Monday, July 13, 2009

Beautiful Iran

About Iran: Even seasoned journalists who have covered the most atrocious and spectacular events on our planet have been moved to the core when they found themselves in the midst of Iranians singing, dancing and marching to the voting booths, and later protesting what they believed was a fraudulent election, and for which they were brutally beaten, arrested, tortured and in some instances even killed. These journalists reported seeing people courageously rescuing one another, even members of the riot police. And again, it is the images of women that they report having carried home with them.

In a moving column in the New York Times by Roger Cohen, he writes,

“No news aggregator tells of the ravaged city exhaling in the dusk, nor summons the defiant cries that rise into the night. No miracle of technology renders the lip-drying taste of fear. No algorithm captures the hush of dignity, nor evokes the adrenalin rush of courage coalescing, nor traces the fresh raw line of a welt. I confess that, out of Iran, I am bereft. I have been thinking about the responsibility of bearing witness. It can be singular, still. Interconnection is not presence. A chunk of me is back in Tehran, between Enquelab (Revolution) and Azadi (Freedom), where I saw the Iranian people rise in the millions to reclaim their votes and protest the violation of their Constitution… Never again will Ahmadinejad speak of justice without being undone by the Neda Effect — the image of eyes blanking, life abating and blood blotching across the face of Neda Agha-Soltan.”

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