Summoning has consequences

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Summoning has consequences

Summoning has consequences.

Summoning has consequences. After Iran’s recent attack on Israel, different criticisms and opinions were presented in the media regarding the nature of the attack, its effects, and the possible future decisions of the two conflicting parties. Few domestic analysts or media outlets, however, pointed out any flaws in the nature of this attack. It was the Islamic Republic retaliating to Israel’s attack on Iran’s consulate in Damascus with a recent defensive and deterrent action, which was not contrary to international standards.

However, some journalists and media outlets tried to examine the aftermath of the attack from various perspectives and delve into the secondary aspects of the recent attack, which led to such criticisms and opinions facing legal repercussions. Clearly, the Tehran Prosecutor’s Office has pressed charges against Abbas Abdi, a journalist from the Etemad newspaper, for what has been labeled as combating disruptors of social security. This legal action followed a note with the dangerous title of responding or not responding.

This note was published on the 20th of Farvardin and Iran’s attack on Israel was in the final hours of the 25th day. Abbas Abdi wrote this note when it had been sent to the Etemad newspaper for printing by fate and the attack had not yet begun, so there was no malice involved. In terms of content, he tried to examine the pros and cons of the decision to attack or not.

The announcement of a criminal case against Hossein Dehbashi also took place. He was targeted for the tweets he had posted, referring to the horrors of war. He had also written that retaliating against Israel’s attack on the consulate was inevitable and he condemned those who support Israel. The prosecutor has also accused him of combating those who disrupt the mental security of society.

The same title has been repeated for Yashar Soltani, a media activist, due to what he had written about the increase in exchange rate on the Eskan News Telegram channel. Previously, the same title was used against Jahan Sanat newspaper and one of its journalists had been accused of a crime. After these accusations, many media activists expressed concern about this approach of dealing with media people and raised an important point: why, in a time when the domestic space more than ever needs unity, legal actions are expanding due to some analysis and reiteration of personal views, and whether the result of these actions does not lead to the opposite of unity.

Abbas Abdi wrote in a recent tweet that continuing these recent accusations would lead to ineffectiveness and a decrease in the credibility of the writings in defense of Iran or in criticizing Israel. An independent writer will refrain from writing about this to prevent the destruction of the community’s mental security. Abdi’s words refer to the result of recent confrontations, and Ahmad Zeidabadi, a journalist, also wrote in his Telegram channel in the same context that apparently the era of tolerating a superficial level of freedom of speech by the government is coming to an end after the recent missile operation.

Such incidents will mostly harm the government, and I hope it prompts a reconsideration with a new policy where many writers, journalists, and media outlets who try to express their opposing or critical views within acceptable government frameworks will be forced into silence, quietness, or face persecution and imprisonment. Political activist Hossein Nooraninejad also wrote that those who have been accused of crimes recently have been in agreement with them.

He also mentioned that they want critics to have the right to speak. From the collective opinions of media activists regarding the judicial actions, it can be inferred that they are all speaking from the same perspective. In the current situation where the people of Iran condemn the actions of the Israeli regime and, of course, there is a need for more solidarity internally, firstly, one should listen to the critics’ opinions and secondly, try to accommodate them if possible. Otherwise, instead of universal unity, a wave of pessimism will spread.

Not all issues can be resolved through the court.

Abbas Abdi, a journalist and political analyst, is one of the individuals for whom a crime has been announced by a prosecutor. In his assessment of this decision, he told the public that he could have spoken more comfortably if it wasn’t a personal issue. I believe there is no problem with filing complaints against journalists and any other person. A journalist must be ready to be held accountable for their actions, provided that the investigating bodies maintain their impartiality and demonstrate it in practice.

The impartiality of institutions enhances their credibility in the eyes of society and the trust in their handling of these issues. I think they showed excessive sensitivity on this specific matter and rushed. They should speak based on legal criteria, and issues like disturbing the mental security of society are not legal indicators. Making general and vague criminal announcements does not help the already precarious situation of the country’s media. In any case, my interpretation is that nothing significant has happened. This announced crime will be addressed and naturally made public for people and other colleagues to be informed of the details.

He continued by emphasizing the importance of learning how to behave towards others, including the general public, in reacting to issues. He pointed out that not all issues can be resolved through the court; some require dialogue. He expressed doubt about the purpose of announcing the crime but believed that prohibiting and restricting writing would not lead to desired results. Independent media outlets, like official ones, will lose credibility, even though individuals may make mistakes in their speech or writing, which is natural in the realm of public discourse. However, the way these instances are addressed is crucial.

It yields the opposite result.

Sa’id Shirazi, a reformist political activist, responded to the prosecutor’s decision by saying that in the current situation, the dimensions of Iran’s attack on Israel can be examined from various angles, including political, military, and security aspects. However, this attack is unique and unprecedented on the international stage, which is why it has attracted reactions from global powers.

This decision is also very important internally, and undoubtedly individuals who have made such an important decision, in addition to accepting its potential consequences and having high self-confidence, also possess a level of tolerance. Therefore, if individuals within the country are concerned about this decision and warn about its consequences, and even have analyses contrary to the decision-makers’ opinions, the decision-makers’ response to these criticisms should be accompanied by more flexibility.

A member of the Central Council of the Union of the Nation Party continued by stating that an article, news, or even an opinion in the virtual space with the intention of causing concern, along with criticism or even with the aim of discrediting, warrants reflection, especially if the criticism comes from writers, thinkers, and journalists. Therefore, considering the self-confidence in the decision, the approach to dealing with these criticisms should be different from the past.

In response to the question of whether this decision by the prosecutor’s office implies further restriction of freedom of expression in the media, it is emphasized that the individuals for whom cases have been filed are influential and well-known figures. Assuming that the news published by these individuals may not be sufficiently accurate, is it a correct approach to always file cases against them without a doubt? Undoubtedly, the main and important solution is to engage in dialogue with those who have published this news. This method is actually a violation of freedom of expression and will definitely have the opposite result, just like in the past years.

This political activist emphasized the necessity of paying more attention to solidarity and greater cohesion in the current situation. He stated that the National Security Council has held sessions with the media to clarify the situation for the media. This action of holding sessions with the media for dialogue and negotiation is commendable and will have desirable outcomes. I even suggest that these sessions with the media should also have persuasive purposes. The purpose of mentioning these sessions is to convey that clamping down on the media and media personnel is not the right approach.

According to fate, criticism should come from individuals, especially in significant decisions such as attacking Israel. If there is no critic, a symbolic and theatrical space of criticism would be created to announce that this decision has been made and implemented despite criticisms. Initiating an investigation might be a measure to control the situation, but it will have negative consequences in the future.

Care must be taken in expressing opinions.

Naser Eimani, an activist of conservative media, defended the prosecutor’s action regarding summoning some media figures. He said, ‘I do not enter into the details on this matter. In my opinion, the country was in special circumstances due to the military operation. Therefore, the owners of platforms and media should be careful about specific national interests in these conditions. If this caution is not observed and is interpreted as intentionally disturbing public opinion, their words or writings will face consequences.’

The country was on the verge of an enemy attack, and economic concerns were increasing. In such circumstances, if someone or some people contribute to disturbing public thoughts, their actions should be responded to oppositely. These analyses do not create any problems in normal conditions.

He added that when public opinion is anxious and people are concerned about which direction the economy is heading or how the enemy will retaliate to military operations, caution must be taken as any statement can contribute to public unrest. In certain circumstances, some deliberately or inadvertently do this. Israel did not allow any news to be published about the dimensions of Iran’s military operations, the number of wounded and killed, the locations hit, and the casualties in their media after the operation, as their country is in a special situation.

The conservative political analyst responded to the question of whether only one line of thought should be followed in special circumstances, saying that some of our friends in the government and system-critical camp had formally stated before this operation that military operations were not appropriate for the region in these conditions. No one confronted them for their opinion. However, in situations where military operations have been carried out and there are concerns about economic issues or attacks on the country, if someone reports price increases or speculates that the country will be bombed in a few hours, it is in the line of freedom of speech. It means that not everyone should follow one line of thought.

In response to the question of why officials in these inefficient conditions attribute their failures to the enemy, I emphasize that I do not defend the government and the wrong performance of officials. It is undeniable that it is not acceptable for the people for officials to cover their weaknesses with the enemy instead of explaining their performance. The point is that high-ranking officials of the country have decided to carry out a military operation.

I think the general public also had this desire because we have been patient for years in the face of internal and external assassinations. But it reached a point where the Iranian consulate in Syria was attacked. If Iran did not respond to this act, the national pride of the people would be damaged.

In these special circumstances, everyone should contribute to the tranquility of society for a short period. Media professionals may criticize the core issue and not see the military solution as correct, but in all countries, in special circumstances, those who have a platform and a pen know that issues that go against national interests and the people should not be raised. No one opposes announcing the price of the dollar and essential goods. Have the media not written enough that the price of the dollar has increased due to economic mistakes of officials? Does anyone say not to raise these issues?

In special and semi-war conditions, more attention must be paid to news reporting. During that particular time, if it is announced that the prices of goods or currency have increased due to these operations, it is a problem. Even several days after the operation, stating that the military operation has caused an increase in the price of currency is also not acceptable.


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