Ahmad Batebi (1)

Student activist interview with VoA after escape from Iran

PART 1 -- PART 2 -- PART 3 -- PART 4 -- PART 5 -- PART 6

Ahmad Batebi gained notoriety for his appearance on the cover of The Economist magazine holding up a bloodied shirt belonging to a fellow student who had been beaten by the Basij paramilitaries. The photo, which has been called "an icon for Iran's student reform movement," was taken during the Iranian Student Protests in July 1999 in Tehran. Following its publishing, Batebi was arrested, tried in closed-door proceedings, found guilty of "creating unrest," and sentenced to death. This was reduced to 10 years after domestic and international outcry.


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Niloufar Parsi

Free Thinker

by Niloufar Parsi on

It is common practice for countries that go through regime change or major upheavals to set up 'truth and reconciliation commissions' in order to try and avoid the kind of bloodshed that Iran experienced in the post-revolution era.

It is certainly more sensible and practical to try and reconcile different factions so as to put an end to the rule of hate and revenge. How many people would you want punished in the event of a regime change in Iran? Where would you stop? Do you know how many people have been active in the Sepah, hezbollah, basij etc? Would you want all of them punished? What good would it do? in fact, if those people saw such an event coming, what would be their incentive for letting go of their regime? We can't win people over with the threat of violence.

Let me ask you: what is the best way to tame someone who you WANT on your side?



Niloufar, your naievity is

by Free Thinker (not verified) on

Niloufar, your naievity is costly. We have been down this road before and the results were disastrous for the nation. His name is Khatami. Despite his past and intimate associations with the Islamic regime we gave him the benefit of the doubt and he betrayed a whole generation. The very person that you are now celebrating his freedom, Ahmad Batebi, was the direct victim of Khatami’s betrayal. So your naïve optimism in saying that the time will tell has proven to be a disaster for several generations. If you haven’t done your homework on Ganji, and the evidence is wide and long, you should not pass such irresponsible comments. Ganji has to stand trail, quite democratically, for his past deeds. He should never be trusted again. This is how the true democracies of the West have survived. If your partner in a civil relationship cheats on you, you may forgive him but are prepared to continue with him? If you are prepared to take that risk based on your personal needs, then you are the only one who would suffer the consequences of your naivety. But when the likes of Khatami and Ganji who are suggested to be being given a second (or a third) chance turn out to be the same old stock that they were, a nation will suffer the consequences of this foolish trust. No thanks, we do not need to be fooled again.

Niloufar Parsi

Anonymous irani

by Niloufar Parsi on

Yes, I see your point. But look at it this way: all revolutions lead to extreme events, and people get carried away by the waves created. In time, the dust settles, and they get a chance to evaluate the situation and learn from their mistakes. Our families were torn apart by the revolution. I have had people in mine active on all sides from within the revolutionary guards to the most pro-shah people there are. I love them all, and I believe we should try and find common grounds with as many people as we can. One thing that I heard Ganji say that really touched me: democracy has to start from within the family. I don't know all that much about him, but he sounds good now. I suppose time will tell.




by Anonymous irani (not verified) on

I am all for inclusiveness, but we have been hurt badly by those who kept silence in view of khomeini's crimes when they could make a difference and instead helped IRI oppress people should first "pay" for their crimes. Isn't that how a just civil society should work? Ganji is a fraud; he "was" with the regime when regime was identifying and prosecuting iranians. He has not even apologized for his serious mistakes and poor judgement which resulted in commonly "iranians" getting hurt.

We have so many educated good people, both inside and outside iran, that given the chance can turn iran around. We do not have to resort to people with dark past. Remember khomeini said all the right things before coming to power and we know what he did thereafter.

P.S.: Ganji was confronted in his appearance in London by a lady who had serious problem with his past behaviour, and he had no answer to offer. He still believes in the revolution and the islamic republic. I do not seem to be able to find the video of that incident to post.

Niloufar Parsi

Anonymous irani

by Niloufar Parsi on

Why do you want to shut the door on Ganji? He is trying to make amends for his mistakes, and his words are faultless as far as I can see.

So many millions of Iranians want to change themselves and Iran, so why not be inclusive in our approach?



Batebi is not the same as Ganji

by Anonymous irani (not verified) on

Ganji is an ex-IRI intelligence personnel. He was a criminal islamist kind who collected info on likes of Batebi when he was with the regime. He only turned into a democrat when he was set aside by mullas and his stipend was not paid. He is a hypocrite who still has to answer for lots of crimes that he facilitated when he was a revolutionary and a disciple of khomeini. Batebi has alway been clean and innocent.

Niloufar Parsi

Ahmad Batebi

by Niloufar Parsi on

IS a true hero. He has obviously been through hell, and needs time to recover. The likes of Batebi and Ganji are essential for building international solidarity for democratic change in Iran without resorting to any collaboration with imperialist forces. This is the way to do it.



Any islamists?

by Anonymous irani (not verified) on

Fascist islamists are fairly quite to accuse him of this and that (except for our in-house MD) and defend their bogus revolution perpetrated on iranians by that indian mulla and his arabian brothers.

Viva kurds who came to the rescue of this true hero of iran (note to islamists: hero of iran, but not hero of islam; the heroes of islam have been doing their deeds for 30 years so far sacrificing iran and iranians for their bogus god).


What MoI has to say

by Free Thinker (not verified) on

I am very happy to see Ahmad Batebi freed. But I refuse to believe that his freedom was gained by coincidence. Ministry of Information of the Islamic regime is far more sophisticated than you think. They are not going to free (or arranging to be freed) Batebi if his presence outside of his jail was any threat to their security. To them Batebi is more useful ouside of Evin than insde it. I am not accusing Batebi of anything but watch this space for Batebis' anti-war, anti-sanctions, anti-regime change speeches. Like Shirin Ebadi, Akbar Ganji and Abbas Fakhravar he is going to be the next "useful dissident" in the MOI's arsenal of time-buying weapons.


Iran has also the right ...

by Hajminator on


to kick the bottom of all headlouse mullahs and damn vatan foroosh-es (DVF) like those who disown the bravery of 20 years students fighting for the freedom of ashghal-haE like DVFs.


Wow...Enter the dragon!

by Ye Irani (not verified) on

$400M is making lots of people happy. Even if 10% of that ends up in the hands of Tehranjelesi few good! Men, it will make some millionairs for Iranian community in US.
BUT, beware that this money will kill many innocents abroad..and their lives are no less valuable than Batebi's!

What can I do to get my share?

Mona 19


by Mona 19 on

Wishing you a world of Happy new beginnings!


Warmest Regards,Mona







Mr. Batebi's interview with VOA and your comments

by Roya 365 (not verified) on

Dear Sir,

Frankly I am shocked at your comments. By virtue of carrying the suffix "MD" after your name, your sworn oath and your ethics should condemn any form of torture or human suffering. Mr. Batebi is a brave young man who suffered for his belief in freedom, justice, and what democracy is or should be. And yes, majority of Iranians who live abroad would like to come back to Iran. As one of them, I regret that my government is equivalent to what Nazi germany was and I pity myself that I cannot enjoy "money, better life, and more comfort" in my own country. You may also want to add the freedom of speech, and for that matter, the freedom to live without fear to that list too. Last but not least, two wrongs does not make a right. Just because you think Americans live in pure injustice, doesn't make it ok for Iranians to live in pure injustice. I suggest you look in to ways to improve life in Iran instead of analyzing the lifestyle or beliefs of another nation.

Babak Khorramdin

Crush Mullah Agent

by Babak Khorramdin on


Mardak go see a shrink,You twisted mind freak!!!!!Vatan forosh is YOU, defending your gang "The Mullah Thugs"

Your end is near,Start counting your day, shame and more shame on all Mullah Sheepeeshoo

Batebi is a couragous , brave Iranian HERO

Zendeh bad hamvatanan Kurd, we need more of Kurdish Warrier :D




Hey! "Iran also has

by Anonymousb (not verified) on

Hey! "Iran also has rights"...Don't you worry, if VOA bothers you, I am sure that is just the first of many many many many news, political, academic and international forums where he will finally be allowed to do what he's has been denied all these years, freedom to speak his mind and freedom to expose the IRI criminals.


create positive change in our country.

by Lucifercus (not verified) on

with a little help of our nice lovely old uncle sam? Hhe puts all his tools at our disposal ans tells us how we should better do it. He helped his majesty the most last Perserkaiser, he helped sadam, he helped or stil helps Talibans. Why shoud he not want also to help us "IRANIAN"s? Why not?

Natalia Alvarado-Alvarez


by Natalia Alvarado-Alvarez on

I have never said this to anyone on this web site before but you are a "COMPLETE MORON".

What an unbelievably idiotic statement!!! The man is still recovering from his ordeal. It will take him years to be whole again.

Just take a look at your comment:


to crush western agents!

by IRAN ALSO HAS RIGHT (not verified) on Wed Jul 02, 2008 05:51 PM CDT


"forget for a second that you hate the medium he is using to get his message across"

and to person who said he can say whatever he wants

YOU ARE RIGHT, he can.... but then iran also has a RIGHT to destroy AGENTS OF THE DOSHMAN.

you guys need to realize again the medium, it is sedaye AMREEKA. amreeka! not iran. but AMREEKA! and why did he not go on sedaye AMREEKA and talk about bush and his crimes in iraq since he was on their official propoganda channel. batebi is a sellout



Student activist interview with VoA after escape(?) from Iran?

by Faribors Maleknasri M.D. (not verified) on

Hier is the american way of making news immitated. No wonder. "IRANIAN" is a out-station of CNN. The fact is: Nobody is able to "escape" from Islamic republic of Iran. NOt even american war ships or british gun boots. This "Student" hier has all legaly with Iranian passport left his homeland. I hope he would never regret his leaving. as thausends and thausends other Iranians do. 1981 - it was the Wartime - 100.000 iranians left home for europe via Turky and Pakistan. They left all legal. Because of economical reasons. The western media turned it to political reasons. Our "Student" hier wants money, better life more comfort in his daily life. All these were his natural right. But why claim his reasons are political? Then rule is: He who tells the maters of KHODIs to GHAIR E KHODIs IS Ghair E KHODI. Why beging the greate satan for "freedom" in Iran? look first how the americans live. They live in pure unjustice. United states is governed by money, he who has more is right. Is that democracy? Freedom? Greeting

Natalia Alvarado-Alvarez

I wish him well............

by Natalia Alvarado-Alvarez on

Like someone mentioned on this thread, I hope that he has the opportunity to recieve counseling. I can't even begin to imagine the kind of torment, he was subjected to.

I'm just glad that he was able to get away. I wish him a joyful and prosperous life.


It is heart warming to see...

by Zion on

...brave young men who fight for freedom survive the dungeons of fascism and stand tall. Good luck to him and god speed.


Thank you KDP

by Fair on

I also thank KDP for helping this man reach freedom. I hope other Iranians learn from them so that we can all create positive change in our country.


elham we need more people like U

by Kurdish Warrior (not verified) on

Unfortunately many Persians see the party with suspicious. Even though I'm not member of that party I support it for what it has done and accomplished so far for Iranians. I hope this proves that the party is not what some ultra nationalist believe it is and start supporting it as well


A big damn prison!

by Pass-farda (not verified) on

The entire country of Iran is one big prison yard.

ebi amirhosseini

I'm happy for his parents!

by ebi amirhosseini on

source : //batebi86.blogfa.com

اسفند ۱۳۸۵

نامه باقر باطبی به عفو بین الملل  : نمیخواهیم فرزندمان احمد باطبی را در گوشه زندان از دست بدهیم میخواهم با شما سخن بگوئیم. ما از شما مردم در هر کجا که هستید برای نجات پسر عزیزمان احمد استمداد می طلبیم خواهش میکنیم برای نجات پسرمان احمد باطبی ما را یاری کنید! این انتظار یک پدر و مادر از شما است. احمد مٽل فرزند شماست. برای نجات فرزندتان کاری کنید
اسم احمد باطبی پسر عزیز و جگر گوشه ما دیگر نه تنها برای شما بلکه  برای مردم سراسر دنیا آشنا است. عکس پسرم توسط تمام خبرگزارهای دنیا مخابره شده است و همه با تصویر احمد باطبی که پیراهن خونین یک دانشجو را بلند کرده است، اشنا هستند...




Here is what Iran has the right to do....

by Fair on

Be very clear- do you believe Ahmad Batebi is agent of America, or the west? If so you must provide proof and reason- and appearing on VOA would make most prominent Iranians guilty as well- just look at their guest list.

Now I will tell you what IRAN has the right to do after 30 years of mass imprisonment and torture of young innocent people like Mr. Batebi. It has the right to SHUT UP. That is right. They are NOBODY to talk about rights (and neither are you). What they have done to our people is way worse than what the US has done to Iraq. And in the US, people can and do speak up against their government, and can replace them with a vote, which they have done and will do. In our country, you hold up the shirt of your beaten up friend and they imprison and torture you for 9 years and stick your head in a toilet.

There are plenty of voices that capably and effectively speak out against US foreign policy (and some even appear on VOA TV), we need people like Mr. Batebi to speak about his experiences. He was IMPRISONED for the entire duration of the Iraq invasion, maybe if animals like Mortazavi and his bosses like Khamenei had not imprisoned him, he would have had the luxury to follow the Iraq war like you and me.

But he didn't. And you pathetic person have the gall the make demands on him to say anything at all.

Like Jamshid says, when little insects like you call Mr. Batebi anything negative, he should take it as a complement.


It is way way way too much to ask you to be FAIR.


A fine young man. May he get

by AnonymousTheMrs (not verified) on

A fine young man. May he get over the trauma and have some kind of a regular life. Iranian of the day is a title well deserved for this dude. And he is a dude, he is so cool. And dignified, polished, in control of himself, well mannered, well spoken etc. I wish I could do more. But he has to take care of himself. Mentally and emotionally, he is probably in a very unstable place for now. I hope he has access to some serious counselling.


aaj sr

by Anonymous4now on

Thank you for saying what I could not bring myself to say.  You are right this "Iran also has right" is a poor excuse for a human being.I am glad and happy Ahmad Batebi is out.  I have followed his imprisonment and his inhumane treatment for years now.  I hope to see the day when all Iranians are free.


ebi amirhosseini

For all who are.....!

by ebi amirhosseini on

imprisoned in Iran because of their political & religious beliefs 

در اينجا چار زندان است
به هر زندان دوچندان نقب، در هر نقب چندين حجره، در هر حجره
چندين مرد در زنجير...  از اين زنجيريان، يک تن، زناش را در تب ِ تاريک ِ بهتاني به ضربِ
دشنهئي کشته است.
از اين مردان، يکي، در ظهر ِ تابستان ِ سوزان، نان ِ فرزندان ِ خود را، بر
سر ِ برزن، به خون ِ نانفروش ِ سخت دندانگرد آغشتهست. از اينان، چند کس در خلوت ِ يک روز ِ بارانريز بر راه ِ رباخواري
کساني در سکوت ِ کوچه از ديوار ِ کوتاهي به روي ِ بام جَستهاند
کساني نيمشب، در گورهاي ِ تازه، دندان ِ طلاي ِ مردهگان را

من اما هيچکس را در شبي تاريک و توفاني     نکشتهام


من اما راه بر مرد ِ رباخواري     نبستهام


من اما نيمههاي ِ شب     زبامي بر سر ِ بامي نجستهام.

  در اينجا چار زندان است
به هر زندان دوچندان نقب و در هر نقب چندين حجره، در هر حجره
چندين مرد در زنجير... در اين زنجيريان هستند مرداني که مُردار ِ زنان را دوست ميدارند.
در اين زنجيريان هستند مرداني که در روياي ِشان هر شب زني در
وحشت ِ مرگ از جگر برميکشد فرياد. من اما، در زنان چيزي نمييابم ــ گر آن همزاد را روزي نيابم ناگهان،
خاموش ــ
من اما، در دل ِ کهسار ِ روياهاي ِ خود، جز انعکاس ِ سرد ِ آهنگ ِ صبور ِ
اين علفهاي ِ بياباني که ميرويند و ميپوسند و ميخشکند و
ميريزند، با چيزي ندارم گوش.
مرا گر خود نبود اين بند، شايد بامدادي، همچو يادي دور و لغزان،
ميگذشتم از تراز ِ خاک ِ سرد ِ پست... 

جُرم اين است!
جُرم اين است !



He is right revenge is not the answer,but ....

by Tahirih on

Educating and therapy of the torturer is the answer. As he says exposing human rights abuses in Iran is the answer too. I admire him for his courage. It would have been a shame if they killed him. What a fine young man.

May God be with him.






He will be remembered as our hero.

by Zeynab on

This young man will be in our history books forever. Shame on IRI.