Monday, September 26, 2005

Iranian Blogger in Danger of his Life

I always say to myself how lucky I am living in a democracy, and I despair at those who do not appreciate this great privilege. To be able to think and say and write what I want, without having to look over my shoulder is one of the greatest gifts in my life. What a marvelous prerogative it is to just log on to my weblog, write away and know that my life or liberty is not in danger.

Sadly this is not the case for Iranian bloggers. Along with the newspapers, Iranian bloggers have been at the receiving end of a vicious onslaught by the Islamic judiciary. Many have been jailed and received unbelievably long sentences. One of the Iranian bloggers in danger right now, is Ahmad (Iranian name Aryo), Seraji from the town of my birth, Tabriz.

Aryo was kidnapped outside his house by ten Islamic secret service men in two unmarked cars. Despite being outnumbered, Aryo fought the plain clothes agents fiercely until the agents had to resort to using chloroform dabbed handkerchief over his nose to put him out and drag him away.

Aryo was arrested on prior occasions too and on one occasion after his release, he travelled to Tehran and chained himself to a pole outside the UN headquarters in Tehran, to protest at his ill treatment and the abuse of his human rights in the Islamic Republic. Needless to say, the apathetic UN staff paid no attention, what do they care about an individual protesting at his human rights abuse? they are there to draw a salary!

Aryo has been beaten badly and placed alongside drug addicts and common criminals in Tabriz prison. His seventy-two year old mother is devastated and there are genuine fears for her health too. The charge against Aryo, is the usual, "Acting against national security".
Pitty the state whose national security is threatened by a blogger! what shaky foundations it must be on.

Friday, September 23, 2005

More Pictures of Resistance to Iraqi Aggression

In the absence of expert military leadership, ordinary Iranian civilians defend Abadan.

City of Khorramshahr Totally Destroyed by Ba'athist forces.

Defending the Motherland Inch by Inch

No Turning Back.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Anniversary of a National Epic

The word "Epic" is not enough to describe the heroic resistance of Iranians against Saddam's aggression against our country.

Saddam Hossein once said, "Allah only made two mistakes during creation, harmful insects and Persians"

Invasion of our country was attempted many times by Saddam before the revolution, but on every occasion, the might of Iranian army had repelled his forces and put him in his place

I remember as a child when I saw the headline on the front page of a newspaper, and the anxiety I felt when I read "41 Iranian Soldiers Martyred in the Border Battle"
But no sooner than the next day, Iranian military had pushed back Saddam's forces where they belonged, i.e. on the other side of the Arvand river.

Iran's armed forces however were crippled after the Islamic revolution. Many of Iran's generals were executed straight after the revolution and many of its finest officers and airmen were
executed after the uprising in Shahrokhi air base, shortly before the all out Iraqi invasion.

Saddam must have thought there is no better time to invade Iran than now. He compared his initial successes with that of the Ghadessieh battle, 1400 years earlier, when the Arabs invaded Iran to destroy our civilization.
Just as in the days of the Ghadessieh, when the Arabs looted and destroyed; Saddam's henchmen also looted and destroyed. Khorramshahr was treated by the new invaders the same as Ctesiphon was. In those days, the invading Arabs had no concept of a number beyond 1000. To them one thousand was the highest number possible. They did not know what to do and how to divide a booty with more than 1000 gold coins. The huge Baharestan carpet, with its silk and gold threads was cut into small fragments and divided amongst the victorious savages. The new invaders showed no less savagery than their predecessors. Khorramshahr was flattened, women and children were not spared.

Yet Saddam's rantings of "Second Ghadessieh" became his nightmare. Iranians fought back with tooth and nails against his superior military power to regain the Iranian soil, inch by inch. Iranians were poorly trained, badly equipped, incompetently led, but fought like lions.

The war should have been stopped when all Iranian soil was regained. At the time, with the help of Gulf sheikhdoms, Saddam was offering a huge compensation for his invasion of Iran, yet the mullahs wanted to continue the war and turn Iraq into the next Islamic Republic. Thousands more died unnecessarily while some lined their pockets, until Iran's tanks were running out of petrol in the battlefields and Saddam's use of chemical weapons overwhelmed our troops. Suddenly Khomeini had to drink his famous "hemlock goblet" and signed the peace treaty with no tangible gains for either side.

Today many of our war veteran heroes are living a life of misery, bad health and poverty. When I hear a war veteran having to sell his kidney to pay his debts, I feel the same as I did when Saddam bombed Mehrabad airport.
On the anniversary of the Iraqi invasion, this week, let us pay tribute to the courage and sacrifice of those who laid their lives to defend the motherland, and let us not forget the veterans who survived and need our help now.

Iranian children victims of Iraqi missile on a primary school in Dezful.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Some Observations on the Sivand Dam Debate

The strong reaction showed by Iranians across the world with regards to the building of the Sivand dam and the possible dangers it may cause to our national heritage sites, has made me to conclude several points below.

Despite all the reports of apathy amongst Iranians, our inherent sense of nationalism always come to surface when Iran's being and identity is threatened.

The opposition groups as usual are like a close circuit TV, and are not able to correctly judge the mood of the nation or apply any leadership or organisation.

Our media stinks. We all know the harm LA based TVs have caused but the problems go further even to most web based news portals, which seem to be engaged in a copy & paste activity only.

Our "journalists" outside Iran are not able to judge news worthy reports or have the enthusiasm to gather the news. They are under the impression that journalists should have the news stories written and typed and have them placed on their lap.

Monday, September 19, 2005

Sunday, September 18, 2005

4th Day Outside the British Museum

Another fantastic day outside the British Museum, collecting signatures against the building of the Sivand dam. Today we managed to man the petition desk almost for the full day.

One of the first signatories were an Iraqi family who had come to visit the Ancient Iran exhibition. "We have lost 35% of our national heritage" the female member of the family said with great sadness in her face as she signed our petition.
What a moving moment I thought. The regimes of Iran and Iraq engaged the people of both countries in a futile 8 year war and yet here were an Iraqi family who had come to visit the Ancient Iran exhibition and cared enough to sign our petition.

Ironically shortly after the Iraqi family, there was an Afghan family who signed the petition. No need to remind you of how familiar they were with the destruction of their national heritage at the hands of zealots.

There was also another young couple on bicycles. They had been to Pasargard only three months ago, cycling across Iran for two months and in that short time they were so fluent in Persian that they conversed with us in Persian.

I rang up a reporter from radio Farda and after some wrangling, I convinced her that our action was worth some news coverage. In response to one of her questions, I mentioned how we have collected signatures from so many different nationalities. Yet I forgot to tell her the different mix of the people we had manning the petition desk today.

We had Kurdish, Azeri, Arab speaking Iranian, Lor, Gilaki and youngsters who were born outside Iran helping the petition desk today.
Those who desperately conspire against the national integrity and unity of Iran should learn a lesson from this. The bond between different people of Iran is too deep rooted and too strong for anyone to attempt to break it. We are fingers of a clenched fist and the arm which holds us is 100% Iranian.

Is Ganji Being Subjected to White Torture?

Ma'ssoumeh Shafii, the loyal wife of Iranian journalist and dissident, Akbar Ganji, has expressed fears that Ganji may be being subjected to "white torture".

"White torture", is a method of torture the Islamic Republic henchmen have picked up from their North Korean colleagues. To apply this method, the prisoner is placed in a white cell, with white walls, white ceiling, white floor, white door, and is also dressed in white overalls. Even the food given to him will be white, like yogurt and rice. The prisoner is put in a cell with complete silence, he will not hear any noise other than his own breathing and no guards will talk to him. After some time the prisoner loses all concepts of dimension and will suffer a variety of mental illnesses.

Ganji was promised freedom and broke his 78 day long hunger strike, but since then he was returned to prison and no one has been allowed to see him.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

3rd Day Outside the British Museum

We managed to set up the petition desk by 2 PM today. Same enthusiastic response from passers by as on the previous occasions and also a chance to talk to them about the latest updates from Iran.

I Could only stay for an hour today however. Many thanks to Safa, Arash, Mardavij and others who kept the petition going today. We will be out there again tomorrow.

We also had a few casualties :). Two volunteers had car accidents on their way to join us and Safa's car got clamped even though he was displaying a valid ticket.

Many people have asked us what they can do to help us. Here is a few ideas:

- We need more volunteers to man the petition desk to ease the burden on others.

- We need some T-shirts printed, see the designs below. Wearing these T-shirts will be more eye catching and also it will make it easier to tell people what we are doing.

- We need help in transport.

- We need help in printing leaflets and posters.

- We need help in creating more publicity for our action.

Friday, September 16, 2005

Grievances of a Champion

Ehsan Haddadi, is a 20 year old Iranian discus champion. By throwing the discus to a distance of 65 meters and 25 cm, he broke the Asian records and obtained a gold medal for his country.

He is not even a has been, yet the grievances he discusses with an Iranian sports magazine at the height of his career are truly heartbreaking.

He has had offers to become naturalized citizen for Qatar and US and throw the discus for them, but he has turned down the offers, saying "I want to throw for Iran."

His Belarussian coach, Victor Gutor, can earn double his salary if he works with Saudi Arabian athletes, yet Gutor says "I want to stay with Ehsan until he becomes the world champion."

Despite all this potential, Ehsan talks about how in Qatar, he had no money to buy food until he found a restaurant owned by an Iranian who then let Ehsan and his coach dine there for free.

In a country with so much revenue and so much natural wealth, it is truly heartbreaking to hear how a champion athlete is treated, yet this is only indicative of how Islamic Republic treats all her other bright citizens. No wonder the Islamic Republic has the shameful record of the highest brain drain from the country.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Ganji's Family Didn't Say Thank You!

A spokesman from Iran's justice ministry, Jalal Karimi Rad said that Iranian authorities are annoyed with Ganji's family, who "did not even thank us for paying the hospital bill" which amounted to 14,000 Euro for his treatment at the Milad hospital in Tehran.

Ganji's wife - Massoumeh Shafii - told Adnkronos International (AKI) that, for the last two weeks she was not allowed to see her husband. An employee at Tehran's Evin prison told Shafii that "nobody would take responsability for the prisoner's health condition."

Massomeh Shafii added that she had written to UN Secretary General Kofi Annan calling on him to intervene to secure her husband's release.

Ahmadi-Nejad in UN

News websites have reported between five thousand to fifteen thousand Iranians who have turned up to protest at Ahmadi-Nejad's visit to UN.

Well done to all those who took time off and took part in the protest to show the world that this Hojjatieh protege is not a representative of our country.

On a humorous note, although I am not sure how it will translate, but I will do my best. Just before leaving for UN, Ahmadi-Nejad made a speech in the Islamic

Consultative Assembly deriding the previous Iranian adminstration's nuclear negotiations with the West. He wanted to compare the agreements with the disgraceful treaties signed by the Qajar Kings in the last century known as Torkamanchai and Golestan treaties. Not being well versed in either Persian language or Iranian history however, he referred to them as "Torkamanchai and Golestanchai" to which one deputy replied by saying "there was no chai served in the second one". chai meaning tea in Persian :)

I am sure there will be many more such gaffs coming from the new selected president in the future.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

A Harmful Iranian Trait

How can I translate Mahfalgarayi? I suppose sectarianism is the nearest thing to it. Although Mahfal is on a smaller scale than sect. A narrow-minded and parochial outlook to decide who is within our circle and who is outside it.

This trait is common to almost all old generation Iranians, in the Iranian ruling oligarchy, the Iranian opposition, the celebrities, and media personalities alike. Mahfalgarayi is a tendency to form small closed circles where members only look after and promote their own close associates. So the prime objective is not whether a certain goal, cause or action is worthy of support but whether the individuals concerned belong to your parish circle or not.

This harmful trait has historical roots in Iran. For example in a similar fashion to today's football hooligans, Iran was a scene of Haydari versus Nemati clashes more than 100 years ago. No one knows how these sects started or why they fought each other.

Interestingly Mahfalgarayi is almost synonymous with Manghalgarayi. For most of these close parish associates in the Mahfals have a tendency to smoke opium. Its like a ritual ceremony where the members bond together and the action of smoking opium itself serves as a secret members must keep.

Most of Iran's so-called intellectuals, writers, poets, media personalities and those who refer to themselves as "journalists" smoke opium.

So for example you find various mahfals in all Iran's institutions, from Ministry of Intelligence, to the prison authorities, armed forces, and all the way down.

The same is true with the Iranian old generation outside Iran. They may even seem to debate opposite points of view in public, but when it comes to protecting the Mahfal, they are always united.

This old generation has stifled all new initiatives by the younger generation of Iranians. They continue to promote their old boring and ineffective agenda which only massages their own inflated ego and they diligently stop any new inventiveness.

The old generation that got us in this mess in 1979 still continues to choke back any step forward, through their instinctive Mahfalgarayi. Then they wonder why the Iranian opposition is so remote from the masses and the young, and why the Iranian opposition is described as a closed circuit TV, where only they themselves listen to each other's tiresome speeches.

Is it any wonder that six years after the 1999 student uprising in Iran which spread to 19 cities, and brought so much hope to all of us, the old generation that jumped on the bandwagon, especially through the LA based TV stations, and within six years made the young generation of today so indifferent and so nonchalant in the destiny of their country?

When I started this weblog, one of my intended audiences was the second generation Iranians who are born or brought up outside Iran. I wanted them to feel good about having Iranian heritage, to know that those who rule Iran today are nothing to do with the essence of being Iranian.
That being Iranian should be a real source of pride and being bi-cultural is one of the greatest gifts one can ever have. What more luck than being able to enjoy two cultures?
However as with any culture, as well as good things, there are always some bad things, we should strive to keep and promote the good aspects and do away with the harmful habits.
Mahfalgaryi of the old generation is one of those harmful habits we should actively get rid of. We should promote causes and individuals on their merits and not on their Mahfal ties.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

More Cabinet Posts for the Hojjatieh Sect

If you are not familiar with the Hojjatieh sect and what I have written before, please read this first:

Hojjatieh Sect's Hold of Power

This week two more government posts were allocated to the members of this messianic sect.
Parviz Davoodi, in charge of the Imam Khomeini Research institute, headed by Messbah-Yazdi, and a protege of Ayatollah Messbah Yazdi became the deputy president and Morteza Agha-Tehrani, one of the closest disciples of Messbah-Yazdi became the Minister of Moralities!

Talking about moralities, a report by the Judiciary was handed to the Supreme Leader on the current social time bomb in Iran. The report included the alarming increase in the number of pedophilia acts, rapes, violent crimes, protection rackets and general thuggery in society. So alarming was the judiciary's report that the Supreme Leader is said to have been shaken by some of its contents.

Of course as I have explained about the Hojjatieh sect, they welcome the spread of immorality and corruption, for that is when the Shiite Messiah will return to cleanse the earth. Another side kick of the Hojjatieh's hold on power is the spread of superstition amongst the populace.

It is reported in the Iranian dailies that a 44 year old man pretending to be the Shiite Messiah, Mehdi, has been arrested. The man only identified as "M.A" managed to gather seventy disciples, awarding them each during an elaborate ceremony with a green scarf and at first appointed a taxi driver as the sect's prayer leader, but when the taxi driver continued to make mistakes in reading his prayers, he was replaced by a 9 year old boy.

"M.A" is said to have swindled hundreds out of their savings by his bogus claims.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

2nd Day Outside British Museum

We were outside the British Museum again today from 12 o'clock onwards, collecting signatures to stop the building of the Sivand dam, which will endanger the historic sites around Pasargard.

Total number of signatures we have now collected is more than a 1000, signed by people of all professions and all nationalities.

Today we also had more volunteers and I had a chance to view the exhibition myself.
I must congratulate the British Museum, they really have put on a magnificent display of Persian Empire's artifacts. It is amazing how some of the items have remained in such good condition.

One item that really grabbed my attention was a Darik coin. On the coin there was a sun and lion engraving and a crescent underneath the lion. Clearly demonstrating the ancient origins of our Sun and Lion national emblem.

The exhibition also showed parts of the Persepolis reconstruction DVD. What overwhelming splendour, how daunting it must have been for anyone visiting the Persian court at that time.

I was taken to Persepolis as a toddler. I remember nothing of it. My father told me how he took me up to the tomb of Darius the Great, climbing the makeshift ladder, and how scared he was holding me in his arms with the wind swaying the ladder and I always joke "that wasn't the wind, that was Darius' spirit blessing me" :)

I can not now go to Persepolis, but thanks to the exhibition, parts of Persepolis came to me. These were not ordinary artifacts, they were fragments of my identity and the making of my forefathers. The bond felt so strong. I felt so proud, I was enjoying the pleasure non-Iranians were visibly displaying from watching the items and inside I was gleaming and saying, "yes this treasure belongs to me, you are welcome to share it with me."

Its hard to describe it in words, it was breath taking, and I had to fight hard to keep back the tears when the DVD reconstructed the burning of Persepolis. A moment of madness in history, enflaming all that artistry and splendour. Watching Persepolis burn in flames made what we were doing outside the Museum even more significant.
No more madness, we must preserve the heritage of our forefathers. We must make Cyrus feel proud of his children again.

When I came back outside, the chaps were collecting the signature of a young German guy who had visited Persepolis and Pasargard only two months ago. As he was signing the petition, he told us in his German accent "I must congratulate you Persians for your wonderful culture".

What a day, goose bumps and pride all the way round. As the day drew to a close, I whispered to myself looking at our poster of Cyrus' tomb "Rest well Cyrus, your sons and daughters all around the world will make you proud"

The good children of Cyrus.

(Thanks to Roxanne, Lida, Kamran, Alireza, Iman, Safa, Vahid, Mardavij and Maryam who did Cyrus proud and all those who signed)

Saving the heritage for posterity. Children signing the petition alongside their parents.

Saturday, September 10, 2005

600 Signatures to Stop the Sivand Dam Outside British Museum

British Museum started the Ancient Iran exhibition from yesterday. Today we managed to set up a desk outside the Museum's main gate and in just under three hours collected more than 600 signatures, calling for a stop to the building of Sivand dam which threatens to flood more than 100 archaeological sites including Cyrus' tomb in Pasargard.

Our desk was ornated all around with laminated posters of Cyrus' tomb in Pasargard, with the words of his epitaph "Grudge me not this humble monument"

A leaflet which included the article in the UK daily, The Guardian, about the building of the dam and the dangers it imposes was also handed out to the passers by and those who visited the British Museum.
The response from the crowd, from all different nationalities, was overwhelming. Despite the frequent showers, at times people queued up to sign the petition.

British Museum has so far declined to give us permission to hold the petition inside the museum's grounds for fears of upsetting the Islamic Republic authorities.

However, the ancient Iran exhibition has provided us with an excellent opportunity to raise awareness about the dangers of building the Sivand dam. Those of us who took part in collecting the signatures felt good that we did something to save our forefather's place of rest.

We will also be there again tomorrow. Come and help us to man the petition desk through the entire duration of the exhibition.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

An Opportunity to Raise International Awareness to Save Pasargard

British museum is holding an exhibition from this Saturday to honour the rule of the Achaemenid Empire, The First World Empire:

This presents a good opportunity for us to hand out leaflets and collect petitions from the visitors to exhibition. This will raise international awareness and build more support to save our national heritage. See: The Sivand Dam

We can use the same text used in:
Petition to Save Pasargard

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Iranian Kurdish Journalist Executed

Just learned that the Iranian Kurdish journalist Ismaiil Mohammadi was executed last Saturday, 3rd September..

Ismaiil was born in 1965 and had been in prison on death row since two years ago. His sentence was passed by branch 32 of the supreme Islamic court.

On Sunday, Ismaiil's two little girls were looking forward to visit their father in prison, instead they received their father's clothes and his last will from the Islamic henchmen.

Although many of Iran's dissidents have been killed by extra judicial methods in the last five years but this is the first official execution of a political prisoner in recent times.

The execution of Ismaiil Mohammadi could be a litmus test by the new president Ahmadi-Nejad to test the international reaction for a return to the situation in the eighties. If the international reaction is similar to the indifference displayed in the eighties, it will be a signal to Ahmadi-Nejad to start his campaign of terror.

Iranians across the world should react strongly to the execution of any of our political prisoners regardless of their political leanings.

Monday, September 05, 2005

Film of Gathering at Khavaran

Families of the victims of the 1988 massacre of Iran's political prisoners gather to remember their loved ones. Mothers and fathers who lost their sons and daughters weep at unknown graves. Children who never got to know their parents, place flowers and sing the anthems their parents sang before they were executed.

See parts of the film:

Imagine the loneliness of the teenagers who were executed in 1988. The pain of the pregnant mothers whom the Islamic Republic did not even spare their unborn babies.
Why were there no foreign correspondents there? When will the world ever hear about this atrocity?
Shame on UN, shame on all those "human rights" bodies who ignored the plight of the Iranian political prisoners in 1988, shame on all those editors and journalists who assumed the lives of Iranians fighting the religious dictatorship was not important.

Latest on Ganji

According to Ganji's wife, Ma'ssoumeh Shafii, despite the promises made to Ganji by the Islamic judiciary, that Ganji will be released once he breaks his hunger strike, the Islamic judiciary officials have gone back on their word and Ganji is once again transferred to Evin prison after leaving Milad Hospital in Tehran.

Ma'ssoumeh Shafii added, "I was told my husband will be sent home once he leaves the hospital, but instead he has been taken to Evin prison again and I have been unable to see him for over a week."

Sunday, September 04, 2005

Few Facts for Islamic Apologists who Justify London Bombings

Ken Livingston, the London Mayor, was not the only British Islamic apologist who implicitly tried to justify the London bombings by suggesting that "decades of western intervention in the Middle East and the Iraq war could have influenced the bombers.". I have heard many Islamic apologists who are poorly educated in Islam, state similar excuses. Knowingly or unknowingly these Islamic apologists serve to hearten the Islamic extremists.

A videotaped message from suicide bomber Mohammed Sadiq, who participated in the London bombings was aired on Al-Jazeera TV and contained a similar message:
"Your democratically elected governments continuously perpetuate atrocities against my people all over the world, and your support of them makes you directly responsible, just as I am directly responsible for protecting and avenging my Muslim brothers and sisters. Until we feel security, you will be our targets, and until you stop the bombing, gassing, imprisonment, and torture of my people we will not stop this fight."

A person poorly educated in Islam may feel some sympathy after hearing such nonsense, but those of us who are better informed about Islam know otherwise.

Centuries before America was formed, and at the time of the Islam's prophet Mohammad, a Jewish tribe by the name of Bani-Quorithe were defeated by the Muslims in Arabia. The seven hundred men or so were beheaded one by one in a ditch by the direct orders of the prophet.
Lets say only for argument's sake that this was a bad tribe. Lets say for arguments sake that the men of this tribe, every single one of them, deserved to be beheaded, and I am really stretching the assumptions here to say this. How on earth does any Muslim or any of their non-Muslim apologists explain as to why the women and the children of this tribe were sold as slaves? What is the justification of selling an infant of the Bani-Quorithe tribe as a slave despite whatever his father may have been responsible for?
What was the role of America and the West in justifying this atrocity??

When Iran was invaded by the Arabs and forced to accept Islam, the atrocities by the Arabs were too many to mention here. Lets just recount one of them in Istakhr; when the Arab warlord, ibn-Vaghas ordered the mills in the city to be run by the flowing blood of Iranian men, women and children and when the blood coagulated, he ordered boiling water to be poured so that the mills continue to run with the blood of Iranians. What was the reason for such atrocity? Just because Iranians did not want to become Muslims? Could not the Muslims, like other religions, just have sent their missionaries to spread the word? Why did Muslims have to commit such barbaric acts?
What was the role of America and the West in justifying this atrocity?

Lets now stretch our assumptions even further - beyond all reason and logic. Lets say all non-Muslims were evil and Islam was such a beautiful ideology that all those who did not convert deserved to be treated by inhumane brutality.

Lets forget what Muslims did to non-Muslims and examine what Arabs and Muslims did to each other. Not to any ordinary Al-Joe-ibn-ul-Bloggs Muslim but to the grand-son of the prophet, Hossein and his followers.

Hossein and seventy-two of his followers were trapped in Karbala, on the way to Kufeh. Not by Iranians or non-Muslims but by Arabs and Muslims themselves. In some cases members of the opposing sides were even related to each other!

Once again no man, woman or child was spared, not even six-month infants. The mother of Ali Asghar, Imam Hossein's six month-old child, requested the Imam to ask the Arabs and Muslims on the other side for some water as the infant had been thirsty for three days. The Imam held the child in his arms and brought him in front of the rival army. Instead of providing him with water, Hurmala bin Kahil on orders of Omar bin Sa'ad, shot the baby with an arrow, killing him in the arms of the prophet's grand-son.
The event of Karbala happened in 680 AD, more than a millennium before America existed!

To suggest that the brutality of Islamic militancy is the result of American and Western aggressive policies in the Middle East is just preposterous for those of us who are aware of the Islamic history and teachings.

On top of all this lets not forget there have been other nations who have suffered the aggression of rival nations. Lets start with Iran. Just because the Arabs invaded us and killed our people, did any Iranian ever decide to go and blast a bus full of innocent Arab women and children?

The people of Tibet have been subjugated to the aggression of the Chinese. Did anyone ever hear a Tibetan go to China and blow up a Chinese train and slay innocent Chinese civilians?

The people of East Europe were subjugated to the Soviet aggression and interference for most part of the second half of the twentieth century, can anyone give me examples of a Czech, Slovak, Pole, or a Hungarian who decided to blow up innocent Russian women and children in the Moscow underground in retaliation for the great injustice the people of East Europe suffered?

The Western Islamic apologists like Ken Livingston or the Trotskyist Lindsey German who utter out such nonsense to justify the action of suicide bombers are not just acting out of sheer ignorance on the subject matter, they are indeed playing a very dangerous game.

Friday, September 02, 2005

Remembering the Victims of 1988 Massacre

17 years have passed since the massacre of Iran's political prisoners, but the pain has not gone away. The subject is still taboo in the Iranian press and no official has yet been brought to justice.

Khavaran was one of the mass burial places of Iran's best sons and daughters. The bodies were accidentally discovered when an Armenian priest noticed stray dogs digging up for bones. Every year families of victims gather there with pictures of their loved ones, to mark the anniversary of a genocide that went unnoticed.

I too always remember my dear friend and class mate, Bizhan Bazargan, who was executed 8
years into his nine year sentence. His body was also never returned to his family and they were banned from holding a public wake.

Bizhan was brave as well as a genius. Even in his teenage years he never feared to stand up for what was right. His intellect impressed us all. I remember he wanted to be a medical doctor and he always used to study medical books. He would have been an asset not just for Iran but for mankind. Sadly the enemies of knowledge extinguished his light in his early years.

I always wonder how he looked at the moment of his death. I imagine him with the uncompromising look he had when he faced injustice. I imagine him roaring back in defiance at the cleric who asked him the two deciding questions, "Do you believe in Allah? Are you prepared to publicly renounce your past activities?"

Today, the families of the victims gathered at Khavaran with pictures of their loved ones and placed flowers on unmarked tombs. I too salute these intrepid sons and daughters of Iran, and during these days I think of Bizhan and the others.

Farewell my friend! sorry I couldn't be with you in your last fight against our adversaries... I will never forget our pact.

Sivand Dam Petition

Someone once told me petition is the weakest form of protest and I believe that. Nevertheless any protest is better than nothing when the cause is worthwhile. Since writing the piece on Sivand dam, a friend of mine sent me this link:
Lets all sign it, but lets not stop just at that.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Another Untouchable Islamic Cleric in Europe

After writing about the mysteries surrounding the alleged mastermind of the London bombings, Haroon Rashid Aswad, someone contacted me with information regarding another Islamic cleric who seems to be enjoying the protection of PC European statesmen.

The Islamic cleric is known as Mullah Krekar. In Kurdish "Krekar" means labourer or toiler. His real name however is Faraj Ahmad Najmuddin but he has used many other aliases as well. Born in 1956, Mullah Krekar was the head of the Jund- al-Islam, the precursor to Ansar-Islam in Iraqi Kurdistan. An extremist group similar to that of Taliban who for a while ruled parts of Iraqi Kurdistan according to strict Islamic rule.

Mullah Krekar was expelled from Holland but then seeked asylum in Norway. In Norway he became the darling of the Left and participated in peace marches. Presumably the Norwegian Left, like the rest of Europe, admired Krekar's "anti-American" stance and ignored his atrocities, implementation of Shariah law, repressive measures against women etc.

During his asylum in Norway, Mullah Krekar seemed to be free to travel around the world, even back to Northern Iraq, where he committed more crimes.
Yet whenever there was talk of legal action against Krekar, some of the left-wing politicians in Norway, defended him and asked for a halt to such witch-hunts. Several court cases against Krekar were dropped for lack of evidence or for fear of the mullah's life being in danger, if he is returned to Northern Iraq!
In other words its ok for Mullah Krekar to return to Northern Iraq and kill and torture more innocent victims, but heaven forbid if the Mullah's human rights are ever infringed.

In one instance, Krekar reported a female Muslim comedian, Shebana Rehman to the police for lifting him off the ground during a television programme. Rehman was subsequently pilloried for cultural insensitivity by several Norwegian commentators. Can you believe this??

So enough of the background on this Islamic militant turned into a European celebrity and the darling of the European Left, I think you get the picture. This is the information given to me by a person who met Krekar in Iraq. I will refer to this contact as 'K'.

'K', who is an Iranian Kurd, crossed over to the town of Biareh in Iraqi Kurdistan in 1999 to visit some of his family members. At the time Jund-al-Islam were ruling the town with their usual repressive measures. Ban on TV and pictures, burning of un-Islamic books, the Sharia law, all the usual Islamic restrictions were in place.
'K' told me however that on top of all these, Jund-al-Islam members spied on people inside their houses too. If a woman was not covering her hair, even inside her own home, the family were forced into paying fines and if the "crime" was repeated again they could even face losing their home.

'K' said he went to some of Mullah Krekar's sermons out of curiosity. He described Krekar as an able and fiery orator who could easily stir the passions of his audience. A very dangerous person who explicitly told his audience to kill the infidels.

'K' quoted Krekar as having said to his audience "if you kill just one non-believer, you will be rest assured of your place in paradise."

Apart from the celebrity status Mullah Krekar enjoys in Norway, he has also been provided with a council flat and receives benefit payments from the state. 'K' on the other hand, who was a secular student activist in Iran and fled the Ayatollahs, is still waiting for his refugee status after 5 years.

This is Europe gone mad. This madness can only stop if the European citizens break their indifference and put pressure on their politicians. The likes of Mullah Krekar and his followers are against the very fabric of the European society. The gutless European politicians who have warmed to these evil figures are cooking up a very deadly future for their citizens.