Iran: Neda (warning: graphic video)


Via Andrew Sullivan, who is doing some of the best coverage of the Iran story online:

"At 19:05 June 20th Place: Karekar Ave., at the corner crossing Khosravi St. and Salehi st. A young woman who was standing aside with her father watching the protests was shot by a basij member hiding on the rooftop of a civilian house. He had clear shot at the girl and could not miss her. However, he aimed straight her heart.

I am a doctor, so I rushed to try to save her. But the impact of the gunshot was so fierce that the bullet had blasted inside the victim's chest, and she died in less than 2 minutes. The protests were going on about 1 kilometers away in the main street and some of the protesting crowd were running from tear gass used among them, towards Salehi St.

The film is shot by my friend who was standing beside me. Please let the world know."

Confirming The Basij Murder Of Neda (Daily Dish)

There is another video of the same scene, taken from a different angle, here.

Boing Boing reader S.R. Hadden explains in the discussion thread below that an unidentified man kneeling next to her crying out, in Farsi: "My Neda, don't be afraid, please don't go, please don't go, please stay..."
Related: 'Neda' becomes rallying cry for Iranian protests


  1. If you mean from an international politics standpoint, I have to disagree. I would tend to think its necesary to stay out of it.

  2. Right, Takuan.

    But sometimes to avoid that crap, you have to fight. I was reading Orwell this morning, he said that pacifists were people who were happy to let other use violence in their names. Seeing this, I wonder if he is right. (He had a very good critical article of Gandhi, even if he agreed with much of his actions). And, if we go down that road, how can we be sure we won’t end up being like them?

    I hate this. It is a damn catch 22.

  3. Despite the warning, this video is still inappropriate and should instead be a hyperlink. There is graphic and then there is graphic.

    That said, Go Freedom!

  4. such are the perils of juvenile delinquency. had she been brought up in a nice home under the guiding hand of islam instead of western pop music and television this might have been avoided.

  5. Talia: One can stay out of it but not remain neutral.

    Neutral means that one cares not which side wins. If you don’t care whether the Mullahs win or freedom wins, then there is nothing else I can say.

  6. Jason Rizos, I’m staring at the still shot right now and there’s nothing inappropriate or graphic about the just plain still shot.

    There are PLENTY of warnings about the graphic content of the video. Its TOTALLY the viewers choice whether to subject themselves to it or not.

    The video is also big news internationally right now and “Neda” is being used as a rallying cry on twitter and elsewhere. So the video is significant.

    Totally, 100% appropriate.

  7. Needless to say Hawley, your comments illustrate the differences which simply defy logic outside of your region.

    You are insinuating that this girl losing her life in the street in front of her father is just.

    You are wrong. I am not going to be ‘culturally sensitive’ here…you are wrong. What you are thinking is wrong. No person, young, old, male, or female deserves to die in the street over ‘pop music and television’.

    Shame on you.

  8. And Obama still remains silent, giving lame excuses about “scapegoating”. Even Reagan could have done better in standing up to a Tyranny.

  9. Atanguay, I’m pretty sure Hawley was being sarcastic, although its hard to judge since he has no comment history. :)

  10. Thanks Xeni. The best we can do to help, is to expose the crimes that are being committed as much as possible.

  11. Hey Atanguy,

    Pretty sure Hawley was being sarcastic… do people really not get sarcasm? Really?

  12. Hawley go stick your head in a pig. If you where Trying to be sarcastic you might want to rethink sarcasm in such a serious post.

    I also have to ask Avi Solomon, what they think Obama should do. Unless you haven’t noticed America is in the crapper right now; i.e. economy, two wars, Faux News stirring up the fringe right. (not to mention the logistical problems that would arise should we say invade…)

  13. @Avi Solomon, staying silent right now is the best option for Obama. With Ahmadinejad and Khamenei wanting to blame the protests on the US and UK, Obama coming out with a statement in support of the protests only adds fuel to their fire.

    This wouldn’t be the first time that a President has to stay publicly neutral on an issue that they have a private opinion on.

  14. Sorry Talia, I didn’t pick up on that.

    I guess someone needs to develop some sarcasm HTML tags or something. or something.

  15. Demidan: Do not forget North Korea luring. These times are perfect for messing things even more than they already messed.

    And to clarify my previous comment: I was not talking about an invasion of a foreign country, rather than about Iranian people using violent methods to fight back, instead of an Ahimsa approach.

  16. I’d bet anything that Hawley beleives the exact opposite of what he wrote. Then I’d risk all my earnings that he expressed the very thoughts of quite a few of the traditionalists actually in power in Iran… and Rush Limbaugh and Co if she and these events were American since those. Those freaks are the same all over the planet.

    Also thank you Doctor Jesus for keeping our Xeni safe and healthy. We need her to show us what must be seen. She did it with plenty of forewarning for the BB ostriches here. Please don’t ask for a unicorn yet: it may take some time still before an ayatollah justly hangs for what he’s done…

  17. If you mean from an international politics standpoint, I have to disagree. I would tend to think its necesary to stay out of it.

    If Takuan does mean from an international politics standpoint, he went through a slight shift in positions, right Takuan? ;) But probably not…

    Look Talia, from an ideological point of view I would more or less agree with you. But the stakes are too high to just look at it from an ideological point of view.

  18. And, let’s remember that NK actually built its nuclear weapons under a Republican presidency. And Bush did nothing, so it is the pot calling back the kettle talking about Obama’s pasiveness in important issues.

  19. I don’t see what else Obama could do, considering our history of “helping” with Iranian elections in the past. The US is one of the people Iranians have to “thank” for both the Shah and the current “Supreme Leader”.

    Obama’s condemned the violence, but he’s staying as far away from even the perception of helping one side or the other.

    As individuals, I don’t think we can, or should, be neutral anymore. Our government, IMNSHO, has an obligation to avoid taking sides unless someone specifically invites us to do so.

  20. Demidan, it is not your place to judge how someone reacts to serious or sad situations. Humour is an effective coping mechanism for many people. Also, I think that humour is a very important part of any serious tragedy, and without it I feel we suffer more.

    Plainly put I think you should ease up on Hawley. For all you know he could be very seriously troubled by the post.

  21. @Karen M,

    When you say one side or the other, do you mean Mousavi and Ahmadinejad? if so, do you seriously believe that the protests are only about whether or not Mousavi won the election? Consider this, even if Ahamadinejad falls and Mousavi replaces him, the young Iranians cry for freedom will stay unanswered.

  22. What should Obama do? At the very least, he could provide unambiguous moral support for the students.

    The USA (& the ‘Zionists’) will always be blamed for everything no matter what by the Mullah regime. A strident act of moral rhetoric addressed directly to the Iranian students by Obama will alleviate the pain and succour the morale of these young people who are willing to pay the ultimate price.

    And he has a precedent- Reagan’s support of Poland’s Solidarity movement(during a severe US recession). Just copy & paste Mr. Obama!:

  23. At times like this, in order to see clearly, I try to imagine the point of view of the other side – in this case, the gunman.

    Am I a crazed, brain-washed lunatic, blind to the revolting inhumanity of shooting a fellow Iranian just because she disagrees with my politics?

    My natural instinct is to think that’s absurdly simplistic. But what can it be like to be inside the mind of the person pulling the trigger? Acting under orders? Acting in good faith? Thinking that what I do is the only way to stop my country from being overrun by some as yet nameless evil? What is going on?

    In fact this is beyond my understanding. If I am honest, my reaction is to kill the gunman, and kill him in front of his family. But in doing so, I stoop to his level. This is not what I wanted life on planet earth to be like. Somebody, somewhere, has made a terrible mistake.

  24. Does this young woman’s death suck?


    Should we do something about it?


    Can we do something about it?


    This is 100% the Iranian’s fight. If the Iranian’s want a dramatic change from their current circumstances, then they need to stand up and fight for it. We have no business sticking our big noses into the situation.

    Call me selfish but I have a bit more concern for our two journalists in a North Korean labor camp. Unfortunately those two lives will be forfeit in the name of political expediency when it comes to our policy with North Korea if it keeps the North Koreans from doing anything stupid, and if they do something stupid and we retaliate, well two more American lives lost.

    What happens in Iran is none of our business, none of the United States business. We can watch from the sidelines and cheer whoever we want to cheer, but what get’s us into trouble is when we do interfere.

    How is this girl’s death going to effect us and our daily lives? Will any of you remember her death a week from now when the next trendy story comes along to shove this under the carpet? Because you can see the pictures posted and the videos posted almost instantaneously does it make it more serious and important than what’s happening in Mexico, in Somalia, or on Main Street U.S.A.?

    No. It’s called the human condition, and this is what we deal with each day of our lives.

    If you are in the United States, we have a few more issues to concern ourselves with than Iran’s problems. I wish them well. As an individual this has zero effect on my life except for the time it took me to watch the video yesterday, and then comment on this today.

    My last thought goes to the father of the young woman. That is the tragedy, to see your daughter die before your eyes, senselessly. It shows you the randomness of life, the pointlessness of it all.

    have a drink with friends, read that book you’ve been meaning to get to. 5 minutes from now you could be taking a dirt nap.

    1. Can we do something about it? No.

      Incorrect. Roxana Saberi was arrested and charged with a bunch of different crimes until they finally settled on one. She was sentenced to eight years, reduced to two, released. If it weren’t for international pressure, she’d be in jail.

      International pressure works. Several outrageous judicial crimes against human rights in Saudi Arabia were quietly reversed by King Abdullah due to international outcry. There is a continuum between going to war and doing nothing. It’s completely appropriate for people around the world to put Iran under the microscope and express outrage at what’s happening there.

  25. @30

    You say:

    In fact this is beyond my understanding.

    But then immediately go on to say:

    If I am honest, my reaction is to kill the gunman, and kill him in front of his family.

    No, I think you’ve got the understanding down. The gunman was just willing to act.

  26. This is the single most upsetting piece of video I’ve ever seen.
    Even though it is horrific – and something I will never watch again – I think everyone should see it at least once, and be forced into taking a side and taking action. Even though I can never bring myself to view it again, I know I will never forget it. (I’m being banal, but I’m compelled to say it.)

    Neutrality is heinous at this stage, and there is a lot of politicking happening – at the expense of lives I might add. We can only hope that her death hasn’t been in vain and that the people of Iran can overthrow the ruthless b*****ds that have let this happen.

    It is astounding that it came to this; a young girl being shot in the heart with her father there to watch her gasp for air as the blood in her veins stops flowing.

  27. This being Father’s Day, parenting is on my mind, so forgive the analogy, but…

    Not interfering in the struggle of the people of Iran to reform/restore/reclaim their country may seem heartless or uncaring, but in actuality it is much like what one must do at times with one’s children: allow them to solve their own problems, because that is the only way they will truly be solved.

    I don’t mean to say that Iran or Iranians are like children. I mean that they are like someone we care for. The same thing can apply to dealing with adults, friends, siblings even parents. It’s just that the way that we most often encounter this is with our children.

    In fact, the notion that the great heroic US or the West must rescue these folks is actually treating them as children, it becomes the tyranny of paternalism.

    And so our hearts go out to them. We weep for their dead and we share their yearning for self-determination, their struggle to take control of their our country and future. And yet, like adults, we formally, in the guise of our President, must be strong enough to not interfere, to express our devotion to justice, and our respect for them.

    Obama has it right. Read Pat Buchanan or Andrew Sullivan or Glenn Greenwald, or Musavi, whichever one of them you respect. They each explain this well.

  28. Re: Sarcasm in these discussions

    I think sarcasm is a place people go to when the truth is too awful to say out loud. It’s not very useful for the dialog and can be mistaken for trolling, but it’s a little more coherent than simply going off into a corner and crying.


    As you ask: you are selfish. And boorish, to boot.

    In the United States, we are certainly impotent when it comes to “doing” something for the Iranians. But, as many of them have said, they simply want their stories heard; one half of that is being one who hears. As someone who is interested in freedom, at a blog where the word is thrown around a lot, I think educating yourself about this movement and its tragedies is important.

    It’s an absurd argument. Why do we listen to the news? We can’t do anything about it. Why vote in a presidential election? You’re not going to make any difference with a single vote.

    The lame old idiom is right. Knowing is half the battle. And you can’t fight the other half without it.

  30. In case anyone is wondering, the father in the view is crying out, in Farsi: “My Neda, don’t be afraid, please don’t go, please don’t go, please stay…”

  31. I’m going to just repost something I retweeted:

    “RT@Jikiri It took just one bullet to kill Neda. It will take just one Neda to bring an end to Iranian tyranny. #IranElection #Neda #gr88”

  32. I wonder how many people being shot by basij I’d have to see before I started shooting back.

  33. Brons, I kinda agree with you. This is a complex situation and inteference can only make it worse.

    Me, I’ve been kinda sympathetic to the hard-liners even though they seem to be pretty crummy leaders.

    The US has consistently intefered in Iranian politics over the decades, and this they have admitted proudly (at least in the case of overthrowing Mohammed Mosadegh). And boy have my feelings changed now that I know that some of the “diplomats” just prior to the Iranian hostage crsis were CIA (ie, the same organization that overthrew Mosadegh). Let’s not forget UN silence at Iraq’s invasion of Iran (and the loss of 2-3 million lives).

    The tough thing here is that there are undoubtably plenty of “hard-liners” that use the (justified) paranoia to maintain a status quo that doesn’t really work that well, while oppresses people. Meanwhile, however, the US really has persecuted Iran and in effect empowered reactionary elements (some of whom probably truly believe that they are protecting Iran from foreign influence).

    ANY inteference from the US at least could only be construed as, well, interference.

  34. This is so heartbreaking.

    But remember this country has actively spurred rebellions and rioting and coup d’etats.

    It never solves anything for the people, only for corporations.

    A violent confrontation with Iranian authorities has to be between the Iranian people and the Iranian government. If we come in and bolster the rebellion, it will in effect undermine it and make it look like western power stepped in and did the work.

    The Iranians have to win on their own. And if they keep up the resistance, they may prevail.

  35. Antinous: there’s quite a difference between a single AMERICAN journalist and an entire foreign nation in upheaval.

    1. there’s quite a difference between a single AMERICAN journalist and an entire foreign nation in upheaval.

      True. But international attention does have a big effect. The effect isn’t just on the government in question. I would say that, for example, international criticisms of US actions in the last decade were a significant motivator in getting Americans out to vote in the last election. Nobody had to invade us, but the knowledge that much of the world views us with scorn and ridicule does get some people off the couch and into the voting booth. Likewise, knowing that the world is concerned about human rights in Iran might counterbalance some of the despair that many Iranians feel living in a totalitarian regime. As an individual or as a citizen, I’d be comforted, enheartened and motivated by the knowledge that people around the world cared about what I was going through.

      Think about it on a personal level. If you were divorcing an abusive husband, you might not want your friends and coworkers to come to your house and shoot him, but do you really want them to pretend that you don’t have a fresh black eye every week? We shouldn’t confuse absence of compassion with non-intervention or support with interference.

  36. My “yeah, but what can I do” was followed by a facebook message:

    “Pass this on: If anyone is on twitter, set your location to Tehran and your time zone to GMT +3.30. Security forces are hunting for bloggers using location/timezone searches. The more people at this location, the more of a logjam it creates for forces trying to shut Iranians’ access to the internet down. Cut & paste & pass it on.”

    I’m unfamiliar (okay, avoiding) twitter so:
    Any houghts on if this seems like a plausible/helpful thing to do?

  37. #28/Failix: When you say one side or the other, do you mean Mousavi and Ahmadinejad? if so, do you seriously believe that the protests are only about whether or not Mousavi won the election?
    Read what I said again. It’s not a question of Mousavi and Ahmadinejad. It’s about the anti-government protesters and the government, run by the current Supreme Leader/Ayatollah. The US cannot afford to be seen as the Great Satan yet again. If we interfere in Iran’s political affairs any more than we already have, it will make things exponentially worse. We can support, we can offer encouragement from the outside, but let’s not make a bigger mess than is already there.

    Several people between your comment and here have said it far better than me, so I’m leaving it at that.

  38. Thanks Antinous, you seem to be one of the rare people who dare to suggest (in this thread and others about Iran) that we can do something.

    I think it’s a selfish, hypocrite, and coward thing, to say that what happens elsewhere isn’t our (that is people who don’t live in Iran) business.

    @Karen M,

    It’d be nice if people commenting on the neutrality issue, would stop assuming that everybody who isn’t radically opposed to any kind of intervention is American.

  39. Karen:

    Agree with you wholeheartedly.

    China also went through a sort of paranoia era, inspired and empowered in part by the US.

    Iran, like China, is one of the oldest cultures in the world. It’s very easy to judge it in our own terms and then be tempted to try to force it to make the “right” choice.

    But in the end any attempt to force Iran to make the “right” choice will be viewed (and rightly, too) as an imposition of western will and might.

  40. It may not be much, but we are doing something. This video and many like it are hosted on youtube and a variety of video services. The mullahs cannot control this western beast, the net. They will not be able to control the past, there is hope they will not control the future.

  41. Unicorn chaser from a punk-burqa-dressing artist:

    I thought it might help a bit here, plus her website is a very odd reflection on advertisment and art.

    I know, totally off topic, but I think it is interesting the way that the Muslim people assimilates “our” culture (look at the clothing in the video) and the way “we” assimilate bit of theirs (other than eating falafel). Plus, we need an Unicorn.

    Still, Neda’s legacy will live, I hope.

  42. And Obama still remains silent, giving lame excuses about “scapegoating”. Even Reagan could have done better in standing up to a Tyranny.

    I’m getting tired of people who think the events in Iran are some kind of uprising for freedom — they aren’t. The opposition leader was deeply involved in the hostage taking in 1979, supported the fatwa against Solomon Rushdi and has demonstrated a deep hatred for the United States that is just as bad as that expressed by the mullahs. In other words, a vote for EITHER CANDIDATE in the Iranian elections is a vote for tyranny, just a slightly different flavor.

    The rioting is about getting a fair election. That’s it. Bloodshed is always a tragedy, but no matter who would have won, Neda would still suffer the same oppression all Iranian women do.

    1. I’m getting tired of people who think the events in Iran are some kind of uprising for freedom — they aren’t….The rioting is about getting a fair election.

      How is an uprising about getting a fair election not an uprising for freedom?

  43. Hi I live in Utah. I have grown up with friends in the Iranian community. I know their stories, the Shah,Khomeini, and current how much they have tolerated their system that is antique, and not forward thinking. Moreover the American Iranians have been blessed with new hope from seeing how our youth can change old ways if brought together peacefully and democratically. My whole being is crying for this government to honor these protesters their basic human rights. Then again this is why peaceful liberators desperate for a fair democracy are finally turned into submission, or a fully organized battle for freedom. God Bless each and everyone of you! Dont give up! Neda did not die in vain, she represents all of you, and what you are fighting for. Be very proud of your daughter she is very brave.

  44. this video is so compelling in how Neda looks into all of our eyes before she dies, imploring us to act.

  45. And he has a precedent- Reagan’s support of Poland’s Solidarity movement(during a severe US recession). Just copy & paste Mr. Obama!:

    There is a pretty big difference between Reagan openly calling for the USSR to screw off and Obama doing the same thing in Iran. The US always had the moral authority and the support of the people of nations imprisoned by the USSR. Heroic efforts like the Berlin air drop had shown from day one that the US was committed to freeing these people no matter what. This is what made Regan pounding on the Berlin wall effective.

    The same is not true for Iran.

    Iran and the US have a very rocky relation and the truth is the US has zero moral authority over there. You don’t need to go back more than 20 years to find the US doing very nasty things to Iran that were most certainly not in the cause of supporting democracy. In particular, you have the US supporting a brutal dictator that the people of Iran eventually over threw off and, more recently, the US backing Iraq in a horrible and brutal war with Iran.

    The US is vilified in Iran and rightly so. Obama is doing the right thing. Voicing support and keeping a low profile is the best thing to do right now. A loud and boisterous Obama is just the moral high ground the regime will happily snatch up to try and legitimize their brutality.

  46. ive seen all the sickest shit the internet has to offer, all the gore, everything.
    the video crushes my soul.

  47. It’s not about doing something. That’s such a Western way of approaching the world: How do we fix them? How do we make things better?

    It’s about feeling something. It’s about watching an innocent girl die after being shot through the heart, and feeling her father’s pain as he shouts, “Do not be afraid!”. How can it be anything else?

    They want to vote, they want to disagree and not be beaten for doing so. It’s so basic! I can’t reconcile that this is happening, and that it’s happening in places where twitter and facebook haven’t reached. It’s not right, it’s not ok, and nobody asks for this.

    At the risk of sounding even more melodramatic – Maybe tonight all we do is stand on our balconies and shout “Allaho Akbar” with them.

    1. “Capital punishment in Iran is applied. Crimes that are punishable by execution include: sodomy, murder, apostasy amongst others. Iran has garnered much media attention and criticism due to a number of executions carried out on minors, despite having signed the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which forbids executing child offenders for crimes committed under the age of 18….Iran, despite signing the Convention on the Rights of the Child, is the world’s biggest executioner of child offenders, for which it has received international condemnation; the country’s record is the focus of the Stop Child Executions Campaign. Iran accounts for two-thirds of the global total of such executions, and currently has roughly 120 people on death row for crimes committed as juveniles (up from 71 in 2007).”

      Wikipedia article

  48. freedom does not come without pain, the loss of this child is just the beginning, I believe that freedom and democracy will come, but at what cost, here lies a girl that will never grow old to be a mother, or what it means to be cool, but instead will be remembered as the girl that wanted freedom, so I say to you, let freedom ring, may god look down upon her spirt as that of a fallen angel that came to earth to stand for freedom…….

  49. Disturbing. I felt like I could see the light of that young lady’s life draining out of her eyes.

  50. I didn’t read the comments in this thread, so this might have been said — can I respectfully request a filter for Boingboing that excludes stories like this. Like ?happyonly

    I was emotionally scarred after reading the Russian serial killers story and comments a while back (i never even watched the video). I literally had nightmares for a week or more, and I still think about it about once a week.

    I know sections of the world are horrible. My brain just can’t always handle it.

  51. @#70
    the warnings were there, I understand your distress but “happy only” filters would mean that one day evil would come to your door. Unannounced.

  52. The US as a nation-state might have it’s hands tied politically, but all citizens across the globe are individuals first. The actions of many people from different backgrounds acting together in a unified movement can, have, and do change a lot!

    Discussing this, speaking about it- it gets the word out and raises awareness. It’s still something and so much better than complacency. The worst way to treat any situation is to ignore it. This includes silently condoning it or writing it off as not your problem.

    @dhalgren, next week I will still be outraged and acting out against these and other violations of basic human rights. And the week after that and so on. Lumping myself and others together into a privileged and mindless bourgeoisie consumerist class is an exercise in power I refuse to allow you to commit. Speak for only yourself next time, please.


  53. After having read the article and most of the comments, after having understood that this was a brutal political murder, after having felt anger and sorrow rise in me I think I’d do something disrespectful – that i’d objectify (is this the correct English term?) the girl and her death if I watched the clip. This doesn’t mean, that you shouldn’t have posted it (the way you did, with a warning.) May this girl rest in peace! May her father, her family and friends be strong.

  54. How horrible. Just devistating.

    How the Iranian people can keep this a non-violent movement I don’t know. Half a world away my heart breaks and my blood boils.

  55. Thanks Xeni.

    TGG161 — all of the graphic content is clearly marked here, but if you’re legitimately scarred by the still screenshot and the blurb above, you should be able to roll your own bb filter fairly easily.

    It will be fascinating to see the effect that this video of one person dying has on the web population, in comparison to the many vids of thousands and thousands of people protesting.

    BTW, there is another vid of the same scene here.

  56. I thank you for the graphic material. Not b/c I like gore, I don’t even like horror movies. But when atrocities like this are being committed by an illicit and brutal regime. Is the world supposed to run and hide? You can’t put a pretty face on horror and killing an innocent girl is horrific.

  57. Sadly to say as a Veteran of 8 years in the Military there was little they could have done for her .. she was dead by the time the laid her down. It is of little consequence that she was still dealing with what just happened to even think of the fact she was dying. Most people who do have had wounds like that and have lived have told me they only think that they were going to die when the medics reached them and started to open the wound dressings. if you have been in the military and have had a chance to smell them know what I mean .. and I do think they smell of death because of how many friends and members of the Armed service I had to ship home still clothed in the medical dressings. I pray she was thinking of something wonderful perhaps a picnic or her Father not the fact she was ever going to die.

  58. No matter what happens, I hope every crippled and withered little Basij piece of shit gets to taste his own blood before he’s sent to Hell. How dare a creature like that be given the government blessing to take lives at a whim. That sniper should be ground-up and cooked into lamp oil. At least that way, he would contribute something useful to the world.

  59. Agree with Karen M., Neon Tooth, etc. Obama et al is doing it exactly right. There’s help, and then there’s “help”. The US has been “helping” all over the world for years.

    Honestly, the mere existence of the net, Twitter, Facebook, cellphones with cameras and all that has done more than one person, one government, or any “intervention” could ever do.

  60. Someone oughta go Ewok on those Basij. I keep thinking of a long wire about neck height as they come down the street in those motorcycles.

  61. The US is vilified in Iran and rightly so. Obama is doing the right thing. Voicing support and keeping a low profile is the best thing to do right now. A loud and boisterous Obama is just the moral high ground the regime will happily snatch up to try and legitimize their brutality.

    Exactly, and why we’re at it can we try to clean up our own backyard?

    As for just my city here, nearly 40 public school students killed from gun violence this school year alone, over 500 shot (but not killed) altogether in the last 16 months. They’re generally poor though, not sexy causes.

  62. I can’t help comparing & contrasting with Burma’s revolts and bloody crackdowns. I sincerely hope that whatever happens in Iran, it is for the best for all of its people. At the end of the day, we’re one human family, and what happens to them matters to me.

  63. Remember, it’s a round world. To see this and then talk about international relations – it boggles the mind. Armed thugs are armed thugs regardless which imaginary borders they’re in. Fuck every border and every country.

  64. I keep hearing people say that we can’t do anything about this, that we as Americans are “impotent.” I completely disagree. By discussing it here, by passing messages via twitter, facebook, etc., we are contributing to a new way of passing on the knowledge of these atrocities. The news media has, by and large, proven itself inept at carrying the real impact of these acts of cowardice. Instead, they reduce these acts to mere numbers and then post them on tickers across the screen…convenience for those of us with “busy” lives. This video, linked to countless websites, has had a far larger impact on the mostly apathetic American public than anything Fox News, CNN, or MSNBC could spin and censor for us.

    The fact that, many Americans continue to display this sheltered, fatalistic attitude is quite disturbing. If you are too lazy and uncaring to stand up for a fellow human being in their time of extreme need, don’t come to these message boards flaunting your vague, often inappropriate excuses as to why we should just leave things alone. Yes, we are Americans. But, we are humans first. No matter your nationality, no matter your religion, no matter your political affiliation, you should care about this and you should do everything in your power, no matter how small your actions are, to help bring these atrocities to light and ultimately end the violence. Stop making excuses, start being human.

  65. Stop making excuses, start being human.

    So true. Passing along this information and raising awareness is a very simple act everyone can do (if they want to).

  66. @ Everyone concerned with the appropriate role of the American government in this situation:

    This isn’t about Ahmadinejad vs Mousavi, or even Ahmadinejad vs The People of Iran. The power play occurring here is about Khomeini’s ability to maintain his position as the Supreme Leader. There is a power-play occurring in the Guardian Council, and I would imagine that those interested in removing Khomeini are having to walk a fine line in an attempt to gather enough support from disparate segments of the country to unseat him. Bearing this in mind, intervention from the US could make those in the more progressive camp (Khomeini is very conservative) look like pro-Western US lapdogs. That will make it very difficult to gather the support necessary to enact real change.

    I think it’s pretty much impossible to witness what is going on here and not sympathize with the Iranian people. Theirs is a very visceral effort for democracy. A measured, tempered reaction from the US is not from lack of integrity or courage, but is rather a show of support for the Iranian people. Does anyone honestly think that the present saying, “Leaders of Iran, what you are doing is wrong. We demand that you stop now,” will actually get them to stop? I hope not. That would only work if we were willing to back it up with military action. And we saw how well that worked in Iraq. Sometimes you have to patiently wait for things to build up to a breaking point and then make your move. I’m hoping that is what the US government is doing here.

  67. When I was in high school (1987) I witnessed the death of a young man from a gunshot wound. At first everyone thought they were gang members, but really the fight was for the affections of a young girl; a similar motive to hundreds of duels throughout time. The young man died alone in a pool of blood, his assailant chased off by school officials, his breath slowing until all was silent. A few minutes later the paramedics arrived and tried to revive the boy, electric paddles on the chest, but there was no hope of success. Next year the school got metal detectors, locked doors, and a metal fence sealing it off from the outside world. No revolution, just fear used as control.

    The imagery of Neda’s violent death brought me back to that moment just a bit longer than 22 years ago. Despite issues of time, space, culture that can never be bridged, the young man and Neda are tied together as two children both made from stardust; their very existences bleeding out until the last spark of humanity is gone. It is useless to cry. But it is not useless to hope. Hope for revolution.

  68. @92/IndigoSkye- absolutely. This is humanity, in that video. At its core. Which is why it rips so many of us to see it. The reasons it happened aren’t tragedy. That it happened at all, is.

  69. evil should be confronted not ignored anywhere it exsists.The free people of the world should support the iranian protestors.

  70. @87 Compassion is a wonderful thing.

    The Iranian people have things stacked against them, Police, Basiji rednecks, a Revolutionary Guard that behave like Mafiosa, and with an uncaring and out of touch Theocracy at the helm.

  71. “I’m getting tired of people who think the events in Iran are some kind of uprising for freedom — they aren’t….The rioting is about getting a fair election.”

    @57 How is an uprising about getting a fair election not an uprising for freedom?

    It’s about freedom in the same way that a hunger strike by prison inmates is about freedom. They aren’t calling for a free and unfettered press. They aren’t calling for freedom of religion or even secular control of government. They aren’t advocating equality for women and the execution of homosexuals will continue even if Mousavi gains power.

    I am simply arguing that what we are seeing is a backlash against an unjust system, but this is most definitely not some sort of Islamic version of the American Revolution.

    No matter who emerges from this power struggle, Iran will remain under the theocratic boot heel and many, many more Nedas will die in dark, secret prisons, placed there happily by either Mousavi or Ahmadinejad.

    1. I am simply arguing that what we are seeing is a backlash against an unjust system, but this is most definitely not some sort of Islamic version of the American Revolution.

      I believe that the American Revolution was mostly about taxation without representation. If it were a version of the American Revolution, half the country would allow chattel slavery and women wouldn’t have any vote at all. You seem determined to disparage the Iranian struggle for freedom because their motivations aren’t perfect enough for you.

  72. Unfortunately, for some viewers ths would be considered inappropriate as it could cause Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome. This is a very unfortunate thing and I have not felt such remorse and anguish for some time, “worthy of a dove’s tears, the heavens plead for mercy.” I pray for her family and the current struggle taking place in Iran.
    Hugh Harrison

  73. the free people of the world support the Iranian people because we have can understand and act to what we are witnessing. but in an idealistic world democracy can only be brought to a country by its people, that is the only way the future leadership can be recognized bu its people. it is tough but the Iranian people should not give up, nor any other person who lives under such regimes. change will come, and the internet will be the source. the revolution can now be televised

  74. Having lost my own younger sister to murder just recently, I can’t even express how disturbed I am by this video. I hope that her family somehow survives this horror. I wish them strength, love, and a deep understanding of the good in the world. Peace be upon you, Nada.

  75. @ Avi Solomon (11 & 29)

    You think “we” should do something? Why not you? Feel like taking the point? Or are you an advocate only for someone else doing something – just so long as your own self is not on the line?

    This, sad and outrageous as it is, is an internal Iranian affair. Those who say any involvement by us will ultimately hinder or harm those we speak in favor of are correct.

  76. Unfortunately, Basij is part of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard which is made up of students and other lower level militia. The guard is also controlled by very heavily influenced special interest groups in Iran which differentiate Justice according to those interests. Although members of Basij have criticized their memberships behind closed doors, membership is essential to obtain scholarships and other perks which are controlled by those special interests. Also, determinations on vertical social mobility within that system depends upon open public loyalty. Basij and the Revolutionary Guard also have ties to Hezbollah.

  77. When I saw the headline “Neda becomes rallying cry for Iranian protests” I am embarrassed to say that I was reminded of Roger Waters song “Watching TV”

    She’s everybody’s sister

    She’s symbolic of our failure

    She’s the one in fifty million

    Who can help us to be free

    Because she died on T.V.


  78. @100. That’s a little disengenuos. This may turn into a push for freedom. Right now, the protestors are caught in the momentum of the thing that is happening. If it is a revolution they will need someone to lead. But this started as a protest over the fact that their candidate lost, fairly or not. And a candidate in what? People keep saying these people are fighting for democracy? But in what fashion? By appealing to the ayatollah for a redo. You know, the supreme leader of their theocracy. Elections, fair or not, alone do not make democracies. Good on them for standing up for their right to have their vote counted by the supreme leader. This may yet turn for democracy but right now it is not a revolution for freedoms sake.

    In terms of the violence, it’s absolutely horrible for anyone, a father or husband, to have to see such a thing.

    Removed from this very human reaction over such a personal act of violence and recognize that in every video I have seen police only wield batons. Out of the hundreds of thousands, maybe millions, reported to have spent a week protesting, last report has only 150 dead. Every death is tragic, but this does not make a grand repression. It makes a horrible misuse of power absolutely. But, I heard folks compare this to rwanda. Unless something changed today, that is way out of line.

    These kids don’t know what they want yet. Momentum is controlling them. But, when/if they figure it out prepare to see everyone steamrolled in their path and a country descend into complete and utter chaos.

    This is not a revolution for anything. Yet. But it sure could become one.

    1. Funnily enough, it takes time to create social change. The people of Iran (or anywhere) are not going to wake up one morning with the perfect plan for new governance and then put it right into place. It doesn’t work that way. If you’re waiting for the perfect political movement to support, you’ll eventually die without having ever supported anyone or anything.

  79. Could you imagine being a father and having to watch your daughter bleed out like that, unable to do anything? The look in her eyes is probably the most haunting thing I have seen for a long time. (And I have seen a lot.)

    I suspect a well trained sniper to be responsible for these deaths. There are just too many dead with Thoracic cavity (Upper Chest) wounds for it to be a coincidence at this point. Most of these wounds are death sentences, a surgeon would be saying last rights if this happened on a hospital doorstep. These shots are meant to kill not maim and repel protesters. They are kill shots.

    Here are 4 more deaths in the last two days.
    Warning these are graphic…
    1 Male – Upper Chest wound
    2 Young Males – Upper Chest wounds
    1 Young Male – Upper Chest / Throat wound

    What country randomly sharpshoots unarmed citizens for standing in a crowd, seriously? It has far past the point of return at this point. Not a religious person myself, but if there is indeed a higher being, I hope it is watching over these people.

  80. My heart goes out to the protesters in Iran, and all over the world.

    I want to help So Badly. Although, I fear if the US gets involved too directly that we may fuel fundamentalist propaganda against the United States and the Western World.

    I think it is too early for us to know the right course of action on behalf of the United States. However, we must continue to acknowledge the cruelty of Iran’s current regime and continue to voice our support for the Iranian people. Neda’s death can not be in vain. My prayers are with Iran.

  81. Quite different, isn’t it, to watch history happen, rather than read about it, predigested, in books? Don’t know what’s going to happen, not quite sure what’s the right thing to do, acutely aware of not having all the necessary information.

    Sort of like every other turning point in history.

  82. This is devastatingly, unbelievably sad. I find myself literally unable to comprehend this video and the situation it depicts.

  83. The only thing that is possibly worse than what happened to this young girl is that the world media is showing it over and over.

    N n dsrvs t hv thr dth wtchd gn lk fcs f dth vd. t’s nhmn. Frnkly, Xn, ‘m ttlly dsppntd n BngBng fr shwng ths.

    We’ve created a facebook group that is asking CNN and other media to please stop showing this video. Talk about what happened, but please remove it from BoingBoing and help us to get the other major media to stop showing it too.

    Here is the address of the group we have created to ask the media to show this woman the respect she deserves.

    Thank you,

    Vago Damitio

    1. Vago,

      Showing this video might help prevent other innocent people from being murdered. If you’re not willing to see what’s happening in Iran, turn off your computer, but please don’t tell Xeni what to post or characterize her intentions in such an offensive way.

  84. @109

    Yeah, it absolutely takes time. I mean, from the time of the american revolution, it took another 80 or 90 years to work out slavery. After that, it took another hundred years to work out jim crow laws. You know, until the 1910s, US senators were not popularly elected. And even now, we’re still working on human rights issues in our country. I get that. Absolutely.

    But, you argued that disagreeing with their motives because they are not appreciated doesn’t take away from the fact that it is a revolution. But, there is a big difference between a revolution and civil disobedience. I’m not discounting that they may yet actively turn down the path to the fight for a democracy. I think that examples of the kill shots by snipers (@108 and i absolutely agree they are) will help to catalyze that push.

    But, right now, they’re pissed because their guy, an old revolutionary that played a role in ensuring the creation of a theocracy, lost a public election to a post that is probably one of the best examples of pseudodemocracy as the opiate of the peoples. Fighting to support their right to the fauxleader they voted for may be revolutionary in that it goes against the will of the ayatollah, but it is not a push to democracy.

    But, right now, this is primarily angry people in the street clashing with baton wielding police men. Their motives do matter. You can’t stumble down the street into a revolution. That requires active pushing with deliberate intent to obtain a very specific goal. Saying you want a fair election is not the same thing as going out and taking any action necessary to make that happen. That would be a revolution. Civil disobedience is standing in the street in front of police officers talking about wanting a fair election. Peaceable appealing to the, again, supreme leader of their theocracy for the right to a fair election is not a revolution.

    And in time, it may yet become one. They’ve got a huge youth population, and that seems to be primarily who is involved in this. Even if this slows back down, the seed has been planted and a major chunk of the ayatollah’s power has been destroyed. You can’t be a supreme leader if what you say doesn’t happen. It’s a step towards a revolution, but not yet a revolution to democracy.

  85. eco here in a small colorado town in USA. I cry for Neda. she is beautiful in her last moments. nothing more to say. I cry. Stupid men and their politics.

  86. @VAGO:
    I understand your distaste over the showing of the Neda video repeatedly, but it is of social importance and already its power as a piece of anti-Ahmadinejad propaganda is evident.

    Without meaning to sound banal, one could compare it to gruesome and ghoulish footage of the holocaust that serves as a reminder of how low humans can stoop. Ahmadinejad would only be too happy to see the footage of Neda off the TV, in the same way he would like to see all ‘distasteful’ footage of the holocaust banned from public display. Freedom of the press sometimes means we have to put up with the ghoulish (and sometimes exploitative) images, however they can be for the greater good as in this instance.

    One of the good aspects of its repeated showing is that many more people will see it. I have seen it once and that’s more than I ever want to see it, however I want everyone else to see it for themselves. One cannot be squeamish with such significant things. The visceral nature of this video cannot be simulated with text or description; one needs to see such atrocity first-hand to fully grasp its horror. Such pieces of journalism work on a far more profound level than text, and affect the deepest of human emotions.

    It also gives purpose to her death (as sad as that is) for reasons everyone can see.


  87. Everybody in the world needs to see this. Even from my home in Seattle, as far away from Iran as you can get, I now know the name of Neda Soltani. I will never forget this crime. She will be remembered beyond this day. She will be remembered worldwide, by all peoples. In their brutality, the Basij have created a martyr that will become the rallying cry for their own undoing. This video is burned upon my brain. It may be the saddest thing I’ve ever seen.

  88. This video is reality. It is disturbing to watch .
    Maybe if we saw what happens to people in war, on our TVs every evening on the Corporate “News’, we would have less war.
    Our US tax dollars have killed many innocent people and we should see what we pay for.

    The “Supreme” Leader in Iran would love the US government to get involved on the side of the protesters.
    Anyone who supports the protesters doesn’t want the US government to become overtly involved.

  89. It would be disrespectful to this woman ,her family and humanity if the media had not shown this video or stopped showing it.
    Why do so many want to hide from reality and don’t want to be exposed to reality in all its forms?

  90. Dear America,
    think and say what you will but please, for the love of all that is good and pure, stay out of an actual armed conflict with Iran.

    The Rest Of Us

  91. Rather disappointed that Vago (113) was disemvowlled. From what I can see – and the only word I haven’t worked out was “fcs” – he made a well reasoned criticism, that I can understand (although I’m not sure yet whether I agree with it).

  92. This was very hard for me to swallow. I burst out in anger…how heartless can some people be? I had to cool off in my own way after seeing this.
    My heartfelt condolences to the woman’s family, friends and whomever knew her!

  93. That is the saddest video clip I have ever viewed. I tried not to look to hard, but her eyes….

  94. This is so far from a ‘wonderful thing’ that I can’t sleep tonight. I almost wish I could unsee this because it keeps playing in a loop in my head. I’ve finally created an account here despite reading for many months because I want to make sure my response is added.

    Yes, individual atrocities like this and far greater atrocities occur far too often. But it’s not often you see someone seconds after taking the bullet stagger, fall, bleed out, and die all in front of you.

    It reminds me of an event that occurred a week after I moved into a new apartment. I heard 3 ‘pops’ while watching a west coast ball game and went outside to look. A known drug dealer was lying in the gutter with three shots to the gut/chest. It was dark and the stream of blood that would eventually flow all the way down the hill had just started to trickle. His girlfriend was outside immediately, screaming. I knelt down to monitor his pulse while a neighbor ran for a blanket. It wasn’t long before his pulse started to flutter, and a few seconds later it stopped. The cops arrived a minute later with the ambulance right behind them, but he was long gone. There was so much blood by the time they took him away, a street cleaner was dispatched at 2am to clear the gutter before the morning light revealed it for all to see.

    I have first-hand experience of watching a person die; someone who was in excruciating pain before losing consciousness. But the lifestyle he chose included a very high probability of it all ending just as it did. Neda made no such choice. She may have selected slightly westernized attire and seemed no more than curious about the day’s protests, based on other video we’ve seen. To see her gunned down and die a brutal, agonizing death, right in front of her father no less, has shaken me to the core far more than what I witnessed in person.

    I can’t find a way to sum up how angry and disturbed this makes me. I have no frame of reference other than shock and horror and have no idea how to deal with it. It’s now well past dawn and sleep won’t be an option. So what CAN I do?!?

  95. #98 Watching this video will certainly not cause PTSD. It could be a trigger for someone who has PTSD, but if you have PTSD you have to deal with triggers all the time.

    The people who could get PTSD are not those who watch the video, but those who are there experiencing this hideous violence and helpless to stop it. That’s a cocktail for PTSD.

    This video is as violent as anything I have ever seen in my life.

    Those of you who complain that it should not have been posted? Shut up! You can read. Don’t expect the rest of the world to be buffered so you can cheerfully blunder about, refusing to use any judgment or unable to control you impulses, yet bent out of shape if anything that distresses you enters into your field of perception. Get the fuck over yourselves. Go watch the Disney channel or some dreadful safe pap. But don’t even dream of imposing it on the rest of the world.

    Life is hard and ugly and the refusal to face that fact helps keep it harder and uglier.

  96. “A single death is a tragedy; a million deaths is a statistic.” Never were truer words spoken.

  97. thanks for posting.

    sometimes it’s good for the rest of us to see how horrible murder really is.

    Numbers of ‘collateral damage’ say nothing. These images are something we as jaded, cynical people can understand emotionally.

  98. If nothing comes of this, Obama will take a real hit.

    But, personally, I like the idea of weighing in only if he intends to actually do something. Lofty words are what caused Kurds to revolt, and get gassed, even though the US never intended to get involved.

    He should come out and say, “I will have a strong critique of Iraq only when my country is prepared to be involved.” That way he’s still staying out of it and the hawks at home would be satisfied.

  99. I’m a fervent antifascist and radically opposed to religions and theocracies around the world.

    These two fundamental beliefs don’t allow me to advocate for the western worlds total neutrality towards the problem the youth of Iran faces today.

    To offer our individual help (activism, create awareness, set up proxies etc) is a great thing. And it does help, I’m sure! But in the end we all know that we are condemned to watch this movement die, because of the overwhelming power of Islam.

    I’m not suggesting that an invasion of Iran would be a solution of course. But I’m convinced that complete neutrality and passive help like this, is only very limited support for the Iranian protesters, and most importantly does nothing to fight fascism.

    I hate to say it but I feel caught in a serious dilemma. Does anybody have a way out?

  100. Hey there people who wish to do something to help but don’t know what to do…
    You might want to install TOR (The Onion Router) on your computer and setup relaying. This way you can help people abroad (e.g. Iran) share their views with the world and communicate with each other. (It uses a fair amount of bandwidth, but it’s worth it, right?)

    From the wiki page:
    “Tor aims to conceal its users’ identity and their network activity from traffic analysis. Operators of the system operate an overlay network of onion routers which provides anonymity in network location as well as anonymous hidden services”.

  101. Teufelsdroch: the gas used to kill Kurds was supplied by America to Saddam Hussein – who was installed with CIA help.

  102. any movement of foreign troops into Iran, or any bomb/missile attack from without, would mean Iran was at war. A state of war would mean that any Iranians presently protesting inside Iran would then be presented as traitors and any Iranian military currently sitting on the fence would almost certainly sweep the streets empty with automatic weapons fire and tanks. A popular reform movement would instantly become a civil war and the anti-reform forces would almost certainly immediately triumph. The core of the reform movement would be rounded up and dead with a week.
    This is not the time for outside force. If there ever IS a time in the course of a nation’s self-determination.

  103. I will never forget the panic in her eyes. I hope that whoever she was looking at when she died was someone she cared for.

    Thank you to whoever took this video and thank you BB for posting it.

  104. teufelsdroch said:

    He should come out and say, “I will have a strong critique of Iraq only when my country is prepared to be involved.” That way he’s still staying out of it and the hawks at home would be satisfied.

    Honestly, that would be seen by all as “kicking the can down the street” and would likely satisfy no one on either side of this discussion here in the US. It would also likely be seen as a sign of weakness by those involved in the struggle on the ground in Iran, by both those in Government and those opposing the Government.

    It would be a repeat of the now famous “If you need me, call me”, as the economy went into a tail-spin during the final month of the Presidential Campaign in 2008. He truest supporters bought the “multi-task” argument, his detractors felt he was distancing himself from the Senate (his then current job).

  105. The gift of life taken away so suddenly.

    A beautiful depictation for you all to understand how precious a life is. Innocence does not gauarantee immunity.

  106. If there ever IS a time in the course of a nation’s self-determination.

    What if the outcome of this self-determination is again a theocracy? How do you know that what the majority (officially) wants is freedom? And let’s not forget that a big part of the population is simply understandably too scared to protest (like the family of a friend of mine). All these people will be fucked, once again, along with the millions of protesters, if the theocratic republic doesn’t fall this time.

    But then again, for me this is a dilemma, because while I’m not really in favor of a war, I’m still unable to oppose it.

  107. This is an absolute tragedy.


    Something doesn’t add up here. She was watching the protests from 1 kilometer away? She must have had rather good eyes.

  108. Why the hell NOT show this video? Graphic videos like this make real what you could have ignored otherwise. A typed “Neda Soltani shot and killed during Iran protests,” will do nothing. Post a video and you get this. 4,270 English pages.

  109. America long ago destroyed any possibility of handing out some kind of moral pressure on Iran for Iran not governing “properly”.

    Operation Ajax. 1953. CIA and British intelligence overthrew the democratic government of Iran because they were going to nationalize their oil and stop the British from taking it for free. We installed a puppet government, the Shah, who ruled for 25 years, until 1979. Amnesty International released a report in the mid 70’s saying that the Shah had likely tortured a hundred thousand Iranians in secret prisons by his secret police. The backlash against the Shah sparked the Iraninan Revolution of 1979. America brought the Shah to the states to protect him. THe Iranians demanded his return. We refused. At which point, the iranians stormed the US embassy and took american hostages for over a year.

    They don’t hate us because of our freedom, they hate us because we took their freedom away in 1953 and put them under a brutal dictator until 1979. A dictator we supported monetarily and with military equipment. A dictator we protected after the Iranian revolution finally threw him out of power. All so we could get cheap oil.

    Can you imagine what it would be like if America came out and publicly supported Mousavi?

    It would be like Al Queda coming out and publicly endorsing an American presidential candidate, campaigning for a candidate, putting out television ads for a candidate.

    It would be disasterous.

    Anyone who wants to push Obama and their US politicians to put pressure on the Iranian government deal with this crisis is completely clueless about how most Iranians would take it, and are clueless about America’s dark history with Iran.

    We might be able to get other nations to put indirect pressure on Iran, but even the slightest whiff of an American scent would destroy any possibility of doing any good.

    If you want to put moral pressure on someone to do the right thing, you have to have some moral ground to push from. When it comes to Iran, America has no such ground.

  110. I do appreciate the importance of seeing this video, but I also think that words are sufficient to enflame a revolution and as Americans, we have a moral obligation to respect life and the act of dying.

    I feel that this is related to the obsessive way the jumpers were shown on 911 and also to the ghoulish way the media gives us every detail on the lives of serial killers. There is a certain element of voyeurism to showing this video that disturbs me as it diminishes the death of this human being.

    I’m okay with being disagreed with, I see your points, but I think that respect for death and dying is lost in the process of this video being played over and over. Neda was a living breathing loving human being with hopes and dreams, not a video.

    Imagine if she were your sister, mother, aunt, or friend and this were being played again and again…

    I do hope that I am not disemvoweled again. By the way, Xeni…you should post …. nah, I really don’t want to tell you what to post or what not to, I just thought it important that someone bring these ideas into the discussion since no one else was doing so….

  111. @Greg London

    Again, it’s not necessarily about America. I think nobody here needs a history lesson. And it wouldn’t be “support” to endorse Mousavi who wouldn’t get rid of the theocracy. But most importantly, Iranians don’t necessarily hate “us” (the western world). It’s to buy into the rants of the fundamentalists who govern the country to say and believe such a thing. Iran’s youth has outgrown the cold war set of mind.


    “I feel that this is related to the obsessive way the jumpers were shown on 911 and also to the ghoulish way the media gives us every detail on the lives of serial killers.”

    This has nothing to do with the mass media.

    “I think that respect for death and dying is lost in the process of this video being played over and over.”

    Do you also believe in ghosts?

  112. “Dear America,
    think and say what you will but please, for the love of all that is good and pure, stay out of an actual armed conflict with Iran.

    The Rest Of Us”

    Dear Rest of Us,
    At least we feel that WE ought to do something.


  113. Vago, Neda Soltani stepped up and became more than a sister, mother, aunt, or friend, it would be irresponsible and heartless for our media to do anything but show this video. The video can do nothing but further her cause and hopefully give a few politicians a nightmare or two.

  114. instead of bickering over a course already understood to be untenable, why aren’t you both suggesting non-military intervention ideas?

    Giving up open neutrality does not automatically mean the next move is an invasion. Email your local politicians and make it clear you demand they be seen to making a public statement condemning this murder and oppression. Start there.

  115. I don’t know what to think about the situation in Iran.

    I don’t know who won. I don’t know if the election was rigged or not. I don’t know how you could hold an election in a country with this government and ever feel certain of the outcome. I don’t know if the protesters can win. I don’t know if they represent the will of the people, so I don’t even know if they _should_ win. I don’t know I don’t know what a win would constitute, anyway. I don’t know what democracy even means to an Iranian.

    My own ignorance (and your ignorance, unless you’re actually in the streets of Iran today) makes the video even worse. What the hell am I supposed to take away from the soul crushing experience of watching this? Who am I supposed to be angry with and what am I supposed to do with the anger?

    About the only thing I can say is that the current government is authoritarian in a way I find terrifying, has a really evil streak running through it, and someone needs to be punished.

    I don’t know who deserves the punishment, though.

  116. I’d love for America, World Police, to jump in and heroically save the oppressed and helpless in Iran – but that tactic hasn’t worked very well so far. What can we do? What’s the solution? Surely it isn’t for us to just butt out?

  117. First of all, let it be clear, this is the face of the Iranian Mullahs and Ayatollahs.

    The death of this girl and of any other people during the protests is the direct responsibility of Iran’s hierarchy, this includes Mr Ahmadinijead and Ayatollah Jamenei.

    Having said this, the US has no moral or legal authority to meddle in the matters of the Iranian people.

    The US has never defended freedom, this is a fallacy that only the US people seem to believe.

    The course taken by the Obama administration is the moral, correct one. So much meddling from the US has tainted democratic movements elsewhere where the memories of the US meddling are fresh and painful.

    Do you want to help the Iranian people? Realize that you can’t do anything about this, support your government on staying out of a matter that is not theirs to solve, and influence international bodies to put the necessary pressure on the Ayatollahs to make sure they understand the displeasure of the civilized world about this and other outrages.

    You would achieve far more by convincing China and Russia about the need for sanctions and condemnation than by your solitary, discredited sable rattling.

  118. Falix: Again, it’s not necessarily about America.

    When American’s are telling Obama to condemn the Iranian government, it sure the hell is about America.

    I think nobody here needs a history lesson.

    Some clearly do.

    And it wouldn’t be “support” to endorse Mousavi who wouldn’t get rid of the theocracy.

    It wouldn’t be “support” to “endorse”?????


    But most importantly, Iranians don’t necessarily hate “us” (the western world).

    What? If you were an alive during the Shah’s rule, if you remember the Iranian revolution, if you remember the American hostages at the embassy in Iran, then it was clearly about “us” specifically.

    I’m going to take a shot in the dark here and a wild guess that you weren’t old enough to remember the hostage situation. THere are a lot of Iranians and Americans who are old enough to remember it. It isn’t some hypothetical crap taught in some school room. It was real people, real lives.

    You watch video of Neda’s death and it makes it real for you. I watched the news back in the 70’s and that made it real for me.

    It’s to buy into the rants of the fundamentalists who govern the country to say and believe such a thing. Iran’s youth has outgrown the cold war set of mind.


  119. As horrific as it is remember they are protesting for voter irregularities. Much the same as the irregularities that plagued our last election. Where is the heart, the passion of the American people? We can barely be pulled away from our non-fat double latte’s to vote much less protest. Wake up America before we have to go through something like this.

  120. “I don’t know who deserves the punishment, though.”

    Who killed Neda?

    A professional psychopath secret policeman with a sniper rifle? A dung-breathed 15 year-old bumpkin with a madrassa-grade “education” who had a gun thrust into his hands and was told to go forth and “defend the Islamic Revolution”? Whoever invented Islam? Whoever invented religion?

    How about the current dictators of Iran? Or should the Shah be blamed? Or America and Britain who created the Shah? The oil companies? The petroleum industry? Henry Ford? The first petro-chemical chemists?

  121. Greg London,

    If the only way you have at your disposal to out-debate someone is by telling them to get off your lawn, then you are a poor advocate for your position.

    Please seek better arguments.

  122. Takuan, you have to start somewhere – let’s begin with the shooter and go from there.

    Yeah, easier said than done.

    I’m with the “Get America involved” side. But involved in a way that doesn’t cause more horror and bloodshed. Emotionally, – well I don’t want to go there, it would just involve more sniper rifles. I just don’t want this to be forgotten.

  123. @ackpht, June 22, 2009 8:49 AM

    Last time “you felt that YOU ought to do something” dear American, you didn’t even bother to count the dead people amongst the “collateral damage” once you acted.

    The amount of Nedas among the Iraqi civilian population during the baseless invasion of Iraq is something we will never know, YouTube was of no help to document this.

    But that is what happens when you act aimlessly to say the least, or worst, with an evil intent.

    So please, save us the bravado, we are tired of it.

    The Rest Of Us.

  124. @Ackpht:

    Please don’t feel. Think!

    As for non-military intervention ideas… I wouldn’t be having this dilemma if I had any reasonable and useful ideas. That’s why I’m talking about it in the first place. I have the feeling that everything we can come up with as individuals, can only be useful to a certain extent. There’s this voice in my head (no I’m not mad ^^) that keeps telling me that setting up proxies is nice, but won’t change a lot (will do it with a friend who has available servers tomorrow). Do you have any ideas?!

    @Greg London:

    When American’s are telling Obama to condemn the Iranian government, it sure the hell is about America.

    But when I’m saying that neutrality isn’t an option it isn’t, that’s what I meant.

    It wouldn’t be “support” to “endorse”?????

    I admit it was clumsily phrased. To support Mousavi wouldn’t be of any actual help to the Iranians. But you know what I meant.

    I watched the news back in the 70’s and that made it real for me.

    Soooo what? I’ll say it again if it wasn’t clear enough: Iran’s youth has outgrown the cold war set of mind.

  125. No haven’t forgotten, it was just a little more blatant in the last one. If they would just institute a photo ID requirement at the polling locations, many of the issues could be laid to rest.

  126. Begin: Sarcasm

    This is, indeed, a cause solely for the Iranians. One side has tanks, armies, helicopter, snipers (as the video shows) and (soon) nuclear weapons. The other side has goodness and niceness. The forces of goodness and niceness can easily win if their hearts are pure and their cause is just using this technology:

    Think, for example, of the Palestinian situation. Clearly this is a cause solely for the Palestinians. After all, what are we going to do about that? Invade Israel?

    How does their situation affect us and our daily lives? I mean, sure we’ve all seen some nasty videos from Gaza but are any of you going to remember them when the next trendy story comes along? Just because there are a lot of videos and pictures posted does it make it any more serious and important than what’s happening in Chechnya or North Korea?

    I am also reminded of previous appalling interferences in South African domestic affairs just because of some people’s personal quibbles with their relations with the Autonomous Homelands and some zoning and employment policies that they had.

    Remember, there are no alternatives in these situations other than sitting on our fat asses going Tut-tut! Tut-tut! and a full-scale military invasion and occupation. Concern for our fellow humans must, as a matter of all-around convenience for the governments of the world, end at those magical, mystical lines on the map which the Rand-McNally map company calls Borders. It’s not like there are any organisations whose names end in ….Without Borders now, is there?

    What, really, is at stake here for people outside of Iran? It’s not like countries that treat their citizens as disposable pets are any more likely to go to war than those who have answer for a lot of dead citizens at the ballot box. Just ask President Johnson about that fallacy.

    End: Sarcasm

  127. Finally someone articulate enough to express what I wanted to from the beginning. Thanks Nadreck.

  128. Sorry I’m confused, actually the lol goes at skipper @ 165 for his suggesting that the results of the last U.S elections were false.

    And about Nadrecks comment, on a second read it’s not quite exactly what I would agree with entirely. I’d be contradicting myself otherwise. :P Still, I’m on your side in the first paragrpah…

  129. what can anyone do in the UK, people want to do something, are there protests organised here? Any info anyone?

  130. while I feel sorry for her family that her death is witnessed my possibly millions of people, it may take that kind of an impact to move the right people the right direction.
    The US needs to let the young people of Iran know that we support them in which ever direction they decide to turn.

  131. a small suggestion: do you own a Nokia phone? Email Nokia and ask them what they are doing to provide information to defeat their monitoring software that is in the hands of the regime that killed Neda.

  132. Neda, may your eyes become the seed crystals
    of a people’s maturation
    your blood, water their fertile imagination.
    Neda was the voice that died in silence.
    Awaken now, we call to you
    lay down your vengeance
    flow irresistibly
    to tired fields long trodden under foot
    that whisper or remember not
    their verdance.

  133. Is there something similar as Godwin’s law for this? “As a comment’s thread discussion grows longer, the probability of an angry republican bashing Obama approaches 1.”

    Nice one Takuan. I don’t own a Nokia phone though.

  134. um, failix, skipper was indicating that the results of the last IRANIAN election were less obviously skewed.

    But you knew that. Less fail please.

  135. Hey, there’s a reason for my nickname. ;)

    But I don’t think you’re right, read his previous post and the question Takuan asked him. Antinous seems to have understood the same thing btw.

  136. NYT: As Blogs are Censored, It’s Kittens to the Rescue

    [T]here is something satisfying about a country being assisted by ordinary bloggers who suddenly show their skills in organizing and belief in basic political principles. It harks back to heroes like the Roman leader Cincinnatus, a farmer who had to be persuaded to lead the republic in a time of need and after succeeding quickly returned to the farm. Any functioning society needs professional politicians, just as any modern society needs political blogs, but it is good to be reminded that leadership and political voices can come from other ranks.

  137. question:

    is the best way to kill a theocracy making people rich?

    Where will the thugs come from if everyone is prosperous?

  138. I feel like I’m living Charles Stross’ Halting State. To everyone who says ‘we’, by which I assume they mean America, should be doing something, don’t assume ‘we’ aren’t. There is an untold story here.

    We know that groups like 4chan and Fark are doing something by providing tools for those within Iran to communicate outward. We can also assume that there are other groups (possibly US military or CIA, but not necessarily), doing more involved hacks to help as best they can as well. It’s really the first war fought via cyberspace and the shot that was heard around the world is echoing right this moment.

  139. failix@164: I’ll say it again if it wasn’t clear enough: Iran’s youth has outgrown the cold war set of mind.

    Yes or no: You were born sometime after 1980?

    I’m guessing yes. Am I correct?

    The reason you so easily dismiss 25 years of torture that the Shah imposed on Iran due to American puppeteering him into power, is because you don’t remember it.

    Anyone old enough to actually remember 1979, is going to still harbor some feelings about it. that means anyone older than, say, 35 or 36 years old. Assuming you were a 5 or 6 year old in Iran in 1979, I’m guessing you were old enough to remember it. ANd if you didn’t remember it, your parents sure as hell were old enough to remember it.

    And I finally figured out what this meant:

    But most importantly, Iranians don’t necessarily hate “us” (the western world). It’s to buy into the rants of the fundamentalists who govern the country to say and believe such a thing. Iran’s youth has outgrown the cold war set of mind.

    If you’ll notice, John McCain, the man who only months ago was singing “Bomb, Bomb, Bomb Iran” is calling for Obama to come out and condemn the Iranian government, to call the election a fraud, to demand a new vote.

    The cold-war warriors aren’t the ones saying “don’t get involved in Iran, they still hate us from the cold war”. The cold-war warriors, and the neocons and the hawks are all about America getting in Iran’s face about the election and force the Ayatollah out.

    And to hell with the consequences.

    The people who are saying,

    “hey, wait a sec, these people have well deserved anger towards the US. If we endorse or support or back one iranian candidate, it will polarize a lot of Iran against that candidate.”

    Those people arent the cold warriors, they’re not the fundamentalists, they’re not the nutjobs, they’re not the guys who are singing about bombing Iran just a few months ago.

    It’s people who realize that anyone in their upper 30’s (or older) in Iran has direct personal experience with the kind of empirialistic shit that America has pulled on Iran before.

    So, you’ve got it entirely backwards.

    It’s not fundamentalists who are saying a lot of Iranians have a grudge against america, it’s people who have a grasp of relatively recent (though older than you) history.

  140. Just the fact that a 26 year old woman who had nothing to do with that crap is dead makes me feel so fucking sad. Wish they can live peacefully.. I fucking don’t understand the logic behind shooting and killing people.

    Am not tryin to be racist but ffs ask that god of yours to bless you wid some shame and sense..


  141. For those who want to immediately aid the Iranian students and the opposition protests, here are just a few condensed ‘soft power’ options:

    -I would like to bump Mooz’s suggestion of TOR– extremely useful for those needing internet anonymity and to bypass censorship of information.

    -Consider volunteering at your local NPR broadcast center. By giving your time freely to public radio, you can increase others’ awareness of this situation. More people informed means more people perhaps wanting to get involved.

    -I’d like to bump also Takuan’s suggestion of contacting Nokia. They need to know that world consumers are on to them and their direct involvement in selling information which leads to brutality and violations of human rights.

    -Consider posting links and videos of what injustices you have seen online, on social networks and blogs (facebook, wordpress, livejournal, myspace. Re-uploading the file’s content not only cuts down on bandwidth use of the original but provides for multiple locations of the same file, which makes it harder to censor.

    -Contacting state and federal representatives can be a looming task, but they represent their constituents. If enough people ask for representation in a matter, it would be in their best interest to do their representational job.

    -Contact congressional representatives who sit on the Foreign Affairs Appropriation’s Sub-Committee concerning increased funding to Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and Radio Farda (RF being Iran’s now jammed radio station). These broadcast stations all serve as alternative radio stations and bring much needed information to what state funded radio might or might not provide.

    -Consider taking this to the streets and raising awareness that way. Making yourself seen and heard in a civil, intelligent, sympathetic, and collected fashion can lead others to get involved.

    Just some ideas I had amongst others already submitted. Happy to hear more.

  142. Another example of humanity’s inhumanity unto itself… It’s so tragic to watch something like this and know i too have to be a member of this godforsaken race.

  143. I am from the United States. I just saw this video for the first time. This is appalling. From what I’ve read, she was just stepping out of the car to stretch. Our hearts and prayers go out to young Neda, her family, and her friends.

  144. ohhh its really so sad to shoot the woman… its shown the bad control of police and government of Iran. I think all of the world think about it and solve the problem of Iran…

  145. For those of you who have been pondering on what to do I have this perspective. The U.S and pretty much that of the western world is going through an INTERVENTION withdraw! Similar to withdraws of druggies when they stop using their drugs. The American government is so used to intervening in other countries and changing regimes (Middle East, East Asia, South America, Latin America, etc., etc) that at this point it just doesn’t know what to do with itself!!! Although I am not an Obama fan I say we finally have a leader with enough balls to say to U.S venture capitalist/imperialist-no more!!

  146. I’m glad this was posted. I consider it good education for Americans to see what’s happening outside of their very sheltered lives. We from third world countries and/or oppressive governments live with murder as part of our daily lives. In my country, the Philippines, people have become apathetic because murder is so commonplace. And violence is rampant because the criminal justice system is so corrupt. Seeing death on video is probably one real way to still stir emotions and defeat apathy, and inspire people to change their governments.
    A member of my family was gunned down at close range and died brutally too. He was never given justice because the rich murderer is a close friend of the secretary of justice. If it was me who was gunned down, I would want a video of my death plastered everywhere to expose the bias of the secretary of justice towards the rich killer. You have to use every material that you have, and the gorier ones are the most effective in inspiring collective outrage which would eventually result in defeating the oppressors and murderers.
    I am very glad and thankful that this was posted everywhere over and over again. Then other countries will know and understand what we have to go through in our “regular” lives, living under oppressive and corrupt governments.
    Jen Gan, Philippines

  147. It’s after viewing insane acts like the killing of Neda that make me so thankful that I live in America. I hope the protestors can change the corrupt and vile leaders in their country. I hope it doesn’t come to that here in the U.S. God Bless you Neda. I hope the killer rots in hell.

  148. There are no insignificant deaths. Condolences to all of the victims of the human reality today. All are equal.

  149. The Qur’an, Maryam 71-72, warns even Ayatollahs that they may remain in Hell. Probably for this very reason.

  150. We (USA) can NOT get involved with this! The video is horrible, but the cold hard fact of the matter is that we will step into a horrible beehive if we intervene. The publishing of this is meant to get a knee jerk reaction, “We have to do something.” That is how we got into the mess we’ve been in lately.

    Go Obama for staying neutral and stay that way!

  151. The person who shot this girl was a coward, a slimy yellow bellied coward, only a coward does something like this to an unarmed person. The bravest person here was the girl.

  152. People in Iran unfortunately are going to continue living under oppressive and corrupt governments unless the military decides to no longer take orders from the current power hungry nutjobs. Only then the government buildings could be stormed by the people and finally restore rightful power to the people.

  153. As a Chinese who survived June 4/89 Beijing Tian-An-Men Massacre, I say this to Iranian Authorities ordering the killing of innocent people: 1> Do you know Deng Xiao Ping – The Patriarch Chinese Leader in 1989 who gave order to kill Chinese pro-democracy demonstrators – asked his ashes be scattered into the ocean after his death! WHY??? What was he afraid of??? Deng knew so well that he was going down into history as a Murderer!!! 2> Do you know, even today, 20 years later, NO ONE, NOT a single ONE in the entire Chinese government, has ever admitted he or she gave the order alongside Deng nor claimed the credit of “saving the Red China from subversive forces?”

  154. The person who shot this girl was a coward, a slimy yellow bellied coward, only a coward does something like this to an unarmed person. The bravest person here was the girl.

    From my heart exactly buddy…

  155. Iranian peopole is decided to shut down this regime. We’ll do it ! Revolution is already started.

  156. the US must get involved. we cannot stand around here while injustice is being done. this is no different than when hitler and stalin were killing innocent people.

  157. I totally agree with the comment made earlier in regards to Obama remaining nuetral on the Iranian subject. We are in Afghanastan, just barely departing from Iraq, and we get threats from NK, and now the Iranian crisis. Our economy is hardly stable. These other countries would love to see us fall farther. We spread ourselves way too thin. America can only do so much. We have also seen shocking videos of our troops being blown to hell and back. Also, I don’t hear the same outrage with the unjust killings in Africa. My heart goes out to the family of Neda. But America’s not all that stable itself right now. Some of these countries simply must do better at housing themselves. Like stated earlier it seems people want to point at Obama, who’s only been in office for 5 months to be Superman. The nuclear weapons were on Bush’s watch. They’re all hoping he fails (Obama). We can’t play big brother all the time, where are all the other countries as these horrors play out. It’s always on the US shoulders. Well, hopefully not this time, clean your house. Like we’re trying do ours!

  158. My sister sent me this song about Neda that made me cry at work. I have family in Tehran, and have not slept much this week. There is too much to be said, too much to be done.

  159. You cannot stay neutral in the face of tyranny and murder. We in this age have gotten complacent, and have let thinkers who think for themselves and cannot act run our governments. Others have murderers and lunatics that take over and oppress beautiful children of God and use the name of God as their right. Men such as this are the enemies of God. They are Satan’s fools from hell. There is a line. There is right and wrong. We have to stand for right, for good in the face of this kind of evil, even if it costs our life in this world. Even this far after her death, I still cry and pray for her soul and her family, and her boyfriend even though Im Christian and they are Muslim. May God Almighty have mercy on every one of them, and smite their enemies.

  160. Man, that girl’s death was pretty senseless and sad. I wish luck to those who wish to change an environment where their own paramilitary thugs can murder unarmed young women at protest.

    Western governments should stay out if they’re wise. The people of Iran will decide their own destiny.

  161. I saw the HBO documentary about this beautiful young lady early this morning and it tells the story of a women that needed to tell the world about the injustices that happen in Iran in the film Neda’s mother tells us how worried she is for her daughter and calls her every half hour begging her to come home. You can see the anguish in her mothers face, the mother seems to sense that something terrible is going to happen to her precious child. What a shame that Neda had to pay the ultimate price in trying to make a change. I can only pray that her precious life was not giving in vain. May her family find peace and know that at the very lease i will always think about her sacrifice.

  162. Neda is a symbol now .. a pure one .. untouched by any doubt or shadows .. no one can find fault on her .. she’s a true martir and only sick people don’t see that .. like those sick iranians who are with the govt.. hope one day they will pay for this.. including all those so called iranian religious leaders who are nothing short of sadic soulless animals .. who need psychological treatment or prison for life …

  163. I used to respect the current government of Iran trying to bring good example of an islamic nation following the teaching of the profit but after seeing this vedio, I have a different view. This is the most protal way. Nada was walking with her father in a peacfull manners and than was shot with no reason. Isn’t this the same way that the Shah did for the same people who are in the government now. What a shame

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