Friday, March 13, 2009

Iranian-American journalist discussed Iran

In this video Azadeh Moaveni, an Iranian-American journalist discusses on her personal experiences living and working in Iran, including how, after facing the threat of arrest, she fled the country to protect her family's safety.

Overall is relatively good discussion but her excitement about contraception program shows that she doesn’t know about birth control program during Shah but I can open up that section a bit.

In 1960s during Shah era, Iranians noticed that their population is growing fast and their resources are limited so they started a birth control programs. Ayatollahs were opposed to this program so they issued some sort of religious decrees to families that birth control policy is against Islam and will of Allah so many families went against contraception program and made more than usual kids!

Then after Islamic revolution in 1979, Khomeini and other ayatollahs insisted to have large families because revolution needed fresh men and women and Iran-Iraq war needed more martyrs, army men and women. Thanks to ayatollahs, by mid-1980s our population almost doubled from 30 some million to 60 million.

So the contraception program that Ms. Azadeh Moaveni is talking about is renewed program that once denounced by same ayatollahs and of course their followers and now everyone is paying the price of those mistakes.

Check this paragraph to see the degree of insanity among these ayatollahs and how they governed Iran after revolution.

[Between the Islamic revolution of 1979 and 1996, Iran’s population almost doubled, from 35 million to more than 60 million. Faced with internal and external threats to the revolution, including the 1980-1988 war with Iraq, Iran’s spiritual leaders regularly extolled large families as a way of preserving the revolution. The legal age of marriage was dropped to 9. Today, at least 43 percent of the population is under 17. Despite official support for larger families, many Iranians in the early 1980s found themselves faced with soaring inflation and eroding wages, a common deterrent to large families. Dr. Alireza Marandi, then Iran’s Deputy Minister of Health and its current Minister of Health, recognized that Iran’s population growth rate was rocketing out of control. At the time, considering the very conservative religious climate, Marandi did not deem it wise to bring the population issue into public debate. Instead, he quietly kept alive a prerevolutionary program of distributing free condoms and I.U.D.’s while maneuvering for an opening. One word from the Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini and all contraceptives would disappear throughout the country. In 1988, after the Cabinet approved birth control by a single vote, Marandi asked for a public statement supporting contraception. But the internal opposition was so strong, the Cabinet vote was not announced. Instead Ayatollah Khomeini suggested a public discussion that sent Muslim scholars digging through their texts for religious sanctions that could be cited in support of birth control. The International Encyclopedia of Sexuality: Iran by Paula E. Drew, Ph.D.


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