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August 2014 1393 ‫مرداد‬

POOIA - Representing the True Image of Iranian American’s Today

Sarah Moosazadeh According to the U.S. Census Bureau an estimated five hundred thousand to one million Iranian-American’s are living in the United States today. Yet, what’s so remarkable about this group of individuals is not their demographics in and of itself but the level of success they have achieved in such a short span of time. From arts and entertainment to business and academic research, Iranian-Americans have excelled within every segment of American culture. However, their greatest asset does not lie within the board room but inside the community instead. This segment thrives on success and in an effort to attain it, have seamlessly paved the way for the next generation. One clear example of this is POOIA, the Professional Organization of IranianAmericans. Headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia POOIA aims to bring Iranian American professionals together based on a notion of networking, fellowship, and the desire to give back to the community. As a means to counter balance the negative stereotypes the media portrays about Iranians, the organizations stands as a conduit through which Iranian-Americans may showcase their success. Since its establishment, the organization has developed three main objectives to meet its goals. The first is in regards to networking and creating a sense of synergy among professionals who are eager to give back to the community. The second concerns Generation Y and assisting them with their professional growth and the third involves protecting and portraying Iranian-Americans true image. Professionals and members alike

who are eager to share their experiences may finally do so on an entirely new platform regardless of their political or cultural affiliation. Whether this is through mentorship opportunities or extended education programs, the goal is to provide a positive

impact within society. POOIA is a prime illustration of this very endeavor and in an effort to reach a larger demographic has recently recruited new volunteers to help spread the word. A mass email was distributed calling for candidates who were willing to offer

Dr. Saeid Fatemi

Professor, Writer, Poet, Editor, Translator, Orator, Journalist and Activist Dr. Saeid Fatemi was born in Nain, Yazd to Ms. Saltanat Fatemi, a brave activist, and Mr. Mirza Mohammad Khan Fatemi. He lost his father when he was nine months old. He is the nephew of Dr. Hossein Fatemi and Professor Nassrollah Seif Pour Fatemi. He is married to Dr. Minoo Varzegar, Professor of Tehran University, Columbia University and Rutgers University and together they have two daughters, Dr. Delaram Fatemi, Pathologist, and Dr. Arezou Fatemi, Internist, and they have three grandchildren: Shayan Mortazavi ( a high school student), Donna and Tara Bagheri (first grade students). He did his elementary and high school education in Isfahan. He received two BAs in Persian Literature and Law simultaneously from the University of Tehran. He started teaching at Darolfonoon while he was studying towards his Ph.D. in Persian Literature. He also received a scholarship and went to Paris to study towards a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature. He received his Ph.D. in Persian Literature from the University of Tehran and then a doctorat en vue d’etat from Sorbonne with mension honorable. Dr. Saeid Fatemi is a professor, writer, poet, editor, translator, researcher, orator, journalist and an activist. Dr. Fatemi was the Editor-inchief of the popular Bakhtar Emruz Newspaper.

He has published 9 books on Humanities and two books on Greek and Roman Mythology, 1500 socio-political articles and 1200 literary articles to promote our Persian literature and culture. He has also had 50 radio and TV talks and has presented more than 400 papers in national and international conferences. He has been granted numerous national and international awards for his academic and sociopolitical endeavors. He was full professor at the University of Tehran and a Visiting Professor at Princeton University, Kent University and the University of Illinois. When he was 17, he was fascinated by Dr. Mohammad Mossadegh’s ideas of democracy and he became his follower and he has been following his principles ever since then. After the 1953 coup, which thwarted democracy in Iran, his uncle, Dr. Hossein Fatemi, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, was executed by the ExShah and Dr. Saeid Fatemi, who had served as Dr. Mossadegh’s Special Secretary in the Hague

their expertise within the realm of membership, public relations, education, event planning and community service. Candidates were asked to identify two roles they felt passionate about and indicate how they could contribute. The response was tremendous and a follow-up email was delivered days later listing the new volunteers as well as their titles. Since then, the organization has had an outstanding kick start as volunteers’ work diligently to revamp POOIA’s website and attract new members. Yet, one may still beg to ask the question, why POOIA? Why now? The answer is simple. In no other time has it been so important for Iranian-Americans to reveal their true image than now. Iranian-Americans continue to play an integral role in our society and with each successful endeavor they pursue, the community benefits. However, very seldom does this group have the chance to join other like-minded individuals to help foster change and exchange ideas. Until now that is. POOIA stands as a tool in which members from various communities may come together to further their ambitions. Whether this includes attending a local networking event, working behind the scenes as a volunteer, or donating one’s time to mentor an up and coming young adult professional, the possibilities are endless and so too are the rewards. Please check out our website and like us on Facebook! Source: http://www.paaia.org/CMS/ demographics--statistics.aspx Tribunal, was imprisoned for his democratic ideas and his efforts to restore freedom and his struggles against the dictatorial regime of the time. He was held a political prisoner where he was ruthlessly tortured physically and mentally. Dr. Fatemi’s neck was broken but it could not be bent; his eyes were damaged but his vision could not be altered; his throat was cut but his voice could not be silenced and his hand was burnt but his pen could not be stopped. He was sent from one horrific life threatening prison to another, but he stood by his ideas firm and fast and no prison could change his beliefs. He has been writing, speaking, going to prison and striving for peace and liberty following Dr. Mossadegh’s liberalism from the time he was 17. There has not been a single moment in his life when it has even occurred to him to choose his own peace of mind over the peace of his nation. He is man of honor and integrity and for him nothing is above humanity, unity and solidarity. He pays no attention to mundane affairs and he is humane aspects are very solid and strong. All his life he has put himself at the stake for his nation and its prosperity. We salute him for all his humanistic endeavors. May God bless this phenomenal multidimensional human being who has devoted his life to fruitful to bringing pride for our land. On August 2, 2014, Dr. Minoo Varzegar is honoring this hero in a formal ceremony at the Double Tree by Hilton Hotel. In this celebration, Dean Hamid Akbari, Dr. Mohammad Rafi, Mr. Parviz Nezami, Dr.Minoo Vaziri Gorji, Dr. Tahereh Bagheri, Dr. Arezou Fatemi, Dr. Delaram Fatemi and Dr. Minoo Varzegar will talk about the life and legacy of Dr. Saeed Fatemi. Hundred people are invited to this memorable event to celebrate Dr. Fatemi‘s deeds and achievements in his fruitful life.

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The morning after the election, a few senior members of the Bush administration advocated giving Hamas a chance to engage Israel on practical issues, including travel permits, the power grid, water, and commerce. If Hamas failed to do so within a couple of months, these officials argued, the United States and Israel would pull the rug from under Hamas. That argument, which according to media reports at the time, was favored by President Bush, lasted for one day. The counter argument favoring an immediate isolation of Hamas, which was strongly advocated by neoconservatives in the United States and in Israel, carried the day. The Gaza wars in 2008-9, 2012, and now are arguably a direct result of the refusal of Israel and the United States to accept the 2006 election results and engage Hamas. Had engagement occurred, the living standards of Gazans would have improved markedly; there would have been no need for a “tunnel economy” or a “tunnel military.” Unfortunately, Israeli politicians today seem to be viewing Hamas and the continued occupation and encirclement through the same narrow prism of 2006.

The Way Forward In a recent article on this blog I argued the two-state solution was dead and called for new thinking. The same applies to the current conflict. After 47 years of occupation, nine years of blockading Gaza, two intifadas, and three wars, Israel, the Palestinians, and the United States must accept the fact that war, terrorism, and occupation cannot solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. With the death of the two-state option, the peaceful coexistence of Israelis and Palestinians between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River can only be achieved through a new paradigm grounded in justice, human dignity, equality, and tolerance. Including Hamas in talks for an enduring end to the conflict could be done through a joint Palestinian delegation comprised of the PA, Hamas, and other factions. For this approach to succeed, however, it must include an end to the blockade of Gaza. Once the two peoples living together embark on this path, they will reject the logic of occupation and terrorism and focus on building a more hopeful future. For its part, the United States should jettison all futile attempts to push for a so-called peace process. Rather, we should begin serious efforts to help the two peoples operationalize the new paradigm. About the author: Emile Nakhleh is an expert on Middle Eastern society and politics and on political Islam. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a Research Professor at the University of New Mexico. He previously served in the Central Intelligence Agency from 1993-2006, first as scholar in residence and chief of the Regional Analysis Unit in the Office of Near Eastern and South Asian Analysis and subsequently as director of the Political Islam Strategic Analysis Program. Until 1993 Nakhleh taught at Mount St. Mary's University, where he was the John L. Morrison Professor of International Studies. Nakhleh's publications include, among others, A Necessary Engagement: Reinventing America's Relations with the Muslim World (2009), Bahrain: Political Development in a Modernizing Society (1976 and 2011), and The Gulf Cooperation Council: Policies, Problems, and Prospects (1986). Nakhleh holds a PhD from American University, an MA from Georgetown University, and a BA from Saint John's University, Minnesota.

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