The Role of Journalists and Employees of Abadan Radio in Covering the Liberation of Khorramshahr

Compiled by: Faezeh Sassanikhah
Translated by: Fazel Shirzad

2022-6-1


Working on Abadan Oil Radio almost continued. The city was in a situation where we had the same quota of bullets from the Iraqis every day, and the problems persisted, but we worked and operated more. On the radio, one or two colleagues decided to get married.

     In April 1982, I worked with Gholamreza Rahbar and one or two other comrades in the center of Ahvaz during Operation Fath al-Mubin, and valuable experience was gained during operations such as the Al-Quds Road and the liberation of Bostan, which paved the way for cooperation between Abadan and Ahvaz.

     The result of this way of working and being in harmony with the operational base was a principled planning and staging of silence, laying the groundwork, starting clearer propaganda, entering the peak and playing epic slogans and provocative programs, consolidating positions, expressing achievements, and defending the tablet firmly and using experiences for the next operation that had a positive effect on the continuation of work and more regular and voluminous service to the national radio channel.

      Operation Fath-ol-Mobin gave us a good opportunity to experience being together; so that in the Operation Beit-ol-Moqaddas and the liberation of Khorramshahr, the centers of Lorestan and Bushehr and some other centers were in this coordinated range and achieved significant achievements in the field of sacred defense propaganda.

     Before the next operation, I went on leave for a few days, and my wife, with my consent and encouragement, decided to come to Ahvaz with other active sisters in the IRGC to take care of the nurses and help in the next operation. And it was decided to inform the details by phone after settling in Takhti Stadium in Ahvaz.

     Operation Beit-ol-Moqaddas was prestigious and very important for the entire Iranian nation and its radio colleagues, and of course, the experiences of the past year or two helped us. Some operational lines in Khorramshahr were closer to us and some other lines of operations were covered by the center of Ahvaz, which was more open-handed; Because it had to be operated from different areas such as the Khorramshahr highway area, Hamidiyeh barracks, East Karun area, and Darkhovin area. Because of this, we needed different coordination so that the forces could act correctly, on time, and strike. In the meetings we had with our colleagues in the center of Ahvaz, it was considered advisable to focus more on the work in the center of Ahvaz, and we in Abadan should strengthen and broadcast the sound of Ahvaz Radio in this regard. Gholamreza Rahbar was the representative of the Radio and Television in the camp. Mr. Qalambur was both the production manager of Radio Abadan and the deputy leader, and it was decided that Mr. Seyed Mohammad Sadr Hashemi and I would work in the center of Ahvaz. Mr. Sadr Hashemi became the coordinator of the three radio stations in Ahvaz, Abadan, and Dezful, and I became responsible for hearing and controlling the wireless reports and tapes sent from the area of operation. All the reporters had to hand over their tapes to me, and I was directly responsible for my dear brother, Abdul Mohammad Chinisaz, with whom I consulted when needed. I settled in Ahvaz on May 28, and we worked for about 19 to 20 hours during the days of Operation Beit-ol-Moqaddas. In addition to controlling reports and coordinating reporters, I was also active in editing programs and producing in some shifts.

      During the operation, that is, between May and June 1982, our special programs were broadcast for 18 to 19 hours, which, in fairness, put a lot of pressure on all our colleagues. Producing and broadcasting 19 hours a day for 25 days was not an easy task. They even closed the library of the center of Ahwaz and asked staff for reporting and record memories and such things that, hopefully, everyone was doing their job well.

      People from other radio and television centers also came to cover the Operation Beit-ol-Moqaddas and the liberation of Khorramshahr; Recording from the center of Isfahan named Valiullah Aghababalo, a newscaster named Akbari from Tehran, Nusratullah Akbari and Mahmoud Reza Karimi from national news announcers, people from Mashhad and Yazd and other provinces along with one or two capable producers from the centers who was also a speaker and writer. I remember; it because was a national work. During those few weeks, the reporters and radio producers moved alongside the fighters, and immediately after each advance, they entered the operational areas and quickly prepared reports and brought them to the radio, which we used after controlling and summarizing.

      Many reporters also came from different cities to prepare the reports required for their centers. And we did not neglect any service because Khorramshahr was a part of the country and belonged to all of Iran, and it was the right of all provinces to be constantly informed about the process of its liberation.

      Due to the close and intimate relationship that was established between the colleagues and managers of the Ahwaz Center and the base command, we were informed about security issues before the operation, and briefings with the base were very effective. In this way, in the different stages of the operation, we knew what the situation was and we understood what stage they were in and what they wanted to do after that, and when we had to produce and broadcast programs in a normal and analytical way, when with a slogan tone. Let's continue and follow the policy between the two stages of the operation. The internal coordination of the colleagues was also excellent. Mr. Chinisaz and Mr. Navidi and all the production, distribution, technical and transportation agents were very friendly and coordinated and we enjoyed working together.

     In the meantime, Mr. Chinisaz and I, like The forces of the news, sent daily most of the reports to Tehran to prepare programs for the national radio through the return line, plane, and bus.

     I remember; Mr. Navidi and I had found and used the famous war march in the archives of Abadan Radio and Ahvaz Radio, and at the same time with Operation Fath al-Mubin, when Tehran's colleagues were looking for a suitable march, we sent them a copy of the same march. This memorable and exciting march during Operation Beit-ol-Moqaddas and in the later stages of the Sacred Defense was widely used when interrupting normal programs and broadcasting announcements of the operational base used by us and our colleagues in Abadan, Ahvaz, Tehran, and other Islamic Republic Broadcasting Centers. Since then, it has become very popular throughout Iran. My wife, as I mentioned, went to the convalescent home in Takhti Stadium in Ahvaz to take care of the wounded through the IRGC, and she was responsible for caring for the injured with the help of other sisters, which was hard and exhausting because the surgeons could not control their nervous condition and behavior. Between the second and third stages of Operation Operation Beit-ol-Moqaddas, I went to the Takhti Stadium in Ahvaz and saw that my wife was very sad and saddened by the martyrdom of one of her friends, I gave her some consolation and said goodbye.

     Gholamreza Rahbar, on the eve of the arrival of our forces in Khorramshahr, was injured by a few small fragments on his leg and was hospitalized in the same Takhti sports stadium. I had again given him a tape recorder to prepare special reports for him, and he wished to be present as a special reporter until the last stage of the liberation of Khorramshahr.

     In a situation where Mr. Rahbar was unable to continue working due to injury, Gholamreza Kouchak, a colleague of the Ahvaz Center, took over this task. Mojtaba Alamshah was also one of our brave brothers who cooperated with the Supreme Leader and Qalambar in the camp and in the operation to conquer and liberate Khorramshahr, with the cooperation of Arjang Tavakoli, Mohsen Qaisari and Khalil Ramesh, was able to capture interesting images of the operations and courage of the fighters.

      In one part of the film, an Iraqi helicopter that was trying to drive high-ranking Iraqi army commanders out of the Khorramshahr railway area was targeted and began to spin and fall. This image has long been the logo of national television news. In another scene from the same film, we saw the hats and boots of the captives and countless dead of the enemy who had fallen on the ground, and the Iraqi captives were holding the picture of Imam Khomeini (PBUH) and kept saying:

  • I seek refuge in you, Khomeini!

     It was not clear where the photos of Imam Khomeini were found in those circumstances and who distributed the photos among them.

     Another of our cameramen managed to capture images of Iraqis fleeing on the Karun River on the day they tried to reach the other side of the river using a tube and escape death.

     Khorramshahr was liberated at approximately 10:30 a.m. on the  May 24th of 1361. Fortunately, the director-general of the center, Mr. Safdari, had succeeded in obtaining radios from the Fatah al-Mubin operation and installing them on the center's mission vehicles by the stone-cutting engineer, one of the center's technical officials. It was around 11 a.m. that day when Jafar Talebi came on the wireless line and announced: "Khorramshahr has been liberated."

     Khorramshahr was liberated at approximately 10:30 a.m. on the third day of June 1982. Fortunately, the director-general of the center, Mr. Safdari, had succeeded in obtaining radios from the Fatah al-Mubin operation and installing them on the center's mission vehicles by the stone-cutting engineer, one of the center's technical officials. It was around 11 a.m. that day when Jafar Talebi came on the wireless line and announced: "Khorramshahr has been liberated."

     I cannot express in any words the feelings and the amount of happiness at that moment. My friends and I at Ahwaz Radio could not contain our happiness. We knew that our friends in the center of Tehran had also heard the news, but the Islamic fighters had to be fully stationed in Khorramshahr and stabilize their positions so that the news of the liberation of Khorramshahr could be officially announced.

     Before 10:30 a.m., we broadcast epic and a war news, and the famous march of the operation on Ahwaz Radio, encouraging the fighters to advance and conquer Khorramshahr, but as soon as we heard the news of the liberation, we were happy with what we had heard on the radio. We spread it and it spread and we started playing happy military songs, such as the famous song "Blessed be this victory" which was composed after the Fatah al-Mubin operation with the poem of the late Sabzevari and the voice of Mohammad Golriz. In those moments, we also became in tune with this song:

 

Through the strength of our nation and soldiery

Become immortalized by the dawn light of our victory

Morning wish blown from the shores

Live branches by the victory have flowers

Blessed be this victory, blessed be this victory

Blessed to the gardener for the spring of mastery

Blessed be this victory to the flowery lands

Blessed be this victory to the singing birds

The homeland be on top of glory

Blessed be this victory, this victory.

 

While such songs were being played, I felt we could not fail to tell others about the liberation of Khorramshahr. At every opportunity, I would dial the city code and number and tell anyone who picked it up: "I will call from the area of operation, wait, you will hear the best and most beautiful news today. I did not ask which city it was, I just took the code and number and said the sentence. I also pushed myself for a while until I remembered the phone number of my cousin in Isfahan. I called and told them the news. Finally, we could not stand it until ten minutes before 2:00 PM, and Mr. Sadr Hashemi announced the news of the liberation of Khorramshahr on Radio Abadan with this text and with special emotion: “Khorramshahr! The bloody eyes of Operation Beit-ol-Moqaddas await the rainbow that passes through your bloody sky. Now we come to you to end this waiting.

     Khorramshahr! You were the city of resistance, the city of epic, the city of courage, and the city of blood and self-sacrifice.

    Khorramshahr! You are now the messenger of freedom. History will write my name in holiness and tomorrow generations will read it to learn the lesson of faith and courage. Khorramshahr! We come to you, open our way to Quds!"

    And finally, around 3 pm on the national channel, first Nasser Kashani, the newscaster, and then Mahmoud Karimi Alavijeh, the head of the national radio and the famous singer of the sacred defense era, announced with special excitement that became famous in the history of war and sacred defense:

    "Dear listeners, pay attention! Dear listeners, pay attention! Bloody city, city of blood was liberated!"

    Tehran Radio and Television kept calling and pressuring us to make and send a video for the nine o'clock news anyway. Meanwhile, there were reports from Ahvaz, Abadan, Shadegan, Mahshahr, and other cities of Khuzestan, as well as Tehran and all over Iran that people were taking to the streets and rejoicing. The all-encompassing and indescribable joy and passion that the contemporary history of Iran remembers such an event like that only once again, that is, in the victory of the glorious Islamic Revolution in February 1978.

     The film crews, who went to the Operation Beit-ol-Moqaddas area of operation, filmed many different areas of Khorramshahr, enemy-occupied strongholds, Iraqi prisoners and captives and commanders captured by our forces, and the Khorramshahr Grand Mosque, a symbol of the Iranian resistance. Mr. Haj Parvaneh was with a group who had filmed the Khorramshahr Grand Mosque. The films were brought and our hard-working friends, Mr. Rahmani, assembled them quickly and delivered them to their broadcast partners in Abadan, Ahvaz, and Tehran. [1]

 


[1] Saberi, F. (2018). Frequency 1160, Tehran, Surah Mehr, first edition in 2019, p. 288.

 



 
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