“Dear Senator McCain,
I have intentionally waited several weeks before writing this letter in order to eradicate any notion that my objection to you giving validation to cult figures such as Mrs. Maryam Rajavi and hailing her and her followers as promoters of democratic ideals and values, is merely a knee jerk reaction to a behavior I have found reprehensible.
As a former Iranian diplomat who has been injected into political activism as a consequence of the Iranian revolution, I have had the misfortune of watching my country’s decline over the years as it has shifted from one crisis into another. I have repeatedly witnessed the emergence and disappearance or decline of numerous political figures – mostly honorable and well intentioned individuals with democratic agendas – whose well intentioned and noble efforts have simply fallen short of what is required for making any kind of meaningful impact with our people at home or loosening the foundations of the regime that has presided over them since 1979. Over the years, despite a constant plethora of perhaps justified but mainly self serving ranting aimed at the Iranian ruling establishment, I do not recall witnessing personalities of your caliber ever make public appearances or deliver any kind of meaningful messages in support of these true proponents of democratic values in my country.
At the same time, we have sadly witnessed a number of ‘has been’ and inconsequential political figures in your country as well as some in other places compromise their reputations for unusually generous fees and associated perks – totally incompatible with their status as public speakers, in a futile endeavor to bestow legitimacy to what is otherwise a much hated and bloodstained cult organization.
Having said all this, it was quite a shock noting that a personality of your background and status had emulated the feat carried out by others much less informed about Iran and generally motivated by greed.
Given the respect I have had for you over the years, I write not to condemn you but to ask you to consider your future actions more thoroughly. I am of no doubt that you did not receive sound advice in accepting the invitation advanced to you by Mrs. Rajavi, just as I am sure you would never accept an invitation by the KKK or ever contemplate labeling followers of the late ‘Reverend Jim Jones’ and fascists as proponents of democracy.
I will end by urging you to give due consideration to the points I have raised. I seek nothing from you, as our own people irrespective of what anyone says will decide the future of Iran. But to help bring Iran into the community of peaceful nations and restore sanity and prudence in its behavior, your prescription can only aggravate matters and offer an alternative which is by far worse than the worse we have seen from Iran’s present rulers in the last 38 years…….
Mehrdad Khonsari, Facebook,