Friday, June 19, 2009

Silence and the Specter of Death

NOTE: This is posted for a friend, and for his friend, both of whom shall remain anonymous:

All indications are that the rally at 4pm today (Tehran time) in Engelhab Square (marching to Azadi Square) is going forward. As we approach the morning in Iran, our sources are strangely quiet. All are making their final farewells in case they must die. They are preparing for martyrdom, rather than live in an unjust regime with a ruler who cannot hear them, and who can no longer hear God.

At the moment I write this, I cannot imagine how it feels in Tehran, facing almost certain death. I reminded by my contact that the enemy—who has guns—will almost certainly run out of bullets before they can kill everyone. Even if they brought one bullet for every person, it would be more than they could carry. And, it is expected, that some will die before the day is done. But as they see the will of the people manifest, God will provide them with the opportunity to see that what they do is wrong. I only pray that my contact is correct in this.

Khamanei ordered people in his speech to refrain from protests. However, the defiance of Mousavi and the others can only mean that Khamanei is a dying lion. It’s been said on Twitter a few times:

“The lion roars loudest just before death.”

Is that Khamanei? Or is it the will of the people that roars now, forever to be silenced by the louder roar of gunfire?

I feel the anguish of the loss of a friend before he is even gone. And yet, I understand the need for death. In the West, many people don’t understand martyrdom. I am not Muslim, but dying for an ideal is something that I understand. I would die if it would bring freedom to everyone else. But in death, the only guarantee is that death occurs: a death is meaningless if the changes which are sought cannot come about as a result.

God will protect the soul of a martyr. And I pray that this “digital ink” can count for the ink of a scholar. While I wish for peace, it is on occasion that violence becomes a regrettable necessity. This is the case for so long as lies and injustice reign supreme.

Says one part of my possibly final email from my friend:

I go into an uncertain future, save one certainty: our friendship will last until the moment of my death. It is a shame that you have never accepted the Holy Word of the Prophet, peace be upon him. I only hope you continue to read the Holy Word, and that you understand the need for the blood of martyrs today. I hope that God permits the military and the police an opportunity to see Khamanei in the correct light, just as I wish this for myself. The Basiji are certainly not in God’s favor. Be well, and goodbye.

As I read these words, I am actually crying. I’m not a particularly religious person, but if there is a God, may he protect my friend.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]


  1. Very Moving.
    We in Australia have you in our prayers.

  2. You and your friends have my prayers, from Vancouver Canada.