Saturday, August 05, 2006
AZADEGAN OPPOSITION MOVEMENT
A Message to the American People, to President George W. Bush, and to the US Congress: War in the Middle East will continue to escalate, with global consequences, as long as Iran’s clerics arm, train, and command HezbAllah, HAMAS, and the rest of the world’s jihadist terrorists ... We have known for some four years that Iran’s clerical leadership has, mostly through Syria and with active participation from Syrian Pres. Bashar al-Assad, been pouring thousands of Zalzal-2 and Fajr rockets and missiles into HezbAllah and Iranian Revolutionary Guard (Pasdaran) units in Lebanon’s Beqa’a Valley, for use against Israel. Now they are being used. And, clearly, this is only the beginning. They are the mass barrages meant to swamp regional defenses so that Iran’s strategic Shahab-3 ballistic missiles and other weapons can deliver WMD against Israel and other targets in the region. The consequences will be felt not only by Israel, but by all other regional states, and by the innocent people of Iran, who have been living in misery and terror while the Islamic Republic spends billions on terrorism and nuclear weapons. (Alan's note: workers' salaries have often not been paid for nearly a year, drinking water has become unavailable throughout many parts of the country as the systems have fallen into disrepair). It is critical to understand that the small number of clerics who dominate Iran do not represent the Iranian population, or even Persian or Muslim traditions. They fight to ensure their own continued control of Iran, and to expand their own power. The continuance in power of the clerics threatens not only Israel, but all of the peoples of Iran, the Middle East, and the Caucasus: Muslims, Jews, Christians, and others. The damage to global stability, as well as to the prosperity and well-being of the region, has been profound since the so-called Iranian revolution of 1979. But the situation is likely to become much worse, unless the Iranian People are empowered to act against the clerics. Iran’s Opposition is Now United ... in the desire to remove the Mullahs! There are many strands to Iran’s opposition movements: monarchists, socialists, nationalists, and so on. They have on occasion been accused of disunity. But one umbrella leadership organization with an untainted record — Azadegan — helps unify them all by supporting their common objectives, which include: An end to clerical rule, and the introduction of representative Government for all of Iran; The preservation and strengthening of Iran’s sovereignty and historical borders; Peaceful and cooperative Iranian participation within the global trading and social systems. Azadegan President Dr Assad Homayoun — an internationally renowned diplomat and scholar — has said, in the organization’s Vision document, that a new Iran, under moderate leadership, can end generations of competition within the Middle East. A new, moderate Iran can act as a guarantor of the sovereignty of other regional states, ending the covert support of terrorist groups, and ushering in a new era of regional economic development which would truly transform the economic outlook of the Middle East, Central Asia and the Caucasus, the Levant, and the Maghreb and Mediterranean trading basin. The Clerics Need Confrontation to Survive … Iran’s ruling clerics are divided among themselves, but are united in one thing: the knowledge that an international war can force the nation to rally around them. Khomeini, on the brink of being removed by popular discontent, saw this in 1982, and embraced war with Iraq, saving the clerical administration. Armageddon-minded Pres. Ahmadi-Nejad is even more fatalistic, and would not hesitate to apocalytically sacrifice a million Iranian lives in order to survive in power. It will take creative planning to ensure that the present crisis results in the restoration of moderate leadership to Iran, without the region and the world being plunged into major conflict. But there are options. And there is a viable, experienced team of leaders capable of re-shaping Iran. Azadegan is available to help manage the process of change in Iran; it has the experience and integrity to help ensure an outcome which will be in the best interests of the Iranian people, the region, and the global community. There are 50-million Iranians (out of a population of around 70 million) under 25 years of age, an awesome social force which can rapidly change the equation in Iran. A Free Iran Can Be at the Core of Peace and Prosperity in the Middle East! The Azadegan Foundation believes that there will be no risk to those nations giving moral and political support to Iranians in their struggle for freedom: No need for covert action - no need for US funding or direct US military action. What is needed from the international community is its enthusiastic, open and direct support of the Iranian people to establish democracy. We call for the international community to express support for the Iranian people who demand an end to their oppression. Dr Assad Homayoun is President of the Azadegan Foundation, a registered tax-exempt, nonprofit organization [501(c)3] of Iranians and others, dedicated to the freedom and democracy and establishment of a freely-elected secular Government in Iran. It seeks the support of all expatriates in this objective at this critical moment in Iran’s history. Inquiries should be addressed to: AzadeganFoundation PO Box 40152, Washington, DC 20016, United States of America. Fax 202-363-5985 Azadegan’s symbol is a modernistic version of the ancient Persian symbol “Faravahar”, which can still be seen on many ancient as well as modern buildings and structures, particularly in Persepolis. Faravahar is the essence and spirit of goodness, found in every person and thing. It has been expounded upon in the Zoroastrian religious classic, the Avesta. It is also the name of the first month of the Persian year. It symbolizes the good, and is the custodian of goodness, and the guardian of “Iran Zamin”: “Our Land”. It also symbolizes a clear-visoned being, who is the culmination of man’s quest to reach the zenith of humanity. www.AzadeganIran.com Alan's note: I do not normally promote any specific group, not even the Monarchy with which I was close, though you may cite my recent retrospective article about the late Shah, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi as belying my comment. The Monarchy is not a political party, it is an umbrella under which political parties could operate with a constitutional "referee" to keep them less at each other's throats. I know Dr. Homayoun and his squeaky clean mind sets. With few others in the way of decent minded opposition leaders present or on the horizon, who care more for their country than for their personal political careers or political "isms", proferring Azadegan seems a logical action. There are "street level" people like Ahmad Batebi etc., who might help rally crowds (if they survive the next few weeks) but have neither the experience nor mental stature to be leaders of a country. And others, also street level, like Akbar Ganji, a former Revolutionary Guard torturer, might find themselves under indictment for crimes against their people and not a place at the table of leadership. By contrast we have a plethora of Mullah shills, who appear ever more frequently - like Vali Nasr, recently on talk shows and TV, such as the Charlie Rose show, which has been an apologist for the Islamic Regime, proclaiming the need to talk and negotiate with the Islamic regime. He and others like him, know the American mentality approves of "talking to resolve" and will thus split any unified mind set to do away with their Mullah masters. Their sheep's clothing is that they want to prevent military intervention that could harm innocent civilians. One such person - with a marked lack of logic in the end - stated on Rush Limbaugh's Friday call in program - that the West should incite civil unrest instead of planning military intervention or bombing. By estimates, in bombing pre-determined 5,000 military targets and a 400,000 military personnel eradication of the Iranian Mullah and Revolutionary Guard or Bassiji power, there would be some 30,000 civilian collateral deaths. Which gives pause. But, the illogic of the caller went along these lines: Incite civil disobedience so that thousands would come into the streets to oppose the Mullahs, THEN if the Mullahs under Ahmadi-Nejad killed several hundred thousand of them, the UN, the West and "others" would be forced to take action and destroy the Mullahs!! Thus, instead of killing 400,000 military personnel and some 30,000 civilians, after the death of a similar number of innocent civilians pushed into the streets by Western campaigns, we would then kill another 400,000 military pesonnel - in addition to the civilian casualties we cause by promoting civil disobedience. And NO, Ahmadi-Nejad and his Hojatieh mind set, having spent $250 million in re-equipping, arming and modernizing the mostly Arab mercenary Bassiji para-military, whose task is to suppress street demonstrations, will not hesitate (as did the Shah) to set off a bloodbath and destroy multiple thousands of demonstrators, who dare oppose this brutal regime.