Insider news & Analysis in Iran
Who are the MEK? Part 1

By INU Staff

INU - The majority of people across the world recognise that the Iranian Regime is a violent, totalitarian, dictatorship with no respect for the rights of its people or the rest of the world. However, those people wrongly claim that the Iranian Regime has no viable alternative and that it is, therefore, acceptable to continue doing business with them.

The thing is that the Regime has a viable alternative in the form of the oldest, largest, and most popular resistance organization in Iran, which has fought two separate regimes since it was founded in 1965. That is the People’s Mojahedin of Iran (PMOI/MEK).

In order to help you earn more about the MEK, we have created an in-depth series. In this part, we will give you a brief overview of the MEK’s history.

The MEK was founded by three Iranian engineers in September 1965, who believed that Islam is a modern, tolerant, and democratic religion that had been hijacked by the Shah to abuse the people. The MEK hoped to replace the Pahlavi monarchy, which refused any democratic reforms and had a sickening human rights record, with a democratic government.

After the 1979 Revolution, the Shah fled Iran after being deposed, but sadly, the MEK’s fight was not over. Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini returned from exile to subvert the people’s revolution for himself to create a theocracy with himself as the unchallenged ruler. A king in all but name.

So the MEK was forced to switch gears and oppose the Ayatollah in favour of a democratic government.

In 1980, the MEK held a demonstration in Tehran against Khomeini’s growing despotism and over 200,000 people turned up. Khomeini, fearing that the MEK could be his downfall, sent in his Hezbollah thugs to attack the MEK supporters. MEK leader Massoud Rajavi shouted over machine-gun fire, explosions, and ambulances sirens that the MEK was not “communist”, but rather fighting for a free and independent Iran. Still, Hezbollah attacked the MEK supporters, killing five and injuring hundreds.

Despite this, the MEK grew stronger and by July of that year, Khomeini was openly speculating about his possible defeat, declaring the MEK to be enemies of the state. Thus, he ordered his Revolutionary Guards to escalate their attacks on the MEK.

On June 20, 1981, the MEK organised protests across Iran against the mullahs’ rule, with over 500,000 Iranians turning up to the Tehran demonstration alone. Khomeini ordered Hezbollah to block the streets and fire into the crowds, which killed hundreds and injured thousands. Immediately afterwards, thousands of MEK supporters were arrested. The next day, Khomeini ordered that hundreds of arrested MEK supporters be executed, even teenagers.

Over the next 37 years, over 120,000 MEK members would be killed by the mullahs and this bloodbath removed any legitimacy that the Regime may have once had with the Iranian people.

In 2019, the MEK is still fighting to bring democracy to Iran, whatever the cost to themselves, and for that, they have the support of the Iranian people.

 

In our next part, we will learn about the Regime’s attempts to destroy the MEK.

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