human rights watch

fredag 28 april 2017



The presidential election in Iran is the same every time no one changes no better lives for the inhabitants of Iran. It will still be harder and harder lives for the Iranian people during the dictatorship fascist religious regime
By Shahriar Kia
Despite all the brouhaha about the presidential election in Iran, rest assured there is nothing new to find. While over 1,600 individuals have registered as candidates, the Guardian Council, loyal to the Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei who enjoys the last word in all state affairs, has vetted the slate down to six rivals.
The two main presidential candidates, the incumbent, Hassan Rouhani, and challenger, Ebrahim Raisi, are both deeply implicated in the Iranian regime’s human rights violations, plundering the country’s natural resources, misappropriation of the country’s assets, supporting the regime’s relentless expansionist drive, and support to terrorists and extremists across the region, plunging the Middle East into wars for decades.
Rouhani, known as the “Purple Fox” amongst the Iranian people, has continuously claimed to be a “moderate” and “reformist”. However, his record depicts an absolute regime loyalist: he played a major role in the government-sponsored crackdown on women following the 1979 revolution, the recruitment of young kids for the devastating Iran-Iraq War to “clear” minefields, the oversight of a fierce campaign against the 1999 student movement in Iran, and the acceleration of Iran’s nuclear program and ballistic missile production. Rouhani has presided over 3,000 executions during his presidency. In addition, poverty has skyrocketed and thousands of companies closed, while he allocated billions of dollars to fuel wars in Syria, Iraq, Yemen and elsewhere.
To further cement his allegiance to the supreme leader, Rouhani made it crystal clear he took part in the current race only after obtaining Khamenei’s blessing, as did Raisi, and all other current and past candidates.
While serving in a variety of posts in Iran’s so-called ‘judiciary’, Raisi is most notoriously known for his role as a member of the “Death Commission” that oversaw the 1988 massacre of more than 30,000 political prisoners, most of whom were members and supporters of the Iranian opposition People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK). Even pregnant women and young girls were amongst those sent to the gallows.
Raisi was promoted by Khamenei to head the massive Astan Quds Razavi foundation, a phony charity that has effectively confiscated real estate and other assets not only inside Iran, but also in neighboring countries. This institution is involved in procuring the billions necessary for Iran and its Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) to continue exporting terrorism and fundamentalism across the region.
And while Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the former president, stole the show recently with his sudden registration as a candidate, analysts believe his registration and following disqualification, is a significant sign of the Supreme Leader’s weakness.
The stage is set, in a context of international and domestic crisis – protests are a daily occurrence in Iran in spite of the repression – for precisely what senior Iranian officials fear the most: massive uprisings similar to 2009.
Mohsen Gharavian, a key leader in Iran’s religious schools and a staunch supporter of Khamenei, described Ahmadinejad’s move as “rebellion against the leader,” “a dangerous measure” and “disobedience.”
The announcement of Ahmadinejad’s disqualification came on Thursday, April 20. Ahmadinejad is the very individual Khamenei appointed as president back in 2005 and 2009 through the IRGC’s support and election engineering, imposing his candidacy against others in the Iranian regime apparatus. Ahmadinejad’s disqualification from this presidential race, under Khamenei’s direct orders, signals a new purge inside the mullahs’ apparatus and a major indication of this regime’s crumbling.
Reports from inside the country indicate growing public hatred of the sham nature and the farcical campaign of the presidential election, with people inside Iran and across the globe taking to social media; see, for example, the hashtag#MyVoteRegimeChange.
According to a statement posted on its widely viewed website, the PMOI/MEK has called on all Iranians to voice their opposition to the regime by boycotting the entire election. In a statement
Reading in part, “Freedom and free elections based on the people’s right to sovereignty,” the opposition invites Iranians from all walks of life to a “nationwide campaign” aimed at shunning the elections through a variety of protests.
The Iran Ensaf News website reported: “In addition to the (PMOI/MEK) network’s presence and recent call to boycott the vote, one must refer to their power and influence in social media, especially their presence in projects that are costing the country big. The (PMOI/MEK’s) intertwined Twitter network… has been able to launch and navigate relatively effective campaigns against [the Iranian regime].”
Further disputes amongst Tehran’s ruling elite are a strong indication of the regime’s inability to cope in the face of mounting domestic and international calamities. Iran is currently in its weakest position for decades. The threats made by the regime are a sign of desperation. Now is the time for further sanctions targeting Iran’s ballistic missile and nuclear projects, and its human rights violations. It is also time to designate the IRGC as a foreign terrorist organization.
Senator John McCain’s recent visit to Albania for a meeting with the PMOI/MEK leadership sends a strong signal to Tehran that, not only have times changed since Obama’s policy of appeasement, but that Washington now sees regime change through an organized opposition able to bring it about as the only solution for peace in the region. As other American policymakers follow his lead and further empower the Iranian Resistance on the global stage, they will support the people of the Middle East in uprooting this prototype regime for political Islam and state-sponsored terrorism.

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