History Lesson: Dr. Mossadegh on the Rights of Bahais vs. Mohammad Reza Pahlavi on the Rights of Bahais


Masoud Kazemzadeh
by Masoud Kazemzadeh

As Prime Minister, Dr. Mossadegh treated the Bahai citizens of Iran just like other citizens of Iran. This is one of the reasons Hojatolislam Falsafi and Ayatollah Behbahani strongly opposed Dr. Mossadegh and supported Mohammad Reza Shah (and the 1953 coup). Falsafi broke with the Shah and sided with Khomeini in 1963 due to the land reforms and female enfranchisement and replacing oath to Qoran with oath to a holy book. Hojatolislam Falsafi was a strong ally of the Shah and strong enemy of Dr. Mossadegh in the 1950s.


Mossadegh and Bahais:

pp. 7-8


n 1951 Falsafi approached Prime Minister Mohammed Mossadegh on behalf of Ayatollah Borujerdi inorder to discuss the Bahá’ís and their activities, but was rebuffed by Mossadegh who rejected the idea that the Bahá’ís were any different than Muslim Iranians.41

41 Id. at 138-139, and 200 (complaining that Mossadegh “didn’t see Bahá’ís as a threat and generally considered them part of the nation of Iran, [entitled to] the same rights as the Muslims.”)


Mohammad Reza Shah and the Bahais



Beginning of 1955 Opposition to Baha’is

It was stated earlier that after the 28 Mordad coup d'état [4], the mullas insisted on their significant share in the revolt, and this was only possible by suppression of the Tudeh Party and Baha’is. The furtive and renowned preacher, Hujjatu’l-Islam Muhammad-Taqi Falsafi, has stated in his memoirs that his sermons against the Baha’is took place with the prior consent of Ayatollah Borujerdi and Muhammad-Reza Shah. In an interview on 19 Urdibehesht 1334 [10 May 1955] with a reporter of “Itehad-e Melli” Journal, Falsafi described his meeting with Ayatollah Borujerdi in these words:

Before the blessed month of Ramadan, I went to Qum where I met Ayatollah Borujirdi and found him deeply distressed. He stated, “Now that the situation of the Oil industry has been resolved and the Tudeh Party has been neutralized, we must make plans for Baha’is and arise to this challenge.”

In Khaterat va Mubarezat [Memories and Struggles], Muhammad-Taqi Falsafi writes:

Ayatollah Borujerdi sent a message for me to convey the issue [of Baha’is] to the governmental authorities. … Eventually, after Ramadan 1332 [May 1953], he sent a letter for me to meet with the Shah and to express the Ayatollah’s disapproval and displeasure over the situation of [the relative freedom of] Baha’is. … Before Ramadan of 1333 [May 1954], I asked Ayatollah Borujerdi, ‘Are you supportive of the idea that I discuss the situation of Baha’is during my radio sermons which are broadcast live from Masjed Shah?’ He thought for a moment and then responded, ‘If you were to say so, it would be good. For now, the authorities are heedless (of suppression and annihilation of Baha’is). At least that would suppress them [Baha’is] in the field of public opinion.’

He added further, ‘It is necessary to mention this beforehand to the Shah so that he would not have an excuse later to intercede, ruin everything and terminate the radio broadcasts. If the latter were to happen, that would be most unfortunate for the Muslims and would embolden the Baha’is.’

I called the Shah’s office and requested an appointment. When I met the Shah, I stated, ‘Ayatollah Borujerdi has consented that the issue of Baha’is, which is a cause of worry for the Muslims, be dealt with and discussed in my radio sermons during the month of Ramadan. Would your majesty consent as well?’

Falsafi relates that the Shah remained silent for a moment and then stated, “Go and preach accordingly.” [5] From 1327 [1948], each Ramadan, Falsafi used to deliver sermons against the Tudeh Party. Elimination and annihilation of the Babis and Baha’is was the cherished desire of the mullas and their partners in the government. During those days, it was widely said that strikes against Baha’is and destruction of their administrative and religious centers was one of the government’s objectives. However, this had to wait until Ramadan 1334 [May 1955].

1955 Baha’i Persecution

In accordance with Ayatollah Borujirdi’s wishes, immediately after the 28 Mordad [coup], the attack on Baha’is started with Falsafi’s sermons delivered in Ramadan 1334 [1955]. He commenced a brutal attack on Baha’is and the government confiscated Baha’i properties in every city. In Tehran, in front of the cameras of both foreign and domestic reporters, General [Nader] Batmanghelich, the chief of staff of the Iranian army, along with [General] Taymour Bakhtiar, the military commander of Tehran, took pickaxes and demolished the dome of the Baha’i Center. For many years, that building was impounded by the military and used for its own command center. General Muhammad Ayarmalu, the deputy-chief of the most powerful branch of government, namely, the Department for Security and Information [SAVAK], writes the following in his memoirs:

One morning, General Batmanghelich, the chief of staff of the army, along with General Taymour Bakhtiar, the military commander, ascended the dome of the Baha’i Center [in Tehran] and with pickaxes started to demolish the dome of the building.

The next morning, the military attaché of the United States came to my office and with an infuriated voice stated, “What was this act that the chief of staff committed? Why would the chief of military pick up an ax, and before everyone’s eyes, demolish a building? Furthermore, he targeted a building that is greatly respected and cherished by many of your citizens! My country is assisting Iran to repair the ruins, and now you turn a beautiful building into a ruin?!”


more from Masoud Kazemzadeh
ramin parsa

Mr. Kazemzadeh, MRX1, Oktaby

by ramin parsa on

Mr. Kazemzadeh -- You're patently ridiculous for lampooning at nauseum about Mossadegh (vs. the Shah) some 50 years after Mossadegh's death and some 30 years after the fall of the monarchy.

Enough already, man! If I didn't know better I'd say you work for the IRI, because you constantly provide a source of division amongst Iranians when you should be uniting them to fight against our ultimate enemy -- the tyranny of Islamic fascism, which is destroying our motherland as we debate YET AGAIN about Mossadegh and the Shah -- PATHETIC! Instead, like an abjectly whinning pathetic idol-worshipper all I see from you is blog after blog about your super-hero, Mossadegh.

Give it a rest, man.

We got the point, Mossadegh was a saint, a God, a prophet, a superman as MRX1 says, a great cook, a great sportsman, a great outdoorsman, a great lover, a great father, a great uncle, a great cousin, a great lawyer, a great politician, a great bicyclist, a great golfer, a great wrestler, a great mountain climber, a great chess player, great at ping-pong too, great sense of humor, great with the ladies as well, an uber genuis, ahead of his time, whatever -- give it a rest!

In reality, Mossadegh was nothing more that a patriot, and a misguided patriot at that, and nothing more.

But you go on and on and on and all you do is occupy people's precious time with this patently STALE garbage! Let's destroy the IRI, first and foremost, let's be creative in that goal, instead of playing non-stop rewind about Mossadegh and skewering the bones of the late Shah for the billionth time!



Neutral Observers

by Nur-i-Azal on

Please note the Bahai response to all valid criticism provided with irrefutable evidence, i.e. libel/defamation and canard.  This is what is in store for Iran and all Iranians should this organization ever be allowed any kind of prominence or political power. Please compare such tactics and strategies with those regularly employed by the Islamic Republic and other totalitarian Fascist entities with their critics. See especially the document entitled the Baha'i Technique, here, and my blog the Bahai Cult FAQ.

Also the blog on the Five Divine Presences in Sufism (as well as the one on Attar's Seven Valleys, and any others in the future) is designed to counter Bahai religious propaganda with direct  historical and textual evidence of the source of the ideas which Bahais claim are unique to their own, but which are actually culled (i.e. itktisabi) from the universe of Iranian esoteric Islam, Sufism and the Bayan.

Have a nice day!





The Five Divine Presences in Sufism!!!!!

by Seagull (not verified) on

They left one out, its the realm of HAPAROOT, where this guy is stuck.

Hopefully those Darvish who dwell in other realms will step forward and deliniate on the
journey from Jahl to Ensaaniat, there are far more applications for
that, prioritise brother, priorities.

"This scheme varies from author to author." Surprise, surprise.






Again spamming with bitterness

by sag koochooloo on

Are you going to spend the rest of your life bitter and ranting? A sad old man at 60 still sitting at a computer churning out the same old? Or are you going to move on and lead a happy life? It is YOUR decision whether you choose bitterness or happiness. You have left the Bahai faith now so MOVE ON.    You are who you make yourself, not what others do to you.  Keep things in perspective. Use your education and new faith for positive things. There are people in prisons in Iran and elsewhere in the world being tortured, being sentenced for 12+ years for asking for democracy. Your probelms and our daily problems in the West are trivial. Forgive me if I think there are more important things than your misunderstandings with a few people who happen to be of a certain religion. Get some counselling fro your anxiety - this is not meant as an insult. Take responsibility and sort it out in a positive way.   



by sag koochooloo on

We've been through all this. Just calm down, and stop being so spiteful. Stop going round in circles and blaming a group of people for your own paranoia . I was so glad you returned with your own articles about new religion etc, but it didn't take you long to go back to being confrontational and irrational .  I will not address you directly in IC in the future, but am not going to let you spam Bahai articles with misinformation. If you are intent on some form of revenge, the best would be forgiveness and happiness.  Despite what you think I do wish you well and look forward to seeing you writing good articles about the present and future, some of the new blogs you wrote are really interesting, please let us see your positive and compassionate side .



by sag koochooloo on

If you want to find the truth about why Azal is so angry with the Bahais see this blog. Sadly it is a personal vendetta.



Veiled Prophet of Khorasan


by Veiled Prophet of Khorasan on

Would you provide an example of when Bahai's "trampled"  anyone's right? When did they have to power to do anything to anyone. Not to mention I have never heard of the Bahai's trying to do anything to others?Why do Bahai's scare some people so much.

Natalia Alvarado-Alvarez


by Natalia Alvarado-Alvarez on

 Dr. K,

Wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving Day for you and your loved ones too.



by Nur-i-Azal on

And what about the rights of those who have been trampled by the Baha'is? How much more travelling time and miles of progress and civilization would that count for before their rights are likewise recognized and are made the touchstone of some progress you claim would be made in Iran in the case of the Baha'is?

Masoud Kazemzadeh

de nada

by Masoud Kazemzadeh on

Nadia jaan,

I am happy you liked it.

Best wishes and Happy Turkey day to you and your loved ones.



This sounds eerily familiar

by Nur-i-Azal on

benroos: "If ethnic minorities were neglected throughout the contemporary history of Iran, if minority religions were all in some level of restrictions, non of ethnic or religious minorities were not denied their mere existence as Baha'is were. So in that regard, some level of differentiation is understandable and respectful in my view."


I commend you, Anvar and Faryar for being honest enough to lay out the agenda for all to see, even though you all equivocate at the same time when laying it out. People should note the particular thrust of the argument made above. It is essentially making a very familiar argument already made by another well-known group, an argument which is basically saying, "We have been persecuted therefore we deserve an exclusive homeland of our own and the pride of place in such a homeland over and above everybody else and their rights."  QED

Natalia Alvarado-Alvarez


by Natalia Alvarado-Alvarez on



Veiled Prophet of Khorasan

Recognized religions

by Veiled Prophet of Khorasan on

The whole concept is ridiculous. I said in my other post that people should be free to pick a religion. Maybe not pick one at all. Maybe switch, or make up their own. Who cares?

If someone is doing a good job then why does religion matter. If a person is law abiding and by law I mean civilian law then what is the problem?

Why are religious people such bullies that they have to impose their beliefs on others? Are they so insecure in their beliefs.

Veiled Prophet of Khorasan

Re: We live in absurd world

by Veiled Prophet of Khorasan on

I do not think all people are talking about the same god. That is what all monotheistic followers of Abrahamic religions are talking about. Why do Muslims think everyone is worshiping their god?

What about:
*) Hindus
*) Shinuts
*) Buddists
*) Atheists
*) Agnostics
*) Pagans
*) Wiccans

Maybe someone does not worship any god. Or is it only "People of the Book" who count? A truly free society does not reserve rights just for the people who worship "the same god". All people regardless of their religious beliefs should have the same rights. That is why the west is more advanced.



by benross on

As a worshiper of Vodka (back when I was under the rule of IRI) I fully support your take on the subject. However, one must recognize that no matter how self centric the activities of a particular minority group may appear, and in many cases, in the view of an individual like I, how irrelevant to anything anyway, the issue of human rights and its respect for minorities, as a pillar of secular democracy does put Baha'i in a situation apart.

If ethnic minorities were neglected throughout the contemporary history of Iran, if minority religions were all in some level of restrictions, non of ethnic or religious minorities were not denied their mere existence as Baha'is were. So in that regard, some level of differentiation is understandable and respectful in my view. 


Dear Anvar, I'm still learning and hope you do the same

by oktaby on

I respond to your last paragraph first. I love and respect you regardless of this or any other conversation and whether you Irani, Chinese, Zimbabwean, Jewish, horns on your head, multilingual or mute. And even if you need to use the word 'still' to qualify your stated love and or assume my intolerance that was not stated or implied in anything I have uttered.

From here on it won't be as simple because we have fundamental philosophical and logical differences starting with what I outlined in first paragraph. Also, keep in mind my original point that has since become a sideshow: Mossadegh VS. Shah is sensationalism, demagoguery and irrelevant. Either one looks like an Angel compared to what we have now. However, any comment about Mossadegh is theoretical because in his short actual Tenure he was up to his ears with headaches that had little to do with subject at hand. I have noted why previously so I won't repeat and you can find my views on Mossadegh and Shah in various threads, two of which can fill small books but again not relevant to this in any meaningful way.

Critical problem is in front of us, all of us. That is the IRR. I covered this several times including in my response to your comment about Iranian youth. Reza-Rio De Janairo expanded that point quite nicely so I won't elaborate.You have addressed or reiterated points that have little to do with points I made and personalized points that are broad and expansive. Some details specific to groups and sects was pointed out by Nur-i-Azal. The Iranian dilemma is not/cannot be about Bahaiis although Bahaii's are a subset, to use your terminology.

I won't get into knowledge of Bahaii because that is neither a prerequisite nor relevant to the core topic. You can worship Vodka and should be free to practice it. My reference to global aspect of Bahaii was that it has an inherent dilemma. You won't fight for it because of your religious belief, while that is what it takes- and it is what you are asking whether implicitly or explicitly- and Iranian youth dying in this fight are dying and suffering for 'you' and 'I' as a whole, in the form of rights. Civil and other. Meanwhile, you suggest the Iranian youth need education on atrocities and Bahaii problems and.....

I find that illogical, insensitive and Ironic with all due respect to Bahaiism and your belief system. And when someone like me argues it, you ask for tolerance and understanding which is an indirect hurling of accusation much like anti-Semitism and a victimization approach. I know you mean well but I mean as well and I am not bound by limitations of a religious or ideological affiliation. So let’s agree to disagree and we keep on learning.OKtaby

Masoud Kazemzadeh


by Masoud Kazemzadeh on

Ebi jaan,








Dear Faryarm,

Thank you for your contributions. I learned from reading your posts.






Dear Neda,

Thank you. Keep up your great work.






Dear Anvar,

Ghabel nadareh.








Dear Laleh,








Dear Sag Koochooloo,






Laleh Khanum,

by Ski-Ab-Ali on

You wrote:

"Otherwise, tomorrow when they come for us, it will be too late."

They already have ...!


Reza-Rio de Janeiro

We Iranians are so far away from the Consciousness...

by Reza-Rio de Janeiro on

And so far behind the civilized world today...

We are a bastardized nation that on one hand pretends to be a true "Persian/Iranian" with over 2500 years of glorious history and civilization that has been the creator of Good Thoughts, Good Words ,Good Deeds and First Declartion Of Human Rights and on the other hand also a very backward and sick religious nation that in millions is still (after 1400 long years )mourning the death of few renagade Arabs consist of : Ali, Hassan Hossein +8 more fake loser Imams and not to mention a total fraud and imaginary 12th and last Imam called Mahdi that is even more ridiculous and preposterous immitation and version of yet another imaginary man made character called Messhia in christianity!!!! The saddest part is that these 12 idlized characters by millions of Iranians today are not even accepted in the present backward Arab/Muslim's world!!!!  How stupid, Ignorant and sad can we be as a nation in this world and century today????

With such level of backwardness, general split mentality and split identity and background, we are beyond help on so many levels unfortunately.......

So my poor fellow Bahai countrymen and women, 

Plese stand in line and take a number!!!

We are a screwed up nation plagued by the worst version of Islam and Muslims in the world!!! We first need to wake up from this 1400 years of nightmare and realize that we have been F$%ked for over 1400 years and worse we have attributed new dimensions to a very mentally sick and  psychopatic/Bi-polar Islamic culture that is running and ruling Iran and Iranians today....

With such deep rooted tragedy living inside and amongs us Iranians, the future of Bahais and other religious minorities are doomed as well, Unfortunately... We feel very sorry for you and your rights as well, but we can not even help ourselves right now! Truly sorry....

Awarness, Consciousness, Love and Peace


گر بخودآیی به خدایی رسی به خود آ !!!



Thanks for this article.

by sag koochooloo on

Thanks for this article. Very interesting and informative.


A Yardstick to Measure by…

by LalehGillani on

To condemn or condone a government, to support or oppose a regime, one doesn’t have to go far to find a yardstick:

If religious and ethnic minorities of a country are systematically or covertly persecuted, it is our duty and obligation to protest and raise our voices now. Otherwise, tomorrow when they come for us, it will be too late.

I enjoyed the article. Well done!


well said, beifly said, Abarmard

by kharmagas on

well said Abarmard.(mokhtasaro mofid)



by Abarmard on

Historically when one minority group gets recognized and their concerns and Rights become front line issue, the entire society benefits. If Iranians become extremely sensitive to the rights of Bahais, which you claim are not significant, then we have traveled miles a head towards civilized and progressive society.

Ali9 Akbar

Nur-i-Azal=Basij Obfuscator

by Ali9 Akbar on

you obviously have a lot to learn ... I forget the other names you've had on this forum but you change them as soon as you get banned so anything you say will be ignored...


To Anvar

by Nur-i-Azal on

Anvar: How is what I’m saying in contradiction to what you are saying?

What you are saying is that due to your self-appointed claim of being Iran's most significant religious minority (which I argue you are not, but which is what your organization has argued) that religious freedom in Iran is somehow one-sidedly dependent on your community being accorded some ad hoc status of recognition and granted its freedom, and from such potential endowment that then affords and entitles your creed a special status in the overall religious freedom scheme of things in a future secular Iran. The argument made by you is essentially the same argument made by Faryar, just wordier. Yet what you are saying essentially amounts to the same thing.

What I am saying, and what oktaby seems to me to be suggesting as well, is that religious freedom and rights have to be granted equally across the board without any special status or hyphenations attached to such endowment to and by any group. But you don't believe this and now you are equivocating. You Baha'is want to be the Queen of the proverbial high school prom, as it were! But correct me if I'm wrong.

Anvar:  I did not mention that Hindus, Buddhists, Taoists...

And neither did I, so these examples are a red herring introduced by you. Totally irrelevent to the discussion.

Anvar: Other than the Babis, the sects of Islam that you listed are, by the
definition of the authors of the constitution, considered to be “people
of the book.”

The Ahl-i-Haqq/Yarsan (i.e. Aliullahis) are considered to occupy the category of mulhid (heretics) under statute as well as shar'i & urfi case law in Iran at the moment. The same technically goes for the Isma'ilis, and I am happy to discuss the persecution of Sufism in Iran and the various fatwas passed in the 1990s in Iran against the various Sufi masters, if you like.

Anvar: Instead of reacting negatively to anything Baha’i, write a positive blog about how...

I'm not a sugar-coater or a dirt-under-the-carpet-kicker type person, as you probably have realized by now. Let's deal with the negativity first, and get that out of the way, so that we can then deal adequately and effectively with the positive.

And, yes, I would prefer that you and your brothers here stayed away from any of my future blogs. I will also not be posting in any of yours. But I reserve my right to respond to deliberate wooliness or attempts to pull sheepskin over eyes in more neutral fora such as blogs like this one.


Once More: No Special Treatment!

by Anvar on

*Nur-i-Azal* - You write: “All we ask for is azadi-i-Bayan for all Iranians in the true sense!”  How is what I’m saying in contradiction to what you are saying?

Unfortunately you keep misrepresenting here.  I’m not sure how else to say that Baha’is in Iran (or Egypt, or Lebanon, or Australia, or U.S.) only want love, peace, freedom, and justice for ALL which, yes, would also include the Baha’is!  We don’t want special treatment.  You, of all people, should be familiar with the Baha’is’ belief in unity and oneness of humanity!

Please take a look at the title of the blog which is explicitly about the Baha’is in Iran.  *okaby* and I are also having a nice conversation about Iranian Baha’is.  In that context, I mentioned “Baha’is are officially excluded from the constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran” which is factual and consistent with the blog and conversation threads.  I did not mention that Hindus, Buddhists, Taoists, and countless others are also excluded from the Islamic Republic’s constitution.  Is my original statement about Baha’is and the constitution any less factual now that I have left out these others?

Other than the Babis, the sects of Islam that you listed are, by the definition of the authors of the constitution, considered to be “people of the book.”  I won’t deny that their rights in Iran have been trampled.  I would even add the Sunnis to your list.  I’ll be happy to argue for their rights in appropriate blogs.  As for the Bayanis: Didn’t you recently state in a blog that they were practicing Taghia and it was difficult to tell them apart from other Muslims?  Of course, I wouldn’t want their rights violated either.  Once again, I hope for the day when everyone can freely speak their mind or practice their faith.  And I mean ALL.  I hope you also agree with that sentiment and not exclude the Baha’is from the mix.

Since we seem to agree on the principle of freedom of speech for ALL, would you then be totally satisfied if I lowered the number (160 years) that I used as a frame of reference to 143?  I would even lower it to 60 if that would make you happy.

Instead of reacting negatively to anything Baha’i, write a positive blog about how “Isma'ili Shi'ias, Aliullahis (i.e. Ahl-i-Haqq/Yarsan), Sufis and Bayanis” should be afforded freedoms of thought and speech in Iran.  I promise I’ll be one of the people supporting this notion on your blog if I see it.  I would even support it if the atheists were also on that list.

[ inside joke with my pal from down under: ]
Since you picked on me, does it mean that I am now allowed to leave comments on your public blogs?  I shall happily oblige!  I’ve been meaning to say hello to *sophia* anyway.  ;-)



Special Treatment: the problem with Anvar's argument

by Nur-i-Azal on

Anvar: "This somewhat prophetic (predictive) statement asserts that when even the Baha’is are at last freed then all, including other oppressed groups, will have also been freed."


Which as a position then explicitly and implictly is attempting to place the Bahai community of Iran upon some pedestal as being Iran's only true liberators and therefore given such status special treatment, and not equality, should be accorded Baha'is and Bahaism. However you cut it, this position is an attempted subversion of the principle of secularism and the separation of religion from politics.


Anvar: "Keep in mind that the Baha’is are officially excluded from the constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran."


As are Isma'ili Shi'ias, Aliullahis (i.e. Ahl-i-Haqq/Yarsan), Sufis and Bayanis.


And BTW Baha'ism is only 143 years old, not 160. Babism or the religion of the Bayan has nothing to do with Baha'ism. So the 160 years of persecution being claimed is actually a disengenuous and deceptive argument. The 20,000+ Babis who died between 1847-52 had nothing to do with Bahaism whatsoever. Their adherence was to the religion of the Bayan and its central figures,  who were Siyyid 'Ali Muhammad Shirazi, the Essence of the Seven Letters, the Bab, his immediate deputies (i.e. the Letters of the Living), and from July 8th 1850 onwards, Mirza Yahya Nuri Subh-i-Azal, and not to Mirza Husayn 'Ali Nuri, his son or their religion. So the martyrs you Baha'is like to claim for yourselves with the 160 years figure actually are martyrs of the Bayan, and not Bahaism. Be that as it may, the Bayanis are not asking or demanding any special treatment  by  the state or the constitution of a future secular Iran, and we have done more for Iran, democracy and the cause of secularism than all of you Bahais combined ten times over. All we ask for is azadi-i-Bayan for all Iranians in the true sense!


Not so fast…

by Anvar on

Dear *oktaby* - I’m not ready to agree to disagree with you yet.  I have a feeling that you and I agree on greater points and ideals more than you realize.  I just want to make sure that we also understand our subtle differences before agreeing to disagree.  Of course, when the time comes, that would be the gentlemanly thing to do.

I’m not sure which of my statements you found derogatory.  I regret that any of my comments might have come through as such.  If anyone were to point them out, I would certainly rephrase my statement(s) and apologize for the inadvertent offense.

As for your analogy about trying to compare last week’s attacker to this week’s:  Unfortunately many (not all) Iranians are under the impression that atrocities against the Baha’is have started after the revolution.  Others may even go back to the ‘50’s as documented in this blog.  Fact of the matter is that such maltreatments have gone on for more than 160 years; regardless of who has been in power.  Suffice it to say (from my personal point of view): ‘na oon khoobeh, na eeshoon……….”  Fill in the blank yourself. 

History did not begin with the recent events in Iran.

There are repeated references to “self serving” or “Baha’i centric” in your comments that I’m trying to understand what you believe them to be.  In one sentence you write: “The youth in Iran really need no more lessons.”  In another you state: “…if Bahaii somehow expect to be treated as a unique class or case, then their loyalty and motives can readily be questioned…”  (Statement #1- for future reference) That is a big IF, wouldn’t you say?  I hope you can see why I recommend that all Iranians familiarize themselves with the teachings of the faith, its history, and why it is hated by Muslim clerics and many Muslims.  That way, such conditional questions would not be raised.

You also write: “…do you acknowledge that lack of presence of Bahaii's on any front to fight for Iranian people, while expanding their global footprint, puts their 'Integrity and Character' to question? Certainly, the Bahaii religion has a Global and universal perspective, but it seems it may not have any room for loyalty to Iran while it expects it !?” (Statement #2- for future reference) - (I choose not to take this writing as ‘derogatory’ since I’d like to think that is not your intent.  Even though, it is really a statement and not a question.  Nonetheless, I’ll try to answer it.)

I am sure you are familiar with the concept of sets & sub-sets.  In that context, Christianity taught us “Love thy Neighbor” – Islam taught us “Love thy Country” – Baha’i faith teaches us “Love thy World.”  You are correct to state that there is a global and universal aspect in the Baha’i viewpoint.  Do you see the trend and how the full set is expanded?  The idea and circle of love (equality, justice, freedom, etc.) has been continually expanded from self, to family, to neighbor, to country, and now to the world.  When you care about your country (full set) you also care about your neighbor (sub-set).  Similarly, loving the world includes loving one’s own country too.  You are however incorrect to conclude that because of this global perspective, Baha’is have no room for loyalty for Iran.  We do not participate in partisan politics – do not resort to violence (even to defend ourselves) – do not try to grab power.  I can understand how from your political point of view it may seem like “lack of presence of Bahaii's on any front to fight for Iranian people…” to you.  One way, for example, I try to fight for people is to educate them about the 160-year old teaching about equality of women and men.  You’ll be interested to know that millions of people took part in the (in)famous Yes/No referendum that changed Iran to Islamic Republic.  Baha’is did not participate in that election and were questioned for their “lack of presence in the forefront!” back then too.

The reason why I labeled those particular quotes as statements #1 & #2:
As a Baha’i who enjoys cordial interactions, I can safely surmise that your knowledge of the Baha’is is either extremely limited or is based on biased teachings.  Many who questioned the loyalties of Baha’is to Iran took the next step and accused them of espionage for Israel (or Russia, or England, or whatever the flavor of the day or ignorance of the population dictated).  You say there will be plenty of time for education after the current regime is changed.  I say the time is now.  If someone like you (reasonable, educated, open-minded, eloquent, freedom/justice loving, …) who lives in freedom outside of Iran can still make such statements (#1 and #2) about Baha’is, then can you imagine the required level of learning required in remote regions of Iran? 

I should have warned you about my long post too!  ;-)  With apologies to *Masoud Kazemzadeh* and the bored readers, I’ll go on with the last point of our disagreements; the so-called hyphenation issue:

Another phrase that you keep using is: “I (oktaby) and most Irani I know…”  For some reason, it comes across as exclusionary.  I agree with you that hyphenation should not be a cause of division nor should it be the reason for unjustified advantages.  Where we disagree, I think, is that you think of hyphenation as something negative and I see it as something positive – or at least neutral.  To give you a brief background, I was born and raised in Tehran.  So far as I can account for my ancestors, they have been “Irani.”  They were all Muslims before and (despite all difficulties) changed their faith after Babi and Baha’i faiths were manifested.  I am a Baha’i by choice.  Am I Irani enough for you?  You claim that we should do away with hyphenations yet you make a hyphenated statement about Iranian-Baha’is not being loyal to Iran!  I’m not persecuted because I am an Iranian.  I am persecuted because I am a hyphenated Iranian.  Iranian-Women are forced to wear Hijab not because they are Iranian (or men would have to wear hijab too), but because they are hyphenated Iranians.  African-Americans weren’t forced to sit in the back of the bus because they were American, but because they were black!  I’d like to think that your point of view on this issue is noble and based on the ideals of Dr. Martin Luther King that people should be judged based on the content of their character and not the color of their skin.  I wholeheartedly agree!  But you need to realize that when the Black-Americans were forbidden by the laws of the land to marry White-Americans, it was not because they lacked ‘character’; it was because of the ‘color of their skin!’  Somehow, some hyphenated Americans (white majority) found it justified to pass laws against other hyphenated Americans (black minority).  Just like Iran. 

By the way, do you think that most people on this site are Iranian or Iranian-American? 

By arbitrarily ignoring the hyphenation, you are giving people a false choice of choosing either one or the other.  Your “unity principle” may indeed backfire if you want to be the arbiter of who is Irani and who is not; what loyalty means, or what the priorities are.  You are welcome to set your own priorities of ailments in Iran and try to fix them.   I have no problem with you educating “ ..Iran's entire population, first with the beauties of what Iranian culture and history has to offer…”  The problem is that I have been prevented to also put up my solutions for Iran for the past 160 years. 

Your solution is for all (ethnic & religious) hyphenated groups to assimilate so that we may not be treated unfairly anymore.  My solution is to teach everyone to learn to tolerate, if not appreciate, the hyphenations.

You are “from 3 different parts of Iran and 2 different religions.” In my book, you are hyphenated but it is meant as a compliment.  It tells me that I can learn a lot from your rich background. 

I think you and I love Iran, want separation of religion from politics, and want freedom equality and justice for all.  We want to see a glorious Iran and prosperous Iranians.  Am I right?  If you still feel that we should agree to disagree, I can respect that.  Let’s hope that we can also agree to agree (on significant points). 

I can still love and respect you as an Iranian and a human being; whether you think of yourself as hyphenated or not.  In return, I ask for your tolerance and acceptance; whether I think of myself as hyphenated or not.



Deep rooted

by MRX1 on

Bahais were doing fine at the time of shah Iran; they lived and prospered like anyone else. There was no policy by the government at that time to discriminate against them, kill them confiscate their land and so on.  All this was done on a back drop of very backward, heavily khorafati, religious society with major influence from mullahs. hatered of bahais and jews are very deep rooted by certain segment of Iranain society, it didn't start in 1955 and I much doubt it will stop in 2055! 

Now I don’t know what superman mossadegh could have done about all these? I understand he could leap and climb tall buildings and cure diseases’ and the blind all at the same time. But what we will never find out since the man is dead, but with a little luck we will  raise his status to Jesus and build an emamzadeh so we can worship him night and day......


2 riali

by capt_ayhab on

There are certain historical facts in this write up that can not be disputed and I do tend to agree with Mr.'s Anvar and Kazemzadeh,

Shah, in order to appease the AKHUNDS, basically sold out the Baha'i s by failing to put on place solid and strong laws to protect them.