Ayeda Alavie Burned Generation

My generation calls itself burned. The Islamic Revolution has fundamentally destroyed our lives. Since the murder of Jina Mahsa Amini, we have been communicating from all around the world via social media. Not a day goes by since Mahsa's murder that we don't discuss the consequences of the Islamic Revolution. In our eyes, Mahsa would still be alive in an Iran without the Islamic Revolution. The systematic deprivation of rights of women in Iran began in 1979 with the Islamic Revolution.

My generation and the subsequent ones had nothing to do with the 1979 revolution, yet we have to bear the consequences throughout our lives. The revolutionaries of that time were against imperialism, capitalism, materialism, and for Islam or communism. Therefore, they wanted to overthrow the monarchy. In their ideology, Islam and Marx were holier then the land of Iran. They desired an Islamic-Marxist government that had no relationship with the USA and Israel. Hence, immediately after the revolution, the embassies of the USA and Israel in Tehran were seized. Intellectual students and armed revolutionaries took 52 US diplomats as hostages, aiming to pressure the extradition of Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. Subsequently, numerous anti-revolutionaries, high-ranking officers, and innocent people who had held positions during the Shah's era were executed. These victims had neither lawyers nor enough time to defend themselves.

And everyone witnessed this: Right after the victory of the Islamic Revolution, the global community saw that the revolutionaries imposed themselves with violence, hostage-taking, executions, and terror. Yet, for 44 years, the world has negotiated with this regime of terror.

This continues to the present day: Last year, the global community saw many videos proving how brutally and inhumanely unarmed demonstrators were treated after Mahsa Amini's murder. Four years ago, the world clearly witnessed that in November 2019, over 1500 demonstrators, mainly protesting for economic reasons, were killed. Nevertheless, politicians from around the world continued to shake hands with the Mullahs. The world turned a blind eye to human rights violations in Iran. The same world that supported Khomeini in 1979 and, with the help of internal political unrest in Iran, toppled the Shah of Persia. Since then, there has been no peace in the Middle East, with human rights abuses, war, and growing terrorism. The funds from oil sales, which should be used for Iran's development and its people, are invested in Hamas in Gaza and the West Bank, Hezbollah in Lebanon, the Houthi in Yemen, and other terrorist groups in the region. While there is no middle class in Iran anymore, many people, out of desperation and poverty, take their own lives or sell their organs, the regime in Tehran, hostile to humanity and Iran, invests all resources in spreading fear and terror in the Middle East. And politicians from around the world continue to negotiate with this regime.

While we, the people of Iran, suffer the consequences of the Islamic Revolution, many of the revolutionaries who fought against imperialism and capitalism at that time have been living with their families in the USA or other capitalist countries since 1979. And those who still live in Iran are now among the richest and most powerful people in Iran. We demand an official statement from these revolutionaries of the 70s, who have destroyed our lives and our future with their unnecessary and treacherous revolution. Especially the countries that supported Khomeini in the 70s and thoughtlessly overthrew the Shah should finally help the people of Iran in their current revolution against the Mullah regime.

Since Mahsa's murder, we have been writing: anonymously on social media, inside and outside Iran. It feels like a virtual support group consisting of millions of people. People with a single shared suffering and a common wish.

We mourn Mahsa Amini, Hadis Najafi, Nika Schakarami, Sarina Esmailzadeh, Khodanur Lagai, the hundreds of people killed in Zahedan who lived without birth certificates and thus without rights to a normal life. For the 10-year-old Kian Pirfalak, who gave God a new name by speaking "in the name of the rainbow god." For the executed young men, for the 1500 people killed in the November protests of 2019. For Navid Afkari, Pouya Bakhtiari, Sattar Beheshti, Neda Agha Soltan, for Armita Geravand. The list of names is long, and it keeps getting longer if we do nothing about it.

We mourn the unlived life of our generation. We mourn for real people. We wish for a humane life. A normal, simple, free life. A life for life on Earth, not for an idea, like the intellectual revolutionaries of the 70s. The current revolution in Iran has human goals. It is grounded. Brave people on the streets do not praise God or ideologies, neither Marx nor Lenin.

Mahsa Amini's name is and remains the code of our revolution. We tweet and retweet revolutionary slogans like "After Mahsa, everything hangs by a thread" thousands of times. We express our protest worldwide with the hashtag:



So far, we have written Mahsa_Amini at least a hundred million times.

We women search in forbidden old books and documents for our recent history, which is not found in manipulated books. We realize that the entire "Woman, Life, Freedom" movement would not have been necessary if the rights granted to us Iranian women over 60 years ago by the "White Revolution" had not been destroyed: the right to vote, the right to divorce, the right to abortion, and many other valuable rights. We were treated with dignity as women at that time. However, these valuable rights were taken away from us by the revolutionaries in 1979. The Islamic Revolution further deprived us by having Khomeini take away the old right to free elections and even the right to free clothing, where one could choose to wear the headscarf or not. "What has your Islamic Revolution brought us?" we ask the former revolutionaries, who still try to justify their Islamic Revolution in their books and speeches. At present, there is a parallel struggle against the regime and a generational struggle among us.

And we should not ask the older generations, "What has your Islamic Revolution brought us?" but rather, "What has your Islamic Revolution left us with?" Meanwhile, the inhumanity of the regime continues: Instead of floral wreaths, our athletes receive the hangman's noose. Athletes like Navid Afkari, Seyed Mohammad Hosseini, and many others. The suffering grows unimaginable. The methods become more insidious: Masked armed men storm out of Bastani-Mihan trucks that normally transport ice cream. They shoot at the demonstrators or drag the injured into the ice cream trucks. This crime, like many others, is filmed with mobile phones and posted online. Ambulances drive through the crowd, and masked individuals jump out of them. The injured can no longer be treated in hospitals because they are even abducted by masked individuals there.

The state television claims that the masked individuals are "fake police." This is bitter irony: As far as I can remember, the police has always been fake. The police were there for intimidation, kidnapping, and torture. Since the Islamic Revolution, everything has been fake: a fake life, a fake homeland, a fake God. Only death was not fake. Regardless of the time, we live in a constant, cruel night. Like in a horror movie with masked murderers. This horror should finally stop.

When I cook Scholezard for the killed, I think of the hundreds of victims of the Mahsa Revolution. Of the executed people like Seyed Mohammad Hosseini. He had no first-degree family to bury his body after his execution. Until the end, like all the others executed, he reminded everyone that he was innocent. Nevertheless, he was also executed for "waging war against God." I cook this Persian, sweet, yellow dish made of rice, water, sugar, saffron, and pistachios for his peace of mind. His soul should feel this dish. After his execution, we all became his first-degree family. Iran is his first-degree family. I distribute the finished dish in different bowls and write the names of the killed on them with cinnamon. Before the Islamic Revolution, people in Iran wrote the names of saints on the sweet dish: Imams whom none of us had ever seen. Now we write the names of people we know. People who courageously risk their lives for a free, dignified life in Iran.