March 23, 2023
On this first day of Ramadan, we would like to honor activist and Iranian Journalist Masih Alinejad. Despite facing numerous threats to her life, she has courageously fought for the rights of women in Iran.
Alinejad was born in a small village in Iran and moved to the city of Tehran to pursue her education.
She started her career as a journalist in 2001 and worked for various Iranian newspapers and television channels.
In 2009, she moved to London and started working for the Persian service of the Voice of America.
“Woman, Life, Freedom.. It is a Crime”
In 2014, Alinejad launched a social media campaign called “My Stealthy Freedom”.
The campaign encouraged women to share photos of themselves without the mandatory headscarf (hijab).
The campaign quickly went viral and gained international attention, as women from Iran and other countries shared their photos.
Alinejad’s campaign challenged the Iranian regime’s strict dress code laws, and she quickly became a target of the authorities.
Good Trouble in Exile
She has been the target of numerous online attacks and smear campaigns by the Iranian government.
In 2015 the Iranian government threatened to kidnap her.
Then in 2019, Iranian intelligence agents allegedly planned to kidnap Alinejad and take her back to Iran.
And just a few months ago, 3 men were indicted by US authorities for an alleged plot to kill Alinejad.
Despite the threats to her life, Alinejad continues to be a vocal critic of the Iranian regime’s treatment of women.
The Wind at her Back
In 2018, she published a memoir titled “The Wind in My Hair: My Fight for Freedom in Modern Iran”.
The book detailed her experiences as a journalist and activist in Iran and her struggles in exile.
Alinejad’s activism has not gone unnoticed, and she has received numerous awards for her work.
These include the Women’s Rights Award from the Geneva Summit for Human Rights and Democracy, and the Women’s Courage Award from the Atlantic Council.
Alinejad continues to escalate the fight, especially in the wake of the murder of Mahsa Amini, last summer.
Amini was a 22-year old Iranian woman who died in police custody in a Tehran hospital in September, 2022.
She was arrested and beaten for not wearing a hijab.
Amini’s murder has sparked massive protests in the streets of Iran in solidarity.
Thousands have been arrested and hundreds have been killed by the oppressive regime in the aftermath.
Alinejad continues to amplify the voices of Iranian women and to challenge the Iranian regime’s oppressive policies.
Her bravery and determination have inspired many, and she has become a symbol of hope and courage for those fighting for human rights and democracy in Iran.