Well Hanukah is here, and much like all other Jewish schools around the world, it is celebrated by Jewish students in Iran’s Jewish schools.
One of those schools is my old primary school which is called “ettefagh“. It has been functioning for 74 years as a Jewish school in Iran’s capital Tehran. It was established, thanks to the charitable donation of an Iraqi Jewish donor called Mayer Abdullah Batson. The school’s original name was “Mayer Abdullah”, but as its a foreign name, the Iranian ministry of culture (during the Shah) did not allow the school to have such a name.
A different name “ettefagh” which one of its Arabic meanings is “unity” was chosen. The theme of unity was an important one for Iran’s Jewish community, which is why another one of its schools was called “ettehad” meaning unity in Persian.
Below are photos from the main web site of the Ettefagh school in Tehran which shows its Jewish students celebrating Hanukah.
Israel accuses Iran of having expansionist ambitions, Iran accuses Israel of the same.
Meanwhile the Arab world accuses both Israel and Iran of having expansionist ambitions, at the expense of the Arab world.
During the last two weeks:
The Iranian air force attacks ISIS forces inside the territory of an Arab country, namely Iraq.
The Israeli air force reportedly attacks ammunition stores inside the territory of an Arab country, namely Syria.
Maybe the Arab world has a point?
Here is the face of the former president of Iran plastered on a mannequin’s face at a T-Shirt store in Tel Aviv.
Next to him is Vladimir Putin, with lipstick.
Obviously the two are bringing customers because I saw them at the same store in Dizengoff Center about 6 months ago. Only this time I decided to take a photo.
And thats not all. I have seen Israelis wearing Iran Air and Iranian Atomic Energy Agency (AEOI) T-shirts as well. All made locally.
God knows what would happen to a store at a middle class shopping center in Tehran with an Ahmadinejad mannequin.
The only way such a store would make money would be by installing a swear jar outside its window.
I am often asked about the Jewish community in Iran. I have also written a number of blog posts about them.
According to a new article by the Associated Press, life under President Rouhani has improved for Iran’s Jewish community which according to a 2006 census numbered 9252 souls.
It is safe to assume that this number has decreased over to years, due to ageing and more importantly, continued immigration mainly to the U.S.
Click to read the article: Iran’s Jews find greater acceptance under Rohani
اگر این لایحه در مجلس اسرائیل (کنست) تصویب شود, در مواقعی که بین چهره و شخصیت یهودی کشور اسرائیل با قوانین دموکراسی اختلافاتی به وجود اید , یهودی بودن اسرائیل ارجح خواهد بود.
در مورد این لایحه و عواقب ان پریروز با بی بی سی فارسی گفتگویی داشتم.
What was going on inside the Iraqi government when it was caught off guard by the lightning victory of ISIS in the city of Mosul earlier this year?
When the Iraqi government asked for help, which country was the first country to help them, Iran or the US? Which one of them hesitated, and why? what were the consequences of such hesitation?
Has the experience of the Iraqi government with ISIS increased Iran’s influence and standing between Iraqi Kurds and Shiites?
These questions and more are answered in the latest Financial Times podcast, narrated by its chief Middle East correspondent Borzou Daragahi.
You can find the podcast here
none other than Mahmoud Ahmadinejad himself.
Oh yes, 28th of October is the day when the village of Aradan in Iran’s Semnan province first heard the patter of tiny feet in 1956.
And since then, those very same feet have destroyed many things inside Iran.
But, you can’t say Ahmadinejad is not a man of miracles. How can you not believe in miracles when according to the Iranian regime in 2009 he won the presidential elections with votes cast for him in the state of Israel itself. Oh yes, those non-existent ballot boxes in Jerusalem were full of Ahmadinejad votes, thus allowing him to win his non-existent “people’s” victory.
But don’t be sad because you share a birthday with the man . There are people worse off than you. Feel bad for me. I spent so much time researching his life for his biography which I coauthored in 2007 that on couple of occasions I dreamed that I was speaking with him. I distinctly remember that in one dream I was asking him why in 2005 he said he father had died in 1993 when in fact he was alive. His father died in 2006 and not 1993. I can tell you one thing about that experience: at least I will never suffer from narcolepsy.
And we are not the only lucky ones. Today, on his 58th birthday the people of Iran received a brand new newspaper called HOMA (Havadaran-e Mahmoud Ahmadinejad) or supporters of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. You can say what you want about the sanctions, from now on with this newspaper no one can complain about the lack of medication for insomnia in Iran.
So to all you birthday boys and birthday gals today, if you can’t beat the Mach-mood (Mahmoud in an Israeli accent) then join him. Put your dancing shoes on and start dancing to this funky video, made in honor of the man who put the MAD in AhMADinjead. Oh yeah…