He’s back with us

It was close to 8 PM Wednesday night when my cell phone rang.  I picked up the phone and saw the name Shakeri on it.  My heart started to beat.  Which Shakeri could be on the other end of the call?  Is it Ali’s brother calling me to give me updates on Ali’s case?  Or could it be Ali himself?

I answered the phone and said hello and once I heard the first word I knew it.  It was Ali himself calling me to let me know that he was back with his family.  He sounded tired and did not want to talk to him for long.  I told him I will call in a few days when is rested.  I did not know how to react.  I was happy that he is safe and sound and yet I was sad to see a gentile man such as Ali, spend four months of his life in prison not knowing what the charges are or what the future holds.

He went home to see his ailing mother who passed away days after seeing his son for the last time.  Ali was a mellow man.  He could not even hurt a fly.  Yet the Islamic Republic saw him as a danger to their existence.

Unfortunately Ali’s case is not unique in the Islamic Republic of Iran.  In a country that its President claims to be the freest nation in the world, journalists are imprisoned for doing their public duty of reporting, union leaders are in jail because they demand better future for the workers, women are hauled away because they demand equal justice as the men, and students are beaten because they want to ask a few questions of the President.  If this is called freedom, I hate this freedom!

After hanging up the phone I started to think back.  In my recent conversations with him before his travel to Iran, we talked about the possibility of military action against a country that we both love, Iran.  We knew that such an attack would be disastrous to Iran as well as the region and possibly; no most likely; the world.

We are seeing a marriage made in heaven of two sides of fanaticism.  On one side is President Ahmadinejad, who does not see the repercussion of his mouth. No wonder the world does not trust him when he says the Iran’s nuclear program is purely peaceful. And on the other side is President Bush, who does not see the repercussion of his actions.  We can see the outcome of his “democratization” of the Middle East.  I would recommend him to stay in Iraq for couple of weeks without security!  For the sake of Laura, Jenna and Barbara, I hope he makes it back well!!

Anyways back to my main point.  I think I will sleep well tonight knowing Ali is back.

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