Page 2 of the Sunday Bismarck Tribune (Nov. 5) had a story about anti-American demonstrations in Iran. Included was a photo of several schoolgirls holding up their hands, with the colors of the Iranian flag on their forefingers and middle fingers. It appeared they were showing the peace sign.
The photo triggered my recollection of a book I reviewed for the Tribune, April 19, 2009. The book, “Lipstick Jihad,” gave a very insightful presentation of the Iranian citizens, and how they cope with their oppressive theocratic regime. They oblige their rulers when ordered to demonstrate in the streets, but they often turn it into a party event sub-rosa.
In June 2009, in response to what the people felt was a rigged election, the citizens demonstrated against their leaders. It became known as the Green Revolution. A young woman, Neda Aga-Soltan, was shot while at the anti-government demonstration. The video of the event went viral and she became a martyr. However, the revolution was crushed, and Neda’s grave desecrated.
The demonstrators had hoped for a sign of American support, but it did not come. “Bloomberg” suggested our president did not want to jeopardize his standing with the mullahs in negotiating the nuclear deal.
There are those that suggest that the Green Movement is not dead. Let’s hope that the photo of the students making the peace sign is a favorable omen.
Hal Hase, Bismarck