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most Azerbaijanis in Iran referred to themselves as Turks. .. 12 Zehtabi, Iran Turklerinin Eski Tarixi; Heyat, “Regression of Azeri Language.” 13 E.M. 3 M.T. Zehtabi, Iran Turklerinin Eski Tarixi. Ikinci chap (Tebriz: Artun, ). 4 Rahim Rayees-Nia, Azerbaijan dar Seir-e Tarikh-e Iran, 2 vols. (Tabriz: Nima. compared with more than 20 million Azeris in Iran. The two from northwestern Iran to the Caspian Sea in the east M.T. Zehtabi, Iran Turklerinin Eski Tarixi.

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Alireza Asgharzadeh The rise of European fascism and the concomitant breakout of what came to be known as the Second World War changed the balance of forces all over the globe. Es,i totalitarian and dictatorial regimes in Europe as well as in various parts of Asia, Africa and the Middle East had to remobilize their forces and focus their attention to the external threat posed by the war. Response to outside threat relaxed the repressive conditions inside and provided favorable climate for oppressed nationalities and groups to assert their tutklerinin social, economic and political rights.

The oppressed and marginalized peoples of Azerbaijan and Kurdistan were among various Iranian nationalities and groups that ira notice of the opportunity provided by the war and sought to implement their legitimate social, cultural and national demands.

At the beginning of the war inIran was ruled under Turklerinun Shah Pahlavi, a military dictator brought to power by a British engineered coup d’etat in Throughout his military career as a Cossack trooper, Reza Khan had never hidden his hatred for non-Persian Iranians. Now in full control over the destiny of the people, he had all the resources at his disposal to rski his racist ideology. Despite his well-known pro-Nazi tendencies, Reza Khan, under pressure from the Soviets and the British, declared Iran’s neutrality.

However, he made no serious attempt to restrict the activities of pro-German and pro-Nazi elements. Soon after, the Soviet and British diplomatic missions in Tehran demanded the expulsion of a large number of Jran, accusing the Iranian government of sheltering a German fifth irzn see also Lenczowski, On August 25,Soviets from the north and the British from the south invaded Iran. On the following morning, September 17, the British and Soviet forces entered Tehran. The United States of America’s non-combat forces arrived in see also Lenczowski, While the ruling elite and highly privileged military personnel lamented the changes, masses of the taeixi welcomed weakening of the centralized authority and began to enjoy the new political atmosphere.

The presence of the Red Army in northern Iran paralyzed the Pahlavi regime’s military machine, and thereby, greatly contributed to the celebration of new social, political, and cultural landscape.

Soon, pamphlets and magazines began to circulate in Azeri language, accompanied by hitherto forbidden folkloric songs, dances, literary gatherings, wearing of indigenous clothing, and so forth. On 12 December,the Azerbaijani provinces declared their iiran and formed the Azerbaijan Democratic Government. Azerbaycan Demokrat Firqesi the Democratic Party of Azerbaijan or ADP played a pivotal role in redirecting the revolutionary demands and sentiments of Azerbaijani people. A month later, on February 12, a Kurdish Republic was formed in the neighboring Kurdistan, declaring the city of Mahabad as its capital.

Based on their mutual agreement, the allied forces were to leave Iran by March 2, The British left southern Iran by the deadline; the Russians stayed in the north. The Iranian regime took the matter to the newly founded United Nations. The conflict became internationalized, and as some have argued, it came to mark the beginning of the cold war Fawcett ; Atabaki In May the Soviet forces left Iran.

Facing no mentionable resistance, the Shah’s army invaded Azerbaijan and savagely massacred its people see also Douglas ; JAMI After suppression of Azerbaijan, the neighboring Kurdish Republic was brutally attacked and conquered. Throughout both Republics, all the buildings belonging to National Governments, along with houses, crops, and newly constructed schools and universities were set on fire. Mass executions of participants, sympathizers, and those suspected of sympathizing with the national movements were performed in public, followed by the burning of books, magazines and pamphlets published in ethnic languages.

The invading army stayed in Azerbaijan for five years, continuing the persecution of ADP supporters. After five years the Shah declared national amnesty in Azerbaijan and the military rule was lifted. Irrespective of the so-called amnesty, the Persian racist propaganda, along with a fascistic campaign against the democratic movements, continued.


The 12th of the December, the day of occupation, was commemorated as a national holiday and was celebrated in all government offices, schools and streets. In the yearthe Pahlavi dynasty was overthrown and, subsequently, the Islamic Republic was formed. With the fall of the Shah, his sponsored Persian racism was, for a short time, overshadowed by a ‘supposedly anti-racist’, universalistic Islamic ideology of the new rulers.

In the revolutionary atmosphere of the time, various nationalistic demands and movements began to emerge particularly in Kurdistan, Khuzistan, Azerbaijan and Baluchistan. The new regime brutally suppressed the legitimate demands of various nationalities for self-determination, placing even a greater emphasis on Persian racism as a determining factor in maintaining its power bases. Glorification of ‘the Aryan race’ symbolized through the hegemony of Persian language soon came to dominate the Islamic regime’s propaganda machine.

Towards the end ofafter the disintegration of Soviet Union, the formation of an independent Azerbaijani nation was declared north taeixi the Iranian borders.

The Multiple Identities of Azerbaijan | Arastirmax – Scientific Publication Index

Realizing the importance of such an event to the southern Azerbaijanis, the Iranian regime pursued a hostile relationship with the Republic of Azerbaijan.

Aryanization and Persianization of socializing agents such as esko education system took a new turn, turklerinkn with the passage of time. The Discursive Framework Following the highly effective analytical framework provided by Dei, and others in dealing with issues of power, domination, racism and injustice, in this paper I will take an anti-colonial approach to discuss the subject matter at hand. I believe that only an anti-colonial discursive framework is capable of effectively enabling one to critique and disrupt the racist and hegemonic relationships such as the one existing in current Iran.

The anti-colonial framework is a theorization of issues emerging from colonial relations, an interrogation of the configuration of power, embedded in ideas, cultures and histories of knowledge production. The existing literature on the Republic has not been sensitive to race, class, gender and other biases emanating from social position and location of the researchers. More importantly, almost the whole of the existing literature on the Azerbaijani national movement has been created by the members of the dominant Indo-European-Persian race and their sympathizers for an exception see Haqqi, Independent research on the movement was and is banned by both the monarchic and the Islamic regimes, respectively.

Aside from some sporadic government sponsored journalistic references e. Presumably, such a political organization had existed during the Azerbaijani democratic movement.

However, there is no viable information available regarding the group at the present. The book was first published in exile inthen republished in Iran with some modifications inthe year of itan revolution. Owing to the nature of their organization, the authors adopt an Iranian nationalistic viewpoint, greatly emphasizing the territorial integrity of Iran.

The ADP leaders are blamed for the defeat of the movement in that they failed to Iranize the democratic movement by focusing on Azerbaijan alone. Some leftist individuals and organizations have also provided their own account of the movement e. Adopting an orthodox class-based approach, the leftist literature, in general, views the aspirations of Azerbaijani people for self-determination through esmi class lens, seeking to subordinate various racial, national, social, cultural and linguistic issues to issues of class and relations of economics see for example Nabdel Not surprisingly, the independent western scholarship could not escape the censorship placed on the movement by the Pahlavi regime.

It was only after the fall of Pahlavi regime that books and articles began to appear on Azerbaijan and Kurdistan democratic republics for an exception on Kurdish Republic see Eagleton, Among the important published works after the revolution, one could mention L. Fawcett’s Iran and the Cold War: The Azerbaijani Crisis of and T.

Ethnicity and Autonomy in Twentieth-Century Iran Identifying the national movement as “crisis”, Fawcett tries to view the movement ‘from an Iranian perspective’ p.

Atabaki, on the other hand, promises an ‘unconventional, non-partisan and balanced account’ of the movement PP. His account serves to support Persian nationalistic ideology, emphasizing the centralized authority and denying the right of various nationalities tzrixi self-determination. Afshar and others. He bravely ventures to deny the common history, language, culture, religion, tradition, norms and values between a people living on northern and southern banks of the Araz River.


The Multiple Identities of Azerbaijan

It seems that in his view, championship of the dominant Persian ideology is tantamount to impartiality and non-partisanship! From my parents, grandparents, relatives, neighbors and others I heard about the executions, the burning of books, and the banning of my language, the language of my entire consciousness. I also heard and learned about the struggle of our people for self-determination, for justice, equality, freedom and liberation.

From the very beginning I tried to be a part of that struggle, a part of that movement for broader social justice and restoration of human dignity. Thus, throughout this paper, my approach is heavily informed and influenced by my geographical location, my nationality, and my personal experience—in short, by who I am and where I come from. Long before I was born, an Azeri poet, Bulut Qarachorlu, had vividly depicted my location and my background: Look at my misfortune My thoughts: Forbidden To remember my past: Forbidden To dream of my future: Forbidden Do you know that when I was born the very utterance of my first words was Forbidden?

Without my own knowledge The language of my mother into which I was born was Forbidden The Nineteenth century Azerbaijan is characterized by separation in of northern segment of Azerbaijan and its annexation into Russian Empire. According to a veteran Azeri scholar, Dr.

In his famous poem, Kamran Mehdi has captured the feelings of Azerbaijanis regarding the forced separation: True, the Araz divides a nation But the earth underneath is one!

The Ottoman Empire was disintegrated into a number of states under the British and French rules, with Turkish Republic emerging as an independent entity. The Bolshevik revolution in Russia breathed new life into the struggle of oppressed groups and nationalities.

On May 28,the northern Azerbaijan declared its autonomy under a democratic party led by Mohammed-Amin Resulzadeh. After a short while, the newly formed republic was invaded by the Red Army and was turned into one of the Socialist Soviet Republics see also Altestadt, Following the events in northern Azerbaijan, a liberation movement took place in southern Azerbaijan in The movement was led by Sheykh Mohammed Khiyabani, a progressive Azeri nationalist.

Khiyabani’s ‘Democratic Party of Azerbaijan’ put out a newspaper called Tajaddud Progress and began spreading revolutionary and democratic ideas in Azerbaijan. In a short period of time, the Khiyabani movement was able to gain the support of Azerbaijani people, disarm the central government’s forces, and declare Azerbaijan an autonomous republic called Azadistan or The Land of Freedom Taqiyeva ; Azari In the Kurdish city of Sanandaj, a group of workers and peasants came together and formed a party called Social Dimukrat Social Democrat.

Enjoying a tremendous popular support, the organization took control of the Sanandaj municipality and began redistributing grain from the warehouses of big landlords among the needy population see also Ghods, And finally, in a British orchestrated coup detat took place in Iran and reached its culmination in bringing to power a military dictator, known at the time as Reza Khan the Cossack.

Having enjoyed the unconditional support of the British, Reza Khan was able to suppress numerous socialist, nationalist, and separatist movements all over Iran.

Soon after, he centralized power and authority in Tehran, terminated the semi-autonomous status of Azerbaijan and Kurdistan, banned the usage of all non-Persian languages in any written form, and set out to enforce his Persian racist ideology throughout the country.

Ever since Reza Khan’s usurpation of power, all nationalities and ethnic groups in Iran had been living under a constant fear, humiliation and oppression. They were witnessing the eradication of their native culture, language, history and heritage on a daily basis. The new monarch had centralized government, had introduced Farsi as the only legitimate Iranian language, and had placed a ban on the languages of other nationalities. The languages of other nationalities were repressed either as an imperfect dialect of Farsi, or as an alien, non-Indo-European language, such as Turkish or Arabic.

The officially fabricated Iranian history was rapidly replacing the existing oral and written histories of various ethnic groups. Under the official history, all peoples living in Iran were to have the common ‘Aryan ancestry’.

The non-Persian nationalities were written new histories in line with Persian racist ideology.