Iran takes Nobel Peace Prize Away from Shirin Ebadi
In the first time ever in the history of the Nobel Peace Prize, the Iranian government has taken the prize away from the Nobel Laureate Shirin Ebadi. Government officials seized the prize from Ms. Ebadi’s safety deposit box along with other assets. The government of Iran has been under major pressure since the dissent that followed the fraudulent election of this summer. Protesters took the streets in the millions defying Ahmadenijad and Khameini. Since then, Iran has taken a harsher stance against the opposition movement by jailing, executing, and detaining hundreds of protesters and human rights activists. The harassment of Nobel Laureate Ebadi is the most recent example of this type of repression. Government officials accused Ms. Ebadi of not paying taxes on her 1.3 million dollar prize even though taxes on this type of prize are exempt under Iranian law. To read more, click here AP.
Iran’s posturing and desperation is apparent in not only their massive human rights violations, crushing of free speech, and suppresion of dissent of any kind, but also their refusal to acquiesce on the nuclear issue in any regard. In the eyes of the Iranian regime, there is nothing that they can gain from giving up a nuclear program which would increase their hegemony in the region and allow them to defy Western dominance using the North Korea method of stalling intervention by making minor concessions while concealing their real activities. The director of the IAEA, Mohamed ElBaradei, stated that Iran has not cooperated in any significant way regarding their nuclear ambitions in the past year. To read more, click here NYTimes.