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Choose responses to these articles:

Dr. Soroush's Response to Dr. Velayati

Interview with Gary Sick

J. Javid's "Searching for Us"

Stephen Shaffer's "Shomal..."

B. Bahmani's "Areh Jooneh Ammat!"

dAyi Hamid's "Why Change a Name"

D. Paknejad's "Esm man? Mostaz'af"

M. Mehdizadeh's "Beatelha..."

F.S. Hess' "...Somber Paradise"

"Tough Times for Persepolis" Football Team

Natel Khanlari's "Culture is the Key"

"New Zealand?"

"Ceeteezen"

"New Year in Times Square"

F. Jivehie's "Break Free"

"Good Old Days"

The Iranian


Dr. Soroush's Response to Dr. Velayati

SENSIBLE TALK

Does the Iranian foreign minister's comment surprise you? People of Iran in general, and our politicians in particular, such as Foreign Minister Velayati, are so preoccupied with "political correctness" (for understandably good reasons, of course) that they have ceased voicing their real opinions altogether.

What Dr. Soroush is doing -- talking sensibly and voicing his opinion -- is praiseworthy.

Vahid Rahbari vahid@ecst.csuchico.edu

EXCHANGE OF IDEAS

I believe by allowing the voices of people like Dr. Soroush, you are helping him and others in Iran to continue to speak for truth and freedom of thought and I like to support you on that.

From what I read between the lines in this magazine, I sense that you, like many of us "students" who came out of Iran before the revolution, still like to continue your dreams about unifying Iranians and allowing an exchange of ideas in a free manner between all of us.

Iran's potential from every aspect is great. However, many think otherwise and believe Iran is now a lost nation. I like to agree with the contemporary writer Mohammad Eslami Nodoushan who proposed the establishment of Iransaraye Ferdowsi (Ferdowsi Iranian Center) in Mashhad in 1992.

He is currently the editor of the magazine called "Hasti" (Existence). He believes Iran once again in its history is coming to the juncture at which it has to make a major decision. She has to fall back on its own strengths. He believes it was Ferdowsi who saved Iranian identity and all of us owe our "Iranian being" to him.

Ali Ardekani
University of Pittsburgh
Ardekani@vms.cis.pitt.edu

PERSIAN ONLINE

It was great to read that article on Mr. Soroush in Persian. For the first time I was reading an article online in Persian! :)

Pedram Missaghi
Granada, Spain missaghi@veleta.ugr.es

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Interview with Gary Sick

GRADUAL CHANGE

I very much enjoyed the interview. I think propagation of U.S. political figures who have an understanding of the Iranian political climate is very helpful to bring about gradual change.

I am sick and tired of hearing [U.S. Senate Banking Committee Chairman] Alfonse D'Amato and [Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives] Newt Gingrich bashing Iran for their own political ends. It is time that some people with common sense in the U.S. speak their mind also.

Dr. Abbas Samadi
Paris, France
samadi@anatole.im3.inserm.fr

UNJUST PEACE

Regarding Gary Sick's comments on Iran's stance on the "peace process", there are leading opponents of this unjust and hypocritical process, such as Edward Said and Noam Chomsky. They have written a great amount of literature on it.

Get your facts right before embarrassing yourself. We get enough of this hogwash on CNN and in Reuters .

Omid Souresrafil, PhD
osoures@ibm.net

MASTERPIECE

Your interview is a real masterpiece. Thank you for making a good readable Iranian home page.

S Suwellam
Editor
Middle East and International Affairs uncensored Journal
rambo@sam.win-uk.net

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J. Javid's "Searching for Us"

SAME SOURCE

Thank you for calling my attention to your article on Hungary's Jász people. It was a fascinating read. Reminds me of what my first wife (bless her soul) wrote of her travels in Iran, etc. She said the people there were more like real Magyars, than the people in Hungary.

Both of our peoples have suffered much, but what that visitor wrote in the guest book of the Jász Museum rings true. May all people realize that we all come from the same Source, the Light of Divine Wisdom. I'll visit your site again. Thank you.

George Csaba Koller
Writer
Vancouver, Canada

PERSECUTION?

I think it is a brilliant idea that you have introduced this community to us. It is unbelievable what we Iranians have done throughout the centuries. We have colonies everywhere.

I really wonder why? Is it because of persecution? Why is it that we have been persecuted so much?!!

In any case your article was a beauty and indeed has motivated me to plan a trip to this unusual part of the world when I have the opportunity.

Is the reason why Yazdis feel so much attached to the Jász people that they might have been Zoroastrian Iranians who like Parsis fled Iran and the Arab persecution?

(Anonymous)
lmthomas@uclink2.berkeley.edu

VAST CHAIN

As a person with Iranian heritage but having never seen Iran, I naturally have endeavored to research my Iranian roots.

The Hungarian group having settled in the 13th century, nevertheless is much older. They are direct descendants of the Scythians, bloodthirsty relatives of the Iranians.

Doubtless the Indo-European, or Aryan, heritage of the Iranians is clear. In fact, linguistically, Persian (sans Arabic words) is the closest to a true Aryan language one can find.

The Scythians are slightly closer relatives to the Aryans, however they were scattered by the Viking invasions of Russia in the 8th through 13th centuries; hence the settlement of Iranian stock in Hungary.

This "tiny community", as you put it, is simply a link in a vast chain that encompassed a continent, and, to a degree, still does today.

Michael Farahbakhshian
mfarah@mail.erols.com

TWO THINGS

I read your delightful article about your visit to Jászbereny and your encounter with Jazygians.

Two things made me even more interested. First, I was born and lived half my life in Jász-Nagykun-Szolnok county in Hungary, just about 35 miles south of Jászbereny, where I visited quite often and walked through the same museum you did. Second, many years ago I enjoyed Iran's hospitality while working in Tehran.

Les
LACI@delphi.com

IRANIAN WORDS

I am aware of at least two Iranian words in Hungarian: ASSZONY (woman or lady) and A'RMA'NY (evil, the Devil - probably from Ahriman). There are probably many others, due to the Alan/Jász connection.

Attila Csanyi
attila1@ix.netcom.com

RUSSIAN IRANIANS

I was afraid of the negative opinion, because this region (Jász-Nagykun-Szolnok) is not very scenic. But the article is correct and very good.

We have learned that the Jász people and Osetians (between Georgia and Russia) are relatives. As far as I know these ethnic groups are originally Iranian, but the connection is not direct.

Perlaki Attila
irtpa@gold.uni-miskolc.hu
http://mm.iit.uni-miskolc.hu/~perlaki

FATHER'S FAMILY

I really loved [the article]. I was born in Kiskunfelegyhaza. We know that after the Turkish invasion in the 18th century, Kiskunfelegyhaza was reestablished by settlers from Jászfenyszaru. Nearly 300 families came from there, including my father's family.

Later they mixed with the Kiskun (Cumenian) population and now it is what you see in Kiskunfelegyhaza, in the "Capital" of Kiskunsag (Cumenia). Historians and archeologists showed that they are a different race than the others in Hungary.

Jozsef Zsigo
jzsigo@aruba.ccit.arizona.edu

SMALL WORLD

[The article] was really interesting. Seventeen years before I had been traveling to Jászbereny twice each week by that Volánbusz, because our company had a customer there for whom I worked for.

I also have a former colleague who now works in Tehran representing a Hungarian pharmaceutical company. Such a small world.

Janos Mayer
eurjmaye@mail.isys.hu

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Stephen Shaffer's "Shomal..."

BAD-E VATAN

The article brings back so many good memories, as if my processor fan is blowing a wind from Shomal to my face (Bad-e Vatan!). I feel lucky that I have seen many places in Iran as a contractor and among these places Shomal is a special place.

Who in the world can compare the contrasts in beauty in just a half-an-hour drive from Kelar Dasht to Chalous. Unfortunately, we Iranians do not appreciate the diversity of beauties that we have in our country until a visitor echoes that thought in our mind.

Sohrab ChamanAra
Chicago, Illinois
sohrab@ais.net

DELIGHTFUL

A delightful commentary on Iran by Mr. Shaffer. My family and I enjoyed the reading on our evening Internet surfing. Well done.

Sia Manzarpour
Toronto, Canada
majidman@idirect.com

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B. Bahmani's "Areh Jooneh Ammat!"

CAPTURING ERA

Behrouz Bahmani captures an era, a sense of reality, our former youth, and he is darn expressive and funny too! Good show bro! I hear ya! Only in Iran could you laugh at it all!

Farrokh Jahandari
Washington, D.C.
Dadashi@aol.com

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dAyi Hamid's "Why Change a Name"

NAME MASSACRED

My Iranian name is Hooman and all through high school I underwent the total massacre of my name by fellow students.

During the same time, I changed my religion to Christianity, and thus saw an obvious solution to my problem. I started using my Christian name, John, which by the way I choose by just opening the Bible to that section ;-)

My point is that if I had a name that was pronounced correctly by people, I would have never gone through the trouble of using two names to identify myself. I am definitely proud of my heritage and I usually announce my heritage if I deem suitable.

I guess the most important thing is your own comfort, and if your Iranian name is not creating any discomfort for you, by all means consider yourself lucky.

John H. Ghadimi
anaconda@crl.com

ARSHIA => ASHLEY

I have lived in Canada for 12 years and just now I am thinking about changing my name. Well not totally changing it, but just taking my first name and using it as my middle name and coming up with a new first name. Something like Ashley.

It is close to my real name and that is what most people in high school called me. Why am I doing this? because I am sick and tired of repeating my name three times every time I introduce myself. Also, having a Westernized name helps getting employed faster.

Arshia Riahi
http://www.tuns.ca/~goodara

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D. Pakenejad's "Esm man? Mostaz'af"

TOO FAR

Why should it be the business of the government to tell people what they can and cannot name their own child. I think it's gone a bit too far.

Mona Kalany
BFPQ20A@prodigy.com

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M. Mehdizadeh's "Beatelha..."

CULTURAL REVOLUTION

I am an Iranian now living in Denver, Colorado. I am 41-years-old and I too was part of the '60s era as I was growing up. I too think that the Beatles started a cultural revolution (specially for the youth and easily impressionable people).

Even though Iranian culture is a reserved one and more conservative, people were grabbed by this new phenomenon like wild fire and they were consumed by it. I am an amateur musician and back then I liked the new sound though not fanatically.

This cultural revolution in Iran was inevitable. The new generation back then was waiting for that moment. It just happened that this cultural change was ushered in by the Beatles!

If I am not mistaken Shahram Shabpareh's band was called "Gorbe-hayeh Siyah" (Black Cats). He took the idea and created what we now call Persian pop music. Iranians for long have been living in a cultural cocoon and have been branding any change (whether good or bad) as "Garb Zadeghi" (Westoxication), "irreligious", "immoral", etc. But once the road is paved we all like to get on the band wagon.

I'm by no means promoting or devaluing anything that has shaped our present culture. What I cherish is the awareness that history has sparked on each one of us. Let us look at things not as black or white but with many shades of gray.

Seif
Postmaster@consult_9.den.csci.csc.com

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F.S. Hess' "...Somber Paradise"

HARASSED?

Cool works. Enjoyed them. Were you harassed by any government agents during your stay in Iran? How did you interact with people?

Keep up the good work!

Mike Shapouri
mike@zoro.cts.com

PARADISE LOST

I greatly enjoyed the article and the paintings. I wish you had more paintings to show more of the "paradise" side of your experience in Iran.

Fereidoun Farbod
fereidoun@aol.com

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"Tough Times for Persepolis" Football Team

YOU'RE WRONG

The article said "The disqualified players included the league's top goal scorers, Farshad Piyous and Ali Daie."

A. Ali Daie has never been disqualified by any organization or football club in Iran.
B. Neither Farshad Piyous nor Ali Daei are the top goal scorers in the Iranian football league.
C. Farshad Piyous was given amnesty by the Iranian Football Federation before his disqualification period came to a complete term.

The article said "This is not music to the ears of religious conservatives, who see football as having a corrupting influence on society's youth ...."

As far as I have read in the sports magazines and sports sections of the Iranian press, there is no evidence to claim the religious conservatives see football as having a corrupting influence on the Iranian youth.

Hooshyar F. Naraghi
bivafa@ix.netcom.com

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Natel Khanlari's "Culture is the Key"

KEEP CULTURE

I totally agree with what the father wrote in the letter to his child. My father has told me the same thing and I always try to bring it to the attention of Iranian children.

As long as we keep our culture and traditions in our hearts, Iran will never fade away toward obscurity, no matter how strong her foe.

Mazda Aghamohammadi
University of California, Los Angeles
mazda@ucla.edu

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"New Zealand?"

LOOKING AHEAD

I think it is important to remember the past, but I agree with you that we should snap out of it and look to the future. We can be a more formidable entity.

Babak Yektafar
babak@axsamer.org

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"Ceeteezen"

IGNORANT? NOT!

Not all Americans are ignorant or Republican! There are a lot of Iranians who are Republican. And Americans have always been pretty cool so far and very generous.

Unfortunately there is only 1 percent of the Iranian population who is not ignorant of politics in Iran; that's why they have the present system.

Bahar Jaberi
Portland, Oregon
jaberib@pdx.edu

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"New Year In Times Square"

WHO'S NEW YEAR?

I just read your brief memoir of your visit to New York's Times Square during New Year's Eve. At the end when you were approaching the subway, you said you thought about all of us (Iranians) and you said happy New Year to all of us.

Well, the amazing thing is that the Christian new year has nothing to do with Iranians. Our New Year is somewhat different if you please!

Amir Asghari
asghari@utdallas.edu

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F. Jivehie's "Break Free"

LITTLE SHOCK

I am writing this neither to ask whether a man can use a professional musician's work in an Internet magazine, nor to ask whether he was Iranian or not!

I write this just because I am wondering why you haven't mentioned his professional name? Before his picture had become clear enough to recognize him, I told myself: "Wow! someone has thought no one knows Freddie Mercury!" But later when I could clearly see his picture, I was a little shocked. Yes, just a little!

Syavash
syavash@host.edu

HEARD VH1

I heard on a VH1 [music channel] interview a few days ago that [Freddie Mercury's] parents are from Iran. They also mentioned his Iranian name (I forgot what it was), which he later changed Freddie Mercury.

Nastaran Nazmi
nasti@ix.netcom.com (SCI posting)

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"Good Old Days"

THE GOOD IGNORED

When I ponder about the past and the country that we all were born and lived in for so many years, I can't help the grip of an acute nostalgia overcoming my entire being.

The regret of losing a secure place that with all its weak points, to me, was heaven -- compared to the hardship that one has to go through in these alien lands that we chose or were forced to adapt -- is sometimes too overwhelming to tolerate.

We have never realized or even tried to appreciate at least some of the efforts done [in Iran] during the last 50 years. We ignored all the good things that we had and dug in to find faults and to crucify those that we thought were responsible. We never learned to share the blame.

Nations create their own leaders and political systems and we are not innocent either. Let's at least learn to respect those who have done something for our people and homeland from now on. Let's not drag them to the mud.

After living abroad (Europe and the United States) in the last 16 years, I think that we had a homeland that if not better, was sure not any worse than any of these technologically advanced countries. I yearn so much for those days -- indeed the good old days.

Shabnam Tabibzadeh
stabibza@pioneer.arc.nasa.gov

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The Iranian

ROO SEFID

I just got done reading the third issue. Honestly keh rooy-e IrooniA ro sefid kardid! Afarin!

Keep up the excellence!

Amir Ghahani
jg@metaflow.com

FEELING TALL

I have just read the Jan./Feb. issue of The Iranian. I felt very good seeing it. It made me feel taller! I mean it. It is really good. If you are behind it, then WELL DONE. I hope next time you go to Iran you can come out all right!!!

JA

CHILDHOOD

I would like to thank you for your efforts in putting this wonderful magazine together. I thoroughly enjoy reading it. It kinda takes me back to my childhood years and makes me realize how much I love Iran and love being an Iranian.

Sometimes it is hard to remember who you are and where you came from when you are too busy living in a chaotic place like New York.

Mina Tamaddon
FTSE@aol.com

DEAR FRIEND

I truly wish you luck. However, please indulge me in quoting an interesting passage from Nietzsche's "Thus Spoke Zarathustra":

"And be on your guard, too, against the assaults your love makes upon you! The solitary extends his hand too quickly to anyone he meets.

"Many brief follies - that is called love with you. And your marriage makes an end of many brief follies with one long stupidity.Your love for woman and woman's love for man: ah, if only it were pity for suffering and veiled gods! But generally two animals sense one another.

"One day you shall love beyond yourselves! So first learn to love! For that you have had to drink the bitter cup of your love."

I hope I have not offended you, please say hi to your friend.

Omid Payrow,
Ottawa, Canada
apshaban@ccs.carleton.ca

NO PREJUDICE

It seems like The Iranian is something worth reading, which is what the Iranian community lacks. We need literature that is free of prejudices, identifiable by the Iranians in the U.S., and most important of all is trash-free.

Ahmad Taheri
infs0028@frank.mtsu.edu

TRANSLATE

It would be nice if the articles would have translations for any Iranian words or phrases used in the articles. I have been in the U.S. for about eight years and have lost much of the language. Therefore, I have a difficult time comprehending some of the words in Persian and would greatly benefit from a translation.

Mehrdad "Mark" Ahmadi
Kansas State University
ahmadi@ksu.ksu.edu

LOVELY IRAN

My name is Elham. I'm 16 and live in Manchester. I've been here for about three years. I left Iran because my father decided to study in England. He's a PhD student.

I read a letter in The Iranian about having faith in our homeland and I was really impressed to find my compatriots feeling as I do in places so far away from our home. I think this is because our Iran is attractive and lovely.

Even if we have lived there for a short period, or if we have been in a foreign country for a really long time, our hearts still beat for our home country.

Shouldn't we then appreciate having such a wonderful country and such a nice culture? Shouldn't we try to make ourselves more useful for our dear country?

Sometimes I think, why should I be thousands of miles away from my nearest relatives, so that I cannot even know when I've lost one of them? Why couldn't I be present in my own grand father's funeral? Why can't I celebrate the New Year with my aunts and uncles?

Why should our hearts be in pain from all these? Isn't it true that we've got only one chance to live in this world and enjoy it? Why are we losing it then?

Elham Beheshti
Ellen Wilkinson High School
Manchester, England
jundi-ellen@mail.u-net.com

WORLD CLASS

You guys are doing a world class job of this online magazine. Best of luck.

B. Bagheri
ben@nt.com

KHASTE NABASHID

This is just a quick note to thank you guys for publishing one of the most wonderful, entertaining Persian magazines that I have ever read. A big Khaste Nabashid to all of you who are responsible for bringing this wonderful magazine online.

Pedram Missaghi
Granada, Spain
missaghi@veleta.ugr.es

JOHNNY BOY?

Thanks Johnny Boy!!!!! Great, Great, Great, Great Job! This has brought tears to Mom's eyes several times during the readings.

Iran Javid Fulton
Rochester Hills, Michigan

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