Blogger Arrested for Writing about Dogs in Ahmadinejad’s Guard

Persian blogger Reza Valizadeh (??? ??? ????) was arrested for his report about expensive German dogs being used in Ahmadinejad's guard team.

On November 16th he wrote about the four dogs which are recently added to Ahmadinejad’s security team, after they were purchased form Germany for $150,000 each [Persian]. Read the complete translation of his post at Expensive German Dogs for Ahmadinejad. Also read an independent report in Guardian, probably based on Reza's post.

His post was an indicator that Ahmadinejad's repeated claims of "living a simple life" are more of a propaganda issue than anything else. Reza's post irritated the state to the extent that the state-run news agency Fars News talked to "a person in the security teams" who "emphasized that Dogs are used all over the world for security purposes" [Persian]. While dismissing Reza's report about the price paid for the dogs, the official admitted that Dogs are of indeed of a German breed, but that "they are trained by Iranians". The official then went on by saying, "The recent propaganda about the dogs is a psycho-war, geared towards weakening the security teams". Answering to Reza's question about the consideration of dogs as filthy animals in Islam, the official stated, "There are fatwas that using trained Dogs for security purposes is not against the Sharia".

Fars's report was only preparation for the next move, which was arresting Reza on charges laid by President's Office. As a result, Valizadeh is given the chance to be released on a $50,000 bail. His charges include acting against the national security as well as disruption of public opinion [Persian]. Valizadeh is the founder of the leading feed aggregator Baznegar [Persian].

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About Arash Kamangir

Arash Kamangir is an Iranian graduate student. He relocated to Canada in September 2005. Since October 2004 Arash, has maintained his blog "Kamangir" which talks about Iran, Islam, the Islamic Republic of Iran and their interdependence as well as their differences. His work can be summarized as trying to show the diversity in Iran, through translating posts from Persian blogs. Akram Mahdavi waiting for her execution and a "Discount" from a hosting company - The Iranian Connection

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