Sara Shourd, one of the three American hostages in Iran’s Evin prison was released yesterday, amidst the kind of drama that only our conservative Mullahs and illegitimate, unpopular government are capable of. With each faction desperate to exert some sort of supremacy over the other, while futilely attempting to paint a benevolent picture for the outside world.
Shourd along with Joshua Fattal and Shane Bauer were taken hostage near the border of Iran-Iraq more than a year ago on the pretext of trespassing into Iranian territories without permit. Although given the track record of this fascistic regime, it is not beyond reason to allow for the possibility of the three having been taken hostage well within the Iraqi Kurdistan province and brought to Iran to serve as the regime’s political card, a familiar tactic from them.
The release of Shourd wasn’t bereft of controversy either as first Ahmadinejad, on the eve of his trip to New York for the United Nations general assembly, and in a transparent attempt to paint a favorable picture of himself, suddenly announced “he” is effecting the release of Sara Shourd based on humanitarian grounds (Shourd has been having medical complications recently that raised the concerns of doctors which the regime wanted to avoid) coinciding with Eid Fetr at the end of Ramadan month. This grant of freedom was the exact thing Ahmadnejad, nearly a year earlier, professed to everyone in the world, including the parents of the three hikers, that he is not able to do and was not in his hands, rather the supposedly “independent” judiciary system of Iran!
Playing a card just before his visit was expected by many as Ahmadinejad as the individual and his government as a whole was under increasing pressure from within the country through ultra conservatives and Khamenei camp and without the country through international sanctions as well as several world wide campaigns on human rights violations, including Sakineh Mohamadi’s case. Hence the vast media release of this gesture. But not all the players have played their hands yet.
Unbeknownst to the hapless, illegitimate president, the Khamenei camp had different ideas and plans to ruin his party. Within hours of Ahmadinejad’s announcement, the judiciary branch released a statement negating the release. If there was any Ace card to be played, it was only fitting that the “supreme leader” should be the beneficiary of it. Hence, the judiciary statement, which followed by another statement the following day that pointed to Shourd’s release, however under certain conditions and a bail of $500,000. One can only imagine the kind of emotional roller coaster Sara, her family and all the well wishers went through, all within a few hours. This highlights the power struggle that has been building up as the chasm between the two power structures of the regime has been widening with alarming pace, with each side trying to score points over the other and trumping the rivals.
I am happy to see Sara Shourd was finally released yesterday and she boarded a plane to Oman on her way to the States. However, there is the matter of the other two hikers still in captivity. Fattal and Bauer are to remain as unplayed cards for either power factions in the regime, to be used when necessary! But I believe such cards have an expiry date too and the regime cannot simply hold onto them indefinitely and they will have to be released at some point. But I presume that release also will be accompanied with its corresponding charade and theatre. Perhaps in a face-saving manner in which the two are put on trial, the kind of show trials that serve only the propaganda machine of the regime and nothing beyond. And most probably they would get convicted to a year or 15 months of imprisonment, which coincidentally was already served during their captivity. And the two will be released with much fan-fare and hoopla in an attempt to squeeze all the regime can from the two cards that were losing their potency.