where are the ones, who were singing Yare Dabestani فریدون فروغی یار دبستانی more than 3 years ago? what happend to them who are not imprisoned, who had not fled? what are they all doing now?
one possible answer
my dear friend D. from a city next to Tehran and me from Munich
after exchanging youtube links – D. sent me Fereydoon Foroughi – Khak فریدون فروغی – خاک – in return I sent him Fereydon Foroughi’s Yare Dabestani فریدون فروغی یار دبستانی
one of our nightly chats … “copy – paste”
D: Yare Dabestani is amazing!!! We always sang it during protests 2009-10
I miss those days…
… yeah. You know what he is singing: this land is my breath… My warm blood is pure (in farsi it sounds very beautiful)
I always ask myself, how did Gandhi, Mandela or Martin Luther King Jr organize people for their cause? Why can’t we organize mass protests in Iran- like they did in Egypt or Tunisia?
What is the use of people pouring onto the streets just because their hungry? Even then they won’t care much about democracy or freedom of speech… The majority of Iranians are religious, prejudiced and don’t read books …
me: i’ve been thinking about it for more than 3 years now .. trying to find the key .. as there IS a key, but we haven’t found it yet … Are Iranians more depressive, fatalistic? Less willing to fight?? Too willing to suffer??? Not willing to share the same opinion as another Iranian ( 3 exile Iranians in one room makes 4 different opinions)? Waiting for the others to start/to know what to do??? Iranians DID organize mass protests, but then withdraw from the streets .. What e.g. Egyptians did not (a Tunesian friend of my daughter felt sure that this is the reason .. ) (Egyptians or Tunesians or Americans do not read more – this can’t be the key )
I just don’t know .. I wish so much I did …
D: Your observation of Iranians is quite accurate. And yes, they are fatalistic- it has roots in Shiism and Islamic mysticism. I am sure you have heard of Iranians’ belief in “Faal Hafez”, they randomly open the book and read a poem by Hafez and try to find out about their future. They also believe in Imam Zaman (The Messiah), so you often hear people saying that only he can solve our problems. But in my opinion the most important factor is the IRI’s powerful propaganda machine, they spread religious superstition and spread fear and kill hope… You have to live in Iran to know what I mean…
And they withdrew quickly… It kills me to see how easily they give up on their struggle for just about any cause
me: Akhee D. joon, this is exactly what I’m trying to find out WHY they give up so easily too soon … Fear from the IRI’s powermisuse is one reason, for sure, but there have been regimes all over the world (none of them lasting forever) killing their own people .. It might be the combination of misuse of religious feelings and fear …
D: One reason is Iranian’s deep rooted historical frustration. If you take a look at the history of Iranians’ struggle for freedom and democracy over the past century you will realize why they tend to give up easily. First there was the Constitutional Movement (or Nehzat-e Mashrooteh), a new generation of educated Iranians who had come in close contact with Europe and modernism tried to import the western democratic model but they were suppressed by the king, then there was Mosadegh, this great man, who nationalized oil industry but then there was the American coup and he was removed from power and his reforms did not continue. After that there was the 1978 revolution and people hoped to find freedom at last but these backward mullahs confiscated the revolution and happened what happened. So that is why you often hear Iranians saying: “What if a worse government comes to power after we overthrow this one?” I really believe that this factor is very important, Iranians have become pessimistic due to numerous failures and frustrations.
me: Yes, this sounds as if this is the main point .. What comes after this regime ..
Mosadegh was toppled by the Americans, Khomenei supported by the Americans .. No experience in democracy .. And all administrative structures are depending on nepotism
it’s a stony, hard way ahead – do you think a ‘leader’ could help? HOW could the mullahs confiscate the revolution? It was a democratic movement – how could they steel it? Was it possible because they had a structure? Where Iranians naive? It happened within this one year after the shah was gone in January 1978 .. The war began in January 1979, which surely helped the mullahs establish their power, but how could they gain the power so fast?
Khomeini did not come offering a constitution, democracy .. Why did he have so much support?
D: For one thing, he did actually give false democratic promises when he was on exile in France. But as soon as he came to power he changed his words. How did he gain support? He was a mullah, Ayatollah, Marja Taghlid- someone to whom Muslims refer for their religious questions. And in an Iranian society which was in a transition from tradition to modernism he could still gain some considerable support from the lower strata of society. And how could he confiscate the revolution? He was a charismatic religious leader but he had been on exile for years- he had done nothing!- The real freedom fighters were the activists in Iran, the Tude party (the leftists) and Mujahedin khalgh (before their post-revolution corruption). Khomeini cheated them. He suddenly rose to prominance- thanks to BBC and the religious ambiance prepared by religious intellectuals (?) Such as Dr. Ali Shariati who had spread the doctrine of Velayat-e Faghih (what makes Khamenei the Murderer a Supreme leader). So all the freedom fighters supported him. But when he arrived in Iran he brutally removed all the nationalsits (Like Bazargan) and other parties from the scene. The culmination of these suppression was the mass executions in the summer of 1988. There was no internet at that time no satellite channel from which to get the real news and besides there was the 8 year war which gave them the pretext to silent any opposing voices by calling the traitors. When we were kids we really thought Khomeini was a good guy. The state run TV filled our brains with lies and distorted images of the past history…
Will a leader help? If you want my opinion, definitely “yes”. But a leader who will have the support of the absolute majority. One of the greatest mistakes of Mousavi was to claim that he wanted to return Iran to the “golden era” of Khomeini. God know who can qualify for a leader and where from he might emerge but so far they have imprisoned any potential troublemaker. It is a frustrating condition we have here… Words, words and no action…
me: Was he in power by returning then? This is what it looked like to me ..
Yes … Words words …but before getting active it needs words to find possible ways – to not step in the same trap again
D: Yes, he came to Iran and seized power…
We know all we need to know… It is high time we did something
After the Arab Spring, Iranians realized that they do not have the same courage as Arabs
They are not willing to pay any price for freedom- excluding few brave activists and freedom fighters who are being held in prisons due to our silence
I know it sounds insane, but all my waking hours I am thinking of this problem, asking myself: how can we organize a mass protest and put an end to this shameful silence
I think thousands of others brood over the same thoughts as I but we, none of us, knows how to trust each other and unite for the fulfillment of the same dream
I wish I could be that one person who makes a change- but I neither have the knowledge nor the position to even begin- I guess I just have the courage, which is at the verge of insanity
me: This is a huge problem: trust !!! .. And safe ways to communicate.
The dream is everywhere ..
Though far away I can FEEL your desire – and I know about your courage, so again: from inside Evin it’s impossible to organize !!!
D: I, for one, trust all, ’cause I have no fear
What would we do if we knew we would overcome this regime? You see? If we could believe deep in our hearts that victory is possible then that would give us courage.
Most of what you hear from Iranians is that “this situation somehow will end” but this is said because they believe in fate which is in their favor not that they are ready to sacrifice their comfort for freedom of their land
When someone says: “this won’t last. There is a god and he will punish these bloodthirsty dictators.” I just want to punch them in the faceme: There are so many who feel like you …
D: Yeah. The guy i really like is Kouhyar. He has no fear … Or Shiva or Nasrin and others that i don’t know of
Uli, I know you don’t like such ideas, but if I ever get the chance I will do my share
I have a feeling that tells me i’ll be safe to the end
me: Activism by a single one will not help .. Get together – talk (I know .. words) to make a good plan – not for one single day but for some months … Learn ALL about civil resistance
D: I spend many hours each week studying non-violent resistance. Yes, we will do that and we shall overcome