People’s Mujahedin;Another Iranian Fanatism

After the Islamic revolution of Ayatollah Khomeiny Mujahedin Khalq Organization fled to Iraq. On the pretext of fighting for Democracy, they made a bizarre world controlled by the hatred for Islamic Republic. A narrative by the defectors of MKO.

While his arrest, Babak Amin couldn’t swallow his cyanide capsule. The Iranian police surprised him by catching his neck from behind so that he couldn’t swallow the capsule and a hand went into his mouth to get out the deadly poison while he was walking around Vanak Square in Tehran. The unit is specially trained for this kind of operation: catching the MKO members. However a medical team, who accompanied the police in such an operation, owns the necessary antitoxin. Therefore four of his comrades who succeeded to swallow the cyanide were also rescued.

Babak Amin was arrested in January 2001. He had arrived from Iraq and had operated some mortar attacks against security centers which were the last attempts of MKO, present all over the Europe, in Iran.

Horror and Science “Fiction

While his attempts, Babak Amin didn’t succeed to kill anyone which caused him be safe from death penalty. He was sentenced to a ten-year imprisonment of which he has passed five years and now he is enjoying the conditional freedom. This 40-year old defector who is studying Informatics at Tehran University narrates his 20-year experience of living in MKO as a commandant. A terrifying story which mixes horror and science fiction. Therefore one find a world, governed by an insane Utopia that, with hatred to Islamic Republic, inverse the values. An example of this inversion can be seen in their military branch (National Liberation Army) by the domination of women over men. The male fighters with some exceptions include the sub-officers or simple soldiers who have to wash the dished or do the laundry.

Al this doesn’t prevent the strict isolation which manages the Iraqi headquarters of MKO extremely. Definitely the restaurants are separated. There are distinctive gas stations for the men and women do not encounter – "if one has to talk to his female commandant ,four or five other people must also be present " Babak Says " only the men are allowed to swim in the pool but on the condition that they are totally dressed.

Babak entered the MKO in 1983 while living in Vienne. The Organization was formed in 1965 and played an active role in fighting against Shah who executed all the historical leader of MKO except Masud Rajavi. Professing an Islam without ayatollahs mixed with Marxism, MKO refused to submit to regime which cost them to be evaluated as apostate and insurgent by Imam Khomeini. Regarding the Western "Useful Idiots" MKO has a rusty message in which the promise of establishing democracy in Iran is included.

But what made Babak to step inside the Organization, he explains with a voice without passion;" were the photos of political prisoners tortured by Islamic regime shown to him”

With five other people, Babak set out for Iraq where MKO who was allied with Saddam Hussein fighting against Iran, had settled its bases.

Babak and 300 Iranian students who had come from all over the world received an intensive military training at Camp Jalil in Iraqi Kurdistan. The objective is to form the groups made of two or three fighters who then had to infiltrate into Iran border; then it was the time for a long time residency in Camp Ashraf, the central headquarter located at 60 kilometers from Baqdad. Ashraf itself is another world, a world outside the world that Babak found out. "A society completely closed in itself. Receiving letters or phone calls are forbidden, you don’t have the right to leave the base except for medical reasons or sometimes shopping."

The absolute control of thoughts

1989,the imprisonment became harder since the previous year was the final year of Iran-Iraq war and in the aftermath of the cease-fire MKO defeated in its vast invasion to Iran through Iraqi borders. The invasion was named "Eternal Light"; Mujahedin succeeded to enter Iran borders but they were forced to retreat with heavy damages and the promise made by Masud Rajavi and his wife Maryam ( who lives in Ouver-Sur-d’Oise, Paris) based on the uprising of the Iranian people, failed to occur.

"They told us: you didn’t fight hard, so you defeated"

The absolute control of thoughts started; marriage became forbidden and divorce obligatory even if the spouse lived in Iran. The rings should have gotten out of fingers. In your mind, you must forget the existence of women. Everyday, there were meetings in which we had to explain to our commandant, anything passed in our minds beginning with sexual things. All this was noted in a report which was used against you in case of necessity especially when you were willing to leave the MKO. This caused you to think that everyone is a sensualist. You weren’t anything anymore, even deep in your mind." The rare amusement included watching films of war." They were censured, of course, but after watching them, you also had to say anything you felt."

Behrouz Soltani, also aged 40 years, says the same thing and adds: "so as, when I arrived Iran, I had strange sexual thoughts even about my sister." He became a member of MKO due to Iran- Iraq war. He was old member of Basij who was captured by Iraqi forces in Basra in 1982. He was only 15. "In POW camp, they asked me if I want to be liberated I said yes, then they took me to Camp Ashraf. There they proposed to me to join Rajavi or spend eight years at Abu Qoraib prison (the terrifying prison of Saddam Hussein).In spring 2001, among Mujahedin Behrouz became a supply soldier of Iraqi Army especially against Kurds. Soltani is not pleased for what he did in Iran borders:" we killed a lot of Kurds, the officials told us that they were Iranians but because of their clothes, we could see that they were definitely lying".

I witnessed that our tanks passed over the dead bodies just for fun. We arrested the Kurdish families who with white flags came to Iraq and delivered them, men women and children, to Iraqi Intelligence Service." he continues:"It is normal to kill the armed combatant but not the innocent civilians. We just couldn’t say anything. To understand it, you should go interior the organization. Any individual, even in the prison, owns an identify but we were nothing, the Iraqis called us " Rajavi’s men". Personally, I hoped they would kill me so that I shouldn’t be obliged to attend the nightly inquiry meetings. In that condition there was no pity for no one. They don’t let you love anyone."

Hura Shalchi, 35, joined MKO when she was 24.Mujahedin forced her to divorce and separated her from her four”year old daughter. Hura succeeded in her first mission but while the second mission when she had to commit a mortar attack against a revolution guard’s base in Tehran, she was arrested." While returning to Iraq, the person who was supposed to guide her through the border handed her to police." He did this under the order of MKO leaders. I found out that they don’t want the ones who go for mission get back any more since they fear that anything is told about Iran’s today condition because there were no similarity between what we had seen and what they had told us." Hura who was sentenced to life imprisonment, only spent one and a half years in the prison and now she is free under the juridical control.

"When she was arrested, one of her comrades recalls, our chiefs made us believe that she has been killed and all Ashraf Campers celebrated her martyrdom." They prefer viewing her as a martyr because they can also exploit her blood." Behrouz Soltani adds.

Under American Protection

Today, Camp Ashraf incorporates 3000 men and women who are under the control of Mojgan Parsaiee. The difference from Saddam Hussein’s era is that now the camp is under the protection of Americans who have disarmed the group and defend it against the Shiite pro-Iranian groups. However the Department of State has listed MKO as a FTO, Pentagon is applying a flexible policy toward the organization, and making profit of their information on Iran doesn’t hesitate to use them against Islamic Regime. However, the Americans haven’t prevented the individuals coming out of the camp and going to Iran what Naser,49,did recently. He was a member of MKO for twenty years." Due to my political activities, he says, I passed four years in Iranian prison. When I came out, there was no place for me in the society. Therefore I joined them. With them, I wanted to liberate my people."

Once he was out of Ashraf, he passed three months at American Camp Tiff." The Americans knew everything about us. In that camp we were like refugees, but they treated us brutally. They don’t respect you except if you serve them. If we protested, they would beat us." He affirms.

For a long time, only membership of MKO could make you be executed, and thousand of fighters paid the price by their lives. Today, Regime has completely changed its policy and if a crime hasn’t been committed, they are welcomed by regime. They are even allowed to have a small association where they employ themselves in order to extract those who are still in Iraq. Today they learned about the suicide of Yasser Akbari Nasab, one of their friends at Camp Ashraf. The Organization is not any more the phantom that was in 1989’s for Iran. "If the Mujahedin leave Iraq, they will be finished for ever." says Babak. Waiting for that time, the organization stays rich and influential in Europe. It has also received an important victory in front of European justice that annulled the freezing of MKO’s funds estimated to be several million Euros, which were blocked since 2002. The defectors, who victimized their youth in MKO, didn’t join the Islamic regime though. Since then we detest any politic." says Hura Shalchi.

Liberation-France – Jean-Pierre Perrin – January 3rd, 2007

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