Friday, June 26, 2009

A Letter for Hugo Chavez

Mr. Hugo Chavez
President Republic of Venezuela

Excellency, I hope you remember me . I witnessed how you considered President Khatami as your friend when you visited Iran during his term, I was a colleague of your Minister of Environment and I chaired the High Level Roundtable in the Johannesburg Summit on Sustainable Development of which you were a member.

We, in Iran, are well informed of your resistance against imperialism in Latin America, your efforts to serve your impoverished people, your successful endeavor to remove limitations from election terms for the Presidency and your recent reconciliation and exchange of Ambassadors with Washington.

I speak with you as an Iranian citizen and representative of the people of Tehran. I have learned through an AFP report that you have recently said that the " imperial hand" of the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency – and of Europe – was behind post-election clashes .On Wednesday, on the margins of a gathering of Latin American leftist leaders you have also said that "Ahmadinejad won the elections legally, we are absolutely sure we know quite a lot about Iranian politics".

I wish to inform you that unfortunately, you know little about Iranian politics or international politics, for that matter. What considerations have led you to take such positions are not known for me and history will judge you on the basis of these words. True politicians never act hastily. Your hasty remarks are considered as interference in our internal affairs, since the Guardian Council which is legally responsible for the approval of the elections has not yet given its final verdict. Therefore, your remarks indicate that you have approved these elections, which have been seriously contested by all three rivals of Mr. Ahmadinejad, before the completion of legal processes. Mr. Chavez, all three rivals of Mr. Ahmadinejad are loyal to the Islamic Revolution as the Supreme Leader mentioned before, they have more anti- imperialist credentials than you or your dear friend. Attributing their objection against the election results,and the objections of Mir Hossein Mousavi against the arrest and detainment of revolutionary figures and against illegal attacks on citizens, and the peaceful demonstrations of millions, to foreign powers is a clear slander and insult to our nation.
The Iranian movement for reform and change is one rooted in our Islamic mores( which I doubt you know much about) and in the sublime values of the Islamic Revolution. This movement has nothing to do with foreign powers but has suffered due to the pressures which the West and interference of Eastern powers in our affairs.

Human dignity and freedom is highly regarded and cherished in our culture. Mr. Chavez, I wish to remind you of two important slogans of our Revolution < Independence Freedom Islamic Republic and Not East Nor West, Islamic Republic.>I wish you would reconsider your positions and correct your wording. This might improve your image before the Iranian nation.
Since most leaders of the Reform movement were student leaders of the Second Revolution in 1979, I will send you a copy of my memoirs Takeover in Tehran so that you may learn more about the values that we cherish and the dignity that we pursue.
Excellency , please accept my highest considerations.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

The Authentic Values of the Revolution

The Islamic Revolution was based on the Iranian nation's resolve to abolish dictatorship and tyranny and to establish justice and revive the dignity of human beings. It was a modern attempt to bring Islam back into the center stage of politics, it was a revival of democracy in a country torn apart by decades of colonial and imperial intervention. On the 30th anniversary of the Revolution we are faced with very difficult challenges which could undermine the very basic values of this nation. The threat of falling off course and losing the spirit of the Revolution looms over us.
In those early days the Founder of the Islamic Republic, Imam Khomeini was faced with contradictory views on how to realize the political philosophy that Islam presented. He was faced with groups who believed that an Islamic state, based on only the rule of the Jurisprudence could be legitimate and that a state in the form of the Khalafat would suffice. Imam however believed that in modern times the role of the people in determining their future in the form of democratic systems is necessary to legitimize the establishment and to keep the people in the scene as active players. His idea of the dual powers of the Velayte Faghih and the institutions of democracy were integrated into the constitution of the Republic and implemented with a certain degree of accuracy. Today, we face serious challenges from those who do not believe in the democratic nature of Islamic politics and are on a serious campaign to weaken the democratic aspects.
Mr. Mousavi is a symbol of the movement that calls for the revival of the original and authentic teachings of Islam and Imam and the values of the Revolution. It is a great asset that his discourse has appealed to the young generation. The government however is not ready to relinquish power after they faced the reality of their electoral loss and they have resorted to illegal and unethical scenarios, smearing campaigns, pressures and ways to impose their second term upon the country. I hope that political leaders and elite will find a reasonable way out of this quagmire. Mousavi and the people are firm in their determination to keep democracy alive in the Islamic Republic of Iran. It should be emphasized that foreign intervention and remarks have never been helpful in this campaign. This is a benign development , but they are after labeling it as a foreign conspiracy and giving it a malignant appearance for the ordinary people. Mousavi calls for peacful and legal resistance and opposition to the election results.

Friday, June 19, 2009

The Aftermath

I have been very engaged in the past weeks and therefore I had no chance to update my blog. Also at certain times I did not know what to say considering the quick turn of events in Iran. Mr. Mousavi has rejected the official election results and large populations amounting to millions have marched in Tehran. The reality is that this movement is totally rooted in national issues and Mr. Mousavi has stood as a candidate within the Islamic Republic and people have supported his reform movement with hopes for change. The important factor today is to emphasize upon the internal roots of this campaign. Foreign remarks and support could be considered as interference and are therefore not welcomed in this sensitive time. Iran has a long history of colonialism and whenever there has been a liberation movement, foreign intervention has been detrimental.
Millions have protested repeatedly in the streets, their calls of Allah o Akbar at night are heard throughout the cities, university scholars, artists, business sectors and most of the elite in Iran have officially announced their support for Mousavi. Eventhough the Supreme Leader has spoken today asking people not to march and candidates to follow their requests in legal channels, I do not believe things will be resolved readily. I hope security forces and police show restraint and that they prevent the para military groups and hooligans from creating a sense of insecurity in cities.
Now more than ever before, the values of the Islamic Revolution are tied to values of democracy and respect for the choice of the majority.