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EDITORIAL: Iran Regime’s Parliamentary Elections: Is Khamenei Gambling or Is the Situation out of Hands?

Editorial on Iran sham election

The Iranian regime will hold its eleventh parliamentary elections on February 21. Engulfed with crises and having an unstable domestic and international situation; the regime is holding the election while its focus is to avoid its downfall.  


In the previous elections, the regime used attractive words of “Hardliner” and “Reformist” that were created and applied for three decades.  

The so-called “reformist-hardliner” maneuver dates to 1989 when after the death of the regime’s founder Ruhollah Khomeini, the authorities used this maneuver, particularly in their international relations to prolong the regime’s life. The notion of having someone or a party within the regime who could return Iran into a civilized nation that would be an acceptable partner for the international community, particularly Western governments, via opening a dialogue with those governments, was very much endorsed on both sides of the Atlantic. It was in line with western governments’ short-term political interests.  

This approach led to the shameful appeasement policy and resulted in rejecting and neglecting the Iranian people’s right to resistance and their long-sought desire to achieve freedom, democracy, and prosperity. 

This policy reached its peak in 2015, when the Iran nuclear deal with world powers, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action or JCPOA was signed. This agreement unblocked billions of dollars for the mullahs’ regime which was used in its warmongering campaigns and terrorism in the Middle East via the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) Quds Force 

The Iranian people’s uprising in December 2017 and January 2018 demonstrated this fact that western governments had underestimated, in their relations with the regime, the role of the Iranian people and their righteous demands of having freedom and democracy. The people’s slogan of “Reformist, Hardliner, the game is over” during these protests put an end to the regime’s maneuvers.  These huge internal developments in Iran were followed by the U.S. withdrawal from the JCPOA and reversed the international relations against the regime.

The regime’s president, Hassan Rouhani, stated that the Iran protests in 2018 prompted U.S. President Donald Trump to withdraw from the JCPOA. In a nutshell, the Iranian people’s uprising changed the regional and international equation for the regime. The recent uprising by the Iraqi people and the elimination of Qassem Soleimani, head of the Quds Force, confirms the change of an era, rendering the regime’s imminent downfall.  

This situation leaves the regime’s supreme leader, Ali Khamenei, with two options: either continuing the “reformist, hardliner” game, which would result in the regime’s failure and defection among his oppressive forces, after people rejected this game; or total contraction and making his regime unipolar. Khamenei chose the second way.  

The second option required the massacre of over 1500 protesters during the Iran protests in November without any hesitation, as well as the elimination of the so-called “reformism.” 

The elimination of 55% of the election candidates of the “reformists” faction by the Guardian Council at the behest of the supreme leader assured Khamenei’s policy of having full control over the next parliament.

The empty gestures made by people like President Hassan Rouhani, such as his comments that the “elections have turned into selections,” were quickly taken back. Rouhani said in a press conference on Monday that his remarks were only warnings, clarifying this fact that he tries to preserve this regime and prolong its life by pleading with people to participate even at a minimum rate in the elections.  

In other words, the upcoming election farce is the ending point of the regime’s infighting between the rival factions, who agree with one another over domestic oppression, export of terrorism abroad and acquiring a nuclear weapon.  

The appeasement policy toward one of the most vicious regimes in the 21st century, which had fortified the regime’s ruling foundation, has failed, leaving the regime in the most unstable situation. 

Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, the President-elect of the Iranian resistance stressed that boycotting the elections is a “patriotic duty”. She emphasized that the Iranian people have cast their true vote in the November 2019 and January 2020 uprisings with chants of “Death to the principle of the velayat-e faqih – Death to Khamenei.”

 

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