Thursday, March 26, 2009

Letter to the Iranian Ambassador

March 26, 2009
Los Angeles, California

The Iranian Ambassador to the United States of America
2209 Wisconsin Ave. N.W.
Washington D.C. 20007

Dear Sir,

I’m writing after reading a brief news report on the uncertain fate of the journalist Roxana Saberi in the March 25 edition of the“New York Times.”

The piece reports that your government, after promising to release the woman, now may keep her in custody for months “or even years.”

I’m ignorant of the tenets governing Islamic law, but less so when it comes to the rights of human beings, and especially journalists, confronting the overwhelming power of the state.

I urge you to release Ms. Saberi. Journalism is a crucial function in the Western democracies. It permits a fully informed populace to make educated decisions about their own government and those of others with whom their countries interact in an interdependent world.

I understand that whatever medieval code you’ve decided to run your own country by probably does not extend the same courtesy to information-seekers, but it is incumbent upon me to inform you of your presence amidst other states and other peoples who conduct themselves more openly and fairly.

Who are you, in the end, to curtail the movements and box in the body and spirit of another human being? Is this something Allah desires? I should think not. What your detention of this journalist demonstrates, dear sir, is that you are running a dictatorship fearful that its own citizens, and those beyond your borders, would be repulsed if fully informed as to its actions.

The only government worth preserving is one that lives in truth. Not one that would jail it.

the highway scribe

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