2030 GMT: The Cleric's Challenge. Green Voice of Freedom summarises the Ramadan speech of Ayatollah Dastgheib: "The Supreme Leader is part of the Constitution, not above it."
1845 GMT: The Battle Within. Two more articles picking up on the growing challenge to President Ahmadinejad: Abbas Djavadi for Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and Mahan Abedin for Asia Times Online.
1440 GMT: We have posted a separate feature, following up our earlier updates, on what appears to be a Fars News effort (possibly instigated by the Revolutionary Guard) to discredit leading reformist Mostafa Tajzadeh, detained in Evin Prison, through a supposed "confession" that Mir Hossein Mousavi lost the 2009 election.
NEW Iran Special: Have Fars (& Revolutionary Guard) Faked a Reformist “Confession” on Election?
NEW Iran Video: “His Excellency” Ahmadinejad Interviewed by George Galloway (15 August)
NEW Iran Analysis: What Has Green Movement Achieved? (Sahimi)
Iran Document: Mohammad Khatami on Religion, the Islamic Revolution, and the Republic (15 August)
Iran’s Battle Within: Ahmadinejad Appeals to Supreme Leader (Rafiee)
1335 GMT: Karroubi Watch. Mehdi Karroubi, meeting a group of young reformists, has declared, that the opposition "movement is not limited to one person, medi,a or group". Criticising the deceitful and fraudulent remarks and actions of the government and the repression of the people, he advised his listeners to see beyond partisan lines and always stay loyal to their fundamental beliefs and values.
Karroubi concluded that victory would inevitably be achieved with patience and perseverance.
1105 GMT: Reports indicate that an Iranian F4 fighter jet has crashed in the south of the country near the nuclear power plant being established at Bushehr.
1055 GMT: The University Crisis. Fars News is claiming that Abdollah Jasbi, the head of Islamic Azad University, will soon be stepping down.
If true, the development would be a setback for former President Hashemi Rafsanjani, who is trying to maintain influence over Iran's largest university system, with 1.3 million students, as President Ahmadinejad tries to take control of it.
1020 GMT: The Tajzadeh Election "Confession". An EA source says that the claimed video on Fars News of a detained reformist "confessing", "We lost the elections", is not from Evin Prison and could be in connection to a previous Presidential election. The source also says the audio may have been manipulated, thus the need for subtitles to give the "correct" interpretation.
1005 GMT: Fars News Special "Mostafa Tajzadeh: "We lost the elections". Fars News is pushing a video that it claims is the secretly-filmed confession of senior reformist and former Deputy Minister of Interior Mostafa Tajzadeh, speaking to fellow detainees Abdullah Ramezanzadeh and Mohsen Safai-Farahani.
Tajzadeh allegedly says, "I have experience in handling elections, so I know what happened. It is possible than one or two million votes have been displaced,we would have gotten 14-15 million votes. Not 25. We have lost the elections."
We cannot guarantee authenticity of the video. We are carrying out checks and also monitoring any reaction.
0950 GMT: War Chatter. An EA correspondent notes a discussion on Voice of America of the provocative "analysis" by Jeffrey Goldberg of The Atlantic --- which we considered last week on EA --- projecting a likely Israeli airstrike on Iranian facilities.
0940 GMT: How to Handle the US Government and the Stoning Issue. Keyhan responds to US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's recent statement criticising the death sentences of Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, condemned for adultery, and three other prisoners:
Hillary Clinton, the wife of former US President Bill Clinton, still has to use her husband's name despite becoming Secretary of State. Taking advantage of the exploitative and perverse principle of freedom of choice which Hillary Clinton speaks about, Bill Clinton betrayed her and had a lengthy illicit relationship with his secretary Monica Lewinski which even in the promiscuous US society became a major scandal. Furthermore, Condoleezza Rice was notorious in the media for being promiscuous in her relationships.
0920 GMT: Rafsanjani Watch. An EA correspondent reports that the memoirs of former Hashemi Rafsanjani have been withdrawn from bookstands in Iran only a few weeks after they went on sale. (Could that be because of possible comparisons between the Iranian Government of the 1980s and the Iranian Government of today?)
In his introduction, Rafsanjani writes that his "hard-working staff" have copied all his diaries to CD ROM and stored them in a safe location. That's a message for Iran's security forces: if you raid the former President's offices, you won't get the original of his memoirs.
0855 GMT: Political Prisoner Watch. The International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran claims that the officials of Ward 350 of Evin Prison have cancelled the mosque privileges of prisoners during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
0845 GMT: The Hunger Strike. Advar News reports that three of the 17 political prisoners who have recently ended their hunger strike --- Abdollah Momeni, Bahman Ahmadi Amoui, and Keyvan Samimi --- are still in solitary confinement.
0825 GMT: Execution (Ashtiani) Watch. Following President Ahmadinejad's assurance that cases of death sentences by stoning were "insignificant" (see 0745 GMT), the Iranian Foreign Ministry has told other countries to stay out of the discussion over Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, the woman whose scheduled execution has received international attention: "Independent nations do not allow other countries to interfere in their judicial affairs....Western nations must not pressurise and hype it (the case) up....Judicial cases have precise procedures, especially when it concerns murder."
0745 GMT: We have just posted the video of the interview of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, addressed as "His Excellency", by former British MP and current Press TV host George Galloway. The two men share their agreement on Iran's nuclear programme, the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, and Palestine/Gaza before Galloway offers this hard-hitting challenge on "internal Iranian questions":
GALLOWAY: I have police protection in London from the Iranian opposition because of my support for your election campaign. (Galloway is referring to an incident this winter when he was heckled at a post-election meeting in the Houses of Parliament.) I mention this so you know where I'm coming from....
The events after the election were a kind of mini-political earthquake, a section of the population rejecting the results and a section of them openly attacking the Islamic system itself. Can I ask you, "What does the Green Movement mean to you?"
AHMADINEJAD: ....There are people in the Islamic Republic of Iran who continue to criticise and attack the President, and they are sure that nobody is going to harass them. They have peace of mind and they are comfortable. We really have free and democratic elections in this country, and people are the main element of elections, and people are also the executors of elections....
The other point is the conspiracy and plans of the United States and its allies. Before the elections, they had announced they would do everything possible to prevent the Government of Ahmadinejad to be re-elected....
At the end of the day, we see 14 million people have not voted for me. So it will be quite natural if you see number of demonstrators reach 14 million, but the number of the protestors was very insignificant. The people of Iran are very much united....
[The President then speaks of the opposition "within the system", describing Mir Hossein Mousavi, Mehdi Karroubi, and Mohammad Khatami but not naming them.]
GALLOWAY: Are they still inside the system?
AHMADINEJAD: Almost in the system. Of course, the people don't want them any longer. People have not voted for them. They have been successively defeated [during the Government's] two terms....
The post-election events was on the basis of a project made in the country and it was implemented inside the country among a limited number of people. The Islamic Republic of Iran did not intend to take a harsh attitude toward them....We have managed the situation with minimum cost....
GALLOWAY: Every so often an issue comes along which is seized upon by the enemies of Iran and magnified and it becomes a heavy problem. One such is the punishment scheduled originally against a woman convicted of adultery [Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani], the so-called stoning case.
I see that President Lula from Brazil has asked Iran if he can take this woman into exile there to solve this problem. Can Iran agree to this?
AHMADINEJAD: The number of such people [sentenced to death by stoning] is very, very insignficant. I talked to a judge at the end of the day, and judges are independent. But I talked to the head of the judiciary and the judiciary does not also agree with such a thing....I think there is no need to create some trouble for President Lula to take her to Brazil. We are keen to export our technology to Brazil....I think the problem is so limited.
0655 GMT: We begin this morning with Muhammad Sahimi's analysis, "What Has the Green Movement Achieved?"
Political Prisoner Watch
Majid Pashai, a student activist, has been given a two-year prison sentence.
Neither the Green Movement nor political prisoners is getting a look in, however, with most US-based analysts. The Atlantic magazine --- motives to be considered in 25 words or less --- has re-made itself as Command Central for discussion of an Israeli strike on Tehran.
How far can one run with such chatter? Well, former Bush Administration official John Bolton used the news that Russia will supply uranium fuel rods to Iran's first nuclear power plant at Bushehr to claim that Israel has until 21 August to attack Iran's nuclear facilities: "Once the rods are in the reactor an attack on the reactor risks spreading radiation in the air, and perhaps into the water of the Persian Gulf."
Bolton made the claim even though Bushehr has no connnection to uranium enrichment, let alone any Iranian military nuclear programme.