On 20 June 2009, a brief video clip was circulated all over the world. It showed the death of a young, unarmed woman called Neda, who had been shot in the chest while taking part in a protest in Tehran and was bleeding to death on the street. Few images in the contemporary world have had such an instant and powerful impact. This footage was so intense it raised the awareness of the world on what was happening in Iran and forced world leaders to condemn the way the Iranian government was treating its citizens.
For me, however, it was more personal. There was a young man in the video trying to save Neda. He was my friend, Arash.
When I met him for the very first time, I could never have imagined that this slim young man would get caught in the crossroad of history ten years later. Even if I had the power to look into the future and see that this passionate doctor-publisher-author was destined to be present in one of the most important documents of contemporary history, I couldn’t have imagined the way he would react to it. I couldn’t have imagined that he would have the courage to testify against an unspeakable crime, and be prepared to forsake everything to expose the truth.