“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Iranian Mosque Blows Up During Service. Not a Bomb.

Watching from above.

Just a bad day for the religion of peace. Media reports says blast was caused by live munitions, not bombs, still ten people killed and 160 wounded, Iran's state-run television reports the explosion happened in the southern Iranian city of Shiraz during Saturday services.

Don't you just hate it when you go to church and someone mishandles the munitions and the place blows up? God that annoys me. I suppose that I should be more empathetic. These things can happen when you are celebrating "Sacred defense". Clearly this is not just an Islamic thing. I used to go to this excellent local deli that would be filled with Jews after Temple and they got very roudy and loud over bagels. So these things do happen.

The news report says that the mosque was filled with 800 young men and they were listening to something spiritually uplifting like "death to the Bahai and Wahabi" and the next thing you know ten of the flock is dead and 160 are gone to the hospital. I do recall an Amish picnic where some potato salad was off...


Deadly blast in Iran caused by munitions

(CNN) --
An explosion in a southern Iranian mosque that killed 10 people and wounded 160 after evening prayers Saturday night was caused by negligent handling of live munitions, not a bomb as first suspected, Iranian media reported.

The blast and subsequent fire occurred about 6 p.m. Saturday in the men's section of a mosque in the city of Shiraz, Iran's Fars news agency reported.

Fars initially reported the explosion was caused by a home-made bomb.

Provincial Police Commander Ali Moaeyri later told Fars it "was not sabotage."

"Some live munitions may have been left behind at that location which could have been the cause of the explosion," Moaeyri said.

The police commander said the munitions were apparently left behind after a "Sacred Defense" exhibition was held at the mosque, which also serves as a cultural center.

Local militia groups -- known as Basij -- often use the mosques for meeting places.

Iran's official news agency, IRNA, put the number of casualties at 10 dead and 160 wounded. Survivors were being treated at 12 hospitals, IRNA reported.

Fars estimated 800 people, mostly young, were gathered at the mosque Saturday evening to hear a cleric's sermon denouncing Bahai and Wahabi faiths -- both of which are considered heresies by some Shiites.

Bombings are unusual in Iran, thought the predominantly Shiite Muslim country has endured sporadic attacks in recent years.

The last major bombing occurred in February 2007, when a car bomb blew up near a bus carrying members of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Corps, leaving a dozen dead and injuring dozens more in southeastern Iran.

Shiraz -- a historical city of more than 1 million people -- is well known for being home to many scholars, artists, poets and local craftsmanship of rugs and metalwork. The tourist city is about 400 miles south of Tehran, the capital.


  1. Barack should have dropped in here for guidance.

  2. That reminds me of the time the church blew up, right at service end. Pastor Thunderson was at the point in the Benediction where he says
    "And Peace be with you." and then the congregation says, all together,
    "And also with you."

    Just when he was going to say his words, Mabel, down in the kitchen, had gone into the office to answer the phone, which was ringing. When it rings like that, it always interfers with the microphone upstairs, which is why the office phone is usually unplugged during services. When she answers, Pastors' mike went off. Well, he was tapping the mike on the altar, and fiddling with the switch, when it comes back on, Mabel having hung up, and he is saying, "There's something wrong with this mike."
    Hearing this, the congregation chimes in, like trained monkeys, "And also with you."

    Just then there's this humongous explosion down in the kitchen, cause Mabel had turned the gas oven on, but forgot to light it, when she went to the office. The gas had built up quick, and ignited from the candles in Friendship Hall.

    kabooom blew a big hole in the sanctuary just where the organ is, luckily Ollie Olesen, the organ player, being done for the day, had gone to take a piss. There was organ parts all over the church. Everybody headed for the doors, me too, but I lost a boot on the way out, stuck under the pew in front of me, cause I'd stretched my legs way out under there.

    Nobody that was in that church that day ever forgot that episode. One time though, I was asking Oscar Martin, "Oscar, you remember when the church blew up?" and he says, "You know, I'd forgotten that, but now you remind me, I do. I was laid up that Sunday. I heard the boom all the way across town."

  3. Deuce:
    Munitions? But this is the RoP.

    That is funny stuff...