Friday, June 19, 2009

'Dedicated to tomorrow's children'

Friday night in Iran (video)

'I will participate in the demonstrations tomorrow. Maybe they will turn violent. Maybe I will be one of the people who is going to get killed. I'm listening to all my favourite music. I even want to dance to a few songs. I always wanted to have very narrow eyebrows. Yes, maybe I will go to the salon before I go tomorrow! There are a few great movie scenes that I also have to see. I should drop by the library, too. It's worth to read the poems of Forough and Shamloo again. All family pictures have to be reviewed, too. I have to call my friends as well to say goodbye. All I have are two bookshelves which I told my family who should receive them. I'm two units away from getting my bachelors degree but who cares about that. My mind is very chaotic. I wrote these random sentences for the next generation so they know we were not just emotional and under peer pressure. So they know that we did everything we could to create a better future for them. So they know that our ancestors surrendered to Arabs and Mongols but did not surrender to despotism. This note is dedicated to tomorrow's children...'

As the general crowds spread into their homes, militia style Mousavi supporters were out on the streets 'Basiji hunting.' Their resolve is no less than these thugs -- they after hunting them down. They use their phones, their childhood friends, their intimate knowledge of their districts and neighbours to plan their attacks -- they're organized and they're supported by their community so they have little fear. They create the havoc they're after, ambush the thugs, use their Cocktail Molotovs, disperse and re-assemble elsewhere and then start again -- and the door of every house is open to them as safe harbour -- they're community connected. The Basiji's are not.

These are not the students in the dorms, they're the street young -- they know the ways better than most thugs -- and these young, a surprising number of them girls, are becoming more agile in their ways as each night passes on.

When unarmed women show their defiance towards baton-wielding militiamen we are witnessing a timeless battle. On one side are individuals risking their lives because they see their own fate as indivisible from that of others. On the other side are individuals who see their own interests as indivisible from those of the state and who have thereby abandoned loyalty to the dictates of their own conscience.

We see how high human beings -- individually and collectively -- can rise and in the same moment how low they can fall. We are moved and unsettled. Moved to see the boldness that frail individuals can muster. Unsettled to be reminded of the petty fearfulness that marks the distance between our own cosseted... lives and those lives now courageously at risk all across Iran.
Image source here.