Guest post by Tori and Kamran (cross-posted from View from Outside Iran.)
Those saying that Khamenei’s sermon Friday was a conciliatory one and a call for calm are living in a dream world. The fact that Ayatollah Khamanei called the millions of people who came to the streets in the past few days “agents of the West” and called the election fair and historic is shocking and divisive, but expected.
His unwavering support for Ahmadinejad and the unwillingness to investigate the vote has made it impossible for any compromise to be reached.
This speech was absolutely meant to terrify the Iranian people off the streets and back into their homes. He has now stated that any protest is illegal and that any violence will be the responsibility of the opposition.
His calls for using legal systems for protesting the election results are meaningless when those laws have already been circumvented to declare Ahmadinejad the winner. Saying that Iran is a great democracy is also meaningless when any protest is illegal and lethal force is used to crack down on demonstrators.