Laura Secor, reporter with The New Yorker, has written a lengthy piece about the situation in Iran. It attempts to explain the current political developments in the country, and should be required reading for anyone who wants to understand the recent chicken-race when it comes to Iran’s atom program.

It’s a really nice read, and she interviews both public and not-so-public people, in her – seemingly genuine – quest to explain the apparent quirkiness of another culture. The result is an honest account, if maybe somewhat normative at the egdes. Hossein Derakhshan, aka Hoder – exile Iranian ?berblogger, gives the article his blessing and calls it the deepest and most insightful piece by an American he’s ever read. That I cannot judge, I’ll just have to take his word for it.

The article describes the political and public sphere, and how participation sometimes is frowned upon – to say the least. She quotes: “We have freedom of expression – just not freedom after expression”. Particularly interesting was the section about blogger Roozbeh Mirebrahimi, who was jailed last fall for writing material on his blog that stirred up emotions among the rulers. The story has been told before, from another perspective, but the account is more detailed.