The Mullahs in Tehran, increasingly aware of mounting international isolation and a devastated economy have now come face-to-face with reality. They were dealt another major blow when the US State Department officially removed Iran's largest opposition organisation, the People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK), from the US Foreign Terrorist List. It was a devastating defeat for the corrupt and oppressive Iranian regime. That decision came after a lengthy legal battle, the first of its kind in US history, with the judiciary effectively ordering the de-listing after finding that the PMOI's due process rights had been violated. Tehran's knee-jerk reaction was a heavier dose of the prescription they have been using for the past three decades. As Tehran grows desperate, it has bolstered its campaign of demonisation and slander against the PMOI.
The regime will go to any lengths to demonise the PMOI precisely because it is native Iranians under the inspired leadership of Mrs Maryam Rajavi who are offering a viable democratic alternative. It was this organisation that first revealed the regime's nuclear program in 2002, (has followed up with further damning revelations), and has, at considerable cost in lives and personal freedom, challenged the regime for the last 30 years. The regime's greatest fear is that the Iranian Resistance will be recognized as an alternative to the Islamic Republic and will attempt to marginalise and eliminate it.
The regime has continually used the labels 'terrorist' and 'cult' in order to dehumanise the members of the PMOI and to neutralise its impact. Such accusations have been repeated by the regime's sympathisers and advocates and those who have interest in maintaining the status quo - all in the foolish belief that Ahmadinejad & co may yet be amenable to reason.
One quite sinister campaign has been pursued by the National Iranian American Council (NIAC), an organisation that many now view as the de facto lobby of the Iranian regime in the United States. It was the NIAC that actively and openly opposed the inclusion of Iran's oppressive Revolutionary Guards in the US terrorist list. The IRGC ruthlessly suppresses not only the ambition of ordinary Iranian people in their struggle for freedom and justice, but has also played a key role in supporting Assad's dictatorial regime in Syria. Trita Parsi, the President of NIAC claimed the de-listing of the PMOI was a "gift" for Ali Khamenei - the mullahs' supreme leader - clearly maintaining its solidarity with Tehran.
Clear evidence is available within diplomatic cables released by Wikileaks. One striking example from a leaked UK cable refers to the subject of the PMOI's imminent de-listing by a UK court having been raised with Iran's lead negotiator on the nuclear issue, Saeed Jailili. The cable describes the manner in which the British government sought to assure Jailili that they had been looking to appeal the ruling in every way possible. The cable confirms Tehran's uncompromising stance on the matter; "Iran-specific policy concern...is that any Iranian perception of Western support for PMOI could endanger resolution of the nuclear issue."
One of the main demonising sources of the PMOI is the RAND Corporation. One report was prepared in 2009 by James Dobbins, who has a long history of involvement with NIAC and Trita Parsi. Dobbins, far from being a disinterested third party, was a member of the Campaign for a New Policy on Iran, an organization linked to NIAC, and campaigning for the removal of sanctions on Tehran.
One fact that the mullahs' and apologists consistently ignore is that the PMOI has won victories in every court it has petitioned (18 in all), including those decisions in EU and UK courts. Those decisions are all a matter of public record, and were based solely on evidence. As the walls begin to close in around a regime known for its outlandish lies and propaganda, it will continue to lash out in a desperate attempt to stave off the inevitable. Such reactions will not be of any surprise.
But the people of Iran, who took to the streets again last week, know who their enemy is. Despite the mullahs' desperate attempts, the inevitable fall of their cruel regime will come at hands of the Iranian people and through their resistance. The Middle-East, indeed the world, will be a better and safer place.
The question is where do the world's leaders want to be; can they properly read the runes and be ready to seize the opportunity when it comes?