The ayatollahs in Iran have put an end to its people desire for reform by essentially rigging yesterday’s presidential elections in favor of incumbent President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. According to authorities, Mr. Ahmadinejad garnered 62.3% of the vote. His main rival, popular candidate, Mir Hussein Moussavi received 34% of the votes cast. Pre-election polling had Mr. Moussavi leading all candidates. In 2005, Mr. Ahmadinejad became president receiving 62% of the popular vote.
What makes this election rather odd is the anomaly of the results for the last place finisher, Mehdi Karroubi who received a paltry 300,000 votes. In 2005, he finished third in polling receiving over 5,000,000 votes. Mr. Karroubi decried the results. Mr. Moussavi has publicly claimed victory while calling the results fraudulent. There has been sporadic violence through out the country. Skirmishes between Moussavi supporters and police have lead to the death of one protester.
It is a shame that in this era of political awakening through out the world, the Supreme Council of Iran has decided to “steal” the elections. The people’s desire for reform is undeniable. As Iran tries to join the nuclear club of nations, it has shown, through this sham election that its political conscience is no more sophisticated than that of Zimbabwe. Much like the neo-conservative movement was thrown out of power in this country in 2008; the Iranian people have expressed their desire to shift away from their archaic theocracy.
Will there be real change in Iran? I doubt it. Will the protests escalate into a full blown revolution? The next few days will tell.