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The Islamic Republic Referendum, an Issue of Challenge

The presence of Mojahedin Khalq Organization (MKO) in the run of Islamic Republic Referendum in 1979 and its support of the move is an underlying matter of dispute between the Iranian opposition groups, and in some respects the US State Department, and MKO. The group has constantly reiterated that from the very beginning of the Islamic revolution in 1978 has taken an opponent position against the move and its leadership. To justify its congenial attitude in some phases based on existing and unquestioned evidences, MKO claim it was a force of circumstance to follow a conciliatory attitude towards the revolution and the leadership. Mojahedin say they could well have been liquidated unless they moved on a front of accommodation.

No doubt, both in the issue of referendum and the seizure of the US embassy in Tehran, Mojahedin were very critical, mostly not of the moves but of the contents. In fact, their dismay was the result of the group’s political and ideological teachings that did not evaluate the two moves coinciding with their strategic ends, that is to say, to escalate a gross military tension with the US. In general, their main objective was aimed at heating up the created tension between the US and Iran to a point that lead to a military face-off according to Mojahedin’s antagonistic ideology. In other words, more than any thing else Mojahedin were focusing on the counter-imperialistic aspect of the Islamic Republic, as they said:

The main issue is not what the form and the name of the regime should be, the most important goal and the attempt of the imperialism is directed at keeping our society fundamentally unchanged and non-reformed so the move could be totally shifted towards the imperialism and bolstering up the bastion of non-revolutionary elements and links. [1]

Somewhere else, in an attempt to intensify the challenging attitude, they said:

From now on, Shah is no more a protector of the imperialism’s interests but, in respect to your [Khomeini] decisive leadership, more known as a nemesis and a cause for a greater, violent anti-imperialism revolution. [2]


Addressing Ayatollah Khomeini, they also said:

The imperialism well understood that further confrontation with people and you would lead to a deliberately aggravated public rage. [3]

Indeed, Mojahedin position at the time, in contrast to their present claims of willing to establish freedom and democracy, persisted in political standstill and anarchism, which they called revolution, and establishing a form of conductible democracy or, according to Mojahedin’s ideological trend, a revolutionary democracy modeled in Stalinism. It was the absolute form of the democracy they deemed for the Islamic Republic. In a statement they said:

Our congratulation carries the hope that in future the flaws and errors of this prime democracy in its revolutionary concept are corrected, so there would be no dispute in the form in the coming elections. [4]

Based on their ideological trends, Mojahedin had the same Marxist-based interpretations of other issues in Iran including the human rights. They believed that the issue of human rights in Iran was an instrument for the Shah’s regime to prevent any revolution. In a statement congratulating the initiation of the Islamic Republic they said:

No doubt, the traitor Shah was the most servile puppet of imperialism. So it was impossible for the colonialists to anticipate totally ignoring so anti-national a puppet. Thus, by scheming a totally imperialistic plot called the human rights, imperialism tried to lessen the burden pressing on the proxy regimes to prevent possible burst of revolutions in those societies. [5]

Such views work as a good yardstick to have an analysis of Mojahedin’s antagonistic positions against the Islamic Republic and its principles with the exception that today, because of the grave political situation they are entwined with, their views are tainted with a liberal and American culture. No body is in the doubt that Mojahedin from the very beginning were challenging the Iranian revolution. However, as mentioned, their today’s position is completely different with their past in respect to the issues of imperialism, liberalism and bourgeoisie which indicate that Mojahedin, following an ideologically opportunistic policy, seize the opportunity in any position taking.

Mojahedin’s earlier confession of their perforce coincidence with the Islamic Republic at its early days and their present adaptation with the West in general and the US in particular carries the message that zigzagging position taking [6] is an innate feature of hypocrite Mojahedin. Moreover, Mojahedin, besides zigzagging tactics, never retreat from their ideological and cult-funded teachings. Now the question is that how much are the Americans convinced, being aware of Mojahedin’s opportunistic nature, [7] to manipulate Mojahedin as an instrument against Iran? Although not exposed before the eyes of the world, the evidences tell a possibility of the US maintaining contacts with Mojahedin.




[1]. A collection of MKO’s statements and announcements, vol. 1, MKO Publications, Bahman 1358.

[2]. ibid.

[3]. ibid.

[4]. ibid.

[5]. ibid.

[6]. Radio Farda interview with Saeed Shahsavandi.

[7]. In a part of the US State Department Announcement about Mojahedin we read “It is difficult to accept at face value promises of future conduct when an organization fails to acknowledge its past”. 1994.


Bahar Irani – April 7, 2007 – Mojahedin.ws


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