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By Mehran Rafiei

In 2006, Mehran Rafiei, a Persian Aussie, takes a solo vacation in New Zealand. His journey coincides with Nowruz, the Persian New 12 months, and conjures up a flood of pleased thoughts of his adolescence in Abadan within the Nineteen Fifties. As he excursions the recognized vacationer hotspots, he engages eagerly with fellow guests and locals, sharing impressions and tales.
Every occasion and dialog triggers a reminiscence of his place of origin and he's decided to catch his personal tale. His memoir is an insightful, deeply relocating and infrequently funny own account of the Iran he knew and was once pressured to escape.
Through his eyes, we see the Oil Nationalisation rebellion and consequent CIA-backed coup d’état which adjustments the center East for ever. From his exile, Khomeini delivers justice, freedom, and loose public providers. The authoritarian Shah flees in another country in January 1979, and weeks later, an alien creature is born: the Islamic Republic of Iran.
Overnight, merciless mullahs expand their grip on strength – and the crooks leap at the bandwagon. The state suffers shortages, inflation, unemployment, unpredictable executions, and non secular and racial discrimination.
The challenge intensifies whilst Iraq invades in1980. The Cultural Revolution disqualifies Mehran and his spouse from educating positions. Their rented flat in Shiraz is confiscated; a brand new neighbour strikes in: an anti-Saddam armed forces employer. His domestic turns into an enticing aim for enemy sabotage, so he reveals shelter of their kinfolk farm in Kazeroon. The political and ethical destruction of a country is advised warmly via human tales as households attempt to make the simplest of existence – matchmaking, weddings, friendships, enterprise offers – and braveness shines in the course of the worst moments.
Mehran’s certain tale of eventually getting a migration visa from the Australian Embassy in Tehran exhibits extra grotesque realities of warfare and the plight of asylum seekers – a narrative extra suitable this present day than ever.

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A Persian Odyssey by Mehran Rafiei


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