June 29, 2009 6:28 PM

In Afghanistan, crackdown hurts Iran's once-sterling image

Last week, the Iranian Consulate in Herat, an Afghan city near the Iranian border, complained to the Afghan Ministry of Culture that the student newspaper, "Pegah," was inappropriately critical of Tehran's crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrators. The newspaper was closed for 10 days, the university fired the responsible journalists and the paper was reopened with no news of the protests. But the measure is likely to backfire among a youthful population that until the events of the past weeks had looked up to Iran.

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