What is my share of happiness in this world?

by Hanif Garmabi, hunger striker in camp Liberty

Hanif Garmabi and his father, Abbas, in camp Ashraf
Hanif Garmabi and his father, Abbas, in camp Ashraf

I send this message to all awakened conscience and advocates for humanitarian values, and to all those who wish to live in a world free from suppression and filled with happiness.

What could be my share of joy and happiness in this world? What have I possibly done wrong to be condemned to spend most of my life under threat?

I spent my childhood in Iran, under the constant persecution and interrogation of Mullahs’ suppressive forces, just because my parents were with the Iranian opposition. I lived in conditions where every knock on the door and the sound of every footstep could herald my death. Simultaneously, I was always worried about my beloved parents because I heard the news about the ominous plots of the terrorist agents the mullahs dispatched to Iraq, where my parents lived.

Finally, after years of being distanced from my family, the painful separation came to end and I found joy and happiness when I joined my parents. This happiness did not last too long and was violently brought to an abrupt end when, on September 1st, Iraqi security forces killed my father and abducted my mother by the order of Prime Minister Al-Maliki and at the behest of the Iranian regime.

Again, my share of emotions was sadness and grief. My heart broke when I saw the image of my father lying on the clinic bed, shot in the head. Knowing that the same criminals hold my mother hostage only adds to the pain.

Abbas Garmabi, Hanif's father, shot in the head while lying wounded on a hospital bed in Ashraf's clinic
Abbas Garmabi, Hanif’s father, shot in the head while lying wounded on a hospital bed in Ashraf’s clinic

The betrayal of promises by the US and UN is salt to my wounds.

The UN Secretary General and the President of United States are both winners of the Nobel Peace Prize. Truly, what has been my share of their contribution to peace and humanity?

It’s been 54 days that the death of my father and the abduction of my mother tear me apart. But none of these Nobel Prize winners stepped forth for the freedom of my mother, and their silence is only paving the way for her extradition to Iran and her torture and execution by the mullahs.

So, when those who are morally and legally responsible refrain from standing up to their obligations, what other choice do I have than to have my voice heard through my hunger strike?

I reach out to all who read this article. I trust you. I trust all those who are the voice of the oppressed. I share my pain with you to ease the burden. I rely on you, I rely on your cries for justice, and if I still have hope for my mother’s freedom, it is because pure and freedom-loving human beings are standing by my side.

Hence I call on you to join me in my struggle, to shout this injustice to waken those responsible from their slumber.

At the end of the day, this stream of purity and empathy, however thin it might seem, will finally scour through the thickness of injustice.

What truly is my share of happiness in this world? It is the knowledge that there are people out there who actually care, and no matter the thousands of miles that might distance us, they will rise and do everything they can to help those whose lives are at stake.

So, please, raise your voices and call for the freedom of my mother and six other hostages.

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