Mostafa Chamran Save'ei

Matthew Petti filed this request with the Federal Bureau of Investigation of the United States of America.
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Est. Completion None
No Responsive Documents


From: Matthew Petti

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, I hereby request the following records:

Records mentioning, relating to, or generated as a result of investigation or inquiry into Iranian politician Mostafa Chamran Save'ei (2 October 1932 – 21 June 1981). His death is widely-known and widely reported; as such, privacy concerns under FOIA Exemptions 6 and 7 are voided, as are any concerns under the Privacy Act. See the following article on Chamran's posthumous biography:

Chamran, born in Tehran, Iran, moved to the United States in the late 1950s for higher education. He obtained an M.S. degree from the Texas A&M University, and a PhD in electrical engineering and plasma physics in 1963 from the University of California, Berkeley. He also claims in his autobiography that he was hired as research staff scientist at Bell Laboratories and NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in the 1960s. Chamran married Tamsen Heiman, an American Muslim, in 1961. They had one daughter Roushan and three sons Ali, Jamal and Rahim. Heiman died in 2009.

Chamran was also a member of the Freedom Movement of Iran (FMI) — also known as the Liberation Movement of Iran (LMI) — led by Mehdi Bazargan, and spent some time in Cuba to receive military training.

In December 1963, Chamran left the United States for Egypt, where he was trained in guerrilla warfare and founded an anti-Shah organization called the Special Organization for Unity and Action. In 1965, he returned to the United States and founded a political group called Red Shiism along with his brother Mehdi Chamran Save'ei, who later became head of Iranian external intelligence. In 1968, Chamran founded another political group, the Muslim Students' Association of America along with Ebrahim Yazdi. In 1971, he left the United States for possibly the last time, traveling to Lebanon in order to fight alongside the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and Amal Movement. He trained militants in Algeria, Egypt, and Syria.

Chamran was heavily involved in Iranian politics during and after the 1979 revolution. He was a close confidant of the Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. During the revolution, Bazargan became prime minister and Chamran served as deputy prime minister in his cabinet. Chamran led military operations against Kurdish rebels and served as minister of defense from September 1979 to 1980. In March 1980, he was elected to the Iranian parliament (Majlis) as a Tehran representative. In May 1980, he was named Khomeini's representative to the Supreme Council of National Defense. Chamran then led the Irregular Warfare Headquarters in the Iran-Iraq War and was killed in Dehlavieh on 21 June 1981, after which he was eulogized by Khomeini as "a proud commander of Islam."

Please conduct a search of the Central Records System, including but not limited to the Electronic Surveillance (ELSUR) Indices, the Microphone Surveillance (MISUR) Indices, the Physical Surveillance (FISUR) Indices, and the Technical Surveillance (TESUR) Indices, for both main-file records and cross-reference records of both HQ and all field offices for all relevant names, agencies, organizations, companies and events including but not limited to those cited in the previous paragraphs and/or links as well as a cross-reference with the Southern Poverty Law Center to include any information provided by the SPLC. My request includes but is not limited to 137, 157, 176, 177, 183, 184, 188, and 214 files. If previously released records are available, then I request a rolling release consisting of those records while additional records are located and processed for release.

If any part of these documents are exempt from disclosure, please be sure to review and release all reasonably segregable nonexempt portions of responsive documents, as the FOIA requires.

I request that I be properly classified as a media requester. I am an investigative journalist who has written numerous articles on topics of public interest for the Asia Times, Responsible Statecraft, the National Interest, Reason Magazine, America Magazine and the Armenian Weekly, and I am requesting these documents in an editorial capacity. Please contact me if you have any questions about my media status.

The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 20 business days, as the statute requires.


Matthew Petti

From: Federal Bureau of Investigation

There are eFOIA files available for you to download.

  • E45b38f0a7c6c7caebca81020ac433a85bceb5fb5_Q94132_D2583955

From: Matthew Petti


I am writing to appeal your determination that there were no responsive records to my request #1483162-000. I am appealing the integrity of the search in its entirety, including but not limited to the failure to perform a cross-reference search. Please let me know if you have any questions, and I look forward to hearing your response.

Best regards,
Matthew Petti

  • E45b38f0a7c6c7caebca81020ac433a85bceb5fb5_Q94132_D2583955

From: Federal Bureau of Investigation

The Office of Information Policy has received your FOIA Appeal.  Please see the attached acknowledgment letter.

From: Federal Bureau of Investigation

The Office of Information Policy has made its final determination on your FOIA Appeal Number A-2021-01341 .  A copy of this determination is enclosed for your review, along with any enclosures, if applicable.  Thank you.