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IRGC Prepares For Large Cultural Maneuver In Tehran

By Nazanin Kamdar, Rooz Online

Forcefully Removing Physicians’ Ties to Alter Image of Tehran?

As more economists speak of the impossibility of bringing the new wave of inflation in Iran under control, Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) and the police are preparing themselves to confront potential social unrest in the future. The rising police and Guards interventions and confrontation with the public, on the pretext of enforcing the hijab rules and cultural aggression are examples of such interventions and confrontations.

Iran’s deputy chief of police General Ahmad-Reza Radan, the official who has been legally accused in the lawsuit related to the illegal Kahrizak prison scandal, has announced a new wave of police interventions to deal with hijabviolations. He specified that automobiles with “provocative” colors would be dealt with, officers would visit hospital to remove physicians’ ties and women who in companies and hospitals wore cosmetics would be arrested.

As reported by Shargh newspaper, the IRGC’s SarAllah base in Tehran which played the most active role in suppressing the 2009 demonstrations against the official results of the contested presidential elections that re-instated Ahmadinejad at the presidency, is preparing itself for a “large cultural maneuver” which according to the commander of the base would “alter the face of Tehran” and remove the “four threats that confront Tehran.” The commander added that the force awaited ayatollah Khamenei’s green light to launch the operations after which the IRGC’s “soft power” - as the he put it - would be put on display.

And as Tehran is being prepared for this “soft power” show of force, Radan also announced that the towns on the Caspian coastline in the north too are included in this operation.

In his announcement, which has been widely supported and praised by state-run media, Radan said, “We announce once again to those who do not know the specific rules of bad hijab that what the police has in mind are tight and body-hugging clothes, women’s short manteus (gowns) that only cover up to the knees, short-sleeved clothes, and head scarves that reveal hair on the sides of the head.” He continued, “Sometimes people think that it is ok for their hair to be covered on the sides even if it can be seen on one side. This is not the case and people whose hair is displayed will be warned. If they fail to correct the problem they will be taken to police stations and the violations will be put on their records.”

Radan also had two warnings for car owners. The first was over noise pollution. Sound equipment that bothered the public would be confiscated from vehicles, he said. The other issue was harassment complaints by women, which he said would not be tolerated by the force. “I order my police colleagues in greater Tehran to firmly confront street harassers,” he said.

The police chief said that the moral security plan against bad hijab, street harassers, hooligans, operators of satellite dishes and small drug traffickers would also be enforced along the towns and villages on the Caspian coastline.

Radan’s message was also intended for still another group of citizens. “I officially announce that the police will definitely confront those in private hospitals and medical groups where women wear cosmetics and men wear ties on a regular basis. The tie is a Western symbol,” he declared. According to him the police would be soon sending text messages “explaining bad hijab” issues to the public.

Even before Radan’s threats were widely publicized, the police have already been reported to have launched their operations and arrested people on the excuse of “harassing women.” One witness told Rooz that he saw a person was arrested because of his red colored car.

IRGC and Basij have plans to correct Tehran's political and cultural situation: General Jafari

And as public complains are raised about the operation in the comments sections of even government news sites, Shargh newspaper heralded the arrival of this “unprecedented” maneuver by the SarAllah IRGC base which would alter the face of the capital.

Shargh quoted Mohsen Kazemi, the commander of the SarAllah base as saying, “With the support of IRGC supreme commander Jaafari, and his initiative, a major event will take place in Tehran which will inshalla change the face of the city and we shall witness a positive improvement in the cultural domain.” He added that the initiative pursued four goals and 526 specific projects and actions. “We have decided to be active in 2012 through a soft war because the IRGC has a high capacity to be a deterrent force which exists in its combat units and the Basij. In Tehran, the Imam Ali Basij brigade has been well organized and in the near future a number of joint maneuvers (military exercises) will be held. The Ashoora brigade has also attained good organization. The fist display of force by Al-Zahra units was put on show at the 12 thousand amphitheater.”

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