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What’s remained of the MKO?

The June22 gathering of the Mujahedin Khalq Organization (MKO) in Paris was first of all a multi-national rally despite what the group’s propaganda labels it: “the Greatest Iranian Gathering”.

The alleged dozen thousands of attendees who participated the gathering actually included 500 parliamentarian What’s remained of the MKO?and politicians from over 50 countries,” but also Russian and polish immigrants not very aware of their struggle and taking advantage of free bus trip from Germany, hailed the “mother” of the movement, President of the National Council of Resistance of Iran [Maryam Rajavi],” reported Christophe Ayad of Le Monde. [1]

The Le Monde journalist notifies American leading role at the event: "Saturday at Villepinte, the Mojahedin could rely on the support of French personalities: Michele Alliot-Marie. Ingril Betancourt, Christine Ockrent. But the show was primarily American. on the attendance sheet, you could list four generals, including a former national security advisor to Barack Obama, James Jones ,a former head of FBI, Louis Freeh, a former director of the CIA, Porter Goss, and four members of Congress, including the conservative Newt Gingrich, former candidate for the Republican nomination. Not to mention the former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani. A very neo-conservative Areopagus in fact. Former Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Zapatero was also present.”[2]

Bob Filner former US congressman and the new mayor of San Diego, was among the dozen MKO’s American sponsors who has been advocating for the group in response  to the group’s generous offers of speaking fees, first-class trips and luxurious hotels . Trent Seibert of UT San Diego puts, "Mayor Bob Filner just returned from Paris but declined on Thursday to answer questions about the travel or who paid for it." The author reports that the new mayor seemed reluctant to clarify the reasons of his trip," Filner briefly told reporters at a news conference that the trip was not a “junket,” but a “business trip which is to get jobs to San Diego.”[3]

Dean Calbreath of the Daily Transcript also notes that Filner has not responded to requests for information about the event, but in two previous trips –taken while he was a congressman – he has described it as a “grand meeting of Iranians in support of human rights and democracy“, where he could meet Iranian advocates of greater religious freedom and women’s rights. [4]

But why is a US prominent figure so scared of revealing the motivations for his participation in an Iranian opposition’s rally? It seems that following the June 14 presidential election in Iran where near 72 percent voted and chose their president elect; Mr. Filner himself finds it odd to attend an anti-Iran event. Besides, if he explains about his motivations, He will have to reveal the fee he was paid by the group for the expenses of his trip to the French Capital.

The Daily Transcript criticizes the Mayor Bob Filner for “spending a couple of days with groups hoping to topple the current government of Iran” instead of being present at San Diego City Hall. The author of the article warns about the threat of the group that is embraced by Mr. Mayor referring to Maryam Rajavi’s address in the event. “And in her speech on Saturday, Rajavi also made clear that she was not afraid of bloodshed in the struggle to achieve those goals”, he suggests.[5]

Speaking of the MKO agent in Clorado, T.Mehdi Qaemi a real estate broker, Calbreath gives accounts of large amounts of money US figures are paid for the group’s advocacy. He states: “The push to get the MEK off the list, which occurred in July 2012, included a well-funded lobbying campaign that brought US politicians to the group’s headquarters in France. Ghaemi a broker with the Alborz Real Estate Co. in Greenwood Village, Col., paid $7,487 for Filner’s first class airfare and hotel accommodations in a 2007 trip and $7988 in 2011, although he never contributed to political campaigns.”[6]

Besides numerous government officials who were generously received at the MKO rally, the group launched a massive campaign to make the Villepinte hall look bursting by Iranian –actually non-Iranians – waving flags, chanting slogans. On June 27, Radio Free Europe published the diary of a Kyrgyz student studying in Prague, Alina Alymkoulova who was recruited by the group propaganda arm to attend Villepinte gathering. Alina reveals facts about the MKO’s rent-a-crowd assembly. “Most of the “protesters” were young and obviously students like me” she recounts. “I met many Russians, Ukrainians, Czechs, and students from Asian countries who were all recruited via the Internet.”[7]

About the atmosphere of the deceitful MKO-run rally in the suburb of Paris she says, "As we exited the bus, I resigned myself to the idea that running away was not an option — people were guarding the area.”[8]

Alina and his companions on the bus were not the only non-Iranians who were brought to the MKO Show. “The endless sight of buses from many different countries was somewhat alarming”, she notices. There were a lot more travelers from all over Europe who did not even agree about whether they were going to a rally "in support of human rights" in  Iran or Iraq! [9]

Although the MKO spokesman, Shahin Qobadi severely denies Alina’s report on his group’s fraudulent methods to rent a crowd calling it as "suspicious". Alina’s story is not the only one to reveal details about lack of MKO’s popularity among Iranians. There are also numerous photos and videos on the presence of non-Iranian especially Africans on MKO rallies in previous years – that were widely reported following the MKO’s earlier rallies.

The past experiences of Villepinte rally have taught the MKO to be more careful about the non-Iranian participants. As Alina States this year “cameras were not allowed” and non-Iranians were seated on the black rows of that hall.

Definitely the MKO show in Paris was not an Iranian demonstration at all. The major authorities speaking at the hall were mostly American; the attendees were deceived to take a trip in Paris almost for free. Not a single Iranian except the she-guru of the cult, Maryam Rajavi addressed the crowd because none of the Iranian intellectuals –even those who oppose Islamic Republic – care about the MKO if they do not hate it.  

By Mazda Parsi


[1]Ayad, Christophe and Imbert, Louis, Show à l’américaine pour les Moudjahidine du people, Le Monde, June 26, 2013


[3]Seibert,Trent, LITTLE FROM MAYOR ABOUT TRIP TO PARIS, UT San Diego, June 28, 2013

 [4]CalBreath, Dean,Filner visits Iranian resistance in Paris, The Daily Transcipt, June 27,2013



[7]Radio Free Europe/ Radio Liberty, Diary of an MKO Rent-A-Crowd Demonstrator, June27, 2013



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