Fast-paced Persian dance music and the aroma of beef kebabs filled the Arena Nightclub in Hollywood on March 16 as nearly 1,000 local Iranian-Americans and their young children gathered to celebrate the upcoming Persian new year of Norooz.
A Brazilian newspaper has published an opinion article by an Iranian diplomat asserting that “there will soon be no place for Zionists in the Middle East.”
The Lebanese judo team at the 2012 London Olympics refused to practice next to the Israeli team.
In the early hours of Jan. 2, Shervin Lalezary was on only his fourth solo patrol as a Los Angeles reserve sheriff's deputy. Driving on Sunset Boulevard near Fairfax Avenue in West Hollywood, he spotted a minivan that fit the description of one believed to be used by an arsonist who had been on a nightly rampage for days, terrorizing huge swaths of Los Angeles.
A Ponzi scheme targeting the Persian-Jewish community in Los Angeles was shut down by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
This one’s for our children — the teens and 20-somethings who were born in this country or who’ve lived here most of their life, who have no memory of Iran except what’s been passed on to them or what they’ve constructed with their imagination.
Earlier this year, after nearly two decades of providing counseling and psychological help to local Iranians for free or at reduced rates, Shadee Toomari, a local Iranian-Jewish licensed clinical psychologist, formally established the community’s first nonprofit mental health treatment clinic.
I was 21 years old, a first-year law student at USC, when I walked by a trailer parked on an empty lot off McCarthy Way on the downtown campus. It was late afternoon, and I was on my way home; I only noticed the trailer because it was such an anomaly among the red brick buildings surrounding it. The door was open, and I could hear voices inside, and I saw a young man with dark skin and a sparse, reddish beard standing amid a mess of paper on the floor.
Fast-paced techno dance music blasts through Chikas, a retail clothing store off Santee Street in the heart of downtown Los Angeles’ Fashion District, which many call the Garment District. Robert Mahgerefteh, the store’s owner, helps the dozen or so young women looking for great deals on the latest fashions.
After their immigration to Southern California more than 30 years ago, the majority of the area’s Iranian Jewish community poured their energies into re-establishing themselves financially. Following their success, some Iranian Jews have turned their attention to promoting philanthropy in the arts, education and Israel in recent years.
An Iranian plot to kill the Saudi ambassador to the United States, thwarted earlier this week, also involved an attack the Saudi and Israeli embassies in Buenos Aires.
Israel is responsible for the assassination last week of an Iranian nuclear scientist, the German newspaper Der Spiegel reported.
The World Jewish Congress called on the International Olympic Committee to bar Iran from the 2012 Games until the country allows its athletes to compete against Israelis.
I once wrote a novel about an Iranian Jewish woman who grows wings and flies away from her husband’s home.
Iran's defense minister left Bolivia following complaints from Argentina over his alleged involvement in the 1994 bombing of the Buenos Jewish community center. Ahmad Vahidi reportedly left Bolivia late Tuesday night under a cloud of secrecy, Reuters reported, after arriving the previous day on an official visit to attend a military ceremony led by President Evo Morales.
Once a pillar of the local Iranian Jewish community, businessman and philanthropist Ezri Namvar was a trusted friend to whom many in the community loaned money freely and without fear. Namvar’s reputation, which has been tarnished during the last several years, was dealt another blow on May 19, when Namvar, 59, was convicted on four counts of wire fraud in a downtown Los Angeles federal court.
An Iranian Jewish real estate investor in Los Angeles was found guilty of fraud after he was accused of stealing $21 million from clients.
Two Iranian warships have left for Syria and plan to sail through the Suez Canal, Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said. Lieberman in a statement released Wednesday called the move a recurring Iranian "provocation." His statement suggested that Israel would not ignore Iran's actions.
One protester was killed and dozens were injured as thousands of Iranians demonstrated in support of uprisings in Egypt and Tunisia. Dozens of opposition protesters were arrested in the central Iranian city of Isfahan, and Iranian security forces fired tear gas at protesters marching in central Tehran toward Freedom Square on Monday, Reuters reported.
Los Angeles Iranian Jewish banker and real estate investor Ezri Namvar, 59, was indicted on Sept. 21 by a federal grand jury on five counts of fraud. The charges allege he failed to return $23 million given for safekeeping to his company, Namco Financial Exchange Corp. (NFE), and instead invested the money in risky real estate deals.
One winner has already been declared in the Iranian elections: The Internet, used by more than 23 million Iranians, or 34 percent of the population. But that figure alone cannot be used to determine which of the four candidates will win. At the very most, one can assume most Web users will vote for reformist candidates Mir-Hossein Mousavi or Mehdi Karroubi, rather than Mahmoud Ahmadinejad or Mohsen Rezeai.
Since two local Iranian Jewish brothers were charged with a 176-count criminal complaint by the L.A. City Attorney’s Office in February for alleged labor law violations at their car washes, many area Iranian Jewish business owners are quietly expressing support for the pair. And some believe they are being singled out for political reasons.
There was no clean knockout when New York Times columnist Roger Cohen faced off against some 400 members of the local Iranian Jewish and Bahai communities last week, but spectators were treated to some vigorous rhetorical sparring and nimble footwork.
The Jewish Journal created this list as a response to all those lists extolling fame, money, power and hotness. We honor these special ten because they are just people -- menschen, to use the proper Yiddish plural -- who understand the power and possibility of just one person.
Meet Gabriel Halimi, Kim Krowne, Manijeh Youabian, Andrew Wolfberg, Susan Corwin, Ari Moss, Richard Braun, Bracha Yael, Jack Matloff and Neil Sheff
Trusted friend of the community on hot spot as fight over lost $400 million begins
Thousands of protesters filled Dag Hammarskjold Plaza opposite the United Nations for a rally against Iran's president, who came to New York to address the General Assembly
Nessah Young Professionals' Aug. 26 annual gala drew more than 600 local Iranian Jewish young professionals and college students to the Area nightclub in West Hollywood, where they danced the night away to live music while also raising money on behalf of the Friends of the Israel Defense Forces (FIDF).
" . . . I am just an average person that fits the person you describe in "Post-Palin Depression." I do not have a therapist, but I have been in depression for almost two weeks now . . . "
Thirty years have passed since the massive and violent demonstrations against the Shah of Iran that began in September 1978, and for many, the start of that country's bloody revolution might seem a faded memory. Yet I have carried those shattering events with me all of my life: I was born on in Tehran on Sept. 11, 1978, as chaos unfolded on the streets outside
The five got into a van and were driven to a tent in the middle of the desert, near the Pakistani border. By this time, my great-grandmother had realized that they were not headed for a vacation but instead were fleeing Iran, and she began loudly protesting.
Over the past decades, nearly two dozen local Iranian Jewish groups have been involved with political awareness efforts, but no group until now has seriously pursued or organized communitywide political and civic activism.
His friends devised a plan. Two of them would wait outside the terminal in a car with the engine running, in case Melamed had to make a quick getaway. Two other friends and a Revolutionary Guard who had been bribed would wait inside the terminal to help the businessman escape if something went wrong.
"It was one of the longest nights in my life.They kept telling me to go to sleep, but I just could not, because I had young girls with me. Then one of the smugglers came into the room and fell asleep at the entrance."
Since 1978, Iranian Jews have injected into a stable, maybe even staid Jewish community talent, industry, a profound connection to their Jewish roots and a desire to have a positive political and social impact on the city. They have energized a Jewish community that could always use invigorating.
I don't know what will become of the legacy of Iranian Jews outside of Iran, how history will judge us in the context of the opportunities we had and the extent to which we helped make the world a better place with what we were given.
After a summer filled with Olympics, political conventions and bizarre reality shows ("I Survived a Japanese Game Show" anyone?) TV viewers are aching for something different.
Nearly a dozen L.A.-area Iranian Muslim news media outlets packed a room at UCLA's Covel Commons on June 29 for a press conference held by freshman state Assemblyman Joel Anderson (R-El Cajon) regarding new Iran divestment legislation he introduced earlier this year.
More than 300 young professionals members of the local Iranian Jewish “30 Years After” organization gathered at a private residence in Beverly Hills late last month to encourage political activism in the community.
We like to think of our Annual Guide to the Best of (Jewish) Los Angeles as kvetch-proof. Our writers and editors provide personal favorites that are so idiosyncratic and eclectic that it's hard to argue. Year after year, by the way, Los Angeles is still our "Best Jewish City."
". . . Watching the first legal gay marriage in Los Angeles . . . between two Jewish women, with their rabbi and their Jewish lawyer, fills me with extraordinary pride as a Jew . . ."
Treating him like a rock star, the crowd mobbed 70-something Eshaghian, seeking an autograph or photo op during the May 20 launch party for his Persian-language memoir, "A Follower of Culture."
Bianca Khalili's death is just one of the recent incidents of community distress that have left many local Iranian Jews speculating among themselves, unsure of how to address violence
The most important thing I can say to all my Persian friends is that before we are anything, we are all Jews. What binds us together is not just our humanity, but the collective Jewish identity we forged at Sinai some 3,300 years ago.
Nessah Synagogue's young Iranian Jewish professionals discuss their support for U.S. soldiers fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq as well as their preparation of 'care packages' for U.S. forces.
Iranian American Jews -- reaching out to poor and homeless in the city
Exclusive interviews with Israeli Knesset Member Ophir Pines-Paz and Iranian Jewish philanthropist Parviz Nazarian in changing Israel's form of government
Young Iranian American Jewish professionals discuss their involvement with a new mentoring program for teenagers in the community.
AUDIO: Iranian American Jews -- Jimmy Delshad, former Mayor of Beverly Hills
AUDIO: Iranian American Jews -- Dennis Prager and Shmuley Boteach praise local community
Southern California's Iranian Jews remember the life of world-renowned Iranian Jewish scholar Dr. Amnon Netzer.
Iranian Jewish members of the "30 Years After" organization talk about becoming more active in Los Angeles, state and national politics; featuring Assemblyman Mike Feuer and L.A. DWP General Manager H. David Nahai.
If Arash Saghian's recent marriage had taken place in the late 1980s or early 1990s, he would likely have faced ostracism from Los Angeles' Iranian Jewish community. The family of the 25-year-old businessman might have also frowned upon the match, all because his spouse Maya was Ashkenazi.
Indeed, immigrant communities often struggle with loyalties to the social mores of their old country and their new one. In the world of philanthropy and volunteerism, many Jewish leaders have learned that immigrant Jewish communities also have attitudes different from their American-born Jewish brothers and sisters. Those attitudes stem from the political systems and types of communities from which they came and what was expected of them in their native lands.
The group will bring together Jews and Muslims in a community-building dialogue on issues ranging from the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to immigration to homelessness.
There is no demographic study of the Iranian Jewish community in Los Angeles, although its size is generally given as 30,000, including the American-born children of the original immigrants.
When I first started writing, I sat with Khanum for hours at a time, asking questions. I was 21 and on leave of absence from law school. I had no idea what I was going to do with my life, but I knew some stories from Iran, and had begun to write them. They were scattered pieces of people's lives, bits of conversations I had overheard through the years, rumors that had been whispered too many times and taken on a reality that may or may not have been deserved.
After Hakimi's election two years ago, participation of women in religious services became a lightning-rod issue on both sides of the mechitza in the Orthodox congregation.
Rabbi Gary Greenebaum takes national leadership position; Survival of Jews in Iran is a paradox, panel shows.