Our special guests: two European students representing France and Italy.

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"They would do nothing more than stare at you" she repeated. "And this would be symbolic - it would indicate that they would kill you?" I responded in confusion. "My father was on the blacklist, he could not enter nor leave the country - they were to kill him if found" she went on, translating to me as her father rapidly relayed stories from after the [edited] to our friend sitting beside him in the front of the car as we made good ground in convoy to a mountainous area outside of Tehran. My friend's father attended to the road in much the same fashion he did in his stories, a seemingly emotionless account, mostly factual, keeping four wheels on the ground and very much aware of the poor road conditions. "He was working in America when he heard about the event, watching looters on the TV claiming a factory, before turning to his friends in shock realisation that he indeed owned the factory", she said evoking an awkward laugh from me. These episodes joined the many other I've been accumulating, contributing to a fractured chronology that I dare not repeat - so many people, so many stories, so much pain.

"What ze phuk are you doing 'ere?" was the opening question shouted by the French fella

A friend's birthday had united us for a day's break outside of the city. For a rare occasion we were to play host to special guests: two European students representing France and Italy. I had had the pleasure of meeting these chaps before over coffee, "What ze phuk are you doing 'ere?" was the opening question shouted by the French fella - "exactly!" I unwittingly responded. On that day we had jumped between languages, laughing at each other's pronunciation as we discovered how we came to be before one another.

English when spoken with a French accent is something I'm fond of - for all the pleasant images it invokes. I enjoy the mispronunciation and find it perfectly forgivable for all that it reminds me of. Yet, as impressed as I was to hear these chaps talk in Farsi, it just wasn't working. The French accent had managed to combine four or five not too uncommon sounds in Farsi, bleeding into one another like a dodgy Inkjet creation, resulting in near incomprehensible print. Our French friend was squatting, repeatedly curling his words out, presenting a confusing sculpture for us to observe with fascination.

Our outing was to be confusing for all parties, yet more so the full Iranians who swallowed any language passed their way. There was no consistency to the choice as we sat between meals and tea digesting many of international topics. "What economy?", we replied after being informed that our French friend is here studying Iranian economics. "Iran is not strong, they have to import their oil as they do not have the technology to refine it - sure they can extract it, lots of it, but they must export this for refinement", stated our French friend. The day was to coincide with the deadline presented by the UN regarding the external desire for Iran to stop uranium enrichment. He went on to present his perspective about future events, "I'm certain there will be diplomatic sanctions within a year - embassies calling back their staff and such". Frustratingly he said that such moves would also conclude his time in Iran. We moved on in heated discussion, speculating as to the whys, whens, and hows, discussing energy issues and hegemonic desires. Our conclusions were not pretty, bringing a dark cloud on an otherwise sunny day. We'd silenced the full Iranians in the way that they had silenced me with the morning stories, I look in horror at the past and they look in horror for the future.


  • Sadly, at this point, I can only hope for diplomatic sanctions. After a visit from Condoleezza Rice the Turkish Foreign Minister, Abdullah Gul, said he'd been asked by the U.S. if they could attack Iran by air from İncirlik and that in exchange for this the U.S. would help Turkey establish its first nuclear reactor (hmm, double standards?) though thankfully Turkey refused the request. It was in Al-Bayan originally but a Google News search will yield English sources.
    I think U.S. intentions are quite clear, whether people want to see them or not and organization among the Iranian diaspora to stop such acts is long overdue...

    By Anonymous Tahereh, at 6:42 PM  

  • Seriously, does EVERY post need to start with a quote? I love reading Iranian blogs, but this one's faux-literary style is exhausting and pretentious.

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