The Iranian Dissident Fitness Program

Abtahi, before and after
As mass trials against reformist elements take place in Iran, the government is denying accusations of violence against those detained in the wake of the recent disputed presidential election. For example:

When a former vice president, the usually rotund cleric Muhammad Ali Abtahi, was shown on television during a courtroom appearance – forced to wear pajamas – he appeared gaunt and haggard. This week, a government official said that was not a sign of abuse, but of Mr. Abtahi’s improved health.

“It is only natural for a person who has gained an excessive amount of weight to come to his senses in prison that being overweight is not good for your mental or physical health,” said the official, Ali Akbar Javanfekr, President Ahmadinejad’s adviser for press affairs, according to Iranian news services.

Me-owch! They sure are catty over there! Also rapey. There’s a whole lot of raping going on.