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My thoughts are with Roxana Saberi, Iranian American journalist who was convicted of espionage today in Tehran. My thoughts are also with many more Iranian journalists who have been imprisoned in Iran in the past few years. A journalist friend was wondering today why no Iranian journalist has done an independent investigation about the whereabouts of Roxana in the past 6 years that she has been working and living in Iran. I was thinking that in the state of such fear and suppression, you can’t expect anybody to do real investigative journalism in Iran. (Not that there isn’t any good investigative journalism in Iran. Of course there are still many vigorous and courageous journalists in Iran that do good investigative work, but there aren’t many media outlets to publish uncensored challenging stories.) That’s why many Iranian journalists like me work for foreign-funded Iranian media outlets in diaspora. But we can’t do the real thing much either, since we are not there, in the field, to do our job. We sit in our offices outside of Iran and try to play the ropes to produce stories about Iran. We should be careful not to put people’s lives in danger in Iran for contacting us. And here is just part of the sad story of Iranian journalism.
Tonight I also couldn’t get the thought of Zahra Kazemi and Daniel Pearl out of my head. I just hope that one day we will see a world where no journalist is imprisoned, tortured, or killed for doing her job.