In an act that has probably sealed their doom, the Islamic religious government of Iran brutally murdered a young woman by shooting her in the heart as she stood next to her father at a protest march. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei of Iran has threatened the protesters with violence and death. This weekend he delivered on his promise when one of his thugs murdered a woman in front of cell phone cameras. These cameras have enabled the world to watch the brutal horror that comes from a religious government. The girl is Neda Soltan, a 26-year-old philosophy student. She does not know it, but the blood that runs from her in the video is probably going to drown Iran’s government in relatively short order.
The photo in this post is from the cell-phone video taken as the woman was dying in the arms of a friend, as he and a doctor tried to help her. It is one of the most upsetting and horrifying videos I have ever seen in my entire life. I can’t bring myself to link to it directly from here, but it is everywhere on the internet and has become an iconic rallying cry for the uprising in Iran. It would seem that the uprising is actually starting to threaten the barbaric government of Iran and this video is most likely the signal that everyone has been waiting for. It is the signal for the people of Iran to wipe out their government. I am not speaking in metaphor. I fully support the complete removal of Iran’s religious government by any means necessary. There are no peaceful means to remove despots like these. No government of this nature has ever been removed by peaceful means. There’s only one way to do it.
Cell phone cameras are powerful when aimed at the brutal actions of a state. For all of Iran’s efforts at shutting down the internet and email and text messaging, they cannot stop a simple bystander with a cell phone camera from taking a video that turns the entire world into active participants in the destruction of a totalitarian regime. This power of the little camera in the hands of the protester or the onlooker is why police officers in Great Britain are hiding their identities while beating up photographers at protests, why they are confronting them and stealing their photos. It’s why we are able to catch and prosecute a cop in Oakland, California who shoots a kid in the back while he’s lying helplessly on his stomach. The cell phone camera is a gun. Aim it. Shoot it. And watch the bastards fall.
As brutal as this horrific group of clerics in Iran may be, we in the ‘West’ are starting to immitate them in disturbing ways. Our governments are becoming increasingly nervous about photographs. The United States president is currently hiding photographs that allegedly show prisoners being raped and tortured. Police forces everywhere are increasingly using suspected terrorism as an excuse to harrass and assault people who are simply taking photos on public streets. This happens even though there is no evidence that a terrorist has ever used a camera to photograph a potential attack site. The gradual assault on photography by law enforcement in Western nations is an assualt on freedom of expression and freedom of information that resembles very closely the assualt on freedoms by Iran. At some point, camera manufacturers will be required to install a shut-off mechanism that can be activated remotely by the government during times of unrest. As usual, I am not even close to kidding.