Archiv für den Tag 3. Mai 2013

Iran: Inspiring, Enchanting, Unforgettable

There are numerous ways and alternatives to draw a real picture of a country and to demonstrate its real state, but one of the most effective ones is to show its people’s daily life, not just via the news lines or news websites but by observing the lives, difficulties, problems, efforts, smiles and joy, and cries and pains of its ordinary people from all walks of life. Iran is no exception here. The process becomes more exciting when the foreign tourists register the real events of a society with their camera and we can see them through their eyes.

Sanji & Fiona Gunasekara believe: “There is a woeful misperception about Iran in many Western countries including New Zealand. We believe that one way to counter these myths is by sharing travel experiences of visitors that have actually experienced Iran for themselves.


Iranian workers mark May Day with protest

A group of workers gathered in front of Iranian parliament on the occasion of the International Worker’s Day to protest against their inadequate wages in the face of rising inflation. ILNA reports that the workers held a protest demanding a reconsideration of the minimum wage increase which was approved for this year.

Meanwhile official May Day events took place at Motamedi Stadium in southern Tehran after the Interior Ministry refused to issue a parade permit to Worker’s House organizers.

Four thousand workers attended the event on May 1, after two applications by the Worker’s House to organize a parade were met with silence from the Interior Ministry. Lies den Rest dieses Beitrags

Latest on the Race: Economy Top Election Issue

      The economy is a pivotal issue in Iran’s presidential campaign, since the country now faces its most serious crisis since the 1980-88 war with Iraq. Virtually everyone—including both supporters and critics of the regime—is demanding change. Most candidates are too.
      But the economy has also sparked the widest array of solutions. Campaign slogans often illustrate the political divisions, even though the field of candidates is overwhelmingly conservative. The only thing that unites them is criticism of President Ahmadinejad’s poor economic performance.
            The candidates’ plans vary widely, from weaning Iran off oil revenues to creating jobs for university graduates. Mostafa Kavakebian, a reformist, even calls for improving relations with the United States for sanctions relief ― if Washington softens its tone. Most candidates have not yet detailed how they will achieve their lofty promises. The following are the economic agendas of eight major candidates, according to Iranian news media.
Ali Akbar Velayati, chief foreign policy adviser to the supreme leader
• Wean economy off oil revenues
• Don’t waste public money
• Complete national development plans
• Fix the economy in three years
Mostafa Kavakebian, secretary general of the Democracy Party
• Improve ties with the United States for sanctions relief
• Lower inflation to below 20 percent
• Lower unemployment to below 10 percent
Mohammad-Baqer Qalibaf, mayor of Tehran
• Stabilize economy in two years
• Create jobs for university graduates through effective management
• Follow the 20-Year Vision Plan, which requires Iran to be a top economic power in the region by 2025
Mohammad Reza Bahonar, deputy speaker of parliament
• Control cash flow and rising prices
• Decrease the inflation rate to a single-digit number
• Revive the Planning and Budget Organization that Ahmadinejad dissolved in 2007
Mohsen Rezaei, Expediency Council secretary and ex-Revolutionary Guards chief
• Tie the currency to non-oil exports and support domestic producers
• Increase household income and support a grassroots economy in towns
• Reduce unemployment
• Give farmers “green” subsidies
•Reduce the inflation rate to a single-digit number
Hassan Rouhani, former head of the Supreme National Security Council
• Lift U.N. and unilateral sanctions on Iran through improving relations with other nations
• Boost domestic production
• Reduce unemployment and employ more academics
Ali Fallahian, Assembly of Experts member and former intelligence minister
• Fight corruption by using more electronic transactions
• Continue subsidy reform
Mohammad Hassan Aboutorabi-Fard, deputy speaker of parliament
• Decrease national expenses to dampen effect of sanctions
• Increase the value of Iran’s currency by boosting domestic production
• Reduce dependence on oil revenues
Sampling of Iranian news sources:


Iran Takes Tough Stance on Chemical Weapons in Syria

On at least one issue—and at least rhetorically—Iran and the United States agree. Both Tehran and Washington are now on the record in calling the use of chemical weapons “a red line.” Iran’s toughening position may reflect its own experience when Saddam Hussein repeatedly used several types of chemical weapons against Iran during the 1980-1988 war launched by Iraq. The United Nations verified at least seven uses of mustard or nerve gasses in specific operations. 
On April 30, Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi said that use of chemical weapons by anyone in Syria is Iran’s “red line.” The United States recently called for a U.N. investigation based on new evidence of sarin gas use in Syria’s civil war. But Salehi reportedly suggested that the rebels might be responsible. Iran accuses Western and Arab countries of fueling the conflict and supporting foreign fighters against President Bashar Assad. The following are excerpted remarks by top leaders on Syria.

Chemical Weapons
            “We have always emphasized that using chemical weapons, by anyone, is our red line… [The United Nations should] identify the main culprit behind the use of chemical weapons in the country before it is too late and the situation gets out of control in Syria… We oppose any type of production, stockpiling and use of weapons of mass destruction, and this stance is the clear message and consistent policy of Iran…” Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi to Iranian news media on April 30 Lies den Rest dieses Beitrags

Supreme Leader on Women

      The West has committed an “unforgivable sin” against women by defining them as merely objects of pleasure, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Iran’s National Women’s Day. The supreme leader claimed that Islam grants women equal rights and honor, while Western lifestyle degrades them. He also warned that irreparable damage to family values will lead to the West’s collapse, according to Fars News Agency.

      In his May 1 speech, Khamenei argued that Western women have to serve men to further themselves in society. But Iranian women can participate in “politics, social and jihadi activities, helping people and the Revolution … while preserving her grace, dignity and Islamic hijab,” he claimed in an undated article on his office’s website. The following are excerpted remarks by Khamenei on women.
Women in the West
            “The move that the West’s materialistic civilization has done towards women is a big and unforgiveable sin, the consequences of which are absolutely irreparable… In the West, the human being is divided into two parts: men who are considered beneficiaries and women who are exploited and used…
            Once the foundation of a family is shaken, the problems of that society will be internalized and the Western civilization with its vicious sexual laws is doomed to fail and collapse…” May 1, to poets on National Women’s Day
            “The Western world and in the European world claim to be defending women rights – which is almost all a lie – but women did not have the right to vote, could not speak and choose, and did not have the right to possess property until the early decades of the twentieth century.” From an undated article on Khamenei’s website
Women in Sports
            “An athlete promotes the values of a nation with good sportsmanship and piety. The fact that our woman athletes enter sports arenas with hijab (head covering) is very important…
            “In a certain European country, some people dare to kill a woman because she is wearing hijab. And they do it in a court of law and in front of the judge. This is the case. They are not ashamed of it. Under a certain illegitimate law, they harass women who wear hijab in universities, stadiums, parks and on the streets. In such conditions, a woman who wears hijab stands on the medal platform in such countries makes everyone respect her. Is this a minor achievement? This is a very great achievement. Everybody should appreciate from the bottom of their heart the value of women athletes who participate in international arenas with hijab and modesty…” March 11, to veteran athletes and participants from the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics
Women in Iranian Society
            “Today, the Iranian woman can enter the field of science… while preserving the religion, chastity, piety, dignity, grace, personality and reverence of a typical Muslim woman. There are, among you, many female students, professors and scholars. A woman might also enter the field of religious sciences and information without any obstacles. Among you, there are many seminarians, students, instructors and professors of religious sciences who deal with Islamic fiqh and religious insight. Our great Imam [Khomeini] also highly regarded this issue and gave an order to establish this institute of Qom. Today a woman in our country is able to participate in different activities including politics, social and jihadi activities, helping people and the Revolution and appear in different fields while preserving her grace, dignity and Islamic hijab…” From an undated article on Khamenei’s website
Women in Pre-Revolutionary Iran
            “The woman in the society of the evil system of the kingdom was really an oppressive one… A Muslim woman could not easily survive at the universities and educational, scientific and cultural centers with hijab, grace and dignity. Was it possible? A woman could not walk in the streets of Tehran or some other cities with even a partial hijab… Education for women was almost impossible in this country. Of course, there were exceptions. Generally speaking, entering the field of science for women was almost impossible except by giving up hijab, piety and Islamic dignity!
            The same problem was there in terms of political and social activities. Once a woman decided to have a social or political position in Iran, she had to give up hijab, chastity and the dignity of a Muslim woman. Of course, it depended on how her nature and potentialities were…” From an undated article on Khamenei’s website
Women in Islam
            “In Islam, women have the right of allegiance, property possession while their presence in the social and political arenas is something fixed. Women used to come to the Prophet [Mohammad] to pledge their allegiance. The Prophet wanted both men and women to participate in decision-making. Women did not have to follow men. They participate in choosing their government and the social and political system. The Westerners are a 1300  years behind Muslims in this regard. The same is true about the right to have property and other social and political issues…”  From an undated article on Khamenei’s website
Photo Credit: via Facebook
Source: USIP


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