American Sniper is a movie about violence and the deep effect it leaves on people’s soul. It’s about wounded individuals. I think its anti-war message has gone unnoticed for two main reasons: firstly, the movie is very sympathetic towards Chris Kyle, picturing him as the product and the victim of a violent culture, and secondly, it’s very subtle in its imagery and how it conveys its message. But watching the movie carefully will reveal that it is deeply anti-war. Read more

I didn’t become an atheist because I wanted to sin, but the ability to sin is one of the reasons I’m glad I became one. As an atheist you have an opportunity to free yourself from the nonsensical and reactionary morality of the Jewish religion and its two illegitimate children without feeling unnecessary guilt over natural and honorable human faculties. Read more

There’s a new senator competing for the crown of the vilest anti-Iran voice in the senate, the freshman Tom Cotton, who not only seems hell-bent on sabotaging diplomacy but he is being extra childish, petty, and ignorant about it. In addition to that controversial letter, he has insulted Iran’s Foreign Minister on Twitter, said there are no moderates in Iran, and has asked Iran to disarm nuclear weapons it doesn’t have. Read more

Today Iran’s Assembly of Experts (in charge of choosing and monitoring the Supreme Leader) had its internal election and the worst case scenario came true: Mohammad Yazdi, a radical conservative and Islamist extremist, was elected as the Chairman, a defeat for the reformists and an indication that the higher echelons of the regime are still controlled by radical conservatives – not traditional establishment conservatives, not moderate conservatives, but radical extremist conservatives. Read more

Reading through Netanyahu’s speech, we see that he lies plentifully and shamelessly about Iran and relies on the absolute ignorance of his audience, and reveals a strong hatred of Iranian people, and advocates policies that would be disastrous to Iran and the region. This speech reveals Netanyahu to be a mindless warmonger and a reactionary radical right-winger. Read more

Happy birthday to this blog! One year old! Read more

Without community, religion would be another ideology among other ideologies, forced to compete in the so-called “marketplace of ideas” without the near monopoly it currently holds, and it would have no repressive tools to enforce its hierarchy of first rate and second rate citizens or to ostracize dissidents. Community, far from being religion’s greatest merit or its strength, is precisely why hegemonic religions are currently so harmful and need to be fought. Read more

From defending Darwin from the accusation of racism and proving that French laws are hypocritical, from Tunisia’s Essebsi to Saudi Arabia’s Salman, from elections in Nigeria to Khamenei, here is the newest link round-up from On the Margin of Error. Read more

Today it has been four years since Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi, the leaders of the Green Movement which sparked after the fraudulent elections of 2009, and Zahra Rahnavard, prominent reformist and feminist and Mousavi’s wife, were put under house arrest. This is extremely important for Iran’s present and future. In this post (The House Arrest of Mousavi, Karroubi, and Rahnavard Can Determine the Future of Rouhani’s Administration) I have explained the history of these three people, and their… Read more

The University of Massachusetts, in Amherst, has announced that it will not accept Iranians in certain academic programs and they should not apply. This decision was made because the sanctions caused many Iranians to be denied VISA after their acceptance. For long Iranian reformists have argued that these sanctions harm the people while the western governments were trying to sell to us this idea of “smart sanctions” that harm the regime and not the people, but this decision finally brings the true venomous nature of these sanctions to light. Read more

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