WAMU 88.5 : News

Iranian-American Builds Community In Va., Hopes For Change Abroad

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One Iranian-American says while change in Iran would be nice, it's time for Iranians here to invest more in preserving their culture.

Khash Montazami says it's a very Western habit to think of all Middle-Eastern countries as similar. But he also says he and his Iranian-American friends thought of their home country as soon as the protests in Egypt started.

"The song 'Walk Like An Egyptian' came to mind," he says. "In fact, [in] the early days of the Egyptian protests, there was lots of talk that, Would it inspire the Iranians once again?"

Montazami says some sort of change, even if its not a regime change, will happen in Iran.

But his focus is here in Northern Virginia, the place he's called home for 32 years. He's formed a nonprofit group aimed at building an Iranian-American community center in the area.

"The Iranian-American community has reached the financial and intellectual maturity to start funding a nonprofit center that caters to the under-served Iranian-American community," Montazami says.

Montazami and his colleagues are hosting their first fundraiser for the project in March.

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