The Iranian Times

Tuesday, January 26, 1999/ Bahman 6, 1377, No. 652

Sehaty Foreign Exchange

Shahin & Sepehr



    Inferno in Gothenburg
    Sweden's desire to face the issue of immigration

    By Susanne Pari

    Gothenburg is a city most Americans have never heard of. It's a picturesque place on Sweden's west coast and it's known for delicious shellfish, the largest amusement park in Scandinavia, and a giant Volvo plant. After last October, Gothenburg is now also known for a horrifying discotheque fire that killed more than 65 teenagers, most of them from immigrant families.

    Just four days before this tragedy, I was at the Gothenburg Book Festival promoting the Swedish edition of my novel, The Fortune Catcher, about the Iranian Revolution. When I returned to the U.S. and heard about the fire, I thought of my new Swedish friends -- not just those whose ancestors were Vikings, but those who recently emigrated and whose children speak Swedish like the natives they have become ... GO TO FEATURE


Family Values, American and Iranian

The Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition
January 22, 1999

Two movies concerned with kids and families open today; they are, to say the least, worlds apart. In Larry Clark's "Another Day in Paradise," life is hell for a murderous young addict and his girlfriend until they find surrogate parents -- and the fateful allure of criminal adventure -- in a couple of middle-aged outlaw junkies played by James Woods and Melanie Griffith. Vincent Kartheiser is the apprentice Clyde and Natasha Gregson Wagner is his Bonnie, a sweet, sad waif who sniffs cocaine because she's phobic about needles. I'm phobic too. I look away whenever movies show people shooting up, and there's a lot to look away from in this jittery, bloody and occasionally affecting film. Mr. Clark takes special pleasure in showing us long, graphic close-ups of needles going into bodies, as well as spasms of slaughter by stabbing or gunshot.

A needle also figures in the opening moments of Majid Majidi's "Children of Heaven," a film from Iran in Farsi, with English subtitles, and an Academy entrant for best foreign film. No need to divert your gaze, though: The needle wielder here is a peaceful cobbler, and a long, graphic close-up shows a child's torn sandals under repair. Mr. Majidi's children are a third-grade boy, Ali, and his younger sister, Zahra; they live with their parents in a single room in contemporary Tehran. The filmmaker hangs his seemingly simple story on the loss of those sandals, and the kids' desperate, then resourceful, then triumphant efforts to hide the loss by sharing a pair of sneakers. ... FULL TEXT



If Iranians were ever expelled from earth (I can't imagine why on earth?) they would have somewhere to go. In 1979 -- Iranically -- astronomers named a chunck of Mars after the Iranian region of Lar ... Check it out

Forwarded by Payman Arabshahi

More Letters

* Only an accident

Babak Honaryar writes: I like to make a comment about Jerome Clinton's comment about Rostam and Sohrab...

I have read the original poem, not Mr. Clinton's book, and I got the impression that Rostam would have nurtured and helped his own son, had he known who he was... The tragedy is that neither the son or the father wanted this ending, and only a very unfortunate and complicated sequence of events led to a "patricide."

In short, I do not think Ferdowsi had an underlying message, arguing or justifying the preservation of royalty. He was simply reciting a grand tragedy with epical proportions ... FULL TEXT

* Lecture: Ancient Iranian languages, Seattle

Mr. Habibollah Borjian, a scholar of ancient Iranian languages with much expert knowledge in several related fields, including in Central Asian Persian-speaking communities will give a lecture at the Seattle Persian Circle on Wednesday January 27 at 4 pm.

Topic: Ancient Iranian Languages and Dialects

Persaonally, I think this is a golden opportunity for us to learn about a facet of Iranian culture about which very few people have adequate knowledge. So, let me take this opportunity or invite you to attend this Wednesday's meeting of the Persian Circle in Denny 215, University of Washington.

Ahmad Karimi-Hakkak

Book of the Week

Daneshvar's Playhouse
A Collection of Stories

By Simin Daneshvar

In five intriguing stories, the formal detachment of Daneshvar's prose reinforces her subtle revelation of repressive features in Iranian society. . . . These seemingly simple stories disclose a rich culture in a time of ferment and change, of women in chadors, held in contempt by the men who control their lives. . . . This volume is a valuable addition to our knowledge of Persian culture and the political complexities of modern Iran.
-- Publishers Weekly

Recent featured books


New! Bestsellers
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More news

President calls on police to prevent ``chaos''

TEHRAN, Jan 26 (Reuters) - Iran's President Mohammad Khatami on Tuesday called on the country's police to curb disorder after a bomb damaged the offices of an outspoken moderate newspaper. ``We cannot allow social disorder. We should protect the rights of everyone who works within the framework of laws,'' the official news agency IRNA quoted the moderate Khatami as telling a gathering of police officials ... FULL TEXT

Iran cuts defence spending to under $1 billion

TEHRAN, Jan 26 (AFP) - With plunging oil prices provoking a serious economic crisis, Iran has slightly cut its defence budgetfor the next fiscal year beginning March 21, papers here reportedTuesday. Parliament approved government proposals for a military budget of 2,800 billion rial -- about 933 million dollars at the official3,000 rial to the dollar exchange rate -- against 2,900 billion (966million dollars) for the current year.

Rial continues slide, down three pct-traders

TEHRAN, Jan 26 (Reuters) - The Iranian rial has continued to slide against hard currencies, losing another three percent against the dollar, traders and economists said on Tuesday. On Tehran's illegal but active black market, dealers sold dollars for about 7,750 rials each on Tuesday, compared to 7,500 rials per dollar on Monday. The rial momentarily fell to as low as 7,900 to the dollar late on Monday, dealers said ... FULL TEXT

Iran-Ireland economic commission begins work

Tehran, Jan. 26, IRNA - the 3rd session of iran-ireland joint economic commission began work here tuesday. iranian foreign minister kamal kharrazi and irish foreign minister david andrews led their respective countries' delegations to the session ... FULL TEXT

Bahrain's new envoy takes up post in Iran

TEHRAN, Jan 26 (Reuters) - Bahrain's new ambassador to Iran presented his credentials to the Iranian president on Tuesday, more than two years after the two countries downgraded ties over an alleged pro-Iranian plot to topple Bahrain's government. The official Iranian news agency IRNA said President Mohammad Khatami told the new ambassador that Iran and Bahrain shared common security concerns ``and this will help promote and strengthen their links.'' ... FULL TEXT

Iran condemns U.S. air attacks on Iraq

TEHRAN, Jan 26 (Reuters) - Iran on Tuesday condemned Monday's U.S. air attack on neighbouring Iraq, saying it had exacerbated tensions in the region. The official news agency IRNA said a foreign ministry spokesman ``condemned the recent attack by American aircraft on Iraq which killed a number of civilians and destroyed residential districts.'' He also expressed concern over ``the heightening of tension in the region which is due to America's military moves in Iraq.'' ... FULL TEXT

Nima Nakisa in Greece

Tehran (Iran) - National team goalie has joined a Greek soccer team for $1,500 per month (plus $450,000) ... FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN

Azadegan standings

Tehran (Iran) - Persepolis leads the Azadegan league with 31 points, followed by Saipa (Tehran), Sepahan (Isfahan), Chooka (Talesh) and Abu Moslem (Mashhad) ... FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN

$ Rate

Updated Jan 26

The dollar now offered at up to 730-735 tomans

Source: Sehaty Exchange (U.S.) Tel: 602-595-0777

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A guide to flirting, dating, and dumping.

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Quote Unquote


Swedes are sure to be wondering if such violence (Swedish disco fire) has racism connected to it. They think about that; about why their immigrants huddle in towns and neighborhoods of their own, about whether it's fair to consider these swarthy outlanders as a drain on the generous Swedish welfare system.

Susanne Pari
"Inferno in Goteborg"
The Iranian
January 26, 1999

Photo of the Day

Explosion at "Khordad" daily

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Musician of the Week

Sima Bina

* Havaakhaah * Yousef * Hamdel * Biyaa jaanaa

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