by Lori Foroozandeh
Denver, Colorado, 2009
This books tells a horrendous story of an American woman in a prison camp somewhere in Iran, who was tortured purely because she was an American.
Lori was abused as a child and married at age 15 to get away from her adoptiive family. She had a son, Douglas. The marriage broke up and Lori went back to school to become a nurse. She graduated in 1985.
Sometime in the mid 1990s Lori married Mohammed Foroozandeh, an Iranian. Upon marrying him, she automatically became an Iranian citizen under Iranian law. In the late 1990s Lori and her husband went to Iran to live. They lived in the southern city of Shiraz.
For 2 years Lori worked as an english teacher, forced to be submissive and to wear the all covering chador (aka burkha). Mohammed also abused her as well. He slapped her regularly whenever she was not submissive enough or fast enough.
Lori taught teenage girls and young women at a private college. This is a photo of Lori's students at the college. Leila, on the far right, was drowned in the backyard pool by her father because she was caught with a man she was not married to. Lori (in the middle with the blond hair and white shirt) was stunned by this punishment.
Lori's husband, Mohammed Foroozandeh was a drug addict and a drug dealer. He was always making business trips and then he began a new business as an "immigration consultant". This became Lori's job after she was forced to leave the private college. The Iranian government was putting pressure on the college to not hire the infidel American.
Lori was the front person for the immigration consutant business. She had all the knowledge of immigration to USA and what was required. Mohammed found the Iranian clients who were willing to pay big money to get to the USA. He charged very high prices. Then the money would disappear. Lori eventually discovered that Mohammed was using the money to buy drugs.
When Lori entered Iran, she was forced to give up her passport to the Iranian immigration department. In the year 2001, Mohammed decided that he needed to leave Iran. He arranged for them to leave by bus. At the bus station the day after 9-11, the police arrived and Lori was captured. Mohammed got away.
Lori spent the next several months in a prison camp where she was tortured. Other prisoners in the camp either had American sympathies, had relatives in USA or had busines contacts in USA. Lori was handcuffed to another girl who was supposedly part Iranian and part American. Her family were also in the same camp. The family eventually escaped, but not before the girl died. They took Lori with them.
Lori eventually made her way to Teheran but when she went to the Swiss embassy (who also handle US interests in Iran) she was turned away and they refused to help her because they considerd her to be a liar. They claimed her story was impossible The Iranians did not torture, they said. Lori had no passport and could not leave Iran legally. She found some friends and supporters in Iran and one of them eventually got her passport back.
When Lori arrived back in USA she wanted to tell her story to the public.But every where she turned, the media and the government refused to listen to her, refused to beleive her and refused to allow her to go public.
Lori has been back in USA now for several years. She has spent msny years dealing with her PTSS - post traumatic stress syndrome - and has found another wonderful man to whom she is engaged.
She also decided that she must let the world know the truth about Iran. No mainstream publisher or newspaper will touch her story, so Lori has had to publish it herself.