Tuesday, November 24, 2015

PERSEPOLIS…HERE I AM.


I visited Iran for the third time and traveled around the country ten days in June, 2012 visiting all the major cities traveling by land mostly, including Persepolis the ancient city seventy kilometers near Shiraz.


What is most interesting this time is that it is summer so the trees all had leaves. It is bright and sunny but not humid so even if you walk a lot you don’t sweat but pant.   
This was my fourth visit to this country but the first time I did in summer; the other three were in winter so the views and scenery in Tehran were different now with the tree all having lush and thick leaves and with the locals not wearing thick clothes.
But their women still wear their chador and black garbs with the younger ones preferring to let out some hair under their headscarf, many of whom would remove them if they are out of the country and especially in Kuala Lumpur where there are a large number of them coming here as tourists.
There is also a large number of Iranians living in America and they are fast in making their presence felt including in the fields of entertainment and with many of them becoming important figures in major professions.  
There is a sizeable Iranian community in Malaysia too now and also their restaurants but they prefer to stick with themselves and not to mix around with the local Muslims.
Persepolis stands in the middle of a wide desert and had most of the main buildings destroyed by the time we got there and could only see some of the pillars of former halls belonging to their ancient kings.
Alexander the Great a.k.a. Iskandar Zulkarnain according to the Arabs and Muslims, was the main reason for the destruction of the city. But he failed to destroy much of the stories of Persepolis.
And this was also where the former Shah of Iran had organized the anniversary of his rule over Iran which would later crumble not long later. And he would be forced to flee from the country to allow Imam Khomeini to establish the Islamic Republic of Iran that exists till today, with no chance whatsoever of it collapsing, much to the chagrin of his son, now living in exile in America.
The Shah of Iran was buried in Cairo, Egypt.
Iran is such a wonderful country with its wide land which gives comfort to its people and also security from being attacked by whatever means possible, also much to the chagrin of its sworn enemies.
All that they could do was to assassinate five Iranian scientists who were said to be working with the Iranian Atomic department the list of names that was said to have been provided by the IAEA, who had come to the country on the pretext of conducting research on the country’s nuclear program but whose members were said to be spying for Iran’s enemies.
Saddam Hussein suffered because of the IAEA which confirmed to Iraq’s enemies that the country did not pose any serious threat so its enemies could then attack it. And attack they did with furiousity using weapons of mass destruction that they had never used before. The Iraqis were target practice.
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Note: The text below is from Wikipedia.Persepolis is near the small river Pulvar, which flows into the river Kur (derived from Persian word Cyrus / Kuroush). The site includes a 125,000 square metre terrace, partly artificially constructed and partly cut out of a mountain, with its east side leaning on Kuh-e Rahmet ("the Mountain of Mercy"). The other three sides are formed by retaining walls, which vary in height with the slope of the ground. From 5 to 13 metres on the west side a double stair. From there it gently slopes to the top. To create the level terrace, depressions were filled with soil and heavy rocks, which were joined together with metal clips.
Around 519 BC, construction of a broad stairway was begun. The stairway was planned to be the main entrance to the terrace 20 metres above the ground. The dual stairway, known as the Persepolitan stairway, was built in symmetrically on the western side of the Great Wall. The 111 steps were 6.9 metres wide with treads of 31 centimetres and rises of 10 centimetres. Originally, the steps were believed to have been constructed to allow for nobles and royalty to ascend by horseback. New theories suggest that the shallow risers allowed visiting dignitaries to maintain a regal appearance while ascending. The top of the stairways led to a small yard in the north-eastern side of the terrace, opposite the Gate of Nations.
Grey limestone was the main building material used in Persepolis. After natural rock had been levelled and the depressions filled in, the terrace was prepared. Major tunnels for sewage were dug underground through the rock. A large elevated water storage tank was carved at the eastern foot of the mountain. Professor Olmstead suggested the cistern was constructed at the same time that construction of the towers began.
The uneven plan of the terrace, including the foundation, acted like a castle, whose angled walls enabled its defenders to target any section of the external front. Diodorus writes that Persepolis had three walls with ramparts, which all had towers to provide a protected space for the defense personnel. The first wall was 7 metres tall, the second, 14 metres and the third wall, which covered all four sides, was 27 metres in height, though no presence of the wall exists in modern times.
Ruins of a number of colossal buildings exist on the terrace. All are constructed of dark-grey marble. Fifteen of their pillars stand intact. Three more pillars have been re-erected since 1970 AD. Several of the buildings were never finished. F. Stolzehas shown that some of the mason's rubbish remains. These ruins, for which the name چهل منار Chehel minar ("the forty columns or minarets") can be traced back to the 13th century. They are now known as تخت جمشید Takht-e Jamshid ("the throne of Jamshid"). Since the time of Pietro della Valle, it has been beyond dispute that they represent the Persepolis captured and partly destroyed by Alexander the Great.


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