Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Efforts Have Begun to Fail Opposition

Shervin Omidvar, Rooz Online:
Mohseni Ejhei, the intelligence minister of the Islamic Republic of Iran proclaimed once again through IRNA government news agency that the recent unrest in Iran was directed from outside the country and announced that “Efforts had begun to fail them.”

In his remarks, he again asserted that the enemies of the regime had tried to stop the establishment of the new government since the victory of the revolution in 1979 for which they had used different methods. “Presently too they are pursuing this aggressive goal through a gradual overthrow” of the regime, he said. Mostafa Pour-Mohammadi too had used the term in reference to what he called “enemies” of the regime. And quoting an informed intelligence source, the hardline conservative newspaper Jomhuri-e Eslami too had used this term in reference to the recently arrested scholar Ramin Jahanbegloo, stating, “Jahanbegloo is a key individual in the efforts to gradually overthrow the regime.” READ MORE

In his remarks, the minister of intelligence added the opposition groups, in addition to the US and Britain in having a hand in the recent unrest in Iran. Some of the groups involved in the recent unrest, are from outside the country against whom we have begun measures to fail them,” he said. Analysts ask whether his words mean measures against political activists living abroad.

A Repeat of History?

The reasons for this possibility and question lie in the actions undertaken by the friends of Mohseni Ejhei and the killings of some regime opposition figures in the past. A decade ago the murders of a number of opposition figures in Germany, France and other countries have been directly attributed to the ministry of intelligence by human rights organizations, witnesses and judicial proceedings. The seriousness of those cases were such that during the Majlis (Iran’s Parliament) confirmation hearings for Ejhei and Pour-Mohammadi, even members of the Majlis had to make references to them. For example Emad Afrough, an MP from the right said in those hearings,If I raise organizational criticism to the appointment of Mr. Pour-Mohammadi, it is because of historic concerns and to avoid the repetition of those events. I am in fact giving a warning that by choosing someone who has demonstrated to possess a security and social mind-set we would once again be witness to past events.”

These remarks by Ejhei have once again raised the concerns of intellectuals and political activists inside and outside the country.