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June 18th, 2009
08:30 AM ET

Iran & the Media's Coverage

What do you think of the coverage of the Iranian election and election aftermath? Post your thoughts below.

Filed under: Don Lemon • Heidi Collins
soundoff (40 Responses)
  1. The Separation Of Religion & Secularism Is Absolutely Necessary In Iran?


    Iranians at the end of this struggle will have to recognize and come to terms with the following facts:

    How much longer will Iranians tolerate the involvement of the Ayatollah in Politics, Political Representatives, and Governance?


    June 18, 2009 at 9:06 am |
  2. Charlie Erickson

    I'm still trying to figure out how around 50 million ballots, can be manually counted in approx. 24 hours.

    It's amazing the difference in technology, that 30 years makes. Desktop and portable computers, the internet, cell phones, and social websites, turn localized occurrances into worldwide media events, even without the presence of the mainstream media, with all of its advanced equipment and its reporters.

    The world is getting a first hand look at theocracy pretending to be even a quasi Democracy. When "the few" rule with absolute authority, this is what happens.


    June 18, 2009 at 9:20 am |
  3. David Temple

    It would be a tremendous help to your coverage and your mission to inform if CNN's anchors and special guests were at least minimally conversant about Iranian governance. That is the Mullahs, their roles, the relationship with the office of President. It would provide a context for the viewer against which to assess the facts or images being reported.

    June 18, 2009 at 9:35 am |
  4. Larry

    I think we should stay out of this election process. They tend to do what they want. I'm tired of hearing about it. We have more important matters here at home that are not being tended to. It seems we're putting more urgency on Iran than our own backyard. There is plenty of issues in our Country to keep us occuppied. We did not elect our officials to go to Washington to worry about third world countries. We have spent too much time in those areas without looking at issues here.

    June 18, 2009 at 9:39 am |
  5. Steph

    CNN is outclassing all other news organizations by talking about the important things and keeping the low level entertainment news (Palin/Letterman, Billy Joel divorcing) to the bottom of the screen. Well done CNN!!

    June 18, 2009 at 9:41 am |
  6. Terrance

    I think it's wonderful having a global perspective on the world. I think that the attempt to black-out media coverage is an obvious sign of inordinate governmental control. However, it worries me seeing this covered all day in America. There is so much going on here: crime, poverty, and civil rights deprivation. And it is no secret that media played a part in making the Iraq war congenial to the American people post 911. I think we were so drugged by the constant coverage which in effect caused our passive acceptance to whatever the Bush administration wanted to do. Again, the Iranian people need to be heard. I just hope that media efforts won't be instrumental again in making the American people numb and passive to the efforts of government to remove a foreign regime in another country.
    God bless the Iranian people!

    June 18, 2009 at 9:46 am |
  7. Sima

    This message is for our dear dear President Obama and all those who think there is not much difference between Ahmadinejad and Mousavi in Iran:
    If that is true why do you think millions of people are in the streets for 5 days in a row now? Beleive me for someone who has many family members in Iran I know that the difference is like day and night.
    Differences might seem small but Iranians will reach a stable democratic country via small steps like these. One step at a time is what might take us toward Democracy, anything else will turn us to another Iraq which I am sure all Iranians would prefer present situation to that option.

    June 18, 2009 at 9:49 am |
  8. Raine Beamer

    The coverage of the Iranian election and the aftermath that's followed has been the best it possibly can be given the restrictions. My question to those who are stating that our President has not been "stong" enough (i.e. Sen. McCain, etc.) would be: "What would you like our President to do?". Invade Iran the way the previous administration invaded Iraq? That's worked out so well, hasn't it? Not so much. I think our President's reaction/comments have been absolutely appropriate. So until his critics can come up with a concrete plan that would be of more benefit, President Obama is and will remain the leader of the free world.

    June 18, 2009 at 9:49 am |
  9. operationmockingbird

    The coverage is very strange. You are reporting as news all these tweets and and other internet comments and running 24/7 with it, even though these are events in a foreign country and yet when they were cracking heads here in america during bush's inaugaration cnn showed nothing. And also cnn barely showed the anti-war protests. We all know american corporate-run media functions just like state-run media and this is the explanation for these phenomena. It looks to me like ahmadinejad won the election by the percent a poll showed he would win by, and the losers are just screaming and yelling loudly and are being aided by western media at the request of their governments.

    June 18, 2009 at 9:51 am |
  10. marsh

    i think we should know whats going on but stay out of it until iran makes a decision–they or anyone even our own people in america did nothing in 2000 election bush and gore –what differece ?

    June 18, 2009 at 10:01 am |
  11. Chris

    social media seems to be replacing the old AP and UPI – "citizen journalist" are like the stringers for those Int'l press feeds – and CNN, etc. does the vetting as well as you can. It's wonderful team work! GO CITIZEN JOURNALIST from IRAN!

    June 18, 2009 at 10:18 am |
  12. Nostromo

    The best thing president Obama could do is to ask the population of Iran to calm down. These folks are about to get slaughtered, and everyone who is anyone in the intelligence gathering community surely knows this. The stamp of CIA and israel is obvious on this movement. This is not a grass roots movement from within Iran. It is certainly incited from the outside; likely for geo-political gains.
    Unfortunately, the only ones who would pay the real price will be the ones who will get slaughtered soon by the forces of the Iranian regime. Everyone knows what a brutal regime this is.
    Please help stop the immenent, mass killing of these people. Certainly there are better ways to change things in Iran.

    June 18, 2009 at 10:23 am |
  13. Karl Dawood

    Evidence has shown Iran to be outfitting militants for years in both Iran and Afghanistan posing a direct conflict to American troops and their mission to create stability in those countries. Iran also offers support to countless terrorist groups. Our troops do straddle their borders and I'm curious, would it really be out of line for the US step up and atleast offer serious assistance for the movement in Iran if they asked for it? Is it a possibility, especially if this movement picks up speed?

    June 18, 2009 at 10:27 am |
  14. Roxanne Ganji

    I am so glad that after 30 years the voice of the people of Iran and the democratic, secular opposition is being broadcasted by CNN. The people of Iran have been demanding respect of individual rights and a Constitutional democratic government for the past 30 years, and have been fooled not only by the mullahs supporting the so called reform movement that failed during the 8 years of Khatami, but by those factions outside also supporting such ideology.
    The Islamic Republic was built on the Motto of "DEATH TO AMERICA" & "DEATH TO ISRAEL" and can not back out of this ideology & slogan now. This regime is not capable of changing its ways. The only way for the people of Iran to achieve their goals for freedom,democracy and secularism is through "REGIME CHANGE".

    June 18, 2009 at 10:29 am |
  15. Raul Hernandez-Baquero

    Regarding Iran I strongly beleive USA must stay OUT of the problem until the muslims countries in the region say or do something FIRST !

    June 18, 2009 at 10:30 am |
  16. John Showalter

    Free and unfettered communication between the peoples of the world will lead to greater understanding and eventually the overthrow of all oppressive governments. We are in the midst of history in the making and live in a truly amazing age. I am encouraged for the future of humankind! Long live the Internet!

    June 18, 2009 at 10:47 am |
  17. Nostromo

    The Iranian regime is NOT going to disappear that easily. They are simply waiting to first identify the "leaders" and heads of this current movement in Iran (some of them likely on the payroll of western intelligence aparatus). The regime has shown in the past that they are adept at this task. At some point in the near future, they will strike. They will not only eliminate the heads of this movement (and surely charge them with espionage), but also they will not hesitate to exact a toll on the unwitting, clueless masses that are marching in silence. There will be carnage very soon. Please ask your reporters to really consider this possibility. By doing so, you may have a chance of averting this eventuality. Please think, as responsible journalists. Report, but report on the roots of this whole thing, and be alert. I am not sure if you are doing that right now. Your reporting, thus far, is rather superficial.

    June 18, 2009 at 10:58 am |
  18. suhail

    its amazing keeps u at the edge of the seat chair sofa come on there r other things going around what about those people who lost their jobs and r living in tent about nearly 1 million people displaced in pakistan to fight al qaeeda they had 2 give up thier HOME QASSA GHETTO

    June 18, 2009 at 11:44 am |
  19. David

    I think it's frustrating that international press coverage is not allowed or severely restricted. Hopefully the information coming out through social media and other sources will help prevent a violent crackdown. Seems like the situation in Iran is kind of delicate.

    Its hard to be swept up in a crisis and be limited to only glimpses of what's going on, or only brief messages from unidentified sources. It's kind of like hitting a wall repeatedly because your desire to understand keeps running into one roadblock after another.

    June 18, 2009 at 2:43 pm |
  20. sylvia busey


    June 18, 2009 at 3:08 pm |
  21. Tomasz


    There is evidence that leads to the conclusion that Mahmoud Ahmadinejad did win this election and the US media is hyping the opposition to make it seem as though those that favour Mir Mousawi are more in number than those who voted for Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

    June 18, 2009 at 7:30 pm |
  22. MarthaSF

    It has been fantastic...especially Sat. I sent a kudos earlier to Don from his Facebook page. Not sure if he has logged in lately BUT the coverage has been inspiring today! It is so important for these people's voices be heard in light of the government's total news blackout. They are not giving up. So glad to hear today that Mousavi is with them until the bitter end!

    June 20, 2009 at 7:59 pm |
  23. Dan - California

    Thank you for NOT sanitizing the carnage in Iran. The world needs to see the true colors of the Supreme Thug.
    CNN is doing a great job under the circumstances

    June 20, 2009 at 11:01 pm |
  24. Wendy Davis

    A coup is being attempted in an Axis of Evil deemed country by the young and armless and CNN covers The Jonas Brothers. A battle ship with probable bad intentions is heading toward Hawaii and CNN covers the topic for 30 seconds as it's 4th story last night, as Erika Erica grimaces and shudders at the prospect of what could come, make up and hair in place and a smile to go. Gee. Passionless talking heads who seem to be acting rather than reporting the TRUTH.

    June 20, 2009 at 11:07 pm |
  25. Larry Liggett

    Iran's blood thirsty supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has accused the United States of being the great satan. Now the whole world has witnessed who the real great saten really is

    June 20, 2009 at 11:08 pm |
  26. Phyllis Kritek

    I have appreciated your coverage of the events in Iran, particularly the superb work of Amanpour, who demonstrates superior journalism. I have also been increasingly distressed by your fixation on airing comments from Republicans, most demonstrably ill-informed, who think President Obama should be "tougher", apparently totally unable to understand the nuanced nature of what he is doing.

    The biggest reason this is upsetting is that you also have had several very knowledgable spokespersons strongly state that it is critical that President Obama do exactly what he is doing. Just now another person tried to tell Don Lemon this and he was effectively silenced. Showing President Obama taking his kids for ice cream being compared to President Bush's failures was almost shameful.

    The biggest reason this is bothering me is that you have been told by many experts that if there is any indication that the United States is backing the protesters, it could lead to their deaths. This seems a huge moral issue. Yet you keep messing with this.

    You claim senstivity to the protesters by blocking names and the face of the woman who was killed. Yet your programming de facto feeds the pressure on Obama to take an action that experts who really know Iran clearly state could put the protesters in increased jeopardy. It seems morally irresponsible, as if trying to feed a conflict locally is so important you would risk the lives of these brave Iranians. Maybe you should listen to Amanpour's show: the Republican spokesman was living in the past; the experts said President Obama was doing the exact thing he should.

    June 20, 2009 at 11:11 pm |
  27. Diane

    I agree w/you Terrance. Where are the reports of similar events going on in the Congo & other violent & corrupt peoples of the world? Where is the news around the world? Why is Korea given a scroll when it is clearly the most dangerous situation, globally in this moment in time? If we're going to be inundated w/bad news, let's hear it all!

    June 20, 2009 at 11:12 pm |
  28. Sarah Hashemi

    It is very disappointing to see CNN reporting so heavily on unverifiable information, images and rumors coming out of Iran via social networking sites and then to see Don Lemon, when interviewing an Iranian documentarian who is obviously well-informed on the relevant issues, rudely interrupt and speak over him so that his insights cannot be understood by the viewing audience. Your coverage is obviously biased. Your viewing audience needs to see and hear as many viewpoints as possible, not just those that validate our own feelings. As Americans, we act as though what is happening in Iran could never happen here, but we don't have to look very far back into our own history–only into the civil rights era–to find similar occurrences on our own streets and college campuses.

    Furthermore, why aren't you so heavily covering other deadly conflicts such as that in Darfur? And why were the elections that were stolen in the United States during our last administration not worthy of 24-hour coverage?

    June 20, 2009 at 11:41 pm |
  29. Rick Rogers

    Way too many commercials, seems CNN is intent on profiting from these historic moments. And Don Lemon and/or his bosses allow only short time slots for otherwise very interesting and informative interviews with experts. Don sits there and talks for a minute or two before finally asking his question, then the person being interviewed keeps being told about time constraints and getting cut off. Just so CNN can run another 2-3 minutes of commercials. Then Don spends more time telling people how to become an I reporter. He's done that at least a half dozen times! Allot some of that time (and reduce the number of commercials) for the experts, and let's have longer conversations with these experts.................and please give the experts more than 30 seconds to answer a question or make their point!!!! Otherwise, CNN's coverage is simply way too fragmentized when CNN has the opportunity to do the right thing with their coverage decisions.

    June 21, 2009 at 12:11 am |
  30. David

    Thank you for not posting my totally on it comments from Thursday. What's the hold up?

    June 21, 2009 at 3:56 pm |
  31. William Todd

    What has been the news coverage of the Iranian election and protests in other Arab countries?

    June 21, 2009 at 7:51 pm |
  32. Marie

    I am astounded that the UN, which we would normally believe is in place to protect our human rights worldwide, can stand by idly without taking any action in the situation happening in Iran. I can understand president Obama’s stance on the situation, but surely the UN should take action. It seems to me now that the UN is useless in emergency situations! They should really DO SOMETHING! THIS IS REAL LIFE, NOT A MOVIE!

    June 21, 2009 at 10:41 pm |
  33. Keitakay

    The horrific images being seen by the world cause heightened tensions and emotions, but we must remember that much of what we are looking at cannot be verified. Not having all the facts has caused America to draw incorrect conclusions before and "step in to do something to help" has landed our men and women in two wars! Let's get the facts!

    June 21, 2009 at 10:42 pm |
  34. Rubina

    Last night I saw the beating of a black clad grandmother and thought of the women in Afganistan wearing the blue burqas being beaten by the Taliban.

    June 21, 2009 at 11:16 pm |
  35. steve

    CNN's coverage on Iran has been outstanding considering the blockage of the media and information from Iran. I would like to thank all your reporters,writers,techs,producers and the management for your dedication to this story. Dear Mr. lemon, I commend you on your intelligent and passionate reporting and your grasp of this clamity comes accross very geniune. it has been such great coverage that you remind me of a young Ted Coppel. Thankyou and wish you the best.

    June 21, 2009 at 11:30 pm |
  36. Kaveh

    It's time to arm the people of Iran. The playing field must be leveled for those courageous young people against the heavily armed riot police. If the Islamic regime has no regard for the lives and safety of Iranians, people should be given any assistance to defend themselves against the atrocities of the oppressive regime.

    June 22, 2009 at 6:18 pm |

    I sympathize with the Iranians, we had an election stolen in the USA when George Bush first came into office by being selected by the Supreme Court.

    June 23, 2009 at 9:32 am |
  38. Mike Kirner

    Frankly, I am sick to death hearing about Iran's stupid elections. Yes, it's awful that some poor young woman was killed. Yes, their nation is in trouble with their goofball Ahmad/Hitler in charge.

    However, Oakland, California and other US cities have murders of children and women every week of the month.

    We need to focus on the United States of America. This Islamic nonsense is boring me. Can't they just dissappear?

    June 24, 2009 at 11:59 am |
  39. Martin in Shoreline, WA

    What is wrong with everyone? What do you think would happen in this country, if people had rioted in the streets after George W. was "reelected"? What do you think would happen today, if they took to the rooftops screaming, "Death to Obama!"? I assure you that the wrath of our police and military would be used with extreme prejudice.

    The hypocrisy of Americans never ceases to amaze me. It is no wonder that so many people around the world hate us.

    June 24, 2009 at 5:36 pm |
  40. John in Seattle, WA

    I think your coverage is a joke. You are not news people. You are sensationalists. All of the mainstream news media in America is tabloid. You are reporting things that you willingly admit have not been verified. Not to mention the fact that our government responds to rioters in the exact same way. And every hypocrite commenting here in support of the Iranian people, would support our own police putting down rioters in America. Why do we expect other nations to act differently?

    June 24, 2009 at 6:34 pm |

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