President of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Hassan Rouhani, has just been re-elected for his second term. He was described by President Obama and his administration as a moderate. It was Obama’s way of “selling” the idea of the nuclear deal to the sceptics. However, it became very clear that Iran did not respect the nuclear deal as it carried on with the same malign activities it was doing before the deal was signed.
And now we are hearing the same rhetoric about Rouhani being a moderate. His rival candidate was a hardliner, but looking at both men it is very hard to use the description “moderate”.
During his first term, the so-called “moderate” Rouhani presided over 3,000 executions. There were countless dissidents that were tortured, harassed and / or imprisoned. During his first term, the country had the highest execution rate per capita in the world.
In any case, Rouhani can make as many promises as he wants, but he does not have the power to be able to keep them. The Supreme Leader of Iran has the most control, followed by the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC). The Iranian economy is controlled by the IRGC and not the president. Hassan Rouhani is essentially a tool used by the Supreme Leader.
He was used by the Supreme Leader during the negotiations for the nuclear deal. This led to Iran securing the release of dozens of billions of frozen assets and a partial lifting of sanctions. Most of the money went to the IRGC who in turn used it to pay for terrorism abroad. For example, huge sums were spend on thousands of mercenaries that have propped Syrian dictator Assad up on behalf of Iran. It also funded Hezbollah and for military interventions in other countries in the region.
With each day that goes by, we are hearing more information indicating that the elections in Iran were rigged. The regime claimed that there was a huge turnout, but this was not the case – many polling stations were empty, but the regime sent reporters to places where they have ensured there is a huge crowd.
Dissidents in Iran urged people not to vote before the election. The People’s Mujahedeen of Iran (PMOI) spread posters across cities calling on the people to not vote for any of the corrupt candidates.
In the Nato-style coalition with the US, Israel and Saudi Arabia, the Iranian opposition can play a big part in curbing the regime’s activities. The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) knows the Iranian regime inside-out. They all want the same – the regime to be replaced by a democratic government so that the people can deserve the most basic of rights that they have been denied for so long.