Iran election roundup #2
Police batter Protesters: Iran or Georgia?
U.S. State Department speaks to Twitter over Iran
VASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. State Department said on Tuesday it had contacted the social networking service Twitter to urge it to delay a planned upgrade that would have cut daytime service to Iranians who are disputing their election.
Confirmation that the U.S. government had contacted Twitter came as the Obama administration sought to avoid suggestions it was meddling in Iran's internal affairs as the Islamic Republic battled to control deadly street protests over the election result.
For Comparison purposes only (i.e. To be completelly ignored by anyone that used Twitter to follow recent events in Iran):
Police in Georgia beat opposition protesters
Mon Jun 15, 2009 11:45am EDT
By David Mdzinarishvili
TBILISI (Reuters) – Masked police beat dozens of opposition protesters in the Georgian capital on Monday in the latest flare-up during a weeks-long street campaign against President Mikheil Saakashvili, witnesses said.
Dozens of black-clad police officers armed with truncheons confronted a protest of about 50 people at Tbilisi’s main police station demanding the release of six opposition activists detained since Friday, a Reuters photographer said.
He said several protesters and a photographer for the European Pressphoto Agency were severely beaten. Senior opposition official Zurab Abashidze was admitted to hospital.
Police seized cameras from photographers and cameramen, including a Reuters photographer. The cameras were later returned but the Reuters photographer’s images had been erased. Other photographers said their memory cards had been taken.
Tensions are running high in the former Soviet republic, after more than two months of opposition protests and roadblocks demanding Saakashvili quit over his record on democracy and last year’s disastrous war with Russia.
The volatile country of 4.5 million people sits on Russia’s southern border, at the heart of a transit region for oil and gas to the West.
“This is absolutely unacceptable,” protest leader and former Saakashvili ally Nino Burjanadze said of the violence. “We demand a response from our Western partners, to give their assessment of the situation.”
Saakashvili said he was tolerating a state of “lawlessness” and accused his opponents of trying to provoke him.
“They think Saakashvili is hot-headed, they insult (parliament speaker David) Bakradze and (Prime Minister Nika) Gilauri, and they try to make us crush them, “ he told a televised meeting of the parliamentary majority.
Police firing tear gas and rubber bullets dispersed the last mass demonstrations against Saakashvili in 2007. Watched closely by the West, authorities are wary of taking a hard line again, but analysts question how long the stalemate can continue.
“CRIMINALS AND BANDITS”
Both sides have traded blame for a spate of violent incidents, vying for the sympathy of Georgia’s Western allies.
The opposition said that statements by several Western embassies on Friday, in which they criticized opposition protesters for throwing rocks and bottles at Bakradze’s official car, had encouraged the government to take a hard line.
“The statements made by the U.S., French and Czech ambassadors clearly gave impetus to the authorities to act as criminals and bandits today,” opposition leader David Gamkrelidze said.
The Interior Ministry said in a statement that protesters were hampering traffic and resisted police efforts “to unblock the entrance to the police station and restore traffic movement.” It said 39 protesters were detained.
US envoy praises Georgia’s handling of opposition protests
Jun 10, 2009
TBILISI (AFP) — A senior US envoy on Wednesday praised the government of the former Soviet republic Georgia for how it has handled weeks of opposition protests calling on President Mikheil Saakashvili to resign.
“We appreciated the way the government is dealing with the protests,” Philip Gordon, the US assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs, told a press conference in the Georgian capital Tbilisi.
What the Georgians lack is of course an Army of Twits to get all hot and bothered on their behalf. That's the problem with Twits though. Never there when they actually could be useful.
US Defense Department sees protests as terrorism
Antiterrorism training materials used by the Department of Defense teach that public protests should be regarded as “low-level terrorism,” according to a letter of complaint sent to the department by the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California.
I think that the democratic process, free speech, the ability of people to peacefully dissent — all those are universal values and need to be respected. — US President Barrack Obama commenting on the recent unrest in Iran
Twits out fer the lads . . .
Iran election roundup
Perusing UrbanDictionary.com I found this:
Twitterolution: A revolution instigated, orchestrated and subsequently propagated and promoted by the WEB 2.0 Sensation Twitter.
Example: The protests seen in Iran against the disputed election is the World's first Twitterloution.
SO I sent this alternative definition to the people at UrbanDictionary.com:
Definition: What occurs when a bunch of gullible twits are let loose on the internet to whip themselves into a frenzy regarding an election fraud that probably never occurred
Example: Boy, that was some load of twitterolution in Iran recently, weren't it?
They sent me a very rapid reply:
Editors reviewed your entry and have decided to not publish it.
A good blog on this subject:
Contrasting protest coverage Iran vs G-20 and Georgia
Iran, Iran, Iran. You would think this was the only news in the world. Odd isn't it?
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