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The Eternal Treasure

Journal of Resistance Literature Reviews and Scholarly Articles Issue no.2, January 2013

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‫موسسه فرهنگی هرنی و انتشارات بین املللی الهدی‬ ‫مؤسسة الهدی الثقافیه و الفنیه للنرش الدولی‬ Alhoda International, Cultural, Artistic The Eternal Treasure 2

The Eternal Treasure Concessionaire: Alhoda international, cultural, artistic and publication Editor in chief: Nastaran Poursalehi Editorial Board: Maryam Asadi, Ahad Goudarziani, Asgar Abbasnejad, Akram Dashtban Tehran - P.O.Box 14155_4363 www.alhodapublication.ir info@alhodapublication.ir Tٰel: +98 21 22211211 - 22206714


Editorial 5 The Longest War from the West’s Perspective 7 Wet Eye 11 A Battle in the Sky 15 Lend Me Your Skull, Brother 19 Three Florist Girls 24 Heart beliefs manifested as drama in “Love Contribution” 27 Wandering In Strange Land 33 Iran-Iraq War in Mirror of World Media 35

The sound of Halabja’s silence resonates all over the world 43

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Iran-Iraq War in the United Nations Documents 39


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Editorial

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“Literature� is the historical memory of each and every nation to record all experienced events on papers. War is also among these events leading writers to write about different aspects of war. However, there is no difference in narrating war events in prosaic or poetical style or writing in form of a documentary. Iraq war against Iran was no exception, because writers started to write from the very first year (1980) and have left various works from themselves. As an example, a short glance at 32-year-old background of Holy Defense literature indicates the publication of almost 1400 long and short stories as well as novels. Although in early years of forming this genre a large number of writers inclined to write with regard to excitement and their own experience of war atmosphere, with the passage of time the literature of Holy Defense evolved and ultimately reached a level of stability. Writers and readers got familiar with one another’s needs and finally a definite number of professional writers continued to write in this genre and produced


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more qualitative works. Therefore, what one might observe in recent decade is the consistent form of Holy Defense literature and reliable stories of this genre. Although two decades ago readers tended to read short stories about war, in the last decade readers are in favor of reading novels. As a matter of fact, in the past few years, publication of memoirs entailing stories about the Iraqimposed war on Iran, like “Da” and “the Leftover Foot”, has come into vogue and the works are lauded by many as prime storytelling references. Likewise, publication of Holy Defense works and various literary festivals like the Short Short Holy Defense Stories Festival have spiked in Iran. In regard to choosing the subject, during the mentioned period writers had chosen their subjects more circumspectly and even young writers who had not experienced the eight- year-old war entered into this field and made great attempt to write in this genre. In this regard one might mention the fourteen-volume novel entitled “The Road of War”, “Chess with the Doomsday machine” and “Journey to Heading 270 Degrees” which have been published in recent years and some of them have been translated into English and French.


The Longest War from the West’s Perspective

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At the end of each event, one can arrive at a final conclusion by gathering all the information that has been distributed sporadically. Iraq war against Iran is still under study with the application of the same method. Inside Iran, historical, military and cultural research centers have been working on it for years and have been publishing their results in the form of written sources and documents. A branch of this research addresses the study of foreign analyses. In this regard, the outlooks and viewpoints of foreign researchers who have arrived at certain conclusions and analyses regarding Iraq’s war against Iran is This book has two taken into consideration. characteristics: In recent years Marz va Boom it has described the Publication center has taken up the process of Iraq’s translation and publication of such imposed war against works in Iran. “The Longest War: Iran and the other is The Iran- Iraq Military Conflict”, the development of written by Dilip Hiro is one of those the war by Iraq and works which was published by the reactions of the Routledge in the US in 1990. This Iraqi government book was translated into Farsi by to it. Alireza Farshchi, Reza Faridzadeh and Saeed Kafi and published in 442 pages. The publisher has reminded the readers that this book was first published in English in 1990, that is, two years after Iraq’s war against Iran came to an end. Furthermore, since in the two decades after the end of the war lots of information regarding this important period in the history of Iran was gathered and verified, some of the information offered by the author was corrected in the footnotes. In spite of having some deficiencies in its historical and military information about Iran which has led to


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some wrong conclusions, “The Longest War” has two important characteristics. The first characteristic is that it has described the process of Iraq’s imposed war against Iran according to the most important incidents that happened in different fields, and has analyzed the war measures of the two parties by putting these incidents together. The other important characteristic for the readers of the book is the development of the war by Iraq and the reactions of the Iraqi government to it. Because of the all the suppressions inflicted by Saddam’s dictator regime on the country, the information about how Iraq started up and continued the war against Iran is very limited. But the author of “The Longest War: The IranIraq Military Conflict” has categorized the collected information in a way that makes the failure of the aggressive government of Iraq quite obvious. Because the author was not living in the two countries involved in the war and had more access to information regarding international reactions towards Iraq’s war against Iran, he has come to the conclusion that many of these countries have put much effort and negotiations into helping Saddam defeat the Islamic Revolution of Iran. For example, “In 1983 American politicians came to the conclusion that it was impossible for Iraq to win the war and the war had only two outcomes (Iran’s


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victory or a dead-end in the war). US officials believed that Iran’s victory in the war would lead to the collapse of the pro-West monarchy states in the Persian Gulf. They did not think that with the establishment of an Islamic republic in Iraq or any other country an inclination towards Russia would begin; however, the failure of a group of pro-West rulers in a region that holds more than half the world’s known energy reserves was seen as an unprecedented disaster. All in all, Iraq’s defeat in the war was a heavy blow to America’s interests, and the US National Security Council reached the same conclusion in its investigation in the fall of 1983. So Washington prepared some plans for its spiritual and financial support for Iraq. In November 1983, the US National Security advisor issued a classified order in this regard and gave a summary of all diplomatic and military measures that the US was going to adopt in order to help Baghdad. Pentagon started to draw up a possible operation plan to help Iraq with a military operation in case Baghdad or one of its Western allies asked for help. Donald Rumsfeld, the US special representative at that time went to Iraq in mid-December to submit (US President) Ronald Reagan’s written message to Saddam”. (Page 211 and 212) The translation of such books in Iran aims at studying the world’s view of Iraq’s war against Iran. Foreign authors of these works may seem impartial and unbiased, but the truth is that they can’t hide their Western views and their form-the-position-of-power attitude towards the Middle East developments and especially Iran. This viewpoint, particularly in “The Longest War: The IranIraq Military Conflict”, is rooted in the sources of the information that the author uses. Most of these sources are Western newspapers and, to a lesser extent, the media of Arab countries who supported Saddam during Iraq’s war against Iran.


Wet Eye

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Fatemeh Dust Kami has recited the memories and recollections of Behjat Afraz in her book “Wet Eye”. This book has been published by Payam Azadegan Publishing Center (http://www.mfpa.ir/) in 304 pages. At the beginning of this book, Behjat Afraz reminds the readers that the book holds a small part of her recollections of 18 years of work in the Department of the Captured and Lost Soldiers in Iraq’s war against Iran. Her memories start with the first day of war (September 22, 1980) and her work at the Educational Department of Karaj, and cover certain memories of her meetings with some of the families of the soldiers who were captured or had gone missing in the war. They would come to her for any news about their captured or missing beloveds, and Afraz felt she was obliged to do whatever she can to help them out; from sympathizing with them to making a contract with an optometry to make glasses needed by the Iranian captured soldiers in Iraq and delivering them through the Red Cross. But the hardest thing for her was facing the families of soldiers who had gone missing in the war, families who came to her for any possible news about their soldier. These moments and scenes helped Behjat Afraz think of some initiatives: “Through the letters we received and the various information we got from released soldiers and the representatives of the Red Cross, we found out that our dear prisoners held in various camps of the Ba’athist regime of Iraq had not given in to their demands and had kept their dignity and honor at all times and had proved to the world that although their bodies were held in the enemy’s prisons, their noble souls had not succumbed to their dominance and they worked for the growth and benefit of humankind. Therefore, I did not feel good about using the word “prisoner” in my letters to their families and also to governmental departments


and organizations. I felt that the word “prisoner” has some inevitable negative connotation which did not go hand in hand with our soldiers’ attitude and behavior. Therefore, I decided to replace the word “prisoner” with “free captive”. Many people developed a liking towards this description later, so much so that in 1990, before our prisoners were released, when the Committee of Support for the Prisoners and the Missing decided to establish a base for helping them they agreed to the title I suggested, “The Free Captives Support Administration”.” (Page 93 and 94) In her memories, there are also many accounts such as this one: “Before the release of a great number of prisoners in August 16, 1990, we had 19 cases of the release of a few prisoners. In these cases, the Iraqi government released prisoners who were disabled, afflicted with incurable diseases and very elderly, and sent them to the Islamic Republic of Iran. The number

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of those who were set free varied, from 18 people to 100 people. All in all about 900 prisoners were released in 19 separate incidents. “Of course, in some cases Saddam went back on his word, something that was painful both for the prisoners and for their families who awaited the arrival of their children. For example, he would give us 50 names and we would inform their families and make the necessary preparations, but when we went to welcome them, we’d find out that he has released just 30 people and they had taken the remaining 20 back to the camp from Baghdad’s airport. That was the worst psychological torture inflicted on our prisoners and the families who eagerly looked forward to seeing their children. He sometimes even went further than that, setting a date for the release of the prisoners and then, when we went to receive them, some people from the Red Cross would inform us that Saddam had refused to release them. This was one of the hardest things that happened to us. On one hand, we had families who were eagerly waiting to welcome their beloveds with open arms and had to go home empty-handed, and on the other hand we had made many preparations to receive them, talking to different organizations and institutions, etc. all in vain. When such things happened we, especially the families of the prisoners, would go back to our life and work with an agitated mind and would feel the psychological and mental pressures for some time afterwards”. (Page 107 and 108) The book “wet Eye” includes 110 pages of documents and pictures about Behjat Afraz’s activities in the Department of the Captured and Lost Soldiers in Iraq’s war against Iran, documents that show the official and emotional aspects of her work, and along with her memories, record this departments long years of activity in the history of Iran and for the future generations of this country.


A Battle in the Sky

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The memoires of Brigadier Pilot Fazl Allah Javidnia is written in the book “A Battle in the Sky”, written by Mohammad Mo’amma. This book has 254 pages and has been published by Ketab Yusef and Emad Institute publication(http://www.emad.ir/). Two chapters of this book were dedicated to Javidnia’s life up to becoming a pilot in Holy Defense Book of the Year Festival (this festival is held every year in 16 categories including poetry, fiction, military research and translations, and each year books published in the previous year is judged. So far, this festival has been held 15 times). After mentioning the ups and downs and hardships of his life, he gets to the days when he flies his aircraft in order to defend his country, remembering that: “In the first months of Iraq’s war against Iran I had a total of 26 days of flight operations and I flew my plane for nearly 90 hours. Most of my flight time was done in October 22, 1980, in which I flew for 6 hours and 20 minutes. November 1980 was almost like October. I had to fly for about 70 hours”. (Page 76) Javidnia has filled the years of Iraq’s war against Iran with memories of his incessant flights and scenes of air battle with Saddam’s army. The excitement of these battles took him to the border of martyrdom and he believes that he was able to manage all the hardships with the help of God. This pilot has dedicated parts of his memoires to the introduction of his co-fighters who have died and left this world, and in the picture album there are scenes of the particular days he has mentioned in his memoires. “A Battle in the Sky” has two important appendixes. One introduces the fighters whose names are mentioned in the book and the other explains the technical words that pilots use when they are flying a plane; some of these words are mentioned in the memoires. The author of this book explains this book as follows:


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“We started research and interviews in September, 2008. In the first few sessions we put all our efforts into persuading Mr. Javidnia into helping us. After that, we needed some documents and evidence to prove some of the things mentioned in the book and we made a lot of efforts to gather them. We succeeded to some extent and were able to find trustable proofs and include them in the book. I tried to do the writing of the book at the same time that I was doing the interviews. Because we asked questions and received the answers it was more


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difficult for me. Because I had to turn his words into simple sentences that would be attractive to the reader. I consulted some of my friends and decided to write the book from the perspective of Mr. Javidnia and those who read the book will notice this fact. I mean I have put his words into simple sentences and have included the exact dates of the incidents that happened in the book.” Mohammad Mo’amma added: “The presence of Brigade Pilot Fazlollah Javidnia in Valfajr 8 and Karbala 5 operations are the peaks of his memoires. During the Karbala 5 Operation he was patrolling Asadabad cervix in Hamedan when he notices some fault in his combat weapon. At the same time he gets word of the entry of 16 warplanes of Saddam’s invading forces into the airspace of Javidnia has filled Kermanshah, and goes to them at the the years of Iraq’s maximum speed and attacks them to war against Iran with memories prevent them from bombing the city of his incessant of Kermanshah. Iraqi pilots who see flights and scenes this movement by Javidnia drop their of air battle with bombs in the deserts near Kermanshah Saddam’s army. and then flee.” Brigade Pilot Fazlollah Javidnia remembers in his book of memoires that: “According to the law, when I found something wrong with my aircraft I had to turn back and return to Isfahan, but I couldn’t do it. I told Husseini: “Yadollah! Iraqi bombers can easily bomb Kermanshah. God knows how many people will die in this bombardment! Don’t you think it will be better if two people die instead of two thousand people? I think we should hit them with our planes and destroy them. What do you think?” (page 160) In introducing his book of memoires he says: “I have been present in all the operations of the Air Force during the Iran- Iraq war and I have explained them all in “A Battle in the Sky”.


A novel that war soldiers believe explores a life operation!

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Lend Me Your Skull, Brother


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“Lend Me Your Skull, Brother” is a novel written by Morteza Karbalayi-Lu. In this novel, Karbalayi-Lu explores the lives of soldiers who participated in Valfajr 8 Operation (Valfajr 8 Operation was conducted under the direction of Iranian Revolutionary Guard in Fav region on April 18, 1986. This operation started at 22:10 on February 9, 1985 in Khosro Abad and Ra’s al-Bishe region with the secret code of “Ya Fatima al-Zahra” and came to an end with the victory of Iranian forces), exploring their thoughts in similar situations, and thus takes the readers deep into a philosophical exploration of human life. Karbalayi-Lu starts the “Lend Me Your Skull, Brother” novel from the last night of Valfajr Operation besides Arvand The novel’s River and takes the reader from the storyline follows present to the past by going through the lives of seven Helal’s memories, where Helal, the soldiers who have main narrator of the story, doesn’t different thoughts remember anything because of the in the same shock he has suffered during the situation. In this operation. book A few days before the operation he faces a question called the “Hard cry” puzzle which is mentioned by Mahdi, one of Martyr Salim’s friends in a letter. From the very beginning of the book, the author follows everything through the fazed eyes of Helal. The reason behind Helal’s presence at the side of Arvand River and seeing black-clad bodies are entwined with the philosophical viewpoint of the author, and in order to release the protagonist from his incomprehensible and fazed state, he continues the story with a philosophical question. The novel’s storyline follows the lives of seven soldiers who have different thoughts in the same situation. In this book, Helal and six other comrades


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called Kazem, Mustafa, Husain, Nurollah, Hadi and Salim have been assigned as the searching divers of the Valfajr Operation and they’ve been frequenting the Arvand River for a year in order to study the position of Iraqi forces from different angles. Mustafa is responsible for taking care of the divers and, a few days after the conclusion of the operation, he asks Helal to start everything with a “hard cry” in order to shake him out of his reverie and help him remember his past memories. The author of the novel is trying to depict the differences between people’s thoughts and outlooks based on the philosophy of their existence. One whole year of doing a routine activity and searching the Arvand River has driven these people towards different thoughts; for example, Helal likes to continue living the same lifestyle without having to do another operation. But Salim believes that gathering data on the enemy without doing an operation is useless and he leaves everything behind and takes refuge in a ruined theatre in the city of Abadan and decides to continue his studies. In the city, he meets a girl called Layali and decides to marry her. Husain dreams of being a martyr and Hadi and Nurollah, who are cousins, seem to treat every moment of their life as a great joke and find all kinds of excuses to laugh; they sometimes have disputes over what they say and often take a walk down the memory lane of their childhood. Kazem is a dreamer who is not explored much and the author uses him to express unseen powers. He has seen some green and blue lights and keeps talking to Helal about the reason for their appearance, but most of his imaginations come true. He goes to the commander and suggests that they dig a channel under the Arvand River and everyone laughs at his suggestion, but Helal


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shows him a hole that was dug under the Arvand River during the rule of the Ilami government. Mustafa likes to see the end of the story and he gets to do so, but as what happens to Helal becomes stronger, what happens to Mustafa fades more and more in the background. The author writes about Mustafa’s separation from the group before the last search


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operation, saying that he goes to see a woman. In this section, the book talks about the changes people go through according to the experiences they gain in life. Ayesha is a character that Karbalayi-Lu creates in the novel in order to show the position of people in different social situations. The reader of the story is informed about what happened during the Valfajr Operation through the meeting between Mustafa and Ayesha who has come back to him after many years. In this novel, Mustafa meets Ayesha twice; the first meeting happens before the Valfajr Operation and the other is at the end of the war. Halfway through the book, the author describes the operation through Ayesha’s eyes. As we can read in page 177 of the book: “Ayesha laughs. The wind flaps her chador against her lips. She says, ‘Tonight is great! This river is beautiful! I swear, whenever I look at this river, I’m reminded of your operation. It’s as if the names of Iranian divers are written on this river and they can’t be washed off. Sometime when I’m alone in the house I get anxious when I look at those waves. They scare me, but I have to look carefully at the waves so that no diver is caught by surprise from the waves of my boat. I keep imagining that they’re getting closer. You have no idea how you’ve frightened the Iraqis. Not just Iraqis, the whole region. Even the Kuwaitis. I’d never seen such fear of you in Iraqis. They were so scared that they even cried. Can you believe that? Just like children…’” From this page onward, the author goes to the other characters of the novel and recites what has happened to them prior the night of the operation, shedding light on the destiny that awaits each one of them; a destiny born of the thoughts of each one of these seven soldiers. The “Lend Me Your Skull, Brother” novel has been published by Asre Dastan Publishing Center(http:// www.chaponashr.ir/).


Three Florist Girls

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Today, in the modern world where everyone is spending his time on cellphones, computers, websites and social networks and where people are busy with their own affairs they might not have enough time to read novels. Therefore maybe a book of Stories can be one of the best ways for attracting readers to read books. Majid Gheysari is one of the young and brainy Iranian writers who has written several story books like “a party with bullets”, “Talo Garden” and “Wandering Calf” which portrays Iraq-Iran war and the consequences over different social classes in Iran. He has shown different angles of these eight years of war in short and long stories in the book of “Three florist girls.” “Parcel”, “Peace”, “Viewpoint”, “Third person from left”, “The Arabic perfume of Ferdous”, “Our quiet father”, “The free fish”, “Storks”, “An Arabic name”, “Write down before being late”, “unripe apple”, “The Rules of a trip”, “Immediate Print”, “The oak Wood”, “War is enough”, and “Once upon a time a war” are the names of the short stories inside “Three florist girls”. The author of this book writes about the imposed war


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of Iraqi Baath Regime against Iran which was the mental concern of the soldiers and at the same time good and bad memories of the people. Most of the time, Majid Gheysari talks about the effects of the war during the years after and speaks of problems of a generation who is forgotten. He focuses on the hardships of the fighters and their families and the social consequences of war. For example, the story of “The free fish” is about a fighter who was a commander in time of war and is redeemed and fired respectfully after war is up; yet he still insists on his beliefs and stands firm on them. The story of “The Arabic Perfume on Ferdous” happens at the time of war and a local fighter is protagonist of the story, he goes to his beloved’s house whose name is Ferdous. Though dangerous to enter an evacuated house, he cannot leave his memories behind easily. The story of “Remaining” is about a fighter who has quiver in his body but his family and even his wife don’t know anything about it till the time he has to go to hospital because of a sickness. Gheysari tries to base the stories of “Three florist girls” on documents; and that’s why he is able to mention social consequences of war very well. He has been able to construct his stories on the beliefs and the values of those who have experienced the war. In a part of the story of “Once upon a time a war” it speaks about a soldier who has come to the war without his parents’ permission: the Train station was where I understood there is a war, outside, there was everything usual, but in the train station there were lots of soldiers and volunteers. Some of them were well-shaved and organized with the smell of perfume, it was clear that they were returning to the battlefield. When you looked at their parents you felt sad, you would ask yourself that where are they going? It was as if their parents knew that they are not going to see their kids safe and sound again.


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You could see this feeling in women’s wet eyes… it was not my first time away from my parents for participating in the war. I have had training classes for 45 days, I had experienced the tear gas and I had missed my mom’s foods. At that time, we didn’t sleep at all and some planed came across us and we heard some explosions. Everyone was sleeping calmly and no one, except for me, did care about the death which was so near to us. It was as if there was war somewhere else and we heard explosions one after the other and suddenly everywhere became silent. We heard a motorcycle which was approaching us. For a moment we felt Death Angel next to us and this feeling made us feel powerful and started running. After some steps I felt as if there was something spanned to my foot, it was painful but I didn’t care and continued running after the others with bare feet. The book “Three florist girls” is published by Sureh Mehr (http://www.iricap.com/).


Heart beliefs manifested as drama in “Love Contribution�


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“Love Contribution” is a dramatic story which has been inspired by the religious pattern and thoughts. It is started by a narration form Saboureh’s life, a nurse during the Iraqi imposed war on Iran. Maryam Bassiri, follows her story in one of the sanitariums of the veterans. At the end of the War, Saboureh has come here and worked as the nurse of the veterans. The story of “Love Contribution” begins from a sanitarium in Mashhad and engages the reader with life of a girl who has devoted all her life to the serving of veterans. The destiny of this nurse will be based on her vow, in which she wanted to marry a veteran and serve him. In this book, Maryam Bassiri talks about a veteran called Reza, who has missed his feet and one of his hands in the front. His veterinary caused some disputes between his parents. His father left them and ten years after the War, his mother died and he was sent to the sanitarium. The author makes the reader follow the story by describing the sufferings of Reza and the vow in the heart of Saboureh: “Reza has too much pain, but does not let the girl to see it. Saboureh wants him not to be embarrassed there at that time and to tell what he wants. But it is difficult to talk to a man who does not like to talk”. Saboureh asks Imam Reza (A.S) (the eighth Imam of the Shias) to help her pay her vow. The most important part of the dialogues and speeches of the personages of the story are related to the Shrine of Imam Reza (A.S). The place where this Imam hears the people’s words and helps them. Saboureh is forty years old and lives with her old mother. His brother insists that she should marry to an estate agent. He wants to sell his family’s house and buy a house for himself. The author writes in this way


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what Saboureh wants to say: “Sayyed Reza, look… A feminine shame prevents her to talk again. She keeps quiet and looks down… I made vow to marry with a veteran but I do not know why it did not happened in these many years… I might not have deserved it. Or I might have been too strict”. The man has no reaction. “Do you like to marry me?”


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But Reza keeps quiet and the story goes to the presence of the veterans of Tehran and Mashhad’s sanitariums in the Shrine of Imam Reza (A.S), after the ceremonies of the Sacred Defense Week in the sanitarium, the place where all words are replaced by the tears. Reza asks the eighth Imam to helps him be martyred which was his vow and Saboureh asks for her vow; and Reza gets earlier to what he wants. After the martyrdom of Reza, Saboureh doubts a lot. She still loves Reza by her heart but the author brings another personage to continue the story. He is a sick man who has three children. In the stories related to Rassoul, the thing that attracts the reader is her The story of “Love belief in her heart for paying her vow Contribution” and the thing that she has asked from begins from a Imam Reza during the years. sanitarium in The story goes ahead with the Mashhad and engages the reader doubts of the girl and despite the vow she has made, Saboureh accepts to with life of a girl marry Rassoul. Following the things who has devoted that happen, the relation of Saboureh all her life to the serving of veterans. is cut with the veterans’ world and their sanitarium and the world she has made for herself; what remains is just the nostalgia. But the life of Rassoul and his illness becomes the beginning of another story in the book. Exactly at the time when Saboureh was disappointed to pay her vow and she has gone with Rassoul to the tomb of Reza, she finds out a fact which changes her direction for living with Rassoul. The story of “Love Contribution” has been published(http://www.chaponashr.ir/) by Asre Dastan Publications.


Wandering In Strange Land

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Ahmad Dehghan is one of the well-known authors on the Iran-Iraq war. He has experienced the battle fronts when he was a young man and he has written many books on this topic which we can mention “Journey to Heading 270 Degrees”. This book has been translated and published in English. But among all, the book “Wandering in Strange Land” which has been published by Neyestan book has been so welcomed by the Iranian readers and the critics because it had a distinct look at Iraq-Iran war. This story is about the entrance of a group of Iranian soldiers to an area in the western part of Iran for doing an operation, a group of soldiers whom we don’t know what their goal was for participating in the war till the end of story. Are they there for having fun or they want to save their country? Because each of them are involved in their past and somewhere in the story their past is shown to the reader. We are not facing one dimension and typical character. The characters aren’t completely black or white and angel like. All of them are ordinary people with various needs which are understandable for the readers. Bahram is a funny, joking and happy character who doesn’t let anyone around him to be sad. Abdollah is one of the other main characters of this story is someone who has had a love failure and is not that much religious. It seems that he has participated voluntary to defend his country. Jamal is a hard


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working and lovely commander who moves in front of his soldiers and he fights. And Ibrahim is an explorer whose brother was killed in the battlefield and he has come to the war after him. There are other characters that just fill different parts of the puzzle of the story. The story starts from an abandoned station which is destructed and ruined by the quivers. A division is waiting for the train to leave. Awaiting for the train to come shows that a trip is going to start and this trip is the basis for the story of “Wandering in the Strange Land”. Then the writer focuses on a group of people in this This story is about division and precedes the characters the entrance of a group of Iranian of the story. They are supposed to soldiers to an area go to Kordistan in order to defend in the western ordinary people and confront the part of Iran for guards of the President of Iraq and doing an operation. the whole story happens in this trip The characters and in that destination. aren’t completely The theme of the story happens black or white and in chilly days of winter and in the angel like. All of mountainous land of the West of them are ordinary Iran and it shows the difficulty of people with various the war in the cold weather. Most needs which are of the equipments and the food are understandable for led by horses and a guide named the readers. “Allah Morad”. A great part of the story is attributed to these animals. The importance of the animals is in a way that Ahmad Dehghan tells the story of the death of these animals in the bombings by detail. In a part of this story it talks about the difficulty of fighting in the winter. The fighters entered the straight; they had many difficulties to get there. It was obvious that they weren’t defeated in that area yet. it was clear by the sounds that for breaking the way they had a long


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way to go. They asked everyone to sit on the snow with the hope of breaking the way. There were high mountains in the two sides. They were aware of the surrounding that suddenly they heard the sound of tanks from the backside. They reached. There were a row of seven or eight tanks.


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So they use these kinds of things in war and we didn’t know that! One of the members of the division told that in a way that the commander who was talking to the operators hears his voice. The commander stopped for a moment and said: “we wanted to have a surprise attack. That’s why we didn’t bring the tanks to the front.” Abdollah said: “wow, here we realize the meaning of surprise attack.” It was snowing hardly. Sometimes the bright made the straight light and everyone could see the rest who were wet and snow was on them. Ibrahim who had came to the back of the division said while his voice was quavering: “I hope the bombing is over. When they start shooting they make everywhere like a hell. I hope the missiles are finished and they can’t continue bombing” Bahram who was trying to make everyone laugh but he was not successful, laughed himself and said: “you praying is like the praying of that person who had a donkey and a cow. He once prayed to God: O God my donkey is so old but I can’t leave it, please do something so that I can give the entire herb to my cow and its milk will be more. In the morning he went and saw that his cow is dead and he said: after these many years don’t you put a difference between a cow and a donkey?” He waited for a moment to see if anyone laughs or not, and then continued: “now in such a situation you are making such praying that our own missiles will be ended and they will kill all of us.” Some of the guys around him made a smile. The novel “Wandering in a strange land” has been published by Neyestan Book(http://www.neyestanbook. com/) in Iran.


Iran-Iraq War in Mirror of World Media

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Media, and particularly the press, is one of the most important and also persistent documents in the process of analyzing a historical event. Now, the articles and the columns of domestic and foreign news remained from the time of Iraq eight-year war against Iran are needed as written and undeniable references. So, the Research Institute of Science and Education of the Sacred Defense (http://www.dsrc.ir/), one of Army Research Institutions in the field of Iran-Iraq war, has collected and published a 16-volume set of documents from the foreign press named as “Iran-Iraq War in Mirror of World Media”. These works have been collected and adjusted based on the papers’ documents and foreign press existing in the National Center for Sacred Defense Documents (related to Research Institute of Science and Education of the Sacred Defense.) The background of this search and collection of these papers dates back to the early


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days of the war and the formation of War Advertising Office by the Army of Guardians of the Islamic Revolution (The public military of Iran established after the victory of the Islamic Revolution and fall of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi). Some of the researchers and members of the Army of Guardians discovered a few parts of the domestic and foreign papers related to the Iran-Iraq War and archived them. And now, the result of 8 years of hard work is displayed in a set of books called “Iran-Iraq War in Mirror of World Media”. Most of these news, reports, newspaper articles and interviews have been selected from the outstanding Arabic, European and American newspapers like “New York Times”, “The Guardian”, “USA TODAY”, “Daily Telegraph”, “Le Monde”, “Figaro” “Los Angeles


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Times”, “Al-Watan”, “Ad-Dustour” and “Newsweek”. The book series of “Iran-Iraq War in Mirror of World Media” include preliminary preparation before war, the first steps of the invasion of Iran, resistance of Khorramshahr (One of the most strategic border cities in southern Iran economically and strategically important), encountering the difficulties and changing the military strategy of Iraq, Iranian efforts for re-shaping the defense organization of the country by joining the Army of Guardians of the Islamic Revolution to the Military forces, liberation of Khorramshahr and chasing the aggressor, expanding the Iran war organization and the fields of war in the Persian gulf, the expansion of America’s relations with Iraq, restarting the victories of Iran in the war and the global impact of the modern war. Currently published series covers first four years of war. Sequel volumes which are being compiled will go up to the end of War and the truce of Resolution 598. The first article of this series is about the report published in “Washington Post” on 3/2/1979, just a week before the victory of Islamic Revolution. This report points to the resignation of Iraq from the Soviet Union and rejoining to the West; the reporter wrote on the distancing of the relation between Iraq and America: “Even though it seems that the Iraqi propaganda is almost against America, but talking to the government and military officials of the ruling Socialist Party of Baath, no hostility is felt, particularly towards America. Concerns about imperialistic plans of the United States or the Soviet Union are equally the same in this Oil rich region. The Iraqis whisper that they are worried about the Soviet going to surround the Middle East to sit the US at negotiation table for their dominated lands. “The Times” also announced on 18/9/1980 the unilateral termination of the 1975 Algiers Agreement


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(This treaty indicated water borders of Iraq and Iran over the Shatt al-Arab) by Saddam Hussein and writes: Iraq President Saddam Hussein has unilaterally terminated the 1975 Algiers Agreement and increased the risk of development of a full-scale war between the two oilrich countries. Saddam thinks now that he could seize freely and by force, the lands he wants. The news of the Iran-Iraq War is followed by the foreign media every moment and they transmit the ups and downs of the eight-year war to the whole world. They report the victories and defeats of both sides during the war. The interesting point is that any domestic action in the two countries done due to the erosive War, like the execution of the traitors, statements and speeches of politicians about current situation of war are never left ignored by intricate eyes of the reporters. Henry Kam writes in “New York Times” on 11/3/1984: “Iraq has obviously failed to achieve its economic goals in the fourth year of war with Iran. Baghdad is the capital of extreme dualities and contradictions. The city of shops with empty shelves, the city of expensive imported cars and newly built luxury buildings, and the city of splendid state buildings and international hotels”. “Herald Tribune” also states in a report on 12/3/1984, that the Iraqi Baath Regime has used Chemical Weapons against Iran: “Dr. Herbert Mendel said on Saturday that the laboratory tests of two of ten Iranians who are being treated in Vienna, show some signs of mustard gas and mycotoxin which is a toxic material, derived from a fungus and it is commonly used for yellow gas.” The full publishing of “Iran-Iraq War in Mirror of World Media” will offer a bright view from the beginning to the end of the Iran-Iraq War from the foreign media’s perspective; it will be certainly effective for the Iranian and foreign researchers to use it.


Iran-Iraq War in the United Nations Documents The United Nations is considered as the major active center in the maintenance of international peace and the human rights. Therefore, the members of this organization have arranged various meeting to address the subjects of the multilateral disarmament. They have considered different topics in these commissions such as: analyzing the Test Ban Treaty of Weapons of Mass Destruction, Treaty Banning Chemical Weapons, Disarmament of Nuclear and conventional Weapons, Establishment Nuclear-weapon-free zones, Reducing the Military Budget, and Strengthening of International Security. UN peacekeepers are deployed to war zones after

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adopting the resolutions related to the current wars, to implement the peace agreements and to prevent the involved parties to restart the conflict or to investigate the war crimes. Most of these visits are written in the reports and they are registered in the archives of the United Nations after pursuing and achieving the desired results. The Iran-Iraq war is not exempt from this rule and as regards the duration of the Iran-Iraq war is as long as the duration of the First and the Second World War, naturally, a large volume of the UN documents in the 80s belong to it. Holy Defense Research and Documentation Center, which is one of the considerable Military and Historical Research Centers in Iran, has collected the statements, resolutions and the opinions of the Secretary General of the UN and the related agencies about the ups and downs of the Iran-Iraq War, that have been published from 1980 to 1989; they have published them as a tenvolume set of books called “Iran-Iraq War in the United Nations Documents”. Reflecting the events of the Iraqi Imposed War against Iran in the international documents and especially the United Nations is a reasonable and clear path for Iran to enter the topics of defending their rights in this imposed war. The book collection of “Iran-Iraq War in the United Nations Documents” includes the subjects like the claims of Ceasefire violations and the letters of the representative of Iran in the UN to accelerate the implementation of the Resolution 598. There are also various statistics about the volume of the UN documents such as the statements, reports, correspondence of Iran, Iraq and other countries with the United Nations from the beginning of the War until three years after the acceptance of the Resolution 598, that estimating the damages of Iraqi Imposed War against Iran by the appointed Secretary General of the UN, is counted as


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one of the most important documents after the War. Each volume of the series of the books “Iran-Iraq War in the United Nations Documents” contains the picture of the documents in English and the translation and the abstract in Persian. On the tenth October of 1987, Dr. Ali Akbar Velayati, Iran’s Foreign Minister during the imposed War, wrote a letter and addressed the UN Secretary General: “Fortytwo days have passed from the bombing of Sardasht, the town which had 12 thousand population, by Iraq. It was the first time that a town was completely contaminated by the chemical weapons. The chemical attack was so vast that when the UN research team was visiting there after 9 days, the town was still heavily contaminated. Some of the injured are still undergoing medical treatment in European hospitals. Some of the victims, who had seen the death of their family members, had been influenced by the Chemical Weapons. Chemical attack was immediately reported to you and we immediately asked for a team of experts to study the issue and prepare a technical report. However, for the reasons that are still unclear for us, this request has not been considered until now and just an unofficial report was prepared by the United Nations team in Tehran. Although this report has not been published by the Secretary General and it was not accessible for the Security Council, but it contains enough information and basic for various organizations of the UN. It obvious


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that this quiet confirms the Iraqi actions and it is against your aggressive position that is expected. The tragedy of Sardasht should be recorded in the encyclopedias and the history books with Hiroshima and Nagasaki, as the first city in the world which was the victim of a chemical bombing. The Security Council has avoided even the least possible effort. The clear irresponsibility of the Security Council approves that there is a dichotomy in the positions of some permanent members. How ironic is that the United States who has condemned the Iraqi chemical attacks before, prevent debating the matter in the UN and pursuing it by the Security Council now. The other permanent members like France and especially Kingdom of Great Britain, have done the same actions by ignoring this important issue….” Unfortunately, many similar reports are widely seen among the reports of the UN. From one side, the US pressure on the United Nations and military and financial supports from Iraq, on the other side, comprehensive sanctions against Iran, have revealed the inattentions of the United Nations. Permanent members of the Security Council in addition to act as the legal status of the Security Council, have helped Saddam Hussein during the war as the superpowers, by the sanctions, blocking the channels of supplying the arms and even the basic goods, influencing on the market, prices, production and export of Iranian oil and also managing their allies to handle with Iran in a way they wanted and facilitating the relations with Iraq. But finally, on the eighth December of 1991, the aggressiveness of Iraq in the War with Iran and the legitimacy of Iran in this unequal war were proved by the United Nations. Studying the 10 volumes collection of “Iran-Iraq War in the United Nations Documents” will be effective in analyzing and clarification of the facts and possible lies about this long lasting war of the history of the world.


The sound of Halabja’s silence resonates all over the world

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In the morning of March 16, 1988 it probably never occurred to Kurds living in Halabja that they would have a share in the yellow gases that Saddam’s forces had used in a chemical attack on Sardasht just eight month ago (in July 1987) (Sardasht is one of Iran’s Western Kurdish border towns; this town was attacked by chemical weapons by Iraq; this city was hit by seven chemical bombs four of which hit downtown and three others landed in a valley near the villages of Sardasht. 109 residents of the town died instantly. That same year, Iranian Foreign Ministry sent a letter to the UN, announcing that four thousand and 600 people were killed, injured and survived the bombing). It was on that day when Iraq attacked Halabja (one of the cities of Iraq’s Kurdistan) and used its heaviest chemical weapons in an operation called Anfal as a result of which at least 5,000 Muslim Kurds were killed and 7,000 others were injured. Although we have gotten used to reading the story of the events that occurred in those years in novels and memoires, perhaps this time the pictorial narration offered by Ahmad Nateghi and Saeed Sadeghi, two photographers who were present on the streets of the city at the time of the chemical bombardment of Halabja, is the best way to get a deeper understanding of the tragedy that took place


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in Halabja. Because their picture were taken at the time the bombardment victims were dying, they are truly shocking and the picture that has greatly affected public opinion all over the world is a picture of Omar Khavar (a Kurdish man holding a child in his arms) taken by Ahmad Neteghi; its statues can be found in several locations in Halabja. Ahmad Nateghi has published 150 pictures of the chemical bombardment of Halabja taken in two different time zones –one at the time the incident occurred in 1366, and the other 25 years after the tragedy on the streets of the town- in a book called “The Sound of Silence”. His book which is published in three volumes is in “PersianEnglish”, “Kurdish-English”, and “English-Arabic”, and it is published by Sara Simorgh Sahar Publications. The preface of “The Sound of Silence” offers a brief history of the chemical bombing of Saddam’s army against Iran and the number of its victims, and then goes on to give a detailed picture of the bombing of Halabja and the ensuing tragedy. In 6 pages of “The Sound of Silence”, Ahmad Nateghi describes the events of the day of the bombing and its aftermath, including transferring the martyrs and treating the survivors of the incident. What distinguishes Ahmad Nateghi’s photos from the other ones taken from Halabja is that he has recorded the first moments right after the bombing. Ahmad Nateghi who was present in the battleground of the Iran- Iraq war as a photographer for years and has taken lots of images believes that the Ministry of Kurdistan Martyrs of Iraq put in the order for “The Sound of Silence”; he believes that publishing pictures of Halabja, some of which were even included in Saddam’s file, has left a great impact on the public opinion of the world, and was able to put a stop on chemical wars. Nateghi says that making a documentary film at the invitation of ‘Khak’ Channel (Sulaimaniyah’s local


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channel), 4 years ago, in which alleys that were witness to the chemical bombardment of Halabja were shown provided a reason for publishing “The Sound of Silence”. He said that watching the film even impressed “Hero Ibrahim Ahmed”, wife of Iraqi president Jalal Talebani. Afterwards, she invited this war photographer over and held a meeting with him. In this meeting, Ahmad Nateghi says: “In our meeting I made a suggestion regarding publishing “The Sound of Silence”, and Hero Ibrahim Ahmed welcomed my suggestion and she decided to become the book’s sponsor. In that meeting I also made another suggestion regarding buying the bombarded streets of Halabja and turning them into a museum for soldiers and Jalal Talebani’s wife accepted this plan and recorded it in my name. Until now several streets have been purchased and any kind of construction is forbidden on them.” According to Ahmad Nateghi, “During the trip of a group of American peace activists to Iran, we decided to hold negotiations and publish this book in the US as well.” Tehran’s Peace Museum, the Society of Support for Chemical Weapons Victims, and Tehran Municipality has also supported the publication of this book (http:// www.tehranpeacemuseum. org).


Grand Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the Leader of Islamic Revolution:

This eight-year war (Iraq-Iran war) is indeed an eternal treasure.

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war litrutuar 1  

Journal of Resistance Literature Reviews and Scholarly Articles

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