Memoirs of Ms. Batoul Soltani – Part 9
Following the previous parts I’d like to start this part with a particular memory. I remember when Nasrin (Mahvash Sepehri, the third high-ranking leader after the Rajavis) said in a meeting of Leadership Council:”you should act in a way that when your Minor goes to bed, he or she should be like a dead body who has been beheaded. I mean that one should be so exhausted that one could not think of anything at all.” The working schedule of the members should be so tight that when they go to bed, they are like dead bodies; otherwise they might think of their spouse, their children or their families in their free time. And if they think of such things, they will criticize the organization and start complaining and finally join the other dissidents. Every Superior had to check her Minors’ schedules everyday to remove every free hour. Sleeping time must be at least. They say that: "the members should never sleep enough” because if they do so, the next night they will have enough energy to think before falling asleep. Thinking alone is dangerous for the organization.
You cannot imagine the dimensions of the organizational control inside MKO. There is another issue called “physical working time for the members”. It means that beside those hours you are working on a computer, you should also have some physical working time. Your job shouldn’t be sitting and working on a computer only. The job shouldn’t be absolutely mental. You should at least have two hours of physical working time a day. For example if your job is working on a computer, they will assign you an intensive working time in the kitchen too.
To extend their organizational control, they have inspired the members that the Leadership Council is very sacred. It is so saintly that no one can doubt its foundation or criticize it. Anything ordered by the Council must be obeyed. There are also some other elements called as Pins (cult jargon) including high-ranking members like Rahman (Abbas Davari) or Javad Baraiee or Reza Moradi.
They were the officials of men’s section. Everyone has to obey them. They were the equivalent of the Leadership Council.
Today I believe that this is the reason why MKO does not take any position against me despite the fact that I have had many interviews and done a lot of activities for Sahar Family Foundation. It’s so simple for the MKO to make some false documents accusing me for any crime but they do not do anything against me. Why? Because they don’t want to expose the truth that one of the saints of their leadership Council has escaped from the cult. Therefore they never take a position against me. If they say anything against me in their website, the twenty to twenty-five members of the Leadership Council who run the sites will realize the fact and that’s what the organization doesn’t want.
I’d like to discuss an issue: cutting off with the normal world and the art of remaining revolutionary. This is a principal very similar to that of other cults around the world. The primary principal of such an art (the art of remaining revolutionary) is to leave the family. It means that you should take distance from your family and friends. Particularly after the Ideological revolution you should pass a phase called ideological divorce, whether you are married or single or if you have any children you should pass over them emotionally and abandon them and then enter the organization. After you entered the organization you couldn’t even have a pocket radio because it links you to the outside world. You cannot use any mass media except that of MKO. They never let the news of the other Media broadcast in the hall. Sometime they even record, edit and censure the news and then show them, just to claim that they broadcast the news of CNN or Al Jazeera. They are very careful about the relationships between the members and the people of the outside society such as the Iraqis who come to the camp. They care about the relations because they don’t want to risk the art of remaining Revolutionary. They say:” becoming Revolutionary is not an art but remaining Revolutionary is an art.” They say that they help to remain Revolutionary. How do they help? They send your children far away to make you free and consequently they solve your contradiction. Here, you see the highest deception. However this is how the organization acts for its own survival, but they make you think that you owe them because they help you!
Another example is that you should submit all your photos or souvenirs to MKO. Love and friendship is forbidden. They have created a world of violence without any emotions.
They also confiscate the members’ ID cards and passports to cut them off their identities. They have a theory called: " in contradiction with the society”. When one enters MKO where one is always criticized, one finds the life so hard. They say that the art of remaining Revolutionary means that you must solve the contradiction with the group. They make you consider the life in the group as a value. Thus, the member is gradually departed from his or her world and becomes a puppet that acts in the same way the organization wants.
Translated by Nejat Society