I try and follow the events in Iran over Twitter and linked news feeds, periodically, as I manage between other distractions. (I have developed a severe attention deficit, but I spend most of my time at the computer reading articles and social network updates these days.) I've been following ABC reporter Lara Setrakian on Twitter (@LaraABCNews), and this entry struck me:
They arrested a busload of people. There were many intelligence folks in the crowd.They'd point to a person and the basijis would arrestThere's been talk of basijis using paint guns to mark people present at protests. I wonder if this is related. At a glance, the statement reminds me of National Geographic's June 2009 "Riot Tact" article, which I quoted here. It's something I've been thinking about since government responses to the protests began; they should be following these standards for crowd control, not attacking people and creating escalation. It's clear that escalation isn't what they want, but they're still handling things very badly, as evidenced by this tweet just prior:
About 2000 of us walking around the circle, only shouting Allaho Akbar until they were forced to disperse us with tear and pepper gases#iranGiven that the government surely doesn't want severe violent escalation for a variety of reasons, it might be nice if governments such as those in Sweden and England, and organizations such as the University of Liverpool's School of Psychology — educational home of Dr. Clifford Stott, who has helped develop and implement these methods — would enlighten the police, the basijis, and the Imam's personal guard of this approach.