October 8th, 2012
On this date in 1982, Khosrow Khan Qashqai was publicly hanged in Shiraz.
A member of the pastoral Turkic Qashqai people of southern Iran, Khosrow returned from exile* with the Iranian revolution. These were the revolution’s hopeful first days, when SAVAK was gone and a new world was possible.
Before it went all pear-shaped.
Not long after Khosrow’s constituents sent him to the new Iran’s new Parliament, relations with the emerging theocratic dictatorship soured, sending the Qashqai leader fleeing to the hills one step ahead of the new secret police in 1980.
Khosrow et al held out for two years before succumbing to Iran’s Revolutionary Guards — a grim period throughout Iran, marked by growing suppression of political dissidence and the ruinous war with neighboring Iraq.
Thirty years on, Qashqai still labor under discriminatory cultural restrictions and even property expropriation that the U.N. has charged constitutes a campaign of “ethnic restructuring”.
* The Shah kicked him out for having backed Mossadegh.
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Entry Filed under: 20th Century,Capital Punishment,Death Penalty,Execution,Hanged,Iran,Politicians,Power,Public Executions
Tags: 1980s, 1982, ayatollah khomeini, iranian revolution, khosrow khan qashqai
December 8th, 2009
This was the date in 1982 of the “December murders” (“Decembermoorden”), when 15 opponents of Suriname’s military dictatorship were shot at Fort Zeelandia.
(The 15 people shot each have an entry on the Dutch Wikipedia, accessible through its Decembermoorden entry.)
Though the killings weren’t secret at the time, their circumstances have always been murky, beyond the plain fact of being murders of political dissidents — “counterrevolutionaries,” in the parlance of the “Socialist Republic”.
President Desi Bouterse had seized power in a coup in early 1980, and some of the casualties this day might have been suspected of plotting to pull the same trick on him: at least, several were made to read statements to that effect. Others were regime opponents of a less existential menace: dissident university professors; critical journalists; a prominent former footballer. (When in Paramaribo, take in a match at Andre Kamperveen Stadion, which is named for him.)
Bouterse took political responsibility for the slaughter while claiming not to have ordered it. But it’s long been said that Bouterse was actually present for the shootings, personally interviewing/interrogating/”judging” the prisoners. (That’s what the massacre’s lone survivor, the since-deceased Fred Derby, said. (Dutch link))
Decades later, Bouterse — now an ex-dictator — is finally facing trial for the December murders, including fresh evidence of his involvement in the day’s notorious affair.
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Entry Filed under: 20th Century,Activists,Athletes,Businessmen,Capital Punishment,Death Penalty,Execution,History,Intellectuals,Lawyers,Mass Executions,No Formal Charge,Notable Participants,Politicians,Power,Ripped from the Headlines,Shot,Soldiers,Summary Executions,Suriname,Torture,Treason,Wrongful Executions
Tags: 1980s, 1982, andre kamperveen, december 8, december murders, desi bouterse, fred derby, paramaribo