March 25 -- March 13 -- March 11 -- March 8


Have any idea how insulting that is?

On Behzad Ahandoost's photo essay, "Noruz in New York":

It really makes me happy and proud to see such events taking place in America. I was very disappointed and disturbed however, after seeing that so-called HAJI FEEROUZ character in the parade. Folks do you have any idea how insulting that is to the African American community? Let's just say a lot more insulting than a cartoon.

Look closely at one of the picture that shows an African American woman in shocked after seeing a white man who has painted his face black, wearing a silly costume and dancing like a clown. Just because something has been around for thousands of years doesn't mean it should be around for thousands of years to come. Other wise we should still slaughter a sheep every time we buy a new car!!

Afshin Mehrassa


Not exactly what we should be doing

On Behzad Ahandoost's photo essay, "Noruz in New York":

Could i just say one thing? i mean, it might be a little over board but, i think painting your face black and dancing and goofing off in the new york streets is not exactly what we should be doing regarding the history of prejudice towards the black people. then again, i try my best every day not to judge people.
that's all.

Sheila D

p.s. i hope this mail does not come angry to you as i am not mad at all. ok, maybe i'm mad but not angry, mad. had to clarify that since i'm usually mistaken by being pissed off or whatever :D


Trying my best not to hurt anyone

On Doug Soderstrom's "Love of war":

I must first say you have written a wonderful article and that if more people would come to the conclusion you have we would probably be a lot better off. Second, I have lived most of my years (I know I'm not that old, I'm 29) by what you have said. I came to the conclusion after being raised both in Islam as well as Christianity. I have tried to live my life trying my best not to hurt anyone and if I do then I do what I can to make amends. You are a very intelligent man (in my opinion) to have come to this point. Very few every do... lol. I think you know this as well from what you have said in your article. I wrote an article last year called 'Religious or Not' basically on the same subject. I hope more people will read this and realize where our idea does come from.



Kurds are as much, if not more, Iranian

On Kamal H. Artin's "One or four Kurdish states":

Dr. Artin,

I regularly read your Kurdish-nationalist writings. I am sympathetic to Kurdish nationalism, not just because I am part Kurdish, but because I think they deserve it and are entitled to it.

But this is where you begin to lose me: "The Kurdish dream of being free from the four colonial powers in the Middle East..."

I assume that when you speak of 4 colonial powers, you are not talking about the expansionism of Zionism, but Turkey, Syria, Iraq, and Iran, the countries in which sizeable Kurdish populations reside.

The Kurds are as much, if not more, Iranian then the rest of the inhabitants of Iran. They are among the founding peoples of Iran. Iran, meaning Aryan (a definite racist conotation if you ask me), is derived from the unity of the Aryan tribes of the Persians and Kurds, the people who founded Iran.

Thus, it is historically incorrect for the Kurds to refer to Iran as a colonial power and to want independence, as Iran is there's and of their creation.

The relationship between the Kurds and Iran is very different from the relationship between the Kurds and Iraq, Syria, and Turkey so please do not try to lump them together. Your articles are read by an informed audience and their holes do not pass without notice.

Pouya Alimagham


Kurdish federation or seperation

On Pouya Alimagham's "Kurds are as much, if not more, Iranian":

Thank you for your concern. I think if Kurdistan had a chance to seperate after Iranian Revolution, she could have helped free the rest of Iran too. Unfortunatley non-Kurdish right and left groups are united to make sure Kurdish deam does not come true, therefore Kurds from right and left should unite first within themselves, obtain their rights exactly as Persian, Turks and Arabs have it, and unite with them later based on equal right and opportunities.

Do not take me wrong, I love Persian culture and and heritgae more than many Persians who only have an emepty Aryan pride. My only point is that without statehoood, there is no way Kurds can be able to become equal in term of promoting their language, and heritage as well as makeing their homeland prosperous like many other parts in the Middle East.

I have seen many abused spouses have a very hard time to seperate becasue of rigidity of their society, yet they deserve to make choices. If I were you, I would have said, we have tried unity with any cost and it is time to try federation or seperation to see what will happen! Most likley the region will become more peaceful and democratic. You might see further details in: kaes.us/artin

Kamal H. Artin


Spelling NOWRUZ

Please try to unify spelling of  *** Nowruz *** as Dr. Ehsaan Yar e Shaater and UNESCO is using according to International Phonetic rules.

If you need I can send you all documents….

Houshang Pakpour


"Rahbare Nehzate Azadibakhshe Melate Iran"

Since many country like Italy has released some award to akbar ganji, it is very important for iranian people to give an title to his action. I suggest to give the title of "Rahbare Nehzate Azadibakhshe Melate Iran". Please be so kind to forward this message to proper address.



Only enemies of Iran can apply this word

On Sourena Mohammadi's photo essay, "Fire worshippers":

The pictures of Charshanbeh Souri you presented were very interesting. They prove that wherever Irarnians live, whether in Iran or outside, despite all adversities that these days they confront, are determned to preserve their heritage.

You have called the paticipants, "fire worshippers". This is an insulting word that for a period of 1400 years has been used against the Zoroastrians, who are true Iranians and despite all animosities have preserved their genuine heritage exactly as other Iranians are trying to do by celebrating Carshanbeh Souri and Nov Rooz. Only enemies of Iran can apply this word to their interested country men and women. I am sure that was not your intention because it has been utilized to despise the Nov Rooz festival and dicourage Iranians from celebrating that.

I hope in the future issue of Iranian.com you will correct that statement.

Daryoush Jahanian


More or less Iranians

On Daryoush Jahanian's letter, "Only enemies of Iran can apply this word":

Thanks for your nice comment about my pictures. I am glad you liked them.

I need to respond to the other comment you made in your e-mail about the title of the photos and the relationship between the rituals and Zoroastrian heritage.

First I have to mention that the title is not chosen by me, but by the editor, as it is common in the media world. So I am not responsible for that.

Secondly, my view on "Iranian-ness" (Irani boodan) is very different from yours. I love the Iranian culture and do my best to know it, document it, and present it to the world. I don't see it in the religious and ethnic terms. To me no Iranian is "true Iranian" as you mentioned in your e-mail.

Believing in the existence of certain "true Iranians" leads to believing in the existence of some "less-Iranian" citizens of Iran, which I absolutely denounce. To me this type of looking at the subject comes from "Khodi-Gheyrekhodi" mentality that is dangerous for Iran and its hopefully democratic future.

To me Zoroastrians are as much Iranian as the Arabs of Khouzestan and the Turkemans of the North-East. Being Iranian to me is not a matter of religion or ethnicity. It is about sharing a common culture that is shaped though the ages by mixing different traditions into a unique culture that is not any of them but definitely has a taste from every one of them.

Let me put it this way: I think the title is chosen metaphorically. It doesn't mean that the people there are fire-worshippers. But even if it suggests that, (or let's say even if such a people as fire-worshippers exist in Iran) I don't think we should care about it. Iranians, either fire-worshipper or Muslim or anything else should be respected by the other Iranians. Who cares what they believe in? What we need to care about is their freedom of expressing their beliefs.

Sourena Mohammadi


I've fallen in love with the house

On Jahanshah Javid's photo essay, "New year, new bonds":

Thanks for sharing these photos. I've fallen in love with the house in the photos. Whoever decorated it must be an artist or have an artistic flair. From the flowers to the garden to the paintings, everything is so beautiful, yet unassuming. Best of all, it reminded me of Iran with its sweet, "khaki" way.

My kudos to your friend/family who owns the house. BTW, if he/she is an artist could you give me his/her name? I would love to look up his/her work.



Complements to the hosts

On Jahanshah Javid's photo essay, "New year, new bonds":

Thanks for your great photos of your Norooz celebration. It made me wish I was in such a gorgeous home - full of fruit, flowers, great decor, and even greater looking food! My complements to the host(ess?)!

I wanted to ask for your permission to link some of these Norooz pictures to my blog. You inspired me to take some of my own photos of spring around me, and I'd like to do an entry about the new season!

Eid-eh shomah mobarak,

Bazmeh Davoudian


Oh dear!

On Jahanshah Javid's photo essay, "New year, new bonds":

Oh dear! I read this title of yours... NOROOZ: New year, new bonds ... and I thought it said "New year, new bombs".

(Revealing my anxiety about the neocons...)

David D


6 years in enferaadi

On the danger of answering this quiz, "Contemporary Haft-Seen":

Winning this one = 6 years in enferaadi. No thanx.



Boycott Muslim products

Respected Brother/Sister,

You all heard what those magazines in Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Egypt, and Iran have published.

It's making fun of our beloved democracy by mob violence and false accusations of "Islamaphobia".  Moreover, they refused to apologize because they considered it a practice of their love of their prophet to override the rights of the 5 billion NonMuslims worldwide. We ask you all to put your hands together with other NonMuslims and boycott Muslim products. 5 billion NonMuslims could really slap the economy of Muslim countries.

Please reply and suggest us how we can unite in this HOLY ASSIGNMENT

Miss Magoo


Bahais distraction

On Bahai World News: "UN Religious Freedom Official expresses fears for Bahais in Iran":

I was dismayed to read about the new anti Bahai activities in Iran. It would be nice if we, as Iranians, show support for the Bahais of Iran by starting petitions to the political leaders in Iran, U.S. and Europe as well as the U.N. and demand a stop to this activity. A lot was done for 1 person, Akbar Ganji. Lets see if we show the same compasssion for tens of thousands of innocent people.

From the time of Falsafi, 60 years ago, until today, every time the Iranian government needs a common enemy for distraction of the masses, they use Bahais. I guess Bahais make a better target than Americans.

Los Angeles


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