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Jafar Yaghoobi

San Francisco, California, United States


- Born and raised in Tabriz, Iran
- Earned my B.S. degree from the University of Tabriz, Iran in 1971
- Came to UCD in 1973 on a scholarship, where I received my PhD in Genetics in 1979
- Met and married my wife during this period in Davis
- Returned to Iran in 1979 as the Revolution of 1979 toppled the Shah’s regime
- Became a faculty member at the National University of Iran in Tehran in 1979
- joined a secular-leftist opposition group in 1980 and struggled against the brutal Islamic Republic system; for freedom, democratic rights and justice
- Our daughter was born in Tehran in 1983
- I was detained during a massive crack-down by the security forces of the regime in October 1984
- I was interrogated and tortured in the Komiteh detention center, then served four-and-a-half years in Evin, Gezelhessar and Gohardasht prisons
- I survived the Mass-killing of political prisoners in the summer of 1988
- I was then released in 1989 into house-arrest in Tehran
- I fled Iran to Turkey in October 1989 with the help of smugglers
- I met up with my family at a Turkish border town, temporarily moved to Germany, and then arrived in the U.S. in 1990
- I worked at UCD as a genetics and molecular biology research scientist from 1991 until my retirement in 2005
- Since then, I have focused on writing and publishing my memoir, Let Us Water the Flowers: The Memoir of a Political Prisoner in Iran (Prometheus Books, April 2011), and have been active in bringing attention to the human rights abuses and violations by the regime in Iran
- As an educator and Middle East politics analyst, I have also focused my attention on educating the U.S. public regarding the current events of the Middle East, and the US foreign policy in the region.
- Recently, I published my memoirs in two volumes in Farsi language, titled The Unknown Boundaries of Life and Death.

Interests: Memoirs/biography, historical fiction

Published writer: Yes

Freelance: No


Published works:


  • Let Us Water the Flowers: the Memoir of a Political Prisoner in Iran
  • The Unknown Boundaries of Life and Death)مرزهای ناشناختۀ مرگ و زندگی