This one is about Iran.
Today, one of my Iranian friends showed me a blog written by an Iranian girl who has recently migrated to the United States and is apparently studying math there. She writes about her new life, differences about the two cultures, and sometimes about politics.
Her articles are typical of what I can only refer to as « new-comer ». By that, I mean people who, having spent a few months in a foreign country, come to think they have understood everything and start saying absurd things about life in their new home and how much better it is there!
I myself have been a new-comer. I too, have felt those things. And I suppose that she too will someday agree with me.
The things which bothers me the most, is that her posts reminded me of the one single thing I had tried so hard to forget about my people: Racism!
Anti-Arab feelings are really strong among the Iranian youth. Some will say that the advent of the Islamic regime and their negation of our Persian roots are to blame, but I do not think that is an excuse. We act as superior beings, the most intelligent, most capable. We take pride in our « Aryan » origins, we read Mein kampf, and we accuse the Arab invasion (which took place more than 1200 years ago) of being the reason for all our failures. Because of course, if that did not happen, we Iranians, descendants of Cyrus and Darius, would be ruling the world with our obviously superior culture, civilization, and m4d skillz, whereas those Arabs would still be eating lizards!
As for me, I have come to question our relation to our Persian ancestors. We are certainly not Arabs (I mean it as a fact). We do not speak Arab, nor do we share the same culture or even the same religion (There are fundamental differences between Iran’s Shiites and the predominant branch in the Arab world: Sunnites). Yet we are not really the same as the ancient Persians either. Our language has changed so much that almost none is able to read ancient cravings. It has just been so long since that time that we have forgotten practically everything, except that we once ruled the world, and we do not try to push it any further.
Yes, we were invaded by Arabs, and yes at that time we had an empire rivaling Rome, but so many years have gone by, and it would be about time to get over it.
Statement: Arabs have nothing of an inherently inferior race! And nor do other non-Iranian people!
You may find that statement obvious, but I have heard people in my own family think otherwise, and they are not ashamed of expressing it. I dared hope that those living outside and actually having the occasion of meeting foreigners would think otherwise, but I’m afraid I was wrong.
Here is the blog, for the fortunate who happen to be able to read Persian.