08:00 am EST
Everyone we have spoken to so far this morning has said about the same thing — in a word or two: “A big anticlimax,” “defeat,” “An overwhelming presence from the other side. People were terrified.”
In fact, it appears that the regime was so confident, it did not feel the need to disrupt cellphone or messaging services, or even the internet for that matter.
One Tehran Bureau correspondent relayed the following:
Today has been a bust. Lots of people left town, left the country. There was extra security. I was down at Azadi Square, and they [regime] couldn’t even get the huge crowd they wanted. It didn’t matter though, because the Greens either didn’t show up or authorities were successful in keeping them out.
The square was crowded, but not super crazy. There were definitely a lot of people, but compared to the way it’s been filled by Greens a couple of times, it was much less than that. One could move around and it wasn’t the crush of people you sometimes see (except in the front). I think they used all their resources to get people there, but the fact is this was a five-day weekend this year and many people (even from their side) just decided to get out of town. They also blocked all of the entryways into the area, so it was hard to get in without permission.
Sunday May 19th 2013