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Riots? What riots?

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Last time Iran was in the World Cup, their appearance sparked pro-democracy riots in Tehran and a throng of protesters showed up at the Federal Building in Westwood (yes, we know it seems like that happens every week).

This year, Iran not only made it to the World Cup, but their first game was against Mexico -- another country not unfamiliar with the soccer-sparked riot.

In the end, Iran lost. By a lot. But in Tehran, streets were empty, and shops closed in response to the game -- and to prevent any rioting. At least they get to speak during the game.

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Still, what about the protests here in the U.S., now that the American team got crushed by the Czech Republic? Maybe we only riot when Mexico plays.

President Bush called the team beforehand to offer encouragement; but he's probably happier and more interested in how the Iranian team is playing, considering if they advance to Round 2 it could spark an international incident with President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Image courtesy of Flickr: poetictouch.