Maziar Bahari was arrested by Iranian authorities shortly after appearing on “The Daily Show” in June 2009. Accused of being a spy, he endured 118 days of interrogation and torture, during which time he was only able to identify the man torturing him by the rosy smell of his cologne.
“We should not forget the entertainment value of these things for them,” he said. “These are people who live in dark rooms, they work in dark rooms. They basically spend about 12-13 hours a day in a dark room, beating up people, insulting people, and for them they need some sort of entertainment.”
“Somebody confessing to thinks that sometimes they dream about, like — and I have to thank Omid Memarian, who’s in the film — his interrogator was forcing him to describe a sexual act that never existed, and then asking to talk about the details of it. It’s sick because that guy really was enjoying what Omid was telling him. And it happened in my case, and in many other cases it happened, this same thing.”
In Iran, gay men are punished with public floggings and execution.
This video is from the Committee to Protect Journalists, published May 14, 2013.
“Stock Photo: Chained Person.” on Shutterstock: http://tinyurl.com/c8f4dvc
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
Raw Story is a progressive news site that focuses on stories often ignored in the mainstream media. While giving coverage to the big stories of the day, we also bring our readers' attention to policy, politics, legal and human rights stories that get ignored in an infotainment culture driven solely by pageviews.
Founded in 2004, Raw Story reaches 9 million unique readers per month and serves more than 30 million pageviews.