Education Under Fire

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The right to education, a livelihood, and the chance to be a productive member of society are under attack in Iran. The campaign to eradicate the Baha’i community has been going on for decades, but a fresh wave of persecution has befallen this community.

A documentary named Education Under Fire is a powerful look at the tragic and heroic story of the Baha’i Institute for Higher Education (BIHE), a university that was created in homes when Baha’i students were banned from attending university.

There is a campaign that goes along with the documentary:

“Education Under Fire (EUF) is a campaign developed to address the Iranian government’s denial of the right to education for ideological and religious reasons. Beyond the goal of encouraging specific action in order to mitigate the effects of these policies in Iran, the campaign will begin conversations on university campuses and within communities around the country in order to raise awareness of and shine a light on the importance of defending Article 26 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which guarantees education as an inalienable right of every human being.”

“…The Iranian government also bans students from pursuing higher education if they have expressed views, joined organizations or engaged in activities that are construed as critical of the government. In addition, the authorities have attempted to prevent instruction in several fields in the humanities and social sciences and have dismissed faculty for ideological reasons.”

Nobel Peace Prize laureates, President of East Timor Jose Ramos-Horta and Archbishop Desmond Tutu have raised their voices to write an open letter expressing their shock and dismay at the actions of the Iranian government.

You can participate by starting conversations, looking into the possibility of organizing an event, and talking to the people around you about the human rights violations in Iran. Not only about the Baha’is, but about all of the minority groups that suffer persecution there. We are in this together.

There have already been screenings all over the United States, so contact Education Under Fire to see how you can help.

Sholeh is a founder and Photography Editor of Nineteen Months and takes photos with a Canon Rebel. As a child, she was a master fort builder and mud pie baker. Now she reads books, cooks, and doesn’t try to climb trees. She is a certified event planner. She lives in Chicago with her husband, works as an event manager, and blogs here.