As many analysts anticipated, the annual Ashura holiday in Iran (the commemoration of the martyrdom of Imam Hossein -- grandson of the prophet Mohammed -- and his followers at the hands of the Ummayyad regime) has inspired renewed protests by the green opposition movement that emerged after Iran's bogus elections in June. The intensity of the protests may have been boosted by the week of mourning for respected opposition cleric Ayatollah Montazeri.
The news coming out of Iran is brutal. According to this website, these are the most intense protests to date. Several people have been killed by security forces, and there are numerous examples of protesters fighting back and winning local clashes against the regime's thugs. There are also unconfirmed reports of police refusing to fire an protesters.
The government suppressed the massive demonstrations that occurred six months ago. Fear and a sense of helplessness kept more and more people inside, and the size of the protests waned. However, they seem to have come back now with a vengeance.
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