IRAN: Summary Justice

Harsh penalties for those who sowed "corruption on earth"

In the euphoric days that followed the exile of the Shah, the streets of Iran's cities echoed to the rallying cry of the Islamic revolution: "Allahu Akbar!" (God is great!). Last week those shouts were heard again, this time from behind the walls of Qasr prison, a grim fortress in downtown Tehran. "Allahu Akbar!" shouted witnesses at closed trials of military men and government officials who had served the Shah. "Allahu Akbar!" cried members of the firing squads that dispatched the condemned.

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