This month’s article reviewing the activities of the Association of Victims of the MEK has brought back some special memories.
One thing that is clear from the past year’s activities is that some extraordinary people are involved in this Association; people whom I have had the pleasure of meeting and working with over the past year; people who have displayed a wealth of ability, humanity, kindness, wit and good humor; people with strengths perhaps they are not aware of in themselves. For some of these people, to have survived the crushing experiences during their time with the MEK is an extraordinary feat in itself. For them to find the strength and conviction to continue to speak out the truth is truly inspiring.
We all know people who have left the Mojahedin for whom simply the experience of having been in the cult has become a virtual prison from which they cannot escape. MEK indoctrination infects their thinking even now and stunts their lives in every aspect.
The former members who have had the courage to speak out about the crimes of the Mojahedin leaders are all extraordinary people. When these people joined the MEK it was because they were not ordinary; they felt the desperate need of their people for freedom and they acted on it. Now, they have come out of the MEK with their integrity intact. They did not give way to the crushing manipulations of Rajavi. It is because of this that they are able to resist the threats and expose the machinations of the leaders. It is also, we should not forget, because Rajavi is not godlike; he is mortal and fallible like the rest of us.
News of Massoud Rajavi’s arrest and interrogation by US forces in Camp Mercury in Iraq should not come as a surprise.
After all, the man is fallible. What is of greater significance is that the unanswered questions which the MEK leadership tried so hard over the past three years to sweep under the carpet have now infiltrated into the body of the organisation. Questions about Rajavi’s relations with Saddam Hussein, human rights abuses inside the camps and the massacre of Kurds and Shiites are no longer the questions of former members, but are rather the question of existing members.
Rajavi, having failed to fob off the ‘enemy’, is now hearing the same questions emitted from the mouth of his devotees inside the organisation. Looking back over the past, as we do at this time of year, what strikes me as most interesting is just how far the MEK has shrunk from its glory days at the time of the revolution in 1979, when it could command thousands of supporters. Now, instead of trying to set up her own regime in Iran, Maryam Rajavi is spending her entire resources on squabbling with a handful of former members – the Association – in the west. No doubt the people of Iran will be truly grateful to know that the MEK’s attention is taken up elsewhere.