The Iranian Times

Tuesday August 22, 2000 / Shahrivar 1, 1379, No. 1048


Sprint Long Distance

Access & Arts

Sehaty Foreign Exchange

Flower delivery in Iran

Iranian books


Poignant disorder
Iran's infinite risks and possibilities

By Gelareh Asayesh
August 22, 2000
The Iranian

I think of Iran as primitive in a different sense, in the sense of being closer to God, man and nature. Here in Iran, everything is broken pavement, weeds growing in an atmosphere of infinite risk and possibility. Faith and myth are part of the fabric of daily living. Simple people stop in their tracks to pray when the muazzin's call to prayer drifts from the mosques. Sophisticated people believe in miracles. ("Have you heard of the Blind Shaykh?" a beautifully coiffed relative asks a country acquaintance over tea one afternoon. "I hear he can divine where stolen jewelry is hidden.")

Such innocence is rare in the country where I make my home. I must bring my daughter halfway across the world to experience it >>> GO TO FEATURE


City of two hundred roses
"This is where you sleep"

By Farnoosh Moshiri
August 22, 2000
The Iranian

Khan-Baba had let one of his rooms to this high school girl -- a girl whose face I never saw. She was alone by her own in the city of Raz. The old couple said she was from the capital, where I was from. She had lost her virginity there. She had taken a lover, as young as she was. Her parents banished her, sent her to Raz to die, to become a prostitute, or to survive. So far she had survived, they said. Good people hoped she would survive the rest. Mean people hoped she would end up on the dirt road of the gas city, the alley of the prostitutes. She used the back door of the house. She went to school until four o'clock and sang the rest of the time >>> GO TO FEATURE


Sahabi released on bail

BBC Persian Service

Ezatollah Sahabi, managing director of the banned magazine Iran-e Farda, who was earlier arrested by the revolutionary court for his participation in the Berlin Conference, is released on bail. Daryoush Homai talks to Mr Sahabi >>> LISTEN HERE

Iran facing drought disaster: UN

GENEVA, Aug 22 (AFP) - Iran is facing disaster if more is not done quickly to help some 37 million people hit by the worst drought there for more than 30 years, UN agencies warned Tuesday.

People urgently need drinking water and many have lost their livestock or crops as a result of the drought, UN expert Vladimir Sakharov told reporters here >>> FULL TEXT

Khatami defends democracy as core ``value''

By Jonathan Lyons

TEHRAN, Aug 22 (Reuters) - Iranian President Mohammad Khatami reaffirmed his commitment to democracy on Tuesday and dismissed charges by conservatives that reformers were soft on religious and revolutionary values.

Khatami, a mid-ranking Shi'ite Moslem cleric, used the second part of a taped television interview to assert the defence of democratic rights as an important ``value'' in its own right>>> FULL TEXT

Upturn in Iran may aid Khatami

By Guy Dinmore
Financial Times
August 22, 2000

With Iran's economy climbing out of recession on the back of higher world prices for oil, President Mohammad Khatami could be in the happy position of overseeing a strong upturn as he prepares to stand for re-election next year.

Expectations are running high in the country, where more than 12m people struggle below the official poverty line, that living standards will improve for the first time in years >>> FULL TEXT

Iran wants to improve prison conditions

August 22, 2000
Deutsche Presse-Agentur

Teheran (dpa) - Iran wants to improve the prison conditions, the official news agency IRNA reported Tuesday.

``We are still far beyond the social and humane principles and the prisons need an overhaul since a prisoner is a human who should be corrected,'' Judiciary Chief Ayatollah Mahmud Hashemi-Shahroudi was quoted by IRNA as saying >>> FULL TEXT

High times

You don't need any alaf to get high on Moby's "Porcelain" >>> LISTEN HERE

From the "Play" CD

More Letters

* Seeking justice against sexual harassment

Marjan writes: I am an Iranian medical doctor. I began practicing as an MD in 1985 in Iran. Then I left and came to the U.S., where my problem began. I am writing for help from Iranians who can assist me.

What happened to me at the University of Nebraska Medical Center was an obvious case of gross discrimination against me as a woman and as an Iranian. The program director took sexual advantage of me.

Many people, when they hear about sexual harassment, automatically think, "Oh, she's just trying to make money." I swear to everything I believe in that I don't want any money. All I want is justice >>> FULL TEXT

* Dreams do come true

Shahin Rezai writes: Googoosh's concert in Los Angeles started at nine o'clock with the band entering the stage. They started with "Talaagh" which is one of my all time favorites. Who can forget her in that white dress with Farah Fawcett's hair-do in the original video? The band played the tune and the crowed screamed. Then there was a moment of silence. The lights went out. Five seconds later there was a beam of light and Googoosh was standing in the middle of the stage with her head down.

Bigger than life. That's the only way to describe Googoosh. God; is it real? Please tell me the good old days will return soon. Oh wait it's too soon for that; let's just enjoy the show. The crowd went absolutely nuts. They screamed and cried and clapped and cheered and she stayed silent and still for about a minute. Maybe she was saying a prayer, maybe she was thanking about God, or maybe this was just part of the show. I don't know but whatever it was, it was just right >>> FULL TEXT

Rights: Amnesty of non-documented immigrants in the US

Online petition: "Campaign for General Amnesty" for non documented immigrants in the US hosted on the web by, a free online petition service >>> GO HERE




Parkinson's Disease
A Self-Help Guide by Marjan Jahanshahi


Dar khesht-e khaam
Ehsan Naraghi's interview with satirist Ebrahim Nabavi

Music store


Translation of today's poem by Zara Houshmand:

By nature hard as stone, with a heart of steel,

Your stone and steel throw fiery sparks at me.

Moon of Khotan, flaming stone, I'd be an ass

To lay my heart down now in this dry grass.
-- Rumi
Previous translations

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Opposition figure released from detention

TEHRAN, Aug 22 (AFP) - Opposition figure Ezatollah Sahabi, who was detained in Tehran after he returned from a controversial conference in Berlin in April, has been released pending trial, state radio said Tuesday. The Iranian judicial system decided the conference was "anti-Islamic," after some participants attacked Iran's Islamic regime for press censorship and political repression >>> FULL TEXT

Prominent reformist journalist placed in solitary confinement

TEHRAN, Aug 22 (AFP) - Reformist journalist Mashallah Shamsolvaezin jailed in April for "hurting Islam" has been placed in solitary confinement, his wife said cited by the press here Tuesday. "We were informed by other detained friends that Shamsolvaezin has been transfered to an individual prison cell since Sunday, but we do not know why," his wife said cited by the Hayate-No paper >>> FULL TEXT

Section of the press blasts Khatami from all sides over TV interview

TEHRAN, Aug 22 (AFP) - Iranian President Mohammad Khatami came under fire Tuesday from both the reformist and conservative press a day after a televised interview led by reporters from the state media. Papers charged Khatami, who in Monday's interview condemned the wholesale closure of newspapers by the courts, had contradicted his support for the press by having only three journalists present to ask questions >>> FULL TEXT

Iran sending Jewish MP on official delegation for first time

TEHRAN, Aug 22 (AFP) - Islamic Iran is for the first time sending its Jewish MP abroad as part of an official delegation going to the United Nations next week, a Tehran newspaper reported on Tuesday. Maurice Motamed will be part of the delegation led by parliamentary speaker Mehdi Karubi to attend a conference of world parliament leaders, the Iran News said >>> FULL TEXT

Report: Bin Laden group growing

WASHINGTON (AP) - The terror network headed by multimillionaire Saudi-born fugitive Osama bin Laden is steadily eclipsing Iran and other Middle East countries in sponsoring terrorist attacks, Congress' research arm reports. Major factions in Iran are trying to change the country's image, and Sudan and Libya appear to have reduced sharply their support of international terrorism, the report said. Also, it said, Syria may be ready to expel such groups once peace is established with Israel >>> FULL TEXT

Parliament mulling ways to boost foreign investment

TEHRAN, Aug 22 (AFP) - Iran's reformist parliament held a closed-door session Tuesday to discuss ways of lowering the barriers to foreign investment in the Islamic republic, sources told AFP. Economy Minister Hossein Namazi, Intelligence Minister Ali Yunessi and central bank chief Mohsen Nourbakhsh were among the participants but there were no further details available on the session, they said >>> FULL TEXT

Doom and gloom among carpet makers as Tehran fair opens

TEHRAN, Aug 22 (AFP) - Carpets from across Iran went on show at Tehran's ninth carpet fair Tuesday, but exporters were gloomy about the future of the country's most famous craft in the face of bureaucratic obstacles and competition from inferior foreign products. A total of 130,000 precious carpets from all 28 provinces will be on show for six days at the fair organised by the trade ministry. Persian carpets, regarded as the best in the world, are the country's second most important export after oil, with some eight million of the country's 62 million people involved in the industry >>> FULL TEXT

Kharrazi suggest long-term oil contract with S. Africa

PRETORIA, Aug 22 (AFP) - Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharazi said Tuesday he hoped along-term oil contract could be concluded between his country and South Africa. "I'm here to upgrade the level of trade between South Africa and Iran," he told journalists in Pretoria at the start of the fifth meeting of the South-African-Iran joint economic commission >>> FULL TEXT

Row over Shajarian's comments

Tehran (Hamshahri) -- Persian classical singer Mohammad Reza Shajarian's recent comments published in a book ("Raaz-e maanaa") offended some musicians. Here are two replies: >>> Part (1) >>> Part (2)

Women & music

Tehran (Iran daily) -- A special feature instroducing influential Iranian women in the field of music. Here's the first: Fatemeh Homa Sadat Afsari >>> FULL PERSIAN TEXT

Musical instruments: Export

Tehran (Iran daily) -- The decision to lift the ban on the export of musical instrument has come a bit late. But better late than never >>> FULL PERSIAN TEXT

Persepolis departs for Doha

TEHRAN, August 21 (Iran Sports Press) -- With video: Persepolis team will travel to Doha, Qatar for a match against Al-Wakreh on Thursday at 9:00pm Persian Gulf standard time (10:30pm Tehran local time). Persepolis will meet Al-Wakreh as part of the Asian Club Championships >>> FULL TEXT

Hejazi: Iranian football too "individualistic"

TEHRAN, August 21 (Iran Sports Press) -- Naser Hejazi, former Esteghlal coach and 1970s Iranian National Team goal keeper, said Iranian football is plagued by individualistic football and lack of team work. "Our football has become only individual play, with little teamwork", he said on 'Football 90' show >>> FULL TEXT

Volleyball: Japan sefeats Iran

TEHRAN, August 22 (Iran Sports Press) -- The Japanese National Youth Volleyball Team defeated Iran 3-2 on Tuesday in the 10th Asian Youth Volleyball Championships. Despite this loss, Iran and Japan both qualify to the semi finals of the Championship >>> FULL TEXT


Khatami Explaines Government Performance, Problems

President Mohammad Khatami, in an interview broadcast on Iranian TV and radio has touched upon different political and economic issues facing the country. Lara Petrossian reports >>> LISTEN HERE

BBC Persian Service

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Grease Car

In the proud tradition of the Veggie Van comes the Grease Car, a converted VW Westfalia van that runs entirely on used cooking grease. Your intrepid hosts Justin Carven and Skip Wrightson are currently on a grease-fueled road trip across the United States. Check out photos from the road.

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Quote Unquote


Values are important, but which values? I believe in political identity, freedom to take part in the political process and to have the right to decide one's destiny. These are values, not superficial impressions of religion and trying to impose them on others as values... Defending the rights of the people is the most important value. It is not possible to have a society whose people do not have the right to rule over themselves.

-- President
August 22, 2000

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Woman editor found guilty


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