Every November 4, Iran’s hardliners celebrate the date of the hostage crisis at the American embassy in Tehran in 1979, which lasted 444 days. On this occasion, they hold anti-American demonstrations, where they shout slogans like “Death to America” and burn US and Israeli flags. But this year, a professor refused to trample on the flags. A video of his defiant act rapidly went viral.
Last Friday, the flags of the two countries were laid out on the floor in the political science department of the University of Mashhad, so that professors and students could trample them. But Sadegh Zibakalam, a political science professor visiting from Tehran, decided to go against the authorities’ wishes, and walks around the flags – not once but twice. His refusal was caught on camera.
The first video shows the Israeli flag at the entrance to the university, and Zibakalam stepping around it.
He has more trouble with the US flag, because university personnel have blocked his route to avoid walking on it. However, he doesn’t give in, and pushes them out of his way in order to avoid stepping on the flag.
Initially published on France24 on 11/11/2016
Read the full story here.