The Mujahedin khalq Organization (the MKO) is a destructive cult by any criteria. It is a cult because of many reasons. One of the most significant reasons is that it cannot handle criticism. However, criticism is regularly applied inside the cult –to keep members brainwashed — but not against the cult leaders. In fact, self-criticism and confession are part of the methodology of the destructive cults including the MKO.
Members of the group are tasked with reporting all their 24/7 thoughts, emotions and dreams to their senior officials, they have to criticize themselves or their peers for any natural thought that might –according to the cult regulations – distract them from the aim of the group but they are never allowed to criticize or question their superior ones. Criticizing the leaders of the group makes you the most disgusting creature in the cult that deserves the most horrific punishments.
Javad Firouzmand, a former member of the MKO revealed parts of suppressive conduct by the group senior officials against members in the MKO camps who were willing to leave the group or had declared their defection from the group. He described the way Mehdi Abrishamchi –the so-called chairman of the Peace Commission of the National Council of Resistance— treated the 400 cult members who were not willing to stay in the group any more. The entire 400 dissident members were accused of being “the spies of the regime”, as Mr. Firouzmand reminds. “He [Abrishamchi] definitely remembers the time he handed a number of defectors and dissidents of the group to Saddam Hussein forces. They were then imprisoned in AbuQuraib where they would be tortured and die and no one would know about their fate,” Firouzmand wrote. 
He also notes the MKO’s dreadful ability to fabricate documents against critic members. He recalls the night when Abrishamchi came to his cell in Ashraf prison and asked him to sign a paper or he would be put to death. The document was supposed to prove that he had been arrested by the MKO forces in front of Iranian embassy in Baghdad a few hours after he had escaped the camp. As Firouzmand states he had never gone to Iranian embassy but actually he had been arrested by Iraqi security forces in the house of an Iraqi merchant! He was threatened to death when he didn’t accept to sign the paper. Later he was forced to sign some documents just in order to survive!
The waves of dissent among MKO supporters outside the camps and rank and file inside the camps who are constantly offended by the mind controlling, oppressive and cult-like system of the group, flooded by the group’s propaganda, deprived from their most basic human rights, have amplified the bankruptcy of the group. Indeed, in recent years the group has struggled hard to survive rather than struggling to allegedly overthrow the Islamic Republic.
Ann Singleton is another former member of the group, Middle East Strategy Consultants, Author of “Saddam’s Private Army” and “The life of Camp Ashraf”. She notifies the MKO’s undemocratic weird attitude toward any criticism. As Mrs. Singleton puts those who recently distanced themselves from the group by tenderly criticizing some of the leaders’ functions “have been stunned by the vitriolic attacks the MEK launched against them”. 
“The Rajavis of course claim that anyone who speaks out against them, particularly the former members, has been recruited by the IRI and sent to destroy the MEK as part of a malicious, murderous plan.” Singleton writes. “Yet where is the evidence of this?”, she asks.
The cult-like substance of the MKO undermines any efforts by the group to get the gesture of a democratic alternative to Iranian government. Jeremia Goulka who is one of the co- authors of the RAND report on the MKO, suggests that the MEK vigorously denies that it is a cult, accusing critics of working for the Iranian regime or performing inadequate research. “However, I studied the MEK in depth and over a period of many months for the U.S. military,” he writes. He describes his experience of visiting Camp Ashraf:
“I visited Camp Ashraf, the MEK facility 40 miles north of Baghdad, and interviewed MEK members, former MEK members, and dozens of military and civilian officials. Along with almost all of my interviewees and Human Rights Watch, I concluded that the MEK is a cult. It employs many common cult practices: mandated celibacy and divorce, thought control, sleep deprivation, and forced labor. It segregates men from women, separates families and friends – who must seek permission just to converse – and even tells family members back home that the members are dead.” 
“While its propaganda arm espouses Western values to Western audiences, the MEK continues to force-feed its doctrine to members who may not criticize the Rajavis and are not free to leave the Ashraf compound,” he notes.  Referring to Maryam Rajavi’s propaganda against the Iranian nuclear program, Goulka warns Western supporters of the group about the risk of advocating a group that he absolutely sees a cult.
By Mazda Parsi
 Goulka, Jeremiah, INVESTIGATIONS BEGIN INTO MEK SUPPORTERS UP, Salon.com, March 28, 2012
 Goulka, Jeremiah, THE IRAN WAR HAWKS’ FAVORITE CULT GROUP, Salon.com, March 28, 2012