Sunday, July 03, 2011

'Do Not Become Arrogant, for Iran will Rear Many Like Me'

Most people in the West have heard of Leonidas and the battle of Thermopylae, but very few have heard of the Iranian commander, Ariobarzanes, and the way he resisted the invading army of Alexander at what became known as the battle of the Persian Gate. Following the Persian defeat at Gaugamela, it was left to Ariobarzanes to defend the Persian capital, Persepolis.

Alexander split his army and led 14000 of them towards Persepolis through the Persian Gates, the ancient name of a narrow pass way which connects Yassuj to Sedeh. There, Ariobarzanes along with his sister, Youtab and an army which numbered less than a thousand, managed to hold back Alexander's army by inflicting heavy casualties on Alexander's forces. Alexander finally outflanked and destroyed the defenders after a treacherous Iranian showed him a secret by-pass, through which Alexander could move his men.

Ariobarzanes, his sister, Youtab and his men fought to the very last and they became a legend in Iranian history and literature, symbols of Iranian patriotism.

Since the 1979 Islamic revolution however, the Islamic Republic has been hell bent on its anti-Iranian agenda. The regime fears all symbols of pre-Islamic Iran. In recent weeks, this anti-Iranian agenda has manifested itself in removing wall paintings that depicted the Epic stories of Shahnameh (Book of Kings) in Mashad, the removal of the statues of another Iranian legendary figure, Arash in Sari and now they want to remove the statue of Ariobarzanes in Yassuj.

The Revolutionary Guards, Commander of the province, Avaz Shahabifar and the local general prosecutor, Hojatol-Islam Moussavipour have claimed the statue of Ariobarzanes in Yassuj is an insult to the Islamic values and our war martyrs!!

This is why the picture of Yassuj youth above, surrounding the statute is so heartening in response to the threats to remove it. Iran's greatest poet, Ferdowsi who wrote the Book of Kings (Shahnameh) described Ariobarzanes's last words to Alexander in beautiful poetry which I will struggle to translate below:

'Know this Alexander
That after my death
You may be able to conquer the Persian gates
You may be able to put on the Persian crown
and sit on the Persian throne
But do not become arrogant
for Iran will rear many more like me'


Juniper in the Desert said...

What has happened to the Cyrus Cylinder, returned to Iran - but not its rightful inheritors! - by the British museum in London??

Does anyone know the whereabouts of this precious and iconic artifact?

Waybec said...

They're afraid of poets. They're afraid of words. They're afraid of voices. They're afraid of artists. They're afraid of Film-makers. They're afraid of women. They're afraid of justice. They're afraid of democracy. They're afraid of Human rights. They're afraid of the Internet. They're afraid of Westen Influence. And they're afraid now even within themselves. ...Now they're even afraid of symbols and afraid of history. Ha... No wonder then that ultimately they WILL ALL BECOME AFRAID OF THE PEOPLE! Azardi Irani...

Anonymous said...

and what has become of the many reared in/by Iran? Fuck all.

You're full of shit with your poetry and rhetoric. better suited to old wives club novels.

Anonymous said...

They removed Statue of Ferdowsi:

Anonymous said...

What a pack of lies!!!

Alexander The Great absolutely desimated the Persian army, again and again.

This sounds word for word like the Battle of Thermopylae, even to the point of a traitor who shows the invaders!

Face it my friend, Iran's history is insignificant and only exits in the history books because of amazing Greeks such as Leonidas and Alexander!