He saw over
his head the Air France Boeing 747-200 touch down at Mehrabad
June 29, 2005
I am from Brazil. I wrote this
short tale a couple of months ago but only now translated
into English. It's
story which takes place during the revolutionary unrest.
During the rule of Shah Abbas, they used to say that
"half of the world". Giant squares, magnificent buildings, great poets
whom in the city's endless gardens declared love and devotional poems.
However, none of these features could impress Munir. Legitimate son of that land,
he despised from birth that shattered opulence glorified by the members of the
Rastakhiz. He used to say that the best view from Esfahan was the one you can
see through the aircraft's window.
He survived in that city until he was
15, when his father, a Savak officer for a few, a Ministry of Education bureaucrat
was transfered to the capital city, Tehran. Left behind a home
city where Hafez rests his soul Munir, his father and
sisters: Benafshé, Yasmin and Zahra.
The house in Tehran was near the
Soviet embassy, a cozy 2-storey high house in German style near a candy shop.
boy loved to walk by Gandhi
checking on the latest European fashion trends, the latest Rolling
Stones album, side-by-side with a grafitti by the Tudeh militants, asking for the
monarchy in Iran. His school was near the campus of the University of Tehran.
those beautiful girls in those short skirts, colorful shades and carrying
Nabokov and e.e.cummings on their arms, or the other ones, discussing the
unworried by the sidewalks of the now called Esteghlal Ave.
Just like the snow
on the base of the mountains melts, the life of the kids turn into the life
of boys and into teens' and then, in the future, they
will always meet the implacable hypocrisy which is the adult age. But they
thinking about that. After all, it was Nourooz, happy 1356 (1977). After
the festivities and the
days off, the return for the usual day-by-day life is unavoidable.
home every day towards his new studying address: the Literature
Department at U. of Tehran. He walked into the tense light-grey
building holding tight his 5-page
dissertation on "The Rose Garden", his favourite book, side-by-side
with Turgeniev's "Fathers and Sons". There was some animosity
at the department because of a severe discussion between some religious
students and a teacher, who, in a moment of rage against the class, issued
Qoran was the best work of fiction ever written.
There were about 30 boys outside
the class screaming and literally asking for some blood. The only
was a lamb for the sacrifice. All eyes turned to the hall, where the happy
was walking. Someone recalled a comentary, made by someone who told somebody
that Munir was a Savak informant. A suspect in a moment of rage becomes immediately
guilty. They grabbed him by the shirt, threw away the dissertation
on "The Rose Garden" he had typed for hours, yelling angry words
and hitting him in all the ways a
person can be hit. The young Esfahani couldn't get it, why?
That was a daily
routine, for a year. Until that Bahman in 1357 [February 1979]. A
on this month he got home bleeding (as usual), however yelling at his father.
Even though the commitment of the Savak officers was said to be high, this
father couldn't take lying to his son and watch him suffer every single
confessed: no to educational specialist for Vanak area, yes to student activities
The crying went through for two days and two nights. The
black marks couldn't hurt more than the marks on his soul. The lie he lived
for almost twenty years. On the second night of tears, he heard that Imam
Khomeini was going to return from his exile in France. Munir looked at
figure, the bearded cleric.
He was the synthesis of his problems, he was guilty, guilty of his suffering.
of calling for a fatwa, he issued himself the decision: capital punishment.
going to wash with blood his pain.
The next day he told his mother that he was going to spend a few
days with his cousin, Fereydoun in Rasht. However, the taxi went
than the road
to the Caspian Sea. Heading to a low-class suburb in South Tehran, where
he was offered some opium for a couple of American dollars and women would
lust for a couple of tomans, he found his fate at a blue door. Opening
it, he led to an ill-iluminated room, where a fat man with a Yazdi
The smell of cheap arak was intoxicating. The man with an Armani
suit in his 50s pulled up a 007-style suitcase and offered him
a ZK rifle with telescopic aim. Wrapped it on the pages of Zanerooz women's
magazine, got the money and smiled with a couple of teeth missing. "Enjoy
it", said a really thin Turkoman
sitting by the wall, holding his AK-47 and smoking a pack of
Benson & Hedges.
Holding his package as if it was
the last flame of the temple, he headed towards Mehrabad Airport, along with
the crowd, hundreds of journalists coming from every
corner of the globe, to witness this historical moment. As the bus stopped,
he headed in the other direction, where there still was an empty
He saw over
his head the Air France Boeing 747-200 touch down. It was a matter
of time. He settled at a good point, where he could see his enemy rise from
the plane into the arms of the crowds. Protected under an old outdoor
ad, he laid
on the ground, armed the weapon and waited. And then he only felt a hard
hit and things faded out.
He woke up several hours later, thrown
into a sticky cell
at Evin Prison. Minutes later, he would be hanged along with three other
people. He looked right and saw his father, the betrayed Savak
The last sight of
this Googoosh and Rolling Stones fan.