For Sadra, an Iranian citizen attending college in New York and living in Brooklyn for the past six months, the election started out well.
“It was a good election. People were enthusiastic to go and vote against Ahmadinejad,” he said. “Working families, low income class and high income classes were not satisfied with his policies. His policies are not good for any class, so people came to the polls to vote against him.”
But with the Supreme Leader was on Ahmadinejad’s side, the election results were an unpleasant surprise.
“They rigged the election,” Sadra said. “They were expecting something else – 24 million votes for Mir Mousavi. Instead there were 24 million votes for Ahmadinejad.”
A Reaction Heard ‘Round the Globe
“People were all shocked that night,” he said. “When they started counting votes, people were really shocked and after that they started to react.”
After the people in Iran started to show their disapproval of the election, the backlash began.
“They started killing, beating and detaining people,” Sadra said of the Iranian government, adding that he was thankful for all of the protests that came about in NYC, Paris and in the United Kingdom shortly after.
“People in Tehran cannot show their reactions now, but they are still not satisfied,” he said. Sadra also stressed how important it is for people in other parts of the world to keep rallying and protesting, because they can.
“We have to keep doing this with us [the Iranian people] against the regime,” he said. “This wasn’t an election, it was a coup d’etat. But here, we can rally and protest in a free country.”
A Wise Decision
Sadra is happy with President Barack Obama’s choices so far.
“I think he is quite wise, the wisest man ever seen in United States Presidency,” he said. “He decided not to interfere in the problems in Iran. This is a good choice. He said, ‘I am the president of the US, not the president of Iran, so go and solve your problems.’”
Sadra also hopes that troops stay far away from Iran.
“Yes, they [the Iranian government] are killing people and torturing them, and this is against human rights, but please do not send military men,” he pleaded. “We also don’t need more sanctions against the people of Iran. He [Obama] is so, so wise.”
No Crystal Ball
Sadra is unsure about the future of the Iranian government.
“No, we don’t need a new government,” he said. “People showed reaction to the regime of the coup d’etat, but they are not revolutionary. We are not looking for a revolution.”
Despite his uncertainty, Sadra sees a silver lining in all of this.
“It’s hard to predict what will happen, and it may take years to see what will be,” he pointed out. “But I am really happy now because all the governments and nations realize the people of Iran are separated from the government of Iran. We don’t have the same opinions as the president of Iran. Ahmadinejad is a coup d’etat president, not a president of the Iranian people.”