An interview with Batool Soltani on MKO self-immolations – Part two
Sahar Family Foundation: Our greetings Mrs. Soltani. We are ready to continue the issue of suicide operation if you will. I will pose the first question unless you have some preliminary remarks to add.
Batool Soltani: before we continue with your question, I deem it necessary to add explanations on the previous session’s discourse. First, what motivates an operator to commit suicide when he happens to come face to face with the security forces and the police? Does it mean that there is absolutely no other way? Is it not really possible for a militiaman to strengthen himself physically and psychologically to bear pressures of probable tortures, prison and investigations instead of committing suicide as the last solution? It might be the easiest way to protect some information but for sure it fails to be equal to the value of a man’s life. Another point is that it may be regarded an act of bravery in itself, but can it not be considered an act of the ultimate weakness and a sense of inferiority? These questions may seem illogical in an obsessive atmosphere where anything is routinely scrutinized from a security point of view that may threaten the existence of the organization. But it does not mean that in no condition there is a logical and rational solution to any issue. Although a conjecture, I think it can be confirmed if discussed in detail with the wise and elite.
But how the organization justifies the suicide operation as the first and the last solution? What are its good reasons for exchanging such an easiest and simple way for a man’s life? Within the organization they say the capacity of enduring interrogational torture varies from person to person. I think I have read things in the organization’s sources about the applied inconceivable measures to assess the members’ resistance and response to the tortures by exposing them to a diversity of physical pressures like flogging, depriving them of sleeping, suspending them handcuffed from the ceiling in a variety of conditions and the like. Then they would conclude that in spite of varying degrees of resistance, it could be measured but the exact degree would always remain a matter of obscurity. In fact, nobody could stand the tortures that could continue to no definite degree. Of course, they knew that not all members would be put under the same tortures; it depended on the ranks and the extent of the information they held. Thus, an arrested key element and cadre to whom the survival of the organization depended would break in some point under the tortures, so suicide would be much more guaranteed than making a risk. It is instilled into him that suffering and torture are inevitably awaiting him and nothing is known to what degree he can hold out the arbitrary tortures that warrant the agents’ access to the concealed information. This is the angle of the organization’s look at the issue that needs to be studied in depth in itself.
As I pointed out earlier, the organization’s standards are absolutely different. The organization unrelentingly persisted that the ultimate solution to any problem was to offer a sacrifice. Somebody had to be sacrificed for the cause of the organization, which has been regarded more precious than the life of a militiaman, through suicide, self-harming operations or other similar acts. In one instance, as I remember, Rajavi in justification of the failure of the Operation Eternal Light stated that he had known from the very beginning that it was a futile operation from a military viewpoint, but he did it as it was tied to the survival of the organization that required so many lives. So worthless are evaluated the lives of the members that he sends them to their death in swarms to prove that the organization and the Rajavis are still breathing.
In a message he stated that if anybody set himself on fire in Camp Ashraf, it would be a cost paid to minimize the limitations imposed on the camp by the US forces. I mean the suicide case by Yaser Askari who was said to have committed suicide because of the imposed pressures on Camp Ashraf. The act is no more a countermeasure to protect the organization against any threat of annihilation but rather a means to further certain organizational, and even personal, ambitious objectives. Here the intention is no more measuring a member’s resistance degree in case of undergoing torture, rather suicide turns to be an imposed means to serve the survival of the organization, a purpose he, the member, has been destined from the very beginning to sacrifice himself for. I mean to say that the organization’s innovated self-burnings like that of 17 June and that of Yaser Askari in Camp Ashraf have been the easiest chosen solutions to overcome the crises. Even beyond that, the act is sanctified and glorified as a model for others to follow fervently instead of criticizing its exploitation for vague and hollow purposes. And as an alternative, the organization looks for belligerently innovated means that devour more sacrifices; crushed, scorched, crumbled bodies with no identity.
To be continued
Translated by Mojahedin.ws