TEHRAN -- She’s one of the most powerful people in Iran: A vice president in charge of a critical portfolio, a key reformist and ally of Iran’s new president.
But in America, she’s still known as Sister Mary.
Masoumeh Ebtekar was born in Tehran to a middle-class family, but gained notoriety as the English-speaking spokesperson for the Iranian students who occupied the U.S. embassy in 1979. For days on end, Ebtekar, who spoke fluent English, became a fixture on American television sets, often translating for western journalists, even as 52 Americans were being held hostage inside.
It’s a role she was well-suited for. At the age of three, Ebtekar’s family moved from Iran to the United States, where her father went on to earn his Ph.D. at the University of Pennsylvania. For six years, first living in Worcester, Mass., then in Upper Darby, a sleepy suburb outside of Philadelphia, Ebtekar’s received an ordinary, suburban American upbringing.
Later, her family returned to Iran, where sheRead More »from Masoumeh Ebtekar: The Most Powerful Woman in Iran