In a long article, using the above picture, Ali Khamenei says: [IRGC] is a force, which considers protecting the people and eliminating the problems that are before them. [It seeks] to satisfy the military needs of the country, [and will not] forget about its activities in social areas at the same time. [IRGC is] a role model for the people’s forces in Lebanon, Iraq and Syria […]. IRGC has correctly set itself the task of protecting the Revolution and its achievements and confronting every possible threat. To this end, the mission and sphere of its activities are boundless.
Hassan Rouhani stated: Domestic political freedom is very important to us, and we, as the oldest democracy in the Middle East, are proud of our democracy. The farce of Iran’s separation of powers turns the political power from fraud to tragedy.
Read the previous part: Buffoonery and Ribaldry in Iranian Politics
Is the judiciary independent?
Democracy needs independent judiciary. Four dirty words forming a nonsensical concept in Iran.
The Iranian judiciary obeys one rule against all odds: enforcing the political Islam’s ideology according to the interpretation and opinion of the Islamist Shiites in power. Thus, bending the court rulings in the service of theocracy. A nightmare of justice carried out by religious hangmen based on violence and personal interests.
In this, dispensing justice is a farce. Most felons, real ones, go through a judicial process that is disproportionately worse than what they have allegedly done.
Some felons receive light sentences since their crime is in line with the phallocentric Islamist ideas, honour killing being one such case.
Unfortunately the outcome of the largest number of cases is either pain felt under torture, long prison sentence or hanging.
The incarcerated population includes a large number of: protesters, scientists, environmentalists, researchers, daring but not reckless journalists, Instagram users, Kurds, Baluchis, Arabs, Baha’is, converted Christians, writers, filmmakers, musicians, dervishes, workers, bad-hijab women, teachers, sportspersons, dual-nationals … etc.
Before long, their lawyers and the members of their families have joined them, wrongly accused of phonier charges.
Khamenei says: Asserting the public’s rights primarily falls on courts of law. Of course, this has been completely observed in the recent term. As for the issue of asserting the public’s rights, well, it is not easy to define what these rights are. HRW has a more serious perspective: Iranian judicial authorities have dramatically increased the cost of peaceful dissent, sentencing dozens of human rights defenders and activists to decades-long prison sentences. They also brutally repressed the nationwide protests in November 2019, using excessive and unlawful force and mass arbitrary arrests.
Further on Ali Khamenei on corruption says: Financial and economic corruption […] is a grave plight and dangerous virus, just like the coronavirus. However, in the case of the coronavirus, if we use soap to wash our hands, the issue is resolved, but in the latter, the issue is not resolved by using soap on our hands. There is no solution other than cutting off the hands of the corrupt!
Guess what? If the hands of the corrupts were to be cut off…. his clique and the government would go hand-less.
How come stoning, flogging and Lex Talionis have been applied since 1979?
How come the under-aged have been hanged?
How come that the peaceful expression of one’s opinion leads to phoney condemnation of spying for enemies, blasphemy and betrayal?
How come innocents were condemned in monkey Revolutionary Tribunals, after a forced confession was broadcast?
How come so many Iranians have taken refuge abroad?
What is the price of a prisoner as a bargain-chip? We can affirm, without a shadow of a doubt, that our clerics are kidnappers, and the Iranian minister of foreign affairs is the villains’ broker, securing the payment of the ransom.
If the Iranians had trembled with indignation at every injustice carried out by the Islamic judicial power, then they could pretend to be a fair nation and the memory of the Islamic Republic-cum-Velayat-e Faqih would have been buried decades ago.
Justice, or even the law, cannot and will not be served until those who are unaffected are as outraged as those who are.
When fear strikes, speech is the first to retreat. Fear has made us all cowards, living double-lives, saying one thing and thinking the opposite.
Iran: A Militaristic Theocracy
In the Islamic Republic of Iran, building municipal libraries worthy of the name is inappropriate, paying decent wages to workers is a waste of good money. Everything else that makes a country comfortable to live in is promised but never achieved.
Compassion, cooperation and acceptance in the mouth of the authorities are dirty words.
But, in line with Islamic inspirations, investing in Internet Halal and spying on the citizens are virtuous moves.
Is there any estimate of the monies spent on Nuclear nightmare? Or in weaponising the pilgrims of holy shrines? How big are the holes in the budget of the state that allows Islamic headquarters, with deep pockets, to grow outside governmental bodies, and have more political influence than that a normal sovereign state would tolerate?
In Iranian politics, paying poor Afghan migrants to fight for the IRGC alongside Bashar al-Assad, and spending lavishly in supplying weaponry for proxies to meddle in the Middle East, are noble causes. Whenever and wherever the Iranian state has proposed its allegedly good-offices or provided advisors, things have gone from bad to worse.
The Iranian theocracy cannot stay in power unless it is faithfully backed by the IRGC, its intelligence services to spy on citizens, and its violent crackdowns on the protesters. The anti-US, anti-Israel rhetoric of a bunch of frail and decrepit ayatollahs would go unnoticed if it was not echoed by the military, groomed and pampered within the Velayat-e Faqih.
Over the years, the graded IRGC personnel have asked for more than their wages. They have wished to make big money, be all-important, and run the lives of the royal courtesans of the 1970s.
The Islamists yield to their wishes, sharing with them the wealth of the country and the benefices from spoliation, and helping them in refined financial scams. Basically, the entire economy, lock, stock, and barrel, has been handed over to the IRGC, an unelected and unaccountable military body.
Today, the IRGC commanders have their say and put their fingers in every pie, from foreign affairs to domestic policies. They devise a scheme to moderate the traffic in Tehran, have their process to fight the pandemic, and even the most violent methods to enforce the wearing the hijab.
Next spring, no one will be surprised when the IRGC will present its candidate for the presidency with the blessing of the Supreme Leader.
As an Iranian we have seen this happening before our eyes over the years. But we choose to not see it, thus avoiding reflecting on the consequences.
People’s improvidence is our national affliction. After forty years, the same lies and ribaldries, over and over, do not affect us. A pity.
In forty years, millions of Iranians have gone to live abroad, either in search of a better life away from the country’s economic misery, or because they have run away from the regime’s violence. They make a living in all walks of life, many settling as middle-class, with liberal professions, academic posts … you name it.
Hundreds of thousands from the Iranian diasporas around the world have visited their families in Iran, unconcerned tourists in their own country. For them Iran has been a place to enjoy a couple of weeks of holiday.
They have obstinately refused to question their own country’s destiny and the political Islam that has ruined and forced the country into the perilous path of dictatorship.
All are apolitical, cultivating intellectual laziness that prevents them from asking questions and groping for answers. They are in fear of what people in their circles might say.
It needs courage to reflect and share one’s thoughts on one question: where is the line between the spirituality of religious sacred symbols to respect and the materialist political Islam that exploits them to strengthen its power?
We are all accomplices to the theocracy violence, by our silence, self-censorship leading to apathy and the lack of curiosity of the world surrounding us.
Can we remotely caress the idea of a democracy?
In the spring of 1979, the ghoulish rumbling noise of the Islamic Revolution was terrifying to many who heard it.
After four decades of being brainwashed by the brazen and violent logorrhoea of the ayatollahs, the ghoulish noise is only a background murmur that has conditioned our lives. We do not bother to notice it.
Only a national awakening and a shared vision will save us. One day, we Iranians should prove ourselves the leading actors of our history, and not the bystanders watching dictators come and go: cheering and booing when asked by cheerleaders.
For now, we have left the stage to a clique of Islamists and watched their crooked fingers stealing from the rightful owners. With dissolution and perversity, they have trampled on humanity, spirituality and the cultural values we must keep vibrant for the generations to come.
The Islamic Republic of Iran cannot and will not evolve. Those who dreamed of the changes within the regime and baselessly granted it the capacity to adapt to the evolution of the society, are now dead or had to change their mind in exile.
As long as we are reluctant to held serene debates, political or otherwise, among ourselves, we back the regime.
As long as we look at the outcome of the US elections or what the Europeans, as individual countries or the EU, can do for us, we stay with the ayatollahs.
Can we stop the fools that rule us, the Shiite geriatrics, from teaming up with Chinese and Russian autocrats? To preserve their power, they would chain our nation in bonds much stronger than those of the Americans in the 1960-70s.
Ever since the Islamic Revolution was aimed to gain our independence from the yoke of the USA, the Great Satan, millions of Iranians have gone to live there.
I wonder how many Iranian refugees would build their lives in China or Russia, benefiting from the same conditions enjoyed in the USA or Europe.
Years and years living from handouts, subsidies and the crumbs of what the dictatorships have condescended to throw to the population have conditioned us to expect our rights to be given to us. There is no dignity and decency for a nation begging for assistance from the tyrants.
The national grandeur is ours when we master our rulers, taking from them the power of deciding for us.
A democracy can come to us if we want it and only if we toil for it together. Non one is going to build it for us: not a US administration or any call to the UN.
We must see that totalitarianism has turned every one of us into the kind of person we would not consider a friend.
Lies, fear and hypocrisy are part of us, a kind of protective Pavlovian reaction to the external world. Recklessness in paying attention to them eats us from inside.
The road to a successful democracy with a proud record on human rights is for now barred to us, unless we use our imagination, curiosity, and most significantly, we find the courage to walk in the path of due regard for all.
We have the human capital – educated and smart – to stand up to the ayatollahs, if only they could find the spine for it.
But, we should not give up hope. We must gain our independence from the claws of political Islam. That would not take away the spirituality or the wisdom. It would simply preserve us all from the fraudulence of abusing the sacred in the name of Allah by the clerics.
People’s vigilance and reliance are our only path to future national prosperity. What kind of society do we want: one based on decency and democracy, or, as today, one based on viciousness and wolfish force?