In Memory of Shahla Samii
Unfortunately I never got to meet Shahla Samii. My contact with her was through e-mail and in connection with a political campaign waged by a few individuals who were hoping against hope and were using whatever last resources at their disposal to speak up against tyranny and injustice in their homeland. Shahla Samii was outstanding within this group for her sharp intelligence and her unwavering fairness of judgment. She never took a stance for the sake of pleasing this or that source of power or without first carefully and meticulously evaluating the merits and demerits of the case at hand. I remember her advising her friends ‘Always speak with conviction, never sway from your principles’.
Embroiled in a heated political discussion some of our compatriots tend to indulge in a caustic, bitter or downright offensive manner of speech foreign to our native character. Shahla Samii's temperament stayed entirely Iranian in this regard. She never deviated from her customary courtesy and gentle kindness. She argued without attacking any person and made her point without being in the least disrespectful.
Without her displaying the slightest symptoms of intellectual pretension, it soon became clear to her interlocutors that she was a very cultivated lady, at home amongst books and in possession of a refined taste.
Shahla Samii will remain an example to all those who fight for a democratic Iran. She will be remembered as a woman of integrity and high standards and inspire all those who devote their moral and intellectual energy to their homeland without any ulterior motive or any hope of personal gain. In the consciousness of those who came into contact with Mrs Samii, her courage and dedication to her dear Iran has left an indelible memory. May she rest in peace.
Shahla Samii, 17 December 1944 – 5 November 2006