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Iranian student leader "We no longer want dialogue with Hard-liners OR the reformers"
Iranian ^ | 7/31/03 | Kaveh Eshani

Posted on 07/31/2003 7:10:54 PM PDT by freedom44

Do you believe that the recent clashes signal a new political situation?

What we have realized is that the majority of students no longer want to maintain any dialogue with the regime. Previously, the students distinguished between the reformers in government, whom the students helped to elect to office and with whom they shared many concerns, and the hardliners, whom they had not elected and who were intent on maintaining their authoritarian grip on power.

But the events of the past months, and especially these past few weeks [as supra-parliamentary conservative bodies have blocked legislation enhancing Khatami's powers], have deeply changed this attitude. Students believe that some of the government reformers are sincere in their commitment to change, but are simply powerless to deliver on their promises. Their presence in the government only prolongs the life of a system that is incapable of reform.

Following the recent attacks on students by vigilantes and thugs, the students wrote a frankly worded letter to Khatami, challenging him either to stop these violations and punish the culprits, or to resign and avoid legitimizing this regime. This is an important new step for the student movement, because prior to this point the student movement acted within the system, as a part of the reform movement.

Following these recent events, the student movement has disassociated itself from the regime altogether. Some of us even do not want to stay within the existing framework of the Office for Consolidation of Unity (OCU) [an Islamic students' association, and one of the few autonomous political organizations allowed to operate in universities], because it is an official institution sanctioned by the regime.

I think these recent confrontations contained a serious warning from the people to the government of the Islamic Republic. It was really significant that, for the first time, ordinary people started really to get involved on the side of the students. Masses of ordinary people were present well into the early hours of the morning around the student residences of the University of Tehran. This presence of ordinary people, hanging around peacefully, and often with their families, lasted for a whole week.

Why did you give Khatami an ultimatum?

The student movement feels it has no longer any ties to the elected institutions and reformers. Students have trusted the reformers in successive elections and we have kept our part of the bargain. Our letter to Khatami was a farewell and a last ultimatum before cutting all ties. As for the other non-elected parts of the regime, we don't have anything to say to them.

What is the next step for the student movement?

It is not clear yet. Civil disobedience, strikes, and peaceful protests in various locations...all these measures are being considered. The student movement is not prone to violence, although anger and frustration may lead to isolated incidents of violent reaction by students. We realize that violence will destroy our hard-won gains of the past few years. That is why we are moving toward connecting our movement to the demands of other social groups, like workers and even families.

What is clear, though, is that we no longer feel there is any use in continuing a dialogue with the regime, even with the elected reformers. In realizing this, the student movement has shown itself one more time to be a step ahead of the rest of society.

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: iran; iranstudentmovement; southasia

1 posted on 07/31/2003 7:10:55 PM PDT by freedom44
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To: Doctor Stochastic; SJackson; knighthawk; McGavin999; Stultis; river rat; Live free or die; ...
on or off iran ping
2 posted on 07/31/2003 7:11:34 PM PDT by freedom44
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To: freedom44
Things are starting to snowball... one has to be patient. Rome didn't fall in a day and neither will the mullahs. But the end of their rule is not in doubt. Its just a question of when.
3 posted on 07/31/2003 7:13:40 PM PDT by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives On In My Heart Forever)
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To: goldstategop
4 posted on 07/31/2003 7:21:21 PM PDT by Sparta (A liberal is a conservative minus logic and morals.)
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To: freedom44
Thank you for posting this.
5 posted on 07/31/2003 7:23:33 PM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: freedom44

Thanks for the ping!

6 posted on 07/31/2003 7:25:32 PM PDT by dixiechick2000 ("The Prez is as focused as a doberman on a hambone!"---Dennis Miller)
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To: freedom44
"Their presence in the government only prolongs the life of a system that is incapable of reform."

It's the religion that is incapable of reform.

7 posted on 07/31/2003 7:49:17 PM PDT by Savage Beast (Vote Democrat! Vote for national--and personal--suicide! It's like being a suicide bomber!)
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To: Savage Beast
Don't know about that. Iran was like Europe under the Shah, still a 95+ percent Muslim country.
8 posted on 07/31/2003 7:51:07 PM PDT by freedom44
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To: freedom44

Thank you.

Tough though, knowing he was arrested.
9 posted on 07/31/2003 8:33:10 PM PDT by nuconvert
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To: freedom44
Freedom44 your post is excellent. The student movement is beginning to wake up and it is suggesting it is willing to get its ass kicked by the mullahs. The revolution is on its way but is facing an ideological foe far more ferocious than the corporate puppet their parents deposed. It is going to take more than teenage angst to face the helicopter gun ships that swarm over their protests. It is going to take leadership. My research suggests this leadership is not currently inside Iran.

Protesting students are marched out of press conferences with guns to their heads. The revolutionary guards are not putting up with what I would consider benign reformist much less revolutionaries. The IRI are willing to crush the sons and daughters of Iran ruthlessly because they do not answer to them.

The problems in Iran begin here with our State Department continuing secret meetings with the regime. Colin Powell’s comments should make any one familiar with the history of Iran puke. Our support for regime change needs to go beyond Radio Farda and VOA! It must go further than Pars TV but the State Department has been a thorn in the side of the only resistance movement willing to throw bullets at the mullahs. The NCR needs another look.

You’ve said in other commentary that the Mojahedin/NCR are a Marxist Islamist movement without support in Iran. I’d love to know how you’ve managed to poll the Iranian people to determine their support for the Mojahedin/NCR? My wife spent three years in jail for selling newspapers that mentioned the Mojahedin. Two reporters were recently jailed for printing Maryam Rajavi’s picture when she was released from French custody. I find it funny that so much effort is put into suggesting they’re irrelevant. The articles in every major publication the NYT, Fox news and CNN make me believe that they are anything but irrelevant.
10 posted on 07/31/2003 10:51:00 PM PDT by globaldemocracyadvocate (globaldemocracy advocate)
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To: globaldemocracyadvocate
With years of experience on Iranian politics and contact with many experts of Persian politics and history i can assure you that Mojahedin is not a legitimate opposition organization, by any means.

First off, Iranians have an extreme dislike for Islamists--- much less marxists islamists.

Second off, Mojahedin fought AGAINST Iranians during the Iran-Iraq war

Third, MKO has killed Americans in their attempts to install a marxist dictatorship in Iran.

They're labeled terrorist organization by USA>

If they want to work with opposition that's fine, but in democratic election they stand no chance.

If you find them legitimate that's fine support them in free elections in a future free Iran.

They have no chance of winning, but if they were to ever win in some local municipial elections then i'd support them.

Unfortunately they don't believe in Democracy--they're more a cult.
11 posted on 07/31/2003 11:55:32 PM PDT by freedom44
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To: freedom44
This debate is fun! I’m relatively new to the Iranian political scene and am not particularly diplomatic as you can tell. Despite this, I am not naïve nor uninformed. As a former US Naval Intelligence analyst and engineer my opinions can hang with yours and your Iranian experts.

As for supporting democratic elections as opposed to a Marxist dictatorship I would like to draw your attention away from the propaganda to this online document.

Constitution of the National Council of Resistance
Article 1
The National Council of Resistance has been formed to overthrow the Khomeini regime and to establish the Provisional Government.
Article 2
Until the formation of the National Legislative and Constituent Assembly, and, declaration of its readiness to assume its responsibilities, this Council will undertake temporary duties of the state's legislation and supervision of the administration of the country's affairs.
Article 3
Every personality or political current (whose membership of the Council is accepted), is entitled to one vote.
Article 4
The Council's decisions are made with the approval of two-thirds of the attending members provided that no objection is made by any of the member-organizations.
Article 5
Acceptance to the Council 6f Any new member requires the applicant's undertaking of the program of the Council and the Provisional Government, of the Provisional Government's urgent tasks, and of other ratification's by the Council. It must be accompanied by the written application for membership of the applicant and be presented to the President of the NCRI. This application will be set forth in the earliest sitting of the Council and provided its acceptance is approved (in accordance with article 4 la id above) the applicant will be considered as a "Member of the Council" thereafter.
Article 6
All members of the Council and the Provisional Government must comply with the decisions made by the Council.
Article 7
The responsibility to form the Provisional Government and to appoint the cabinet ministers is entrusted upon Mr. Massoud Rajavi who is the representative of the People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran. This government will act in accordance with the program and the immediate tasks assigned to the Provisional Government and in accordance with the Council's future ratifications.
Article 8
Within the framework of the Council's ratifications, the right to question and to interpolate the Provisional Government, or any of its members, is reserved for every member of the Council.
Article 9
Personality-members of the Council attend the Council's session in person. They may not send representatives or deputies instead.
Article 10
The expenses of the Council are met by means of membership fees and voluntary donations made by those who wish to see a free and independent Iran. With the agreement of each member, the President of the NCRI will determine the amount of financial contribution each member undertakes to provide. He will submit fiscal reports to the Council.

In the future sir I would hope that you would not insult my and other debater’s intelligence by dismissing any person or group with a label like “CULT”. Just because the media and your Iranian experts do it, accusations like this aren’t any less stupid.

Attack the Mojahedin and NCR on what they say and what they do!
Attack them with information that is not provided by the IRI!
Reference the documents!

I’m fighting the Islamic Republic with words because their constitution is a piece of garbage. I’m fighting because the students in Iran need to know that the world hasn’t fallen asleep while they fight and die for democracy.

Between you, me and the policy makers here in the US, attack the Mojahedin for what they say and do, not for the simplistic name-calling and blame shifting Iranian politics is famous for.

Keep in mind when you talk to your experts that the best and brightest of the Iranian political struggle for democracy are already dead. The shah executed them, and those that weren’t were executed by the IRI. What we have left are a mixed bag of survivalists and reformists.

Now we can start our debate over.

Why does the IRI want to trade MEK members for al Qaeda members?

What do you think about the NCR’s constitution?

What evidence do you have that they are a cult?
12 posted on 08/01/2003 7:34:32 AM PDT by globaldemocracyadvocate (globaldemocracy advocate)
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