Nazanin: Bravely Outspoken or Entitled & Selfish?

Nazanin: Bravely Outspoken or Entitled & Selfish?

From TCW Defending Freedom… 

First, some facts. Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe was born in Iran. She lived there until she was 28, during which time she was employed by the World Health Organisation, the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, and the Japan International Co-operation Agency.

She moved to the UK in 2007 to undertake a Master’s degree at London Metropolitan University. Having completed her degree, she worked for various British charities in London, including the Centre for Public Innovation, BBC Media Action and the Thomson Reuters Foundation (TRF).

A legal opinion prepared in 2017 by Professor John Dugard and Tatyana Eatwell, of Doughty Street Chambers, and Alison Macdonald QC, of Matrix Chambers, claimed that her work for the TRF involved ‘managing journalism training abroad (not in Iran); managing TRF’s partnership with the Westminster Foundation for Democracy and other members of the Westminster Consortium, including the Department for International Development and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), on a project aimed at strengthening the parliaments of other States, at those States’ invitation.

‘Such States included Lebanon; fundraising for and managing FCO-funded projects in Morocco, Jordan and the Turks and Caicos Islands.’

Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe is clearly very bright, ambitious and well-connected. She met her husband, Richard Ratcliffe, in November 2007. They got engaged in June 2009 and married at Winchester Register Office in August 2009.

She became a British citizen in March 2013, though she remains a citizen of Iran. She would make regular trips to Iran to visit her parents. During one such trip, on April 3, 2016, she was arrested and detained by the Revolutionary Guard at Tehran airport on security grounds.

Iran does not recognise anybody with dual nationality – a fact Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe knew, because she entered the country of her birth using her Iranian passport, in keeping with Iranian law.

Presumably she knew the risk she was taking by going there. She also knew her status immediately made Britain’s negotiating position extremely challenging: Whatever the rights and wrongs of the case, the British government, which has not enjoyed strong relations with Iran in recent years, was in no position to dictate terms to Iran over the release of a person whom the Iranian regime considered to be one of its own.

I am surprised that Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe did not acknowledge this more clearly yesterday. She has spent most of her life in Iran, after all, rather than in Britain…

Lastly, I am struck by how well Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe looks. Indeed, while her husband appears pale and drained, she seems on the surface to be in pretty good health, perfectly strong and capable. This is to be welcomed, of course, but the contrast between her and her husband is noteworthy nonetheless.

This episode sits uneasily with me. Something about it is not right. Certainly, it seems that we British are not being told something about this case, even while that £400million debt is repaid via public funds.

I am certain that we will never learn the full truth of this matter and that no amount of inquiry by the Foreign Affairs select committee will bring us the truth.

All I do know is that in years gone by, other hostages have been freed under very different circumstances and have not complained publicly about why it took so long within days of returning to Britain.

Indeed, I know someone who was imprisoned by a dictatorship on trumped-up charges in the 1980s and held for longer than Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe was. When he was eventually released, he never said a word against the British government. He was just glad to be home.   Click here to read the rest of this article.

Editor writes…

I didn’t have time to watch the entire press conference but I saw some of it live, including the clip at the top of this page.  I thought I was hearing things – I could not believe that anyone in her situation could be so ungrateful.  Her husband has worked tirelessly for her release and so to hear her saying “I love you, Richard, but…”  Goodness me.  I wish them well; I hope they make their next wedding anniversary, if not the Golden Jubilee.  Watching the ten minutes or so that I watched of this press conference, my uppermost thought was this is what truly fallen human nature looks like.  Only God’s grace can save us from ourselves.  But, never mind what I thought… Watching the above clip, and reading the TCW extract, what did you think?

Is there any advice, whether straight from the pages of the Gospels, or from the writings of great saints, that might help to prevent us from thinking “me, me, me” above all else?

Comments (17)

  • Nicky Reply

    I watched that video and read the TCW article and I would say that woman is one extremely self-centred person. Yes, she a classic example of fallen human nature and doesn’t seem one bit aware of the fact.

    I notice that her husband withdrew his hand from the back of her chair as soon as she launched into her petty little diatribe against the government. She didn’t say a word of criticism against her own (Iranian) government, the people who arrested her and kept her in prison for 6 years.

    She’s not brave – even during her imprisonment I remember reports where Richard was worried about her mental health, she was so frustrated. I now think that was her having a tantrum, things not moving fast enough for her.

    She’ll keep herself in the limelight and maybe write a book and with all the publicity, she could become a millionaire in no time. My sympathy goes to her husband – in more ways than one, because as the article says, she looks radiant after 6 years in jail but he looks worn out.

    The one bible verse that came to my mind reading the introduction after seeing the video was “love thy neighbour as thyself” because she seems to have focused on the last part.

    March 22, 2022 at 11:46 am
    • Josephine Reply


      I could not agree more. I lost my respect for that woman when I watched the way she said there were five foreign secretaries and one of them should have got me out eventually – well one of them did, Liz Truss, and she refused to thank her publicly. Her husband must have felt humiliated when she spoke the way she did at the press conference. What an entitled, spoilt woman, if ever there was one.

      I’m afraid the Gospel verse that came to me watching her, was “I am the way, the truth and the life, no-one comes to the Father except through me” because only a genuine conversion to Christ would enlighten that woman’s mind and shine a light into her selfish soul.

      March 22, 2022 at 12:00 pm
      • Margaret Mary


        I agree that it was petty not to thank Liz Truss publicly for all she had done. It wasn’t Liz Truss’s fault that he foreign secretaries before her, didn’t get it done. She is obviously an entitled woman, thinks the world owes her a living. I was not impressed at all.

        March 22, 2022 at 5:41 pm
    • Faith of Our Fathers Reply

      I personally dont know much about this Woman except someone involved in Charities that can fly around the World and Stay in Top Class Hotels Etc certainly doesn’t sit well with Me .
      The Old Saying of Making your own bed and lying in it seems to be for others as far as these Selfish Human Beings are concerned.

      Surely She knew the Risks ( if their really were any ) of going in and out of Iran. My Cousin married an Egyptian whom She met in London. He hadn’t been Home for years then His Mother got ill and He said He would have to go back to Egypt to see Her . This carried risks as He hadn’t done His Required 2 Years in The Egyptian Army. He was taken by Force to serve His 2 Years. My Cousin and He who at that Time had 2 Children was left alone and got No Help from anybody as far as Governments were concerned.

      Just a little bit on Charities. Their is a Heartbreaking Advert about a Charity in Africa and it asks for £ 2 a Month. I was going to give such a small amount but first off checked to see if I could find out the Salary Paid to the C.E.O.
      It was and is £128.000 a Year . Plus wait for it — 16% Bonus of the Charity Earnings— needless to say they Never got my Measly £2 .

      March 22, 2022 at 3:12 pm
    • Laura Reply


      I noticed that as well about Richard pulling his hand away from the back of his chair. I’d love to have been a fly on the wall when they got home – I bet (I hope) he gave her a piece of his mind.

      March 22, 2022 at 6:38 pm
  • Antoine Bisset Reply

    Ms Zaghari returned to the UK in a jet chartered by the UK government. The cost would have been about £400,000, payable by UK taxpayers. Had she returned by scheduled commercial airliner the cost would have been about £8000 for First Class. It has been suggested that was done in order that she could be debriefed. during the flight. There are suggestions that she was working for MI6, that is, an agent.
    The £400m paid to Iran by the UK was legally owed to them and should have been repaid decades ago. The stupidity of the UK government in withholding repayment led to this debacle.
    Now, let’s say that you are mugged in some foreign clime. You lose your passport, money/cards and your plane ticket.
    You go to the UK Embassy and explain your plight. Do they charter a plane to take you home? Quite right, they don’t!

    March 22, 2022 at 12:08 pm
    • editor Reply


      I wonder what they would do to help someone in such circumstances. Curious…

      March 22, 2022 at 5:59 pm
    • Laura Reply

      Antoine Bsset,

      As well as the expensive flight, the government gave them a place to stay for the first few days or whenever. They’re being treated like VIPs and she just does not appreciate any of it. I’ve got a few choice names for her but none of them are fit for this Catholic blog!

      March 22, 2022 at 6:40 pm
  • Margaret Mary Reply

    One of the former foreign secretaries that she criticised has defended her on Twitter

    March 22, 2022 at 5:39 pm
  • Frankier Reply

    The first words I said to my wife was: “she certainly doesn`t look like she served six years in an, alleged, rat infested prison”. My wife commented on the fingernails.

    If I remember correctly, previous reports suggested she was being tortured. I stand to be corrected though.

    I`m thinking of applying to Iran to arrange a couple of years beauty treatment myself after seeing how well she looked.

    March 22, 2022 at 5:43 pm
    • editor Reply


      Would that beauty treatment be for your wife or your good self? Be careful how you answer that 😀

      March 22, 2022 at 5:57 pm
      • Frankier


        I would say: the both of us. 🙂

        March 23, 2022 at 1:17 am
    • Faith of Our Fathers Reply

      Well spotted Sir . At least one thing is clear. Were she Tortured they certainly didn’t use what was a Favorite Little Pastime of an Army Pretty Close to us called The British One .And that was removing the Fingernails with a Pair of Plyers . Well spotted indeed. Am sure Her soon to be Book Publisher wasn’t all that keen on the Pedicure before She left Iran.

      March 22, 2022 at 6:19 pm
  • Laura Reply

    Yes, she’s one very self-centred woman. The video and article opened my eyes to what she is really like. This video is also taking her to task and the young man making the video is Iranian himself although he doesn’t say that until near the end.

    March 22, 2022 at 6:37 pm
    • editor Reply


      Great video clip – thanks for posting.

      March 22, 2022 at 8:33 pm
  • Athanasius Reply

    I didn’t listen to her interview. The moment I saw how well she looked I knew she had never been subjected to the standard Iranian prison regime and I agree that her husband looks far more worn out than she does. I have no idea what’s behind this nonsense but I know for sure she has never spent time in prison. There is definitely more to this than the British public are being told.

    March 22, 2022 at 7:15 pm
    • editor Reply


      I doubt if she’s not spent time in prison – although she doesn’t look like she’s received the usual harsh treatment meted out to political prisoners in Iran – but you are right to wonder what is it that we’re NOT being told. Something, that’s for sure.

      March 22, 2022 at 8:35 pm

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