Friday, November 26, 2004

Iran bars National Geographic over gulf’s name

Sales of magazines, reporting banned until atlas is changed

TEHRAN - Iran banned National Geographic reporters and sales of the magazine until it corrects an atlas it published using a disputed name for waters off the Islamic Republic’s south coast.
Iran insists on calling the waters the “Persian Gulf.” However, the saltwater body also touches the shores of eastern Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, Qatar and Bahrain. Many people in these other states refer to the waters as the “Arabian Gulf.”
Iran’s culture ministry said the atlas published by U.S.-based National Geographic labelled the waters as the “Persian Gulf,” but also included the “Arabian Gulf” name in parentheses on the map.
“As a reaction, we are banning their journalists from entering Iran and the distribution of their publications until they correct this,” the culture ministry’s foreign media director Mohammad Hossein Khoshvaght told Reuters.
The ministry also said the atlas labels three islands in the Gulf claimed by the United Arab Emirates as “occupied by Iran.” Iran insists Abu Musa and Greater and Lesser Tunb are part of its sovereign territory.“We consider this a clear violation of U.N. documents and antagonistic towards Iran’s national interests,” Khoshvaght said. “National Geographic should immediately correct this big mistake and this strange move.”
The National Geographic’s chief cartographer Allen Carroll (email:http://us.f520.mail.yahoo.com/ym/Compose?To=acarroll@ngs.org) defended the use of both names.
“We do, and will continue, to recognize ’Persian Gulf’ as the primary name,” he said on National Geographic’s Web site.
“But we want people searching for “Arabian Gulf” to be able to find what they’re looking for and not to confuse it with the nearby Arabian Sea,” he added.




The culture ministry has previously also objected to the use of the compromise term “The Gulf” used by some foreign news agencies

Monday, November 22, 2004

Singers in exile


Not only many of Iran’s writers and political/human-rights activists have found living in Iran dangerous for their lives and hence immigrated to other countries, mostly USA, but also our most popular singers and musicians have left the country. Most of this artists in exile live in Los Angeles, the city which has the most number of Persian Americans. Most of these have escaped Iran in he eve of 1979 Islamic fundamentalist revolution. If they didn’t do so, they could face execution under the theocratic government because fundamentalist Islam regards music as a great sin, or like what happened to Iranian legendary female vocalist, Googoosh, or dancer Mohammed Khordadian, be banned from exiting the country for up to 20 years! Although some musicians and singers are currently active inside Iran, but they face great deal of trouble and censorship by the government for their music not be like what Islam considers Ghena ( corrupted music). Who determines what music is corrupted? A bunch of old, ultra religious, untalented, unsuccessful and prejudiced music veterans who have no way of making money other than taking part in this disgusted censorship business. They do it in an organization called Music Council which is a part of culture (read censorship) ministry and controls any music which is to be published in the country. No pop album can pass the barrier of this council before it’s creators being forced to remove some parts of it. Many albums stay in the line of publication qualification for months and even years.

It was these problems which forced at least 2 of after-revolutionary singers of Iran’s younger generation (Shadmehr Aghili and Arshia) to migrate to the north America and continue their carrier there. When these singers migrate there, they can make and sing whatever they like and suffer no censorship but they can’t legally publish their CDs inside Iran. So they sell a lot less copies, at most 20,000 of each new CD, considering that the last album of Shadmehr Aghili inside Iran, sold over a million copies, the difference in the revenue of the singer will be clear. The other problem they complain is that costs of living in the north America is much more than in Iran, so no Iranian singer would like to migrate, should there be no censorship in Iran. The pop albums published inside Iran are of poor quality and have nothing interesting. I am telling this to you as a freelance Persian poet and songwriter and I would never let any of my lyrics be song by any of legal pop singers living inside Iran, not only because of the poor quality of their work, but also because for every word of the lyric, a permission should be given from Culture Ministry’s Poetry Council and thus censorships again apply. For your lyric to get that permission, you shouldn’t talk directly about love affairs, kissing and hugging in it. If you use sexual oriented words, not only the lyric will never get the permission, but also you can be charged for fostering immorality and be sent to prison for it.

Anyway majority of the Iranian youth only listen to Los Angeles created illegal music. They get it without paying for the CDs and usually from the internet. Or someone may buy a copy from Dubai and enjoying lack of copyright law in Iran, Replicate it and sell it in an underground market for a price less than a tenth of the original CD per copy. Therefore although 10-20 millions of people may have listened a popular new album, but only 10-20 thousand may have really bought the CD and paid for it.

The wealthy minority of musical fans, can pay something to our pop stars via going to concerts. These concerts are held all around the world, from Los Angeles to Glendale to Stockholm to Hamburg to Tokyo… and wherever there is a considerable number of Persian immigrants. The most poplar of these are the concerts held in neighboring countries of Iran, because many pop music lover Iran residents can also go to those concerts if they can afford the costs of Visa, Ticket and Hotel. The neighboring countries also enjoy attracting many tourists who can’t see their favorite singer’s concerts in their own country. The most popular of these neighbors are respectively Dubai(UAE), Turkey, Tajikistan and even newly freed Afghanistan! This is how national money flows to the pockets of foreigner countries and also many of the fans who cannot get outside the country, because of financial or legal problems, have no chance to see their idles on the stage.

Shemshad(8/9/2003)

Friday, November 12, 2004

7TH CONGRESS OF ZOROASTRIAN AND IRANIAN CULTURAL STUDIES

Brussels, Belgium(Part 4)A Gist of PapersAli A. Jafarey
Farid, Fatane (Formerly archeologist and anthropologist, Iranian Ministry of Culture and Arts, presently a dress designer for a well-known company, Los Angeles, U.S.A.) Woman in the Good Religion: History shows that patriarchy in Mesopotamia and neighborhood had turned the people into warlike, and that frequent wars and conquests had brought misery to the defeated nations. Matriarchy on the Iranian Plateau had promoted peace, stability, economy and trade. At the same time, the Indo-Iranians had a moderate patriarchy that held women closely high next to men. Then Zarathushtra came with his Divine Doctrine that recognizes absolute equality of man and woman in the human society, from household to government. Woman is the "Lady of the House" just as man is the "Lord of the House." She can be elected as the Ruler of a nation. She can choose the man, whom she knows well and loves, as her partner in the fruitful life. The same holds true of religious affairs. She can be as high in religious knowledge as any person, and she can officiate as the Head Officiant at religious ceremonies. Founded more than 3,700 years ago, the Good Religion stands very high in human rights and the equality of man and woman. (Ms. Farid based her speech on the citations from the Gathas, the Gathic Supplements and the Later Avesta. She showed and explained over 30 slides of women, from the bas-reliefs, gold and silver vessels, coins, seals and carpets, from the Achaemenian to the Sassanian times.) Golshani, Vandidad (Physician by profession both in Iran and UK, poet, writer and Senior Member of the Zarathushtrian Assembly branch in London). The Sweet Dream: The speaker recited a poem in which he described how his Sweet Dream has been turned into reality as a practicing Zoroastrian. Then followed his speech: The Message of Zarathushtra is based on Wisdom, Consideration, Free Will, Equality, Progress, Peace, Prosperity, Progress, and above all, true mental and physical Happiness that lead one to God and to serve well the creation. It is a unique doctrine. (The speech was punctuated all along with citations from the Persian poetry that made it typically zestful Persian style.)Jafarey, Ali A (U.S.A.). Achaemenians Traces in "Shahnameh," the Book of Kings: The Shahnameh, based on the "History of Iran" manuscripts from the caveman to the downfall of the Sassanians, strangely does not mention the Achaemenian period. The reason: The disaster following the invasion of Alexander the Macedonian and its aftermath made the Iranians forget the Achaemenian kings with the exception of two - Darius the Great and Darius III. Furthermore, the great reliance of the Sassanians on the historical narrations from the Avesta, made them to connect their dynasty to the Kiyanians. Therefore we see Darius the Great as the great grandson of King Goshtasp the Kiyanian. Yet Ferdowsi begins his Shahnameh with "Be-nâm-e Khodâvand-e Jân-o-Kherad - In the Name of the Lord of Life and Intellect;" a reflection of Ahura Mazda so often written by the Achaemenians on their bas-reliefs. The next trace is the term "Shâhanshâh," invented by the Achaemenians as the title of all Kiyanian kings. Persepolis is known as "Takht-e Jamshid" and its construction in the heart of Pars, as the seat of the Empire, is ascribed to the legendary Jamshid. Other traces include the Nowruz audience, the multinational empire, seafaring, and the learning of writing from non-Iranians. Names were forgotten with the exception of two, but the tales of the Achaemenians, from the beginning to the fall of the Empire, can be traced well from the History of Kiyanians.(Continued in Part 5)Ali A. JafareyBuena Park, California20 Aban 3742 ZRE = 10 November 2004

Monday, November 08, 2004

Another Honor For Free Persians

On Monday morning when SpaceShipOne climbed 368,000 feet into space to claimthe $10 million Ansari X Prize, Anousheh Ansari, founder and CEO of TelecomTechnologies, also climbed one step closer to her dream of going into spaceas well.The Ansari X Prize is officially named after Amir and Anousheh Ansari ofDallas TX, to reflect their generous multi-million dollar donation to theworld's first privately funded space program. Both Anousheh and Amir Ansari,who were born in Iran, have always! had a dream of traveling into space andbelieve that their donation will help others realize this goal.Mrs. Ansari is the perfect example, even in the words of the Arab 7thcentury prophet Mohammed, of "Persians that aspire to reach the heavens insearch of knowledge and wisdom." Indeed, Mrs. Ansari is a role model for allIranians and Iranian Americans today.Born in 1968, Mrs. Anousheh moved from Iran to the US at the age of 16. Shestudied electrical and computer engineering at George Mason University,earning her masters degree in Electrical Engineering at The GeorgeWashington University.Early in her career, Mrs. Ansari worked for MCI and COMSAT specializing onarchitectural designs for SS7 and ISDN networks. She authored numeroustechnical papers and has two patents for her work on Automated OperatorServices and Wireless Service Node. She also served as representative at theAmerican National Standard Institute Technical Subcommittees.! Many recognize her from the cover of Working Woman magazine, announcin gher the winner of the 2000 National Entrepreneurial Excellence award, andwinner of the 1999 Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year for theTechnology and Communications category.In 1994, she and her husband founded their company Telecom Technologies inRichardson Texas. TTI, a supplier of hi-tech softswitch based solutions fornetwork and service providers, was estimated worth $600 million in 2001.Today, Mrs. Ansari and her husband live in Plano Texas. Their names will godown in history as the first persons to help realize commercial spaceflight, reaching up to the heavens, a dream Persians have long had since thedays of Maragheh, Samarkand, and Jundi Shapur.Mrs. Ansari's story is a stark reminder to us all of the impeccable talentswomen in Iran have, and that if provided with the freedom and the necessarytools for growth, what celestial heights they can obtain.M! rs. Ansari's story should prove an example that in the new millenium, thevalue of women is measured by the height of their outstanding achievements,and not by the length of their Hijab, and size or tightness of their dress.Let us try to appreciate what the women of Persia have to offer to ourcivilization in the dawn of the space age millenium.

Saturday, November 06, 2004

About Iranian Great Poet

Also spelled HAFIZ, in full MOHAMMAD SHAMS OD-DIN SHIRAZI, he was one of the finest lyric poets of Persia. He was born in 1325 in the city of Shiraz. Hafez received a classical religious education, lectured on Koran and other theological subjects ("Hafez" designates one who has learned the Koran by heart), and wrote commentaries on religious classics. As a court poet he enjoyed the patronage of several rulers of Shiraz.
About 1368-69 & when he was in his 40’s, Hafez fell out of favour at the court and did not regain his position until 20 years later, just before his death. In his poetry, there are many echoes of historical events as well as biographical descriptions and details of life in Shiraz. One of the guiding principles of his life was Sufism, the Islamic mystical movement that demanded of its adherents complete devotion to the pursuit of union with the ultimate reality.
Hafez's principal verse form, one that he brought to a perfection never achieved before or since, was the ghazal, a lyric poem of 6 to 15 couplets linked by unity of subject and symbolism rather than by a logical sequence of ideas. Traditionally the ghazal had dealt with love and wine, motifs that, in their association with ecstasy and freedom from restraint, lent themselves naturally to the _expression of Sufi ideas. Hafez's achievement was to give these conventional subjects a freshness and subtlety that completely relieves his poetry of tedious formalism. An important innovation credited to Hafez was the use of the ghazal instead of the qasida in panegyrics. Hafez also reduced the panegyric element of his poems to a mere one or two lines, leaving the remainder of the poem for his ideas.
The extraordinary popularity of Hafez's poetry in all Persian-speaking lands stems from his simple and often colloquial though musical language, free from artificial virtuosity, and his unaffected use of homely images and proverbial expressions. Above all, his poetry is characterized by love of humanity, contempt for hypocrisy and mediocrity, and an ability to universalise everyday experience and to relate it to the mystic's unending search for union with God.
His appeal in the West is indicated by the numerous translations of his poems. Hafez is most famous for his legendary collection known as Divan. Many European scholars, in particular those from Russia & Germany, have done extensive research on his works. The great man, perhaps the finest poet the world has ever seen, died in 1389 in his hometown. His mausoleum in Shiraz is visited by thousands of his devoted fans every year.

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Congratularions!


Persianliberals.tk wishes to present it's warmest congratulations for the reelection of the Liberator angel of the world and the number one fighter of terrorism, George W Bush. We hope he will proceed the war against terrorism and fostering democrasy in the middle east. this time it will be our nation's turn to be liberated by the coalition army and we are eagorly looking forward to our D Day.

Monday, November 01, 2004

Not Only Hoe Factory, But Also RAPIST Factory!

First of all, I want to apologize for my long term absence in this blog. Since my Persian weblog is filtered by Islamic republic telecom and is no more available for Iranians living inside Iran, I have no motivation for writing in Persian. That is the reason from now on, I will be writing here more often than ever before. I am not sure weather you have read a couple of my previous articles titled “Today’s Iran, A Prostitute Factory” and “Zahra Kazemi(the Iranian Canadian journalist who was arrested trying to take photos from Iran’s Evin prison and finally got killed in custody) Was raped Before Being murdered”. Today I want to add another tale to sad sex stories about Iran. About a couple of months ago, two guys were arrested in the vicinity of Pakdasht near Tehran, for raping, killing, dismembering and burning 21 (some sources say 29) schoolboys aged from 7 to 10. The killers were workers of a brick making factory in Pakdasht. They were single and aged 25, almost the exact same age of Islamic republic government. The main convict, named Bijeh, said he have been raped when he was a young boy and that was why he hated children so much and committed those brutal acts to so many of them. He have been previously arrested but the local police because of raping children but since there is now law in Iran defending children(and women alike) he was released on bail and with the help of some friends in the police, he easily got rid of the case. That have became the main reason both independent newspapers and families of the victims say the main guilty is the local police for releasing such a brute and failing to arrest him until he killed so many kids. Some of those kids were children of Afghan refugees living illegally in Iran and because of their illegal settlement, they failed to go to cops looking after their missed little boys, fearing being deported to Afghanistan. Some opposition analysts say the fact that Bijeh, the rapist and murderer of 21 little boys turn out to be such a brute is because he was born and grown up in the Islamic republic regime, where any relationship between boys and girls, including talking, is prohibited and every where, even buses are like toilets divided to man-woman sections. I have also heard gay relationships and anal sex is very common in Qom’s Islamic madrasahs (Islamic Schools), where all people are young boys who study and live there and no woman is allowed to get close to there.
Just before the story of Bijeh, another man was arrested, tried and finally hanged for abducting and raping several little boys and girls, in another vicinity in the country of Tehran. He, dubbed the Spider Man by the media, didn’t kill any on the victims who were mostly preteen boys and girls but he abducted them, brought them to some vacant place, abused them and stole their jewels if they had any, and then released them. The more horrible fact was that he was married and he himself had a couple of young kids.
The first famous serial rapist-killer, was 28 years old Gholam Reza Khoshroo. About 6 years ago, He was nicknamed by the media, the bat of the night. He, masqueraded a passenger carrier, (since in Iran, the majority don’t afford to own a car and most of women don’t even have the driver’s license, and unemployment is very high, many people use their old car, mostly Peikan, to do a taxi driver’s job and transport people through the city but since they don’t have the taxi and it’s license, they are called passenger carriers),in the dark of the night he lured young girls and women to give them a ride to their home, and in the middle of they way he suddenly attacked the women, wounded her with a knife and then raped her, stole her jewelry and money and released her body somewhere. He kept doing this until he took 19 victims and yet was not caught by the police. The cops where highly criticized at the aftermath of the crimes not only for failing to catch him, but also for not declaring to the public as soon as they found out some passenger carrier is raping and killing his female passengers. Their failure to declare it, was just like the Chinese health authorities failure to declare the news of Sars epidemic. They both wanted the public not to experience panic and not to criticize them for not doing their job right. That is what always happens in dictatorship governments. People are not to find out about the dirtiest outcomes of regime’s malfunction, no matter how big they are. After Khoshroo’s arrest and TV interview and finally execution, several events happened of young men trying to imitate what he did. It finally ended in woman’s fear to travel with any car which is not a taxi are the driver of which looks like bad guys. And since most of the girls and women don’t have a car and not even the driving skill, the troubles are doubled for them. Maybe you say these events are also common in the western countries but I tell you that it is almost a daily event in Tehran that some girls are tricked, groped and if they are fortunate, released by immoral guys.
All the rapist-killers mentioned above were people born in obscure cities of poor regions of Iran who have migrated to Tehran for finding jobs. But there were also some other serial killer-rapist bands who were native of their own cities. One was the famous Said Hanai, a 40 year old married, religious looking man in Iran’s holiest city, Mashhad. He systematically found, duped, raped and killed 19 women in the holy city. Almost all of the women have been known for prostitution. Again he was left alone by the police to kill one woman after the other but this time the cops didn’t try to hide the news from the media. Some believe the cops, controlled indirectly by the unelected supreme leader, Khamenei, deliberately let him do his job so that the holy city would become clean from prostitution, the charged denied by cops. But there is more allegeable news that during his trial, Hanai was ensured and supported by some members of the fundamentalist governing mafia and vowed to be saved from execution. He himself denied having raped the women and claimed that he killed them just for doing the order of the God, but dissecting of the victims bodies revealed they were raped before being killed. If you have read the former articles mentioned in the beginning of this, you know that according to me, an Islamic religious man can never avoid fucking a woman, while he can, because of being so sex hungry and believing that women are created for men’s pleasure.
Another native serial rapist band, was the scorpion band in Tehran. They were some native Tehranian young guys who abducted, abused and released about 25 young girls and women, a couple of years ago. They were also unemployed and single and finally were caught and hung. It is only the cases of serial raping-killing which finds it’s way to media. In fact, it is hard to find a young girl who have never been abused, groped or harshly insulted with sexual words in her life. That is the main reason almost all boys and girls hate each other in today’s Iran. If it wasn’t for easily accessible sex, no guy would get married. For women, marriage is a source of making a living and having security in life because Iranian girls are not trained for either defending themselves, or making money. All they learn is making food, cleaning house and changing a kid’s diapers. Although over 60 percent of Iranian university graduates are female, but not much of them find their way to the employment market and almost all of the ones who get a job, satisfy to lowest positions and receiving orders from men who are usually less educated than them. They hate men and guys, because of years of being harmed both verbally and physically by them. All this leads to a very high divorce rate in today’s Iran, over 30 percent of marriages lead to divorce. Due to hating guys and wanting to stay physically virgin till finding the ideal man for marriage, which can take until the girl is over 30, most girls satisfy their desires with lesbian acts. Just go to Yahoo’s user-created voice chat rooms and see almost all lesbo rooms are created by Iranians.(you might need to know some Persian to find it out) so that’s it in Iran: girls go to girls, and guys, who are mostly unemployed, uneducated and too poor to get married, have to rape! If they cannot find a hot girl, they try to find a kid, and no low protects either women or children against rapists.
The most horrible event happened very recently, was impregnation of the 13 year old Kurdian Iranian girl, named Zhila Izady, by her 15 year old brother! The boy was condemned to 150 flog strikes but the girl was condemned to Rajm(Sangsar). I will tell you about what Rajm is in another post. The girl’s verdict was finally converted to imprisonment after international pressure and intervention of International Amnesty but she was allegedly flogged 50 strikes in jail. Iranian guys even rape their own sisters! And the cases of family rapes are a lot more common that this one. This is the only one which lead to impregnation and was finally discovered. I can tell you hundreds of these rape and sexual crime stories which found their ways to the media. Many more have happened which due to Iranians’ nature of hiding the bitter truth, didn’t get out. The things like which were done by American priests are so common in Iran that they are not considered crime at all! So whenever you are, no matter man or woman, if you meet an Iranian guy, be wary not to get alone with him, or you are very likely to e raped or at least groped! Don’t laugh, it is the ultimate truth!

Shemshad(10/31/2004)