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.

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