This past week we saw Saddam Hussein paraded in front of an Iraqi Court of Justice. He was, for sure, a brutal and evil dictator. But did he act alone?
Every time I see him, I am reminded of the connection between the United States and his brutality. After all the US maintained over 20 years of diplomatic relations with Saddam and supplied him with money (loan guarantees) to purchase a vast arsenal of arms including precursors for chemical agents . which he in turn used on Iranian as well as his own population! But I will not go there.
Then most recently I started wondering why none of his charges involve war crimes against Iran, when he ordered the use of banned chemical agents against Iranians.but then again since the Mullahs in Iran do not seem to care and have publicly forgiven Iraq's billions of dollars in war debts (for reparations after the Iran-Iraq War) then why should the new Iraqi regime care… and add to Saddam's charges?
But as Iranians, we there is one other issue which is also very serious hiding in the midst of Saddam's criminal case: The (so called) Iranian exiled opposition group “Mojahedin-e-Khalq” Organization actually assisted Saddam in carrying out serious atrocities in Iraq against Iraqis and Kurds!
In fact one of crimes Saddam Hussein is being tried for is the suppression of the 1991 Iraqi Shiites and Kurds during a post 'Gulf War uprising' (encouraged by George Bush [Senior]). It is reported that the Mojahedins played a very significant role in squelching these 'insurgencies'. In fact the Mojahedins, we are told, were very brutal – killing a good number of innocent civilians. As more evidence becomes public, I am sure more details will emerge, but their involvement is without question.
I recently read an article in the very influential Foreign Policy Review Journal claiming that the “Mojahedin-e-Khalq Organization is the largest and most militant group opposed to the Islamic Republic of Iran.” [Also see here] Frankly this claim is an embarrassment. The Mojahedins themselves are an embarrassment too!
As ordinary exiled Iranians, is this really the best we can do to establish a viable opposition in exile? Is this the best we can do? Really?
In case you do not know and are wondering who the Mojahedins really are, here's a quick primer: They were originally formed in the 1960s by college-educated children of Iranian merchants, that developed a blend of Islamic and Marxist ideologies designed to entice working class Iranians into countering the Shah's regime. The Mojahedins, by their own estimates, number in the tens of thousands of members worldwide.
The Mojahedins ended up becoming one of the most militant opposition groups to the Shah – and were very much involved in the escalation of the revolution – that brought about the very “Islamic” regime we now have. Then, after the revolution, they fell out with Khomeini's gang and were sent either to jail or exile in Iraq. Without the Mojahedin's assistance there might never have been a revolution or perhaps the kind of revolution Iran had. In effect, the Mojahedin's hold a great deal of responsibility for Iran's demise.
In fact during their hay day after the revolution, the Mojahedin supported the US embassy hostage crisis. And before the revolution they were responsible for the killing of a US defense contractor in the '70s during the Shah's reign. After their exile from Iran they formed a military base in Iraq and joined forces with Saddam against the regime in Iran but were also used by Saddam for 'internal” operations i.e. killing literally hundreds maybe thousands of Iraqi dissidents [including Kurds, Shiites, etc]).
Isn't it even more embarrassing that the 'largest' opposition group to the brutal Islamic theocracy in Iran is supposed to be another “brutal Islamic group”?
I do not understand, why no one has arrested the joint heads of the Mojahedins – Masoud Rajavi and his current wife (which by the way was his best friends wife (Maryam), which he 'befriended' while he was in Jail) – and put them on trial with the Saddam Hussein. In fact why isn't anyone asking why 3800 Mojahedins in Iraq are being given political asylum? Shouldn't they be hanged for their brutality?
Everyone's talking about separating religion and politics.and meanwhile Iran's largest opposition group is another Islamic group. It's a joke. And we keep hearing about the brutality of the regime in Iran.and meanwhile Iran's largest opposition group has its hands covered with blood.
In this new era of bring freedom and liberty to the Middle East, we have an active opposition group, that supported Saddam's dictatorship, and is anything but democratic itself.essentially within an iron fist grip of Masoud and Maryam Rajavi .still in charge after more than two decades.
And let's not forget that after 9/11 there's been a cataclysmic shift in policy to proactively 'go after' terrorists – and meanwhile the US government has basically absolved and released the Mojahedin in Iraq.yet maintained the group on its list of terrorist groups. What hypocrisy?
To be sure, the Mojahedin's do have a formidable intelligence network in Iran – and especially now while the US remains impotent, it is useful to have this network collect information for the CIA. But is it a reliable intelligence network, or is it a phony network designed to fool the United States?
Consider for example a senior leader at the Mojahedin camp in Iraq, who had been debriefed in Europe prior to the US invasion of Iraq. He claimed that Saddam had hidden vials of chemical agents within the Mojahedin camp. This information in turn was then used to justify the claim that Saddam was hiding weapons of mass destruction. And here we are several years after the invasion . several billions of dollars and 2000 death later.no weapons!
Meanwhile, Iran's Mullahs had their arch enemy (Saddam Hussein) eliminated for them by the US (with US Tax payer's money). Can the Mojahedins be a credible source of information? Is it worth giving them immunity for this kind of information?
And then one has to ask, what would happen – if the Mojahedins come to power in Iran? What will happen if like Bin Laden . the Mojahedin blow back?
The choice for the “West” is very simple. Should they support Islamic Marxists (the Mojahedins) or leave Iran's Islamic Fascists (which is basically what the Mullah's Regime in Iran is) alone. It's a no-brainer. They'll choose the Mullahs over the Mujadedin any day of the week. America just spent 5 decades defeating Marxism! And I'll bet every time there's a meeting at the Whitehouse or Whitehall to look at their options with Iranian opposition groups abroad and see the “largest” Iranian force being these morons (the Mojahedin) .and then give the Mullah's another chance.another year.another time.
Shame on us. We deserve the Mullahs.if the Mojahedin are the best opposition group we can muster. The very presence of the Mojahedins is itself a reinforcement of the regime in Iran.
If I was a Mullah in the regime, I would be advocating a way to finance the Mojahedins and make sure they remain at the forefront of the foreign opposition groups – because then the 'West' will have no choice but to continue supporting the Mullahs. It's ironic, but strangely true. The Mojahedins are in effect a false opposition.
Note that there are over 1 Million Iranians residing as a Diaspora in the West. I realize everyone of us is bogged down neck deep in debt working hard to make a living, with barely enough time to even attend to our families .but is this the best opposition group we can muster up?