Ahead of Iran’s presidential election in June, President Ahmadinejad and Supreme Leader Khamenei are squabbling over the succession. Ahmadinejad wants Esfandiar Rahim Mashaei, his chief of staff, to run but Khamenei disapproves. Regardless of who wins, the real loser will be Iranian democracy.
RSS readers take raw feeds of data—headline, text, timestamp, etc.—and display that information in a stripped-down interface along with many other feeds, which is what makes them so efficient. (Here is the RSS feed for Quartz.) Less obvious is how many RSS readers, including Google’s, serve as anti-censorship tools for people living under oppressive regimes. That’s because it’s actually Google’s servers, located in the U.S. or another country with uncensored internet, that accesses each feed. So a web user in Iran just needs access to google.com/reader in order to read websites that would otherwise be blocked.
Amos Chapple is a travel photographer who made the following pictures over the course of three visits to the Islamic Republic of Iran between December 2011 and January 2013. The New Zealand freelancer said he “was amazed by the difference in western perceptions of the country, and what I saw on the ground… I think because access for journalists is so difficult, people have a skewed image of what Iran is — the regime actually want to portray the country as a cauldron of anti-western sentiment so they syndicate news footage of chanting nutcases which is happily picked up by overseas networks. For ordinary Iranians though, the government is a constant embarrassment. In the time I spent there I never received anything but goodwill and decency, which stands in clear contrast to my experience in other middle eastern countries. I met an American special forces soldier in Kyrgyzstan last year who said when it comes to the Middle East, America has the wrong friends and the wrong enemies.” [Above] is a selection of Chapple’s recent photographs of Iran, captions provided by the photographer.
It didn’t help that the First Lady opened the envelope.
“In a rare occasion in Oscar history, the First Lady announced the winner for Best Picture for the anti-Iran Film Argo, which is produced by the Zionist company Warner Bros,” Fars News said, revealing what they really think about the powers that be in Washington and Hollywood. (ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images // FARS)
Ahmadinejad says he’s willing to sacrifice his life for Iran’s ambitious space program.
His comments were reported on Monday by the official IRNA news agency.
Iran sent a monkey into space last Monday, describing the launch a successful step toward Tehran’s plan to send an astronaut into space within the next five to six years. (Mohammad Agah/IRNA/AFP/Getty Images)
Grand Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the supreme leader of Iran since 1989, may or may not have some interest in nuclear technology, but he is not especially known as an early adopter when it comes to social media tech. And yet the unelected septuagenarian, after successfully launching his Twitter account (almost 3,000 tweets, over 4,000 followers, and not following a soul), has taken to Instagram. Instagram!
Nuclear weapons are hard to build for managerial reasons, not technical ones. This is why so few authoritarian regimes have succeeded: they don’t have the right culture or institutions. When it comes to Iran’s program, then, the United States and its allies should get out of the way and let Iran’s worst enemies — its own leaders — gum up the process on their own. Read the full article.