Déjà vu all over again. The Islamic Republic in Iran (IRI), in reaction to its chronically failing policies, has once again made the historic noble Nation vulnerable to civil strife and unrest and exploitative external interferences. The IRI belligerently dodges to hold itself accountable for catastrophic miseries inflicted on Iran, but instead, resorts to its ever-perpetrated premise of “keeping the oven of hegemonic threats of wars, sanctions, and martyrdom, HOT! The IRI reactionary policy is, in essence to delegitimize and quench the dissent for justice. In doing so, the IRI increasingly finds itself isolated and at a critical crossroads: 1. To allow a referendum and substantive transformation of the government and state polices now and in dire hope of self-redemption, or 2. To step aside for the indigenous succession proceedings of the regime to take hold soon. Hence, the inevitable desirable outcome via either if these two avenues, already in the works in peoples’ psyches, is not a matter of, if but when, to bring about full fruition to the nation of Iran as whole. Irrespective, one most crucial direction Iranians must and will undoubtedly avoid, is to resort or concede to hegemonic interferences especially by the US and its satellite states in the region, or through ever proliferating conservative think tanks, Foundation for Defense of Democracy among others, which advocate for costly intervention via exiled groups; the outcome of such policy recommendations and its back fire against the long term interests of the US and heavy human and capital loss alone, and/or perpetrated by [Israeli or Saudi] regimes in south/west Asia, is self-evident in today’s ever detreating calamities in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, or Yemen (review the Disclaimer in endnote).
The increasingly intensified yearning of the eighty million people of Iran to achieve the independent transformation of their government system and the Nation, and with no external interferences whatsoever, has indeed endured for 150 years. All indications are that this historic Nation several millennia in the making is at an unprecedented critical juncture so as to fulfill her yearning. After having persevered through myriad socio-economic shortcomings and political impasse of the past 40 years, especially inflicted from within but also meddled from without, Iranians are now resiliently resolved more than ever to indigenously and peacefully transform their sovereign and secured Nation to the next much desired secular [multi-parties] democratic government, which must be anchored on the true essence of the rule of law and of checks and balances. In such context, the universally subscribed principles of liberty, equality, justice and the pursuits of happiness for all, epitomize the ideals of all Iranians. Otherwise, status quo, i.e., business as usual by the IRI, is not any longer viable but rather not only extremely dangerous to the future of Iran, but that it will also lead to the complete demise of the IRI regime stakeholders.
The quasi-progressive Revolution of 1906 led to the adoption of the Constitution in part modeled on the Belgian Constitution and well integrated with the national identity, culture and heritage of Iran. It meant to transform the absolute monarchy nearly 3,000 years in place into the democratic parliamentary system, the royal king or queen symbolically at the helm, and with checks of and balances for the separation of the three branches of the government. However, Reza Shah Pahlavi and his successor Mohammad Reza Shah somewhat trampled over the said Constriction through meddling into government affairs in the name of the urgent need for rapid modernization of Iran. In retrospect, many believe westoxifcation arrived in Iran by way of this rapid modernization. Simply stated, the equally crucial political reforms took a back seat again for another seven decades. And so, the repetition once again of history! In addition, the Shah who had presumable served the primary interests of the Anglo-American since his return in the mid1950’s, had begun exerting his independence from them by leading to fund the OPEC while unilaterally setting oil and gas prices-directions unacceptable to Americans and the British.
The Islamic Republic (IRI) was established following a hastily run referendum with one question posed by its founder the ayatollah Rouh-Allah Khomeini: “Do you agree with an Islamic republic in Iran?” Yes or No? The majority answer “Yes” was more of a “No” to previous single party regime than an affirmation of an unclear vision for the future of the government. Moving fast forward, the Nation of Iran has once again found itself in a dichotomy: should she continue to allow the current IRI to peacefully transform itself into a secular, inclusive, democratic and truly multi-party system of administering the country and as anchored on an immediate national referendum as observed and verified by independent NGOs worldwide; or, in lieu of the lingering IRI promises never kept, for the Nation to reluctantly resort to the less desirable but independent struggle of replacement of the current regime? Either way, the aspiration of Iranians for a secular and democratic government will inextricably be impeded again if the external hegemonies interfere militarily, economically or through their support of expired exiled groups or internal dissents. Such overt or covert actions will undoubtedly extend the lifeline of the IRI as it continues to be even more intransigently belligerent for repressions, by dodging and deflecting its failed policies on the incursions by the US and its allies; consequently, this will in turn destabilize Iran and the region into an even more catastrophic chaos whereby only the military industrial and economic conglomerates and their puppet despots as Saudi Arabia and Israel among others, are the prime beneficiaries; Ironically, the Armageddon-like scale of costs in human and material loss will as usual be borne by the indigenous peoples of the region but also above all, by the American taxpayers and unjust loss of their children in foreign lands. In contrast, a peaceful and non-interference approach will bring trust and confidence which are necessary for the mutual benefits of the peoples of both the US and Iran.
The Bill of Particulars of the IRI “Monarchy”:
The Islamic Republic in Iran, IRI, has, over the past forty years, simply replaced a non-religious monarchy with a religious monarchy. IRI is inter-woven into a web of deceit, failure, hypocrisy, and injustice all anchored on self-serving and at times conflicting (mis-) interpretation of Islamic codes of jurisprudence, resorted to dictatorship and repression, corruption and vulnerable economic inequity, as well as fatal breaches on the sovereignty/security of the Nation and above all citizens’ [human, natural, civil] rights and due process. Despite the ebbing of public hope after the latest series of independent and spontaneous uprisings and the ever-intensifying impasse from within and outside Iran, meaningful efforts should still continue for the pivotal transformation of the current government into one that genuinely addresses the above mentioned goals for the Nation. Concurrently however, efforts must also be devoted to facilitate educational and empowerment processes towards a referendum, be it leading to transformation from within IRI or beyond and for the sake of national unity, whereby the Iranian people resolve for a transitionary custodial government, leading to a new permanent government system, if the fundamental and not cosmetic transformation within the IRI fails again.
Irrespective of the specific course of either actions, every safeguard must be provisioned by the people to enable a peaceful transformation anchored on national unity, without any ultimate role forever by the current key IRI oligarchs and/or interference by other countries, and as well as no role for the transitionary Council Members for at least eight years following the installment of the new government. It is hence, imperative that in light of Iran’s rich history for millennia, that a secular democratic multi-party government, which truly derives its legitimacy and mandates from the people’s collective purgatives and sustains the nation’s confidence through direct voting, becomes legitimized (review endnotes.) Either way, the Shiite Islamic clerics are at best split over whether to return solely to theology and the spiritual missions in Najaf, Karbala, Kufeh or Samarrah their most sacred cities, or conceded to the more vocal ones not easily giving up the power and financial capitals they have enraptured of the past 40 years. Ironically, the longer the struggle between these two cleric factions impeding the true transfer of power, the more likelihood that the Shiite clergy class as a whole will be self-destructed; consequently, they will permanently disappear from the minds of the people and history of the Nation.
History has recorded the 1979 mass uprising as a major nationwide grassroots quest to bring about a democratic, just, and secular multi-party Republic. The 1979 unrest was, however, hijacked in the last few months by the Shiite clerics headed by the seemingly subdued and exiled Rouh-Allah Khomeini, who was mysteriously moved, fourteen years prior, from Iraq to the heart of Paris with full access to media for a short term and before an Air France airliner brought him back to Iran. During the final wave, the Shiite clerics, presumably with U.S. approval (whose priority rested in the completion of the green Islamic belt against the [atheist, communist] Soviet Union while removing the Shah), eliminated all progressive (liberal, democratic, reformed Muslim, socialist and leftist) forces. Such elimination of dissent was blithely accelerated by Khomeini through deliberate continuation of the exorbitantly costly war imposed on Iran by Iraq and supported by the US, Russia, Saudis and most Arab vassals, which inflicted on Iranians nearly a million loss of human life, millions more injured, and the loss of tens of billions of dollars.
Paradoxically, the progressive groups-students, labor, and the middle class technocrats- were more instrumental than the just emerging opportunist Islamists for deposing the Pahlavi dynasty. The 1980 Islamic Republic Constitution, hastily drafted by clergy hierarchy and based on a narrowly defined version of the Shiite Islamic doctrine, is in contradiction with the much favored and yearned for modern concepts of free thinking, equality, rationale, secularism, logic, facts, justice, freedom of expressions, transparency, accountability, and so forth. However, even this same narrowly defined Constitution, the pinnacle f which was rested on a sacrosanct grand ayatollah holding to absolute power grip ove the entire affairs f the country, public or private including couples’ bedrooms, , was increasingly violated by the IRI and has, in essence, become obsolete. As a result, the current forty year old government and its multi-layered para-government and economic tentacle power houses supported by a few million loyalists (khodi vs. nakhodi), mostly comprising of hundreds of thousands of clerics and their clans as well as millions of Revolutionary and Basiji Guards and government figureheads, have exerted the ferocious absolute power grip over the Nation, hoarding the national wealth and exploiting national and human resources for their own self-indulgence.
Assessment of the conduct and outcome of the IRI’s so-called binomial principalists and reformists is unanimously considered as failing by all, even those within the IRI system; this includes the ordinary or intellectual citizens of Iran, the Iranians exiled in diaspora, and independent thinkers worldwide. The IRI is at its most critical existential juncture, whereby unless it steps aside and reverts to an apolitical egalitarian clergy class through the 15th century, it will irrevocably be instrumental in forcing the remaining believers of Islam in Iran to look elsewhere for their spiritual and faithful dogmatic needs. Whereas there is ubiquitous dissent among the majority of the eighty million Iranians who have lost hope in the belief of a reformation from within the current IRI system or of their [Islamic] faith, most clerics, bureaucrats and autocrats within the system are not too far apart in acknowledging the many endemic incurable flaws within the broken system. Such clerics are in fact frightened f their very lives and existence and confess to a decline in the belief in Islam by the populace.
Thus many Iranians have moved increasingly away to only embracing an eclectic or ecumenical faith (no political religiosity) while others have adopted Humanism, Naturalism, Spiritualism, Mysticism, Agnosticism, Gnosticism, Zoroastrianism, Baha’ism, etc. for their faith guidance in life. As out of context as the literal Islamic jurisprudence—1500 years since its inception—is, the IRI has and continues reinterpreting it to its own self-serving ulterior motives and power-economic grabbing advantage, followed by retracting their own earlier interpretation of the same Islamic concept, or reversing their positions (Taghieh). The result is an endemically entrenched patronage system that may no longer be subject to reformed transformation from within, although this would have been desirable had it materialized on any one of the several occasions when grassroots have expressed their longing amid engineered elections, kabuki theatres in banana republics, and as expressed through demonstrations and dissent. However, in every instance the latter was quelled by involuntary exodus of so far five millions from the country, mass arrests, mass imprisonments f political prisoners of conscience, torture, assassinations, and/or summary executions in kangaroo courts.
After all, is it not ironic that 90% of the worldwide 1.7 billion Muslims consider the 10% Shiites to be blasphemous heretics who have deviated from “true” Islam? In fact, many independent philosophers have concluded that the Sunni Shafei-Salafi sect of Islam in Hijaz its birthplace, that led to the Wahhabism of the 18th century and its current Al-Qaida and ISIS metamorphism, is the true adherents to Islam. This is the same original Islam preached and practiced by Prophet Mohammad’s power of swords especially in his latter thirteen years of life and after his emigration to Medina (Yasreb.) The IRI’s Bill of Particulars of the past 40 years can be summarized as follows: tyranny, repression and denial of democracy and legal due process and [human, natural and civil] rights, weakening the faith/religious beliefs of the masses, privileged exclusivity for the few at the expense of denying equal inclusivity for the most, economic failure, corruption, inflation, and high unemployment/underemployment and so forth, all reinforced by socio-political impasse adopted from a foreign land of 1400 years ago.
Prospectively envisaging, Yes, indeed, the future of Iran is bright, so long as Iranians set their minor differences apart and instead, as a mature and integrated Nation well safeguard the Iran of tomorrow and beyond through securely governing country by a secular, democratic and all-inclusive government that derives its mandates from its constituents, the people. Consequently, such a government will be held responsible and accountable to the citizenry regarding its performance. The form of such a secular and democratic government (republic, monarchy, the hybrid or other, to be determined) and as founded on the well-defined separation of the mosque and state, religion and politics, as anchored on the three executive, legislative and judicial branches, is to be ultimately ratified by two-thirds votes of 50% plus one through a national referendum. Iran of tomorrow will be better off when each individual, including the ethnic, political, religious, or gender minority, has an equal voice and a contributing vote and equal socio-economic and political opportunity. Respecting the sovereignty of neighboring and reginal nations, Iran will expect reciprocity of the same in an ambiance most conducive to bi-/multifetal exchanges on matters of ceramic, cultural, educational, Research and development and technology transfers, and natural and environmental resources. Iran of tomorrow will not any longer need a charismatic ideologue figurehead, be it the king, the clergy or others, nor does it require an ideology, be it homegrown but worse imported. Iran of tomorrow will, as anchored on a national vision, devise processes and methods rising to an integrated system, overseen by checks and balances, whereby the legitimate and pragmatic aspirations of the people is fulfilled.
Historical Background and Urgent Need
for Modern Transformation of IRAN:
Iran has endured several stages of fundamental ruling shifts (usually one giant step forward and a few back) in governance well over the past century. The Mozzaffaredin Shah’s reluctant proclamation to concede to the adoption of the Constitutional Monarchy of 1906 which led t demise of the Qajar Dynasty and the coronation of Reza Khan Mirpanj, with British pre-approval, to serve as the first monarch Shah Pahlavi. The exiled expulsion of Reza Shah by the Allied forces who had accused him of having given his allegiance to German-Axis at the onset of WWII, led to the installment, again by British blessing, and since, by American approval, of his son, Mohammad Reza Shah, on the peacock throne. In 1953, after the elected Prime Minister Dr. Mohammad Mossadegh declared oil and fossil fuels as the national treasure of Iran and annulled D’Arcy concession to the Anglo-American Consortium, he was ousted and in-house arrest for life by the CIA/MIA6 (Operation Ajax), oddly with full cooperation from the Iranian leftist Marxist Tudeh Party, but most notably, with the decree by Shiite Ayatollahs headed by the self-declared grand Abolghasem Kashani. The Shah II, who had earlier fled to Italy, was brought back by the CIA which helped him institute the secret police SAVAK and its ever sophisticated persecution of political prisoners along with “white revolution,” a number of national socio-economic and not-so-political reforms.
The rapid socio-economic modernization of Iran, leading to a widening gap between the one “thousand royal families” and the emergence of a large middle class in major cities, while the population majority remained immensely poor, devoutly religious, and marginalized in rural or city outskirts, gave way to a state of national unrest. The rise of disenfranchised [student] political forces, and the alienation of the clergy frightened with modernity and education and losing their power grips and feeling the sudden decline of their influence of the past five hundred years, and above all, the American and British consortium’s loss of confidence in the Shah’s ability to continue serving their prime hegemonic interests, led to the 1979 revolution. Although initially conceived and carried by the progressive liberal and leftist groups, the revolution amid its final stage, was overrun and grabbed by the Islamic Ayatollahs who overthrew the Pahlavi Dynasty.
The new regime, self-declared as the Islamic Republic, in retrospect a contradiction in the misnomer abuse of the two terms, Islamic and republic, and only “legitimized” by a hastily devised referendum anchored on the single question of agreeing or not agreeing with the “Islamic Republic” as the new form of government, has over time become the exclusive clergy-run political force in the country. The regime has eliminated alternative dissent through its systematic inquisitions and repressions, imprisonment, torture and execution, and last but not least, mass exodus exiles of up to five million highly educated, affluent and skilled Iranians to the West: these expatriate Iranian technocrats, university professors and business executives with a current annual collective contribution toward economic development worth in the hundreds of billions of dollars, is recognized, even reluctantly the IRI establishment, as a most regretful collateral loss of the Iran throughout her long history.
The new theocratic government that has since its inception replaced meritocracy with mediocrity, while thriving on cronyism and nepotism, has given rise to a new class of seemingly loyalists empowered with siphoning off the treasury and national wealth. The loyalists on spotlight comprise of up to a few million clergies and revolutionaries and their families who are said to be well prepared to defend the Islamic Republic to the last drop of their blood, although in reality that only translates protecting their very own survival so as to preemptively circumvent the Iranian peoples’ intensifying wrath and abhorrence.
Many analysts have, however, opined that the majority of such so-called loyalists are only in it for their self-indulgent ulterior motives and not for ideological or religious reasons; it is believed that the IRI and its cronies, lackeys, and linchpins will have the same fate as many prior waves of absolute monarchies in that they will through the resolved wrath of the people, in a lightning moment, be thrown into history’s bin of oblivion. The IRI continues to dodge questions regarding its incompetence and failure in properly administering the country, its human and natural resources, and financial capitals by blithely deflecting the blame on outside entities, mainly the Americans and their regional lackeys: the Israeli and Saudi governments. The continued self-driven aims of these outside instigators cannot be overlooked, but the fact remains that it is the IRI and its Mafia style Caliphate that has made possible the wasteful exploitations of Iran’s human and natural resources, bringing the nation’s vast resources and potentials to the brink of total collapse. As recently published,
“As self-evident by the latest wave of antigovernment and anti-ideology demonstrations in Iran, the time seems riper than ever amid the past 150 years of their lingering struggle, for the 80 million people of Iran to peacefully transform their historic nation into a modern, democratic, and secular country where equality, freedom of expressions and press, and transparency and accountability, are instituted on the pillar principles of meritocracy, sovereignty, security, justice, and peace. What’s equally crucial, however, is to ensure the U.S. will irrevocably remain on the just side of history by upholding its commitment not to meddle in the internal affairs of Iran, let alone by avoiding to engage in a yet another overt or covert military intervention; otherwise, this will once again give the current failed IRI regime the bogus excuse to extend its lifeline through intensified repression of Iranians.”
In the words of Tehran University Professor Sadegh Ziba Kalam (the name literally translating to “eloquent truthful orator”!): “If a truly impendent referendum were possible today, the super majority of the people will inextricably vote against IRI or any manifestation of the Islamic Republic, whereby even a large number may vote for the return of the monarchy as a more favorable system of government!” What is even more striking is the fact that the zealot colors of Islam, albeit Shiite’ism, has but all faded away into oblivion among the super majority populace in that they have directly felt it failing them deeply in their bones. This has, in turn, led to reversion to Zoroastrianism, Christianity, humanity, spirituality, or, at the least, a reformed version of Islam [one that is not Shiite-based]. Most still believe [have faith] in God, but no specific religiosity attached to it!
Despite the majority of the people having lost their confidence in the current political system and the IRI to self-reform, many are still skeptical and so remain in a conundrum as to how to move the Nation forward to the next Constitution. Lack of a democratic ambiance and elimination of key political alternatives so as to foster an organic discourse and coalition building, complemented with constant fear of a civil war and possible disintegration of the country especially instigated by the US or Russia and their puppet governments in the region, has irrevocably impeded the transformation of Iran, longed for the past hundred years.
Sovereignty and territorial integrity is of permanent concerns, as Iran since its zenith of the nearly 3,000 years ago, has lost most its territories, primarily by external hegemonic inventions. The ultimate sovereignty of a country, meaning total isolation and complete self-sufficiency, which has never existed throughout history, is now increasingly close to being an impossibility. With ever sophisticated advent of communication technologies, transportations, exchange of goods and globalizations, even the super powers, let alone the smaller ones, are prone to interferences by other countries. As to the latter category as it pertains to Iran, the goal is to minimize such concessions to outsiders, which might only attainable if and when a democratic government as supported by the people, is governing the country. Even the citizenry of the strongest countries and their government are increasingly subservient to the ultimate supreme goals of the few humongous financial conglomerates, let alone the governments and people in smaller countries.
IRAN, aka Persia before WWII in the occident, has been inhabited by humans crossing from the horn of Africa for well over a hundred thousand years. Hence, recognized as the cradle of human civilization, the Iranian plateau, situated as the bridge of turquoise across the three continents of Asia, Africa, and Europe, has nurtured some of the most ancient human settlements, which includes over 10,000 years of archaeological evidence and several millennia of continuous forms of governments; Iran’s zenith remains the Achaemenid [Persian] Empire of nearly 3,000 years ago.
The Persian Empire of the Sassanid era encompassed nearly 40 countries of today, whereby 44% of the 7.77 billion world citizens can genetically trace a major portion of their pedigree to the historical Iranian region. Etymologically speaking, the Persian language and its myriad vernacular versions throughout history should increasingly be recognized as the precursors to European languages. In fact, there are currently 330 languages derived from the original Early Pahlavi and Avesta languages, in contrast to 130 languages derived from early Hindi. Thus, it is more appropriate to call the language family as the Irano-European language, or at the least as the Irano/Indo-European languages.
The original religion of the Iranians, presumably conceived as early as 10,000 years ago and later spread throughout Asia and Europe, was Sols Invictus, revering the sun as the ultimate symbol of light, enlightenment, energy, and information. Afterwards, Mithraism was in part absorbed into Zoroastrianism, as the first monotheistic religion to believe in Ahura Mazda according to the book Avesta, in which Mithra, the Sun-Goddess was given special stature. Attainment of Faravahar, which is the ultimate ascension through actualization of enlightenment, knowledge, and energy, will allow a person to become synonymous with God. This first monotheistic religion immensely infused into and influenced the codes and edicts of the subsequent Abrahamic religions of Judaism, Christianity and Islam, the latter of which is essentially the same as Judaism. Persian language and culture is the only one that designates femininity to both the sun and the moon!
Well over two millennia after its inception, Zoroastrianism must have adopted the caste system of societal hierarchy from Hinduism, later to its demise, when Zoroastrianism was declared as the official religion of the Sassanid Empire in the 2nd century CE. The ever increasing dissent by the majority overtaxed serfs, as well as the major Jewish and Christian/Armenian Iranian populace, paved the way for their mass exodus and easier than expected takeover of Islamic Arabs of the Arabian Peninsula called Saudi Arabia since 1932. The earlier invasion of Persia/Iran by the Macedonian Alexander merely yielded Seleucids which could not Hellenize Iran and only lasted for 70 years.
And later, even the military skirmishes of Genghis Khan into the greater Iranian territory, which then comprised of not only today’s Iran but also the entire of Central Asia, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Western India as well as the Caucasus region, could not impose the Altaic language on Iran, as was done in Asian Minor, but rather were acclimated into the Persian culture and language. In fact, the term “Aryan,” meaning noble horsemen superb at throwing arrows and javelins, attributed to the three original Iranian tribes of Persians, Medians, and Partians more closely denotes the distinct ethos, family of language, the literati of poetry and prose, the music and rituals of life, the values of honesty and respect for family and community, rather than a distinct ethnic identity, let alone the bogus racial superiority.
Epitomizing, the great all-inclusive Nation of Iran’s future is, indeed, bright! It is as bright as Iranians’ resilience, perseverance, and tolerance-demonstrated throughout history-to once again earn their duly deserving and dignified stature amongst the family of all nations on earth. Whereas the IRI motto of, “Neither West nor the East, only the Islamic Republic!”, must transform into “Either East or the West”, so long Iran’s primary pillars of sovereignty, security and fair economic development are respected. The first Deflation of Human Rights by Cyrus the Great, and as inscribed on the Cyrus Cylinder, should guide the Nation to ensure humanity, humility, compassion, empathy, equality, liberty, justice and the pursuit of happiness for all are the driving principles for the national unity transformation.
Toward the aim of a sovereign, secure and democratic IRAN, there emerge three distinct, yet complementary phases for Iran defined as follows:
- Pre-Transitionary Phase:
This has been the ongoing phase that must now be refined and accelerated further, strategically and tactically, so it paves the way for the next transitional phase. The specific aim here is to provide an ambience of healthy informational and educational discourse for the nation’s people to understand the impasses and challenges before them and to learn about the various socio-political and economic processes and potential government systems that could safeguard their national aspirations.The use of online and face-face public platforms to provide a nation-wide audience to patriots with expertise in such subjects will establish an infrastructure necessary for information, education and empowerment. One major tactical aim to be pursued by all is to slow work, strike, express concerns, and civil disobedience, propose solutions, and above all, avoid participation in any forums even remotely sponsored or endorsed by any faction of the current establishment, so as to reduce the legitimacy of the IRI and its religious or propaganda tentacles. The outcome of Phase I should include the composition and responsibilities of the transitionary government, the draft constitution(s) subject to review in Phase II, and the myriad draft methods of permanent government systems for the nation to consider for Phase II.
II. Transition Phase:
The IRI figureheads, privately recognizing its shortcomings and failures and as a result their very essence of existence when the curtains drops for their last acts, has since the post Iraq-Iran war, tossed around the bogus notion of reformists (eslah gara) vs. principalists (osul gara.) For the past eight presidential terms of 32 years, this rhetorical change of the guards has, in fact, brought large numbers of good-hearted citizens to cast their ballots in dire hope that the new incoming president could substantially bring about genuine socio-political and economic reforms they have yearned for; this, however, has yet to be truly accomplished even by small measures. It is, hence, highly unlikely that such a reform from within the system may ever materialize, since its conception is dependent on the demise of all current political establishments and socio-economic power-houses, nevertheless, such a last-ditch opportunity must still remain on the table, at least through the very early stage of the transitionary movement.
Far more crucially, however, is to devise a comprehensive plan of actions for a transition, in lieu of the current IRI, to materialize. A coalition of a transitionary custodial government, the (s)-election of whose is yet to be determined, will be responsible to oust the current IRI in order to take full and fast hold of the country, thereby ensuring the sovereignty and security of the nation and protection of the basic safety, sustenance, and expressive rights of all citizens against external and internal insurgencies. Included in the responsibilities of the interim government shall also be the protection of life, property and natural resources, provision of national amnesty, and setting-up the legal checks and balances for due processes in the event of charges filed against any entity. The establishment of a Constitutional Assembly, as elected by the people, and a Referendum within a year to ratify the Constitution, shall precede and oversee the national election for the inauguration of the first permanent government.
The pre-requisite for the ultimate political transformation of Iran, is predicated in a most effective transitional (interim) government that should be (s)-elected on the basis of the following criteria, in order of priority:
- The Government Transitional Council (GTC), to which interim government ministers will be appointed by consensus, must not comprise any individual that has served as a senior in IRI government or its current untrustworthy tentacle organizations.
- GTC must represent all regions of the nation and sectors of society, as (s)-elected by a mechanism yet to be determined.
- GTC should, to the maximum extent conceivable, coordinate the legal and peaceful tactical actions and process(s) by which the current regime is ousted, all the while avoiding collateral damage, summary trials and property confiscations without court warrants or verdicts.
- GTC must guarantee the safety and security of each individual citizen, their due process, and their property.
- GTC must develop and publicize the list of key top IRI figureheads and in due course arrest and apprehend them The key IRI officials of up to a few thousands, such as ministers and their deputies (such list of individuals must be prepared now), the Majlis and other council members, high-ranking military personnel at and above the ranks of colonel/Sardar, and the dozens of senior Islamic (Shiite) Clerics aka Ayatollahs, all the while affording them legal due process as per the international court of justice model.
- GTC must defend the security, integrity, and the overall sovereignty of Iran from both internal and external insurgencies.
- GTC must provide due process (habeas corpus) to all citizens irrespective of alleged charges.
- GTC members must fully disclose their wealth at the outset and immediately after the dissolution of the GTC when the referendum and installment of the permanent government has materialized.
- GTC members must sign a pledge to refrain from running for any government office or appointments within the first permanent government for two subsequent election cycles (eight years).
- Expatriates or dual nationals from diaspora, not representing any foreign government, should participate only as facilitators, consultants or advisors to the GTC, and not as full members. They should not be members of the GTC, but could run for office or be appointed for the first post-GTC government.
- GTC must meet regularly (no less than 3 times weekly) and communicate to the nation their actions on a daily basis and with as much transparency as possible.
- GTC must safeguard the uncensored follow of information and media, and equal opportunity for the emerging political parties to take advantage of such media.
- GTC will use all media communications and hold grassroots sessions to allow the Iranian people to self-educate and provide input as to the Constitution and the form of government they envisage for the nation, which the GTC will put to referendum, no later than one year from the ousting of the previous regime, to be ratified by two-thirds of voters (at least 51% of eligible voters should cast their ballots) for a seamless handover of the government and the country from GTC to the first elected government. All this must occur within 60 days from the referendum-based ratification of the constitution and the election of the next parliament and prime minister to propose cabinet, subject to approval by the former.
- Again, through a third party verification platform, an independent judiciary in Iran must ensure to proactively deter any possibilities by which the transitionary or the permanent system of government that follows, are hijacked by one single political group, be it solely homegrown, or imparted and influenced from outside Iran.
III. Post-transitionary Phase:
This Phase III, is to be completed no later than one year from the assumption of custodianship of the Nation by the GTC. The interim government is responsible for completion of the referendum on the Constitution, the form of the political process adopted for governance, and the election of the head of the government, and so forth. All should be decided by a minimum of two-thirds of the fifty plus one percent of eligible citizens casting their ballots.
This proposal, in effect an initial step, is not meant to be deemed complete by any measure; it only provides a preliminary draft for discourse among thinkers and people who care inside of and the ex-patriates outside of Iran for exchange of ideas and far better days ahead for Iran. It is written in the hope that it engenders an ambiance conducive to information propagation and education, consensus building, and a far more coherent plan of actions endorsed by, and acted on, by the people of Iran. This should ultimately lead to a national reconciliation and resolution that will, in turn, propel the nation forward and out of the current spiraling chaos. In order to fulfill the true will of the Nation, the need and merit for a transitionary process for an interim government, constitutional assembly, and the referendum to ratify the new constitution, based on a mechanism to be determined yet, is of paramount merit and significance.
The ultimate goal must remain the foundation of a secular, democratic political system, that is anchored on a new Constitution ratified by two-third majority of no less than 51% eligible votes casted, and which protects the rights of citizens from all walks of life in a sovereign, secure, and dignified Iran. As an integral component of the Nation’s resolution on the new form of government, the economic basis for governance must also be specified. Many scholars and thinkers on Iran believe a hybrid form of socialism and compassionate “free market” capitalism, similar to most European government systems especially in Scandinavia, should best suit the fulfillment of the needs of the various peoples of Iran.
Disclaimer. As this is merely an academic exercise, the authors do hereby acknowledge the need and merit for this draft document to be studied, refined, and rejected, amended, ultimately leading to a version of it adopted by Iranians inside the country. Further, the authors will categorically reject any bogus allegation, distortion or threatening or defaming the authors by the IRI or their advocates abroad, the Iranian exiled groups, or even the US and its satellite proxy states or think tanks. Accordingly, this draft document MUST not be misconstrued by any entity, as advocating for a specific Iranian political groups worldwide, including those in Iran, but in particular the exiled groups in the east or the west. The draft document simply delineates and highlights that a sovereign, secure, dignified, secular, democratic and prosperous Iran, will inextricably complement the long-term strategic interests of the people of the US in particular, but also of the same common interests, worldwide. Prospective translators, fluent in both English and Persian, are encouraged to submit the Persian equivalent of this document, for publication to online media broadly under a name as they so choose (you could use IranIsBright if you wish).
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