet went to Baghi [where his old friends were buried] and said to them: you are lucky that you are no longer here to see that your old brothers are killing and destroying one another.

    13: 52 May all the oppressors who make innocent people bleed be a witness to eternal condemnation.

    13:55 But coming to our own problems. We started off very well in the competition. Everything went well and smoothly.

    13:56 People became very hopeful. Everything was set for a glorious day. This glory was due to the people. They were the ones who went to the ballot box. And we must be grateful to them.

    13:57 I so very much wish that that path had been continued. But unfortunately, that was not the case. I will now elaborate. We must first see what we [probably the ruling establishment] were after. This is coming from a person who was always by the Imam[Khomeini’s] side [he is referring to himself]. For 60 years. The Imam was always after the people. After getting their approval and their participation. This was the art of the Imam which made him so successful. It took the Imam less than 20 years to get the people to come to the streets.

    13:58 These people, the ones who were behind the Imam, broke the back of the Shah and brought him to his knees.

    13:59 After the victory of the revolution too, we worked on a daily basis with the Imam. Imam would always say that if the system is not backed by the people, nothing would stand.

    14:00 The Imam would always quote the prophet [Muhammad] who would say to Ali [Mohammad’s successor]: leave the people if they do not want you.

    14:02 He is speaking of the Imam’s command to Bazargan to form a temporary government. But the Imam tells him to keep it short to pave the way for the constitution.

    14:03 We agreed that you will stop chanting. If we do not have the votes of the people behind us, we will have nothing. The guardian council, the expediency council, EVERYONE gets their legitimacy from the vote of the people.

    14:04 Without Islam, without a republic, we have nothing. Ali [Imam Ali, the prophet’s successor] waited 19 years until the people came for him.

    [more chants]

    14:05 Stop chanting.

    14:06 Why did the elections come to this? Before the election, near the end, some people doubted what was going to happen. Maybe because of the way the broadcasting corporation behaved.

    14:07 Rafsanjani: Some are chanting and I can’t make out what they say. But I am speaking what you want to hear. I want unity too.

    14:08 I have never acted across party lines, and now too we must search for unity to find a way out of our quandary.

    14:09 I have some suggestions. I have spoken to some members of the the expediency council and the assembly of experts about them too.

    14:10 We must bring back the trust of the people. First of all, everyone must accept the law.

    14:11 We must create a condition so that everyone can speak. We must speak logically. And a part of this is on the shoulders of the broadcasting corporation.

    14:12 The guardian council did not make good use of the extra fives days given to them by the leader.

    14:13 We do not need people in prison for this. Let’s allow them to return to their families.

    [More chants of Allah o Akbar]

    14:14 We must join hands with those who have incurred great loss and try to lesson their pain.

    14:15 We must give freedom to the press within the confines of the law.

    [not a word of the government]

    14:15 We are all members of the same family. We must remain friends and allies. Why have we gone so far as to pain some of our marajeh [top religious leaders]?

    14:16 I hope this sermon will pave a way out of this current situation. A situation that can be considered a crisis.

    14:17 The sermon is finished.

    14:18 Two chants can be heard: the blood in our veins is a gift to our leader and Hashemi, Hashemi, may god keep you safe.

    Excerpted from HERE.




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