A reader writes:
Mir-Hossein Mousavi's explicit statement that he was willing to die along side other Green activists is a big deal.
Compare it to a similar historic statement in early 1960s when Mehdi Bazargan, Iran's first prime minister after the Iranian Revolution of 1979, told the Shah's military court: "We are the last people who will speak with you with words and encourage you to reform" - meaning that if you follow through the path of closing all doors to peaceful opposition and reform, the new generation will use other means to bring change: violence, revolution etc.
Mousavi's letter pretty much does the same. He propose that the leadership take 5 steps to avoid a catastrophe: restore freedom of press, release all prisoners, pass a law that guarantees fair and free elections, allows the opposition the right of peaceful protest as it's granted in the constitution and for the supreme leader to stop supporting the Ahamdi Nejad government so it's held accountable for its massive failures. He says this is the only way the country survives this turmoil. He provides the leader one last chance to undo the damage and return to civility.
But if they don't, which is likely the case, he has resolved any doubt that he is in this till the end and will not sell out even when his own nephew is killed. He also reminded the Greens of the importance of avoiding violence as that goes against what this movement is about. He also responded to the State TV's non-stop propaganda that the Greens are bunch of violent kids working for the West. He refers to the picture above and says: "If the state TV had a shred of honesty and sanity left in its leadership, it would air the images of those brave souls that despite being beat up by police and Basij, they still see them as their own brothers [who are also a victim of this situation] and try to protect them from being seriously harmed."His message was loud and clear: We are still reformists, we want to bring change peacefully, we despise violence, the leader must understand that if he destroys this one last bridge behind him, then we are headed towards a collision that we did all we could to avoid.
This is a man that cares deeply for Iran's well being more than he does for his own political future.