Once worlds apart, two Iranians make common cause

If you’re Iranian, you probably know both and Akbar Ganji and Googoosh. You also know that 30 years ago they had as much in common as Rush Limbaugh and Madonna. The story of how they came together this week on a street corner in Manhattan for a hunger strike is a glimpse of the evolution of the Islamic Revolution of 1979 and the far-reaching impact of Iran’s current opposition movement.In 1979 no Iranian singer was more famous than Googoosh. She was Iran’s Madonna, Sheryl Crow and Mariah Carey wrapped into one. She was rich, famous and adored by millions. Back then, the 29-year-old singer was also a symbol of an increasingly westernized Iran.In 1979 Akbar Ganji was 19. He was a devout Muslim and staunch supporter of a religious movement to overthrow the western backed Shah of Iran. Ganji says he had Googoosh’s records, but his religious mentors convinced him that her music was un-Islamic. So he tossed the records in the trash.”All my friends did,” Ganji said. “Back then everything had to be about the revolution.”In February 1979, Ganji’s wish came true. The shah fell from power. In his place came the father of the Islamic revolution, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.For Googoosh and Ganji, the tables turned. Googoosh never recorded another album in Iran. Ganji went on to become a member of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard, worked for the government, then went on to become an accomplished journalist.The two very different roads traveled by Googoosh and Ganji began… >>>

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Meet your Persian Love Today!
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