[PROVISIONAL TRANSLATION FROM Persian]

 

[Translator’s notes appear in square brackets.]

[Personal information has been redacted.]

[The excerpt below is from the section of the article that pertains to the Baha’i Faith]

 

[Newspaper:] Ashofteh

[Date:] 15 Shahrivar 1334 [7 September 1955]

[Issue No.:] 35

 

The Ajang Newspaper also published a comprehensive report on the struggle against the Baha’is and the actions they have taken during this period, part of which we will review and present to our readers:

“With the end of Ramadan and the end of Mr. Falsafi’s speeches, it was thought that the issue would finally be resolved. But those who delved deeper into the issue were skeptical and unlikely to find it easy. Subsequent developments have shown that the latter group is right.

“On the one hand, the prominent scholars and clerics of the country by no means found this size of action against the Baha’is sufficient, and called for a full-scale struggle against the Baha’is. Among their demands were the destruction of all Baha’i centres and propaganda premises, confiscation of the properties of wealthy Baha’is, expulsion of all of them from government and national offices and even the deportation of all of them from Iran. These demands have been made over the past few months in various ways: from weekly meetings of clerics in Qom and Tehran to the meetings with the emperor and the prime minister, and finally, the sermons in the pulpits of Tehran and other cities, and even the speech of Safaei, the clerical representative in the National Consultative Assembly, and questioning the government, and they were asked to do it.

“Baha’is, on the other hand, used their various centres around the world to spread propaganda widely in the United States, Europe, Asia, and even Africa, accusing the Iranian government of violating the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and harassing the Baha’i minority in Iran.

“Baha’i propaganda prevailed on several issues and used these points:

  • That the government had closed all their propaganda centres in Iran and confiscated them
  • That the government had destroyed the dome of the Haziratu’l-Quds, and [they used] a photo of Major General Batmangelich, who was [wrecking] the dome of the Haziratu’l-Quds, and published it in foreign magazines
  • Destruction of the house of the Bab in Shiraz and some people looting its furniture in Shiraz
  • The killing of six Baha’i men and a woman in a village in Yazd
  • The stoning of Baha’i centres in Rasht and several other cities
  • Prevention of the sale of goods to the Baha’is and expelling them in some places

 

“The protests and propaganda of Baha’is were initially in the form of countless telegrams sent to the emperor, the parliament, and to the government, and, as reported, these telegrams were transmitted from most countries to Iran, protesting the actions of the Iranian government. Then it took the form of speaking in various foreign meetings and having interviews with journalists. In this regard, the press activity of the Baha’i in the United States and Europe, and in some African countries where the Baha’is have recently infiltrated, and especially in India, has been more extensive and intense.

“Two years ago, four international Baha’i conferences were held outside Iran. One of them was held in [New] Delhi, the capital of India, which was announced later on, and its decisions were published in one of the weekly newspapers in Tehran. At this conference, the Baha’is of India and other countries who had gathered in [New] Delhi invited the president of India, [Jawaharlal] Nehru, and other Indian dignitaries, and carried out a large-scale campaign. (Three other points where the conferences took place were: Wilmette in the United States, Stockholm in Sweden, and Kampala in Africa.) Nehru even gave a speech to the Baha’i community, leaving them completely free in their propaganda.

“As a result, during the recent struggles against the Baha’is, one of the people to whom the Baha’is appealed to enter into negotiations with the Iranian government was Nehru. Nehru also wrote a detailed letter to His Majesty. He pointed out these points and gave some friendly advice to His Majesty.

“Other Baha’i propaganda included questioning the Iranian embassies in foreign countries and raising these questions in the newspapers. They have also made the most of the recent visit of the Iranian foreign minister to the United States and Europe and questioned him in this regard.

“Since the month of Ramadan, when actions were taken against Baha’is in Iran, the government was able to prevent the expansion of anarchy in a timely manner. Everyone predicted that there would be public frenzy during Muharram. Based on this illusion, the government ordered strict measures for maintaining discipline. Additionally, Brigadier General Bakhtiar met with the Shiite religious authority in Qom and it was mentioned that the preachers had been instructed to refrain from renewal of issues in the month of Ramadan; as a result, no mention was made in any of the pulpits.”