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Yesterday, we showed you the extremely disturbing video of an Iranian woman, Neda, being shot at a protest in Tehran. At the time, not much was known about her—who she was, why she was at the protest, or even if her name was really Neda. But today, the details are emerging. We now know that Neda’s last name was Agha-Soltan, and that she was only 26 years old. She majored in philosophy, but even though women in Iran aren’t allowed to sing in public, she secretly took lessons and wanted to be a pop singer. In fact, she was with her voice coach when she died. The two had gone to the protest, but as it started to turn violent, headed back to their car. When Neda stepped out to get a breath of fresh air (the car had been roasting in the sun all day) she was shot, most likely by a sniper on top of a building. [NY Times] Keep reading »
Yesterday we posted about Neda, the Iranian woman who was gunned down during protests in Tehran this weekend. Her brutal death was caught on camera and posted on YouTube, and many websites, including The Frisky, have posted it. She’s been deemed the “face” of the opposition movement in Iran, particularly representative of the women who have been at the forefront of the protests against the results of the corrupt presidential election. But some are wondering if Neda’s martrydom is appropriate and just. Keep reading »
Sometimes, I think we assume that women who live in super-sexist countries are helpless while we—the almighty Americans—are enlightened and free. We look at gals in countries like Iran and feel pity, or the need to rush in and save them from having to wear burkas. But I think we’re being way too presumptive. Women everywhere can confront difficult circumstances and overcome obstacles, no matter what their race, economic background, or living situation. We aren’t stronger because we don’t have to wear floor-length skirts or look down when a man walks by. We’re just lucky.
Hear me out, I’m not saying that women in Iran are treated as well as women in the United States. They aren’t, by a long shot. But just because a woman is in an oppressive situation doesn’t mean she’s helpless or hopeless—believing that is an insult to women everywhere. Women in Iran don’t just passively take their treatment. Believe it or not, there is a strong feminist movement in Iran. Women aren’t exactly burning their bras (and did that even happen/work?), but they’re trying hard to force change. Keep reading »
Watch out (or celebrate), Iran, Zahra Rahnavard may be your next Hillary Clinton. She’s an artist, a politician, and also the fire behind husband Mir-Hossein Mousavi’s presidential campaign. From what I’ve seen, it appears she might even have more followers than he does — crowds of women (and men) roar when she shows up to an event.
Campaign songs have caused more of a ruckus in this presidential race than teenage pregnancy and extra-marital affairs combined. It all started with a John scandal, when John McCain stole “Our Country” by John Cougar Mellencamp from John Edwards after he got axed in the primaries. Then, Mellencamp told McCain to stop using the track, because the liberal musician didn’t want his tune affiliated with the Republican candidate. After that, hippie balladeer Jackson Browne sued McCain’s campaign to protest the use of his “Running On Empty” in an attack ad against Barack Obama. So, we here at the Frisky decided to put together a voting day soundtrack that everyone can groove to. We might have some differences on our ballots, but our booties bump to the same beats. After the jump, The Frisky’s Election Day Mixtape. Keep reading »
Women in Iran will soon have cars made just for them. According to BBC News, Iran’s biggest car producer, Iran Khodro, will make cars suited for females with features such as automatic transmission, parking and navigation aids, a jack for changing tires without getting grease on clothes, and feminine colors. So, the car is sexist in a way (what are these “feminine colors” anyway?), but at least women will be able to get around the town. And really, there shouldn’t be anything shameful about driving an automatic. Other than the feminine paint job, don’t these special cars sounds just like the ones most Americans drive? [BBC] Keep reading »
Did you know the U.S. exports stuff to Iran? Lots and lots of stuff, in fact. During the time that President Bush has been in office, at least $158 million worth of cigarettes alone were sent there. “Our sanctions are targeted against the regime, not the people,” said Adam Szubin, director of the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control, which enforces trade sanctions. Strangely, some of the products that the government doesn’t want the people of Iran to be without include: bull semen ( “The animals we’re working with are genetically superior to those in many parts of the world,” said the company’s marketing manager.); at least $101,000 worth of bras; $175,000 in sculptures; nearly $96,000 worth of cosmetics; $8,900 in perfume; $30,000 in musical instruments and parts; $21,000 in golf carts and/or snowmobiles; and $3,300 in fur clothing. [AP via CNN] Keep reading »
In a letter to Iran’s vice president, Prosecutor General Ghorban Ali Dori Najafabadi writes that importing Western toys into the country is a “danger” that needs to be stopped. In Iran, importing Western toys is discouraged but not illegal, and many toys are smuggled into the country. Najafabadi says their increased visibility is worrisome: “The displays of personalities such as Barbie, Batman, Spiderman and Harry Potter … as well as the irregular importation of unsanctioned computer games and movies are all warning bells to the officials in the cultural arena.” Maybe he’s just pissed he doesn’t have the Kimora Lee Simmons Barbie, complete with a faux-Chinchilla coat. [AP and SFGate.com] Keep reading »
If you think America is hard on our cheaters, philanderers have been stoned to death in Iran up until this year. Although there has been a moratorium on the harsh capital punishment since 2002, last year, Jafar Kiani, who was accused of adultery, died by stoning when local authorities took justice into their own hands. His lover, Mokarrameh Ebrahimi, remained in prison with their son for over a decade. But Ebrahimi managed to beat the odds of facing the same fate yesterday in court. The 34-year-old mother not only had her death sentence repealed, but immediately released. Ebrahimi was in such disbelief she told her lawyer, â€œIt may be a trick — they aren’t going to release me, I can’t believe it.â€ Although death by stoning is still set in stone in traditional Iranian law, with twelve people still in jail awaiting their sentence to be carried out, this victory is truly groundbreaking. [BBC] Keep reading »