Hossein Derakhshan at PostGlobal

Hossein Derakhshan


Iranian-born Hossein "Hoder" Derakhshan is a blogger, journalist, and internet activist. Since 2001, he has been based out of Toronto, Canada, running his award-winning weblog, Editor: Myself, which has been among the most influential blogs in the Persian language. Close.

Hossein Derakhshan


Iranian-born Hossein "Hoder" Derakhshan is a blogger, journalist, and internet activist. more »

Main Page | Hossein Derakhshan Archives | PostGlobal Archives

« Previous Post | Next Post »

How Akbar Ganji Helps Buildup for Military Action Agaianst Iran

The problem I have with people like Akbar Ganji is that, while they clearly reject the military option for regime change in Iran, the alternative approach they are advocating, i.e. the human rights argument, still ultimately falls into the same agenda of regime change. It serves the same people with the same aim.

They fail to see that their human rights discourse has always been used by the Americans to press countries they don't feel comfortable with, such as Cuba, Iran, China, Syria, Venezualla, etc. -- and very recently Russia.

You can never attack a state before de-humanizing it and this is what the Americans did in before invading Iraq Iraq and it is what they are doing with Iran these days. Look how many totally false and exaggerated anti-Iranian stories are flying around by the Anglosaxon media:

  • "Iran forces Jews to wear badges": turned out to be an ugly lie spread around by a new-conservative Iranian journalist, hyped by the right-wing Canadian newspaper, National Post
  • "Iran executes teenage gay men": turned out they were not only gay, but also they had raped and murdered a few teenage boys at the the gun point.
  • "Iran arrests any blogger who criticizes the state in their blogs": turned out all the people claiming to be arrested for their blogs, were arrested for other reasons such as involvement with foreign-supported NGOs or working with American-run opposition media, but then the authorities later had found some of them had something called blogs. So they used them to add to their charges and frighten them even more. This needs an essay. It sheds light on the way the whole campaign works.
  • "Iran stones women for having sex outside marriage": turned out the judiciary has ordered a stop to the inhuman act for quite a while and the rare cases that have happened in the past decade, mostly in small cities, have been the result of a broken and inefficient hierarchy in the judiciary.
  • "Iran executes teenage girls for having pre-marital sex": turned out the girl was seen as a prostitute by the Iranian prosecutor and her execution was unusually pushed forward by a local judge in order to cover up his own involvement, using his personal connections, defying the standard procedures of appeal etc. He had also hidden the fact that the girl was not 18 years old yet, which is the legal age in Iran. The dodgy BBC documentary that made the case popular, repeatedly shown in the whole world, bluntly paints that irregular proccess as a policy of executing teenagers for pre-martial sex.
  • "Iran blocks all Western media websites such as the New York Times": turned out to be a technical mistake for 48 hours which was carelessly publicized by a press freedom watchdog, Reporters Sans Frontier, before they correct their mistake in a small note. Even Israeli news websites in English or Hebrew are all open and accessible in Iran.

What is the purpose of this nasty anti-Iranian campaign, run by watchdogs and the media, which is mostly constructed within the human rights discourse, simply because the democracy discourse doesn't really work in Iran with all these elections and high turnout and surprising results.

What Ganji et al fail to understand (or maybe they do, in which case they are total traitors) is that they are still indirectly helping the required buildup for a military attack, by pushing for more money and more resources for such nasty campaign to even have a higher impact on the public.

No matter what you feed the American human rights discourse, the output usually benefits the Americans more than the real victims.

This also has a philosophical aspect which has to do with the idea of universality of human rights or democracy that I don't want to get into now.

And also there is a business side to it, especially for the large community of exiled Iranians that I also want to get into either. Maybe later.

Please e-mail PostGlobal if you'd like to receive an email notification when PostGlobal sends out a new question.

Email the Author | Del.icio.us | Digg | Facebook

Reader Response


Post a comment

We encourage users to analyze, comment on and even challenge washingtonpost.com's articles, blogs, reviews and multimedia features.

User reviews and comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions.


PostGlobal is an interactive conversation on global issues moderated by Newsweek International Editor Fareed Zakaria and David Ignatius of The Washington Post. It is produced jointly by Newsweek and washingtonpost.com, as is On Faith, a conversation on religion. Please send your comments, questions and suggestions for PostGlobal to Lauren Keane, its editor and producer.