Iran Election Social Media Update

Tuesday, February 23, 2016 – Esfand 4, 1394

As Election Day inches near, candidates continued to campaign this week across the country as Iranians prepare for parliamentary and Assembly of Experts elections slated for this Friday, February 26. Below is a round-up of Tuesday’s election-related cartoons, and interesting posts from social media.


#IranElections2016 Cartoons, Feb. 23, 2016…

طنز/ عفت مرعشی: هاشمی باید رأی اول خبرگان بشه، اگر نشد تقلب شده، اینبار دولت باید بریزه توی خیابون

In a satirical cartoon, Tasnim depicts Effat Marashi, the wife of Ayatollah Hashemi Rafsanjani, as she votes for her husband in Iran’s Assembly of Experts election (Tehran Province). Rafsanjani, is the head of Iran’s Expediency Council and heads the “People’s Experts,” a coalition list of moderate candidates vying for a seat in the Assembly of Experts. In the cartoon, Marashi is quoted as saying, “Hashemi must come first in votes for the Assembly of Experts, if he doesn’t, [they] cheated; and this time the administration should pour into the streets.”

A cartoon from reformist Etemaad illustrates a dove voting for peace at the ballot box.

کاندیدهای انگلیسی

In this cartoon, Tasnim pushes the idea that the British are supporting candidates that are sympathetic to Iran’s 2009 Green Movement.

This cartoon from Javan illustrates a single vote being deposited into a security safe, promoting the importance of voter fraud ahead of Friday’s vote.

توهمات اشرافی، برای کرسی های مجلس

A Fars artist suggests what deep-pocketed and “elitist” parliamentary candidates fantasize about, if they were to be elected into Iran’s tenth parliament.

بازار داغ وعده‌ها

In another Tasnim cartoon, the artist pokes fun at the many, and often times outlandish election promises and claims that are made in campaign ads. For instance, the campaign ad with the mustached man reads: “I’m handsome!”

A cartoon from reformist Shargh depicts an olive-branch carrying peace dove in the shape of a ballot box.

A cartoon from foreign-based Rooz Online, illustrates the head of the Principalist coalition candidate list, Gholamreza Haddad-Adel, as being so desperate for votes for his parliamentary candidates, that he enlisted the support of the kolah-e makhmali, or jahels; a throwback subculture of men who represented chivalry and symbolized manliness in pre-revolutionary Iran. Although these men hold a special place in Iranian nostalgia, they have traditionally been ridiculed in modern culture.

نه به دخالت روباه پیر

In another anti-British cartoon entitled, “Say no to the interfering old fox,” the Tasnim artist touches on a traditional anti-imperialist theme which for decades has portrayed the British as an sly old fox meddling in Iran’s domestic affairs. In this case, the old fox is BBC Persian news, as it tries to influence the dove (Iranian voter) to vote for its preferred candidate list.

براندازی؛ استحاله و حالا نفوذ

This Tasnim graphic accuses the West for conducting a 32-year-long psychological war against Iran. According to the graphic’s text, the Islamic Republic’s enemies first sought to “overthrow” the revolutionary government. When that failed, Iran’s enemies looked to “transform” the regime, which came in form of the “1388 sedition” (2009 Green Movement). The third, and current goal of Iran’s enemies, is to use people and institutions inside the country that can be “influenced” politically and economically; which alludes to the importance of Friday’s vote.


Iran Election Instagram Posts, Feb. 23, 2016…

An Instagram account associated with Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, posted a English-translated graphic chiding the BBC, accusing “British media” of interfering in Friday’s vote, just as they did over a half-century ago with their role in the 1953 coup.

Ahmad Khomeini, the 18-year-old great-grandson of the Islamic Republic’s founder, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, posted of photo of his father Hassan Khomeini, alongside Ayatollah Hashemi Rafsanjani, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, and President Hassan Rouhani, with the accompanying caption, “Hope is our investment…”

Former Iranian nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili posted a clip of a speech he made Tuesday at local mosque in Tehran. In the clip, he promotes the candidacy of three senior officials running in the Assembly of Experts election: head of the Guardian Council Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati, interim head of the Assembly of Experts Ayatollah Mohammed Yazdi, and spiritual leader of the hardline Steadfast Front, Ayatollah Mohammad Taghi Mesbah-Yazdi.

Looking to represent Khoy (West Azerbaijan Province), independent female parliamentary candidate Masoumeh Badalanizadeh, posts a couple of photos of her speaking with different groups of potential voters, trying to win their vote.

An Instagram user in Iran posted a picture of a battered but vigilant voter’s hand amidst a green backdrop, and an accompanying caption that reads: “We will remain, on February 26 (Election Day), February 27, February 28.” The actual caption of the post reads: “Hoping for better days…#IwillVote.”

A reformist-affiliated Instagram account posted a video message from University of Tehran Sociology professor Hamidreza Jalaeipour, who advises potential voters to vote for parliamentary candidates belonging to reformist lists, as well as Assembly of Experts candidates that belong to the moderate coalition list, headed by Ayatollah Hashemi Rafsanjani.

The same reformist-affiliated Instagram account posted a video message from Ebrahim Yazdi, Iran’s first foreign minister after the 1979 Revolution, and current secretary-general of the Freedom Movement of Iran. In the video clip, Yazdi also suggests that voters should vote for reformist-affiliated candidates.

Female reformist parliamentary candidate (Qazvin Province), Seyede Hamideh Zarabadi, posted a photo of her recent Taban magazine cover feature in which she is quoted as saying, “There shouldn’t be only one voice in the parliament.”


ICYMI — Iran Election Tweets from Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2016…

And here it is…your moment of zen…

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