The night for Mohammed Darvish

Mohammad Darvish, born on January 24th, 1966, has been the loudest and the most persistent voice for the environment in Iran. For more than the scope of thirty years, he has managed to produce more content is his blog, Combating Desertification, than any other environmentalist on the cyberspace, depicting the ups and downs of the Iran’s environment. He has managed to open an illuminating window into the devastating reality of our country’s greatest assets and at the same time, tirelessly taking practical measures to invoke hope into many of us disillusioned and despaired of rescue.

He is a man of many titles and during his professional life, he has been appointed to important posts in the realm of environment; however, it is not how or why we dearly keep him in our hearts. He is a man of true integrity; he speaks his heart regardless of the consequences; he is humble; he is modest; he lived in a rental basement when working as a director for the “Environment Protection Organization”; he is friendly and amiable and, more than anything else, he has not forgotten who he is, where he came from and what he fights for. Mohammad Darvish is a representative of a rarity we have of always felt the lack of in our country.

His 53rd birthday is around the corner. I am happy his efforts are not unheard of and there are women and men who appreciate his precious life, which he spent for the inhabitants of our home country. May he have a splendid night in the midst of his friends and fans.

Farhad Salamatbakhsh

To address what necessity?

The Farsi version of Combating Desertification weblog has been responsible for sharing information in the domain of ecology and natural resources since 2005.  This responsibility has not been posed on the founder of the web-log (Mohammad Darvish) from outside, but stems from a profound inner passion within him. The weblog has now reached a point where it contains more than 3,000,000 words and thousands of pictures and has been updated at least for 22000 times growing into a reliable reference for a large number of activists, students and others interested in environmental issues.

On a suggestion from Mr F. Salamatbakhsh, a dear friend of mine, we now intend to make the content of the weblog accessible to English-speaking readers so as to open an illuminating window towards the ups and downs of the nature of our country, Iran. I am very grateful to those who support Farhad and me with their sincere advice and guidance in this new direction. May the god of dorcas gazelles, cheetahs, cranes and oaks help us prove worthy of such generous support.

I have dedicated this first note to Shadegan, a wetland I love very much, and that we all know is not happy (meaning of shad) these days, is it?


My special thanks to Dr. Mehdi Eshraghi (Green Blog Administration) for preparing the foundation for the English pages of Combating Desertification; also to Ms Shahnaz Moussavian who volunteered to assist Farhad by doing the technical and literary edition of his translations. I must admit I am thrilled by the sympathy and support that we have received from you. I feel overwhelmed with joy and excitement. Long live your honor and your love for your country.