Iran's Green Revolution

13 Jun 2009

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Iran's presidential hopeful, Mir Hossein Mousavi, has "green power" as well as "girl power" behind him and a serious shot at winning what is turning out to be the most important election in the 30-year history of Iran's Islamic revolution.

Mousavi is challenging current Iranian President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Mousavi is an architect, an abstract painter, a former newspaper editor and has been described as "a very good manager." 

"Tehran rocks!" says Pepe Escobar in this clip while describing the fact that 23 million Iranians are internet surfers. This comprises 30% of the population in a very young country where where 60% of Iranians are under the age of 30.

Iran's green revolution has been driven by a very young and tech savvy grassroots base, which includes urban, rural, rich and poor.

According to Escobar, "Mousavi has 'girl power'. They are young. They are educated. They love their make-up and they make the clerics tremble with fear. They are branded as evil feminists."

Their role model is Mousavi's 61 year old wife Zarah Rahnavard. A political scientist and sculptor. She apparently had to tell the world's media that she is not Iran's Michelle Obama.

While his support from Iran's reformist base is strong, Escobar cautions "Mousavi is not a super reformist. He is a pragmatic, moderate conservative."

What is the colour green all about in this election?

It has little to do with the environment, as some may have assumed. The colour green became associated with Mousavi when candidates drew coloured balls from a random ball machine to decide which order they would appear in during a television programme. Mousavi drew green, while Ahmedinejad drew red. Coincidentally, green is the colour of Islam.

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