ĀTAŠ (Fire), a Persian journal of news and political comment, published at Tehran 1325-39 Š./1946-60. Publication began on 29 Farvardīn 1325 Š./19 April 1946. One issue per week was printed until the autumn of the first year, thereafter one issue per day until the beginning of the second year; then it was published first as a weekly, later bi-weekly and then again a weekly journal. Its publication was terminated in 1339 Š./1960. The holder of the publication license was Sayyed Mahdī Mīrašrāfī (1287-1358 Š./1907-79), a former army officer, Majles deputy during the 15th, 16th, and 17th sessions, and a businessman and factory owner, with interest mostly in Isfahan. After the 1979 revolution, he was charged with political and financial corruption and brought before the revolutionary tribunal of Isfahan. Invocation of his links with Ayatollah Abu’l-Qāsem Kāšanī (q.v.) and their collaboration leading to the downfall of Mosaddeq (q.v.) in 1332 Š./1953 coup d’état did not win him a reprieve from death; he was executed by a firing squad in Āḏar, 1358 Š./December, 1979, in Isfahan.
The editor for the better part of the paper’s life was Šams Qanātābādī, a former Majles deputy, who heavily influenced the political orientation of the journal, and Anūšīravān Maʿālī in the journal’s last year.
Ātaš was a very controversial right-leaning journal whose licensee was known to have been involved in a host of dubious political dealings and intrigues. Having vehemently opposed Prime Minister Aḥmad Qawām (q.v.) the headquarters of the journal were set on fire in Tīr, 1326 Š./June, 1947. Again, in Āḏar, 1330 Š./December, 1951, when the offices of some right-wing and communist-affiliated papers were attacked by Mosaddeq followers, the offices of the journal were ransacked. Ātaš was banned four times in 1325 Š./1946 and 1327 Š./1948 but came out under other names, then only occasionally failed to appear before it ceased publication in Farvardīn, 1339 Š./March, 1960. A reappearance under the direct supervision of Qanātābādī after the revolution in 1979, proved unsuccessful and short-lived.
Ātaš consisted initially of eight six-column pages, later of four or eight pages measuring 36 x 50 cm. It carried illustrations and advertisements. The price was from one to two rials.
Ātaš appeared as a weekly magazine from 14 Ordībehešt 1337 Š./4 May 1958 to 22 Esfand 1337 Š./13 March 1959 in 45 issues, initially supervised by Sīāmak Pūrzand, later edited by Aḥmad Sorūš. The issues at first consisted of 40 to 48 pages each of 21 x 27 cm, later 24 x 32 cm, with colored cover. The price was 5 rials.
An incomplete set of Ātaš is preserved in the Library of Congress in Washington D. C.
According to Ṣadr-Hāšemī two other Persian journals had appeared under the name Ātaš, one at Tehran in 1303 Š./1923-24 and another outside Iran in 1309 Š./1929-30 (?), which was probably edited by the famous poet and journalist Farroḵī Yazdī (q.v.).
Jāmī, Goḏašta čerāḡ-e rāh-e āyanda ast, Tehran, 1362 Š./1983, p. 597.
M. Ṣadr-Hāšemī, Tārīḵ-ejarāyed o majallāt-e Īrān, Isfahan, 1327-32 Š./1948-53, nos. 29, 357.
L. P. Elwell-Sutton, “The Iranian Press 1941-47,” Iran 6/7, 1968, p. 71.
Originally Published: December 15, 1987
Last Updated: August 17, 2011
This article is available in print.
Vol. III, Fasc. 1, pp. 5-6