There’s No Going Back
The controversy surrounding the Iranian presidential election has not only done damage to Iran but has also polarized the Shia community abroad on the issue. Iranian nationals within the Muslim community have either recognized the election results as legitimate, sided with the Supreme Leader’s decision to end any probing into election fraud, or have voiced discontent with the regime’s unwillingness to investigate the election results.
As demonstrations in Los Angeles have attracted majorly those who would not identify with the values of the Islamic Republic (most protesters don’t even use the current flag of Iran when demonstrating), those identifying with those values have debated the outcome of the election fiercely.
Those defending the legitimacy of the election have sited the disconnection of the liberal “elite” from the masses of Iranians outside of Tehran as the cause of mass protests and an overall attitude of being sore losers in the election. In addition, Iranian voices of opposition have been dismissed by this group as supporting foreign enemies (Mossad, MKO, CIA, etc) bent on the collapse of the Islamic Republic. For some this may be a class conflict but when it comes down to it, is a question of transparency.
Iranians voicing their criticism of the elections have been harshly criticized by even non-Iranians who admire the institution of the IRI and intend on doing their part in what they feel is upholding the Islamic Republic and/or their loyalty to a Marja Taqlid.
Iranians who have aligned themselves with their government in the past and are now questioning its methods have seen this election as the breaking point for their trust in their leaders. The widespread media censorship, communication lockdown, police/ Basij/ military brutality against civilians has eroded the trust of Iranian nationals for their government.
At this point, I believe that some Mousavi supporters would have preferred Ahmadinejad to have won the election fairly and transparently rather than the current situation which has spiraled out of control on both sides. However, we find ourselves at the point of no return and there is no easy solution to all of this, so let’s stop acting like the answer is going to come from out of the sky.