Beheshti had some run-ins with authorities, opposition websites reported, including being detained in 1999 after student protests at Tehran University. But by 2012 he was just one of hundreds of voices on the Web hitting the same notes: anger over the increasingly heavy hand of Iran’s authorities and frustration over the systematic crushing of the pro-reform Green Movement after the 2009 postelection unrest.
As recently as September, Beheshti’s blog posts were packed with political outrage, but nothing that would likely bring heat from officials. He chronicled the arrests and court hearings for activists and others. He kept lists of opposition figured behind bars.
In October, however, the tone began to shift. Beheshti began to flirt with the well-known red lines in Iran, including direct criticism of Khamenei and calls for open revolt. It’s not known why he began to ramp up his defiance, but it appeared to coincide with heavier pressure from the Web-monitoring forces.
‘‘As an Iranian, I hereby request all activists and parties to form a unified movement for a countrywide uprising,’’ he posted Oct. 2. The following day he continued: ‘‘The only way to liberation is through civil protests and strikes. Violence is not our aim. We just seek our rights ... You, the rulers of the country, this is the anger of a world-weary nation. You better hear it.’’
A week later, he wrote an open letter to Khamenei. It accuses him of trying to cover up the depths of the country’s economic crisis under Western sanctions seeking to rein in Tehran’s nuclear program. ‘‘You suppress the protests with club and mace,’’ he posted.
‘‘At the moment, the poor and deprived are rebelling,’’ he wrote Oct. 20. ‘‘If they really rise, even the Revolutionary Guard cannot stop them.’’
And again on Oct. 22, he returned to Khamenei and his control of Iran’s judiciary, which he called a ‘‘slaughterhouse’’ for free expression.
‘‘I can call you an artist,’’ Beheshti wrote in reference to Khamenei, ‘‘in the art of killing. Believe me, I consider you an artist.’’
His last post he described alleged threats from authorities to close down the site or face being ‘‘shut up with no trace.’’
‘‘They say I talk too much,’’ he joked darkly.
‘‘The Islamic Republic is putting immense pressure on activists and independent Iranians,’’ he added, ‘‘telling them they have no rights to express their opinions about the affairs in the country; threatening them in various ways from arrest to torture ... to death in order to intimidate them.
‘‘Don’t intimidate us with your threats as there is no fear in our hearts.’’