- Hi, my name is Iman Shirali, I’m 27 year old. I was born on 1361 (1982). I’m a child of an executed person, a political prisoner who was executed in public on 1361 (1982) in Amol (a city in northern Iran) along with 22 others. Their only crime was that they were against the regime of Iran. When we talk about 60’s (80’s), many remembers Khomeini and the massacre of those against the regime at the time. There might be a small number of people who wants to travel back to those times, what a good era it was; they might think.
Majority of my family members such as my dad, mom, aunt, my grand parents on my mom side and many other were arrested and taken to prison because they did not want the regime of Iran.
I hope science of young kid’s psychology gets so advanced that they can research and analyze the feelings and thinking of a few months old baby, after their house is being attacked and savagery taking the family members away.
Anyway, my sister and I after our parents were arrested; start living with our grandparents. At the time, women at the same cell as my mother who did not have anyone to take care of their children would take the kids to prison with them. Many even gave birth to their children while in prison. Think about it, in Iran we have a generation when you ask them about their place and year of birth they would tell you 1360, 1361 (1981 or 1982) Evin prison.
Later my grandfather told me about the tortures him and my dad tolerated in Jail. They would whip them in front of each other and ask them to confess. He told me how they would hit, laugh and curse at them. And finally they executed my dad and others without allowing them to defense themselves, without having a lawyer and after an unfair few minutes of trail. Gilani was the judge and Assadollah Lajevardi was the prosecutor of an unfair trail where my dad along with 22 others where charged to “Moharebe” (fight against the god). Later I heard that if any of the accusers would to open his mouth, he would get shut-down by the chanting of Allaho-Akbar (god is great) Khomeini Rahbar (Khomeini is our leader), dead to traitor, dead to Moharebe by the Hizbollahiz’s presented at the trial. My dad’s verdict was announced in the presence of his family. On Bahman 5th of 1361 (January of 1982) along with 22 of his friends all which were against the regime, were executed in public, I was only 9 months old at the time. Their bodies were buried at the same place, which is quit similar to Khavaran in Tehran, a place like a jungle/forest. At the time, families of executed people were not allowed to have a ceremony. My grandmother told me stories about how at the beginning when she would go to visit my dad’s grave; Hizbollahiz’s and plain cloths forces attacked and whip her by the twig from the same forest where my dad was buried.
Despite all that, my grandmother would go, she would always go; once or few times a month. She would travel from Tehran to Amol and would bring us with her. And finally she passed away on 1380 and as per her request she was buried at the same graveyard as my dad.
For the past 27 years, father name for me is just an execution. It’s been 27 years since my family and I have lost someone; not in a car accident or to cancer. We have lost my father by the bullet of this regime in few seconds and just because he was appose the regime. In Farsi language fatherless is considered as a curse. For the past 27 years I have lived with this word. For the past 27 years I’ve been witnessing pain in my mother’s eyes, pain of her dead husband.
Now I know what to say in response to a question from my childhood; “Iman what do you want to become when you grow up”. I say in the first place an activist against execution, against torture, a liberal, an activist against rape. Someone just like all the other children of executed a political prisoner who wants to bring the guilty and responsible people for all these execution and torture to the trail. The movement which has begin in Iran today is a movement by my generation and generations after me, who hates the harshness of this regime during the past 30 years, a generation who is carrying a huge pain on his shoulders, who comes to the street to shout-out his pain. I promise, until he puts down this pain nothing would come in his way; not torture, rape, suppression, teargas or pepper spray. To tell you the truth, my words today are to have a court for those responsible before announcing an official court session. We even want Mr. Kahmeni to have a lawyer and be able to defense himself. However, we want to put him and all the other regime authorities on trail for all the crimes they have committed during the past 30 years. Today’s movement is a movement against execution, torture, stoning, against getting confessions and making Tavabs (spy within the political prisoners) against prison, and political prisoners.
When they executed my dad; there wasn’t Facebook, Twitter, Youtube or different dish networks. Not very many people heard the voice of my father’s generation. I did this little thing because I want my generation and generations after me, whom are very knowledgeable to have more courage to speak up about executions, rapes and tortures. I’m especially talking to those with the same situation as me. Don’t let our loved ones whom sacrificed their lives remain with no identity. The time of strangulation when we were forced to hide the reason of our parent’s death at enrolling for school has passed. We are the same young people whom they tried day and night to make us Imam-Zaman (a religious term referring to sentry of Islam) sentries. We are the same kids they tried to keep in silence by suppression, preventing us from having a job and making us drug addicts. But today we turned into leaders of a huge movement of anti-torture and anti-execution and we will continue with our movement until victory. I wish you all best of luck.