The Iranian Times

Thursday July 15 1999 / Tir 24, 1378, No. 769

Sehaty Foreign Exchange



Now what?
Three possibilities following the student protests

By Mark J. Gasiorowski
July 15, 1999
The Iranian

I think Ayatollah Khamenei certainly cannot sit back and play on the dissatisfaction that has emerged. Even if the student demonstrators are crushed in the next few days, Khamenei and the conservatives now have a major problem on their hands. If they do not make major concessions to the students' demands, the unrest that we have seen in the last few days will almost certainly reemerge, and it may well spread beyond the universities. If so, the conservatives will be forced to rely increasingly on repression, transforming the populist Islamic regime that has existed since the revolution into an Islamic dictatorship. This may work in the short term, but in the long term I believe it is simply not viable. Iran is not China, and the Tienanmen Square approach just will not work there ... GO TO FEATURE

Also see pro-Khamenei photos



One of the more interesting aspects of the recent uphival in Iran is the reaction of the moderates who pulled their support from the students once their protests got angrier. Here's a letter from a student to the editor of the daily Neshat criticizing the editor for accusing the students of being "illogical" ... FULL TEXT

Thanks to Laleh Khalili

Remembering one of the students killed at the dorms

Tehran, (Neshat) - Ezzatollah Ebrahim-Nezhad was one of the students killed at the Tehran University dorms last week. He was a friend of the poet Ali Salehi, and a bit of a poet himself... a gentle soul ... FULL TEXT



A young, educated, Iranian girl needs your help. She is in the middle of a divorce because her husband and mother-in-law abuse her constantly. The judge has ruled in her favor. At the moment she works part-time as a cashier. She needs a room in someone's house for couple of months until she can find a full time job. She can pay about $100- $150 rent and can help with the household. She is in Silver Spring, Maryland, but if someone offers her a job and room she can move. If anyone can help please contact me ASAP.

Thank you

Simin Habinian

More Letters

* Two steps back

Sepehr Sohrab writes: We are born as Iranians not by our own choice. However what we do as Iranians is (our choice). As much as we are proud of our culture, let us make sure by our deeds and not rhetoric about the past, we preserve what we have inherited. How great is Iran depends on how Iranians present it.

With all the events going on in Iran these days it seem we are in competition with the Taleban ["The spark"]. The policy of one step forward, two steps back, leaves us with losing even what we had. And losing lives is always backward, specially when the subject is: "FREEDOM TO EXPRESS".

* Helping MKO types

G.H. Razi writes: Perhaps President Khatami thought that he had no other choice in the circumstances, and I certainly wish him the best since he may still be the last hope for a relatively peaceful transition to a more tolerable political system in Iran.

Incidentally, I have never criticized him openly and have urged other nationalists and moderates who may pay any attention to me not to do so either. But his present position and predicament and the students' mood may result in their further alienation and tendency toward radicalism and support for the likes of the MKO.

I still hope otherwise and think that there may be time to take some meaningful remedial steps. But they require courage and a significant amount of risk taking ... FULL TEXT

* Who's there to lead?

Ardeshir Derazdast writes: Question is, does the West want to remove the Islamic Republic? Would they gain by removing them? And if they do, who is to replace them? Few hundred or thousand student demonstrators could not do anything if they don't have any support behind them. Is there anyone to lead them?

We should not expect a revoluion or a change with six days of riots, if no one is there for them, to lead them to organize them. Today is not 1978. The Shah had to go and they brought Khomeini out of nowhere, and made him a god. A man who could not even speak proper Farsi and all his sentences were backwards just like his regime, became a supreme leader and god of the Iranians, and removed the Shah with all that power ... FULL TEXT

* Rallies: Gatherings in U.S. in support of student movement

- Houston: Saturday July 17, 4-7 pm, Old Market Park Junction of Travis and congress (downtown). Information: (713) 266-6688
- New York: Tuesday July 20, from 9-11 am, United Nations.
- London: Friday July 16, 3 pm, Iranian Embassy, Princess Gate, Kensington Information: (181) 998-6485
- Bonn, Germany: Saturday July 17, 10 am - 6 pm, Bad-Godesberger Allee, Bad-Godesberg.
- Dallas:
Thursday July 15, 7-8 pm, Golden Room of Fairmont Hotel, Ackard Avenue, downtown.
- Berkeley: Saturday July 17, 4:00 - 6:00 pm, intersection of Telegraph and Bancroft, University of California Berkeley. Gathering called by The Committee for Freedom of Thought and Expression in Iran (Northern California) ... MORE CITIES

Book of the Week

The Stone
A Persia Legend of the Magi

By y Dianne Hofmeyr, Jude Daly (Illustrator)

This exquisitely illustrated story spins anew the famous tale of the Magi. It is a retelling of the Persian legend, as told to Marco Polo in the 13th century, whereupon three astronomers, Jasper, Melchior, and Balthasar, who are also healers and holy men, follow a bright star in the sky to witness the birth of a king. Upon greeting the child, the three men present gifts of gold, incense, and myrrh. The child accepts their gifts, but also endows the three men with his own offeringa stone. It proves to be a solid symbol of belief that gives off a fervor of fire. Daly's illustrations perfectly capture the arid landscapes and the starry night sky, and her intriguing perspectives and inventive use of the page combine ancient, simplified forms with more elegant lines. The book has broad appeal, giving a fresh new shape and texture to a familiar story -- Kirkus Reviews ... GO TO BOOK

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More news

Three opposition leaders detained in Iran: opposition group

BRUSSELS, July 14 (AFP) - At least three Iranian opposition leaders were arrested at their homes in Iran early Wednesday, a representative of the Brussels-based opposition National Party told AFP. "Several leaders of the opposition were arrested last night by the secret police in their homes," Mehran Adib said. He identified them as People's Party members Bahran Namazi, Mehran Mir Abdol Baghi and Rosrow Seyf. Adib said police searched their homes and seized books, letters and newspapers.

Iran says unrest over; big rally backs state

TEHRAN, Iran (Reuters) - Iran said Wednesday its security forces had contained in a crisis caused by some the worst unrest since the 1979 revolution, hours after tens of thousands of people rallied in support of the Islamic government. ``After setting up a crisis headquarters ... and following the crisis minute by minute, and thanks to the national resolve which has developed, the crisis has been brought under control,'' said Interior Minister Abdolvahed Mousavi-Lari ... FULL TEXT

Protesters dragged away

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) -- Pro-democracy student protesters were tied hand-and-foot and dragged from a huge rally called by Iranian hard-liners, the Neshat daily reported today. The newspaper quoted Ali Afshari, a leader of weeklong pro-democracy demonstrations, as saying that the whereabouts of several of his fellow students were not known, the newspaper said ... FULL TEXT

Iran clergy face further problems with youth

TEHRAN, July 14 (Reuters) - Iran's ruling clergy appear to have survived the country's worst social unrest since the 1979 Islamic revolution, but many believe the calm belies deep social and economic troubles and general discontent, especially among the youth. ``This was a warning, a spark which ignited a wave of discontent among the poor, the unemployed and angry and frustrated youngsters,'' said Nasser, a university graduate who drives a cab for a living ... FULL TEXT

E.U. appeals for end to violence in Iran

July 15, Helsinki (dpa) - The European Union (E.U.) appealed on Thursday to all groups in Iran to ``refrain from all kind of violence''. A statement issued in Helsinki by the current Finnish presidency of the union said the E.U. ``has followed with concern the reaction of police and security forces to the course of events related to student demonstrations which started on July 8 in Teheran and which have spread to other cities ... FULL TEXT

Five Iranian writers win awards

New York, July 14, 1999 (Human Rights Watch) -- Of the thirty-two grant recipients of this year's Hellman/Hammett grants, five hail from Iran. They are Hamid-Reza Jalei-Pour, Masahallah Shamss-Ol-Vaezin, Seyeed Ebrahim Nabvi, Akbar Ganji and Hojatolesam Mohssen Saeidzadeh. The grant program began in 1989 when the estates of American authors Lillian Hellman and Dashiel Hammett asked Human Rights Watch to design a program for writers in financial need as a result of expressing their views ... FULL TEXT

Iran's oil sector immune to unrest for now

LONDON, July 15 (Reuters) - Scarred by war and revolution, Iran's strategic oil sector appears undisturbed so far by shockwaves from the country's worst social unrest in years. And barring a dramatic worsening of political tensions, the industry is likely to be protected by a broad consensus on the need to develop the country's most valuable resource, Iranian and foreign experts say ... FULL TEXT

Writers union takes a stand

Tehran, (Neshat) - The Iranian writers union has issued a statement condemning the attack on students. This is one of the first political statements by the grup since it was officially recognized a few months ago ... FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN

Zhazeh active as ever

Tehran, (Neshat) - Contemporary artist Zhazeh Tabatabaie never seems to stop creating magnificent art. He has just published a book of drawings "Shir zan-haa va khorsheed khanoom-haaye Zhazeh" (Zhazeh's linonesses and lady suns) ... FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN

Vahid Hashemian speaks his mind

Tehran, (Neshat) - A candid interview with the 23-year-old member of the Iranian national team and Iran's recent export to the German soccer league ... FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN

17 Million Toman Man

Tehran, (Neshat) - Hot striker Ahmad Momen-Zadeh's contract with Sepahan has been sold to Persepolis for a cool 17 million tomans. PLUS Persepolis has agreed to lend Sepahan 100 million tomans ... FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN

Mir-Mohammadi dreams in German

Tehran, (Neshat) - Ebrahim Mir-Mohammadi only recently joined the national soccer team as a defender. He's happy in Iran. but he says he would be happier in Germany - if he's invited ... FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN


BBC Persian online debate

Join in and listen to the live debate on the students protests, On Friday July 16th, from 0945 to 1045 GMT. Send the BBC Persian Service your messages now or call them at 0044 171 240 48 33 to have your opinions included ... GO HERE

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Quote Unquote


The student movement has a genuine character; it has a true and clear identity and feels it has its reasons for protesting.

-- Defence Minister Ali Shamkhani
July 14, 1999

Photo of the Day

Khamenei = Khomeini


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