The major anti-regime protests in more than 140 cities and towns throughout Iran in late December and January, in which protesters’ slogans, like “Down with Khamenei” and “Down with Rouhani”, showed the Iranian people’s desire for the overthrow of the clerical regime in its entirety.
The West believed that the regime was stable and had popular support, and so they based their policy on appeasement and compromise. Demonization of the MEK, the main Iranian opposition movement, was part of this policy.
Now, with the popular uprising that heard protesters echoing the slogans advocated by the Iranian resistance in general, and the MEK in particular, viability of the opposition movement was proven.
Advocates of appeasement are seeing the end of this policy. The Foreign Policy article is a case in point, in that the essence of the article is that the MEK lacks popular support among the Iranians, and does not represent a viable alternative. However, the people of Iran have made their political allegiance clear.
According to the MEK, More than 100,000 activists have been executed for their defense of democracy and human rights in the last three decades. In fact, in the summer of 1988, in one of the largest crimes against humanity, more than 30,000 political prisoners, primarily MEK activists, were executed in the course of a few months in for their beliefs and principles. Talk of the massacre has been suppressed for almost three decades.
On January 2nd, Hassan Rouhani, the regime’s president, complained to French President Emanuel Macron that the MEK was causing the unrest in Iran. In their phone conversation, he asked Macron to restrict the activities of the group. Rouhani’s desperate appeal flies in the face of claims about the MEK’s lack of popularity in Iran.
MEK supporters form an extensive social network inside Iran amongst various sectors of the society like academics, intellectuals, scientists, traders and businessmen. It has the largest non-governmental social network inside Iran.
MEK activists outside of Iran, who left their homeland due to the existing suppression, are among the most educated, intellectual and productive members of the Iranian society. According to international media, more than 110,000 took part in the latest MEK gathering outside of Iran, which was held in Paris on July 1, 2017.
The 10 point plan of Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, the president of the National Council of Resistance of Iran has the support of American and European dignitaries, parliamentarians, and bipartisan Congressmen and Senators.They have taken part in the resistance’s major international gatherings in Paris over the years. In addition to scores of Republican dignitaries, a number of Democrats, including Ed Rendell, former Chairman of the Democratic Party, Howard Dean, former presidential candidate and chairman of the Democratic Party, Bill Richardson, former UN Ambassador, and Congressman Patrick Kennedy, have taken part in these events.
Regarding the inclusion of the MEK in the U.S. terror list and its subsequent delisting: the blacklisting of the MEK in the US took place on October 1997. Senior Clinton administration officials acknowledged that this was done to send “a good will gesture” to Mohammad Khatami, the president of the regime at the time. The MEK was delisted after 20 judgments by the highest courts in the UK, EU and US, which ruled unanimously that there was no evidence linking the MEK to terrorism.
According to The Wall Street Journal on May 7, 2008, “Iranian officials for years have made suppression of the MEK a priority in negotiations with western governments over Tehran’s nuclear program and other issues, according to several diplomats who were involved in the talks.”
Contrary to the article’s claims, the presence of the MEK in Iraq and its campaign to put an end to the carnage of the Iran-Iraq War is a source of credibility for the MEK. It was Khomeini who pursued the continuation of the war. The Peace Plan of the National Council of Resistance of Iran in 1986 was endorsed by more than 6,000 parliamentarians, political parties and political leaders in Europe.
The MEK’s role in the disclosure of the nuclear weapons program of the regime played a leading role in exposing various aspects of Tehran’s secret nuclear weapons program. The MEK relied on its extensive network inside Iran taking high risks in order to prevent the world’s main sponsor of terrorism from acquiring the most dangerous weapon in the world. In the past 25 years, in more than 100 revelations, the MEK exposed secret sites and hidden projects. Many senior US officials, including US President George Bush, his National Security Advisor, and his Secretary of State, declared that it was the MEK who exposed key sites of the clandestine nuclear weapons program, including Natanz and Arak.
The Iranian people’s demand for democracy, along with the adherence of the MEK to their principles for realizing the aspiration of the Iranian people, has been much more profound than what was perceived. The regime must sense that their nightmares is turning to reality.