July 17, 2009
Iran Update: If You Can’t Beat ‘Em, Join ‘Em
There were many significant images from Iran yesterday tied to Rafsanjani’s much anticipated, and surprisingly pro-reform Friday sermon. Those images included photos of Mousawi being seen attending the event, as well as the photo alleging to show presidential candidate Karroubi being roughed up and having his turban knocked off.
I was drawn to the one above, however, published in a post of images at gooya.com. In several stories leading up to yesterday’s event, I came across accounts in which young people — planning to be in the streets on way or the other, but not having taken part in religious ritual for years — were actually brushing up on their prayers.
The fact the prayer rug in the foreground is bright green could be completely coincidence, but the green scarf worn by the young man in the center of the photo is an unmistakable sign of the pro-Mousawi resistance.
Given the profound combination of political expression and primitive repression in Iran right now, it is fascinating to watch the reform movement patiently adapt its form and tactics by the week. At least at this point, it looks like the change is going to come from within.