Iran Interlink Weekly Digest – 209

++ Last week the MEK were happily supporting Trump’s stance toward Iran and betting on war. ‘Trump will finish Iran off’ they proclaimed to their members and anyone else who would listen to them. This week, however, they suffered a setback. Farsi commentators have pointed out that not only has Trump not abandoned the agreement, the State Department now signalled that they want to support the democratic forces inside Iran. This means abandoning pursuit of violent regime change which in turn means no support for the MEK. Iran Didban website wrote that with this the MEK suddenly jumped twenty years backward and are now completely deflated. Their former backers can’t even use them as a bargaining chip. That no longer works for them.

++ Several people remind us it is the anniversary of Maryam Rajavi’s ‘election’ as President-elect. At that time Massoud Rajavi tried to copy the power structure in Iran. He attached the label ‘President’ to her so that he would be the equivalent of Iran’s Supreme Leader. Commentators say ‘now this reason does not exist anymore, this tactic is old is getting boring, she should introduce something new.’ Some directly address the remaining members of the NCRI, asking ‘don’t you think your Council should have a change of face?’

++ The news that Somayeh Mohammadi had left the MEK and gone to the Hotel came out because several formers had seen her there. The MEK issued a long document in her name swearing at everyone and claiming that ‘no, I have not come out’. Contrary to previous items in her name – pictures, video and voice – this is only in writing. However, this handwriting does not match what they previously put out in her name. Formers in Tirana say it is obvious she is not with them, but with the pressure that the MEK, backed by the CIA, puts on ex-members in Tirana, no wonder she is afraid and denies it. We know there is a very real threat of destitution and even death, they say.

In English:

++ The Tehran Times notes in its English language paper that “only Israel and Saudi Arabia, which have both been accused of committing war crimes, have welcomed Donald Trump’s decertification of the nuclear deal and his insulting language against Iran.” The article criticises these two countries before concluding: “However like himself, Trump’s inner circle are extremely biased and stupid. For example, the State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauret wrote a tweet on Oct. 15 surprisingly saying support by Israel and Saudi Arabia showed that ‘we are doing something right’.”

++ Nejat Society reported that former MEK member Mr Javad Firouzmand attended an EU Council Anti-Terrorism meeting.

++ An article in Iran Wire (translated by Nejat Society) titled ‘What three favors Rajavi asked Saddam to do for him’, is based on the admissions of Ghorbanali Hosseinnejad, former translator of Massoud Rajavi – leader of the Mujahedin Khalq Organization – who left the group five years ago. As Rajavi’s Arabic language translator, Hosseinnejad was privy to the MEK’s relations with Saddam Hussein and his inner circle. He reveals that in 2000, Rajavi asked Saddam for three favors: an increase in the oil share to fund the MEK, support from the Iraqi army for another military attack against Iran and an increase in the number of tanks Saddam supplied. “Saddam promised to undertake the third request in case of a military operation and in exchange, he asked the group to stop advertising in favor of Israel. However, the MKO authorities who were working to get the support of Israel and the US, didn’t bear out Saddam’s demand.”

++ Gareth Porter in The American Conservative, writes a revealing article ‘Trump Trashes Iran Deal to Satisfy Netanyahu’. Porter describes how Trump is formulating his policy toward Iran based on Likud Party demands. He names Netanyahu, Jared Kushner, Sheldon Adelson and John Bolton as the key influences on Trump in this respect. He says “it was Bolton who worked with Israeli officials to plan a campaign to convince the world that Iran was secretly working on nuclear weapons. His goal was to sell key European nations on a UN Security Council resolution accusing Iran of developing a nuclear program.” The plan which involved manufacturing damning documents, was abetted by the MEK. “In the summer of 2004, a large collection of documents allegedly from a covert Iranian nuclear weapons research program was suddenly obtained by Germany’s foreign intelligence agency. Those documents became the sole alleged evidence that such a program existed. But this writer found more than one telltale sign of fraud in the papers, and a former senior German foreign office official told me on the record in March 2013 that the source who passed on the documents was a member of the Mujihadeen e-Khalq (MEK), the armed Iranian opposition group. The MEK has allegedly worked with Israel’s Mossad for some time.”

October 27, 2017

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