Fath Ali Shah’s descendant holding court as Dallas Cowboys cheerleader

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What would FathAli Shah Qajar say? Nothing of course!

Saturday, October 2, 1999

Shah's great-great-granddaughter
is Dallas cheerleader cover girl

DALLAS (AP) — The great-great-granddaughter of a 19th century Iranian Shah hopes to be a role model for women in her family's homeland. However, she'd probably be arrested if she showed up in the Muslim nation wearing her skimpy cheerleader outfit. Sarah Shahi, a 19-year-old descendant of Fath Ali Shah, is one of 29 Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders for 1999-2000 and the cover girl for the famed group's new calendar. “I know social rules in Iran are very conservative and I am very respectful for that and every type of culture,” Ms. Shahi told The Dallas Morning News. “But I also would like to become an example for women in that country.”

Not likely, said Dariush Khairkhah, coordinator of the National Iranian Congress, an opposition group based in Los Angeles.“Although social rules in Iran are a little moderate nowadays, women can't show their hair or wear makeup,” Khairkhah said. “A woman is supposed to cover all her body under the threat of imprisonment.” He predicted Ms. Shahi would be sentenced to at least three months in prison for wearing her white boots, short-shorts and revealing blue top.

Ms. Shahi's ancestor was one in a long line of Shahs who ruled Iran for hundreds of years before Islamic fundamentalists overthrew the government in 1979. “I think he'd probably be pleased and happy of the advancements I have made,” Ms. Shahi said. Ms. Shahi has never been to Iran. While most of her family still lives there, her parents came to the United States more than 20 years ago.

Sara Shahi in 2007

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