Author Archives: Hazhir Teimourian, FRAS.

About Hazhir Teimourian, FRAS.

'Late love, if kindled, leads to scandal', says an old Persian proverb : Why bother 'to blog’ at 71? I find myself these days – August 2011 – one of the few grizzled old men of Middle East commentary still walking. Even though I was last on regular public view in 1996 – in the pages of The Times – broadcasters still remember. On some particularly hot days – and the past six months of the “Arab Spring” have seen many hot days – the BBC arrange for me to give up to 24 interviews to their innumerable national and local radio stations before breakfast: Every 8 minutes from 6 to 9, one of them is connected to my ISDN line – a miracle of modern technology that turns your desk into a radio studio – and that station gets about five minutes of reflection on the subject that’s making headlines. This is partly explained by their own correspondents being stretched in the field, and partly by the convenience of the high-quality sound that the ISDN line provides. At short notice, it may prove hard to get a younger, more attractive commentator to a studio. But it must also have something to do with the bonds of friendship that develop across the years between broadcasters and print journalists - even in the political class generally - across ideological lines. Until recently, I had on my noticeboard a fading piece of paper bearing an address in the City, in the Barbican. It was written by the late and beloved Brian Redhead – the John Humphries of his day – and it was his home address. One morning in 1990 in the Today office in Broadcasting House, he dragged me to his desk and wrote down the address and asked that I visit him and his wife at home. Unfortunately, I never did. In those days – remember the gassing of the Kurds of Halabja in 1988 by the accursed Saddam or the invasion of Kuwait in 1990? – it sometimes felt as if I lived at the BBC, to the annoyance of the Foreign Desk at The Times. (I was told that Simon Jenkins, at one of his first morning conferences as Editor, had asked: “Who is this man Teimourian who is everywhere described as of The Times”? Later, he told me – or threatened me – that he read every word I wrote, but was also gracious enough to ask me to have breakfast with him at the fabulous Connaught Hotel, where he lived.) Thus I have accumulated many ‘friends’ I have never met, from Sydney to Calgary, through Dublin, Glasgow, Cardiff, Belfast and New York. Sorry for the digression. Why am I starting what the young call a ‘blog’ in my 8th decade? Well, first of all, let’s see whether it lasts and whether anyone will read it. It’s probably a whim and one last attempt at weaving my way into the company of the glamorous young. I was once their darling and old longings die hard. As the Persians say: Eshqe piri, gar bejonbad / Sar be rosva’i zanad (Late love, if kindled / Leads to scandal.) But assuming it lasts, it won’t do any harm to hear the occasional reflections of a man who has watched the world from the privileged position of the British media superpower for over 40 years. If it becomes embarrassing, hopefully my family and friends will gently let me know that it’s time I spent the remainder of my time in the greenhouse talking to my aubergine plants. A glimpse of my career and some of my past writings can be found at www.HTeimourian.net or www.KhayyamByTeimourian.net . You may also be interested in www.MigrationWatchUK.com and www.BalancedMigration.com . I am on the Council of the former, under Andrew Green, and a non-parliamentary member of the latter. The Group is chaired jointly by Frank Field (Lab.) and Nicholas Soames (Con.) and includes such non-partisan figures as former Archbishop Lord Carey and the former Speaker of the House of Commons Betty Boothroyd. Update (April 2017): for more up-to-date information, please see www.ConsolationsOfAutumn.com or my Author Profile on Amazon.

The Arab-Iranian attacks on South Kurdistan

The Arab-Iranian Shias’ attack on the Kurds  – Oct 16, 2017. This is for my dear Kurdish friends in their hour of need. As I watch all those distraught refugees from the outskirts of Kirkuk, I want to tell you that, … Continue reading

Posted in America, Barzani, Boris Johnson, current affairs, Damascus, Erdogan, Iran, Iraq, ISIS, Islmaic State, Israel, Kurdistan, Kurds, Kurds of Iraq, Middle East, Syria, Turkey, Yazidis | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

What next for the Kurds and Iraq?

This piece was commissioned by the British Armed Forces’ Sound and Vision Corporation for their website:  www.forces.net/news . They will probably shorten it. 27/Sep2017. Kurds and Arabs, Ottomans and Safavids. Hazhir Teimourian asks: What next in Iraq? From Washington to Peking … Continue reading

Posted in Barzani, Boris Johnson, current affairs, Damascus, Erdogan, Iran, Iraq, ISIS, Islmaic State, Israel, Kurdish inependence, Kurdish referendum, Kurdistan, Kurds, Kurds of Iraq, Middle East, Syria, Turkey | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Assad and Saddam, Khan Sheikhoun and Halabja, 2017 and 1988

In interviews to BBC radios this morning about America’s attack on Syria, I kept calling Assad Saddam. No wonder, of course. They were fellow Ba’thists and genocidal monsters, and they both used gas on civilians. Unfortunately, the world didn’t act … Continue reading

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On the Donald: How worried should we be?

On the Donald: I’ve been recently saying to my friends and family that Trump’s mannerisms reminded me of Mussolini. Having watched his acceptance speech this morning, I’m a little less worried in that respect. It was statesmanlike and let us … Continue reading

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Report of a high-level private debate on Brexit in London on June 14, 2016

I’m writing this for those of my friends who would have enjoyed being present the other day in London as a distinguished panel of speakers argued whether we should vote to remain or leave in the EU next week. The … Continue reading

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Peter Cave on my review of Bryan Magee’s Ultimate Questions

Those of my few ‘followers’ who liked my recent review of Bryan Magee’s latest book may like to know that I lost a little sleep after posting it. Who was I, I said to myself, an amateur reader of philosophy, … Continue reading

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Bryan Magee’s Ultimate Questions, Princeton University Press, 2016.

Before I explain why this book didn’t quite come up to my expectations of Bryan Magee, let me express my gratitude of a lifetime to him. He’s been a guide and an inspiration since the 1970s, and I’ve had the … Continue reading

Posted in Bertrand Russell, Bohr, Einstein, Ethics, ISST (Intl. Soc. for the Study of Time), Julian Huxley, language, old age, perception, Philosophy, Reading, science, Time, Uncategorized, Writing | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment