Believe Iran, Not Its Ayatollahs
To Iran's mullahs, it's a pity that their party with the former United States administration did not last longer. The Obama administration was regarded as a symbol of friendship and brotherhood in the eyes of the Ayatollahs. But, those days are gone and the inhabitants of the earth now no longer witness the deep-rooted, umm, friendship, between the Obama Administration and His Excellency Javad Zarif.
But let's take a look at how this appears from inside Iran. Iranians themselves say they had hoped that the next proper place for officials of the two states to continue their lengthy negotiations would be in the middle of Iran’s Karoon River, or rather, the middle of Iran's former Karoon River, the longest river in the country, which discharged its water into the Persian Gulf, and is now dried out.
Perhaps that serves as a microcosm for the entire sentiment engulfing Iran in so many ways even as many in the West continue to delude themselves that a cordial entente with the mullahs is possible. A detailed look at just that is well worth examination.
The destruction of this once-vast river is a feat that only Iran’s Ayatollahs, in fact, could achieve. The problem is overuse. Not only have state-favored industries done their share, the mullahs themselves have gulped down Iran’s natural resources - and all for themselves. State entities, including Ayatollah Khamenei’s IRGC – the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps – have already built several dams on most of Iran’s rivers, literally thieving water for their private plantations. These are the same Ayatollahs, favored by the former U.S. administration and some other Westerners, who are such experts at devastation over production. Americans and some Europeans, in their zeal for deals, shook hands with what can only be described to sane Iranians as the devils.
Iranians frankly could not believe their eyes when the mighty Karoon River which irrigated the Iranian south and provided jobs for thousands of Iranians just dried out. This came after wastewater from agriculture and industry made the river quite filthy. The river had been known earlier for its vast volume and naturally pure water.
There were protests when the desecration of this environmental bounty was desecrated and then disappeared entirely. Many Iranians were beaten up or arrested when they protested the government’s incompetence. That wasn't the only environmental crime, either. It was hard for Iranians to believe their eyes when they saw that Lake Oroomieh, in the northwest of Iran, which is the largest salt lake in the Middle East, all dried out for the same reason the river Karoon was. The same argument goes for a number of other dried out lakes and rivers in different parts of Iran.
Iranians know very well what happened to destroy these critical river systems, but the mullahs chose to insult their intelligence when questions were raised. Take the example of one of the Obama administration's best Iranian friends, Ayatollah Alamolhoda, who is one of the most powerful mullahs close to the Supreme Leader. He claimed that the Karoon was dried out because Iranian women walked along it while dressing themselves like European women. The Ayatollah did not elucidate why none of the European rivers have dried out as well, but for him it wasn't a problem.
How amazing that many businessmen now walking along European rivers are trying to dress like Iranian mullahs! The world, however, does not cling to the old days. Once upon a time, some greedy politicians claimed they had found vestiges of reformists in Iran’s ruling elite. Their searches in history, however, did not locate the many powerless Iranians executed or blatantly tortured for demanding their democratic rights.
And Iranians know this, too.
Despite what some Westerners prescribe to Ayatollahs for Iran, no one in recent history has been the subject of more loathing from the Iranian public than the mullahs in the present regime. Not a single day goes by without a few antigovernment protests taking place here and there inside Iran. One way of suppressing these people is to play God and send people to the gallows every day. But it doesn't stop the protests. Any move against the dictatorship of mullahs puts a smile on Iranian people’s faces. That is the reality inside the oppressive disaster the mullahs have made of Iran.
Some officials in the West have suggested that Iran’s largest suppressive force, IRGC –“Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps” – be listed as a terrorist organization. In the past four decades, this military force has tortured and murdered many Iranians, as well as provided support for the terrorists in neighboring states.
In a grand gathering on the occasion of the Persian New Year, the Iranian Resistance's President-elect Maryam Rajavi said:
Today, Khamenei faces three major predicaments in determining the fate of the regime's election sham: First, fearing the Iranian people's Resistance and uprising; second, the US policy in the region which has seriously alarmed the regime; and third, the dilemma over Khamenei's succession which has led to a deep crisis within the regime. The people of Iran do not heed the regime's sham elections and will boycott it as they always have. Based on the acknowledgments made by the regime's officials, various strata of the people of Iran staged some 7 to 11 thousand protests last year against the regime's policies. Beyond any protest, this is a daily drill for uprooting the regime's injustice and oppression. Therefore, Western governments must not fall for the regime's hoaxes and farcical elections and victimize the people of Iran. The policy of overlooking the Iranian people's human rights, freedom and Resistance can no longer be continued.
The current administration does seem to have taken note. Speaking at a press conference, on Feb. 16, President Donald Trump called Iran "another mess I inherited. We have imposed new sanctions on the nation of Iran, who has totally taken advantage of our previous administration. And they are the world's top sponsor of terrorism.”
John Bolton, the former U.S. ambassador to the U.N. in his address for Nowruz (the Iranian New Year) in Tirana, Albania said: ”I have a few words to mullahs in Tehran. The golden era of relations with the United States is over. It is vitally important that the whole world understands that American policy on mullahs’ regime in support of international terrorism and nuclear power program, is fundamentally changed."
Let’s hope this is the start of a new era, in which, the terrorists and their godfather, the Tehran regime, can no longer wither and ruin any more innocent lives.
Hassan Mahmoudi is a human rights advocate and social media journalist seeking democracy for Iran and peace for the region.