Are you Persian? Do you think it is a pity we changed the name of our country and now our host counties look down at us as a terrorists but they praise Persians for their kind act described in their holy books? Or are you Iranian who do not think you are Persian and you are fed up with Persians attitudes. See what two Iranian think.
Do you think that as a minority in your country you were oppressed? No matter which ethnic background you are, if you consider yourselves Iranian, you might want to read the following articles. They were written by two Iranians; one Turkish and one Persian speaking. They each have their own ideas and logic. You too can send us your opinion. We would like to hear from you. We will post your comments. We do not allow profanity. Any article containing hatred or Profanity will be ignored.
The link which stirred up the discussion follows.
A Persian Answer to the above article follows
The writer wrote 'It is saddening for me to see so many Iranians, especially Persians, still think that what they think is right is right for others too'.
I was wondering if the writer is any exception in that he thinks what he thinks is right and what other Iranians think is wrong! I have had close friends, both from our Turkish and Kurdish population and we talk regularly. Although some might think like this writer, there are so many others who think like me. We are all from Iran and we do not wish to be separated. Obviously there are some problems with the ruling laws. If we had a secular, democratic government most of those problems would go away. Let's see some historical facts.
1- Iran has been Iran plus or minus a few territories for the past 2500 years. And even 2500 years ago there were Sistan, Azabaijan and Kordestan and so on.
2- Even with all the foreign interference, the people in these regions choose to stay where they are and they were all called Persians even as late as 1935.
3- Whether or not if we were Aryan, we all are the same now. You cannot differentiate a Turkish, Kurdish or Persian just by looking at their faces. Because we have been mixed so much we all look like one race. Whether we accept it or not.
4- There is a bond which weaves Iranians together so much that even though we have the same language as people from Turkey and I speak the same language as people from Afghanistan , we still enjoy our fellow Iranian better.
I was friends with two Kurdish families when I lived up north; the first was a Kurdish from Iraq and the second one from Kurdistan of Iran. Although they both spoke Persian, I enjoyed the Iranian Kurds better since they were fellow Iranians. The Iraqi Kurd also talked about a united Kurdistan but my Iranian Kurd told me, that was nonsense since he could not understand the Kurdish spoken in Iraq or Syria . The same is true with Iranian Turkish Language and a Turkish from Turkey or Republic of Azerbaijan
5- Just because one has an accent when one talks Persian is not the reason that he/she is oppressed. I have a different accent and I am Persian. Feeling different when he/she was a kid makes him/her an oppressed person.
6- The writer mentioned that Reza Shah pushed all the minority people to assimilate to Persian. That is where he is wrong. Teaching one's national history is not assimilation! Unless his Turkish teacher was putting that in his little head that he was not Iranian. When Korosh the Great was in power, Azerbaijan was part of his empire and it was called the Persian Empire . When Alexander conquered Iran , Azerbaijan did not obey and stayed independent, but later became part of Sasanian's empire. Why did the writer thinks he was not part of this history? Just because one does not speak Persian does not make him/her not Iranian and therefore have a different history than our home land. Even if, as some suggest, his ancestors came with the group of Turkish tribes, still they choose Iran to be their land and therefore they own this land's history too.
7- He criticized Reza Shah Pahlavi for assimilation of Iranian into one nation. I ask him 'What is the nation if it is not one to you? Has he looked at the history to see the most proponent of modernization and strong centralize government were from Azerbaijan ? Has he read the writing of Kasravi or Taghizadeh?'
When Reza Shah started his reign only a small percentage of the population could read or write. But as the writer mentioned, there are almost 10 different language and even more half languages as Kasravi call it in Iran . I ask him which language do you choose to teach if you have a limited resources?
In the United States with the vast resources and being a superpower, how many languages your kids will learn at school? Anything but English? Obviously the government chooses the most popular language. If the pride is too high like in India then they choose English so no one gets offended and they all become oppressed as the writer called it.
8- Now that he went to school and learned how to read and write and learned the history of his country, what is preventing him from reading and writing in his own language? Why is teaching the national language in school by the government oppressing?
9- We immigrated to the United States and our children learn English in school. Do they feel oppressed? I write in English, the writer writes in English, are we oppressed or do we want to reach a wider audience? Why does he think Roomi wrote his popular books in Persian while he was living in a Turkish speaking country? Because the Persian language gave him better tool to reach a wider audiences. For as long as Iran has been, the language of literature has been Persian. I do not think any one bothered Shahriyar when he wrote his poems in Turkish, but they did not publish that specific book since there was not enough demand for it.
To me oppression is when they prevent one from going to school because he is Turkish. Or if they do not allow someone to have a government job. Or if they put him/her in jail for speaking Turkish. To my knowledge none of the above was true or is true in Iran today. When I was kid in elementary school and junior high school and even in college, there were groups of Turkish students who spoke to each other in their own language and no one bothered them. In fact it was to their advantage to know another language so they could talk freely.
10- If a Kurdish person says I was or I am oppressed, I may believe it since they have a different religious beliefs and sometimes a Persian may say something which offends them and at the same time Kurdistan was ignored economically somehow. If a Blotchi says we are depressed, I do believe him since their region is the poorest in Iran . If an Azeri says they were depressed I would say, 'You Oppressed the whole nation for several hundred years brother. Yes, several hundred years of kings the whole nation, Saljoghian, Ghaznavian , Kan khnaian finally Ghajariyan.'
Tabriz was either the capital city or the place in which the Crown prince was ruling. The first schools, the first new thoughts, the first voices for a better life and demand for constitution came from Tabriz . The most prominent ministers and writers and representatives were also from this region. Wahoo, such an oppressed people!!!!
I was in Fars and did not have a high school in the city, which is bigger than the country of Lebanon , and I was not oppressed. But the poor Tabrizi kids who learned a new language and mastered everything with money coming from the oppressed government were able to get their doctoral degrees, become ministers, run the newspapers, become singers, be the best writers or poets in the Persian language etc ... He was oppressed!!!!!
No, to me all Iranians deserve a better government, but they need to be united as one nation not divided and separated. That is why we are where we are. No one thinks of Iran as a whole. They want a separate life, even a backward government and poor nation of Ghajar's time, which were under foreign influences; weak and powerless are more attractive to us than being one strong nation and that is sad.