These photographs show Iranian families during the Ghajar era with their African slaves. I think it’s really important to share these within our communities, Iranians rarely admit that this is part of our history and when they do, they find it really easy to justify slavery by saying their servants were “treated well”. 

There was a shooting in Munich recently where an Iranian teenager was targeting and murdering POC, and I wasn’t surprised at all when I heard that most of his victims were Turkish. I’ve just been so angry ever since because I’m sick of Iranians refusing to talk about the fucked up parts of our culture. If you say anything that’s not “4000 years of glorious perfection” about the great Persia, people get offended. An Iranian teenager becoming obsessed with his “Aryan roots” is a serious consequence of our racism, we can’t ignore this.

We have to talk about our history of oppressing minorities, we have to talk about slavery, we have to talk about our current day oppression of minorities in Iran. We have to say something when Iranians talk about themselves as if we are a superior race. I know I can’t be the only Iranian who has seen and experienced this. 

These photographs are part of a collection by Pedram Khosronejad, an Iranian anthropologist who’s currently researching slavery in Iran through visual analysis. You can read more about him and his work here, and here’s his website. 

Please share this, and let’s be open and honest about racism and anti-blackness in our communities. We can be proud of our culture and critical of it at the same time, my worst fear is that we won’t grow because we’ve become obsessed with proving to the world that we are worthy of basic human rights and respect. We shouldn’t have to prove that, and refusing to acknowledge the ugly parts of Iranian culture doesn’t make us look good, it makes us ignorant assholes. 

In today’s Reuters Wrap: Police deaths surge in Venezuela, Americans are more likely to be OK with exporting oil, the CDC gets a new set of cameras, Ali Baba tries to work its magic on China and more.

REUTERS NEWS IN PHOTOS: Hezbollah, Lebanon and Israel

Burning vehicles near the village of Ghajar on Israel’s border with Lebanon. A Hezbollah missile strike wounded four Israeli soldiers on Wednesday, the biggest attack on Israeli forces by the Lebanese guerrilla group since a 34-day war in 2006. Israeli artillery fired at least 22 shells into open farmland in southern Lebanon after the strike, a Lebanese security source said, and thick smoke rose over the area. REUTERS/Maruf Khatib


Police killings surge in Venezuela

Police officers in Venezuela are dying at a rate of roughly one per day so far in 2015. “The criminals have conflict weapons, their firepower is infinitely superior to ours… If I put a criminal in jail, he’ll be out within days, and without doubt, he’ll look for me in my house to shoot me dead.” Here is the Reuters video on this troubling trend.

Ship, baby, ship

Americans are more likely than ever to favor easing a ban on exporting crude oil, so long as it does not lead to a raise in gasoline prices that have recently sunk to near $2 a gallon, according to a new Reuters-IPSOS poll. Related video

Camera Deployment Campaign

From the “Who knew they didn’t have those already” files: The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has introduced camera monitoring of workers in its highest-level biosafety laboratories as it seeks to restore public faith in its procedures after a series of mishaps, agency officials tell Reuters.

Open Sesame… please?

- Alibaba isn’t opening doors in China quite like it used to, now that the State Administration for Industry and Commerce has said at a sales festival that the online commerce company had misled customers. Now, writes columnist John Foley at Reuters Opinion, the company must convince investors that it didn’t know in advance the government would criticize it while not escalating its fight with the state. Nevertheless, Alibaba is moving toward filing a formal complaint.

- The company’s troubles with China come as its shares took a 10 percent dive on Thursday after reporting quarterly revenue that missed analysts’ expectations.

Wilkommen, bienvenue, welcome, im Cabaret

It still must be decadent Weimar Berlin circa 1929, as far as French Economy Minister Emmanuel Macron is concerned. He said that one of the hindrances to Europe’s economic recovery is German fetishism, “the fetishism of budget balance, the fascination for debt reduction, which is also the symptom of an ageing country.”

Shake Shack IPO is hot but can it match Chipotle?


Pennsylvania governor bans new oil/gas leases on state land

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf signed an executive order reinstating a moratorium on new leases for oil and natural gas development in state parks and forests. Wolf, a Democrat, generally supports fracking, but called in his inaugural speech this month for it to be done safely with less impact on the environment.

As Ebola ‘fear factor’ eases, African tourism edges back

From the jungle-clad slopes of the Great Lakes to the game parks of South Africa, tourism is beginning to recover as the Ebola outbreak in a corner of the continent ebbs and foreigners overcome their fear of the virus.

REUTERS PHOTO OF THE DAY: Hang in there, baby

A baby suspended in a cloth hammock at a food stall at Sungai Arut market in Pangkalan Bun, Borneo, Indonesia. REUTERS/Beawiharta