Tajzadeh Free


One of our Iranian readers writes:

Mustafa Taj-Zadeh was released today after 9 months in jail. This guy is a big deal. Breaking him was a personal wish of the highest ranking officials in the coup government. Taj-Zadeh played a major role as deputy interior minister in the first term of Khatami's presidency. He was a champion of  opening up the political process. He oversaw few of the freest elections Iran has seen since in her history. His commitment to fair and free elections in the face of constant harassment of the anti reform forces made him a hero and one of most admired men of Khatami's cabinet.

The conservatives came after him and finally used the judiciary to cook up phony charges and finally forced him out of the office. He then joined Khatami"s brother and other prominent reformist individuals in their party, Mosharekat (Participation front) - the main political party that supported Mousavi. He was famous for taking part in panels and bluntly confronting politicians and destroying them with his directness and detailed knowledge of political history. In his last speech, 4 days before the election, he said: there is only one way Mr. Ahamdi Nejad can win this and that is a coup.

His arrest came hours after the polls were closed, as they wanted him out of the way right from the start. They would have loved for him to break under intolerable conditions, but he resisted. His famous letter to his wife from Evin prison on the anniversary of their marriage became a turning point in breaking the taboo of expressing love to your wife in public. She wrote an open letter back and expressed even more love. It was an amazing moment. Here you have one of Iran's most prominent reformist politicians fighting the interrogators inside the jail and making the bravest political statements and then at the same time taking advantage of this opportunity to break social taboos and advance the cultural and social cause of the Greens as well. All via open love letters to his wife.

To let someone like him go after 9 months is an admission that pressure, torture and detention has miserably failed to break the back of the symbols of the green/reformist movement.

(Photo: Khatami visits Tajzadeh this morning.)