Standing Up to the Mullahs: The Author Is a French-Iranian Journalist Who Was Working in Iran until, One Day, the Authorities Confiscated His Press Pass, Interrogated Him at Secret Police Headquarters, and Threatened to Harm His Family. He Then Fled to France

By Arefi, Armin | USA TODAY, November 2011 | Go to article overview

Standing Up to the Mullahs: The Author Is a French-Iranian Journalist Who Was Working in Iran until, One Day, the Authorities Confiscated His Press Pass, Interrogated Him at Secret Police Headquarters, and Threatened to Harm His Family. He Then Fled to France


Arefi, Armin, USA TODAY


"FROM NOW ON, all protesters will be treated as Israeli spies." This was the announcement made by the Revolutionary Guard a month after the Iranian people last took to the streets. In all likelihood, this quiet period can be explained by the revelations of torture cases and repeated prison rapes, as well as by the show trials in which numerous young protesters and key reformist figures have been seen on television making peculiar confessions.

Today marks the occasion of Tehran's traditional Jerusalem Day. Each year, the regime brings together thousands of its supporters, bussed in with the promise of free fruit juice and vast television coverage, and shows the rest of the world, through its pro-Palestine--or, more importantly, anti-Israel--rallies that it has the support of its people. For several weeks, the opposition has been using the Internet to send out a call for its supporters to use this date as an opportunity to take to the street again. Could it be that the Green Movement suddenly has decided to swear allegiance to the regime?

"We have entered a new phase," Arya, who has gained back a few of those pounds he lost in jail, explains in an e-mail, "and we're calling it the 'Great Hijack.' By infiltrating the official procession with our protest, we should be sale from any violent repercussions."

"Death to America." an aging man with a black beard shouts into a microphone.

"Death to Russia." the crowd responds in unison. Surprised and wondering whether he might have misheard, the man tries again.

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

"Death to Israel."

"Death to Russia," (the Islamic Republic's greatest ally) the crowd continues.

We now are on Karim-Khan Avenue, where tens of thousands of Iranians have convened, forming the largest gathering since June. In the crowd is a newcomer, a 24-year-old smiling from ear to ear and timidly joining in with a few of the slogans. It is Reza, and today he is on foot.

"Mashallah," the taxi driver beams, using a term of appreciation. "This is my people. This atmosphere is just unbelievable." He is right; it feels like an eternity since June's bullets mined down on his fellow men and women.

Behind the official flags of the Islamic Republic, a few families continue to chant their timeless revolutionary slogans, which must take some courage, surrounded as they are by thousands of green protesters. Perhaps the two sides really can live together--happily even--coexisting without hostility. There is at least one man, though, who cannot take it anymore.

"Baba Hadji [a respectful term for a pilgrim who recently has returned from Mecca]," be shouts to the amusement of all, "can't you change the station?" The huge crowd now reaches the KarimKhan Bridge, swallowing up cars and theft ecstatic occupants. In one of these cars are Azadeh and her mother. "I love you all," the younger woman screams from her open window. All of a sudden, a biker stops his motorbike a few feet in front of them, steps down from his vehicle, and abandons it right there in the middle of the street. A chores of car horns responds.

"Baha, are you nuts? Can't you see the line here?" one dumfounded driver cries. "Come back and get your bike."

The biker turns around and shouts back, "Dadash [bro]. Park yours, too, and join the people."

"The people of this country are jav guir [lead by their emotions]," Arya smiles, "for better or for worse."

The police also are present at today's gathering, as are the Basijis [militia], who are tearing round on their motorbikes, flexing their muscles in front of the crowd. Each time they come into view, they are met with boos from all around but, to everyone's surprise, no punishment is dealt out.

"Hoda, Hoda ... get down here right now, and bring your friends," Azadeh cries into her cell phone to her best friend, unable to contain her excitement. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Standing Up to the Mullahs: The Author Is a French-Iranian Journalist Who Was Working in Iran until, One Day, the Authorities Confiscated His Press Pass, Interrogated Him at Secret Police Headquarters, and Threatened to Harm His Family. He Then Fled to France
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.