Saturday, January 22, 2011

Marg Bar Diktator.

Josh Shahryar, in this essay, reflects on the vicious acid attack on the brave Afghan journalist Razaq Mamoon, who "to us was perhaps what Edward R. Murrow was back in the 1960s to U.S. journalists." The attack occurred the same day that bullying from the Iranian embassy in Ottawa shut down the screening of the film Iranium at the National Library and Archives, followed by several "complaints" and anonymous threats (including the delivery of letters containing a suspicious white powder) that shut down the Library itself.

From his hospital bed in Kabul, Mamoon says his publisher had been threatened by the Iranian embassy and there is no doubt whatsoever that his attackers were agents of the Khomeinist police state in Tehran: "They tried to ban the book. I had the feeling that they would do something. I don't think this will be the first and last." Writes Shahryar: "What scares me, however, is how far can Iran's arms reach? Should other journalists living abroad who've criticized the Islamic Republic fear for their lives?" My question: Which side are you on?

The backstory, and how things turned out in Ottawa:


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