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July 02, 2005

Open Thread: Akbar Ganji on Indefinite Hunger Strike
Babak Seradjeh  [info|posts]

Release Ganji! Campaign,

I decided to open this thread for those (I hope many) who are interested in doing something real about Ganji's situation. This is the least I thought I could do at this point. I hope the comment section of this post turns into a good place for brainstorming on what can be done concretely first and foremost for Ganji, for his freedom. So please keep your comments related to the topic.

Of special note in this regard is his recent letter in which he sounds really close to the end. Even if one regards this cynically as a move by him to gain some attention, I think we owe it to him and ourselves to take it seriously and give him the attention he deserves.

An Iranian Student (AIS) at July 2, 2005 04:12 AM [permalink]:

Well, just to start, the simplest suggestion would be to hold demonstrations in free countries to attract attention.

Demonstrations in Iran of course are going to be much much more effective, but given the situation they need to be organized by more sophisticated communities to have a chnace of success.

These were the obvious ones. I persume the main idea behind this thread is to include other more effective approaches alongside this.
i hope others will join with better suggestions.

reza at July 2, 2005 05:07 AM [permalink]:

yes we need organization, not only for this time, but also for several events in the future. Justice and liberty have a lot of friends and supporters that need to be mobilized. for the longer term goals, we should have a global party that organizes events for it's members. For now and for Ganji: sending letters and emails or telephone calls to our congressmen , university deans, news agencies , radio stations, bbc and gooya websites, aclu, friends, everybody we know including non-iranian activists about the situation. let everybody know that iranian students and their friends and other frieds of liberty and justice will get together on let's say 4th of july at a certain hour at the usual gathering point of their cities to protest the situation.

Arash Jalali at July 2, 2005 01:26 PM [permalink]:

There are two parameters involved in any kind of activism: peacefulness and danger. So theoretically we have three types of choice:

1- Peaceful and Safe, e.g. online and offline petitions, demonstrations in foreign countries.

2- Peaceful and unsafe, e.g. sit-ins in places like universities, next to the Evin prison, in front of the UN office, the Justice department buildings, etc. in Iran, as well as distribution of pamphlets, SMS messages, emails, or acts of civil disobedience (strikes, cancelling universities classes and exams, etc.)

3- Violent and unsafe, riots, all-out demonstrations and protests, and so on and so forth...

I let others decide which ones are realistic and which ones are not, considering the circumstances.

I personally think the best thing we can do at this juncture is create as big a publicity as possible. This might very well be the only thing that "might" be able to save his life, or at least delay any fatal plots against him. A petition signed by a large number of students in- and outside Iran could be one way to attract a lot of publicity.

Shabnam at July 2, 2005 01:42 PM [permalink]:

I think we should rule out the violent and unsafe from the above categories. As for paceful and unsafe, it is something that people who are living in Iran should decide. I don't see myself in a position to tell someone in Iran to do this. But as for peaceful and safe, I am all for it. I agree with writing letter to people, who have the abillity to make this more publicized. Also I agree wth gatherings. But in Vancouver, we dn't have any Iranian government buildings to gather infront of it. So we should think of some plecae else. Each of us can organize a gathreing in our cities for the same day. 4th of july cannot be good for us, since it is too soon and not a holiday in Canada. We need time for pubilicity and making a crowd.

Babak S at July 2, 2005 01:49 PM [permalink]:

First a suggestion for this thread:

If possible, leave an e-mail address in your comment, encoded the way you like against spam robots, so we can contact each other off-line, and perhaps make a mailing list for this purpose.

babaks AT gmail -dot- com

My thoughts:

I think we should make at this point all we can to publicize the issue wherever we are. For those who are in Iran there some risks so naturally what they can do is limited to the kind of risks that can be taken. But for those of us who are abroad I thought about the following to do; some of these can also be done inside Iran. I have devided these into online and off-line activities, but they are all aimed towards the real people and concrete results:

1. Help expand a source page on Akbar Ganji. The article on Akbar Ganji on Wikipedia is natural place to do so. Everyone can do this, whether a member of WP or not.

2. Prepare a logo to be used in weblogs, web sites, etc. The same logo can be used off-line to give the actions a sense of unity.

1. Create handouts, leaflets, etc. This can be done by putting together some info on Akbar Ganji, say from the source page at Wikipedia, and other info on his situation and a request to pressure politicians of the country to take a stand in support of Ganji.

2. Make a banner, perhaps out of the (online) logo and wear it, or fix it in public places for Ganji's freedom.

3. Talk to friends.

4. Set up awareness botths in public places, especially universities, libraries, down town areas, etc. Talk to people, hand out the leaflets, etc.

5. Make petitions. (further thoughts appreciated)

6. Set up rallies. (further thoughts appreciated)

Babak S at July 2, 2005 01:51 PM [permalink]:

About the e-mail: you can leave the e-mail in the e-mail address box; this could be encoded automatically and may not stay on the page forever, so there will be less risk of being stolen by spam robots.

anita at July 2, 2005 02:09 PM [permalink]:

i didn't have time to go through all comments(suggestions), but i think maybe we could ask all iranian journalists, writers, artists, ... the same groups, associations, ... who supported Hashemi against Ahmadi-Nejad to write a collective letter to the iranian authorities(Khatami or even "rahbar") and ask for Ganji's freedom and medical treatment. then we could also kinda threat them that if they don't do it, we would write our letter to the international organizations like UN, EU, ... and will inform them that if he dies or is has any other health problem becuz of strike and confinement, I.R.Ian is responsible only!!

anita at July 2, 2005 02:16 PM [permalink]:

sorry for my many typo's... i typed it rapidly.
by I.R.Ian in the last line i mean I.R.Iran, and in the third line 'threaten' is correct instead of threat... there are some more mistakes!!!! sorry!
another suggestion:
we also should infrom all our foreign friends, especially who have some freinds working as journalists, lawyers, tv program producers, film-makers... even artists in foreign countries. we should inform as many foreigners as possible. why don't we write about this matter in our weblogs/websites, unanimously, during a couple of days or longer, till something is done??!!!!

Babak S at July 2, 2005 05:48 PM [permalink]:

I have created a sort of logo/banner/? from a photo of Ganji plus a few words. I put here three different sizes of it: Large and Small and smaller. Please let me know what you think and if you have any suggestions. I'll then make them available on the body of this post.

reza at July 2, 2005 07:15 PM [permalink]:

How is it if we add a sentence to the banner to the effect "contact your congressman/radio/tv/or even khamenei's office about it"? so that the reciever of the massage has an idea how to support Ganji's release

anita at July 3, 2005 12:29 PM [permalink]:

hey guys;
i sent an email to
asking them for updating their petition about Ganji. i also informed them of the latest news about him. (please you guys also send them emails).
Another suggestion:
let's translate Ganji's latest message to people as well as a summary of the way the regime was trying to kill him in the prison a couple of weeks ago into different languages we know:English, Frnech, German, Spanish, Japanese...and send them to different media /journals all over the world.
we can ask our friends of diff. nationalities to help with translation.
Even some of the big world press media don't know about Ganji's latest situation now!
we should try to let them know.

Babak S at July 3, 2005 02:19 PM [permalink]:


Ganji's latest letter has been translated into English. You can find it at Free Ganji, a weblog dedicated to the translation of his writings. It was linked in FToI Linkdooni. There is also a web site, Mosters and Critics, that publishes translations of news stories published in Farsi in domestic newspapers or news agencies into English, but I'm not sure on what basis they choose their pieces. This usually for-fee service is free of charge at this web site.

But in all, it is a good suggestion to translate the news on him into English. English is the first most important language to go for; I have a feeling translation into other languages will be done automatically by news agencies as soon as a news piece in English is published in some respectable news agency.

anita at July 3, 2005 04:46 PM [permalink]:

thanks Babak;
i asked a french friend of mine to know what news coverage about iran is overwhelming in France and Europe these days. he said: only the new president and a little about his background as a member of those who took hostage of the U.S. embassy officers in 1979.
i talked of Ganji and his situation, he had no idea although he is a kinda person who is always aware of the important news going on in diff. countries.
what i think is drawing the big media's attention to this issue now. if for instance the national tv of france has a small news piece about Ganji only one day, it can make a lot of people in France aware of this disaster.
i will ask my friend help me with translating the letter to french and will ask him if he has any friend out there who can send this to some french media at least.
please ask others who are in other countries or have friends in diff. countries do the same!
thank you again.

heydarbaba at July 3, 2005 04:58 PM [permalink]:

There could be two purposes in doing this: a) The sole purpose is the release of Ganji based on the assumption that he truly is as sick as he claims to be, the best course of action would be to contact some international organizations (Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International...) and have them go verify his health, physical and mental. b)The purpose of this action is to get Ganji released from prison regardless of his health.
For option A, a massive contact (however organized) with the international organizations would be very effective and practical. Contact with different news outlets might be effective. Option B is a totally different ball game. Many of the methods of activity mentioned in the above posts by different people , if ever acted on, will not be very effective at the end. Why? At the end one needs to realize that in the Dog-Eat-Dog realm of the Animal Kingdom of Corprotocracy with hegemonic ambitions , euphemistically called World, Ganji's are Dimes and Nickles and nothing more. They can only be turned into a bargaining chips by the Good Fellas or the Not-So-Red Eminence running the world. In the cold calculations of the Good Fellas, I believe Ganji is considered a Loose Canon, One Man Crusade, Shooting for the Moon, or simply put a Suicide Bomber of a different sort. Recently white house demanded an immediate release of Ganji by the Iranian authorities. Given the US conduct at the "Gulags of Our Times" in Gitmo and the "Abu Gharib", this call by Bush doesn't carry much weight. They didn't even pursue it any further in order to protect themselves from more embarrassment. For the option B, getting other countries involved is the worst course of action. What makes it more difficult is that his own ex-friends have abandoned him. There are some powerful in Iran who would press for his release, but his irrational behavior outside the jail doesn't leave much choice for these people. Ganj needs to wake up and smell the coffee. Maybe somebody decided to do a little bit of "Use'em and Lose'em" and Ganji allowed himself to be at the receiving end of it. He has to let the by gones be by gones. I can best describe my feelings by this article. For those who are camping in option B I would suggest do Ganji a favor and send his family the above link and ask them to read it and read it again and show Ganji the light. This is called Tough Love.

An Iranian Student (AIS) at July 3, 2005 06:55 PM [permalink]:

Great Anita,

I totally agree with you about the need to bring MSM inot the picture. Good luck with that in France.

Monika at July 4, 2005 09:29 AM [permalink]:

It`s encouaging. At long last some fellow-countrymen of Ganji want to advoate him. But it`s never too late for Iranians to fulfill ( I should call)their duty towards him. I am sure Ganji will excuse our retard,as he is such a patience.
I agree that there should be an organized schedual along with a much more powerful way of announcing its exact time. pick the ones Iranian youth are interested in, e.g. Radio Farda, Orkut,Anjoman Eslami of Universities, Yahoo Groups,etc. & let us participate.

anita at July 4, 2005 11:44 AM [permalink]:

hi guys;
i just sent an email to
the European Court of Human Rights.
I don't know if they work for non-European countries/cases, but let's just try it.
Please you guys send them emails and ask if they can do anything for this issue...
Don't forget you can still send emails to
Reporters Without Borders and ask them to update their petition and info about Ganji.
a note to heydarbaba;

dear friend;
i kinda agree with you, but totally dissagree with that letter published in
this is true that even ganji's old friends have used him to their own benefits and might continue doing that later as well.
but now someone is suffering in prison becuase he didn't want to write a letter of repentance and didn't want to take what he had said back, whereas the I.R.I claims there is no prisoner of thought/idea in iran!!!!!
no matter what he had done, and what his old friends are doing now, he is right now, and if we claim to be supporting the right, we should support him as well.
don't forget he is the only one in iran who has had this much courage, the guts to announce publically that Khameneyi should leave his postion!!!!
i have more to say, but unfortunately don't have time now.
we, simply as his fellow country-men, or his fellow human beings, are responsible as well, that's all.

anita at July 4, 2005 07:52 PM [permalink]:

another cool suggestion:
do you guys remember that on "arabic gulf" in place of "persian gulf" issue, there was this guy who made a google bomb a couple of months ago?!?!
i was thinking we could ask someone who can(or the same guy; i know he had a weblog, don't remember which, though)make such a thing for ganji.
i mean, he could make a webpage showing the letter of gannji in three languages of english, french and also persian, which opens up whenever people google "iran" or "iranian new president" or "iran's nuclear power plant"... or any other title you can come up with.
and then we just email all iranians and friends and weblogs to google it so that it works fine for a couple of weeks at least!!!
my friend has translated the letter into french, he is gonna see if he can send it to any of the french news agencies!!!! but the funny thing is the french TV is now on holiday!!!
anyway... that was the latest news from me :)

Shabnam at July 4, 2005 08:08 PM [permalink]:

anita, I am very impressed with your hard work. Thanks a lot. You have great ideas and I hope you continue. If only all of us could do that much... There is another news about Ganji today from His wfe and Shirin Ebadi. His situation is getting worse, and I am not sure how long we have to try to save his life.

I think we can also contact the person in Canada who did a piece on webloggers, he is an Iranian producer in CC (Canadian TV), may be he will be able to make a program about Ganji. I think his name is Farid Ha'eri nejad. We can also ask people with popular weblogs to do some piece about Ganji all in the same day. For example Thursday or Friday will be free-ganji day and all bloggers write smething about him. They did that a while ago for something else. We can each contact a blogger that we know, and ask them to do this.

Shabnam at July 4, 2005 08:09 PM [permalink]:

Sorry a typo in the last post, CC is wrong. I meant CBC (canadian TV).

Mosharekat at July 5, 2005 09:52 AM [permalink]:


SG at July 5, 2005 10:01 AM [permalink]:

Great minds make great mistakes, but this may be irrelevant here. I think people who truly care for Ganji (and do not just want to share in his campaign for free) should beg him to stop his hunger strike, because his hunger strike is born out of his stubbornidity and will probably (and sadly) lead to his demise. Then after a few weeks he will be forgotten and nothing good will come out of it. The only outcome of this saga is Iranians will lose an unusually brave man.

anita at July 5, 2005 02:25 PM [permalink]:

Hélène Flautre, Présidente de la sous commission des droits de l'Homme (head of the commission for human rights) has sent a letter to Michael Matthiessenle, Représentant personnel pour les droits de l'homme du secrétaire général du Conseil de l'Union européenne (personal representative for the general secretary of the human rights council of the EU) today (5 juillet 2005) about Ganji's current situation...
i dunno where i can find the original letter, but you can find it in gooyanews in both french and persian.

anita at July 5, 2005 02:56 PM [permalink]:

dear shabnam;
i also had thought of your latest suggestion, but then considering the fact that he must also be aware and also Nikahang might have also suggested him, i thought maybe it's not really possible, or not as soon as what we want/expect!! therefore, i started to do something on my own first.
now, me and my french friend who have contacted some press media in france as well as their TVs, are very ordinary people and who cares for our letters/emails?!?!?
but still, i'm pretty sure it will have its own impact!!

hope more people get involved!!

An Iranian Student (AIS) at July 5, 2005 03:57 PM [permalink]:

Sa'di , the Iranian great poet has a wonderful verse:

Bihonaran honarmand raa natavaanand ke bebinand
hamchonan ke sagan-e baazaari sag-e seyd raa,
mashghaleh baraarand va pishaamadan nayaarand.

(Those without art and virtue can't bear to see a amn of virtue and an artist, just as dogs of the market vis a vis a hunting hound.
They make noise, but dare not step forward.

The reactions of the IRI regime, the "reformist" section of it, and some who put certain comments in the blogosphere, including here, just reminded me of this for no reason what so ever!

SG at July 5, 2005 04:11 PM [permalink]:

I think Ganji has unwittingly let himself be manipulated by the Iranian regime. The game of politics is not meant to be fair, nor is it for the naive idealist. Having ignored this little truism, he's made some bad moves and now he finds himself stuck and can't un-do his errors without losing face. I really hate to accept that Iranian hardliners are much smarter than their opponents (though the recent events made it clear that they are), and I certainly hate them to enjoy watching Ganji die in agony, without requiring the regime to do anything to kill him.

someone who is usually silent at July 5, 2005 08:21 PM [permalink]:


I think your comments are not really relevant here, neither are heydarbaba's comment (since he stopped, I am not really talking to him, I think he was smart enogh to know this is not his place).

I personally like to see suggestions for helping Ganji. For critisizing him, please write your own post and let people criticize him as much as they want. This can also be done after he dies. What we like to do here is urgent, and I don't think any of us, who care about Ganji, want to hear what you are saying now. It is neither constructive nor helpful. So please either make a constructive suggestion, if it is in your capacity, or stop interrupting the relevant and urgent discussions.

SG at July 6, 2005 01:44 AM [permalink]:

someone with a very long name:

First of all, I should like to draw your attention to two words that appear in the name of this website: Free Thoughts.

Secondly, I guess I did have a suggestion for helping Ganji, but I assume you were not "smart enough" to catch it: Encourage him to give up his stupid (I'm afraid you make me use this tone) hunger strike, because if people do so, then he may save his face by saying something like since the Iranian people asked him, he honors their wish and agree to give it up for now, or something.

Thirdly, I wanted to add something about how ineffectual such "online activism" is, but I remembered that we just experienced it less than a month ago, so no "Thirdly" for you.

PS at July 6, 2005 01:58 AM [permalink]:

I personally have a hard time believing that people like this couple are purely caring about Ganji's health. OO KOJA, INA KOJA! They just want to make Ganji yet another excuse to put IRI "under international pressure". Ganji is just a means for them to their own ends. By verbally supporting Ganji (and not even caring enough to have a hunger strike themselves) they may just be after using his name to buy political credit for themselves.

anita at July 6, 2005 11:47 AM [permalink]:

To SG;
the way you say things, the tone you use,.. can always indicate who you are and what intentions you have.
if you have suggetions, make it in a clear/polite/constructive way. you don't need to mix your suggestions with your own personal ideas so that you end up using "stupid" or other diminutive adjectives with any noun.
plus, you use the word "die" about Ganji, so easily that one thinks you are just waiting for it to happen, as if it's just nothing!
i might not agree with all Ganji's acts, but now it's on us to support him; and above all we should let the world know what is really going on in the prisons in iran.
not to mention that Ganji has been treated really bad during this past 5 years and the prosecutor has always added some new unrealistic charges to his file. he was promised to get released for medical treatment right before election, but since he didn't start disqualifying Hashemi, and instead he boycotted the entire election, they took him back to prison.
no-one wants him to continue hunger strike, but when there is no hope for the law to be enforced in iran, you have no way rather than sacrificing your own health!!!
yeah, he is being used even by his own old friends somehow,... but we people, if we claim we support the free people, the free lovers... we should support him as well.
also, i should kindly ask those who come comment here that we need suggestions, but more than that we need actions!! please inform any foreigner you know about the matter and its details.
if you happen to know any journalist in any foreign journal, email them and inform them of the issue.
thanks to those who have constructive suggestions and those who do something at least.

SG at July 6, 2005 01:21 PM [permalink]:


I don't like Ganji to die, because I believe despite whatever disagreements I may have with him (and who the hell do we think we are, sitting here in our safe havens in America or Europe, to agree or disagree with Ganji, suffering in the corner of his cell?) and his choice of tactics, he is a worthy Iranian (of which we have few) whose life can benefit us much more than his death.

Like you, I am angry, because I realize that we at our computers are helpless and cannot do much to better the situation. Ganji's lawyer happens to be a Nobel Peace Prize winner and apparently she hasn't been able to do much either.

shairah at July 6, 2005 08:49 PM [permalink]:

The greatest problem facing our world today is all represented by that one small phrase, nameley "I couldn't care less" or "I don't care". If people would care more, it would make a tremendous difference in the world. As far as Akbar Ganji is concerned, he is one of the few heros of our time. Unfortunately, like India's Gandhi, few people can relate to the true strengh of spirit exemplified by these great men. The term "martyr", once having represented something of importance has become associated with the wrongful actions of misled people. If Gangi dies in prison for representing the struggle for freedom amongst the people of Iran, than he will be one of the few deserving of this title.... and I don't mean in the radical "islamisized" definition of the word. In any case, I hope it doesn't have to come to that.

It is hopeful that people (even people who are not from Iran - such as myself) are starting to take notice of situations around the world which affect human rights and freedom. Hopefully this Ganji situation will help to make others aware as well. Awareness is the first step towards accomplishment.

Shabnam at July 6, 2005 08:51 PM [permalink]:

I agree with anita about SG. I don't think he can bring any excuses after what he has said.

But besides the irrelevant comments of some people:

1. It seems that the number of letters and petitions are increasing. I don't know how effective they are, but it is good to make the issue known to the public outside Iran.

2. Any word on the google bomb? I think it may be too hard to make it for the key words such as Iran. So may be we need some other strategy.

3. anita talked about talking to the people in the press, I personally do not know anyone. But what about well-known Iranian bloggers? People like Nikahang or Nabavi?

The news about G8 meeting is dominant now in here, and in Iran people are getting used to nd are busy with their new president. So it is hard to make the word go around. But he situation is very urgent. we are running out of time.

An Iranian Student (AIS) at July 6, 2005 08:59 PM [permalink]:

I agree anita,
start spreading the news. We have been trying these days. Please, join in!
And don't get disracted from teh extra noise. It seems inevitable.
BTW, it is very very ineresting that those who cried out loud, hired buses or starting a telephone revolution etc to campaign for he likes of Rafsanjani seem to have decided to remain silent now. Very very illuminating for the rest of us. I think it is up to us to take sime time making decisions, reviewing and revising about our connectionjs after all this is over.
Yes, Shirin Ebadi though meaning well, unlike certain others, is proving herself the incompetent clueless person that she always was. Unfortunately. But at least she has been rying all this time.

anita at July 6, 2005 10:54 PM [permalink]:

hey everyone;
i'm so happy that we all agree on this fact that we should let the world know the truth.
Ganji is suffering now, he is doing it for all of us. i personally don't agree with all the things he does or has done, but he is the only one who has dared to say openly that "Khamenei" has to leave his position. he didn't agree to write a letter of repentance to denounce all his ideas/thoughts(to get released). And one thing that makes me(and all of us) mad is that even his old friends are using him and his name to their own benefits, and/or they leave him alone when he needs them!!!
if now we don't support him, we can never tell the next generations that we tried what we could do (the least we could do) for the future of iran.
i'm not in iran either, i live in peace in north america and have my education, my fun, my jazz fest, my freedom, my drinks, my bars, my interests without any fear... but every moment that i have fun or enjoy freedom here, i think of each and every one of iranians who deserves these but ridiculously is deprived of all of them.

sorry, i don't wanna make a speech here... i just want to let you all know that The European Court of Human Rights has replied my email and said that since i'm iranian and iran is not a member of EU, i can't apply for a new case. that's bad news, but i have asked my french friend to contact them on his own part, on our behalf... i have no news from him yet, tho.
The Reporters Without Borders also emailed me back and said that they are in close contact with Ganji's wife and are quite aware of the issue. of course my request from them was to update their petition for Ganji, but they didn't reply this. probably there are some concerns for them, which we don't know!!!
i have emailed a acouple of journalists here and there... and i'm gonna do more, in diff. foreign media, mostly french,... i have gotten no reply yet.
but what i suggest is that all of us can find nice articles in diff. foreign press media about iran, we can simply email the writers of those articles and even send emails to the editors-in-chief of those media and let them know of the issue.
you can refer to the latest Ganji's letter in english here
and for the thread supporting him, this current page.
also if you want the french version of his letter, i can send it to you guys, or maybe Babak can post it up here!!?!
so you just write a short email and explain the issue and refer them to these pages, and tell them that we just want them to know, to know the truth.

that's all from me.... sorry i wrote a lot tonight!!!
again, thanks to everone here!!

anita at July 6, 2005 11:13 PM [permalink]:

oh something i forgot:
about Google bomb, i found the guy who had made the "arabian gulf" thingy and emailed him. he was nice enough to reply me and explain that it's kinda impossible, as shabnam said, becuz of the word choice to key in!!
i suggested "iran's nuclear program', since it's something many are talking about these days, but probably this is not good, either.
he says" it might only work with the word "Ganji", but then the number of indexes should go so high that can make it work!!!! i mean how many people in the world are going to google in "Ganji" ?!?!?
so, i dunno... i still hope maybe he can come up with something good. if you want to know better, read this part of his weblog (in persian):

btw, i forgot to thank Babak who opened this thread and all his efforts.
it's good we all got together here, with sort of one goal!:)

heydarbaba at July 7, 2005 04:51 AM [permalink]:

I wish you left an email address so I could respond to your post. I wouldn't want to post it here because I don't want to interrupt the frenzy...I don't mean to discourage or disparage your efforts but you are dead wrong on couple of things in your comments to me. If you leave an addy I will write to you ..otherwise I will just continue to suffer in silence!!!lol...

heydarbaba at July 7, 2005 04:57 AM [permalink]:

I wish you left an email address so I could respond to your post. I wouldn't want to post it here because I don't want to interrupt the frenzy...I don't mean to discourage or disparage your efforts but you are dead wrong on couple of things in your comments to me. If you leave an addy I will write to you ..otherwise I will just continue to suffer in silence!!!lol...

Monika at July 7, 2005 04:59 AM [permalink]:

Never feel pity for the ones who are indifference to the one that jeopardizes his life becasue of them. These people deserve the mess they are in. Otherwise they wouldn`t tolerate this chaos. I suggest that you never remember them in your good times. Just feel lucky you were clever enough to leave this disorder and have fun.
If only people in Iran were half sensible as you guys are. Some say Ganji deserves what they do to him. Some say he is crazy to go on Hunger strike, and some people shake their heads saying if you only knew how many die in hush and no one ever knows. I am sorry to say we ourselves are the ones to prepare the patron of all this terrorism. There is nothing left to negate it in my mind, they have proved it best not long ago.
I have asked a professor friend in the United States to help about Ganji, if he could.

anita at July 7, 2005 09:06 AM [permalink]:

dear heydarbaba;
my email:

Aniranianstudent(AIS) at July 7, 2005 01:17 PM [permalink]:


this behaviour of people is natural under ideological tyrannies as brutal as these savages. They have almost destroyed trust, with their savagery and effective campaigns of disinformation or news blackout. That is why those outside have such an important responsibility.

We have an element of the regime that post comments here. There has been a history of it that I think you should know.

anita at July 7, 2005 01:41 PM [permalink]:

dear AIS;
i don't know who is appointed by the regime to comment here!!! but please email me, i have no clue!! i mean i haven't heard about it. merci

Arash Jalali at July 7, 2005 03:53 PM [permalink]:

Great news folks!
Looks like we are not alone! Look here:

anita at July 7, 2005 05:13 PM [permalink]:

hey guys;
check out this :
a bunch of offices of watch human rights all over the world...
let's do something all of us please.
let's pick couple of offices (any you want, but i persoanlly prefer europeans), then we email them giving a short account on the ganji's issue and other political prisoners who encounter injustice in iran.
we give links to ganji's letter in english to the same page i said once(and Babak had linked before in his comments)... if you want the french version, just let me know, although i can take care of it by myself.
but i guess, the more emails we can send them, the better, eh?!!?
just hurry up please!!
thanks :)

relaseganji at July 7, 2005 05:46 PM [permalink]:

anita at July 7, 2005 05:49 PM [permalink]:

me again!!! :)
if you like, in your emails to human rights watch, you can link to the french version of the letter here:

Shabnam at July 7, 2005 07:34 PM [permalink]:

Hi anita,

I think we should email the ones on the countried we reside. Why do you think the European ones are better? Is there a specific reason I am not aware of? Thanks.

anita at July 7, 2005 08:36 PM [permalink]:

dear Shabnam:
Europe is closer to iran and people there are more aware and more realistic than say, Americans; they are more aware than Canadians, maybe becuz of the geographic situations!!!
but i was amazed that an Australian had read here as well...!!!
so, that's the only reason, plus the EU talks with Iran over nuclear programs...
i will email a couple of them, i mean i will send one and cc to two or three more of those offices.
hopefully it's going to work.

btw, if you happen to know any foreign friend who can translate his letter to other languages like German, Dutch, Russian, Spanish, ...even Arabic, just don't hesitate please!

Shabnam at July 8, 2005 02:20 PM [permalink]:


I don't particularly think that europeans are more aware than canadians about Iran. But I accept it from you. I have not talked to any europeans about it, so would not know.

Which ones did you choose to email? Let me know, and ma be we can contact the same oones if you think it is more effective?

anita at July 8, 2005 03:17 PM [permalink]:

Don't know how much it would be effective. but it will have its impact, especially if it is written with more emphasis on letting the people of the world know the truth and raising awareness, rather than asking for sympathy. (although we need their support!)
I, actually emailed many of them, all Europeans and even one in NY; and also the Canadian one.
i personally think if they see ordinary people are sending them emails and are worried and want the world to know what is really going on, they will take actions!
i received a reply from the Berlin office, but it's totally in German :D...& i dunno German !

as for comparing Europeans with Americans or Canadians regarding issues in Iran... well, it was just based on my own experience!!

shairah at July 8, 2005 06:53 PM [permalink]:

sorr to all if i'm one of the people with irrelevent posts. i enjoy reading all of the inspiring thoughts and ideas on this site, and i wish i had something more worthwhile to say. if anyone has ideas ie. sending e-mails and links, i would be happy to help. please don't put people down by saying their thoughts are irrelevant. it is in the best interest of everyone to encourage people who are in fact interested in these matters. we may not all be the generators of great ideas, but we are great potentials for getting things accomplished. :)

anita at July 9, 2005 01:55 PM [permalink]:

UK Presidency of EU 2005 calls on Iran to release political prisoner, Akbar Ganji. read it here.

anita at July 9, 2005 01:56 PM [permalink]:

UK Presidency of EU 2005 calls on Iran to release political prisoner, Akbar Ganji. read it here.

anita at July 9, 2005 02:16 PM [permalink]:

sorry, i got error messages while posting the above news. sorry it's twice now!

click at July 9, 2005 07:16 PM [permalink]:

An Iranian Student (AIS) at July 9, 2005 11:41 PM [permalink]:

There are rumors that Akbar Ganji is in a coma now.
Please join in his support before it is too late.

Mohammad Reza at July 10, 2005 05:22 PM [permalink]:

Dear Friends,

It seems that Akbar Ganji's health is deteriorating rapidly. If he goes on like this, the unthinkable may happen. Please speed up your efforts. Iran does not have many people like him. His loss would be a major blow to democratic movement.

Behnoud at July 11, 2005 09:46 PM [permalink]:

(Persian article)

anita at July 13, 2005 01:43 AM [permalink]:

le mond has this article about Ganji and the fact that the US and the EU have called on Iran for the release of Ganji.

Howevere, the last paragraph of this French article is worth being translated to English here:
on 26th of june, the elected president, Ahmadi-Nejad, in his first press conference after the presidential election, in response to a question regarding Ganji said:" if i interfere in the affairs of justice (judiciary affairs),it's dictatorship; howevere, if i see that the rights of a person is rididculed, it's interference."

i don't get it, honestly!!!! Has anyone seen this in English or original persian somewhere?!?!
this guy, ahmadinejad, seems to be used to talking like encapsulating everyhting in a weird shell of play-with-words!!!

Babak S at July 13, 2005 02:31 PM [permalink]:


That last sentence is not translated correctly. The very last part is "I will interfere." Although I agree that he has a way of masterfully putting together non-sense!

anita at July 13, 2005 06:15 PM [permalink]:

thanks Babak, yeah i guess i made a mistake in translating it, "it's interference" should be: "i'll interfere!!'i was very tired...!! sorry... but still it's not clear what he means by that! i mean he wants to say if i don't interfere, it's becuz no person's rights are disrespected!!!!???

i was extremely moved by looking at these fotoz from Ganji.

having no food, enough nutritions... will have a tremendously neg. effect on the body and brain, ...!!!

Babak is trying hard, as far as i know, what about the rest?!?! please go talk to anyone you know , anyone who is in a press media or TV or Radio, anywhere in the world!!! this situation is getting really ridiculous!!!!

anita at July 14, 2005 12:10 AM [permalink]:

liberation, has this news about Ganji:
Iran : le dissident Ganji en danger
the journalist prisoner on a hunger strike for 32 days
the news gives a brief account on the important issues about him, the fact that he boycotted the election and what Ahmadi-Nejad has said in response to a question about Ganji's case; also about the fact that Ganji has blamed Khamenei as the person in charge for his situation...
the news article also gives a short report on a demonsterarion pro release of Ganji in front of Tehran University when some people got arrested and their protest was getting avoided to spread more by the police.

anita at July 14, 2005 12:12 AM [permalink]:

the above news is here

sorry, dunno why the link didn't work!!!

anita at July 15, 2005 12:22 AM [permalink]:

i'm sure you all know about it; but just in case, please read this and sign it.

anita at July 16, 2005 02:29 PM [permalink]:

Bobby Sands fought for freedom of the Irish people by going on hunger strike at the Maze Prison, and ...
a street in Tehran was immediately named after him( where the British Embassy was located)...
and now, Zahra Kazemi dies at the Evin, and Akbar Ganji......
yes, "our revolution in 1979 wasn't meant to prevail democracy in iran", says Ahmadi-Nejad!!!!


Hooman at July 17, 2005 04:01 AM [permalink]:

Hey guys:
I have a suggestion and if you agree we need to be really fast. If we need to get Ganji out of jail, we need to push Europe to force Iran to release him. What about writing a letter to European Union President and ask him to take all European ambassadors out of Iran? That may work because only Europe can force Iran’s government.

anita at July 17, 2005 04:10 PM [permalink]:

Houman and all;
Europe has explicitly said(in response to US suggestion about iran) they need Iran's oil, and they can't put a lot of pressure on iran.
but, we can still write a letter (at least as ordinary iranians) that the regime's acts and its tyranny and oppression plus so many other issues are our concerns; while any agreement b/w EU and the regime of iran can be rendered as to accept the oppression and totalitarianism that are imposed and exerted by the regime.

Hooman at July 18, 2005 01:43 AM [permalink]:

Thanks Anita for your reply. However, I still think that this is the only way to put pressure on Iran's government. Beside that, by US and/or Canada's support the situation becomes worse. Therefore, I conclude that EU is the only (because they really can do something if they want, not like Human Watch Right) resource of pressure - however I agree with you that they usually do not support not only because of oil but nuclear issues. May be this idea can be applicable if MANY people ask them. Another source may be inside Iran which seems impossible and late. Wish all the best for his health.

anita at July 21, 2005 06:22 PM [permalink]:

hey everyone;
i'm either very paranoid or the situation makes me feel skeptical, but i don't like this news-blockage about Ganji... i mean no-one knows for sure what is going on in the hospital now, or what situation he is in!?!?
plus, this trend of raising awareness about political prisoners in iran should go on!!
this long night hasn't ended yet!

Babak S at July 22, 2005 04:28 PM [permalink]:

The situation of Ganji in hospital is of great concern. It is said by his friends and relatives that his situation is worse and there is a plausible fear for his life. We should not think that he is free, and according to his family and friends he is still on hunger strike, that is he does not accept food voluntarily. We should become complacent.

anita at July 23, 2005 10:05 PM [permalink]:

i'm scared!! they are trying to kill him!

Shabnam at July 24, 2005 04:36 PM [permalink]:

I think everyone should read Hoder's enlightening article about Ganji. This man is really turning into Keyhan for reformers.

It is really a good read. As a persian saying goes: "until we have Hoder, we have no worries."

"ta hoder ro darim keh ghami nadarim". Or was "if you have Hoder as a friend, you won't need enemies"? You read and decide which is better.

An Iranian Student (AIS) at July 26, 2005 03:09 AM [permalink]:

Shirin Ebadi has been consistently defending Ganji and other political prisoners. As I have said before she has many opinions that I disagree with and IMO her position still has more potential than whatshe is using. For example she could appear in
MSM like CNN etc and talk to millions
about Ganji and others,
Haviong said all this, given what Keyhan
has been publishing recently, she is also
in danger and deserves all our full and unconditional support and
help. I think we should prepare ourself
for defending her and her rights
soon too.

R. at July 27, 2005 04:27 PM [permalink]:

Hello. I saw this website asking for brainstorming. I thought maybe that a way of showing support of Akbar Ganji could be advocating the boycott of the Friday Prayers. Maybe if there were repeated chances of not showing up, it would work. The Friday prayers are one of the regime's main ways of advertising their ideals. Perhaps there are many of the poor that disapprove of the hardliner's bad actions too, and this not showing up won't hurt their chances of putting food onto the table either.

An Iranian student (AIS) at July 27, 2005 11:49 PM [permalink]:

Khatami criticizes Ganji for his hunger strike!


An Iranian student (AIS) at July 31, 2005 07:36 PM [permalink]:

Well, our dear Khatami considres Ganji to be the guilty party in this affair and can't even bring himself to utter his name. I wonder what that other ball of fat, Abtahi, has to say about this now.
So, congratulations to all the supporters and loivers of thsi whore of a president and his "reform" movements.