Iran Hopes

A Weblog on Iranian Affairs (Formerly Iran Votes 2005)

Thursday, June 30, 2005

Mr. Ahmadinejad has now become at the center of a row over his alleged involvement in the hostage-taking incident at US Embassy in Tehran in 1979. (See BBC report here.) It seems that a number of former 'hostages' have 'identified' Ahmadinejad as one of the hostage takers. But they are wrong. Ahmadinejad certainly looks very much alike one of the hostage takers (except that Ahmadinejad is noticeably shorter) but he was not involved in the incident.
The former hostage takers do not hide their past and are known to Iranians. They have occupied top positions in the government and the parliament. For example, Maesoomeh Ebtekar is currently serving as Khatami's deputy and head of the Organization for Protection of Environment. Ebrahim Assghar Zadeh (former member of Tehran Council) and Dr. Zafarghandi (Dean of Tehran Medical School) were hostage takers too. Mohsen Mirdamadi, another hostage taker, was a Majlis MP during the sixth session when the so called reformists were in majority. As one of the 'reformists', he was the head of Majlis Commission for Security and Foreign Policy too. Prior to that he had done a university degree in Britain. He has been contacted by the BBC on this matter and has dismissed the allegations over Ahmadinejad's role in the hostage-taking. So Americans need not worry, Ahmadinejad might have a terrorist background, but his victims were (and perhaps will be) Iranian nationals only.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

My name is Bobby. I live in the states and have been following the story of Ahmadinejad since the election. I had every sense that Iranians are probably well aware of the identity of the hostage takers, and I am sure in view of the activities of the Revolution, some even regard them as heroes. THe problem with American's is that most of them don't know about the revolution, what it meant and how it happenned, to put these things in proper context. Thus, when american's hear that the guy in charge used to be (allegedly) a hostage taker, there is a sudden clamor for the foil, as if even the Iranians had been duped, and we need to let them know that they elected a hostage taker. Silly Americans. e-mail me: I am working on an article for American's to understand political dynamics in Iran. I could always use a great source.

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Blogger Windsteed said...

Thanks very much Bobby for your interesting comment. I don't think Americans are silly but I certainly agree with you on your point that they need to get some education on politics in other countries particularly in the Middle Eastern countries. It is no use making judgements solely on the basis of the (usually misleading) information that is fed to them by the meida. I am glad that you are visiting my weblog. On the Iranian Revolution and the hostage taking crisis, I would like to recommend a great book by Edwar Said, Covering Islam (if you haven't already read it.)Also the book All the Shah's Men by Kinzer can be helpful for your article. Cheers

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