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Underreported: American’s Amazing Escape From Iran Now Revealed Via WikiLeaks

Yesterday the website WikiLeaks released a massive amount of classified documents, the core of which were confidential cables sent from U.S. Embassies. There are literally hundreds of fascinating stories to be revealed from these newly released reports over the next few days and weeks, one of which is the story of a 75 year-old Los Angeles dentist of Iranian descent, who is reported to have escaped from Tehran via dramatic horseback escape.

Writing for NY Daily News, Helen Kennedy reports:

Hossein Ghanbarzadeh Vahedi, an American of Iranian descent whose sons rep popular Persian pop singers, had his passport confiscated in May 2008 when he arrived at the Tehran airport to visit the graves of his parents.

After seven months of daily appeals to the revolutionary courts, Vahedi decided to escape.

He paid two drug smugglers $7,500 to be his guides, mounted a horse and made the harrowing three-day journey that included a 14-hour overnight ride across the freezing mountains of northwestern Iran into Turkey.

Vahedi, who is on heart medications, trained for weeks by climbing in the hills north of Tehran.

The old man planned everything well except his wardrobe. At points during the zero-degree ride, “the escorts had to physically hug him to keep him warm,” the cable says.

Vahedi arrived at a U.S. consulate in Ankara and reportedly surprised the US diplomats with the great health in which he showed up, apart from some aches and pains from having fallen from a horse during his escape. Read an brief but more thorough report at The Daily News.

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