Chavez goes on to say that, while there are many extremist groups and states in the Middle East, including Iran, there are few political forces for democracy. Where to look for this reformation? She suggests a starting point in support for the Iranian resistance, the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) led by Maryam Rajavi.
It is the NCRI which has steadfastly opposed fundamentalist in opposing the Iranian regime. Iran, Chavez argues, “continues to be a major state sponsor of terrorism, as well as ruthlessly suppressing freedom for its own populace.” The nuclear deal with Iran has only served to put “much-needed cash into the hands of the ruling mullahs,” she says.
Chavez quotes Maryam Rajavi’s evidence to the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation and Trade: “A political, religious and cultural antidote is required to uproot this cancerous tumor permanently. In absence of an alternative interpretation of Islam … extremist ringleaders will portray the war against fundamentalism as a fight against Islam itself. By doing so, they will then create the most important source of nourishment for this ominous phenomenon.”
The values of the organisation that Maryam Rajavi leads will be on display, Ms Chavez argues, at a mass Free Iran rally, on July 9 in Paris. There, thousands of supporters – Christians, Jews and others joining Muslim compatriots – together with “representatives from around the world who oppose Islamic fundamentalism” – including a bi-partisan selection of senior US politicians – will celebrate modernism, that is basic liberties, including freedom of religion and gender equality.
Chavez concludes: “until we battle the ideology that has spread around the world, we will not succeed. And the most effective way to do that is to work with those, like Rajavi, who have been doing it for decades. If she is not afraid to name the danger for what it is, why should we hesitate to say that Islamic fundamentalism is a threat to us all?”