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Posts tagged: Iran


Just returned from seeing the new movie Argo. Ben Affleck directs  the story of the CIA-assisted escape of six Americans hiding in Iran at the home of a Canadian diplomat; the six American consular officials slipped out of the American Embassy in Tehran on November 4, 1979 as it was overrun by militant students. The remaining 52 Americans were held hostage.  

The movie is based on the book written by retired CIA operative Antonio Mendez and journalist Matt Baglio. Ben Affleck plays Mendez. The film uses actual news footage and ends with comments from President Jimmy Carter.

For some viewers, the film -which does take artistic license with details -  is a before-my-lifetime history lesson, but for many who vividly recall this event, the movie reveals one now-declassified story from that horrible violence which lasted 444 days for the Americans left behind.  

President Clinton declassified the information in 1997.  Argo is a story worth telling – a story of immense courage, hope and redemptive imagination.

(S-R archives photo: Former Iranian secret agent Saeed Hajjarian points to a copy of a photograph showing a U.S. hostage and an Iranian during the 1979 seizure of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran.)

Coming home

After two years in a Tehran prison, two Americans are headed for home after $500,000 bail for each man was posted. 

Shane Bauer and Josh Fattal were arrested along the Iran-Iraq border in July 2009 and sentenced last month to eight years each in prison. A third American arrested with them, Sarah Shourd, was freed last year on bail. The three were hiking in northern Iraq’s scenic and relatively peaceful Kurdish region when they may have accidentally strayed over the unmarked border with Iran.

They were imprisoned and accused of being spies. During their time in captivity, Bauer proposed marriage to Shourd. She was released last September.

If you were imprisoned, what would you think about to keep your mind focused and your heart/emotions strong?

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Writer Catherine Johnston of Olympia, Wash., addresses issues facing aging baby boomers and seniors as well as issues of serious illness, death and dying, grief and loss.

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