[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]


[Adapted from website:] Bazdasht

[Date:] 24 Shahrivar 1395 [14 September 2016]


On the Anniversary of the Martyrdom of His Grandfather, the Grandson of a Baha’i Citizen, Ezzatollah Atefi, Wrote, With Regard to His Arrest:

Three years ago, I wrote a heartfelt note that was never published. The day after we were to hand over our confiscated house, in which we lived, to the brothers of the Mostazafan Foundation [the Foundation for the Poor] I wrote [this] note, which I am now rewriting on the anniversary of the martyrdom of my grandfather Ezzatollah Atefi and his brother Bahman Atefi. On 19 Shahrivar 1360 [7 September 1981], the God-seeking men with weapons martyred both of my loved ones, along with three other fellow citizens, in the midst of a rivalry to protect the revolution and its ideals!

Three years ago, on such a day, my mother said that the cracked roof of this house, under which we were so afraid to sleep during the night, would collapse tomorrow. And because of the impurity of a few Baha’is residing in it, the representatives of the mostazafan [poor] on the earth, with a sharp axe, who needed the house, came up with an idea.

I asked my mother whether it would collapse like the rubble that fell on her thirty years ago. From year 1388 [2009] onwards, its cracks became bigger and its fractures wider. Thirty years ago, by force, you left your house only with an identification document in your hand and went to the city, and overnight, they took away everything you possessed and had worked for throughout the years.

Mother, what can make us happy? The sound of a barrage of bullets that sat on the naked body of the grandfather and his brother that shook the village, or the gun that was pointed at your forehead, threatening you, so that the sound of your cries and anguish would not be heard?

Mr. Ezzat and Mr. Bahman were told that they were free. But they both knew that their souls were free, not the bodies from their bondage.

Where in the world are two prisoners stripped naked, told that they are free and yet they are shot in the back with a barrage of bullets?!

Those who were afraid to hand over the two bodies whose souls and dignity were free, but whose skin, flesh and bones were knotted together, and all their fear was that these two luminous but lifeless bodies would sanctify Israel?!

If these two Baha’is were spies for Israel, then what were they doing in a village and on the agricultural land for so many years?!

I heard that my uncle had hesitated for a few minutes to bury his father and uncle in the place where the [officials] had ordered him to be buried; the guard had scornfully told him to wrap the bodies in a cloth and bury them as soon as possible, and he had to bury his loved ones in a small and shallow grave. But the shot arm of the brother of my grandfather had become stiff, preventing the shattered body from being fully placed in the burial spot, and to solve the problem those God-seeking men kicked and broke his stiff arm and soon placed it in the grave.

In the ideology of which revolution, and in the character of which land can such an action be found?

What should I be happy about?

About whatever has happened to these people?

Should I be happy for the expression of the shame of the interrogator as I described the murder of my grandfather when he shook his head, out of embarrassment and a sense of responsibility, perhaps? This is the same man who has sentenced one of my dearest comrades to twelve years and the other to fifteen years.

Talk about the rhythm of pain and blood on the boots of the revolutionary soldiers on the head and the ribs of my grandfather, whose lifeless body had deceived them into releasing him?!