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.
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.
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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