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PERSIAN DIARIES I . An Persian-style theocracy and religious fervour : ( Living ) Under Chador .

Rpnunyez . | Iran

Iran, a paradigm of modern theocracy, lives under the long shadow of the man who in 1979 returned from exile in Paris to end years of waste, corruption and terror of the Pahlevi dynasty by establishing the Islamic Republic of Iran.

When, on February 1, 1979, the Iranian people welcomed Khomeini's return with genuine jubilation, they did nothing but express their hope for a more dignified life and, perhaps, for the recovery of a lost identity.

It is, however, paradoxical that the children of those who kissed the shoes of Rheza Pahlevi, the last Shah of Persia, or of those who tore down one after another the hundreds of effigies of him spread all over the country, must today live under the thousands of portraits of Ruhollah Mousavi Khomeini or his successor in office that flood today's Iran.

An Iran in which the chador, an element of oppression for some and liberating for others, is omnipresent and represents by itself the enormous complexity and contradictions of the present Iranian regime.

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