Accessibility links

'Pseudo-Students' And Shenanigans


The scene at Tehran University on December 7

The scene at Tehran University on December 7

Official Iranian media were up to their usual tricks with Students Day upon them, as well as another anniversary of the 1999 student protests in Tehran that sparked a violent crackdown.

State media like Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) branded the hundreds of pro-democracy students marching at Tehran University in the center of the capital on December 7 a "militia group" and an "illegal branch of the Office to Foster Unity" (Daftare Tahkim Vahdat, Iran's largest reformist student organization). It accused participants and "pseudo-students" of exploiting the anniversary to "create mayhem."

IRNA also managed a creative spin to low-ball attendance and quash perceptions of public sympathy for the pro-democracy crowd:

The savage moves and insulting slogans of this small group were so bizarre that the lecturers, students, and passersby stopped to watch their violent behavior.

As you might expect, IRNA felt more kindly disposed toward the "university students and seminaries" protesting Islamic and international silence over events in Gaza.

How many participants at those rallies? "Large numbers." Go figure.

-- Andy Heil

About This Blog

Written by RFE/RL editors and correspondents, Transmission serves up news, comment, and the odd silly dictator story. While our primary concern is with foreign policy, Transmission is also a place for the ideas -- some serious, some irreverent -- that bubble up from our bureaus. The name recognizes RFE/RL's role as a surrogate broadcaster to places without free media. You can write us at transmission+rferl.org

XS
SM
MD
LG