Dead and Unknown


Dead and Unknown
by Cost-of-Progress


No matter how long you’ve been away, when you go to Iran, it feels like home. True that you do not know one street from another, true that all the names changed from what they used to be to those of some old terrorists or dead Arabs, but it feels like home.


When you’re home, you’re happy; except for one occasion.


We went to pay respect to our departed elders and parents who are buried in Behesht Zahra, the mega cemetery that occupies a very large parcel of land south of Tehran. We were accompanied by a family member whose brother had perished in the long and bloody war with Iraq that robbed many Iranian families of the chance to see their young sons mature and be a productive member of their society.


We first went to this young man’s grave-side who had perished at the age of 19 in a battle in Iraqi Kurdistan. Rows upon rows of the war dead greeted us when we came upon this particular part of the cemetery designated for those who died in the war. The feeling was surreal and strong as we walked the endless rows of the young men who had given their lives to defend their country as Persians have for thousands of years in various battles. Even now, weeks later, as I write these words my eyes are filled with tears.


Close to the graves with the names of the dead soldiers were the graves of the unknown……Again rows upon rows of the soldiers who has given their lives for Iran, but now laid dead and unrecognized as if they had never existed.


That day I cried for my distant relative, I cried for all the young men whose names appeared on their tombstones, and I cried for all the unknown soldiers who had died for Iran.


That day I cried for Iran.


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Do they respect the dead?

by omeedvar on

A few years ago, we went to Ebn Baveh Cemetery to pay respect to some members of our family. We could not find their graves. When we asked the local people, we found out that, IRI workers were ordered to destroy the private mausoleums with graves, and during the bulldozing, the surrounding graves were damaged or destroyed. Ours were among the surroundings.

Then we went to Behesht Zahra to pay respect to our elders, and to those who died during Iran-Iraq war. The mega cemetery was almost full to the capacity, mostly with the martyrs of the eight years of war, and those died during the revolution.

I remembered the day when A. Khomeini arrived in Tehran, and went to Behesht Zahra for his first speech. He said.” Shah Ghabrestanha ra abaad kard, va shahr ha ra kharaab", that is because he had never seen such a big and modern cemetery in his life; and he still did not have a chance to see the progress in the cities. Looking back, one can say that he was the one who filled Behesht Zahra cemetery, "Abaad kard!".


Welcome back COP ...

by Bavafa on

In our last exchange, you were about to leave for a long overseas trip to the Sheikh land and I had been wondering how you fair out?

A very touching blog, many thanks for writing it and expressing your feeling that way. War is an ugly thing, one that its effect is not well known unless one has experience it.

I think it is very important, at least for me, to honor all of those non-decision making folks who sacrificed so much to save and defend their mother land.

My ever lasting gratitude, admiration and salute to all of them

'Vahdat' is the main key to victory 


Esfand Aashena

Indeed that is the hardest part.

by Esfand Aashena on

When we are younger and go back home our heads are playing with our asses and we don't recognize the sorrow of losing a loved one, until it happens to us.  As we get older and these events happen it changes our lives and how we look at life itself.

Myself am now thinking about mortality more often and don't buy junk anymore thinking what the heck for?  I'm hoping as years go by and these sad moments become more distant I can get back to having my head play with my ass again!  Then again by that time one of my legs will probably be edging the grave! 

Everything is sacred