White Balloon

Daily Journal of Mahaan, an Iranian-American student residing in USA.

Monday, March 20, 2006

Eide shoma mobarak!

Happy Spring. Happy Norouz. Hope 1385 is a better year for humanity. Certainly 1384 was a challenging and depressing year for Iran. And of course the outlook is quite tough for the coming year, but let's start it with a possitive and optimist view.

And last but not least, happy anniversary to White Balloon! It started 3 years ago on the Norouz eve. Thanks to all the readers for your comments, support and motivations and my humble appology if in some cases I haven't followed up with your comments/request.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Melting the ice of US-Iran dialog

In late 90s when Clinton administration was begging Khatami's government for dialog, the Iranian conservatives did everything to block such an event. In his last attendance at the UN General Assembly(Sep 2000) Bill Clinton sat in for Khatami's speech and showed interest in talking personally to Khatami even at the level of brief encounter in the elevator. There is a rumor that Khatami (who was under serious pressures from conservatives) locked himself in the restrooms for over 10 minutes to avoid any contact.

Anyway, now that the conservatives are in power and the isolated Iran is in its weakest position ever, they are begging for a dialog with US. But since US is in deep trouble in Iraq, the Iranian conservatives have the chance of getting something out of their negotiations. Still, I'm optimist about this development. If there is one thing good out of all of this nuclear crap, it is the fall of the long taboo of dialog between US and Iran.

Monday, March 06, 2006

In Cairo, Day 1

I'm in Cairo, Egypt for a short family related visit.Still I'm quite zoned out and jet lagged. I walked to a new and huge shopping mall tonight. What I saw was literally a picture of "Jihad vs. Mac World". A serious tango of aggressive globalization and local resistance to it. I should definitely see and write more around this concept. Even in this 7th visit, Cairo as the capital of the Arab world and to some extent the Moslem world, has a lot to offer me.I also briefly watched some satellite TV from all around the world: Something that I don't have time, mind and money for it in US. The one from the Iranian government (Jam-e-Jam TV) was the most interesting one. Finally I see some signs of fast paced programming. And to my surprise the TV has relaxed its conservative policies quite a bit: Some interviews with women with ultra relaxed hijabs, some programs which challenge the conservative family costumes, etc. What Islamic Republic is desperate to gain is national unity in these challenging days of nuclear standoff with the west.
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