A prominent Iranian political prisoner tells his story from the time of his arrest to his eventual escape a decade later
Dr. Reza Ghaffari was a professor at the University of Tehran until his 1981 arrest for suspicion of being a member of a banned socialist group.This account of his experiences through 10 years of torture and as a witness to?and near victim of?prison massacres offers unparalleled insight into the torturous treatment of political prisoners who oppose the Iranian regime. Nothing written in English or in Persian has so comprehensively and movingly portrayed prison conditions and the strength of those suffering them?not merely a catalogue of atrocities, it is also a tale of triumph for integrity and the human spirit in the face of the utmost degradation. In 1999 the Iranian authorities came looking for Dr. Ghaffari in London and he was moved to a "safe house" by MI6 where he stayed for close to a year. After 9/11, the terrorist threat level in the UK was raised and Dr. Ghaffari was allowed back to his family with greater surveillance on his house. The years of torture have taken their toll on his health but he has refused to be intimidated and is as determined as ever that his story should be told. The fatwah imposed against author Salman Rushdie for writing The Satanic Verses scared many publishers into refusing to print this book, A State of Fear, in English.