I had the good fortune to go abroad my senior year with an amazing group of people, and to travel to several different countries within one semester. It was both an unforgettable passage and a test of my ability to adapt to different families and cultures. One person who made the journey even more memorable was our trustees fellow (~TA) Josh Fattal. Throughout the four months we were with him he exhibited an ability to lead while hanging back, and his life experiences added to each part of our journey.
I’m writing about Josh because it has been two years since I returned from abroad. It has also been almost two years since his unlawful detainment by the Iranian government, when he and friends Shane Bauer and Sarah Shourd were found hiking near the Iraqi-Iranian border. Despite considerable efforts by their families, friends, and the US government to free them, only Sarah has been able to return to the states. Josh and Shane have now had two trial dates pushed back without explanation. Worse still, their families have not had contact with them for over sixth months. When I think about how much I’ve grown in two years, I’m heartbroken to think that their own lives have been put on hold for no reasonable explanation.
Ladu is an Indian sweet made of flour, butter, and cardamom, and rolled into a ball. One of its traditional roles is in prayer. The sweet is offered to the gods, after which it is called Prasād. The prasād is then eaten as a blessing. For the sake of the Hikers and their families, please learn more about their situation. If you have time, watch the video in this post. Visit their site, and if you’re inspired to support these innocent people please do so. At the very least, please keep them in your heart and prayers as we await their safe return.
Ingredients (adapted from the blog Bhaatukli)
- 1 cup besan (chickpea flour…available at Indian, Middle Eastern, and health food stores)
- 1 stick unsalted butter
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 2-3 cardamom pods, crushed to release the seeds, the seeds ground into powder
- handful of raisins (optional…I skip it)
- a microwave safe container such as a pyrex loaf pan