Dr. Alejo Vidal Quadras,Iran Diplomat Terrorist,Iran Protests,Iran Terrorism,Maryam Rajavi,MEK,MEK Support,Mujahedin-e Khalq,NCRI,PMOI

Dr. Alejo Vidal Quadras

Former Vice-President of European Parliament Urges the West to Take Stronger Action Against the Iranian Regime

Dr. Alejo Vidal Quadras

Dr. Alejo Vidal Quadras, former vice president of the European Parliament and the president of the International Committee In Search of Justice (ISJ)

Alejo Vidal-Quadras, the former Vice-President of the European Parliament, wrote an op-ed for Eurasia Review on the need for international sanctions against Iran.

Vidal-Quadras outlined the European Union’s recent decision to impose sanctions against the Iranian Intelligence Ministry (MOIS) after it plotted an assassination attempt against an Iranian dissident living in Copenhagen.

He also charted the string of terror plots that have emerged from the MOIS over the last 12 months, including a failed attempt to detonate a car bomb at an event in Paris, and the arrest of two Iranian operatives that planned to attack a compound in Albania where 3,000 members of the Iranian opposition group, the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK) live.

Following the attempted terror attacks, France expelled several diplomats and froze MOIS assets. An Iranian diplomat believed to be the mastermind behind the foiled plot, Assadollah Assadi, is awaiting prosecution in Belgium.

The French Government Seizes Iranian Assets Over This Summer’s Foiled Terror Attack

The resulting investigation launched by French authorities found that senior members of the Iranian leadership were behind the Paris plot. It found that the Iranian regime’s diplomatic infrastructure, including European embassies and consulate buildings, had been involved in the planning process and harbored terrorists who would carry out the attacks.

Vidal-Quadras quotes a Belgian judiciary official who told reporters,

“nearly all Iranian diplomats in Europe are in fact members of the Iranian secret service.”

A Move Welcomed by the Iranian Opposition

Following the EU’s announcement on Tuesday that it would be imposing sanctions against the MOIS, “the NCRI quickly released a statement calling for further action,” Vidal-Quadras writes.

The National Council of Resistance of Iran, or NCRI, is the umbrella group of the MEK and, along with its leader, president-elect Maryam Rajavi, is one of the most outspoken critics of the Iranian regime.

Its statement in response to the EU sanctions read,

“it is time for the EU to adopt a firm policy towards the mullah’s regime by expelling all of its mercenaries and agents from Europe.”

https://twitter.com/amsafavi/status/1085116260680126464

The First Step Towards Meaningful Action

Vidal-Quadras echoed the words of the MEK and the Iranian opposition. He called the sanctions, “a positive sign,” and, “a symbol of an ongoing trend toward greater recognition of the Iranian threat.”

However, Vidal-Quadras acknowledged that “that trend is still proceeding at too slow a pace. Meanwhile, the danger is growing much more quickly.” He cited the presence of further terrorist plots targeting Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxemburg, and Germany that were disrupted in 2018. He said, “Europe cannot count on its luck holding out over the long term, especially if lawmakers fail to take measures that will truly disrupt the regime’s terrorist infrastructure.”

The terror attacks have been targeted against the MEK and the Iranian resistance movement. As domestic protests increase in volume and intensity, the Iranian regime is lashing out at the MEK abroad. As a result, Vidal-Quadras says,

“the clerical regime is desperate to undermine any and all networks of support for domestic activism.”

“Under these circumstances,” Vidal-Quadras continued, “Iranian expatriate communities in every corner of the world are potential targets, and their host countries are in severe danger of suffering collateral damage alongside the dire insult of having their autonomy violated by terrorists dispatched by the Iranian government.”

It is in this context that Vidal-Quadras calls for “the expulsion of Iranian diplomats, the implementation of stronger sanctions, and other such firm policies.” He argues, these measures, “will not only help defend the Western world against Iran-backed terrorism, but it will also help the Iranian people to even more strongly assert their demands for civic freedoms and democratic governance.”

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Maryam Rajavi visits the European Parliamen

Former European Minister of Poland Calls on International Community to Support MEK in Op-Ed

Maryam Rajavi visits the European Parliamen

European Lawmakers led by , Ryszard Czarnecki the then Vice President of the European Parliament receive Maryam Rajavi, the President-elect of the Iranian Opposition for a meeting on the occasion of the Human Rights Day in the European Parliament-06 December 2017

On Tuesday, January 15th, a former European Minister of Poland and sitting Member of the European Parliament, Ryszard Czarnecki, penned an op-ed for International Policy Digest. The piece, entitled ‘Western Leaders Must Join Iranian Activists in Recognizing Their Movement’s Potential’, calls on governments around the world to lend their support to the only viable democratic alternative in Iran, the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), led by Maryam Rajavi, the president-elect of the Iranian opposition, which the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK) is the principal member to.

A Mobilised Population

Czarnecki praised the work of the Iranian resistance units operating inside Iran to promote the Iranian resistance movement. They have worked tirelessly, “placing posters in public places throughout Tehran and other cities, identifying martyrs by name and reiterating the slogans associated with their cause.”

The President-elect Maryam Rajavi was acutely aware of the capabilities of the resistance cells in Iran. Last year, she predicted a “year full of uprisings.” 2018 lived up to her predictions.

In 2018, there were a total of 9,596 individual protests, affecting all 31 of Iran’s provinces and more than 142 towns and cities.

MEK-Iran: Our Iran Released Summary of 2018 Protest Movement

As Maryam Rajavi predicted, 2018 was a pivotal moment for the Iranian opposition movement. For the first time, the mullahs seemed to acknowledge that the MEK was behind the surge in opposition protests. Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei blamed the MEK for the surge in street protests and pointed the finger at their shrewd use of social media to organise protests and connect their supporters as the source of their influence.

Iran State Media Acknowledges MEK Can Topple Regime

This represented a break from the regime’s traditional propaganda narrative which had maintained that the MEK was a fringe movement, with little to no support within Iran, “and incapable of affecting change on a large scale,” Czarnecki writes.

2019 is unlikely to provide the mullahs with any respite. In the opening days of the year, bank customers, municipal workers, and car buyers took to the streets to protest. The regime’s failure to address the economic crisis and its “chronic inattention to public welfare,” means that the conditions that gave rise to the protests in 2018 are still very much present in the Iranian landscape in 2019.

However, Czarnecki writes, “what is much less clear is whether the international community will prove similarly responsive.”

The Iranian Regime is a Threat to Western Democracy

The Iranian regime’s policies do not play out in a bubble and are not limited to Iran. The mullahs desire to influence regional politics make the clerical regime a threat to Western democracies and their national security interest.

Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) is active across the Middle East, including in Yemen, Syria, Iraq, and Lebanon. The mullahs have also been accused of funnelling money and weapons to militia groups across the region.

Czarnecki predicts, “the footprint of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps will deepen all across the Middle East, and can affect the situation in the West, where foreign supporters of the PMOI (MEK) were targeted several times over the past year.”

Czarnecki is referring to the high-profile terrorist attacks that Iran’s Ministry of Intelligence (MOIS) planned in Paris, Albania, and the US, and the assassination plots that unfolded in the Netherlands and Denmark.

The regime has demonstrated that its actions are not limited to Iran, but place citizens from across the West at risk.

“The situation demands international attention, particularly in the form of economic sanctions and diplomatic isolation aimed at limiting the regime’s ability to project force beyond its borders and to crack down on dissent inside them,” Czarnecki writes.

The work of the MEK’s resistance units offers an opportunity for international opponents to the Iranian regime to facilitate meaningful change in Iran. While the protest movement is expanding, the Iranian regime is in a vulnerable position. Should the MEK receive “earnest and sustained support from the international community,” Czarnecki writes, “it may soon be able to achieve the long-sought goal of regime change.”

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Maryam Rajavi's quote on Fox News

Iran’s Regime is “a Lot Weaker Than You Would Expect”

Maryam Rajavi's quote on Fox News

Fox news quoting Maryam Rajavi, leader of Iran opposition in response to recent remarks by Secretary Pompeo emphasizing an end to the U.S. policy of appeasement towards the mullahs in Iran.

During coverage of US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s nine-nation tour of the Middle East, Fox News aired Pompeo’s speech he made on Friday, January 11th.

In the speech, the Secretary of State denounced the Iranian regime’s “malign activity” as “creating enormous instability here in the region”. Pompeo announced that the US would arrange a world summit on Iran, to be held in Poland in February 2019, where the international community would explore avenues of curbing the regime’s influence in the region.

Fox News interviewed Mark Dubowitz, CEO of the think-tank Foundation for Defense of Democracies, who spoke about his recent visit to the Middle East and meetings he had with top leaders in the region.

Dubowitz described leaders’ concerns about the Iranian regime and its “destructive and malign activities.”

He said, “dozens of countries, including the Europeans, understand, the Iranian regime is engaged in assassinations, support for terrorism, and building ballistic missiles,” he continued, “not to mention brutal human rights abuses within Iran.”

MEK, The Largest Opposition Group

Fox News then aired footage of the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran’s (MEK’s) annual Grand Gathering, held outside Paris. Eric Shawn, the Fox News host, described how the Iranian regime had plotted to bomb the event, attended by more than 100,000 MEK supporters and allies from across the world.

The French Government Confirms “Without any Doubt” the Iranian Regime was Behind the Foiled Terror Attack

Shawn pointed out that among those in attendance were several former US officials, including Trump’s lawyer and former New York mayor, Rudy Giuliani, who, Shawn said, “speak every year,” at the event.

Fox News aired comments from the Iranian opposition leader, Maryam Rajavi, in response to Pompeo’s speech in Cairo. Mrs. Rajavi said,

“the US Secretary of State reiterated that when America partners with enemies such as the mullahs, ‘they advance’ gaining access to weapons of mass destruction, violations of human rights, export of fundamentalism, and terrorism,” which Ms. Rajavi says, “are the four pillars holding up the theocratic regime ruling Iran.”

Maryam Rajavi President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), emphasized, “the ultimate solution for discarding the mullahs’ religious fascism is changing this illegitimate regime at the hands of the Iranian people and Resistance.”

Shawn put the question to Dubowitz, asking “can that ever be done?”

“These regimes are actually a lot weaker than you would expect,” Dubowitz asserted. “Hopefully within our lifetime, we will see the end of the Islamic Republic, which is the best guarantee for global security.”

 

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Javad Zarif,, Iranian regime's FM

Europe’s Sanctions Are Welcome, Now A Change In Policies Is Required.

Javad Zarif,, Iranian regime's FM

Javad Zarif, Iranian regime’s top diplomat, whose staff have now been arrested or expelled from several European countries, attacks EU as a escape goat to justify acts of terrorism in EU soil.

Europe introduced its own set of sanctions against Iran in what represented a small shift in policy towards the Iranian regime. Not since before the Iran nuclear deal has Europe employed sanctions against the Iranian Regime. The move signifies that European leaders may finally be awakening to the fact that the Iran nuclear deal has not altered Iran’s behavior and the Iranian regime is still the worlds leading state sponsor of terrorism.

The sanctions are rooted in the terrorist threat Iranian regime poses

In 2018, the Iranian regime’s state-sponsored terrorist machine increased its output dramatically. In March, a pair of Iranian regime agents were detained in Albania after it emerged the regime has orchestrated a bomb attack against the members of the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK), the principal opposition group living in exile outside the Albanian capital of Tirana.

Shortly afterward, in June, the regime launched its most ambitious plan of the year. An Iranian diplomat working out of the regime’s embassy in Vienna provided a Belgian-Iranian couple with explosives and sent them to Paris to detonate a bomb at the MEK’s annual Grand Gathering.

The French Government Confirms “Without any Doubt” the Iranian Regime was Behind the Foiled Terror Attack

The event was attended by more than 100,000 people, including dignitaries from the UK, the US, France, Germany, and Italy, amongst other nations. Belgian authorities foiled the attack at the eleventh hour, preventing hundreds and thousands of potential deaths. Following the attack, the French government froze assets belonging to the Iranian Intelligence Ministry and expelled two diplomats from the country.

In October, Denmark announced that it had discovered an Iranian plot to assassinate a political dissident living on Danish soil. The revelation prompted an outcry among the Danish public as protestors gathered in the capital to call for a firm response to Iranian aggression.

Protestors Gather in Copenhagen to Call for a Firm Response to Iranian Aggression

Most recently, the Dutch government revealed that it believes the Iranian government was behind the assassination of two Dutch citizens. The Dutch government said this week that it had evidence that the Iranian government had hired hitmen to carry out the assassinations.

Europe’s sanctions target the Ministry of Intelligence (MOIS)

Europe’s latest sanctions target the MOIS, including the director general of the Iranian intelligence agency, Saeid Hashemi Moghadam. The targets have had their European assets frozen and have been added to Europe’s terror list.

In response to the announcement, Iranian regime’s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif while admitting the regime’s role in terrorist attempts attacked the EU as regime’s usual way, to avoid responding to the crimes it has committed. Wall Street Journal Editorial, on its Wednesday Jauary 9 edition, writes:

“The new sanctions target an Iranian intelligence unit and two of its agents, including deputy minister and director general of intelligence Saeid Hashemi Moghadam. They have been added to Europe’s terror list and their assets will be frozen. Iranian Foregin Minister Javad Zarif on Twitter tried to justiry the attacks: “Accusing Iran won’t absolve Europe of responsibility for harboring terrorist”- his preferred word for anyone who opposes the regime.”

What is the next step?

While the sanctions against the MOIS unit and senior officials in the department are welcome, they will not stop the Iranian regime’s terrorist activities.

To protect its citizens and national security interests, Europe must follow up with firmer action. Continuing to do business with the Iranian regime, whose economy is controlled by the Islamic Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) and other repressive organizations, any trade in Iranian markets will indirectly fund terrorist activities, including similar attempts trying to target the opposition.

The regime has demonstrated that it has little or no regard for foreign sovereignty or the safety of European citizens. It will use terrorism as a weapon against its enemies, regardless of who is hurt or killed in the process.

The Iranian opposition has recommended blacklisting the MOIS and the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, closing Iran’s embassies on European soil, refraining from issuing visas to the regime leadership, expelling Iranian agents and mercenaries, and ending ministerial meetings between European and Iranian officials.

The Iranian Resistance Outlines Strategies for Confronting the Regime’s Terror Activites

Expelling Iranian diplomats and closing Iranian diplomatic offices and buildings must become a priority. Investigations in the wake of the 2018 terror attacks demonstrated that Iranian embassies on foreign soil were hotbeds of terror activities and were instrumental in the planning and execution of terror attacks.

Europe should follow their sanctions against the MOIS with tough economic sanctions, restricting Iranian trade and preventing companies from doing business with the ruthless and repressive regime.

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Stef Blok the Netherlands MFA

Iranian Regime Paid Hitmen to Assassinate Dissidents, Dutch Government Says

Stef Blok the Netherlands MFA

Stef Blok, the Netherlands Foreign Minister, revealed the role of the Iranian regime in two assassination that took place in 2015 and 2017 in the Netherlands.

On Tuesday, the 8th of January, the Telegraph’s Middle East correspondent published an article on the company’s website revealing the Iranian regime’s nefarious dealings with criminal gangs in a plot to assassinate political dissidents living in the Netherlands.

According to the Dutch government’s findings, the Iranian clerical regime hired two gangs to kill a pair of dissidents living in the Netherlands. The findings come just several months after the EU introduced sanctions on regime officials over their involvement in the attempted assassination on a political dissident in Denmark.

The Dutch government revealed that during an investigation into the murder of two Dutch citizens, it found links between the assassins and the Iranian regime.

The pair were both gunned down by hitmen who fled in stolen BMWs. The families of the victims involved had long-suspected that the Iranian regime was involved in the killings, but until now the Dutch government had refused to speculate.

The Dutch government explained its decision to withhold the information in a statement. The Foreign Ministry said it had “strong indications that Iran was involved in the assassinations” but that it kept the matter hidden “in the interests of facilitating this common EU action against Iran.”

Last year, the Dutch government expelled two Iranian diplomats from the country, although it refused to say whether or not the decision was linked to the assassinations.

Iran’s History of Violence

This is not the first time the regime has hired international gangsters to carry out the murder of its political opponents.

In 2011, the United States government accused the regime of hiring a Mexican cartel to assassinate the Saudi Arabian ambassador in Washington D.C.

The People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK) welcomed the EU’s introduction of sanctions against players in the Iranian Ministry of Intelligence (MOIS). In a statement, the MEK called them a “positive but important step in the face of the regime’s state terrorism.”

However, the episode that played out on Dutch soil further demonstrates that any nations which have an Iranian embassy operating on their soil, cannot guarantee the safety of their citizens.

Embassies have been implicated in various state-sponsored assassination attempts and terror attacks, including a planned attack on the MEK’s Grand Gathering in Paris.

The only way for a nation to truly ensure the safety of its citizens is to follow Albania’s lead and expel diplomats. Only through a complete cessation of Iranian diplomatic activities in Europe can EU nations protect their citizens from the ever-present threat of terrorism and murder.

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Claas Relotius,Disinformation by MOIS,Disinformation Campaign,Iran Diplomat Terrorist,MEK,Mujahedin-e Khalq,National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI),NCRI,PMOI,Reza Aaron Merat,Spiegel,The Guardian

Claas Relotius, Spiegel's recently sacked writer

The Western Media Is in the Midst of an Integrity Crisis

Claas Relotius, Spiegel's recently sacked writer

Claas Relotius, an editor of Der Spiegel Magazine in Germany that had been providing false and fabricated news in his articles in the Spiegel

In what has been called the “biggest fraud scandal in journalism since the Hitler diaries”, Claas Relotius, an editor of Der Spiegel Magazine in Germany, has been stripped of his journalism awards by CNN and other outlets.

During his seven-year career at Der Spiegel, Relotius published lies in his stories, often not bothering to visit and interview the places and subjects he wrote about. His features were at times, pure fabrication, and the case has rocked European journalism to its foundations.

A Systematic Campaign of Lies

Responding to this scandal, the International Committee in Search of Justice (ISJ) published its own statement. While it unequivocally and forcefully condemned Relotius’ behavior, it posed the striking question: how does his conduct differ from other deliberate international misinformation campaigns?

Relotius pedaled falsehoods and invented feature stories, but he is far from the only international journalist doing so at this moment. In recent months and years, The Guardian, The Independent, Channel 4 News, and Al Jazeera have also published pieces based on information and sources from within the Iranian Ministry of Intelligence (MOIS), which is viciously hostile to opposition groups like the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK).

Each article has spouted the same falsehoods and lies that originated through the Iranian propaganda and state-run media networks. These “journalists”, like Relotius, publish this information as though it is fact, without fact-checking or investigating the merit of their sources.

Former Vice-President of the European Parliament: The Guardian has Stabbed the Free Press in the Back

Most recently, Arron Reza Merat published a hit piece against the MEK in the British newspaper, The Guardian. He repeated regime accusations of murder and kidnap, often levied at the group, all of which have been extensively disproved in the public sphere.

The Committee of Anglo-Iranian Lawyers Issue a Statement on the Guardian’s MEK Hit Piece

Merat’s sources were MOIS affiliates who introduced themselves as former MEK members.

In Contrast to the International Community

One sign that Merat’s piece failed to paint an accurate picture of the situation in Albania is that a month after the piece was published, the Albanian government expelled the Iranian diplomats working out of the regime’s embassy in Tirana for conspiring against the MEK.

Following their expulsion, US president Donal Trump expressed his gratitude to the Albanian government for its “steadfast efforts to stand up to Iran and to counter its destabilizing activities and efforts to silence dissidents around the globe”.

Albania’s Decision to Expel Regime Diplomats is Welcomed by the Trump Administration

Given the increasing pressure the clerical regime faces in Iran through MEK-organised protests and resistance group activities, the regime is particularly eager to find international journalists willing to publish hit pieces against the opposition group.

The ISJ statement, penned by Alejo Vidal-Quadras, the former Vice-President of the European Parliament, concluded that “it’s time to break the silence vis-à-vis the Iranian regime’s malign influence in the Western press”. He added, “the media outlets responsible for disseminating the Iran articles based on distorted facts and dishonest sources seem unwilling to do so. Shame on them.”

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Ahvaz Steel Workers continue their protests in the its 2nd month

The MEK’s Resistance Units are Breathing New Life into Iran’s Opposition Movement

Ahvaz Steel Workers continue their protests in the its 2nd month

Archive Photo-The second week of protest by Ahvaz Steelworkers against the repressive regime.

On Sunday, January 6th, Hassan Mahmoudi penned a piece for tsarism exploring the leaders of the Iranian protest movement. The piece, entitled ‘Who is Leading and Organizing the Iranian Strikes’, looked at the escalating protest movement in Iran and the driving forces behind the expanding opposition movement.

Mahmoudi began, “over the past 12 months, a single week hasn’t passed where some sort of protest and demonstration has not taken place somewhere in the country.”

He describes how dissent and public fury has seeped across Iranian industries, bringing truckers, market stall owners, teachers, sugar workers, steelworkers, and farmers into the streets in protest. “Virtually every Iranian group and community has expressed its discontent with the current political structure,” Mahmoudi says.

Their grievances have been wide-ranging, but several themes have reared their heads in the Iranian workforce time and time again; corruption, economic mismanagement, unpaid wages, inflation, and reduced Iranian purchasing power.

In typical regime fashion, the mullahs have responded to the growing protests with violence and repression. Most recently, Esmail Bakshi, one of the labor activists arrested in Shush during the strikes carried out by the Haft Tappeh sugarcane workforce, endured extensive physical and psychological torture in regime custody. His injuries were so severe he had to be transferred to hospital.

At a protest among farmers in Isfahan on January 2nd, regime agents used tear gas and fired live rounds in the air in an attempt to disperse the crowds, and earlier in the year, when Iran’s truck drivers were striking, the regime threatened them with imprisonment and even execution.

The Organizing Force Behind Iran’s Protest Movement

While many regime officials still dismiss the protest organizers as “opportunists and anti-revolutionaries who want to take advantage of political turmoil inside the country,” there has been an increasing acceptance among the regime’s leadership of the reality that the Iranian opposition is a well-organized political force.

Members of Parliament like Naser Mousavi Larijani are beginning to point the finger at the People’s Mojahedin Organisation of Iran (PMOI / MEK), and the group is increasingly receiving coverage from the Iranian state-run media outlets.

The MEK has been relentless in their organization of protests. They publish details of protests through their social media outlets and have been putting up posters across the country.

MEK Resistance Units Are Organizing a Revolution

The group has an abundance of resistance units, from Tehran to Mashhad, Kermanshah, and Ahvaz. Many draw attention to the opulence that the regime leadership enjoys while much of the Iranian population struggles to put food on the table.

Mahmoudi quoted the prominent Iranian political scientist Dr. Behrouz Puyan in his article. Puyan said, “with conditions inside Iran and abroad changing dramatically, the MEK implemented its new strategy of launching resistance units,” he added, “by organizing and leading the Iranian uprising in an effective manner, resistance units are injecting a new life in the society and protestors on the streets.”

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Iran Protest in various cities continued through the year

2019 Can Be the Year Western Governments Come Out in Support of the Iranian Resistance

Iran Protest in various cities continued through the year

The year 2018 a year of protests in various Iranian cities from its north to its east

Writing for Arab News on Sunday, January 6th, Dr. Majid Rafizadeh, a leading expert on Iran and Harvard-educated Iranian political scientist, outlined the case for international support for the Iranian opposition in 2019.

In his piece, Rafizadeh charted 2018’s year of protests. He described the nationwide uprisings in January 2018, that engulfed 142 Iranian towns and cities, and how they were “met by the regime with brutality and a harsh crackdown”.

Following the uprising, strikes and protests across the country were maintained by the opposition. “In July, a major five-day anti-government protest spread across dozens of cities”, he writes. Then again in August, Tehran and 26 other cities were racked with protests once more.

As the year came to a close, in October, a nationwide teachers’ strike saw schools close in over 100 cities, and then again in December. In the logistics and transport sector, the nation’s truck drivers have launched strikes and protests of their own throughout the year.

A Growing Protest Movement

Rafizadeh pointed out that the protest movement expanded in 2018. Protests became more frequent and more explicitly anti-regime in nature. In response, the regime has blamed the People’s Mojahedin Organisation of Iran (PMOI / MEK) and launched a vicious smear campaign against the group, in conjunction with a violent campaign of terror and intimidation, in an attempt to curb the MEK’s influence.

Regime Experts Admit MEK’s Major Role in Recent Protests

Its “crucial organizational role has made the opposition a primary target for a spate of attempted terror attacks,” Rafizadeh writes. He cites the foiled terror attack in Paris, as just one example of this coordinated campaign of terror against the group.

“That attack and others have thankfully been foiled, but the message from Tehran is clear— as the is the extent to which the mullahs feel threatened by the opposition,” Rafizadeh states. Nothing demonstrates the existential threat the MEK poses to the mullahs’ regime more than the regime’s willingness to risk political isolation on the international stage for the sake of attacking an opposition, pro-democracy group.

The MEK is an increasingly large threat to the mullahs’ future in power. It has successfully mobilized all parts of Iranian society and engaged the Iranian people in the protest movement.

From the urban middle class to the rural working class, all stratum of Iranian society is represented in the MEK’s ranks, even poorer sectors that have traditionally been the regime’s power base.

“Every protest is an act of defiance,” Rafizadeh writes.

A Population Buckling Under Economic Mismanagement

The MEK has found plenty of allies among the cash-strapped Iranian public. Years of regime economic mismanagement has crippled the Iranian economy and reduced the purchasing power of ordinary Iranians.

The mullahs’ have funneled Iran’s public finances into their own pockets through corrupt practices, or abroad to military groups in Syria, Yemen, Iraq, Gaza and elsewhere in the region. “In addition, the Iranian regime intensified its ballistic missile activities,” Rafizadeh claims, “which includes the illicit transfer of such weapons to Shiite proxies in other countries in the region.”

“Almost all major businesses in the country, including those presently dealing with European nations, are directly or indirectly controlled by elements within the political and military apparatus,” Rafizadeh writes. So, “when European countries help increase the regime’s revenues, they are indirectly funding terror attacks on their own soil.”

The New Year Will Be A Vital Year in The Struggle for Freedom and Human Rights in Iran

Rafizadeh asserts that the Iranian opposition has much to celebrate. 2018 “was the most significant to date for the Iranian resistance”, he writes, but “this year promises to be even more vital in the struggle for freedom and human rights in Iran”.

Rafizadeh concludes by encouraging Iranians to “make this the year that Western governments come out in support of the Iranian resistance”.

“These changes aren’t just the right thing to do, they are good policies”, he writes, “and this year, they are possible as long as advocates for a free and democratic Iran continue to make their voices heard.”

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Terribly biased article on the Guardian against the MEK

Daniel M. Zucker Refutes Merat’s Guardian Hit Piece

Terribly biased article on the Guardian against the MEK

Biased article bashing the MEK in the Guardian raises outrage among the Iranian diaspora. The piece is considered a reaction to the recent surge in protests and strikes in the country and a preparation for more terrorist activities against the main opposition, the MEK.

Augusta Free Press published a refute of a Guardian article by Dr. Daniel M. Zucker, founder of Americans for Democracy in the Middle East and prominent author on Middle Eastern politics.

In the final months of 2018, British newspaper the Guardian published a hit piece against the Iranian opposition group, the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK). The piece, published by Arron Reza Merat, a known regime affiliate, pedaled regime mistruths and lies in an attempt to influence public opinion against the Iranian opposition.

The Committee of Anglo-Iranian Lawyers Issue a Statement on the Guardian’s MEK Hit Piece

Zucker describes how the Iranian Ministry of Security (MOIS) took a leaf from the Russian KGB in its disinformation procedures. It combines truths with lies. The truths provide “authenticity” and provide facts the regime can point to when it is questioned by critics. But it also sews substantial and glaring lies into the narrative, deliberately designed to deceive and manipulate.

The Lies Sewn into Regime Discourse

The Guardian’s piece contained a litany of these mistruths deliberately fed into the text. It regurgitated the regime claim that the MEK murdered several US citizens in the 1970s. The claim has often been brought against the group, but it has been publicly disproved several times.

Zucker asserts that the murders were carried out at a time when the MEK leadership was in regime custody. A Marxist splinter group known as Peykar has already been held accountable for the murders.

Falsehoods and Lies: Debunking the Guardian’s Piece on the MEK

The piece also explains about the MEK taking up weapons to fight the Iranian regime after the mullahs’ regime imposed absolute repression. The MEK took up arms to defend itself after Khomeini [regime Supreme Leader] had ordered the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) to open fire on 500,000 peaceful MEK supporters during the June 20, 1981, peaceful demonstration in Tehran. Hundreds of Iranian citizens, supporters of MEK were killed in the onslaught.

https://kurdsanddisinformation.com/

The MEK in Iraq took up arms to defend their defenseless Iranian compatriots. The regime likes to pedal the lie that the MEK was involved in the 1988 gassing of the Halajab Kurds, but again, this is untrue. The Iraqi foreign minister, who is a Kurd himself, absolves the MEK of responsibility and proclaimed their innocence in the crimes.

Forced Membership Allegations

Another of the common regime accusations against the MEK centers on allegations it forces Iranians to join its ranks, and once involved with the organization, they are prevented from leaving.

This has also been publicly refuted time and time again. Recent visitors to the MEK compound, including high profile European politicians, have confirmed that MEK members are free to come and go as they please.

Former Scottish MEP Describes His Visit to Ashraf 3 in Albania and the Regime’s Vicious Misinformation Campaign

Everything the MEK does is done with the voluntary cooperation of its members, who are highly educated and capable of coherent decision-making.

 

Zucker also mentions the case of Somayeh Mohammadi, whose parents have frequently appeared on Iranian state-run media outlets and argued that the MEK is holding their daughter against her will. Somayeh Mohammadi has frequently denied this claim in public. She has revealed that her father is an agent of the regime and has publicly refuted his claims.

The Rise of the MEK and Overcoming the Regime’s Smear Campaign.

The Nazi Minister of Propaganda, Josef Goebbels once professed that to win a propaganda war, you must lie, and lie big. The Iranian regime undoubtedly has that mentality in mind when it uses its affiliates to spread mistruths and falsehoods across international media outlets.

Staff Writer

 

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1988 Massacre,A Little Prince in the Land of the Mullahs,Ahmad Raouf-Basharidoust,MEK,MEK Support,Mujahedin-e Khalq,PMOI

Book cover for “A Little Prince in the Land of the Mullahs”

“A Little Prince in the Land of the Mullahs” Tells the Story of a Victim of the 1988 Massacre

Book cover for “A Little Prince in the Land of the Mullahs”

The book cover for “A Little Prince in the Land of the Mullahs”, the Story of Ahmad Raouf-Basharidoust, a young MEK activist who was one of the Victims of the 1988 Massacre of Policital Prisoners in Iran

Sister of Political Prisoner Writes Graphic Novel about His Life and Death

The story of the 1988 Massacre in Iran is not an easy subject for a book. There is no happy ending and no resolution for those who were involved. It is not a topic one would usually consider for a graphic novel. But “A Little Prince in the Land of the Mullahs” manages to tackle this difficult subject matter through the eyes of a young man and his struggle for freedom in the midst of oppression.

The book, published by Société des écrivains, is written as a graphic novel, which allows the story of Ahmad Raouf-Basharidoust to come to life on the pages. Ahmad was one of the victims of the 1988 Massacre, in which 30,000 political prisoners, most of them MEK members or supporters, were executed by the Iranian regime over the course of a single summer.

Families of Victims of 1988 Massacre Still Seek Justice

Ahmad’s story is told by his sister, Massoumeh Raouf Basharidoust. In Ingrid Betancourt’s preface, she writes: “Telling the story of your little brother is a need, of course, but it is above all a right. It must honor Ahmad’s heroism, the majesty of his spirit, his beauty, his charisma. That is why she draws him for us and makes him speak because she knows that he alone can be his best spokesperson.”

Ahmad’s Story

Ahmad was born in 1964 to a middle-class family in northern Iran. The story of his childhood is also the story of the final years of the Shah’s rule in Iran, the 1979 Islamic Revolution, and Khomeini’s rise to power. Ahmad began to seek an alternative to the mullahs’ rule as a young man and became an active sympathizer of the MEK.

Ingrid Betancourt writes in her preface: “And in this suffocating and misogynistic world of the mullahs, his heroes are his mother and sister: a sister who manages to escape from prison, a mother who dies under the persecution of the regime’s executioners.”

Ahmad was later imprisoned for his political beliefs and, in 1988 he was rounded up along with 30,000 other political prisoners and executed.

A Story of Strength

Ahmad’s story tells an important story about one of the largest mass executions in modern history. This atrocity by the Iranian regime has never been investigated and its perpetrators have yet to be brought to justice. But “A Little Prince in the Land of the Mullahs” is also a story of strength in the face of oppression. An entire generation of Iranians rose up in opposition of Khomeini in 1988, despite the consequences. They spoke out for freedom until the very end. In this time of protest and turmoil in Iran, their message of resistance is more important than ever.

The book is on sale at the following addresses:

The English version published by Centre Litteraire Provancale, here; and the French translation of the book can be found here and here.

Staff Writer

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