Execution, Inc.: Quick tutorial for Peter Beaumont on an Iranian moderate’s first 100 days

A guest post by Gidon Ben-Zvi

Peter Beaumont, foreign affairs editor for the Guardian and Observer, argued in a November 30 article that the interim deal inked in Geneva between Iran and the world’s six leading powers could, “redraw the map of an area that has been gripped by conflict or the threat of conflict for generations.”  Specifically with regards to Israel, Beaumont notes that “An Iran a step further back from conflict with Israel, and potentially minded to meddle less in the region, would be a good thing if Tehran sticks to its part of the deal.”

Beaumont is placing his faith in a regime founded on the systematic suppression of Iranian citizens and dissidents – a nearly thirty-five year record of domestic oppression which has been facilitated to a large extent by a decidedly expansionist foreign policy. Indeed, creating scapegoats – such as Iraq, Israel and the United States – for tens of millions of Iranians to target their rage and misery allows Iran’s ruling clerics to legitimize their barbarity under the cloak of religion.

Beaumont believes that that the “…diplomacy that led to the interim six-month agreement is the first indication that [Iran’s] new president Hassan Rouhani now sees the benefit of negotiating solutions to the region’s problems.”

However, Rouhani’s domestic policy to date is one marked by executions, persecution, torture, denial of political rights and a general assault on the rule of law.

Frequently hailed at the Guardian as a moderate and a pragmatist, the Iranian leader’s actions over the course of his first 100 days in office leave little doubt that – behind the diplomatic window dressing – little has changed. In fact, since Rouhani’s election, the rate of executions has actually accelerated.  Iran’s regime imposed the death penalty on over 200 people during Rouhani’s tenure, including a record number of 50 executions during a two-week period in September. So far in 2013, Iran has executed more than 400 of its citizens.

Ahmed Shaheed, the UN special rapporteur on human rights in Iran, said in a report presented to the General Assembly on October 31 that he’s “alarmed by the spate of executions.” 

And while Rouhani’s rhetoric inspired hope in Geneva, it is not being matched by his regime’s draconian policies vis-a-vis Iran’s minorities. The best hope for peace in our time’s government continues to disregard the rights of its Christians, Bahais, Sufis, Jews and members of other religious groups. Furthermore, homosexuality under Iranian law remains punishable by imprisonment and even the death penalty.

Yet, just when this bloody tyranny was beginning to wobble as a result of a crippling sanctions regime that was battering the nation’s economy, the thuggish Mullahs were handed a lifeline: the release of approximately $7 billion – a sum equivalent to 1.4 per cent of Iran’s entire national income.

As a result of this partial lifting of sanctions, Beaumont postulates that “Tehran’s clerical regime might now see the benefit of negotiating solutions to the region’s problems, rather than its previous angry posturing…”.

Yet the tone inside Iran has been anything but conciliatory. Here’s a direct quote from the state-controlled Press TV: “…but so far with the Geneva joint plan, the knife has scarcely been pulled out [of Iran’s economic back] three inches.”

Has ‘conflict resolution’ ever sounded more ominous?

(Gidon Ben-Zvi is a Jerusalem-based writer who regularly contributes to Times of Israel and the Algemeiner)

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14 replies »

  1. The Guardian likes everything and everybody who are either an enemy of the Us or an enemy of Israel and especially those who are against both. Being a murderous medieval fascistic regime is not a problem.
    Remember their series of articles expressing their nostalgia for the defunct ex Soviet bloc.

  2. “Has ‘conflict resolution’ ever sounded more ominous?”

    A manufactured and sour article. Whilst the word ” knife ” is unacceptable planes have dropped out of the sky due to sanctions.

    Articles like this do nothing to dispel the impression that only some Israelis and hilariously right wing Americans are unhappy with the progress in Iran.

    • Thanks for your constructive input “website”. So you have no problem with a regime that routinely murders and tortures its own citizens simply because they are the wrong religion/sex/sexuality? Do you perhaps think that the peak rate of 25 exectutions per week is acceptable or a sign of “the progress in Iran”? Perhaps some “hilarously right wing Americans” might like to see these sorts of numbers executed in Texas and Florida, but even there they show some sort of restraint. Rouhani has no such scruples, it seems.

      • Any regime that kills its own is barbaric and primitive. Any regime that uses unnecessary violence is likewise. We have killed the Iraqis at the rate of 40 per week in the last ten years …this is not a “peak rate” …this is a seriously low estimate. To single out Iran is risible.

        You are not going to get your war.

        • “You are not going to get your war.”

          Not so much a statement, but rather an accusation, and a slanderous one at that. Who is it exactly you thought you were talking to?

          You’re other comments, stats, seem a bit ‘funny.’ Singling out Iran is completely justifiable. Maybe you haven’t been paying attention.

        • We have killed the Iraqis at the rate of 40 per week in the last ten years …this is not a “peak rate” …this is a seriously low estimate.
          We?! Are you a Shia Iraqi or a Sunni one?

    • Website:
      “planes have dropped out of the sky due to sanctions.”

      Nope, planes have dropped out of the skies because Iran chose to allign itself with Cuba in 1979 and found it hard to support it’s ancient fleets.
      One must wonder why seek to build reactors which cost so much while you can’t even maintain your own civil aircrafts.

      The answer is simple.
      The people are too scared to protest and there’s nothing civil about the neuclear program.