On radio this morning, Glenn read a powerful letter by a dissident being held in an Iranian prison. The letter was addressed to President Obama - but did anyone in the White House read it? Glenn not only read it, but was moved to share it with listeners all over the country to remind them what America used to stand for.
The letter reads:
February 6th , 2015
Gohardasht Prison, Karadj. Iran
Honorable Barak Hussein Obama
President of the United States of America
1600 Pennsylvania Ave
Washington, D.C. United States of America
Dear Mr. President:
Without human rights and democracy there will never be a lasting peace and security in the world. Please allow me to speak as a prisoner of conscious and a journalist opposed to the Islamic religion cleric's rule over my homeland Iran.
I was one of the student leaders who was considered to be an architect of a student uprising on July 9, 1999, by the regime. That was an uprising that was a true turning point in the movement for democracy. We wanted change of regime because our calls for reform had proven ineffective. And so I spent six years in the notorious Evin prison. Two of those years were in solitary confinement. I was freed but rearrested and imprisoned again, and again.
Over five years ago when the people of Iran were asking you to support them against the tyranny of the Shia clerics, you, as the president of the most powerful country on earth, were secretly writing letters to the dictator of Iran.
In 2009 while Khamenei was ordering the suppression of the people to his paramilitary forces, killing the people on the streets and the university campuses, imprisoning and torturing
journalists, intellectuals, the young and the old mercilessly, your friendly communications to the tyrant of Iran continued in the name of the people of the United States, ignoring the human rights of the people of Iran. You helped Khamenei to continue his Islamic tyranny in the name of Allah and Islam.
During our 2009 uprising, I saw untold crimes against humanity committed against the people of Iran. I saw a woman in her late 20s get kicked so hard in her spine that she flew through the air. On Ghods Street, near Tehran University, I saw another young woman as her head was pounded into a car by the basij paramilitary forces. All the while, they screamed disgusting epithets like "whore" and worse.
Mr. President; the people of Iran are not backward fascists nor fanatic religionists as the ruling Islamic clergies are. When the day comes that the boots of the tyranny is lifted off our neck, it will be proven that Iranians are capable of handling democracy, secularism and social justice.
Mr. President; all we want is to be a part of the international community, we want to be a free democratic people, master of our own destiny, live in Pease and prosperity, and be the decision makers for our homeland. We oppose nuclear bomb and the militaristic arrogance of the ruling cleric regime. If the international community wants peace in the Middle East, support the People of Iran not the tyrants.
The Islamic clerics have taken our nation hostage to their fanatical Islamic tyranny. In 2009 when the people of Iran loudly and clearly asked for your support for their freedom and sovereignty, you ignored us and empowered the tyrants to imprison, torture and kill us.
Mr. President; I have the honor of being the cellmate of a good American, Pastor Saeed Abedini. I heard that you met with the wife and children of my cellmate, that his son, little Jacob asked you to help release his father for his birthday, however, you have refused to demand the release of the hostage Abedini from the old tyrant Khamenei.
You claim that the only choice that you have is either make a deal with Khamenei, may I say- to surrender to him- or "war". May I dare to say that this claim is a form of misinformation, and intimidation of the people of America?
Mr. President; we Iranian people submit to you and the people of the world that there is another way. Please Sanction and weaken the illegal regime of Khamenei, and empower the people to overthrow the tyranny. You know that you can support the people in many ways such as giving us internet communication access that the Khamenei regim cannot police and allow us to organize and rise up against these godless tyrants.
No tyranny will last forever, but the nations will always be there and history will judge. Help us to overthrow this tyranny and become a free and democratic member of the international community and a friend of the United States.
Journalist, prisoner of conscious
Here's how Glenn reacted: