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I am impressed by the good research you have done.


I'm sure the HRC will do what it historically does best—namely write an indignant press release condemning the boy's execution—after his body is cut down.

And then they will make an appeal for donations so they can continue their important work of writing indignant press releases...oh and throwing really swell fundraising galas. I really do believe that gay people will be the first oppressed people to dine and dance their way to equality.


I appreciate your kind words, Kamangir. I'm hoping we can get the word out, because too many gays in America are concerned only with what happens to them, not to their brothers and sisters around the world.


I feel like I am in a tough spot here ( between Iraq and a hard place).
On the one hand, I am dismayed by the plight of Makwan Moloudzadeh(G-d bless copy paste). If I thought my protests would help him with the Iranian Government, then I would be the first to speak up.
On the other hand, I don't want to assist those in this country who would nuke Iran. A nuclear strike on Iran would kill a lot more 14 year olds.
Also, I suspect protests from decadent American bloggers would only serve to encourage the Persian hangman.
The reaction to this affair in this country is interesting in another way. The wingnuts of the right have little to say about this. While it would look bad for Iran, it would also put them in the position of appearing to condone homosexuality.
It reminds me of the reaction to Chernoble (sp). This was a case where the Soviets seriously messed up, but the right wing in this country was slow to condemn it. They were on the payroll of the nuclear industry, and had to choose who they were going to offend.


Gotta say I'm not buying your reasons to say nothing. We can't stop the Iranian government from acting, and the U.S. govt is not going to bomb Iran just to save gay people. But gay Iranians need to know someone is on their side, at least rhetorically. It may not matter much, but it's important, and it's even more important that the gay establishment country realize there's gay people outside of this country who are really suffering. In comparison, gay people here are merely inconvenienced. Not a word from the PQE? Inexcusable, and shameful.


Whoops, typo. That is to say, "it's even more important that the queer establishment within the U.S. realizes there's gay people outside of this country who are truly suffering."


Less than 24 hours, and I am going to agree with you again. This makes me angry and disgusts me that our own "HUMAN" rights organizations aren't concerned in the least.

Shame on us. There is no point in gaining freedom for gays and lesbians unless we can do it for all of us worldwide. Shame on us big time.

I saw this mentioned in slight on towleroad.com, but I appreciate a more in-depth report. I will be blogging this today.


This is getting scary. Glad you're going to mention it, though. We won't change Iranian policy, but gettng the word out never hurts, particularly if some gay Iranian kid stumbles upon a blog and at least knows he's not forgotten. Of course if he was caught reading either of our blogs he'd probably be flogged.


I just can't help but think that people don't care because he is Iranian, and therefore, somehow our enemy. That thought really scares me.


I don't think it's that -- I think it's more a tendency of our community to look inward too much. There's certainly inequalities in America, but they pale in comparison to the treatment gay people receive in theocracies like Iran.


My blog is fairly self-obsessed, but I'll find a way to work it in to a post I'm doing today, if that helps.


Much appreciated.

It's a very small scale, but emblematic of the positve reach bloggers can have.


The headline of this piece is not accurate. Mr. Moloudzaden is 21, not 14.
The alleged rape occured in 1999, when both Mr. Moloudzadeh and the reputed victim were 13.
Now, this raises all sorts of questions, which go above and beyond the (fairly certain) mistreatment of Gays in Iran...even when Mr. Ahmadinejad's translator said these peeps don't exist.
To execute someone eight years after the fact,for a crime committed at age 13, is pretty outrageous. Even for a rowdy regime like the one in charge in Iran.
I suspect there is something about this we are not being told. Is Mr. Moloudzadeh a dissident, or the relative of dissidents? Is he accused of something else? Why would a government pull a charge like that out of the archives?
If there is more to this story, then it does not speak well for Amnesty International to be publicizing it. Maybe they are the organization that needs a bit of scrutiny.
Maybe they are trying to curry favor with the Government in Washington. There is little doubt that some elements of our government would like to see military action against Iran. We are in a pre war phase, where one of the goals is to create ill will against the enemy du jour. While it is true that our government will not nuke Iran to save gays ( We destroyed that village to save it), stories like this will create ill will against the government there, and could, in the long run, contribute to military action against Iran. And yes, this action would kill a lot of civilians.
If we really want to help the gays in Iran, maybe we should insure that Amnesty International is not exploiting them for their own purposes.


Where's your information coming from? And your contention that Amnesty is trying to curry favor with the Bush Administration is one of the more farcical charges I've ever heard. I need facts, I'll check 'em, but at the end of the day I'm certainly going to believe Amnesty over the Iranian government. They both have track records. I can only hope you wouldn't trust Ahmadinjead over a respected human rights organization.


"and beyond the (fairly certain) mistreatment of gays in Iran" ... give me a fucking break. It's beyond mistreatment, and it's beyond certain.


My facts are coming from the Amnesty post that was linked in your post.
"I can only hope you wouldn't trust Ahmadinjead over a respected human rights organization" Has the Iranian Government spoken about this case? There is no indication of this in either the Amnesty nor the Kamangir post. (Kamangir, btw, has a pop up ad that gets through my normally effective popup filter)
Now, the suspicions about Amnesty are a bit far out, I admit. Still, I wonder why the Iranian government would pull a case like this out of the archive, unless there are other charges. And if there are, then Amnesty should be reporting them.
Maybe I am more cynical, but I don't consider Amnesty to be above suspicion. The fact that the other players in this drama are the Governments in Tehran and Washington do not make Amnesty any more perfect.
And I do stand by my original statement. Mr. Moloudzadeh is 21, not 14. And the case does make the Iranian government look very bad.


I should've been more careful. You're right, he's 21 now, but the facts of the case don't change. More facts are required, but I'm not crazy about your insinuations.

George Harvey

Hello, I stumbled across this page while researching a few past Amnesty International Campaigns.

I am with Amnesty International and would like to respond to both your blog and to the comments made by "Chamblee 54".

Makwan Moloudzadeh was in fact, 13 at the time of his alleged "rape". An interesting thing about the Iranian judicial system is that homosexuality and the act of "anal sex" in particular is punishable by death. Typically, individuals who are caught plead that they were raped in order to avoid execution.

In Makwan's case the witnesses later came forward and admitted that their testimony was administered under "duress". They were tortured and coerced to testify against Makwan.

The Supreme Court of Iran refuted Makwan's death sentence, in what many described as a small victory for human rights. However, the local courts decided to ignore this and executed Makwan in private without informing his family.

He was twenty at the time of incarceration and twenty one at the time of execution. This is probably where the confusion lies as to what his age was.

As far as Amnesty jockeying for favour within the current administration in Washington, Amnesty's policies prevent it from accepting monies from any government, corporation or religious group. Furthermore, locals are prohibited from campaigning for or against their own countries (except in some extreme circumstances), making Amnesty completely impartial. Amnesty has spoken against the Bush administration many times. It is our view that no one is immune to scrutiny over human rights violations.

I do agree with one thing that "Chamblee54" has said. Please feel free to scrutinize Amnesty as much as you would like. It is essential that one educates themselves about an issue before harbouring such strong opinions.

In any regard, it was nice of you to post about Makwan. His story will continue to inspire activism throughout the world. May his family find sollace in that.

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