The burnt generation
Gap between official slogans and people's perception
of the state
By Amir Azar & Mehrzad Pedram
November 9, 2003
It's 9 a.m. in the
morning on November 4th and I'm leaving home because I've got
a job lined up. By the
look of it, there's something wrong in Tehran. The
main roads have been blocked off and people have set
out to move on foot. No, no.... not
to attend a mass rally in support of Student's Day.
Most of the roads have
been obstructed due to the rally and people have no means
of transpiration other their own feet.
Students standing around in groups grab
my attention. These are the ones for whom "Student's
been coined. These are the
very adolescents of eminent good sense who are forced to rush
out into the streets and attend a rally. They are the ones whose
unawareness of the whole affair -- the political manipulations
in particular -- is being exploited.
It reminds me of an incident a couple of years
ago. I was a
high school student.
I still remember how we felt compelled to take part in a
planned demonstration against imagined imperialist, racist and
powers. If we had not
attended, we would not have gotten full marks under the strict
code of conduct at school.
We had nothing
to do with politics and its manipulations. We spared no effort
to stay away from the rally and go for a stroll somewhere far
school. To us, the rally was
an object of ridicule, so instead of shouting "down with
Israel", we called out "down
So many years have gone by in this rapidly
changing world. It seems worthwhile to say that individuals
who rolled up their sleeves to chant anti-American slogans at
that very moment are now chasing peace and prosperity
in the U.S. It seems crazy; it's a bitter pill
Stuffing the youth of yesterday with those crazy
anti-American slogans has had dire and serious consequences.
These days when students
take to the streets, they chant anti-government slogans.
These are not the ploys devised
by the U.S. and its allies, but the spill-over effects of a regime
that sides with bloodshed, genocide, assassination and murder.
Yes, your guess is as good as mine. They are the
burnt generation awaiting an opportunity
to take to the streets to express their
disapproval of their spiritual leadership's aggressive policies.
They will take to the streets not against the "ruthless"
the racist Zionist regime in Israel, but against mullahs who
have been plundering
and looting Iranians lock, stock and barrel for years.
Ignorance, obsession, and hatred, plus addiction,
prostitution, torture and imprisonment and a grab bag of plights
are among the innumerable "achievements" of these 25
years for which our
leaders feel proud of; they stand upright
with their noses in the air.
safeguard its corrupt entity, this government has retracted
its revolutionary stance whenever a major challenge
posed to its vulnerable stability. Signing the additional protocol
the non-proliferation treaty
(NPT) was the
latest embarrassing retreat.
November 4th marks the occupation of the American
embassy in Tehran. It's exactly 24 years since that tragic incident
place. It is not something to be proud of, instead
we should be embarrassed.
The folks who climbed the embassy walls
in fury, are now feeling shame. Some are even behind bars
of a government they once defended. Abbas Abdi is a shining
Times have changed. No one gives
a fig to official demonstrations. There is no doubt young
people today are well aware of the credibility gap between what
holders of power say and what they do. They are acutely aware
they are poles apart.
I remember a question raised by a
twelve-year-old student of mine in language school. It read:
"Do you like a country where there are loads
and loads of mullahs?" For the average person, that's
what the problem has been reduced to.
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