BBC: Story of the revolution

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Feb 26-March 2, 2001 / Esfand 8-12, 1379



* Freedom:
- Get Eminen

* Revolution:
- At last

- We all lost
* Iran:
- In France too


* Baniameri:
- Old-fashioned jaahels
- No poetic rite of passage

- Wrong information
- Persia is dead

- Get your priorities straight
- Semantics
- DON'T bring back Persia
- Persia small part of Iran
- Farsi creeping into English
- Power of unity

- Commendable approach
- No ordinary congressman
- Lots of kids

- Kings are for kids
Shah's general:
- Fallen heroes

* Googoosh
- Bunch of pothead brats
Esmail Nooriala:
- Non-sensical utterances

- Destroying Shamlu
* Identity:
- No more, no less

* Model:
- Oy vey!

* Revolution:
- You animals

- Sorry for Reza Pahlavi
- Very good at shouting
- Made fools of most

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March 2, 2001

* Get Eminen

After reading the short piece about how Eminem wins awards for his freedom of speech and the Iranian journalist gets punished ["Here & there"], I thought, "Hang on a minute. This could be turned into something positive."

As crazy as it may seem, Eminem is the most powerful man on earth, opinion wise. As soon as he says one word the world suddenly takes notice. So why don't we as a community ask of him to write about all the abuse that's going on in Iran? After all it's not like he would be censored or get killed over it.

He could potentially bring the eyes of the world onto our country and encourage the seed of change into faster growth.

Of course there is no telling whether he would accept the challenge but wouldn't it be interesting to hear what he has to say about the mollas' after the way he humiliated half the music industry and the American President?


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* At last

At last a well thought-out discussion of the revolution that does not blame any number of conspiracies and Western powers ["Surprise"]. The eternal truth of the world is unexpected results.

Mark Cooper

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* We all lost

I was about 10-years old when the revolution happened. Even at that age I was in middle of everything ["Surprise"]. I almost died twice in 24 Esfand Square and Maydan Shahyad area. I remember that no one back then knew the reasoning behind it all, but the revolution became an entertainment center for the people, especially young people. A good source of excitement like no other they knew.

I am saddened for losing the Rahimis ["The general's widow"] as well as the ones who were killed by the government like the Farrokhzads, and our war heroes, and the 17-year-old Mojahedin Khalghs & Cheerekhaa, Basijis and many many more. All these people died for what they believed in & none of them really won. We all lost because THEY WERE ALL IRANIANS >>> FULL TEXT

Eliot Salehi

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* In France too

I would like to draw your attention to the following regarding Behrooz Parsa's article, "I'm the Shah here": I read the article with great attention, and I believe every word he said. I would't go as far as to say the generals were gods everywhere in Iran but such power abuse must have been common in a totally bureacratic country Iran had become... I personally had a similar experience but in a democratic country, the country that claims to be the country of human rights >>> FULL TEXT

Darius Kadivar

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March 1, 2001

* Non-sensical utterances

I was saddened and deeply sorry to read the letter by an unknown face, AA, accusing one of our finest poets outside Iran of stealing from Ahmad Shamlu ["Baar-e digar, Bahman"]...

Now that you have printed Shamlu's poem as well, could someone come out and tell us which part of it has been picked by Dr. Nooriala, apart from the fact that both poems are written in Farsi and use a lot of plural forms of words ending in "aan"? >>> FULL TEXT

Hushang Mansurian
Hacienda Heights, CA

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* Old-fashioned jaahels

I read the article written by our so-called compatriot, Mr.Siamak Baniameri on"Art of Kissing". I was tremendously shocked because all I found in his article was an exaggeration about himself and other things that are closely related to him, like his father, and on the other hand, beating what can be considered as Iranian traditions.

I know that many foreigners who are interested in different things related to Iranians, spouses of Iranians and tourists who like to travel to Iran check your website in order to become more familiar with our rich culture, but you have introduced Iranian men as old-fashioned JAAHELS >>> FULL TEXT


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* Persia is dead

Let's settle this problem once & for all, the name of our country is IRAN not "Persia", and we are "Iranians" not "Persians". The reason is pure & simple: there is no country called "Persia" in the year 2001. So please set your clocks & renew your calenders!

If any of you Persian lovers show me a map (not a 1910 map!) with a country named Persia in it, I will take back all of my words. Persia was a country consisting of Iran, Afghanistan, Bahrain, parts of Iraq , Pakistan , Tajikestan & ....., so open your eyes & accept the reality -- there is no Persia any more. Persia is dead


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* No poetic rite of passage

I am writing in response to the article, "Not going back". I truly appreciate this author's opinion on what Iran has become. I have read many of the letters sent to this website in regards to Iran now. I feel that those letters have somehow romanticized and "prettied-up" the Iran of today.

Has Iran really changed from what it was during the time of Khomeini? We need to still maintain hope that we will all one day return. But to what? The story "A man without a country" rings a disheartening familiar melody >>> FULL TEXT


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* You animals

Mr. Moniri is very correct and to the point in his response to Ms. Amini ["Thy father's sins"]. It seems that after 22 years, she has not grown and still is the same "young and idealist" person!

You were animalistic. The violence that Iran has been subjected for 22 years was brought about by the violence you people committed in 1977-79. You cheered when members of "ancient regime," Kurds and Baha'is were murdered but you only cried foul when mollas turned against you >>> FULL TEXT

H. M. Jalili

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* Sorry for Reza Pahlavi

To those who have misread the essence of my article ["Thy father's sins"]: I am truly sorry for Reza Pahlavi to have followers who are illiterate, live in the past, have not studied a single word of Iranian and world history and -- yes -- they still wish to annihilate individuals for their beliefs.

I do suggest to all of you to stay where you are because the Iranian people do not want the likes of you to be part of their lives. And I hope Reza Pahlavi will bring some sense to his followers although it might be too late >>> FULL TEXT

F. Amini

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February 28, 2001

* Power of unity

I would like to appreciate the initiatives of the author of "Petition by one" for encouraging over one million Iranian Americans to write personalized letters to their senators and congressmen in order to oppose the regulations of fingerprinting and luggage searching of Iranians at U.S. airports. This is a highly effective and extremely productive campaign. However, I would like to suggest that such personal initiatives not be considered as a substitute for collective actions such as petitions >>> FULL TEXT

Kamyar Kalantar

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* Commendable approach

I would like to commend Mr. Mirfendereski's approach toward bringing discrimination against Iranians to the surface and even sharing it with the rest us via this forum ["Petition by one"]. I am hoping other Iranian - Americans will follow suit.

My bad experience in the past has been with the Iranian haters and bashers in the United States Congress. I applaud the efforts to keep terrorism in abeyance.

I would be the last person to impede those actions. However, actions such as the following can in no way be attributed to countering terrorism. Searching, photographing and fingerprinting an 85-year-old handicapped grandmother coming to visit her grandchildren. Fingerprinting, photographing and searching world-renowned athletes, scholars, artists. Fingerprinting, photographing and searching 4-year-old children coming to visit their relatives.

What makes these actions even more ludicrous is that since it was necessary to obtain a visa, these Iranians had to complete an extensive background and security check prior to coming to the United States. These are simply systematic acts of discrimination against Iranians.

Masoud Neshat

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* Get your priorities straight

Not to disrespect or belittle the comments/concerns of the readers, BUT does it REALLY make a difference whether or not Americans say Farsi, instead of Persian? Or whether or not Iran is "Iran" or "Persia"? ["Bring back Persia"]

My point is, with all of the country's problems and present issues, the last element of concern should be titles. This energy could be better utilized in other, more meaningful areas. In my opinion.

Who really cares what Americans think or say anyway? Let us, please, discuss and concern ourselves with the real issues facing our country and people: hunger, illness, degradation of culture and environment, drug-use, and poverty (in general) -- there is not a single letter addressing any one of these issues. What does that say about the priorities and mentalities of our fellow readers?

Sara Moussavi

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* Semantics

An important consideration in the choice of an official name of a country is whether or not it is a reflection of that country's culture and heritage ["Bring back Persia"]. The choice of "Persian" versus "Iranian" cannot erase the parts of our history that trouble us, nor can it distance us from the problems we confront as Iranians or Iranian-Americans today. We'll always have a little explaining to do about what our ancestry and culture mean to us, and these are discussions that we should embrace rather than try to circumvent with semantic stratagems >>> FULL TEXT

Cam Amin
University of Michigan-Dearborn

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* Fallen heroes

Twenty-two years after the brutal murder of Generals Rahimi, Khosrodad, Naji, and Nasiri by the barbaric low-life savages (revolutionizes as some call them), the memories of all these fallen heroes are still alive in our hearts and our minds ["The general's widow"].

I salute each and every member of Imperial Iranian Armed Forces for their bravery, patriotism and honor. Surrounded by all the chaos, betrayed by treacherous politicians, they stood their ground firmly and defended the country and the constitution and paid a heavy price for it, a price most of us will never pay!

Zendeh Bad Iran, Payandeh bad Artesh Shahanshahi Iran.

Quincy Irani

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* Lots of kids

Though I enjoy Saman's cartoons very much (at least some of them ) I do not agree with his view points ["Kings are for kids"]. Some 75 million Britons are all kids chasing their tails! >>> FULL TEXT

H. Hakimi

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* Wrong information

Obviously, Eli has not spent much time in Iran and has written what she was told before traveling to Iran ["Not going back"]. Many women including myself wear make-up and colorful scarves or rousaries.

More women work than they did before the revolution. Some 52% of university students are women! We have 2,000 Americans visiting Iran every year. This figure is obviously much higher for Germans, Italians and Japanese.

We have more than one soap opera on TV and they are not all about religion or Imam Reza. Eli must have liked that one so much she didn't want to see the other five channels.

Is having soap opears like The Bold and the Beautiful that important to a nation? What do you learn from them anyway? You could read a book instead.

True, the economy is not good, but there have also been improvements.


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February 27, 2001

* No ordinary congressman

Mr. Mirfendereski did the right thing contacting Barney Frank ["Petition by one"]. But Barney Frank is no ordinary congressman. If he was my congressman (which he used to be) I too would certainly write to him. He is not just a Democrat. He is a very open-minded, outspoken and liberal Democrat. In fact if you live in his constituency, all your life you won't ever feel like a foreigner.

While I would much rather take Mr. Mirfendereski's approach I would like to point out that those of us who live in ultra-Republican constituencies do not have a Barney Frank to write to. He is literally a needle in the hay stack of the Congress. If only all of Congress were Barney Franks! >>> FULL TEXT

Setareh Sabety

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* DON'T bring back Persia

I'm not sure how many times I've come across this 'name' argument but it never seems to go away ["Bring back Persia"]. Every time there is negative news from Iran, you get someone making an argument to change the name back to Persia.

Not surprisingly most requests come from Iranians abroad. I feel for them. I've been there. (I was in college, here in the U.S. during the hostage crisis. It wasn't fun!) But the reality is that Reza Shah asked other nations to call the country Iran, because Persia - at that time - represented an old and backward nation >>> FULL TEXT

Sassan Behzadi

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* Persia small part of Iran

This is an opinion and every opinion is valid ["Bring back Persia"]. But Persia is derived from the word Pars, or Persis, as it was known to the ancient Greeks, and has a narrow and specific connotation. It refers to a mountainous region to the northwest of the Persian Gulf, where the city of Shiraz and province of Pars (of present Iran) and the Achaemenid palace, Persepolis, are situated.

Using the term Persia or Persian corresponds to the small part of Empire of Iran. This word may help to describe a certain kind of product or species such as Persian Rug or Persian cat, but certainly would be insufficient and unprofessional for describing the country >>> FULL TEXT


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* Farsi creeping into English

There appears to be a concerted effort by some Iranian-Americans to arbitrarily replace Persian with "Farsi", as the English name of the language spoken by the majority of Iranians. As such, the word "Farsi" is slowly creeping into American English as a de facto replacement for Persian, and given that American English is the dominant form of the language, it is not unreasonable to assume that the use of "Farsi" will soon spread to other forms of English if this farce is allowed by Iranians to continue unchecked >>> FULL TEXT

Arash Alavi

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* Very good at shouting

I am so sick of people trying to deceive themselves on this forum that Iran has been anything different but a one-man show for the past 22 years. He is not called the Shah but the Supreme Leader.

Let's just lift our heads out of the snow and not pretend that no one can see us just because we don't see them. They have tortured more, killed more, destroyed more and will continue to do so -- that is there agenda inherent in their ideology because they think they are defending the "Right Cause"! >>> FULL TEXT

Sepehr Sohrab

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* Destroying Shamlu

Mr Nooriala it is obvious that you have no talent in poetry and frankly your poem sucked ["Baar-e digar, Bahman"]! Although I have to admit it is not any of my business to ask you to quit poetry at once but I strongly forbid you from DESTROYING (I couldn't find a stronger polite word) SHAMLU's poem. for god's sake keep your hands off of his poems. I'm not being rude or anything I'm simply telling the truth.

The Shamlu poem I am referring to is KHATAABEYE TADFIN (or kaashefaan-e forootan-e shokaraan). I'm also sending you a copy of the poem as an attachment. Compare specially Shamlu's poem with this part of Mr Nooriala's poem: "aasheghaan-e shakibaay-e aazaadi , monkeraane mosamame edaam" to the end.


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February 26, 2001

* Made fools of most

In response to "Paradox", in a way I admire Khomeni too. He made fools of most of the Iranian population by making empty, unrealistic promises, that not even a child would believe.

Let's see, he made Iran become the laughing stock of the entire international community, made you all look like idiots, and is still praised by some of the uneduacated fools who followed him, and his revolution led to the demise of Iran into a third-world country >>> FULL TEXT

Maral S.

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* Kings are for kids

As a 27-year-old, I have witnessed a revolution, a war and don't have a single nice thing to say about the present regime in Iran. The only thing I can say is that I was physically and mentally abused by a system that should be tried for inhumanity.

However, I have been fortunate enough to find freedom elsewhere, and make the best of my life. With that in mind, I find it extremely difficult to understand that some people still talk about "having a king" in Iran! >>> FULL TEXT

Saman Albaloo

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* No more, no less

In response to Farid Moghadassi's article on Andre Agassi, thank you ["Just don't do it"]. I had a good laugh and can now conjure up other ways in my mind Andre can identify with being Iranian on center court.

For those who wonder what Andre's stance on his ethnicity is, here is a hard fact. On a recent PBS special on "The Armenians," who do you think was on there talking about his Armenian background? You got it, Andre.

So it's not a question of why he won't admit his origin, he denies it altogether. Maybe his real name is Agassian, I don't know.

Enjoy Andre for the tennis player he is, no more, no less.

Ali Towfighi

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* Bunch of pothead brats

I just can't believe that you made such a comparison between the Googoosh concert and a bunch of pothead brats who don't know a thing about music ["Better than Googoosh"].

Backstreet Boys people like u don't value our music and singers. It's a pitty that our young genaration has to be so depressed to listen to the likes of the Backstreet Boys. Just because we are in the U.S. doesn't mean losing our identity of heritage.


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