Maziar Bahari’s Detention

Newsweek recently published a fascinating article by Iranian journalist Maziar Bahari in which he details his imprisonment and interrogation by the Revolutionary Guards, Iran’s elite security organization (http://www.newsweek.com/id/223862/page/1).  Among the most interesting revelations are: his interrogators’ belief that his faux interview with Jason Jones, a correspondent for the satirical Daily Show who the Guards believe is an American spy, was real; his main interrogator’s obsession with New Jersey; Ayatollah Khamenei’s belief that there is a “cultural NATO” network comprised of journalists, activists, scholars and lawyers who are trying to bring down the Iranian regime at the behest of Western powers; the Guards’ disdain for the clerical establishment; the ascension of the Guards as a political force; skewed Iranian assumptions about Western sexual mores, including the prevalence of orgies, free love and anonymous sexual encounters; the fact that international pressure to free Mr. Bahari was effective; and the high level of paranoia about the West felt by Iranian leaders.

I highly recommend this article to anyone who is interested in the political situation in Iran and the attitudes of hardcore militants there.

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