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Commentary By Judith Miller

Execution of Iranian Protestor May Kick Off Even More Violent Regime Crackdown

Biden should focus on behind-the-scenes efforts to support Iranian protesters

Mohsen Shekari, 23, was not the first Iranian protester to be killed Thursday for demanding freedom in the nation-wide demonstrations that have rocked Iran since September. Human rights groups estimate that over 450 civilians been killed, and some 18,000 arrested, in the nearly three months of demonstrations that have morphed into a nation-wide protest of clerical rule that the regime has been unable to contain.

But the government’s announcement of Shekari’s execution for "waging war against God" marks an escalation of its campaign to suppress the protests that could well signal the start of an even more violent phase of its crackdown.

While Washington has sanctioned individual Iranians tied to the regime’s repression and criticized the Iranian government’s "brutal" campaign of violence and intimidation, President Biden has yet to condemn the regime in a major speech or officially suspend his now stalled efforts to negotiate a return to the 2015 agreement aimed at stopping Iran from building a nuclear bomb.

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Judith Miller is a contributing editor of City Journal and adjunct fellow at the Manhattan Institute. Follow her on Twitter here.

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