Wednesday, June 28, 2006

A short report from European Parliament

1-Several European deputies talked about human rights issues in Iran and twice Jahanbeglou's name was mentioned.

2-Iran ambassy had send a representative to attend the conference.He was surrondered by many Iranains from opposition. He said Europe always say what Iran will lose but once she should think what Europe will lose...not only 24 billion dollar business but she will lose our confidence.

3-Several Azeri seperatists were present and asked questions about how Europe will back Azeri nationalists demands!

4-British deputies were tough on Iran and one of them said we can not HAVE CIVILISED
dialogue with Tehran's regime.

Monday, June 26, 2006

A Survey about Iranian Blogs in Persian

Dear friends,here is a survey, in Persian, about Iranian blogs.

دوستان گرامی لطفابه پرسشنامه زیر درباره وبلاگهای ایرانی پاسخ دهید


Sunday, June 25, 2006

European Parliament: Dialogue with Iran

Tommorow, Monday European Parliament will organize a conference about dialogue with Iran, human rights...all participants (as far as I know) are European Union deputies or officials. Mr.Gahler, Christian Democrat deputy from Germany, is the main man behind this conference. He is a member of European Parliament delegation for Iran.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

How Iran Might answer the West

Time magazine:Listen to who...Ahmadinejad, Larijani....

But the Iranians feel they're in a position of strength
Iran's leaders believe the strategic balance has shifted in their favor since the previous talks with the Europeans. Rising world oil prices and the difficulties faced by the U.S. in Iraq have increased Tehran's leverage. Iran is also aware that the consensus reached in Vienna by European leaders and China remains fragile; while the Bush Administration insists that no military option is off the table, for example, Russia's foreign minister Sergei Lavrov said the agreement rules out the use of military force against Iran "in any circumstances." These factors could embolden Tehran's negotiating stance in the hope of extracting further concessions......

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Nahavandi's new book is to READ!

Houshang Nahavandi, former Minister of Shah and university professor in Paris,has published a new book: Le Choc des Ambitions 750 pages English version will be out in October. You will learn a lot about iranian history. Most of the book is about Pahlavi's dynasty.We learn about Farah, Shah,Savak ( Iranian CIA), power struggle....
US ambassy hostage taking...EXCELLENT

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Climbdown as Hamas agrees to Israeli state

Guardian:Hamas has made a major political climbdown by agreeing to sections of a document that recognise Israel's right to exist and a negotiated two-state solution, according to Palestinian leaders.

I would like to know the reactions in Iran. Another "friend" is lost for Islamic Republic or Hamas attitude may encourage Iranians to become rational too?

Monday, June 19, 2006

Fascinating Photo

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Shanghai Summit: A World to Catch!

Iranian President Gives Football Lessons

Thanks to Iranian.com I got it :CLICK HERE

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

"Don't you care if your husband takes a second wife?"

Iran Bloggers back women's protest:an eyewitness called the confrontation between the women police officers and protesters "very interesting" - and described one protester being chased by a policewoman, shouting back at her: "Don't you care if your husband takes a second wife?"

McCain on Iran

The WashingtonNote:On Iran, McCain said that if he was President, he would go to Putin in Russia and Hu in China and make sure that they understood in every sense that if they continued to oppose American efforts to sanction iran's nuclear weapons efforts that their respective ties with the United States would come under tangible, real stress. I personally wasn't convinced by McCain's views on Iran, but I do believe that he realizes that taking the wrong step here or there in this brewing crisis could dramatically impact the power order in the world. He seemed to imply that America could not succeed in its objectives with Iran without getting Russia and China in line with the U.S.READ MORE

Monday, June 12, 2006

Photos: women's protest & violence

Go to Kosoof for more

A Swedish Blogger Back from Iran with News!

Do not miss this fascinating blog.Censored Magazines

Sunday, June 11, 2006

No Ticket for Many Iranians!

According to some news many Iranian could not find or buy ticket to go watching Iran's first match against Mexico.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

ASM, an Iranian run Educational Center in USA

Thanks to Washington Prism article, I found out Moghadam family who has started and managed a top Educational Center in USA, despite ups& downs of life.Most courses are about IT.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

A Logo for World Cup

Thanks to Iranian.com:

Photos: No Break for Rafsanjani

According to Aftab news Rafsanjani could not deliver his speech in Qom. Some chanted
slogans such as death to anti Velayate faghi(Spiritual leader). He was forced to leave the conference place.He was used to be called strong man of regime but in recent months he tries to survive!

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Give Peace a Chance!

I hope Iranian government makes a compromise and accept to suspend enrichment. Fred Halliday, great academic, told me (during an interview for WashingtonPrism, that Iranian leaders in last one hundered years at important moments, made miscalculations.From Reza Shah (ignored Russian invasion) to Ayatholah Khomeyni ( continued war after 1982 to conquer Iraq).I really wish this time REASON wins.PLEASE!

Black & White Brain of Shirin Ebadi! We are lucky she was not Afghan!

Mrs Shirin Ebadi, Peace Nobel laureate, symbolized Iranian culture: Black & White thinking. She, who believes in reforms and not revolution, did not take part in presidential election and boycotted that. She felt no difference between reformist Moin and Rafsanjani or Ahmadinejad! Now she says she is an Iranian and as Iranian she will defend Iran against any foreign intervention. We are lucky she was not afghan then she defended Taliban regime against American forces and afghan Northern Alliance. Imagine she had been born in Cambodia, and then she would have fought against Vietnam to protect Red Khmers in 70's!

Friday, June 02, 2006

Women's Struggle to Watch a Football Game!

Photo:Omid Salehi Source: Zannevesht Blog
They wrote their slogans on their scarves.They were not allowed to watch the match and even some got beaten up.............

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Remember Jailed Journalists in Iran

Source is RSF ( Reporters Without Borders)Iran (12)

28 May 2006 - Ali Hamed Iman, Shams Tabriz

27 May 2006 - Vahid Dargahi, Avay Ardabil

27 May 2006 - Ali Nazari, Araz

27 May 2006 - Reza Kazemi, Araz

26 May 2006 - Ourouj Amiri, freelance journalist

25 May 2006 - Amin Movahedi, freelance journalist

23 May 2006 - Mana Neyestani, Iran

23 May 2006 - Mehrdad Qassemfar, Iran

28 April 2006 - Ramin Jahanbeglou, Indépendant

23 January 2006 - Elham Afrotan, Tamadone Hormozgan

23 January 2006 - Mohessen Dorstkary, Tamadone Hormozgan

31 October 2002 - Hossein Ghazian, Norooz

T Shirts for World Cup

The Pursuit of Pleasure: Drugs and Simultant in Iranian History, 1500-1900

Rudi Matthee is Professor of History at the University of Delaware. He has published recently “ The Pursuit of Pleasure: Drugs and Simultant in Iranian History, 1500-1900”.
Our interview with Dr.Matthee is based on his book 1 and articles that he, kindly, made available for Washington Prism.Interview was published in Farsi in WashingtonPrism.

You wrote in an article 2 that conspiracy theory, a very popular theory in Iran which speculates that foreigners are manipulating the country’s affairs, is a 20th century theory, and it did not exist in the 19th century in Iran. What were the reasons which gave rise to this theory in the early 20th century in Iran?

First of all, I think it is true that there was no such a theory until the late 19th or early 20th century, but I will say that the context of Iranian history and its social ambiance was a fertile breeding ground for such a theory. Iranians were suspicious about foreigners coming to Iran. If these foreigners claimed that they had come for curiosity or to learn about Iranian culture, Iranians would not have believed them. Rather, Iranian were convinced that such foreigners had hidden motives.

Another important element is the realisation that, Iranian culture is complex; it's actually built on ambiguity but it also has a tendency to see the world in stark dichotomies, everything is either black or white. In the pre-Islamic period, there was good and bad, but with Shi’ism it became Yasid/Imam Hussein, and then, in the contemporary period, the Shah/ Khomeini. But an influential event happened in the early 20th century: a secret accord was reached, an Anglo-Iranian agreement that would have given the British control over Iran. The agreement, of course, was suspended after the Majlis refused to ratify it when various forces mounted enormous opposition to it. In the early 20th century, Iranian students came back from Europe, especially Berlin, greatly influenced by anti-Britain propaganda in Germany. After World War I, Germany was present in Iran and spread anti-British propaganda there, too. I explained that these are some of the elements that explain the emergence of a conspiracy theory, but in order to understand more of the reasons, more research must be done. Ahmad Ashraf has done great work on this issue, and he also believes that a conspiracy theory is a 20th century creation.

During the Safavid dynasty, there were clerics who declared, during the absence of the Hidden imam, that they must guide the Moslem community, rather than the Shah. Can we say that Khomeini’s theocracy (Velayate Fagihe) has its roots in this idea?

The answer is both yes and no. There were clerics who said that Iran was a Shi’te country but that the Shah drank and his behaviour was not Islamic. For them, he could not be a good shepherd for a Moslem community. A few clerics wanted to be consulted more by the Shah regarding the country’s affairs. But the Shah’s authority was never questioned. At the end of the day, the Shah was there to lead country and Ulama Moslem’s spiritual life. I think Khomeini’s idea is a new one.

During the Qajar period, we saw clerics mobilize against tobacco consumption but never against opium. What are the reasons for this?

For the answer, we should look back before Qajar’s period. Opium was deeply integrated into Iranian social and daily life. People consumed opium each morning in order to be in a good mood to go to work. There was no mention of either opium or tobacco in the Koran or Hadith. Opium functioned in Iranian society the way that wine does in French society. Many French travellers noticed this, and observed that Iranians didn’t exaggerate their opium consumption. In the Qajar period, the Shah allowed an English company to have a monopoly on the production and distribution of tobacco. Suddenly, tobacco, which was a very important thing to people, was controlled by foreigners, unbelievers, and it came to be considered impure. Of course, the economic side of this affair was important, too.

During the Safavid period, wine was drunk by the elite, while the masses consumed opium. In the Qajar period, can we consider that, for some Iranians, wine consumption became a sign that they were accepting modernity and rejecting tradition? In other words, did wine take on a cultural value?

I believe that it did. In the Safavid period, wine was consumed by the elite, and the masses drank water, Doogh. During the Qajar period, the upper middle class started to drink wine and other alcohol. There are other groups, such as the Sufis, which existed centuries before the Qajar, but during that period they were much more prevalent. They were drinking wine to defy traditional clerics, and their ideas are well present in Iranian poems such as Hafez writings.

At the beginning of the Safavaid, clerics were greatly subordinate to the Shahs. Even they justified Shah Ismail’s drinking. At the end of the Safavid’s dynasty clerics became a far more influential force in the country. How can we explain this evolution?

It had to do with the evolution of the state and politics. The Safavid was tribal and semi-tribal at the beginning, with unIslamic behaviour such as heavy drinking. Then the Safavaid shahs came to power and become urbanised. Their main revenue came from agriculture and trade. They started to marginalise the tribal forces, like the Qizelbash. Moreover, they became dependent on clerics, and on Persian speakers who were bureaucrats and who knew how to run the country, as they sought a new legitimacy. The Ulama played an important role by teaching people about Shi’isme and legitimate dynasty.

She is Iranian and She Plays Great Tennis

Aravane Rezai is a 19 years old Iranian tennis player in Roland Gaross in France. She
is now at third round.According to Figaro, family borrowed money to send her to tennis tournement.