A Persian Amsterdammer Blogs.

Tuesday, 30 June 2009

Comic relief

There you have it ladies and gents, here's your vote:

Thursday, 25 June 2009

Oldest instrument found

After all the depressing news I need something nice every once in a while. Here's a message that cheers me up:

Human beings were making music as early as 35.000 years ago. Furthermore, music might have been why we outlived the stronger Neanderthals, through music we socialized much more. That's my answer from now on to any religious nutter who thinks music comes from the devil:


Here's some intense flute playing that really goes nuts (especially in the middle part)

Tuesday, 23 June 2009

New blog

De Groene Amsterdammer (The Green Amsterdammer) is a great periodical, writing intelligently about politics, culture and society.

They have opened a blog for me to contribute to their site with articles about Iran. It will go live tomorrow, but here's a sneak preview:


Sadly only in Dutch, but I might translate some of the posts later. Spread the word!

Sunday, 21 June 2009


It seems now that the rumours were untrue. My bad to publish rumours before they're confirmed as fact. At any rate, a strike in the current situation wouldn't be so bad anyway.

Mousavi arrested?

I don't want to spread rumours, but I've heard from certain people that Mousavi and his wife might have been arrested. Again, please don't take this for a fact, but if it's true, then he asked the people to strike!

Pictures of Sadness and Hope

In Amsterdam we held a candle light vigil last night, in memory of all the fallen brothers and sisters. The video here doesn't do full justice to the beautiful, sad and magical atmosphere of the night. If you don't read Persian, ignore the text and click on the video:


Here's a Time photo essay of the people who are struggling. It's a painful detail that the man who took these pictures is now missing:


Saturday, 20 June 2009


Here's a great source for documentary makers:


I am sure we will need many to cover everything that's happening in Iran right now. Mousavi has said he is ready for martyrdom. Today is a very very sad day.

James Longley

James Longley speaks from Teheran in this interview:


Friday, 19 June 2009

Pirates join the fight!!

How can we lose the fight if even pirates are on our side? The famed hacker-nerds of the Pirate Bay have renamed themselves Persian Bay in support of the people of Iran:

remember the old black logo with the skull and bones? look at their logo now:


Now, for some comic distraction. This is great if you speak Persian. Otherwise, here's it's just a rap with a nice flow:

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

Keyhan shenanigans

Keyhan used to be a wellrespected newspaper in Iran. After the revolution it was seized by the government (though some of the editors coninue an exile version of the paper from London). Now it often posts questionable news.

Here is a picture of the Pro Ahmadinejad rally. Notice how it was photoshopped to make it seem more people actually showed up:


(you have to copy-paste the link, not sure why this workstation doesn't turn it into a link)

Here's some reasons why election might have been fraudulent:

Tuesday, 16 June 2009


This is great news!

Baseej buildings under attack

Following Twitter is a tricky business: it's hard to differentiate between fact and rumour. But it seems to be confirmed that today:

A) there is a general strike. Large parts of the Bazars have been closed.
B) there will be another march, though Mousavi will not attend today.
C) A Baseej center in Tabriz has been attacked (yesterday one in Tehran was molotovd).

The Baseej are the people's militia (though everyone knows they have ties to the government) who fought in the Iran Iraq war and now attack people who defy the Islamic laws. After 30 years of abuse it seems they are starting to become a target for the people who at the moment are still too afraid to attack government officials.

Next demonstration in the Netherlands will be Thursday in the Hague.


Here's a song by Waldemar Bastos, who laments the pain and suffering in Angola (during and after the heinous civil war). It's to remind us we are not alone in suffering:

Monday, 15 June 2009

Revolution News

Tomorrow there is a nationwide strike in Iran. Pass it on!

Also check out developments on:


Read about documentary filmmaker James Longley's detention here:


Online Petition

And here is the petition to sign:


Let's get this vote back!

Sunday, 14 June 2009

Election Madness

Iran is going nuts. I will post some thoughts soon, but in the mean time here are some essential links:

Articles about what's happening:


Good resources for English language news:


Thursday, 11 June 2009

Caspian Hat Dance

Remember the funky Gypsy-Klezmer-Chaos-Tambourine band I used to play in? Well... the violinist just had a baby. And they're heading off to Rumania, Hungary and the US. If you want to catch them play before they leave it would be wise to visit their show in the Badkuyp this Saturday.

In the meantime read the official Caspian travel report of their last tour in the UK:
(Just so you know, most likely they don't know anyone named Fiona or Mabel)


Our trip to England was smashing indeed.

After we arrived in Dover we encountered MABEL having a chat and a visit
with FIONA at the latter's house, where we joined them for some CUSTARD PIE

We went on to Oxford where we played a show with the bloke and bird from
EXPERIMENTAL DENTAL SCHOOL. Later on we went home and did a smash-up job
making some badges with a rangle-tangle new BADGE MACHINE.

SILVI remained in Amsterdam, waiting for her wee lad to swim out of her
belly and into his life.*

MISTER JOSEPH perfected a new form of rhyming slang so complicated that we
couldn't communicate with him any more.

FISH wanted to head to Scotland Yard for a cup of tea with the INSPECTOR and
discuss clues in the ORIENT EXPRESS murder case. We had to remind him that
Scotland Yard was closed on Sunday, that the Orient Express case was solved
long ago and was in any case NOT REAL, and that if he kept staying stupid
things we would put him straight in the BADGE MACHINE for a nice mash-up and

In Brighton we were quite busy playing and dandying about. There was no time
even for the old in-out, as we spent most of our free time taking turns
standing in a patch of sunshine.

Cowbell said, "Have we enjoyed ourselves, lads?"
"We most certainly have, luv!", said Valentine.
"See crash willy crystal not on the ROCKS, eh?", said Mister Joseph.
"Bugger me sideways, he's gone off again", added Goblin. "Perhaps we should
have a dip in the pond".

And despite water cold enough to freeze the bollocks off a Boer, we managed
to have a refreshing drip drip and splash-about.

* Olín Guillermo, born last week, healthy & rosy.

Wednesday, 10 June 2009

Meanwhile in Israel...

... some frat boys (and girl) have an opinion too:

Monday, 8 June 2009


I'm glad storytelling is making a come back in the Netherlands. More and more storytelling circles are popping up and festivals are being organised. Make sure to write down the following dates in your planner.

If you live in Amsterdam drop in at the Mezrab on the first Friday of the month for some Dutch storytelling or the third Friday of the month for English storytelling. In October you can visit the storytelling festival: http://www.storytellingfestival.nl/

In Zwolle storytelling takes place in a boat: http://www.deverhalenboot.nl/

In Rotterdam the Storyfountain organises not one but two storynights: http://www.verhalenfontein.com/

I'll keep you guys updated about events in other cities!

Friday, 5 June 2009

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Arab campaign for Kurdish rights

This is great, an Arab campaign for Kurdish rights. For people who are not so knowledgable of the Middle East. The Kurds are Indo-Germanic people who mostly live in Turkey, Iran and Arab Syria and Iraq. I think it's amazing that another ethnic and cultural group has organised a campaign for their rights: