June 16, 2009
Posted: 1742 GMT

Hello everyone,

Yesterday, some of you obejected to my use of the term "Twitter revolution" to describe what is happening in parts of Iran right now. A few found it limiting and felt it didn't acurately reflect the wide nature of the protests and rallies that have divided segments of the Iranian population.

The term, widely circulated in the days following Iran's contentious presidential race, is not meant to reduce the political crisis to what can be tweeted in 140 character messages, but to signal the beginning of a new threat to regimes who try to suppress their citizens' messages of protest.

Governments can only control so much; messages and photos of what is happening in iran, circulated via Twitter, have made their way out. They've provided a certain measure of insight into what is happening in Iran today when added to other forms of reporting and newsgathering.

Ok, now that's out of the way, a quick note on actually reporting the Iran story. CNN's Reza Sayah is in Tehran for us today but, like other members of the foreign press, is barred from covering rallies on the streets of Tehran. So he will be live for us from another location.

We'll also be analyzing the aftermath of the presidential election with an Mahmoud Ahmadinejad supporter, Kaveh Afrasiabi, and will ask him at least one question submitted to my Twitter oage (@halagorani.) Thanks for all your suggestions.

Also today, we'll look at President' Obama's latest remarks on North Korea. He is hosting his South Korean counterpart at the White House today and answered reporter questions about the North, stating that he believed a nuclear-armed Pyogyang posed a "greave threat" to the world. We'll analyze the U.S. President's remarks.

We are still looking into reports that three Western tourists recently kidnapped Yemen were murdered and will discuss efforts to get the remaining hostages freed.

And a look at why stock markets are still feeling deflated, despite good economic news.

That, ans the rest of the day's top stories, as awlays.

See you on TV!


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Filed under: Today At The I-Desk •Twitter

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Dan   June 16th, 2009 6:13 pm ET

Nothing wrong with calling this a twitter revolution Hala, it is just one of many revolutions going on in Iran right now. I personally want to thank cnn for covering this situation in Iran so well, some say cnn is being one sided, well if showing the protests of ordinary people in the streets, because the Iranian govt wants to hide it is one sided then people need to re think what the media is here for. The international media was banned in Teheran today, only state run media was allowed to work, now thats what I call one sided!

Vincent Ferrigan   June 16th, 2009 6:15 pm ET

Democratic Dissidents now risking their lives 2 oppose Iran's sham democracy get no support from the Obama Administration. What has happened? Where is the US grand quest of liberating this world from its evil autocracies? I smell the similarity of the old fart called Carter...don't you? Is Obama the new Jimmy Carter? History in repeat.....

Melika   June 16th, 2009 7:22 pm ET

Hello, I am Iranian but I live in London. Right now I am in Iran and I see everything very closley. First of all, I personally want to thank cnn for covering this situation in my country so well and showing other people that Iranian's people are different from the government. I am one of the Mr.Mossavi's supporters. I can tell you that about 70% of people in Iran voted for Mossavi and it is obvious that they have changed the votes. I just wanted to say that we continue to protest until they consider and re-run the election. They offer to recount the votes but Mr.Mossavi and his supporters did not accept that. Yestarday seven young people were killed because of this situatioin and we continue till we get our results.

Frank   June 16th, 2009 7:28 pm ET

Hi hala,
Though the protest might not change the election results,but the point is clear to the world political leaders & election criminals who thinks election rigging to hold unto power is answer to their political ambition.let africa & especially nigeria politician take note

Jaliya Epa   June 16th, 2009 8:02 pm ET

You guys at CNN are passing judgements based on hearsay evidence or what is reported by a reporters. Most of the time integrities of these guys and guys at CNN is questionable. You guys are not honourable.

Without passing judgements especially in your favour (West) in this case report to say that some believe that the election wasn't fair. More than that you cannot report honourably.

Were there some sort of rigging on the day of the election? OR counting was wrong? Have facts on those before passing judgements.

Jaliya Epa from Colombo

SensibleAli   June 16th, 2009 8:54 pm ET

Twitter Revolution: Hala Gorani is right about the control by the regime.
Germany in WW II:
Sophie and Hans Scholl. two young German students, where hanged in Feb 1943 for spreading leaflets at Munich university. It was the caretaker who arranged their arrest. The control by the Nazis was ubiquitous.

The Scholl's White Rose resistance group had been sending letters all around Germany – that was the way in the 1940s. German defeat was foreseeable after Stalingrad, but Hitler kept on until the bitter end.

With cyber resistance the Scholl's would have stood a much better chance. The German people was isolated and had no means of communication. The world could have taken a different turn – even before Hitler.

Reza   June 16th, 2009 9:45 pm ET

Hi Dear,

I'm sending this from Iran. All communication ways like SMS, Mobile phones and even internet (in many cities) are shut down in Iran. We just hardly have Twitter and I think it plays an important roll in the revolution.

Kind Regards,

Mo   June 17th, 2009 3:54 am ET

It is not just in Tehran or as you put it "parts of of Iran" it is all over Iran. From Tehran to Karaj to Isfahan to Mashhad, Tabriz, Urmia, Ardabil, Gorgan, Sari, Bandar Abbas, Ahvaz, Yazd, Kermanshah, Shiraz and many more citeis. The government has shot down SMS which was the main channel to inform people. Now people are finding new ways to reach each other. They have crippled messengers as well. They are jamming satellite signals. They are doing whatever they can to suppress people. Even Ahmadinejad tried to steal Green symbol, which is Mousavi's symbolic colour.

ali   June 17th, 2009 7:03 am ET

I am one of the protesters of this regime, as you see on tv reports or other sources of information, the forces called basij militant are killing and assasinating the people in the streets just becouse of their beleifs and wanting freedom of speech. if there is no problem in the election, why the regime kill and ban the sources of information such as sattelite, internet, mobile phones and so on.
i think this election was a big lie to the iranian people whole around the world.
we never never accept this election.

Ali   June 17th, 2009 9:32 am ET

I want you to understand that they are killing people. People who don\'t have any thing to defend themselves. Dont you see that Basijies are killing people.

ali   June 17th, 2009 9:44 am ET

I THINK THE TERM TWIITTER REVELOUTION IS A JOURANALISTIC TITLE ; it may mislead the people the to think that the protest is limited to the Internet.moreover it doesn\'t show whole story. goverment run media also state that a small number of people, who are talented in using Internet, took part in the demonstration. yet i think this objection against cheating in election is so common

Rachel   June 17th, 2009 10:32 am ET

Hi Hala,

I have been watching CNN since this started (in part due to Chriatiane Amanpour\'s ecxcellent coverage but also due to you and others\' very good job) and wish to add this:

There has been a general malaise in Iran as young people\'s lives have become more and more restricted. I think a large part of the outpouring we see in the streets is to some degree the exploding pot which has been simmering for the past 4 to maybe even 6 years. I have heard of people suffering extreme despressions and I think finally something is taking place into which they can channel their energies.

Of course, it is also political: inflation is rampant and not only has the dichotomy between rich and poor been acerbated but also the one between classes, as the lower class had finally become enfranchised by Ahmedinejad and couldn\'t wait to stick it to the middle/upper classes. This makes it a fairly combustible mix as I am pretty sure that these people are not really willing to give up their new-found \"power\" to the very same people that have kind of looked down on them for so long.

Iran is a great country and the people are funny and intelligent and highly astute. It would really make me sad if a civil war broke out there, so Moussavi should maybe try to reach out already now in anticipation of the melee to come.


Ali   June 17th, 2009 10:41 am ET

Hala, it is indeed twitter revolution, but media revolution is needed. It\'s a fact that major media are truly silent to report the truth about current crimes in Iran against the protests (probably with an excuse that the foreign journalists are simply banned by the government).

It is not the problem of one country, but a dreadful violation of human rights. If this dictatorship continues, sooner of later we will witness similar actions in other countries too.

afshin   June 17th, 2009 3:30 pm ET

Hi Hala
At the moment 8 peole are killed in the protests but I think these protests can change the situation only if religious leadres support them, because they do have enough power to persuade Ayatollah Khamenei. Some of them like Ayatollah Montazei and Ayatollah Saanei have already supported them.
Twitter is blocked by Iranian government just like Facebook, Youtube, BBC...

Ben   June 17th, 2009 3:54 pm ET

Please continue to show the world what the Iranian government does to its young men and women for just wanting freedom! All these killings are wrong and unjustified! This is a brutal government, having no respect for the lives of its own people and the people outside the world....They will kill, torture and do anything they wish to any human being! Please gather support for these very young innocent Iranian men and women getting killed as we speak. Thank you!

tochukwu   June 17th, 2009 5:09 pm ET

struggling for your right is not a crime
i just want you guys to keep protesting for your right
i hope you guys will keep your eyes to the ground...come next election in might see a similar stuff

Gibel   June 17th, 2009 6:21 pm ET

Hi Hala,
I'm writing you from spain a keen viewer of Idesk ,
compliment hala i always happy when i saw you in the CNN congratulation of your work well done .
may God increases your strenght and protect you and all staff

Nimitz Benedicto   June 17th, 2009 7:00 pm ET

the Iranians are being pitted vs each other by forces happy to see the explosion/implosion breakup/downfall of Iran. Unite, not divide vs those people/group/countries who are fueling/goading you to fight each other. When you are shattered and weak, they do not have to hit your Iran with "pre-emptive strikes". They are subverting you to destroy yourselves.

Vic Benedicto   June 17th, 2009 7:11 pm ET

Iranians. there are unseen powerful forces behind your protests.they are using money,the US State Dept,Twitter,mass media (tv,newspapers,radio,etc) to provoke you to kill each bring down your country. Wake up.

Persia Man   June 18th, 2009 3:41 pm ET

Iran is censoring all aspects of media from spreading peoples expression and freedom. This is a dictatorship and should be stopped. People should not have to fight to have their votes cast fairly, people should not have to suffer because they wish to express themselves.

Whether it is Twitter, Facebook, or Youtube, this can help provide information of the protests to others around the world of what is really going on in Iran. Whilst Ahmadinjad is trying to persuade us that it's nothing and that Iran is 'stable' when clearly Iran is far from it under his control.

I have faith in those who protest and are fighting for what they believe is right.

Asian   June 19th, 2009 10:54 am ET

If one country's President is a direct and a courageous person who can take actions and talk against US and European Countries, that's the greatest leadership! When soemthing happens aganist that leadership and critisized that leadership by on FEW people, the US and the EU countries will act a whole drama and make it a BIG ISSUE! What does that prove? US and the EU Countries are so.........................scared of countryies like Iran, India, Pakistan, Russia, China and even Sri Lanka etc...

rostam   June 21st, 2009 7:29 pm ET

The world must be very careful now.
Islamic regime is going down but they will take many with them.
And if you think they will only take Iranians with them then you are wrong. They will kill people in Iraq and Afghanistan and all around the world. These two British hostages in Iraq are such. The forensics will tell us the time of deaths but it would not surprise me if this were a signal given by Khamenei to UK. He called UK for devil and 24 hours later you got the bodies on your doorsteps. And bombs in Iraq and rockets in Afghanistan.
So if you think you are immune and could just sit in front of your televisions and just watch you are wrong. This is not Greece 70 s or Chilli 76 this is more like Germany 39

freedom   June 23rd, 2009 2:25 pm ET

I hear voices against CNN and there are just desperate voices coming from the regime. It is totally unacceptable. It is totally rediculous calling CNN not honourable while the regime is blocking the news coming out of Iran. You have the right to judge CNN when first of all you recognize the right to freely report. If there were free reporting, we could hear millions being interviwed that are aainst this regime. So, please stop this shrade of name calling. How can a regime killing its own people on the streets while they have legitimate and peaceful demands call free reporting not honourable. As if people are naive or can not think on their own. At least be honourable and do not insult people's intelligance.
CNN's efforts are highly appreciated.

Parsa   June 23rd, 2009 7:36 pm ET

What you see, there are only killings on the streets where people have the chance to take video and send them...... they torchure and kill every day the captured boys and girls in prison. there are no video's to see about!......PLEASE HELP US

Parsa   June 24th, 2009 6:36 am ET

Dear Hala,
There ar rumors around in Iran that the regim is preparing for a "coup d'etat" with "Revolutionary gard" & "Bassijes".
Rumors that they plan to kill Mussavi and execute immediately the killer!
It seems a real plan, look at their hard attitude with foreign embassies and meda !
We need you, the free world more than ever in Iran now.
We started, lost lives and can't go on on our own if you don't help us.

freedom   June 28th, 2009 7:20 am ET

Hellodear Halla

I wa reading your note about twitter and I am very impressed that you really listen to your viewers and care about them and their views. This is not something we wintness much due to many factors such as shortnes of time or volume and pressure of the job you reporters have.
The point here that I was thinking about is, considering the limited channels of communication with inside iran, maybe it is a good point not to advertise widely how the news gets outside iran since then there would be soon put regime in a state of alert how to sabatoge the channels. those who have found ways to relay the news do their job. This widely explaining the ways people find to send messages even though shows others how to send messages limits the channels. I think people with come up with new ways of sending messages wich i think it would be a good idea to keep them in low profile the later the regime finds out about them the better for the people and international community.

send our thanks to all the staff at CNN.

freedom   June 28th, 2009 7:43 am ET

As I was sitting and thinking one thing struck me as very intersting. When you read Islamic literiture or listen to some speeches, They mostly start with IN THE NAME OF GOD THE MOST GRACIOUS AND MERCIFUL. Think about it this is a symbol of the god who people believe in by islamic definition. Now tell me where is the grace and mercifulness in seizing injured people from hospital beds under treatment. Even prisoners of war according to international treaties when in need of medical care they would be subject to treatment.
This government operating under the name of GOD is taking people savagely from hospital beds into arrest. I am just wondering in the name of which GOD they are operating.

Fariba   July 13th, 2009 3:36 am ET

Dear Hala
30 years iranian regim lie and cheat, especially this time. because this time too much people voted in order to reform in Iran.
the government killed and prisoned during 30 years in named of Islam .
We just want freedom, and this is obviously possible when this regim
is disappeared.
poor iranian people just because of sources of wealth and oil, most countries dont help to iranian people, they consider thier conservative policy.
please consider your humanity.

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