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Forough Farrokhzad, 1935-1967

"[She] loved as in our age
People already do no longer; as only
The wild soul of a poet
Is still condemned to love".
Ever since her tragic death in a car accident in 1967, Forough Farrokhzad has been drawing thousands of visitors to the Zahir-al-Doleh cemetery in Tehran. They come to lay flowers, recite poetry and light candles on the grave of the poet who has become an inspiration to women not only in Iran, but wherever women's rights are severely curtailed. If she had survived her car crash, the poet would have celebrated her seventieth birthday this year. Farrokhzad was also a film director: her documentary The House is Black is considered a masterpiece by filmmakers like Abbas Kiarostami and Chris Marker and critics like Jonathan Rosenbaum. More inside.
posted by matteo on Dec 6, 2005 - 8 comments

never ever

I will never apologize for the United States of America, ever. I don't care what the facts are As we read of the unfortunate crash of an Iranian military plane, causing at least 119 deaths, it's worth remembering what happened 17.5 years ago. Arundhati Roy has written and spoken about Bush Sr.'s quote but the act itself has often been forgotten. The US did end up going to the International Court of Justice and coughing up some dough, however.
posted by allen.spaulding on Dec 6, 2005 - 64 comments

Hi kids! Do you like violence?

Animated video broadcast on Iran's IRIB state television, apparently aimed at children, seemingly promotes the virtues of becoming a suicide bomber. Coralized wmv link, transcript.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane on Nov 6, 2005 - 57 comments

Edoardo Agnelli was a moslem

Iranian students demonstrate outside Italian embassy in Iran.Chanting anti-Zionism slogans, the ralliers called for the withdrawal of the Zionists from the occupied Palestine.
They also called for the Italian government's explanation on the Nov 15, 2000 assassination of the Eduardo Agnelli suspiciously at the hand of the zionists. Edoardo Agnelli, born in June 9, 1954 in New York of a Christian father and a Jewish mother, had converted to Islam four years before the victory of the Islamic Revolution in Iran in 1979. He was the only son of the Italian tycoon Gianni Agnelli -director and the main shareholder of Fiat and Ferrari automaking factories - who died of prostate cancer in January 24, 2003.
Some pictures which prove he was a Moslem.
posted by persia on Nov 3, 2005 - 103 comments

A world without Israel or a UN without Iran?

Newsfilter: If Mahmoud Ahmadinejad called for the destruction of Israel, would anybody listen? Apparently this time they are. While vague threats from Iran are a dime a dozen, "Since 1945, the establishment of the United Nations, no head of state which is a member of the United Nations ever called for the destruction of another member of the United Nations, publicly and clearly, as the president of Iran did." according to Shimon Peres, in demanding that Iran be expelled from the UN for the statement. Much of the world seems pretty upset (including the US, who's destruction was also called for on this merry "World without Zionism" conference), but will it lead to anything, or is it just a ratcheting up of the hyperbole between Iran and the IAEA?
posted by loquax on Oct 27, 2005 - 111 comments

The Photos of Shadi Ghadirian

Like Everyday
"I am a woman and I live in Iran. I am a photographer and this is the only thing I know how to do."
posted by anastasiav on Oct 17, 2005 - 15 comments

Soldiers of the Hidden Imam

What of Iran's nuclear program? That was not a pressing concern for the young people I met. None of them raised the issue in conversation with me. When I asked them about it, they fell into two groups... Yet both insisted with equal vehemence that an American or Israeli bombing of nuclear installations, let alone an Iraq-style invasion, would be a wholly unacceptable response to Iran's nuclear ambitions... A perceptive local analyst reinforced the point. Who or what, he asked, could give this regime renewed popular support, especially among the young? "Only the United States!" If... whatever we do to slow down the nuclearization of Iran does not end up merely slowing down the democratization of Iran; and if, at the same time, we can find policies that help the gradual social emancipation and eventual self-liberation of Young Persia, then the long-term prospects are good. The Islamic revolution, like the French and Russian revolutions before it, has been busy devouring its own children. One day, its grandchildren will devour the revolution

Soldiers of the Hidden Imam
posted by y2karl on Oct 14, 2005 - 32 comments

Is the Blair government creating another dodgy dossier?

Is the Blair government creating another dodgy dossier? Following Tony Blair's recent outburst accusing the Iranian government of supporting attacks on British troops, a team are being dispatched to Iraq on a hunting expedition, in the hope of proving him right. Meanwhile, a prominent neo-con who served as the Iraq desk officer for the Office of Special Plans is telling the British that only the threat of force will tame Tehran. Sound familiar?!
posted by insomnia_lj on Oct 9, 2005 - 75 comments

Don't say I didn't warn you.

Oliver North's advance publicity for a US war on Iran : Over 25 years have passed since the takeover of the Southern Baptist Convention. Now, accusations that the organization fosters a Theology of War, call attention to SBC head Bobby Welch's new campaign to "baptize a million people in one year and develop “warrior leaders”. This conflation of Christian faith with military terminology is - some feel - quite intentional. Will "Christian soldiers" once more go into battle with Bibles in hand ? And, is faith best advanced by the bayonette point of "discipleship" ?
posted by troutfishing on Oct 1, 2005 - 46 comments

You Can't Get Fooled Again

A History of Concealment and Deception
With an hour-long slide show [PDF, 2.4MB] that blends satellite imagery with disquieting assumptions about Iran's nuclear energy program, Bush administration officials have been trying to convince allies that Tehran is on a fast track toward nuclear weapons.
[more inside]
posted by kirkaracha on Sep 15, 2005 - 88 comments

Did we jump to conclusions?

It turns out that those boys who were hanged in Iran may not have been quite so innocent after all. [original post]
posted by dirtynumbangelboy on Aug 3, 2005 - 44 comments

Why this man would be willing to die?

‘No one should be imprisoned – not even for a second – for expressing an opinion’ Akbar Ganji announced his hunger strike on May 20 with these words.

Ganji, an Iranian journalist and writer, was arrested on April 22, 2000 following his participation in an academic and cultural conference held at the Heinrich Böll Institute in Berlin on April 7-9 entitled "Iran after the elections," at which political and social reform in Iran were publicly debated. He was sentenced on January 13, 2001 to 10 years imprisonment plus five years internal exile. He is now on 50th day of hunger-strike, weighs 52kg, is unconscious much of the day, and may die soon. [more inside]
posted by lenny70 on Jul 31, 2005 - 12 comments

Dick Cheney's Pre-Emptive Nuclear War on Terror

In case of emergency, nuke Iran. From the folks who brought you Operation Iraqi Freedom and the "last throes" of the insurgency, the latest strategy for enhancing homeland security and US global standing is to launch a nuclear first-strike against Iran in the event of another 9/11-style attack -- whether Iran has ties to the attackers or not. As Juan Cole points out, turning a Shiite Muslim nation into the next Hiroshima could have disagreeable consequences. (First reported by the American Conservative, not your typical liberal rag, and via DailyKos.)
posted by digaman on Jul 29, 2005 - 78 comments

Gay Teens Executed in Iran

Iran executes two teenagers. Their crime? Making love. Homosexuality is a crime under Sharia law. Meanwhile, newly "liberated" Iraq moves closer to embedding traditional Islamic laws in its new constitution, reducing rights for women. Will Iraqi gays be the next to suffer the wrath of "Allah's law" after years of secular oppression under Saddam Hussein?
posted by digaman on Jul 21, 2005 - 109 comments

Profits for some, jailtime for others

If you're not Cheney's friend, be careful what you sell overseas - While residing in Poland, British citizen Ali Manzarpour was arrested for the export of a Berkut 360, a small kit plane manufactured in the United States, to Iran. The issues surrounding this application of American law overseas on foreign nationals notwithstanding, the US Department of Justice Attorney's office could not explain what sensitive technologies were in the plane, which could motivate the arrest. Coincidentally, Halliburton's use of a Cayman Islands subsidiary to trade with Iran without restrictions remains unresolved, and, with the help of the Department of State, the United States remains the largest arms dealer in the world.
posted by AlexReynolds on May 30, 2005 - 14 comments

Director of "The Lizard" to make Iranian campaign ad

Kamal Tabrizi, Iranian director of "Marmoulak" (The Lizard), has been hired by to make a campaign ad for presidential candidate Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani.
posted by 445supermag on May 25, 2005 - 6 comments

Iran

Elections in Iran Iran Scan is an English-language blog covering the election in Iran. One of my favorite lines... "As the Iranian elections begin to look more and more like California's recent gubernatorial elections, one wonders whether these elections will similarly be more about the candidates persona as opposed to their policy."
posted by halekon on May 18, 2005 - 7 comments

Iran murderess given stoning verdict for adultery

Iran murderess given stoning verdict for adultery Death by stoning for adultery is still a possibility in Iran. (I'm guessing "Desperate Housewives" doesn't have an Iranian TV equivalent.)
posted by kmtharakan on May 18, 2005 - 47 comments

Q & A with former Israeli Mossad chief Efraim Halevy.

Q & A with former Israeli Mossad chief Efraim Halevy. Halevy fields questions from readers around the world. See also his article "The coming Pax Americana".
posted by ori on May 16, 2005 - 19 comments

Cristobal Vila's Isfahan Movie

An amazing piece of animation made all the better by its magical subject: the lovely architecture of Persia and its storybook capital for some 200 years, Isfahan. Cristobal Vila, principle of Eterea Studios, shares behind the scenes information... and you can even purchase a print from the movie, if you're so inclined. Be sure to check out his other works. Via Times & Seasons.
posted by silusGROK on May 7, 2005 - 15 comments

Damning leak for Blair / Bush!

Damning leak for Blair / Bush! A leaked transcript of a senior British government meeting indicates that the Bush administration viewed war with Iraq as "inevitable" as of July 2002, even though the rationale for war was "thin" and that "Saddam was not threatening his neighbours, and his WMD capability was less than that of Libya, North Korea or Iran." It further states that the desire to bring about regime change was "not a legal base for military action", and that the only legitimate reason to declare war was with UNSCOM approval. Most disturbingly, it indicates that there were "strategies for dealing with Libya and Iran. If the political context were right, people would support regime change."
posted by insomnia_lj on May 1, 2005 - 139 comments

interview with Satrepi (author of Persepolis)

Great Salon interview with Marjane Satrapi (author of Persepolis). via
posted by Tlogmer on Apr 26, 2005 - 6 comments

Regarding Blood And Oil

Whereas, in the past, national power was thought to reside in the possession of a mighty arsenal and the maintenance of extended alliance systems, it is now associated with economic dynamism and the cultivation of technological innovation. To exercise leadership in the current epoch, states are expected to possess a vigorous domestic economy and to outperform other states in the development and export of high-tech goods. While a potent military establishment is still considered essential to national security, it must be balanced by a strong and vibrant economy. 'National security depends on successful engagement in the global economy,' the Institute for National Security Studies observed in a recent Pentagon study.

Regarding Blood and Oil: The Dangers and Consequences of America's Growing Petroleum Dependency by Michael T. Klare, here is an excerpt from the book and here is his most recent article--Oil and the Coming War With Iran. Well, at least he has been consistent--consider The Geopolitics of War, Wars Without End, Oiling the Wheels of War, and Imperial Reach from his articles for The Nation alone. Here is an excerpt from his previous Resource Wars and here is Scraping the bottom of the barrel and Bush-Cheney Energy Strategy: Procuring the Rest of the World's Oil. Well, as to his position on current events, I don't think we need to draw a picture here.
posted by y2karl on Apr 13, 2005 - 52 comments

Jeffords' Theory

Jeffords' Theory: "U.S. Sen. Jim Jeffords, the Vermont Independent, may face a clear field right now in a 2006 re-election bid, but his March 22 performance on Vermont Public Radio's Switchboard program raised a few eyebrows. I think it was all done to get oil, Jeffords said of invading Iraq. And the loss of life that we had, and the cost of it, was to me just a re-election move, and they're going to try to live off it. Probably start another war, wouldn't be surprised, next year. Probably in Iran, said Jeffords, echoing Seymour Hersch's words from January.
posted by jenleigh on Apr 11, 2005 - 84 comments

The Shahs of Old

The Epic of Kings. Dr Charles Melville, a lecturer of the University of Cambridge is compiling a list of all the world’s handwritten and illustrated versions of the Shahnameh, the masterpiece of Iranian poet Ferdowsi. “In the first step, I began to search libraries and museums in Iran, Turkey, the United States, India, and a number of European countries. After finding the sources, I traveled to the countries to study the versions that I had found in my search”. Ferdowsi's epic poem (English translation here) has 62 Stories, 990 Chapters, and contains 60,000 rhyming couplets -- making it more than seven times the length of Homer's Iliad.
posted by matteo on Apr 11, 2005 - 6 comments

the politics of handshakes

Handshakes are an important: They've signaled new eras in international relations, but this week they reaffirmed the sad realities of our time.
posted by trinarian on Apr 9, 2005 - 15 comments

Truth?

Rape, Torture, and Lies An ongoing Canadian saga has a sad new twist today: photojournalist Ziba Zahra Kazemi was likely brutally tortured and raped before her death in Iran in 2003. Arrested after a demonstration, the official Iranian line has been that her death was an accident due to injuries from a fall. The ER doctor who treated her has now spoken out, after being granted refugee status in Canada. Wikipedia has an excellent outline of the entire story.
posted by livii on Mar 31, 2005 - 65 comments

Because Hoder didn't.

Happy Noruz 1384! Learn about the Persian new year and festivities and traditions that take place.
posted by BuddhaInABucket on Mar 20, 2005 - 9 comments

Space Station and Iran Arms Link

Funding for the International Space Station may dry up next year. The Iran Non-Proliferation Act of 2000 will prevent further Russian Soyuz flight sponsoring from the U.S. budget. This problem looms large as a new NASA Director is appointed by shrub and the Space Shuttle project hopes to have it's first launch mid-year since the Columbia explosion in Feb. 2003. via
posted by peacay on Mar 15, 2005 - 13 comments

Clouds Over Iran: The Past Roots of Unintended Consequences Present

In Clouds Over Iran, Stephen Kinzer. author of All the Shah's Men: An American Coup and the Roots of Middle East Terror, meditates upon the current confrontation in a review of Christopher de Bellaigue's 'In the Rose Garden of the Martyrs': Reflections on Iran. Also by Kinzer, Iran and Guatemala, 1953-54 - Revisiting Cold War Coups and Finding Them Costly. And here is a biography of Mohammed Mossadegh, who, Time magazine named 1951's Man of the Year and who the Iranian.com names Iranian of the Century (More inside, of course...)
posted by y2karl on Mar 7, 2005 - 13 comments

The profits of freedom

Iran gets bombed June 2005. "George W. Bush has received and signed off on orders for an aerial attack on Iran planned for June 2005. Its purported goal is the destruction of Iran’s alleged program to develop nuclear weapons"
posted by Mean Mr. Bucket on Feb 25, 2005 - 130 comments

Another Natural Disaster.

Hundreds killed in Iranian quake On a smaller scale than the December tsunami, but no less a disaster to the people this quake hit.
posted by davy on Feb 22, 2005 - 13 comments

Global blogger action day called

The global web blog community is being called into action to lend support to two imprisoned Iranian bloggers. (BBC) to lend support to two imprisoned Iranian bloggers. (BBC) The month-old Committee to Protect Bloggers' is asking those with blogs to dedicate their sites on 22 February to the "Free Mojtaba and Arash Day". Arash Sigarchi and Mojtaba Saminejad are both in prison in Iran.
posted by hoder on Feb 21, 2005 - 7 comments

Putin says no Iran nukes in the offing

Why would he say that? "RUSSIAN PRESIDENT VLADIMIR PUTIN says Iran isn't interested in nuclear weapons." via The Indepundit. Interesting. Is Putin being disingenuous? Wishful thinking, perhaps?
posted by alumshubby on Feb 19, 2005 - 39 comments

Iran & Syria to form alliance

Iran and Syria to form an alliance? Yeah, I know it's just been touched upon, but considering the specter of this (whether it is or is not ominous)....
posted by malaprohibita on Feb 16, 2005 - 27 comments

Iraq Winners Allied With Iran Are the Opposite of U.S. Vision

Iraq Winners Allied With Iran Are the Opposite of U.S. Vision [access:sexy247@mailinator.com/ biteme] You can't always get what you ask for:: ...Yet the top two winning parties -- which together won more than 70 percent of the vote and are expected to name Iraq's new prime minister and president -- are Iran's closest allies in Iraq. Thousands of members of the United Iraqi Alliance, a Shiite-dominated slate that won almost half of the 8.5 million votes and will name the prime minister, spent decades in exile in Iran. Most of the militia members in its largest faction were trained in Shiite-dominated Iran...
posted by Postroad on Feb 14, 2005 - 59 comments

It's like deja vu all over again!

CNN's Nuke Plant Photos Identical for Both Iran and N. Korea! "Two stories posted in the last week on the CNN website, one on nukes in Iran last Wednesday, and another on nukes in North Korea on Saturday, both use the same aerial photograph of the same purported nuclear power plant! But one is supposed to be in Iran and the other is supposed to be in North Korea!"
posted by bas67 on Feb 14, 2005 - 85 comments

The Committee to Protect Bloggers

The Committee to Protect Bloggers recently launched their first campaign. In related news Joe Gordon has a new job (via CT).
posted by andrew cooke on Feb 6, 2005 - 4 comments

Iranians for peace

Pre-emptive protest: Iranians for peace "No war can contribute to the establishment of liberty and democracy in our country. 'Iranians for Peace' welcomes the opinions of Iranian people around the globe who are in opposition to war."
posted by hoder on Feb 2, 2005 - 17 comments

USAF playing cat and mouse game over Iran

USAF playing cat and mouse game over Iran and yes: there is no hard evidence that this is taking place. But we do recall what Bush had earlier said about the axis of evil and his warnings to Iran about nuke capability. "The U.S. Air Force is playing a dangerous game of cat and mouse with Iran's ayatollahs, flying American combat aircraft into Iranian airspace in an attempt to lure Tehran into turning on air defense radars, thus allowing U.S. pilots to grid the system for use in future targeting data, administration officials said. "We have to know which targets to attack and how to attack them," said one, speaking on condition of anonymity.
posted by Postroad on Jan 29, 2005 - 72 comments

We're all to blame.

We're all to blame. In January 2002, Scott Ritter called Iraq a "phantom threat" and warned us of Ahmed Chalabi's "dubious motivations" for fomenting a war based on phony intel. Now Ritter is saying that we're all responsible for Iraq, because we, as a public, bought into the unproven argument that Iraq had WMDs. In that light, how should we view the Iranian situation? Is it fair for the US to use its power to insist upon arguably hypocritical terms for a fellow signatary to the Non Proliferation Treaty? Doesn't Iran have legitimate rights for nuclear development? Shouldn't we demand proof of a nuclear weapons program before we even consider starting a conflict our military believes would most certainly escalate? The Bush administration says that "there's NO DOUBT that Iran continues a nuclear program"... an obvious lie. There is no proof of an Iranian nuclear weapons program. Period.
posted by insomnia_lj on Jan 27, 2005 - 100 comments

AntiyoungAmericansdyingfilter?

Draftfreedom --a new group applying their marketing and communication expertise to help prevent the draft. Take a look--maybe this new approach can get thru?
posted by amberglow on Jan 24, 2005 - 40 comments

Blogs help reform in Iran

Blogs contribute to political reform in Iran (New York Times): Former vice-president of Iran, Mohammad Ali Abtahi, said that he learned through the Internet about the huge gap between government officials and the younger generation. "We do not understand each other and cannot have a dialogue," he said. "As government officials, we receive a lot of confidential reports about what goes on in society. But I have felt that I learned a lot more about people and the younger generation by reading their Web logs and receiving about 40 to 50 e-mails every day. This is so different than reading about society in those bulletins from behind our desks."
posted by hoder on Jan 16, 2005 - 7 comments

Spreading democracy with death squads?

The Salvador Option --sending Special Forces teams to advise, support and possibly train Iraqi squads, to target Sunni insurgents and their sympathizers, even across the border into Syria, in imitation of our actions in El Salvador. It remains unclear, however, whether this would be a policy of assassination or so-called "snatch" operations, in which the targets are sent to secret facilities for interrogation. More here, including this: In Iraq, in fact, as in many other places where the United States has tried to train ethical armies to fight dirty wars, the Iraqi troops are tacitly expected to do what American troops won’t. A fundamental purpose of the upcoming elections on January 30 is to create democratic legitimacy for whatever extreme measures the newly organized military decides to take.
posted by amberglow on Jan 14, 2005 - 18 comments

No Java for you, my Iranian friend.

No Java for you, my Iranian friend.
posted by hoder on Dec 10, 2004 - 32 comments

Internet in Iran: a new report by NPR

Internet is not a luxury in Iran anymore (NPR)
posted by hoder on Dec 4, 2004 - 5 comments

We all should've known this before...

Criticize Iran? Obviously, you're with the Mossad. As it turns out, Al Jazeera is run by Americans and Zionists bent on discrediting Islam in the West, heightening tensions among Islamic countries, and obstructing President Khatami's Dialogue Among Civilizations initiative. Tehran Times has the scoop.
posted by ibmcginty on Dec 4, 2004 - 22 comments

Gulf not found

Google "Arabian Gulf" and you'll find that the gulf you are looking for does not exist. It seems that the ongoing ideological war between Iran and Iraq has escalated to the level of parodic error pages.
posted by mikrophon on Dec 2, 2004 - 18 comments

Photoshop helps

How photoshop helps "moral values" in Iran.
posted by hoder on Nov 27, 2004 - 33 comments

War

Fallujah in pictures. Graphic images of destruction and loss.
posted by four panels on Nov 15, 2004 - 64 comments

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