This is not the first time I have noticed how Maziar Bahari and his fellow "journalists" have been trying to sell their biaised pro republican narrative to diaspora readers ( particularly the young generation) and by extension to the western media outlets sponsoring Iranwire.
After posing as a "victim" of the regime and turning his experience into a "Movie : Rose water " ( see my blog below) he himself has been supporting via west residing IRI lobbies like NIAC he now pens his editorials with staggering hypocrisy.
Claiming his cartoonists' "masterpiece" would be regarded as "treasonous" to Monarchists ( and mullahs ) he attempts to put the current theocracy and the former progressive monarchy as one and the same when it comes to treatment of women in the public sphere.
An Irony given how much historians acknowledge the unpredecedent rights the Shah of Iran confered to Iranian women which was unpredecedent in most of the middle east and even Europe.
An example is the right given to women to vote which preceded even Switzerland.
Iranwire which like Tehran Bureau have become one of the major sources of information on Iran and often quoted by liberal news medias like the NY Times in the US or the Guardian in the UK has managed to reach out beyond the young generation Diaspora in "explaining" Iran and it's history to them from their own biased perspective.
The reason is fairly simple : Makes sure that the recent slogans in favor of the monarchy heard during the last protests come across as "marginal"
Rather than analyze Maziar Bahari's bias I chose to add to his "masterpiece" cartoon photos taken by western Models in Persepolis and Mosques in IRan during the Shah's Era but also photos of the Female milirary personal in miniskirts who paraded in Persepolis during the 25 century celebrations of the persian empire in 1971.
These photos can be found very easily if you google them. Why nobody bothers to respond to such recurrent bias by Iran wire and other so called diaspora media outlets often run by pro regime apologists who in recent years have basically taken over as "spokespersons' of our expat community is truly nauseating.
If such bias narratives which keep distorting our history for purely ideological purposes ( for let it be no doubt such assessments as Bahari's are not innocent. They are intended.) they exist for a real purpose : make sure that the monarchist reality of our society and the genuine support it has including amongst young generation iranians is dismissed by western observers and so called "experts" on Iran.
Being of Baharis generation and having lived in Pahlavi IRan I can vouch that his narrative is not only biased but a blunt lie.
Below his latest newsletter which I discovered in my email box and which prompted me to write this blog.
iranwire.com weekly newsletter, 9th February 2017
Sunday is the 39th anniversary of the 1979 Islamic Revolution. We commemorate this anniversary with a cartoon that would be heretical for all sides in 1979. Our brilliant cartoonist Mana Neyestani has drawn another masterpiece. Inspired by the reliefs at Persepolis depicting soldiers of the Persian Empire, Mana shows a brave woman holding her scarf on a stick standing ahead of all the male bearded soldiers. It reflects the complexity of Iran today. An Iran where women are the pioneers of all social and political change and where religious fervor is replaced by national pride. Thirty-nine years ago, this cartoon would have been regarded as reactionary by the revolutionaries and treasonous by monarchists who deified the Persian Empire.
The Islamic government has no idea what to do with these brave women protesting against the forced hijab. Iran’s prosecutor dismissed them as “ignorant” and “childish.” For the most part, authorities seem to be trying to downplay the protests in the hopes they’ll go away. But now men have joined in, too. IranWire spoke to one of them, a 20-year-old named Mehdi, who says he has witnessed how the women in his life have faced discrimination, and since sharia doesn’t endorse forced hijab, it’s his duty as a religious man to defend women’s right to protest. IranWire also looked at a recently-published government survey about the Iranian public’s view on hijab. The research was carried out by the Iranian President’s Center for Strategic Studies. The findings pretty much point to what we have sensed: That most Iranians do not support the policy of enforced hijab.
If the hijab protests weren’t enough to challenge the Supreme Leader, last week reformist politician and activist Mehdi Karroubi, who has been under house arrest since 2011, sent an open letter to Ayatollah Khamenei, accusing him of tyranny and abuse of power. His letter shows just what a failure attempts to reach an agreement with Karroubi about his release have been.
Iran’s football team (yes, it’s football not soccer) will be playing in the FIFA World Cup this summer. The corrupt officials at Iran’s football federation and the Revolutionary Guards who run most of Iran’s football league teams would love to embezzle and fill their pockets quietly while the nation cheers on Iran’s football heroes. But the federation has a legendary nemesis who doesn’t allow them to get away with theft. Iranian football hero Ali Karimi has been outspoken about the dubious financial dealings of the federation, especially Mehdi Taj, its president. According to Karimi, the federation has resorted to the morality police to incriminate him. Karimi’s answer: “Tell me where I should come so you can arrest me. I’m not afraid of you!”
In another prison letter, Baquer Namazi, the 81-year-old Iranian-American who has been detained for close to two years now, has spoken to his family and supporters. “To overcome the formidable challenges, much sacrifice is needed and I am willing to be one of the victims with the hope that the pain will not be in vain,” he writes. It’s a heart-wrenching statement from a man whom I’ve known for almost two decades. A true Iranian patriot who has faced repeated injustice from Iranian authorities, but has never lost hope in the country. As news emerged on Tuesday that he has been returned to Evin Prison after a short medical leave, our thoughts are with his family, and with his son, my dear friend Siamak Namazi, also currently in prison. You can read my 2016 blog about Siamak here.
I feel for Siamak and Baquer’s family, and I hope all prisoners of conscience can be released soon and be reunited with their families. Their incarceration does nothing but deny the country of their talents and the talents of thousands of Iranians with dual citizenship who would love to return and serve their country.
Budget allocations under Ahmadinejad and Rouhani from 2009 to 2017 clearly contain significant differences. Ahmadinejad’s focus on public services prompted an increase in the welfare budget during his second term. Conversely, Rouhani’s closer ties to academia and the higher education sector meant he allocated more to the science and educational sector budget during his first term.
Under Ahmadinejad, the industrial sector had a larger budget allocation, while under Rouhani the cultural sector enjoyed a bigger share. It should be noted that this funding increase did not only affect culture and arts centers, but also the budgets of Islamic publicity institutions that are often critical of Rouhani’s government.
Under Ahmadinejad, the health sector also took a larger share of the budget, despite Rouhani’s commitment to expanding healthcare.
There are similarities, however. For example, the military, local governments, and agricultural sectors largely received the same share of the budget under both Ahmadinejad and Rouhani.
It is important to note that budget allocations do not tell the whole story of governments’ exploitation of resources. In analyzing the housing sector, for instance, the Central Bank funding used by Ahmadinejad to finance the Mehr Housing project was not reflected in his budgets.
As always, please let me know if you have any comments.