The Mullahs' Achilles heel: Iran's youth
national post

The Mullahs' Achilles heel: Iran's youthPayam Akhavan,

National Post Published: Saturday, April 19, 2008

This week, Iranian Nobel peace laureate and renowned human rights lawyer Shirin Ebadi announced that death threats against her have intensified. Most recently, a shadowy group calling itself the "Association of anti-Baha'is" warned her to "watch your tongue" and stop "serving the foreigners and the Baha'is" -- a reference to Iran's largest religious minority, whose faith has been described by the government as a "heresy" and vigorously persecuted. Particularly disturbing is the warning that because her daughter is involved in the "un-Islamic and Baha'i based faith… we will kill her."

For me, these shocking statements have immediate relevance, both because Dr. Ebadi's daughter is my law student at McGill University, and because this legacy of hatemongering and violence continues to haunt me as an Iranian Baha'i many years after adopting Canada as my home.

My solace is that the recent intensification of attacks against the exponents of a burgeoning Iranian civil society -- human rights activists, labour union leaders, student movements, intellectuals, journalists, religious minorities, even dissident Islamic clerics -- is a sign of the Islamic hardliners' desperation to cling to power amidst the disillusionment of the ... >>>

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