Iran relations chapter 393487786: the reporter/spy

So this reporter who at one point worked for the BBC is on the verge of getting completely fucked by Iran’s Special Furriner edition of due process. Two questions: is this part of a broader gambit for leverage in negotiations? Will Iran employ the obvious rejoinder (pronounced “Guantanamo” in Farsi)?

Extra credit: does an Iranian left hand, metaphorically speaking, know what the right hand is up to?

Can someone who doesn’t have access to sensitive information be a spy? If so, what would that mean?

Or is this just a bizarre slap in the face like most American news outlets are portraying it?

From what I’ve read, this. The Iranian judiciary is especially hardline and is using this to sandbag the moderates that want to reduce the level of confrontation with the West.

She hasn’t been a ‘bbc reporter’ since 2003. She’s always been freelance contractor… And she’s also worked for NPR and FOX News.

We will just have to hope she doesn’t ‘commit suicide’ like other women (who showed no signs of being suicidal) have done, in Iranian custody.

Roxana Saberi, 31, who had reported for the BBC and National Public Radio, faced espionage charges during a trial Monday before Iran’s Revolutionary Court.

That’s what I went with.

Noted moderate Mahmoud Ahmadinejad intervenes on her behalf in the case.

It raises suspicions over whether the case has been hijacked by hardliners within the Iranian government, eager to sabotage any reconciliation, the BBC’s Jon Leyne reports from Tehran.

He says it is not clear if the Iranian president is suggesting due legal process has not been followed, or if he is generally emphasising the importance of fairness in such sensitive cases.

Iranian politics is Byzantine even for the region.

But Istanbul was Constantinople!

Even old New York was once New Amsterdam.

why they changed it?

I can’t say

King James II liked it better that way.

Why did Persepolis get the works?
That’s nobody’s business but King Xerxes.

That’s in Turkey, not Persia.

Byzantine Schmyzantine

I’m still gathering all my paperwork and having the travel agency our college uses figure out how much it’ll cost to get me to Qazvin (165km NW of Tehran) in October for a conference. I’m supposed to chair a panel there and give a paper, but the visas, air travel, the need to wire funds to the conference via a Swiss bank (they don’t seem to be on the grid vis a vis credit cards or anything else in Iran), and all of that are making me wonder if it’ll actually happen. For instance, I’m not sure, exactly, how I’ll get from Tehran to Qazvin–I’m betting hitchhiking is out.

My advisor is going to a conference in Iran sometime in the near future. If I had known about it earlier I probably would have applied for funding to go, if nothing else it has to be a once in a lifetime type experience.