My Testimony for Josh Fattal on the Eve of His Trial in Iran

 Reposted from http://blog.freethehikers.org

"Truth triumphs over untruth. Love conquers hatred." ~ Ghandi

For the past 18 months, Josh’s world has consisted of only the four walls around him alone for four months, and then shared with Shane for fourteen more months. During this seemingly endless tragedy, I have felt him with me on every plane, train and automobile. Because for four months before his capture, we shared every space, whether stationary or moving. Josh was in his element when we were moving. Keeping track of all the travel details for our entire group, taking care of our individual needs, and on alert and ready to handle any crisis thrown his way. On the ready to be an ear to confide in, a shoulder to lean on. I hold onto the image of his blushing face when he was told about the students’ glowing final evaluations of him. I imagine the expression on his face when he hears the glowing evaluations he has received from people around the world at a time when he can’t speak for himself. At a time when his actions can’t speak for themselves.

Josh embodies goodness and selflessness so his detention feels especially intensely unjust. I carry the immense weight and burden of that injustice every moment of every day. I am comforted by the knowledge that I and all who shared the IHP 2009 journey with us told him frequently how much he meant to us.

Although I was his supervisor, I came to rely on his wisdom. About teaching, about people, about communicating. He became a trusted colleague and precious friend. For four months, in five countries, I witnessed Josh’s every kind word and peaceful action. For more than eighteen months I have witnessed the outpouring of kind words and peaceful actions for Josh from people all over the world who know and love him. I have witnessed the growing support of people around the world who have grown to know him through our eyes and hearts. The growing groundswell of desire to see him free. As he should be.

Farah N. Mawani, Traveling Faculty

Health and Community Program 2009

International Honors Program

 

 

 

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About Farah N. Mawani

Kenyan-born Canadian global mental health policy researcher, FreetheHikers Co-founder/Social Media Director, and Founder Farahway Global. Farahway Global is a non-profit organization that engages the global public in action for human rights and mental health.