The Iranian Times

Thursday, July 20, 2000 / Tir 30, 1379, No. 1026


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Iranian books


Due process
The Sherman proposal is anemic

By Guive Mirfendereski
July 20, 2000
The Iranian

During the "trial" of the "Shiraz 13," the rule of law, or its misrule, was evident in a variety of ways, but nothing was as ludicrous as the charge against a few of the accused for travelling to Israel. The Iranian Constitution guarantees freedom of worship to the Jew, and Jews are allowed to elect their own representative to the Iranian parliament. The Constitution also permits freedom of travel, but unless prohibited by law. A Jew therefore is brought up on charges of treason if he or she travels to the holy sites presently located in Israel. Does not a Jew have the same right to travel to places of pilgrimage as does a Moslem yearning to travel to Mecca or Medina in Saudi Arabia, or Najaf or Karbala in Iraq? >>> GO TO FEATURE


Just think about it
Iran's irrational judicial system

By Babak Yektafar
July 20, 2000
The Iranian

"I wouldn't want to belong to a club that would have me as a member," the Groucho Marx once said. This type of self-mockery along with playing multiple personalities was the hallmark of the Marx Brothers comedy team. The Marx Brothers are long gone, but I am glad to see that their comic spirit is alive and well in the city of Shiraz, in the Islamic Republic of Iran.

This spirit manifested itself recently in the controversial trial of 13 Jewish Iranians, accused of spying for the state of Israel, where the prosecutor of the case was also the Judge. True, I am not an expert in Islamic law. But I do consider myself a rational man and as such felt comfortable with the idea that the whole point of a justice system was to allow an impartial arbitrator with no connections to either side of a dispute to sit in judgement of the opposing views in a given case >>> GO TO FEATURE


Iran's reformers seek to forge political party

By Jonathan Lyons

TEHRAN, July 20 (Reuters) - Iran's leading reform movement gathered on Thursday to lay the foundation for a true political party that its supporters say could take on the conservative establishment

The Islamic Iran Participation Front, led by the president's brother Mohammad Reza Khatami, opened its first congress with an ambitious plan to forge a disciplined political machine from its loose network of pro-reform activists>>> FULL TEXT

Congressman Sherman on Iran -- Like General William T. Sherman's famous death march to the sea during the American civil war, where he left a trail of destruction and ruin, Rep. Sherman's march to the election ballot, with strong support from the Jewish lobby, is marred by unwavering, often unfounded, attacks on everything Iran and Iranian. Here is a synopsis of his recent statements in the U.S. House of Representatives in regards to Iran >>> FULL TEXT

Khatami Brother Questioned in Iran In Reported Plot

By Geneive Abdo
International Herald Tribune
July 20, 2000

TEHRAN - A brother of President Mohammed Khatami was summoned to court on Wednesday in a growing controversy over allegations that a vigilante had confessed to conspiring with senior clerics and security forces to attack leading reformers.

Mohammed Reza Khatami, who is deputy speaker of Parliament, was questioned along with a fellow pro-refom legislator, Mohsen Mirdamadi >>> FULL TEXT

New Iran discussion forum

Iran Forum -- The role and impact of intellectuals in contemporary Middle East is a theme that underlies virtually all cultural analysis and criticism in this region of the world. At a time when the social and human sciences are searching for alternatives to traditional political views of the Cold war period in the Middle East, the question of the responsibilities of the intellectuals and their role as supporters of certain humane universal values has become a persistent theme in the process of production of knowledge >>> FULL TEXT

Kish kish

Another Friday prayers leader, this one in Kish, says it is nonsense that foreigners come to Kish to have good time; they can do that in their own country! >>> READ HERE

Thanks to Sourena

More Letters

* Double standards

Wendy Vanstone writes: Mr. Pollack, Your letter was sincere and interesting; however, it did not deal with the double standards and inconsistencies in treating human rights violations in Israel and Iran. Over the years Palestinians born in Palestine (now called Israel) have not been able to go and see their place of birth or check their old properties. However, any Jew, anywhere in the world (ie, Brooklyn) can automatically become Israeli citizen. This is one moral issue that over the years has not received Mr. Sherman and his colleauges' attention in the House. Too convenient >>> FULL TEXT

* Typical Iranian male behavior?

Bernace Charles writes: A young American woman gave birth to a baby boy. The boy's father is Iranian and in America on a work visa. The baby is five weeks old and the young man fathering the child has not made a single attempt to see his son and stalling getting the paper work needed done for child support payments. Is this typical Iranian male behavior?

Damn sad if it is. How can such behavior improve any one's understanding of the Iranian people. The young woman was pretty much referred to as a tramp by an Iranian aunt when she was told of the child which the father wanted hidden away or aborted. Is typical Iranian male behavior to always blame the female? >>> FULL TEXT

* Depriving women of dignity

Shireen A. writes: Your caption under Farhad's fashion show reads, "A model wears a wedding dress part of Iranian fashion designer Farhad's 2000/2001 fall-winter high-fashion collection that was unveiled." It SHOULD have read "Overrated designer responsible for depriving women of dignity and self-respect-PURDAH with a TWIST", or "Does that wedding veil come with a dress?"

Really, is it necessary to give exposure to every person who is on the one hand lucky enough to be born Iranian but on the other unfortunate not to inherit the taste and refinement for which that culture is renown?

Such designs are uninspired and stupid attempts to be on the "cutting edge" by being shocking perhaps. If it were shocking it would have been interesting, but it was instead banally minimalistic past the point of both reason and beauty, and therefore unforgiveable.

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Mysticism and Dissent
Socioreligious Thought in Qajar Iran by Mangol Bayat


Iran dar chahaar fasl
Iran in four seasons by Sadeghi Fasaei

Music store


Translation of today's poem by Zara Houshmand:

My love, my life, you ask why I'm so hard.

Go ask your eyebrows, ask your wild hair.

Your tight lips will tell why my heart feels no peace.

Your magical eyes will explain my disease.
-- Rumi
Previous translations

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Remaining three Iranian Jews convicted of espionage submit appeals

TEHRAN, July 20 (AFP) - All 10 Iranian Jews sentenced to prison earlier this month for involvement in an alleged Israeli espionage ring have now submitted appeals after three of them filed motions Thursday, chief defence lawyer Ismail Nasseri told AFP. The legal requests will be forwarded to an appeals court within a week, he said >>> FULL TEXT

Reformers aim to change political climate

TEHRAN, July 20 (AFP) - Reformers in Iran close to President Mohammad Khatami served notice on the country's conservatives Thursday that they will not take attacks on them lying down. "We must change the political climate in the country, which is why the various reformist parties and other groups must adopt a new strategy," Mohammad-Reza Khatami, head of the Islamic Iran Participation Front (IIPF) and President Khatami's brother told a congress of the Front here >>> FULL TEXT

Iran challenges Baghdad's figure of 29,000 Iraqi POWs in Iran

TEHRAN, July 20 (AFP) - Tehran is contesting Baghdad's assertion that 29,000 Iraqi prisoners of war remain in Iran, the government newspaper Iran said Thursday. "Iraqi officials should take into account the number of freed prisoners when they make their estimates," said Mohammad Balar, a spokesman for the government's commission for prisoners of war >>> FULL TEXT

US Cuts Funding to World Bank Over Support to Iran

Washington, DC (African Eye News Service, July 19, 2000) - African HIV/Aids programmes have benefited from a US House of Representatives amendment to cut funding to the World Bank in protest against its resumed funding to Iran. The cut in funding comes after the World Bank announced in May it would resume lending US$231 million to Iran, which has been widely condemned for its prosecution of 10 Jews charged with spying >>> FULL TEXT

Iranian 'tollgates' cash in on Iraqi oil smuggling

By Scott Peterson, The Christian Science Monitor, July 20, 2000, TEHRAN, IRAN -- Iran's flip-flopping "policy" toward Iraqi oil smuggling - in violation of United Nations sanctions - is proving enigmatic even in diplomatic circles. American officials say that after two months of strictly enforcing the UN embargo, Iran's Revolutionary Guards are now allowing, for pay, scores of sanction-busters to use Iranian waters to evade American and other craft monitoring the area. "Nobody really knows who is in charge," says Mohammad Hadi Semati, a political scientist at the University of Tehran >>> FULL TEXT

Golshiri's wish comes true -- after death

Tehran (Goonagoon) -- Authorities have finally allowed the reprinting of Houshang Golshiri's masterpiece, the novel "Shazdeh Ehtejab" -- more than a month after his death >>> FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN

Top of the music charts

Tehran (Goonagoon) -- Hossein Zaman's new album "Qesseh-ye shab" is in first place and Farman Fathalian's "Moqim" -- a "superficial mix of pop and Indian music" -- is in the number 2 spot >>> FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN

TV: Stop bad mouthing us

Tehran (Bahar) -- Iranian state TV responds to accusations by the deputy culture minister that it is not cooperating promote Iranian movies >>> FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN

Iranian cycling wins gold medal

(Iran Sports Press) -- The Iranian Cycling Team managed to win its first gold medal in its history in the Asian Cycling Championships being held in Shanghai, China >>> FULL TEXT

Esteqlal loses second match

(Iran Sports Press) -- Tehran's Esteqlal Club were defeated by Yugoslav side Meletseenar 4-2 on Wednesday in a friendly match. Esteqlal club return to Iran after taking part in two friendly matches against Yugoslav club sides. Esteghlal managed a 1-1 draw against Naprdac on July 17.

Remembering a tragic accident

(Iran Sports Press) -- The heart breaking story of Mohammad Parsa, former player on Payam football team, stresses the need for sporting organizations within Iran to provide insurance coverage for their players to protect them in event of a tragic accident. Accidents, such as the one from which Parsa lost his youth to, must be reviewed regularly to remind and pressure Iranian sports officials to provide health insurance coverage to all athletes >>> FULL TEXT


Cabinet reshuffle

Some 212 parliamentarians wrote a letter to President Khatami calling for ministerial restructuring. The Majlis deputies stressed that in order to put an end to administrative problems, the government should urgently present a plan to the Parliament >>> LISTEN HERE

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Aussie chelokababi

"At Persepolis (somewhere in Australia), you will be treated to a delicious range of Persian dishes. Dine in and enjoy our succulent barbeque meats and poultry - all charcoal grilled over an open flame."

Beyond Iran

Alcatraz History

Alcatraz. The Rock. Al's Place. Call it what you want, Alcatraz Island continues to draw thousands of devout pilgrims to its rocky shores. Adorned with malfunctioning audio headsets, their bellies full of Fisherman's Wharf crab cocktails, these timid souls are shepherded through the notorious halls of Cell Block D by grim federal employees, where they become dutifully creeped out.

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Quote Unquote


We must change ourselves into a political party, a real party. We must change from a party that has plans and policies to a party of real action.

-- Mohammad Reza Khatami, leading reformist MP
July 20, 2000

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