Ken Blackwell is the former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Human Rights Commission. In his July 5th article for American Thinker, entitled, “An Iranian Voice Republicans and Democrats Should Heed” Mr. Blackwell states, “It may not seem so, but Republicans and Democrats absolutely can find common ground on this area of policy. In a very meaningful sense, some already have. If you look to Paris just about a week prior to the Cleveland RNC, you will see Republican and Democratic policymakers, including officials from several presidential administrations, standing side-by-side to show common cause in the fight against Islamic terrorism.”

On July 9, in Paris, representatives from both the Republican and Democratic parties will take part in an enormous convention, larger than either the RNC or DNC: Free Iran”, organized by the National Council of Resistance of Iran, the democratic Iranian opposition. The Bipartisan American Delegation, along with delegations from the EU and various nations of the world, will be joined by human rights and women’s rights activists, religious leaders from the United States, Europe, and Islamic countries, as well as representatives of the moderate Syrian opposition and other anti-Islamist movements.

The NCRI’s fight against Islamic terrorism and extremism has broad appeal, keeping it from being packaged as a partisan issue.  No single president, political party, or even nation can take on Islamic terrorism on their own.  Cooperation and coalition building will lead to success. 

“Whoever occupies the White House next year will need help from both inside and outside his or her own administration to do all that will be necessary to undermine fundamentalism – like standing up to the egregious conduct of the Iranian regime, fighting the Islamic State, facilitating the removal of embattled regional dictators like Bashar al-Assad, and making sure that the peoples of that region have strong, recognizable alternatives to the extremist groups currently vying for dominance.” Ken Blackwell declares. 

He further says that, As the Republican and Democratic Parties prepare speeches on global affairs and foreign policy ahead of their conventions, they could learn a thing or two from the NCRI’s rally, in particular from NCRI President Maryam Rajavi, a devout and profoundly anti-fundamentalist Muslim woman leader. With a clear understanding of Islamic extremism, she has maintained that moderate democratic Islam is the antidote to the violent conduct of extremists under the cloak of Islam.”

But, the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI or MEK), the main constituent of the NCRI, has paid a heavy price: 120,000 of the activists have been executed by Islamic extremists ruling in Iran during the past 30 years.

The presence of Democratic and Republican representatives at the “Free Iran” convention means cooperation between parties, and that they are prepared to convey the perspective of  President Maryam Rajavi to their colleagues regarding moderate Muslims in the Middle East, and that the destructive role of extremism can be halted.  Her ten-point plan includes the establishment of truly democratic governance in the Middle East, the separation of religion and state, an end to institutional misogyny, and many other principles that will appeal to Americans, along with all civilized peoples of the world.

Mr. Blackwell hopes that, “coming so close on the heels of the NCRI rally, the Republican and Democratic National Conventions will put more focus on these principles that can bring us together in such an important common cause. The message from Paris is one that both conventions would be wise to heed.”