The Iranian Times

Friday August 18, 2000 / Mordad 28, 1379, No. 1046


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Flower delivery in Iran

Iranian books


Free elections, 1979
My last audience with the Shah

By Fereydoun Hoveyda
August 18, 2000
The Iranian

The Shah kept silent for a short moment... A servant came in with a tray on which were a medicine flagon and a glass of water. The Shah bolted a pill. Then he leant against the back of his seat and spoke in a very soft voice, as if he were gathering wool: "The time is coming for me to withdraw. I have served the nation to the best of my ability and I think that I have done a lot of positive things. All foreign leaders admire our achievements. The country is ready for democracy. I have the intention of giving to Iranians the freedom of expression and all other liberties >>> GO TO FEATURE


We must lie
To survive

Shahriar Zahedi
August 18, 2000
The Iranian

On the customs of Persians, Herodotus writes: "Their sons are carefully instructed from their fifth to their twentieth year, in three things alone---to ride, to draw the bow, and to speak the truth. The most disgraceful thing in the world, they think, is to tell a lie; the next worst, to owe a debt: because, among other reasons, the debtor is obliged to tell lies."

So it is safe to assume that there once existed among the Persians, a certain preoccupation with honesty and truthfulness and maybe that was a part of what set them apart from other ancient peoples and contributed to their rise and glory in the olden days.

But then what happened? >>> GO TO FEATURE


By Mohandes
August 18, 2000
The Iranian


1953 coup: Forty-seven years ago today

BBC Persian Service

Forty-seven years ago there was a military coup in Iran which changed the course of its development for the next 25 years. Much has been said about how the coup was carried out. Maria Sarsalari has been talking to people connected to the coup or know about it >>> LISTEN HERE

The collapsing of Iranian reform
With hardliners in the ascendant, Muhammad Khatami's bid to reform the clerical system from within has succeeded only in minor social ways

The Economist
August 19, 2000

SIX months ago a loose grouping of reformists, committed (at least by local standards) to the rule of law and democratic accountability, won Iran's parliamentary election. The future looked uncertain but promising. Even though the conservatives still controlled all the effective instruments of state power -- the judiciary, the police, the army, the broadcast media -- it was fair to hope they would feel obliged to pay heed to the strength of the people's voice. So they did; but only to shut it up >>> FULL TEXT

Fast Iranian

By Jacki Lyden
The Washington Post
August 13, 2000,

RESTAURANT REVIEW: "Call me Ishmael," I said to my friend Jahanshah, "and I'll call you Queequeg." We had just entered one of my favorite holes-in-the-wall in Washington, the Moby Dick House of Kabob. Why the name Moby Dick? Avast, seafarer, I'll keep you in suspense for a moment on that one. Let's just say that when an Iranian restaurateur started Washington's Moby Dick chain in 1989, he was building on one of the legends of Tehran, not Herman Melville's tale of the whale >>> FULL TEXT

    Boxing ring

    International Haftegi: Velayat-e Faqih's firepower and freedom >>> FULL PERSIAN TEXT

    (Kayhan or Jomhouri Eslami could not be accessed today)


I love you
NOW will you publish my article?

It's not easy getting published. ESPECIALLY in The Iranian. So people try all sorts of tricks. Sometimes they work >>> SEE HERE

Thanks to Mohandes

More Letters

* This isn't a joke

Jokestan's Self Appointed Board of Directors writes: In response to Mr. Hossein Tabrizi's letter, "Racist jokes", we are very happy to know that there are people with your point of view out there. Your criticism towards opens doors to a vast spectrum of social problems/crisis within the Iranian society. Frankly, it is hard to find a starting point for this issue.

We think you would agree with us that many jokes have roots in ethnicity and this is not restricted to Iran. English jokes against French and vice versa, Polish jokes, Red Neck (Southerner) jokes, Mexican jokes, Italians, Jewish, etc. are all examples of ethnic humor and reflection of the fact that no matter why, humor is related to ethnicity. Interestingly enough, a good portion of these jokes are created by people belonging to the very same ethnic background.

In Iran, ethnic jokes have a long history and was not invented by Shahanshah . These anecdotes go back at least 700 years to Obeyd-Zakani jokes. The subject of these jokes are Ghazvinis, Turks, Esfahanis, Khorasanis, Turkmans, Arabs, and even Coptics! Believe it or not, Obeyd's work should be considered as one of the more recent works of Iranians on the subject of humor. Definitely there are older sources that are not available to us for reference.

Ethnic jokes are everywhere. Apparently, people take pleasure in teasing and making fun of each other. But, to what extreme? Why have Iranians pushed the limit so far?>>> FULL TEXT

* Iranian hospitality

Shervan writes: I really enjoyed your article "Amazed" by Doug Biesecker and "One planet, one people" by Alan Hale in your August 17, 2000 issue.

It made me very proud to see once again, the hospitality of our people in Iran, from small towns to the big cities despite of all the hardship of day to day life in today's Iranian society still impresses our guests.

Iran is a country filled with rich culture and history and it is a shame that non-Iranians would only see and remember the horrific images of hostages and protesters. In their mind men and women are running around in black chadors and turbans attacking locals and visitors in the streets and it is not a safe place to go for your hard earned vacation or research! >>> FULL TEXT

Film: Kiarostami film in Falls Church, MD

Monday, August 21 at 7:30 at Falls Church High School. (I-495, Rte. 50 E, turn right on Jaguar Trail). Film: "Safar". Screenplay by Abbs Kiarostami. Directed by Raissian.




Milton's Christmas
By Hayde Ardalan


Jonbesh-e daaneshjooi-ye Iran az aaghaaz taa enqelaab-e eslaami
By Emaeddin Baghi

Music store


Translation of today's poem by Zara Houshmand:

Give me the gift to blend and bond with a friend.

Give me the brains to stay away from love.

Give me the strength to challenge my own fate.

Give me the feet to walk from this tangled state.
-- Rumi
Previous translations

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More news

Friday prayer cleric accuses US of trying to topple regime

TEHRAN, Aug 18 (AFP) - The United States is trying to topple the Islamic regime in Iran just as it did with the communists in the former Soviet Union, a leading conservative cleric charged on Friday. Ayatollah Ahmad Janati accused Washington of supporting pro-reform elements in the media that he said had waged a disinformation campaign against the clerical regime >>> FULL TEXT

MKO says Iranian forces shell one of its Iraq camps

DUBAI, Aug 18 (AFP) - The Iraq-based armed Iranian opposition said that one of its camps in southern Iraq had come under mortar attack by Iranian forces in the early hours of Friday morning, causing no casualties in the camp, but with some mortars landing on nearby civilian areas. "Revolutionary Guards and the clerical regime's terrorists crossed international borders and attacked with 120mm mortars the National Liberation Army's Camp Habib," said a statement by the People's Mujahedeen received by AFP >>> FULL TEXT

Israel says Iran pressing militants to attack

JERUSALEM, Aug 18 (Reuters) - Israel's Deputy Defence Minister Ephraim Sneh accused Iran on Friday of encouraging Islamic militants to launch wide-scale attacks against Israel. Sneh's remarks followed a U.S. State Department warning on Wednesday that there was "an increased possibility for terrorist attacks" and advising Americans to avoid use of public buses and act with caution in crowded areas >>> FULL TEXT

US arrests man wanted in Argentina bombing

WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. agents have arrested a Pakistani man who Argentine sources say is wanted for questioning in the bombings of the Israeli Embassy in Buenos Aires in 1992 and of a Jewish cultural center there in 1994. An Immigration and Naturalization Service spokeswoman, Nancy Cohen, confirmed on Friday the arrest in Los Angeles of Mohammad Abass Malik, on grounds that he was in the United States without proper documentation. Cohen had no additional information on the man >>> FULL TEXT

Amnesty urges U.S. to stop 'cruel' executions

LONDON (Reuters) - Amnesty International appealed to the United States on Friday to stop the execution of Alexander Williams, a mentally ill prisoner who was 17 at the time of his crime. Scheduled to go to the electric chair in Jackson, Georgia next Thursday, Williams, now 31, would be the fifth child offender to be executed in the United States this year, more than in any other year since 1954, Amnesty said in a statement >>> FULL TEXT

Iran decries heavy domestic oil product consumption

TEHRAN, Aug 17 (Reuters) - Iran's consumption of oil products exceeds international norms by an order of 10, forcing it to import six million litres of gasoline per day, the official IRNA news agency said on Thursday. IRNA quoted deputy oil minister Ali Aqababaei as saying average daily consumption of oil products was estimated at 46 million litres, enough to put the country on a par with India, which has more than 12 times the population >>> FULL TEXT

Women in TV police drama series

Tehran (Jam-e Jam) -- State TV is producing a series about "the active participation of women" in the police force >>> FULL PERSIAN TEXT

Acting & smoking

Tehran (Jam-e Jam) -- Siamak Ashariyoun is a veteran actor who has performed in numerous films and TV series. His most difficult role was playing a drug smuggler who was a smoker "because I don't smoke." >>> FULL PERSIAN TEXT

Dream interpretation

Tehran (Iran daily) -- The oldest and most popular texts about dream interpretation were written centuries ago by Ibn Sirin, Daniel the Prophet, and of course Sheikh Bahai. Their collected thoughts on the subject has been reprinted >>> FULL PERSIAN TEXT

Iranians lose to American ball players

Tehran (Ettelaat) -- The U.S. "Global" (college?) basketball team defeated the Iranian national team in international matches in Tehran >>> FULL TEXT

Brazilian coaches awaiting visas

BRASILIA, August 17: Ademar da Silva Braga and his assistant Manoel Henrique Pereira Coutinho are expected to arrive in Tehran in the next few weeks to join the Iranian National Team coaching staff >>> FULL TEXT

Slow (sports) news day

Tehran (Ettelaat) -- There has been much happening in sports today. But here's something interesting, sorta >>> FULL TEXT


Taliban: No Olympic team

The International Olympic Committee says it has rejected a last minute appeal by Afghanistan's Taleban movement to be allowed to send a team to the Sydney Olympics next month. The IOC says it has told Taleban that their team cannot participate because the Taleban administration is not internationally recognised. Pam O'Toole reports >>> LISTEN HERE

BBC Persian Service

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Updated August 16

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Selling: 822 to 828 tomans per dollar

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Aashti Melli

Promotes national reconciliation not in Iran, but among Iranian oppsition groups abroad.

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Final meal

You are about to be executed in a few hours. What would you like as your final meal?

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Quote Unquote

Smarter than Spaniards

At the end of the term of the present parliament free elections would be organized with the participation of candidates from all parties. In the summer of 1979. And I would empower as prime minister the head of the winning party or coalition according to the Constitution. Our people are not less educated and able than the Spanish!

-- Mohammad Reza Shah
"Free elections, 1979"
The Iranian
August 18, 2000

Photo of the Day

Iranian ambassafor with former U.S. officials



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Selim Nazerian
Darakeh village