Friday, February 06, 2004

Parrot's Perch


A few years ago I was in Recife, Brazil. I visited a site that was made in the memory of those who were tortured and killed during the years of pro-American military dictatorship. The main monument there was made in the memory of those who were tortured by the infamous "parrot's perch" torture rack. Next to the monument there were plaques on the ground in the memory of some of the most prominent intellectuals, poets, and writers of the city who were killed by the military regime during those years. Some of them were socialists, some independent dissidents, some were communists, and some were religious people from Theology of Liberation movement.
Visiting that site I thought of Iran, how similar we are in our experience of dictatorship, and how similarly we are treated when we want to realize our dreams of democracy and freedom of speech. I thought one day we should have something similar to that memorial monument and those plaques, remembering all those who were tortured and killed in Iran because of their believes regardless of their faith or idealogy, either they were monarchist, communist, Muslim, nationalist, or a human rights activist.

I don't know if this happens in my lifetime or not. I don't know if the Iranian nation can understand the idea of democracy at this point of their history the way Brazilian people understand it. It seems years of hate and years of following the logic of "an eye for en eye" has blinded the Iranian nation. We have forgotten the concept of forgiveness.