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Kabul Korrespondence

Fresh, factual, and funky view of Afghanistan and the surrounding Central Asian region

Momentum withering away.......

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Mir Hossein Mousavi is still nominally the guiding force of the fury over Iran's disputed election. But there are ample signs his rebel stature is being eroded by his hesitation to shift from campaigner to street agitator as his supporters challenge security forces.

The questions over Mousavi's standing are part of a larger debate over the direction of the unprecedented assault on Iran's Islamic leadership.

The size of the demonstrations has fallen sharply since Mousavi led hundreds of thousands through Tehran last week over claims of vote rigging in the June 12 presidential election. At the same time, the growing threats and firepower from security forces leave little doubt that authorities are prepared to strike back hard.

A gathering of about 200 people on Monday was quickly broken up by tear gas and shots fired into the air. On Tuesday, protesters retreated to much milder methods: honking car horns, chanting from rooftops and holding up posters denouncing the crackdown and alleged vote fraud.

It gave the clear impression of authorities gaining the upper hand, at least for the moment. Crushing the protesters' spirits and ability to regroup would likely mean even greater rewards and power for Iran's Revolutionary Guard — the Islamic regime's main military muscle and backer of hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. And it could put reformists under relentless pressure for years to come.

But it's still far too early to declare the opposition forces doomed. Protest organizers are appealing for another major rally, perhaps Thursday, in hopes of recapturing momentum and projecting their resolve. They also appear to be moving beyond Mousavi's specific call for a new election and widening their rage against the entire Islamic power structure.


Come on guys!!!!!

posted by Travis, 8:04 am

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