The recent decision by the government of President Hassan Rouhani to unveil a memorial in Tehran to Iran’s fallen Jewish soldiers deserves commendation and respect.
With this decision, President Rouhani has honored the memory of Iranian Jewish soldiers, who like their other Iranian compatriots gave their lives to defend their country against Saddam’s army.
In Iran, during the war against Saddam, we were all one. Iran was our country and we loved and defended her as loyal citizens, no matter what religion we belonged to. And some, like the fallen heroes who were martyred, were willing to pay the ultimate price.
Saddam did not discriminate either. His planes used to bomb civilian areas of my city in Tehran in the most indiscriminate manner. His missiles used to flatten houses no matter what denomination you belonged to. Their goal was to kill as many Iranian civilians as possible. We were all one big target for him. I will never forget the seven years of war which we lived through in Iran, from 1980 – 1987. Nor will millions of other Iranians, some of whom are still grieving over the loss of their loved ones.
I have criticized president Rouhani’s decisions when I have disagreed with them. And I will continue to do that. But his latest decision is one which deserves nothing but praise and respect.