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Iranian Diva Supports Gay Rights In New Music Video: WATCH

Googoosh

Last Friday Iranian singer GooGoosh released a special Valentine’s Day video for her song, “Behesht” (“Eden”) that shows the singer's support for the "freedom to love. For all." The video follows a fictional lesbian couple and seminal moments moments in their life together: the day they got engaged, a hate-filled encounter on the subway, meeting the parents and failing to receive the acceptance they might have hoped for, and finally, more powerful than all the rest, the everyday moments in their lives in which their love for each other shines through.

No doubt this video will offer inspiration to many of GooGoosh’s fans in Iran and abroad along with others may never heard her music before.

Watch the video and read the lyrics, AFTER THE JUMP…

Couple

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"I" a Visual Poem by LGBT Iranians: WATCH

Screen Shot 2014-01-02 at 8.55.41 AM

A short, moving visual poem by JD Kamran about LGBT Iranians and their struggle for visibility.

The video is a production of the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission.

Check it out, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading ""I" a Visual Poem by LGBT Iranians: WATCH" »


John Kerry Defends International Accord to Halt Iran's Nuclear Program: VIDEO

Kerry

Secretary of State John Kerry appeared on CNN's State of the Union this morning to discuss the nuclear deal that would freeze Iran's nuclear program.

Watch Kerry defend the deal, AFTER THE JUMP...

IranThe details of the plan, via the NYT:

Iran, which has long resisted international monitoring efforts and built clandestine nuclear facilities, agreed to stop enriching uranium beyond 5 percent, a level that would be sufficient for energy production but that would require further enrichment for bomb-making. To make good on that pledge, Iran will dismantle links between networks of centrifuges.

Its stockpile of uranium enriched to 20 percent, a short hop from weapons-grade fuel, would be diluted or converted into oxide so that it could not be readily used for military purposes. Iran agreed that it would not install any new centrifuges, start up any that are not already operating or build new enrichment facilities.

The agreement, however, does not require Iran to stop enriching uranium to a low level of 3.5 percent, or to dismantle any of its existing centrifuges.

The paper adds:

Two former American national security advisers, Zbigniew Brzezinski and Brent Scowcroft, recently sent a letter to key American lawmakers endorsing the administration’s approach. “The apparent commitment of the new government of Iran to reverse course on its nuclear activities needs to be tested to insure it cannot rapidly build a nuclear weapon,” they wrote.

But some experts, including a former official who has worked on the Iranian issue for the White House, said it was unlikely that Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, would ever close the door on the option to develop nuclear weapons. Instead, they said, any initial six-month agreement is more likely to be followed by a series of partial agreements that constrain Iran’s nuclear activities but do not definitively solve the nuclear issues.

Israel is not happy with the deal, wanting a stronger agreement that would have done away with Iran's enrichment program permanently.

NetanyahuTweeted Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu:

"This is not a historic agreement, it's a historic mistake. Lifting the pressure, this "first step", might be the last step. Like the agreement reached with North Korea in 2005, this agreement has made the world a much more dangerous place. For years the intl community has demanded that Iran cease uranium enrichment. Now it consents to it, in direct contravention of UNSC res. Iran is taking only cosmetic steps that could easily reversed, and in return, sanctions that took years to put in place will be eased. Without continued pressure, what incentive does Iran have to take serious steps that actually dismantle its nuclear weapons capability?"

Congressional Republicans are not happy with the deal, CNN reports:

In tweets and official statements, House and Senate Republicans argued that the administration was appeasing a duplicitous enemy without securing enough concessions in return.

"Unless the agreement requires dismantling of the Iranian centrifuges, we really haven't gained anything," tweeted Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina.

"By allowing the Iranian regime to retain a sizable nuclear infrastructure, this agreement makes a nuclear Iran more likely," said Sen. Marco Rubio, the freshman Florida Republican and potential presidential candidate in 2016. "This agreement shows other rogue states that wish to go nuclear that you can obfuscate, cheat, and lie for a decade, and eventually the United States will tire and drop key demands."

Watch Kerry defend the deal, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Iran President Ahmadinejad Wants to 'Sacrifice' Himself for Science and Be Sent into Space

Iran President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad wants to be his country's first astronaut, the AP reports:

AhmadinejadPresident Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Monday that he's ready to take the risk of being the first Iranian astronaut sent into space as part of Iran's goal of a manned space flight.

"I'm ready to be the first Iranian to sacrifice myself for our country's scientists," the official IRNA news agency quoted him as saying in an address to space scientists in Tehran.

Space tourist Anousheh Ansari was the first Iranian to make a journey into space aboard a Soyuz TMA-9 capsule from Baikonur, Kazakhastan, in September 2006. The 40-year-old telecommunications entrepreneur paid a reported $20 million for a space station visit. Her journey became an inspiration to women in male-dominated Iran.

Iran sent a monkey into space last week.

Which prompted John McCain to put in his racist $.02.

Inspiring reaction from many, including lawmakers:

Seeing that, Michigan congressman Rep. Justin Amash, 32, shot back. “Maybe you should wisen up & not make racist jokes,” Amash tweeted.

Not everyone on the right agreed with Amash. Conservative John Podhoretz, for example, Tweeted this: "How dare McCain say something demeaning & disparaging abt the foremost anti-Semite on the planet." And this: "So...it's defend-the-Jew-hater-from-the-war-hero day."


Iran Sends Monkey into Space: VIDEO

Monkey

Iran has send a monkey into space in what it says is a prelude to sending humans, the NYT reports:

There was no independent corroboration of the report, which Press TV called evidence of “yet another” scientific achievement following earlier claims that satellites and living creatures had been launched into space. Western monitors have not announced any missiles launchings by Iran in recent days.

The state news agency, IRNA, said the monkey was sent into space on a Kavoshgar rocket that reached a height of 75 miles and “returned its shipment intact,” Reuters reported. The monkey survived, according to Press TV.

The timing of the reported launching was unclear — either on Monday or within the past few days. An earlier attempt to launch a monkey into space in 2011 was reported to have failed.

A year earlier, Iran said it sent a mouse, a turtle and worms into space.

Watch a news report on the mission, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Towleroad Guide to the Tube #1292

REMEMBER THIS?: An ad that ran for a number of years telling you, yes you, to get a new television ahead of the Super Bowl.

BRAVE: Men experience labor pains.

REAL LOVE: Video for the Divine Fits' single "My Love is Real."

ASYLUM: Gay Iranians looking for safe space.

For recent Guides to the Tube, click HERE.


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