Free Iran 2022: Ambassador John Bolton expresses support for the MEK as a regime alternative
On August 4, Ambassador John Bolton delivered a speech at the Free Iran World Summit, in support of the Iranian people’s ongoing battle for freedom, democracy, and human rights. The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) holds its annual “Free Iran Summit” to talk about the prospects for regime change and to advance more assertive strategies for dealing with the Iranian regime on the international stage. The event will be broadcast live to tens of thousands of viewers around the world and feature speeches from Iranian activists and a variety of the coalition’s political supporters. It comes at a time when various conflicts between Iran and its foreign adversaries are intensifying, making it well-positioned to highlight the failures of previous policies in the United States and Europe.
“This is a critical time for the regime in Tehran and its nuclear and ballistic missile programs. It’s my view that the regime is weaker now than at any point since the revolution of 1979,” Bolton continued. “We can see that economic hardship, inflation, high unemployment, and discontent are rampant throughout the countryside among the farmers and the small business people. All segments of the population are impacted.”
Since the end of 2017, there has been almost constant unrest within the Iranian regime. The systematic start of economic protests in that December gradually evolved into calls for regime change and “death to the dictator,” as well as other overtly political demands. By mid-January 2018, the uprising had spread to well over 100 cities and towns, and the regime’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei was forced to acknowledge the People’s Mojahedin of Iran (PMOI/MEK) for taking the initiative in it.
“Demonstrations led by the MEK and others have made it plain for those with eyes that the average Iranians around the country realize that the problem is the regime itself. They also understand how the regime controls so-called elections.”
On June 18, Ebrahim Raisi was ostensibly elected to the office, despite the fact that his candidacy was effectively unopposed and the election was boycotted by the vast majority of Iranians in protest. “Ebrahim Raisi’s victory to be president was ordained by the mullahs. They left nothing to chance this time,” he explained.
Ambassador Bolton addressed the nuclear issue concerning the Iran 2015 nuclear deal, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). “The JCPOA may finally be coming to an end. And it’s critical that it stopped because if we ever allowed the sanctions to be lifted and the frozen assets to be returned, this is something that would benefit the regime in ways that you can’t even calculate simply in dollars and cents. There’s a direct correlation between the nuclear program and the regime’s survival.”
The regime’s negotiators, on the other hand, pushed for more once they caught their breath and sensed weakness. Tehran even demanded that the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) be removed from the US Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) list.
According to Bolton, “The revolutionary guards are a terrorist organization, not just through the Quds force, but externally with their threats in the region, their threats in western Europe and the United States, they’re terrorists within Iran too.”
Finally, Mr. Bolton spoke about the main Iranian opposition group and the viability to overthrow the theocratic regime. “There is a viable alternative, the alternative that the MEK and the NCRI are working inside Iran to create.” He concluded. “Far more can be done to assist the efforts of the MEK and the NCRI, all legitimate opposition groups, and to restore representative government and the rule of law in Iran.”