Indeed, other regime officials have contradicted this by expressing fears that the number of highly disadvantaged is growing because of the ongoing economic crisis in Iran, made worse by the coronavirus crisis. They believe that this “army of the poor” will soon lead an uprising against the regime that could well overthrow the mullahs.
And the MEK highlights how the regime and Khamenei could support the people through the immense wealth hidden in foundations linked to regime insiders, but instead, that money is spent on terrorism and the military, with the regime recently launching a military satellite that doesn’t even solve security issues in the country.
The MEK wrote: “[Khamenei] still went ahead with it, using the country’s wealth as finance putting even more pressure on the worst offer in the country. He tried to emphasize that the key goal of the satellite program was to produce a satellite that could reach a 36,000-kilometer orbit. This is his aim, which won’t be reached without vast amounts of finance going into the project which won’t bring any wealth to the country as a whole. He is hoping that this project will build more support for his regime even though the economic plight of the country is far more important and he hasn’t shown any intention of relieving the burden on those suffering the most.”
The MEK then pointed out similarities between Khamenei’s behavior and that of regime founder Ruhollah Khomeini back in the 1980s. Khomeini let the Iran-Iraq war continue, so he had an excuse not to tackle the economic problems. After he was forced to accept peace by the MEK, he massacred 30,000 MEK political prisoners.
The MEK wrote: “Despite the fragility of Iran in these times Khamenei is trying his best to keep his regime in power. He has ignored the coronavirus and continued with his agenda. He has allowed people to return to work in the hope they would be able to support themselves completely, ignoring the possibility of a surge in coronavirus cases.”
They noted that although the crisis has already devastated 44,300 families, Khamenei aims to continue the success of his military satellite launch; hoping the Iranian people would see that as far more important than the coronavirus. (They won’t.)
The MEK explained that Iranian authorities doubt this will be successful, citing a member of the upcoming parliament from Khamenei’s own faction.
On May 7, Ahmad Naderi, told the state-run daily Resalat that he is concerned about the consequences of the supreme leader’s action and sees anti-regime uprisings on the horizon that will be bigger than anything in Iran’s recent history, making the December 2017 and November 2019 uprisings look like “child’s play”.