Wednesday, June 24, 2009

A letter from Tehran 

Sent to me by a friend, this is a letter from someone running an ashram in Iran (a brave task in and of itself.)
A letter from Iran: Please Help

Dear friends,

These days our hearts are bleeding, and we can not stop crying for the lives being lost so brutally in this land once again. People you see on the media are risking their lives for the most basic human right, freedom to be. This has been taken away from us in a violent and bloody manner one way or another for the past thirty years. Once you walk with people in protest, it is inevitable to feel the depth of this yearning and the dimension of the pain they have endured by having it suppressed decade after decade. We have lost brothers, sisters, friends, children, students, fellow activists, writers, poets, Sufis, yogis, homosexuals, Kurds, Turks, Baloochis, Jews, Armenians, Muslims, Assyrians, Bahais, and other so called �minorities� to this simple quest for the right to be and live as we are in our society. We have been jailed, whipped, and publically humiliated for simple things like listening to music, socializing with the other sex, having parties, wearing jeans, growing hair, not covering our hair and body with the Islamic dark dress code. Our women, not our men, have been stoned to death for having extra-marital affairs. In our legal system women are officially treated as second class citizens, being worth half of a man�s voice when it comes to submitting evidence to a court of law as a witness. They can easily be divorced by men, but can not divorce as easily, and have no right to their children after divorce. They can not leave the country without written permission of their husbands/fathers.

Friends, the list is as endless as the degrees we differ from one and other. We have been suffering from this systematic utterly inhuman intolerance being forced at every level of our society down to our own families. No wonder young and old, men and women are out there walking surrounded by heavily armed and aggressive police, hit squads, and snipers on the roof shooting them down at random.

We are confronting religious intolerance and fantaicism of its worst kind in this land. Past thirty years tens of thousands have been lost, raped, and jailed for standing tall against this current. Its vibrations of hatred, war, and aggression have reached your home anywhere in the globe. There is no doubt that we are a global family being interrelated to one another closer than we know. This, we have experienced the hard way past few years.

I am writing to beg for your attention and assistance in any way possible. An innocent, peaceful, historic momentum, unprecedented in recent history, has come alive in our world that is being brutally put down with violence, lies, and dirty politics for power and riches. You, no matter where you are, have been inflicted by the evil nature of this current going round in our globe.

My brothers and sisters, come together in any way you can. Join the arms of our innocent people whose blood is being shed for peace and human rights which you may be blessed with elsewhere. Our hands are stretched out, reaching out for your support from outside. We are confronting a formidable power as ancient and infectious as hatred, tyranny, intolerance, prejudice and racism. We need your help.

If your heart prompts, please send this letter to your local newspaper, members of parliament, offices of your country�s Prime Minister or President. Let it be heard what we are facing and how important it is that we as the human body must shoulder this together. I can not do it alone, but we can do it.

We as a nation are pleading desperately to the world that we MUST not recognize this regime legitimate. We need to use all our strength and unity to pressure it to leave the office before our voice is shut down.

I hope you join us in prayers and firm peaceful steps towards a global village where we all can live in peace and harmony.

With love to all,
[name redacted]

Updates this morning from Tehran via Gateway Pundit show increased repression, shooting around the Majlis. I have been following Twitter feeds of ABC news reporters Lara Setrakian and Jim Sciutto since the beginning, and they confirm a massive crackdown going on at this moment. I agree with Mitch on the comparisons to Solidarity in Poland, but the key there was how long it lasted. You needed years to move Solidarity to power. It will take almost that long in Iran. (I now have the one pre-condition Obama should ask for: He will meet with Ahmadinejad only if he gets a meeting as well with Mousavi. There is a parallel there too with Poland.)

We can debate weenies all we like, but let's not lose sight of the larger story here. Meanwhile, don't forget to go see The Stoning of Soraya M this weekend (theater listing).