The Mojahedin Khalq has performed yet another volte-face (complete reversal) today, which is characteristic of the online presence of this group. When a screenshot of the MEK’s official website praising the actions and achievements of ISIS was widely circulated and universally condemned in June, the MEK panicked. Now, on a different website, (National Council of Resistance of Iran or NCRI) the MEK has retracted that position and claims not only that it doesn’t support ISIS but that the ‘Iranian regime’ has put about this rumour in order to engineer a massacre of the residents of Camp Liberty – a camp which the MEK refuses to open to outside help.
In spite of its expensive and sophisticated look, the online life of the MEK/NCRI is becoming more and more inconsistent, with the group issuing statements and news items one day which are retracted and removed a week later when the negative impact of what they said hits home. Over its history, the MEK has been unable to maintain a clear message. Once it boasted of killing Americans in Iran in the 1970s – ‘Let’s make Iran another Vietnam’ was the headline banner – only to deny this during its campaign to be removed from the US terrorism list in 2012. It boasted the embassy sieges in 1992 and again denied this later. The MEK has several times embraced as ‘martyrs’ operatives sent on terrorist missions, only to denounce them later as ‘agents of the Iranian regime’ when it was found they were not actually killed in these operations.
The problem for the MEK is not so much the inconsistency of these messages; that can be put down to incompetent propaganda and desperate expediency. The problem is that so many eye witnesses are vocal in speaking the truth and so much factual evidence exists to back their claims, that it is impossible for the group to escape not only its past, but also its present crimes and failures.
An example of this is the claim in this latest statement that the MEK “has never interfered in the internal affairs of Iraq”. Yet there is a video of Maryam Rajavi ordering her combatants to ‘take the Kurds under your tanks and save your bullets for the Revolutionary Guards’, as the MEK followed orders from Saddam Hussein in 1991 to suppress the Kurdish uprising which followed the First Gulf War. Sadly for Rajavi, survivors of this massacre cannot be airbrushed out of history to suit the current MEK position.
It is interesting that the MEK’s new position of denying any links or sympathies with ISIS or Al Qaida is accompanied with the accusation that this is ‘disinformation by the mullah’s regime’ with the goal of “preparing the ground for a large scale massacre of Iranian refugees, members of PMOI, in Camp Liberty.”
Putting aside the contradiction that members of a paramilitary group cannot also be described as refugees, what does the MEK really mean?
The MEK initially sent out messages of support for ISIS because they believed the group would overrun Iraq, take control of the Diyala province and restore the MEK to Camp Ashraf which the Iraqi government had forced them to evacuate a year ago. When this failed the MEK now anticipate a Sunni backlash against the Shiite populations and, although not aimed at the Diyala province, have re-worked this narrative to suit a dual purpose – to encourage or actually engineer a deadly attack on the residents of Camp Liberty which can be subsequently blamed on Iran, and which will rid the Rajavis of a few more potential eye witnesses to their crimes before they can be brought to safety in the West.
If this sounds overly cynical let us not overlook one aspect of the MEK’s online life which is at least consistent, that is, its unfailing support for non-democratic forces the world over. The MEK never declare support for democratic movements or groups but always side with terrorist groups. Even its denial of support for ISIS is couched in bizarre, suspect terms. The MEK says “crimes” such as blowing up Shiite shrines is “inhumane”, but there is no mention of the shocking murders which took place in Mosul and elsewhere.
Indeed, from its initial praise of ISIS to news about a landslide in Iran, the MEK is curiously selective in its support. For years the people of Gaza have suffered greatly under the programme of ethnic cleansing by the Zionist political leaders of Israel and supporters and enablers of Zionism in the West. The MEK have not reported on this, let alone voiced an opinion. The MEK knows instinctively that it needs to support Israel, while at the same time trying to blame Iran, so the important news they have published is about the suffering of the illegal settlers under attack from Iranian-made missiles. Such a stance could only arise from a conflict of interests inside the MEK, and shows that not only is the MEK’s political system collapsing but the brain behind it is collapsing too.
Massoud Rajavi still believes he is the leader of an independent cultic group which will, and can, obey his every whim. Maryam Rajavi in Paris serves a different reality. She must obey paymasters and protectors whose agenda is only to use the MEK as long as it is useful and discard it should it prove unhelpful. Between these two positions a kind of poisonous rot has set in which both Rajavis are powerless to change or control.
No matter how slick and well financed the MEK’s propaganda is, if it doesn’t maintain a consistent message it is worse than useless, it becomes ridiculous. Maryam Rajavi should ignore the whims of her husband Massoud and take a leaf from the book of her Zionist masters whose false ‘victim’ narrative and blatant lies are at least consistent if not truthful.