I keep reading articles and blogs about all opponents of the regime uniting, and how somehow a knight needs to show up on a horse in white armor to save Iran, when in fact I think if we – yes you and I – simply decided to do 10 basic things, and we all stuck to it (i.e. really did them) we would very quickly be able to change the regime in Iran. Iranians abroad control a phenomenal amount of wealth over 1.3 trillion dollars in the U.S. alone. Iranians have power. Iranians have influence. We just need to learn to use it to our own benefit. We need to be disciplined and committed. To do anything else is betrayal of Iran and Iranians.
1) Boycott everything British. If you drive don’t fill up at a BP or Shell gas station, and don’t buy a British Car (Landrover or Mini); Don’t bank with a British banker or their subsidiaries, don’t buy insurance from Lloyds, don’t watch Fox TV or bskyb (Murdoch is a surrogate for the Brits); don’t travel on British Airways, don’t buy any British products… don’t do business with British surrogates like Dubai … there are always lots of other options. The Brits are poised and have always been poised to take advantage of Iran’s demise. Iranian oil in the Caspian Sea, they operate a defacto colony in Dubai that makes money by sanction busting exports to Iran (sanctions work to their advantage), …They organized two coups that destroyed Iranian democracy these past 100 years, and were the masterminds behind the rise of the Mullahs in the '70s– and have everything to gain by maintain the regime in Iran. If you think your boycott will have no effect – think twice. Marginal income is critically important in the profitability of these large (capital intensive) businesses. A one percent drop in revenue can be calamitous. Remember the tail wags the dog. The Brits, put on their accents, appear like experts and Americans suck it up. If you want to influence US policy make it difficult for the Brits to sustain their policies against Iranians. If you live in Britain – leave (that’s what I did). If you are stuck there, then buy foreign cars and boycott home made goods.
2) Boycott the ultra- Religious/ Fascist/Tea Party Crowd. Remember your interests and immigrant interests are identical. Radical Christianity is just as dangerous as Radical Islam. In fact Radical Christians need Radical Islam to sustain their gravy train. There really is no difference between the Christian Right and Muslim Right. Their definition of government is the very same, God somehow anoints Preachers and the people need to serve the interests of these Preachers as agents for God. It’s not government for the people, by the people; they believe that its government for God, by the Preachers (his sole agents)...any way they decide to interpret God’s will! The people are considered sheep, and clue less. Only Preachers know what is right and wrong. This by the way, is totally contrary to the very construct of the US constitution that makes every single person equally an agent of God with God given rights that are inalienable – i.e. cannot be taken away from them by others (i.e. taken away by Preachers or Mullahs or their Police Force). In a true free and democratic system – all votes are equal; everyone can stand for office…not the chosen few.
3) Vote – wherever you are – Vote (and participate in politics). More than money, more than prominence through your job or social status, votes matter more than anything else. Believe me, the politicians know who votes. The Jewish community in the U.S. has figured this out. They cluster in groups, and vote as a block Small majorities are the norm. Many districts are won or lost on very small percentages. I would go as far as to say, the Iranian community in Las Vegas made the critical difference in electing Harry Reid (Dem. Majority Leader - Senate) against an openly racist, openly anti-immigrant Tea Party candidate. Vote, brother, vote.
4) Work Hard – be successful, gain influence. Your success is not just about feeding your family, or giving your children support and confidence. But, the wealthier you are, the more prominent you are – the more (in the long run) you can influence US policy. But don’t hand over your cash to these politicians. They’ll say anything to grab your cash. Use your prominence for influence only – to speak to them, to force them to listen to you. Remember, the Mullahs have their surrogates in the US too. Organizations like NIAC , all those Iranians at the dinner for Ahmadinejad in New York, their own TV stations … By some reports they are spending almost $80 Million a year in the US on political influence. Their influence has to be counter balanced by your influence and your ability to penetrate.
5) Spread a consistent message about “systemic change”. When you do get someone’s ear, your message needs to focus on Systemic change not individuals or political factions and how large a market the whole region could become once Iran reforms. This way regardless of our political or philosophical differences, we can all unite about the need for real freedoms and democracy in Iran. There is a fundamental fact and that is under the current and previous regimes, there were no institutions that guaranteed basic freedoms and democracy in Iran. This, in my opinion is the most significant treachery of the Islamic elite in Iran. When candidates are preselected, and over half of the Majlis are former IRGC guards; and when the police and guard forces are defacto extensions of the theocratic oppression, there is very simply, no matter what your political persuasion is, a need for fundamental change. We need a new political system.
6) Don’t Believe Western Political Rhetoric. The regime in Iran would be gone in an instant if that was the “plan”. These politicians lie through their teeth; and posture for votes. Meanwhile decisions are made in back rooms by career civil servants. I remember an impassioned speech by New York’s former Republican Senator Al D’Amato against Iran and the Mullahs to some poor state department person unlucky enough to find himself at a Senate Hearing (D’Amato had received a lot of money from Iranians on Long Island) – meanwhile, that same week Reagan was sending Bible’s to Rafsanjani via Oliver North. It is in current “western” interest to have Iran surrounded, subdued, and essentially impotent, while they target oil and gas fields and other precious mineral resources around Iran that they can exploit. More land and sovereignty has been given away by the Mullahs to Iran’s neighbors than by any regime in Iran’s recent past. We have essentially given away 38% of the Caspian Sea, and claims to virtually half the Persian Gulf (now named the Arabian Gulf …by the US Navy). I really would not be surprised if there is an invasion of Iran, and the whole country eventually gets cut up into 5 states. The Mullahs are a great way to scare domestic populations into spending more money on defense systems…and persuading Iran’s wealthy neighbors to buy expensive arms. They serve Western Interests very well. But you, are now living here; and can have a real say on what the governments here do …and what lies they get away with…and you can hold them accountable.
7) Be Proud of your Iranian heritage. Forget about your Anglicized name cut out the Freddy if you really Fereidoon, or Mo if you’re really Mohammad…Be proud of who you are, where you come from, what you represent, and don’t let anyone put you or your family down. Just cause you live here you don’t have to prostitute yourself and your cultural heritage. Go to Pennsylvania and see how the Amish people have maintained their culture for hundreds of years … Go to Brooklyn in New York and see how the Hassidim Jews have maintained their culture and even links to Israel and then understand that you do not have to sell out to succeed here. If you have self-respect, then others will respect you and your point of view. The greatest thing you can do to topple the regime in Iran is to preserve your dignity. My simple position is that the Mullahs in Iran are the biggest enemies of Islam; and what they are doing there does not represent Islam at all…just like a Pedophile Catholic Priest with a fetish for young boys does not represent the Catholic Church. You will gain credibility and value and be even more influential if you stay true to your heritage. Give your children real Persian names, wherever you are.
8) Use Real Persian Words when you communicate. Avoid Arabic words that have filtered into Farsi. The language of the Mullahs is Arabic, and their insistence on the use of Arabic is humiliating to Iranians who do in fact have their own distinct language and culture. In the same way that Ferdowsi preserved the Persian language during the Arab conquest of Iran, we should look at these Mullahs as foreign invaders, and preserve our language and culture.
9) Don’t travel to Iran. Travel to Iran is the regime’s secret weapon in silencing opponents. Many Iranians fear involvement in anti-regime politics because they want to be able to travel to Iran freely, and are worried about being arrested in Iran. If you simply decide not to go, suddenly you’re liberated; and your activity can begin. If every single ex-pat Iranian got involved in anti-regime effort outside Iran, trust me the regime in Iran would be under much greater pressure and could collapse. Besides, liberating you, understand that travel to Iran, is a defacto way of pumping money into the regime in Iran. Its income for the regime. Everything from renewing your passport, to airport fees, to spending money inside Iran – it’s all money that finds its way to the religious elite who control everything. Traveling to Iran is a defacto recognition and acceptance of this regime.
10) Preserve Real Persian Traditions and avoid engaging with the Religious Establishment. Continue to celebrate Iranian New Year in the Spring and associated holidays like jumping over little bon fires. Tell your sons and daughters, cousins, relatives not to mix with or engage with Sons and daughters of the Religious elite. Avoid visiting or going to Mosques. Maintain a separate existence. In the long run mingling with them will be detrimental, for they will all be gone soon enough. There is no question about that.
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