MEK Iran: A Great Blow to Khamenei
The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), and the People’s Mujahedin of Iran (PMOI / MEK Iran), reported that the Iranian regime did not expect to have the lowest voter turnout in its 42-year history when it holds its presidential election on Friday. Certain Iranian leaders and state media outlets had recognized this.
Raisi absolute commitment to secure the dictatorship’s future
Ebrahim Raisi has been identified as a candidate for President by the regime’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei for months. Raisi’s preference originates from his absolute commitment to the supreme leader and his willingness to jeopardize the security and well-being of regular Iranians in order to secure the dictatorship’s future.
Raisi was selected to lead the country’s judiciary in 2019, and his inclination for political violence was put to the test when a nationwide uprising erupted out in November 2019, a follow-up to similar protests in January 2018.
Widespread torture of political detainees
The regime’s response to the latter uprising was one of the most draconian crackdowns on dissent since the regime’s early years. Raisi, as head of the judiciary, was a key figure in the crackdown, particularly the widespread torture of political detainees, as outlined in an Amnesty International report from September 2020.
The all-out electoral boycott by “Resistance Units”
MEK-affiliated activist collectives known as “Resistance Units” have been supporting the idea of an all-out electoral boycott in recent weeks. In only one month in April, activists raised posters, sprayed graffiti, and conducted protests in over 250 locations across Iran.
MEK supporters inside and outside of Iran were urging citizens to “vote for regime change” by avoiding the polls and denying the ruling system any appearance of legitimacy.
Iranian are rejecting the entire system
Iranian people especially during the past few months leading to the sham election in their protests included chants such as “We have seen no justice; we will not vote anymore.”
The message is that Iranians from all walks of life are rejecting not only the presidential election but also the entire underlying system, in favor of a platform analogous to the MEK and NCRI’s.
Raisi’s reputation in the 1988 massacre of political prisoners
Considering all of this, Tehran’s disregard for human rights has likely never been more visible than it is now, as the supreme leader is chosen Raisi as its new president. Raisi’s involvement in the crackdowns following November 2019 is probably one reason for this, but his participation in the 1988 massacre of political prisoners is the main source of his infamy.
Those executions are widely considered to be the largest crime against humanity of the late twentieth century, and Raisi, as one of four people in Tehran’s “death commission” at the time, bears as much blame as anyone for the roughly 30,000 executions that took place over just a few months.
Khamenei resolved to centralize power
The NCRI has made it plain in its election commentary that Raisi was picked to conduct a mostly unopposed campaign because of his history. The NCRI claims that as the Resistance movement gained traction, Khamenei resolved to centralize power in the hands of officials who are most familiar with political violence.
The ramifications of that challenge will almost certainly be determined in part by the role that the international community decides to play in future conflicts between the Iranian government and a population that is increasingly supportive of organized resistance.
Tags: 1988 Massacre, Iran human rights, Iran Opposition, Iran Protests, MEK, MEK Network, Mujahedin-e Khalq, National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), People's Mojahedin organization of Iran, PMOI