Smearing Montazeri

Yesterday we ran a video showing Iranians booing a message from Khamenei (re-posted above). Juan Cole has the details of its contents:

[Khamenei] accused the grand ayatollah of having been tested by God and of failing the test, but in which Khamenei went on to pray for divine forgiveness for his departed foe. The language of failing the test refers in fundamentalist religion to the assertion of individual ego and refusal to fall quiet when one does not get one's way. Khamenei is saying that Montazeri should have remained quiet about the 1988 massacres of dissidents, and that his standing up for human rights was a sign of human frailty and overpowering ego, which had the potential to undermine the Islamic Republic. Cult-like ideologies always attempt to silence dissidents and to paint dissidence as pure individual selfishness that leads to public turmoil.

The USG Open Source Center translated Khamenei's statement:

In the name of [G]od who is wise and merciful. We are informed that the illustrious scholar Mr Hajj Sheykh Hoseyn-Ali Montazeri has bid Farewell to this mortal coil and has hastened to the afterlife. He was an eminent scholar and an illustrious thinker and many students benefited from him. Much of his life was spent in the service of Late Imam (Khomeyni); he engaged in many jihads and endured much scorn in these endeavors. Towards the end of the Imam's life, (he failed) a difficult and momentous test. I beg almighty god envelope him his mercy and love and to absolve him by accepting the hardships (he) endured in this world as his penance. I his send condolences to his honorable wife and children and I pray for divine mercy and absolution for him.

Mojtaba Zolnour, a cleric and Khamenei's representative to the Revolutionary Guards, also tries to besmirch Montazeri.