By: Maryam Rajavi
Published in French daily Le Figaro on Feb 12, 2010*
On the day after the anniversary of the revolution, the President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, Maryam Rajavi, condemns the growing repression against the People’s Mojahedin. The West has committed a serious error in its calculations by investing in the regime’s potential to modify its behavior Former Foreign Minister Claude Cheysson asked me one day how the Iranian people, heir to a great civilization, could submit to a regime as backward as that of Khomeini? I told him that the people had not accepted the regime. The regime had been imposed on people and until now 120,000 people have been executed.
Today, eight months of uprisings prove that the Iranian nation does not accept the fanatical regime and deserves a different fate. They have demonstrated a desire to overthrow the regime and take control of their destiny. The struggle against the religious dictatorship did not begin after the sham elections in June. Rather, the sham elections exposed the deep division at the top of the regime and served as a catalyst for the outburst of suppressed popular anger.
The regime is adopting a harsher tone against an uprising that is becoming more organized by the day. The regime’s officials have apparently discovered that “an intelligent and organizing force is behind these events” and that “the PMOI [People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran] led the protests of Ashura [on December 27].
They were taken aback when they heard the slogans that appeared on the websites of our resistance movement chanted in Tehran’s streets. As such, the sharp edge of the suppression is focused on the supporters and families of the PMOI.
A large number of families of residents of Ashraf (a city where members of the PMOI reside in Iraq) and former political prisoners have been arrested and tortured in recent weeks. The regime’s officials emphasize that anyone who collaborates with the PMOI is considered mohareb (enemy of God) and therefore sentenced to death, even if the person has merely been involved in political activities.
The trend of suppression has increased. The execution of two young political opponents and the death sentences of nine more revealed signs of panic in the regime. The regime tried to discourage people from participating in protests yesterday on the anniversary of the anti-monarchical revolution on February 11.
Despite the high number of arrests, murders and injuries the uprising marks a victory for the people and rings the death knell for the regime in its entirety. The opposing internal faction certainly cannot represent the desire for change, but it can be found on the right side, provided that it distances itself from the mullahs’ Supreme Leader and the regime’s constitution.
The myth of a possible internal reform by the regime was buried for the second time in the aftermath of the sham elections. The West committed a serious mistake by investing in the regime’s ability to reform itself.
Everyone knows that the system derives great benefit from its relations with the West and even from the nuclear talks. The regime’s Supreme Leader attempts to exploit these as signs of stability.
In the midst of the uprising in October 2009, he falsely gave the impression that he would accept the Geneva deal to deliver enriched uranium, in order to take advantage of the appeasement of Western powers and also deter the United States from supporting the uprising.
We should recall that the regime acquires its suppressive equipment, wiretapping instruments, and internet filtering tools from Western companies. While innocent people are killed during protests or hanged for their alleged “support for the PMOI”, some governments continue to place restrictions on our resistance, which are shameful in the current circumstances of uprisings. Avoiding to make diplomatic and trade relations with the regime contingent on ceasing of repression – especially since the economy is monopolized by the Revolutionary Guards which is in charge of the crackdown – is beneficial only to the regime.
Make no mistake. The Iranian people do not seek support from this or that government. I only wish to invite policymakers to stop siding with the regime and avoid interfering in the struggle between the Iranian people and their torturers. The people will continue their vigorous struggle for the establishment of a pluralistic and secular republic.
Defending the Iranian people and their legitimate demands will buy honor for any country and will compensate for the past mistakes of any country. That is how we can build the basis of healthy relations with the Iranian people in the future.