Revolution #169, June 28, 2009
From A World to Win News Service
Saturday, Azadi Street, Tehran
June 22, 2009. A World to Win News Service. Speaking at the June 19 Friday night prayers, Iran's "Supreme Leader" Ayatollah Ali Khamenei warned that further demonstrations would not be tolerated. The thousands who came out into the streets of Tehran the next day knew what they would be facing. This was the most violent day—on both sides—since the upsurge began.
Tehran, 4 - 6 pm: side streets and alleys around the Azadi metro station
Sound of helicopters. Shooting. Smell of gunpowder. Teargas. Constant ambulance sirens.
People roaring. Nobody is chanting, "Give me my vote back" anymore. People hardly remember that it was electoral fraud that set everything off.
Shouts of "Death to dictators!" are constantly heard.
Paving stones are broken up. Everybody takes some pieces.
Charge! We attack and talk.
Blood brings blood. They have to pay for the last 30 years. They have to answer for those they executed. They are finished.
Don't be afraid. Watch for the roofs. The Basiji are shooting from up there. Listen guys [not gender specific], we're not alone. From Tupkhoone to all Tehran, people are out there. Everybody is fighting. In the streets, and in the back streets and alleys.
Things are getting worse: no, this is great.
Be calm. They'll kill everybody: No, they can't. They're showing their teeth. But they're scared. They're the ones in crisis, not us. It was the Leader who was crying and pleading [during his speech the night before], not us.
[Opposition candidate Mir Hossein] Mousavi is on Jeyhoon street. They say he has washed his body [symbolizing preparations for death—Mousavi had said he was ready for martyrdom.] I hate all this talk about martyrdom; we're sick of it.
Hey, guys, bring some tissues. Light a fire. It's teargas. Don't wet your face. Make some smoke.
Hey, Majid, don't waste rocks. You threw a stone at his head. Can't you see he has a helmet on? Aim better, man.
Police station, Basij station, we should take them over and get some weapons. They say guys down the street attacked a Basij post.
They look like the Israeli soldiers we see on television.
The slogan resounds everywhere: "People, what are you waiting for? Iran has turned into Palestine!"
Somebody says, But even Palestine has been fighting for 60 years and hasn't won yet. Another person says, Because they have conciliatory leaders. A third person says, Because you can't answer bullets with stones.
They're right and looking for a path to victory in the middle of the battlefield.
Guys, get back, they're coming! Hey people, leave all your doors open.
Lets move towards Shadmehr.
Shadmehr Street, 6 - 7 pm
"Death to dictators!" "Death to Khamenei!" "Death to dictators, whether Leader or doctor!" [Ahmadinejad has a doctorate.]
The street is filled with smoke. Fires are lit everywhere to neutralize the effect of teargas. Those in the middle of the street, young women and men, have armed themselves with something. Some have batons snatched from the repressive forces during battles.
Hey, mister, back up! Don't park your car at the end of the street! These streets are people's only escape route!
"Down with the coup government!" "Dictator, shame on you, let go of the presidency!"
Guys, let's build barricades.
Stones and wood are collected. An old man says, that's right, my children—do you want a soft drink?
Somebody says, This is revolution. Another says, This is the beginning of the revolution. A third person says, It's just like during the Shah. And a fourth person, Yes, it started in 1965 the first time Khomeini rose against the Shah, and then continued in 1979. Another says, No, that's not right, that's just their propaganda. The 1979 revolution belonged to the people, the people made the revolution, they just rode on it, stole it, and said it was the continuation of '65. Somebody else says, The last few days have concentrated months. Another asks, What's gonna happen now? And she answers herself, It all depends on us.
Oh oh, guys, they're coming. Go into houses. (People leave their doors open so that protestors can take refuge in them.)
Somebody says, Hey, why did you run away? He answers, this isn't running away, it's called retreat, and it's a law of war. All of a sudden, Hey hey, what happened? What's going on?
They're beating them up! They beat up three of them! Who's 'they'? They're beating people? No, we're beating them! People grabbed three motorcycle riders [Basij attackers] and gave them a good beating.
Excitement reaches the skies.
They deserve it. That's what to do.
The slogan "Death to Khamenei" shakes the street. Somebody says: that's the end. This slogan means the end of it.
Sattar Khan Bridge, around 8 pm
People and security forces are fighting at very close quarters.
Guys, let's deal with the ones who've written "Protectors of people's security. Helpers of the Leader" on their shield.
Somebody says, "They're just poor things. They're like us." Another says, "They came to kill us!" A young woman is seriously injured. People take her away from the skirmishes and hide her in a house. Somebody goes to get a doctor. News comes that the van that is coming; it carries two of our injured. Make way so that we can get them somewhere safe before they're arrested! Everybody moves out of the way.
Aria Shahr (Sadeghiye Square), around 9 pm
An angry torrent of people is flowing through the square and streets. There are fires everywhere Cries of "Death to dictators!" are shaking the square. The repressive forces are helpless. They keep throwing teargas. People help each other. They teach each other how to counter the effects of teargas. They hug each other. Kiss each other. Shake hands. A warm feeling has overtaken everybody. A feeling of satisfaction. Of resistance and struggle. The pride of not surrendering.
A World to Win News Service is put out by A World to Win magazine (aworldtowin.org), a political and theoretical review inspired by the formation of the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement, the embryonic center of the world’s Marxist-Leninist-Maoist parties and organizations.
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