Iran Interlink Weekly Digest – 252
++ Much Farsi writing this week concerned Pompeo’s Warsaw summit. Some highlighted Pompeo’s meeting with the controversial Masih Alinejad. Comments relevant to MEK point out that America has dumped Maryam Rajavi. Faramarz Dadras, a security analyst, commented that nowadays everybody can take photos with Pompeo except Maryam Rajavi. Therefore, those who paid MEK have wasted their money. When it comes to it, she cannot be touched. Other comments say that no wonder Iranians are laughing at America when ex-CIA chief Pompeo has become the leader of the Iranian opposition. As long as people like Pompeo exist, even the hard-core regime change Iranians inside Iran would hesitate to take action in case the Americans impose something like Maryam Rajavi on the country.
++ Maryam Rajavi’s MEK event in Paris is today. Over the past week and beyond, many people have written open letters to the authorities in Germany, France, Albania and Poland to report that MEK, which pays people to attend as the audience, are even taking under age kids to Paris. They should be stopped.
++ The mother of Ali Hajeri who has left MEK in Albania, wrote an open letter published by Nejat Society addressed directly to Maryam Rajavi. The mother lists her grievances. “‘For so many years you held him captive. When he came out and we Skyped, I told my son ‘change your clothes and anything else you have brought from in there, just throw it away!’ I can’t stand to see such things.” She tells Rajavi “you spend so much money on your events and your clothes and cosmetic surgery and dentistry. But, one of your guys, my son, who has worked for free for decades, couldn’t even buy some decent clothes, so he wouldn’t have to sit in front of his mother wearing these scruffy clothes.” She continues, “Now he is out, you are filling your sites and loudspeakers saying he is an ‘agent of the regime’. By ‘regime’ you mean his country Iran. I thank God that my son is no longer a second-hand agent of Saddam, Mossad, Saudi and the Americans and anyone else who pays you. He is not an enslaved agent for them anymore, he is a free man.”
++ Massoud Khodabandeh wrote a Farsi blog titled ‘Why is nobody questioning Maryam Rajavi about the murder of Mohammad Reza Kolahi?’ Khodabandeh says, “As somebody who knew him personally – the MEK member who bombed the Republican Party HQ in Tehran in 1981 – I can say that Maryam Rajavi knew exactly who he was, where he was and what he was doing right up to his death. MEK would not allow someone like him to leave and just do what he wanted. The ironic aspect of this is that everyone in the West is knocking at the door of the Iranian embassy in the Netherlands for answers, but nobody is making enquiries from Maryam Rajavi who was his master and knew everything about him. Why is nobody asking: ‘How did he end up in Holland. Was he still doing work for MEK. Had MEK allowed someone with his background to just leave and get out of Iraq unsupervised. As a potential target for Iranian revenge, why didn’t MEK let the secret services in Holland know about his past. Or did you let them know but they were too afraid of Mossad and the CIA to protect him?’ Khodabandeh concludes: “To my mind, the only person who benefitted from his murder was Rajavi. Kolahi was eliminated like Malek Sharai and Massoud Dalili and many others because of what he knew. The benefits are that, one, you get paid to kill someone which is then blamed on Iran. And two, you get rid of another witness to your crimes and terrorism as you try to change into a new propaganda tool for the Saudis.”
++ Robert Azzi in Concord Monitor warns that the neo-conservatives who “invaded Iraq in 2003 with disastrous consequences… are back in power today”. Azzi identifies John Bolton (“a longtime supporter of the Mujahedeen Khalq”), Mike Pompeo (“a well-known Islamophobe and supporter of ‘enhanced interrogation’ techniques”) and Elliott Abrams (“convicted of lying to Congress during the Iran-Contra affair”) as the “unreconstructed cheerleaders and apologists” who are “advancing regime change in Iran and Venezuela” today. Azzi asserts, “The truth is that the true evangelical calling of such rapacious men is not to serve God but to serve Mammon, to serve the narrow, imperialist and hegemonic interests of selfish and ignorant men.”
++ Borzou Daraghi writing in The Independent examines the evidence behind the alleged terror plot against the MEK in Paris last year. Daraghi at least avoids the usual western journalists’ script of reflexively blaming Iran: “European countries have tabled evidence that cannot easily be dismissed, although they cannot easily prove it either”, the article quotes from Iran’s former ambassador to Germany. But although Daraghi acknowledges that “… European anger over alleged Iranian clandestine operations targeting dissidents and its missile programme threaten to diminish support for the nuclear deal”, the article does not question what motive Iran might have to conduct such alleged terrorism in Europe when it is working with Europe to maintain the JCPOA and to use a trading system, Instex, to “that bypasses US controls on the global financial system”. Daraghi, like other western journalists, accepts uncritically the MEK’s pose as ‘victims’ and fails to examine the MEK’s long history of false flag ops and murders of dissidents that might point to their involvement in this alleged plot.
++ Behnam Gharagozli in Iranian dot com seeks to untangle the web of the Saudi-Israeli-US propaganda war on Iran and cannot do so without reference to the role of the MEK. Identifying groups that would benefit from regime change “quickly harmonizes the disparity between facts and reporting”, says Gharagzoli. He points to the fact that the mainstream media belongs to only a handful of large corporate entities to demonstrate that although “there are few commonalities between a Zionist, Saudi royalist, Iranian monarchist, MEK member and a Neocon … Nevertheless, many of these various groupings have found a loose yet committed confederation in their quest for regime change… One manifestation of this trend is witnessing how the MEK was somehow transformed from a terrorist organization to a dissident Iranian organization after only a short time. This transformation from terrorist to dissident just so happened to occur after the MEK’s base in Iraq was sacked (the MEK had been an ally of Saddam Hussein) and the calls for regime change in Iran grew louder.”
++ Mazda Parsi in Nejat Bloggers warns that the MEK’s ability to pay large sums to American lobbyists also poses a threat to Europe. The recent revelation that the MEK channelled hundreds of thousands of Euros to the electoral fund of the extreme right-wing Spanish political party Vox. France is also criticised for harbouring the MEK; “the French government is following the American hypocrisy”, writes Parsi. Many western analysts acknowledge that allowing the MEK to interfere in relations between Europe and Iran creates problems. According to Parsi, this is a reckless policy since “European countries may be haunted by the cells of terrorist extremists of the MKO someday.”
++ Muhammad Sahimi in Lobelog exposes the flaws behind Pompeo and Bolton’s support for Iran’s “fake opposition”. After clarifying that “the true opposition that includes the reformists, religious-nationalists, secular leftists, various labor groups, human rights activists, and others, believes that it is up to the Iranian people living in Iran how to change the political system in their country”, Sahimi examines and trounces the kind of artificial opposition groups touted by America, Israel and Saudi Arabia. He dismisses the MEK thus: “All Iranians despise the MEK for collaborating with Saddam Hussein and Iraq during the war with Iran in the 1980s, for revealing information on Iran’s nuclear program and facilities, for working with Saudi Arabia, and for collaborating with Israel in the assassination of Iranian nuclear scientists.”
February 08, 2019