Iranian society is inching toward violence

Iranian society is getting increasingly violent.  In the past few days, several women have been killed by their husbands in Iran's border cities.  An increase in child murder, general murder and family crimes, suicide, and theft, and a decrease in psychological security in society, reflects the rising violence and seems to contribute to more violence.

Society does not move toward violence overnight, over a month, or even over several years.  Violence is the result of many shortfalls in any society, bringing it to the brink of collapse.  At one point, it manifests in the form of a volcanic eruption.  The traces of violence are seen among the elderly in Iran (this couple, for example), the same people who were once a symbol of peace, tolerance, and experience.  Nowadays, they are like moving bombs of violence on the streets, buses, and subways.

The recent pandemic has lowered the tolerance threshold for people all over the world.  Iran's supreme leader issued a fatwa banning reputable vaccines from countries such as France, Britain, and the United States.  This latest example of colossally mismanaging the virus has contributed to a more tense society in Iran.  However, the pandemic is not the reason for a dysfunctional system; it is just another symptom.

Violence in Iran's society is directly related to the violence that Iran's security and law enforcement agencies perpetrate.  The security forces impose all kinds of restrictions, limitations, brutalities, and hardship on society.  The security forces kill the border porters and fuel carriers.

Another cause of anger in Iran is unbridled class differences.  In Iran, a sentence from the Prophet of Islam is incredibly famous, and that is that society could carry on with infidelity but could not sustain poverty and oppression.  These realities are all interwoven.

Iran is currently one of the world's most impoverished nations, with over 40% of Iran's citizens living in household poverty.  Individuals cannot meet the basic needs of their families, including food, safe water, health, education, housing, and even air.  In 2020, incomes below $1.90 per person per day will push people below the absolute poverty line.

This concept means that today, every person in Iran earning less than 80 tomans (Iran's new currency) per month lives below the absolute poverty line.  Eighty percent of Iran's population is either below or just above that poverty line.

At present, the well-being of Iranian families has reached its lowest level in decades, and there are indications that this downward trend will continue in the future.  Even the lifting of sanctions will not provide a way to return to the past.

Children as garbage collectors, women being the heads of households, and children working on the streets, in subways, in anonymous workshops and signs have become familiar scenes in the city.  Their numbers are increasing every day.

In such a context, the children's rights are completely ignored.  They are prone to many physical and psychological injuries.  Perhaps the most obvious example is that most adults opted to stay home and safe at the beginning stages of the COVID-19 spread.  Still, the working children continued to stand behind red lights and look for jobs and income on the deserted streets.  These children could have been infected with the virus or injured — and they've been blamed.

We are facing a "social collapse."  Social collapse can be low, medium, or high in any society.  In present-day Iran, we have crossed the middle ground and are entering the critical sector.

The angry and aggravated people of Iran use every opportunity to express their hatred and disgust for the mullahs' governance.  They have been burning campaign posters and propaganda banners of Ibrahim Raisi, Khamenei's preferred candidate, now considered the next president of Iran.  It has reached the point that Raisi has asked the government forces to stop installing his banners.  He cannot tolerate the level of dismay and hatred of the people for this regime.

Raisi is the man who played a key role in the 1988 massacre of political prisoners.  The extraordinary societal hatred for Raisi appeared at a rally Ahvaz that the regime organized.  The regime forced people from Khuzestan and neighboring provinces to attend (and paid some).  The AP reported about supporters but neglected to report that when Raisi spoke to the people crammed into Takhti Stadium in Ahvaz, they shouted, "There is no water, there is no water."

The result of this anger and hatred is the unified boycott of Khamenei's engineered elections, which can be seen in the speech of Khamenei's prayer leader on June 11.  Mullah Alam al-Huda, for example, interpreted the embargo, saying: "The other system has taken its life and is over."  The source of this general embargo is universal anger, and protest erupts everywhere and at every opportunity.

Although Raisi avoids appearing at any gathering exposing him to public outrage or reporter's questions, the people have not forgotten that Raisi, Khamenei, and others committed massacres in 1988 and again in 2019.  The daily violence reminds them how oppressive the regime is.  This anger and hatred will flare up when Raisi, the Ayatollah of Executions, takes the regime's presidency.  (His victory is foreordained.)

The Friday sermon of Qazvin said the organization of hypocrites (the name of the Iranian regime, gives its sworn opposition to the Mojahedin) is trying to discourage electoral participation in the run-up to the elections and finally start a civil war.  Hojjatoleslam Khezri stated that the enemy is pursuing three strategies close to the elections: divisiveness and trying to discourage people's participation in the election, destroying the essential personalities of the revolution (Raisi), and initiating a civil war.

They are wrong.  Any civil war won't be because of opposition tactics.  It will, instead, naturally reflect the tens of thousands of daily executions, killings of young people in the 2019 uprising, and the 1988 massacre of political prisoners.  The one who sows the wind reaps the storm.

Image: Ebrahim Raisi by Hossein Razaqnejad.  CC BY 4.0.

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