The Iranian protest movement now has a symbol and a face: Neda.
Neda was an Iranian woman who was shot dead by Basij militia on Saturday during a protest of thousands against the Iranian presidential election results that declared Mahmoud Ahmadinejad president. Her death was captured on video by bystanders and uploaded to the internet. She died with her eyes wide open, and her last moments transcended citizen media to mainstream media, reaching millions of people.
A website has been dedicated to Neda, named We are all Neda. A quote on the homepage says, “We did not throw rocks at them, we cried ‘we want freedom'. They shot us.” Both Iranians and non-Iranians are leaving comments in memory of Neda on the site. So far, there are nearly 3,500 and the numbers are growing rapidly.
Mahyar says: “I wish my eyes could have learned from yours to be open bravely!!!”
Reza says: “Your open eyes taught me a lesson: ‘Don’t close your eyes to injustice'”
Mojtaba says: “Neda will never die, everyone of us could one day be a Neda”
Vida says: “Your light is shining the way towards freedom. Thank you.”
Iranian blogger Andisheh writes that Iranian national television are trying to blame ‘anti-revolutionaries’ for killing Neda. The blogger adds that if anybody had any doubts that Iranian television lies, these doubts can now be put to rest.
Here is a video film on Neda and the Iranian protest movement (Warning: some images are very graphic)
In a very short time, Neda's death became an international news story and people responded in different ways to show their sympathy.
Here is a song for Neda from an American singer on YouTube, Johnny Maudlin (Johnny99) (Persian subtitles were added by another user):
… and another by traveling American musician, Roothub:
Blogger Asad Ali Mohamadi, writes [fa] that his neighbours in Copenhagen, Denmark, are asking him about Neda, and that as soon as you turn on the television and internet you see news about Iran and Neda. “All talk about my Iran, our Iran. All talk about my Neda, our Neda,” he says.
Cecilia Morales tweeted, “We were not born to be slaves. We are human beings, God Bless you Neda, God Bless the Iranian people who want to live in freedom.”
Atefeh Walters tweeted, “I will fight for my country always!! I will never forget Neda!!”
Zannevesht, a blogger and journalist refers [fa] in her blog to Neda's death and says courageous Iranian women and girls have been present in this protest movement.
There were candlelight vigils for Neda in many cities around the world.
From New York: