Mahmood e kamaangir


Mahmood e kamaangir
by Ari Siletz

I was working on a story where a narrator living a thousnd years in the future writes about the IRI dynasty. In the fog of history he confuses the IRI with the dynasty that briefly ruled Iran just before Darius IV founded the neo-Achaemenids. reunified the Persian speaking world and annexed Los Angeles. But never mind all that; the historian is describing the famous "Ahmadinejad dilemma."  Legend has it that this Grand Vazir knew nothing of politics or economics. So during a tense period of ethnic uprisings, with foreign "Tooranians" at the  gate and with Iran's back against the wall, he decided to pull an Arash e Kamaangir. Since he was not skilled with the bow he decided to use the only talents he had: legend has it that the held a doctorate in kaashi kaari--or something like that--and he was really good with Microsoft Paint. 

So one day he climbed a podium, tore off his clothes, and rashly announced to the world that he could color the Iran map using only red, white and green, and if he failed the Sepaah and Baseej would stand down and let the "Tooranians"  take what they want. Of course he had learned in Kaashi kaari class that any pattern--even provinces on a map--can be colored using only four colors such that no two neighboring provinces have the same color. But maps where fewer colors are needed are imaginable. So,  on the otuside chance that Iran was one of those maps where only three colors were needed, he stupidly risked the country which beloged to seventy million Iranians.

Of course Ahmadinjead failed miserably, but an old man with real Arash potential appeared from Khorasan province and negotiated a deal at the UN where Iran could keep whatever territory Arash could color using only red, white, and green. If a fourth color was needed, that province was lost. It is said his solution was the best that could be done. Well, "best" is a matter of opinion. Do you try to keep the most land or the most valuable resouces? Or do you try to keep the country as ethnically homogenous as possible...? Anyway, the above map is a "land grab" solution where Iran kept some provinces and lost some (purple). 

Here are the questions the historian from the future wants our help with: 

Most important question: which provinces did we lose?

Puzzle question: Can the coloring be improved so Iran keeps more provinces? More land? 

 "Get your mind out of Tehran and oil" question: Was Arash wise in his choice of which provinces to keep and which to sacrifice? 


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more from Ari Siletz

Ari, once it is recognised there are nationalistic aspirations..

by Roozbeh_Gilani on

There are two ways to approach it. One is to use the brute force of violence and military rule (what we have in Kurdistan today) which would only worsen the situation and would lead to calls for complete separation. Alternatively a known and proven methode is the federalism. Federalism comes in all froms. We have the swiss federal republic or British united kingdom. I happen to have lived in both countries and have been impressed by the facts that in these countries, each region use their own language, run their own affairs, yet the country is united and cemented by common denominators. Iran is a perfect example where this can happen due to our very long history as a country (much longer than Britain and certainly switzerland). How it is going to be divided, you asked? the answer is very simple. Put it to referondum. Maybe the answer to referondum would be that kurds and balooch people dont want a federal system at all!

Bottom line Ari, will of people is to be respected and obeyed, regrdless of their race and nationality, even if we disagree with their decision. Otherwise it'd be hypocritical for us to call ourselves democrats. 

"Personal business must yield to collective interest."

Ari Siletz

Roozbeh, which kords?

by Ari Siletz on

No doubt as to Gilani vatan parasti. How would a federal Iran be divided into states? Keeping in mind, for instance, that the Kords in Kermanshah, Ilam, and Khorasan are moslty Shiites and do not share the separatist aspiratation of the Sunni Kords (about 50/50 split in Iran's Shiite/Sunni Kord population). Does Sunni Kordestan province get its own state in this federation with Kermanshah and Ilam Kords forming the state of "Kermilam?" How about Azerbaijan and Khuzestan? Do you anticipate migrations into and out of these new states, polarizing the Iranian population further?



ما گیلانی‌ها خیلی‌ وطن پرستیم، به قرآن قسم!


No need for Arash!

But brutal policies of the islamist regime towards the national minorities, in particular sunnis, is definitely creating perfect grounds for fermenting  separatist sentiments. I see Kurdistan, Balouchistan, Khusistan and Azarbijan the key areas where we could end up with majority of people demanding complete separation from Iran. Indeed there is evidence that majority might already exists in Kurdistan and balouchistan. But there is a way to avoid that, and that is called federalism. It will work in Iran given thousands of years of history of all above mentioned nationalities living under the united flag of Iran.

But the islamist regime must go first... 

"Personal business must yield to collective interest."

Ari Siletz

Khuzestan next to split

by Ari Siletz on


As you probably know, Ghom is being considered as the new Capital of Iran after the seat of government is moved from Tehran (due to geologists' prediction that Tehran will soon be destroyed by an earthquake). I suggest we let the seat of the IRI government move to Ghom first and then give it up. On the other hand, maybe we should move the people of Tehran to Ghom, let Tehran collapse on the IRI government, then give up Tehran province. Tough choice!


By the way, Khuzestan is probably the next province to be broken up into more than one province (like Khorasan in 2004). There is much talk of Dezful becoming the captial of "North Khuzestan". So maybe Arash should negotiate a waiting period to see how Khuzestan is broken up before deciding how to paint the map.


Let them have Ghom

by divaneh on

I am not good with colouring, but if I was that would be my strategy.

Give the Ghom and the land of Touranian will be destroyed in a few years.

If it is inevitable to have some purple Ostans, then make sure they are in the middle and surrounded by other ostans of Iran (i.e not at the border). They would not be much good without unrestricted connection to the outside world.

Ari Siletz

Province areas and ulterior motives

by Ari Siletz on

P_T_B_A Here's a map with the areas of Iran provinces that can be useful with the puzzle question.



I sense ulterior motives in Arash's solution. He may have been able to hang on to Hormozgan with valuable ports and big area, perhaps at the expense of losing Zanjan, which has a smaller area and whose main claim to fame is just knife making (and a really good research center). Zanjan is strategically important, being along road and railway routes to Tabriz and Turkey, but is that as important as Hormozgan which is home to Bandar Abbas? At any rate, I don't think Arash's solution is as optimized for area as he wanted to believe. He may have had subconscious motives, for example, in abandoning Qom and Kordestan. But if he's going to ignore area for other motives, why keep Baluchestan and throw away Hormozgan? Weird!




Good questions

by P_T_B_A on

1. We lost Kurdestan, Ilaam, Kohkiluyeh & Boeer Aham, Hormozgaan, Qum, and Qazvin.

3. Kurdestan will separate from Iran anyway, so it was an obvious choice.  Ilaam is a toss up.  I don't know what Kohkiluyek & Boeer Ahmad is good for, so not a big deal to lose it.  I'd like to keep Hormozgaan for its strategic importance.  Qum should have been nuked a long time ago anyway.  Qazvin could go either way!

2. Since I am at work right now, I can't be doing coloring or I'll get fired!  I'll answer the secong question when I go home.