A Constant Pain

by Denise Romano

For Anahita, an Iranian-German visiting New York for a few months, every day is a battle.

“I have been coming to every event there was, every protest and rally,” she said, ” because I just cannot not come and can’t not attend while people in Iran are attending such dangerous demonstrations on the street and risking their lives.”

“I come to express solidarity and sadness and hear myself be among Iranians who share the pain I feel every single second of the day.”

Being outside of Iran makes here feel useless.

“I have a feeling of being helpless,” she noted, while wondering how this situation came about.  “How can evil exist in that type of manifestation [the government]?  How can we change this?”

Change is A’Coming

Anahita thinks that this unrest will not last that much longer.

“Things will change; I have no doubts,” she explained.  “This is something people can pursue. This is a movement that they started.”

With the world watching, things will be easier.

“This regime has been unmasked to the whole world,” Anahita said.  “Everyone knows what kind of cruel military dictatorship that Iranian people have been living under.  I am very hopeful.  This is a good time for people to mobilize themselves and plan something in a more strategic way.”

Waiting for the World to Step In

Anahita is not happy with the international response and the lack of aid for the people of Tehran.

“I am not satisfied with the way America, the UN, the EU, anyone is dealing with this,” she fumed.  “No one is interfering.  Iranian sovereignty is good and fair, but this s a massacre, a human rights violation in the first degree. I know this is happening for a fact.  People are being tortured, how can politicians say ‘This is not good’ and that’s it? They [the governments of America and Europe] are all in the same boat, but I wish to see much more.”

She Just Wants Freedom

Anahita does not think any of the opposition leaders are fit for the job, but for now she is only asking for basic human rights.

“I don’t want to see Mousavi.  He is part and parcel of the rest of them,” she noted. “I want to see democracy and for the people of Iran to have the freedom to vote a parliament or president.  I  don’t care if it’s a monarchy,  just have the people get what they want.  We have to have freedom and equality and justice.”

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2 responses to “A Constant Pain

  1. stmichaeltraveler

    You said: “How can we change this?”

    Do we bear some responsibility for election and re-election of Ahmadinejad? Yes we do!

    Paul Findley in his article “Cool Clinton Response to Khatami Initiative …”, Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, April 1998, Pages 32, 101:
    “If President Clinton does not quickly come up with a generous, cooperative response he will leave a sorely embarrassed Khatami hanging, twisting in the wind—an easy target for the radical religious leadership within Iran that opposes any rapprochement with the United States and seems to have control over most foreign policy questions. The hard-liners in the Iranian government will have a field day and may well be able to discredit the new president, despite the 70 percent vote he received.”

    Our past political mistakes, and financial burdens we have placed on the Iranian people will not advance our long term American interests. To assist the Progressive movement in Iran, allow a greater exchange between the two societies, remove the burdens placed on the Iranian people by economic sanctions and restrictions. It is foolish to punish the people for our disagreements with their government. By removing the burden, we allow change in demographics of Iran toward a larger middle class; thus, it will shift the internal Iranian policy from Traditionalists toward the Progressives. We must support the Iranian Progressives. The Progressives are young, better educated and often the middle class segment of the Iranian population. Iranian Traditionalist (religious, very nationalistic, often poor, and under educated) voted for re-election of Ahmadinejad.

    We will not advance our American interests, or the Progressive Iranian movement, by listening to those who advocate a more aggressive policy toward Iran.

  2. Reply to stmichaeltraveler
    I respectfully disagree w/ you. As long as this Regime has the grip on any business dealings, be it domestic or international, any financial assistance or economic ties w/ U.S. will be a big mistake. The mullah’s and those in control will pocket the money and no one will know or dare to find out. Economic pressure and sanction is working. When a man is near starvation it is then his mind is ripe to rip things apart. We can see now this is about to happen in Iran and the Regime is slowly losing its grip. Do not legitimize the Regime by way of “a dialogue”

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