Offbeat

September 25, 2013
Robin Wright             I had breakfast with new Iranian President Hassan Rouhani this morning. He is personable and a striking departure from President Ahmadinejad. He entered the room with presidential flair; he wore a white turban and robes. (I had been early so I had to go through both…
September 23, 2013
            In an all-time first for Iranian diplomacy, new Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif has been chronicling his visit to New York on his Facebook page for Iranians back home. The following translations by USIP's Maral Noori are Zarif's accounts of meetings at the United Nations. Excerpts…
September 6, 2013
            On September 4, President Hassan Rouhani and Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif used Twitter to wish a happy new year to the world’s Jews. “As the sun is about to set here in #Tehran I wish all Jews, especially Iranian Jews, a blessed Rosh Hashanah,” tweeted Rouhani. Iran is home to…
August 30, 2013
      On August 30, Iran's new foreign minister Mohammed Javad Zarif posted an essay on his personal Facebook page strongly condemning the use of chemical weapons in Syria. But he also challenged the international response -- and hypocrisy -- in light of the world's lack of action in the 1980s when…
August 30, 2013
            On August 29, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s office announced the launch of his English language Google Plus account. One of the first postings bemoaned the laziness of Iran’s youth and included a picture of Khamenei walking up a mountain road. Tehran has periodically blocked…
August 20, 2013
Garrett Nada             Faced with few social options or outlets to let off steam, Iran’s young have turned almost fanatically to sports. The first post-revolution generation now includes some world-class athletes—both male and female—as well as millions of diehard sports fans. Iran’s youth…
August 19, 2013
Maral Noori             They have bare forearms! They have shapely legs! They even have daring waistlines! And most of all, they vote!            To understand politics in Iran these days, outsiders also have to understand female fashion. A woman’s right-to-wear was an implicit theme in the…
August 13, 2013
Garrett Nada             Young Iranians are scaling walls, leaping staircases and flipping over benches. But they’re not running from the police. They’re practicing parkour, a blend of gymnastics, martial arts and plain old obstacle-course athletics. Participants are called traceurs, French for…
August 9, 2013
Robin Wright              They’re the determinators—the politically savvy, socially sassy, and media astute young of Iran. And they count, quite literally, as never before as a new president takes over.        President Hassan Rouhani owes his election to the young, who are Iran’s largest voting…
April 23, 2013
Garrett Nada       Their petals are on the national flag. They line the dome above Ayatollah Khomeini’s tomb. They adorn billboards of martyrs from the war with Iraq. They have been depicted on coins and postage stamps. And hotels, parks and restaurants are named after them…