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Mojahedin Khalq, True Mercenaries

The media spotlight having uncomfortably focused on the MEK’s alleged involvement in Israeli linked assassinations of Iranian scientists in recent weeks, the MEK has given up for the timeMojahedin Khalq, True Mercenaries being on advertising for their original purpose of killing and martyrdom. Instead they have turned up the volume on what France 24 dubbed their ‘battle by press release’.

There can be few journalists in the world who have an interest in Iran and have not been subjected to the MEK’s famous confetti, or ticker-tape, campaign of press releases. After terrorism, the MEK’s expertise is in propaganda. (Being ridiculously well funded is of course another, lesser investigated area of this group’s range of expertise.)

Over in Iraq, long term home to the MEK’s foreign terrorist base, the group’s members – formerly known as Saddam’s private army – are being moved from Camp Ashraf to Camp Liberty(TTL) before they are removed from Iraq altogether.

In response to this imagined affront, the MEK has pursued two tactics in its battle by press release – the first was to demand they be sent to a defunct refugee tent camp at the Jordanian border – and in direct contradiction to this to bleat about the terrible inhumane conditions at Camp Liberty (TTL) – former home to up to 5,000 US army personnel, which must surely earn the MEK the new soubriquet of the ‘MEK Princess Corps’.

But as the pleas for help have fallen on deaf ears and its camp looks set for closure, the MEK has more recently woken up to the need to distract from this existential crisis.

They have turned up the volume of press releases. But that is not all, taking a cursory look at the articles and stories engendered by this exercise, we see that the MEK is apparently advising anyone and everyone on what should be done about Iran. You would imagine the MEK is the expert of choice on everything to do with Iran.

But on closer scrutiny it is clear that none of this advise has come from the MEK’s own analysis or knowledge or from any verifiable or valuable information sources inside Iran – which the MEK simply does not have.

Instead the plethora of messages all contradict one another.

In one article the MEK swears at Nouri al Maliki accusing him of being an ‘agent of the Iranian regime’. Then in another article they refer to him as ‘brother al Maliki’. On one hand the MEK are aligned to Israel, at the same time they are associated with Saddamists from the former Iraqi dictatorship regime. The MEK have been linked with Mossad and the CIA, and also allegedly work with Iran’s ultra right intelligence gangs.

In Washington D.C. the MEK cosy up to the neoconservatives, Israeli lobby and regime change pundits to press for military strikes and war against Iran. The MEK’s black/white version of events infects the Republican electoral campaign with a crass warmongering stance.

Conversely, in Europe and the Persian Gulf States, where such a stance is highly unpopular, the MEK instead claim that the sanctions are working and that they should be given a chance to work further. The Democrats must be pleased to hear such posturing echoing way over across the ocean.

The MEK vilify the Green Movement but praise them as well.

If these contradictions arose from a clever manipulation of world politics they might be worthy of note. But this must be the only mercenary group in the world which offers its services to all sides of the equation, including those which are deadly enemies. Instead of the soft hum of smooth politicking, all we really hear is the loud ‘kerching’ of more money landing in Rajavi’s coffers.

Maybe this is why the MEK have so rapidly lost credence and relevance in the Iran debate – even those who use them are discovering they really can’t be trusted.

Anne Singleton, Author of "The life of Camp Ashraf" and "Saddam’s Private Army"

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