It is time to do something-Update

Over at Bob From Brockley’s place I came across this:

Eric Lee of LabourStart writes:

As many of you will be aware, jailed Iranian labour activist Mansour Osanloo faced the loss of vision in one eye while the regime refused him medical treatment. A massive online campaign involving Amnesty International, the International Transport Workers Federation, and many thousands of LabourStart readers has resulted in Osanloo receiving the medical treatment he needed last weekend. The more than 10,000 messages you sent to the government in Tehran had a great — and immediate — impact. Thank you!

But only hours before Osanloo had his much-needed surgery, we received some very bad news from elsewhere in Iran. Last Thursday, five masked men fired seven bullets into 48-year-old Majid Hamidi, a labour activist. Iranian labour activists believe that an armed attack of this type could only have been carried out with the involvement and knowledge of the regime.
In a country where trade unionists are routinely arrested, jailed, and beaten, this represents a considerable escalation. There are fears that Iran may become one of those countries, like Colombia, where trade unionists are routinely gunned down.

We have been asked to mobilize as many of you as possible to send off urgent messages to the International Labour Organization (ILO) asking it to take action now. I am asking you to help us in two ways –

  • First, please visit the campaign page and send off your message now.
  • Second, please forward this message on to other members of your union today.

It is time for the labor unions in this country to take a more active role in the struggles within the Islamic world. If you are a union member help spread the word. If you are not, it is time to stand by them in this effort.

Others blogging: I am a Liberal

The Poor Mouth tries to put things in perspective and Terry Glavin castigates Canada:

“I’ve been called an orientalist and a neo-con,” the Iranian-Canadian writer, feminist and human rights activist Samira Mohyeddin told me the other day. “Isn’t that funny? Can you believe it?”

Sadly, yes, I can.

That’s how my latest Tyee column begins [UPDATE: For Persian readers here].

It’s about the shameful absence in Canada of any effective solidarity with Iran’s pro-democracy forces. And sure enough, one of the first responses contains the accusation that the column is “neocon propaganda,” which perfectly confirms Samira Mohyeddin’s observations, and my own, and Danny Postel’s, too.

Heh, given recent claims about myself I can certainly sympathize.

Read the whole thing.

Update: The labor movement was a key factor in undermining the Soviet Union during the cold war. Support for Solidarity and other dissident labor movements was invaluable. It is a worthy legacy that should be looked at as a model for Iran and other countries in the Islamic world.

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6 Responses to “It is time to do something-Update”

  1. on 01 Nov 2007 at 1:41 am Incognito

    That’s the sad hypocrisy of the left…(no offense) their rabid hatred of all things conservative forces them to either 1. align themselves on the opposite end of an issue or 2. remain mum about that issue, even if that means sacrificing those at the center of said issue. I find that very sad and pathetic.

    When it comes to freedom and human rights, we need to come together.

    As a conservative union member I will help spread the word.

  2. on 01 Nov 2007 at 2:19 am Lance

    As a conservative union member I will help spread the word.


    That’s the sad hypocrisy of the left…(no offense)

    None taken, we may not be the rabid right wingers the Glenn Greenwald’s of the world think we are, but we are not leftists either. Personally when it comes to resisting the dictators and totalitarians of the world I am looking for all the help we can get. Unions were instrumental in supporting solidarity and dissident labor groups in the Communist world. They need to step up here as well.

  3. on 01 Nov 2007 at 2:58 am Lance

    I should also say, that while the left as a whole has spent more time targeting George Bush than resisting totalitarianism, many, many have not behaved in that manner. Bob above is one, and the signers of the Euston Manifesto qualify as well. Other links on this topic can be found here and here and here.

  4. on 01 Nov 2007 at 3:13 am Incognito

    I have no love of the communist world and their stranglehold on freedom, but my unions are indispensible. I’ve been to Cuba, I know what lack of freedom does to the human spirit.

    I do realize there are those, like Bob, and Terry Glavin and other Euston Manifesto-ites- those who are considered neo-cons by the rabid left- who can see common ground, when dealing with totalitarianism and the threat of Islamism. I truly admire their ability to set aside differences, because that’s the only way we will be able to accomplish anything.

  5. on 01 Nov 2007 at 3:34 am Lance

    Good, I am glad we are on the same page. I hadn’t been to your blog before. I’ll rectify that. Nice piece on Myanamar. I went ahead and put it up as a link.

  6. on 02 Nov 2007 at 5:43 am Incognito

    Thank you Lance for the Burma link. sad situation over there… I’m female, by the way.. :-)

    I posted on the HBO Documentary “To Die In Jerusalem” tonight, but my next post will be on Mansour. Have it almost finished.

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