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Former Congressman Patrick Kennedy Urges Continued Support for Iranian Resistance

Iran: The Untold Story Podcast with former Congressman Patrick Kennedy

Former Congressman Patrick Kennedy, renowned mental health advocate and co-founder of the non-profit One Mind, recently shared his long-standing support for the Iranian Resistance movement, highlighting his advocacy efforts for political prisoners, particularly members of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK).

Reflecting on his tenure in Congress from 1995 to 2011, Kennedy recounted how he leveraged his position to champion the cause of political prisoners worldwide. “The privilege of being in Congress allowed me to highlight the stories of those jailed for their political beliefs. I often signed amnesty letters on behalf of MEK members incarcerated in Iran,” he said, emphasizing the stark contrast between such oppressive regimes and the freedoms enjoyed in the United States.

Kennedy traced the oppressive trajectory of Iran’s leadership from the Shah to the theocratic regime. Initially, the mullahs promised greater freedom, only to impose even more severe restrictions. “Theocratic fascism has wreaked havoc on the people of Iran and turned the country into a pariah state as the largest state sponsor of terrorism,” he noted.

Post-Congress, the former Congressman advocated for the safety of MEK members in Camp Ashraf, Iraq. These individuals faced threats from Iranian-backed militias and the Iranian Guard. “Despite our efforts to secure their safe passage, many were tragically killed due to the Iranian influence over the Iraqi government,” Kennedy lamented.

Mr. Kennedy praised the Iranian Resistance, particularly the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) and its President-elect Maryam Rajavi, for their relentless efforts to expose the regime’s atrocities. “Thanks to the resistance, the world knows about the 1988 massacres and other human rights abuses. This awareness enables us to maintain pressure on Iran,” he stated.

Drawing inspiration from historical figures, Mr. Kennedy said, “Massoud Rajavi was obviously an inspirational leader for the democratic movement in Iran. And my father was always attracted to people who were fighting really against the odds and frankly, at the risk of their own lives. He really admired that. You can have people just be quiet and turn the other way because frankly it’s easier and they don’t jeopardize their lives or those immediately around them. But he really admired people like Nelson Mandela, Massoud Rajavi and many others who were standing up for a newer world where people did not have to live under such oppression and under such violence.”

Kennedy’s personal commitment to the cause extends to his family. He shared a poignant memory of bringing his children to a rally in Paris, where Maryam Rajavi remarked on the future generation’s role in the struggle for freedom. “It’s crucial to show my children the value of courage and legacy,” Kennedy said, underscoring the impact of strong female leadership exemplified by Rajavi on his daughters.

Addressing the potential for a democratic Iran, Kennedy expressed confidence in the country’s future post-regime. He emphasized the deep-rooted culture of education and civilization in Persia, predicting a return to global leadership once theocratic rule is dismantled. “The people of Iran have a history of literacy and civilization that will reassert itself,” he predicted.

Kennedy dismissed the notion that sanctions hurt the Iranian people more than the regime, drawing parallels to the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa. “The people are already suffering. They want change, not trickle-down aid. We must stand with them,” he asserted.

In conclusion, Kennedy urged continued international support for the NCRI and the broader Iranian resistance movement. “We must be proactive and prepared for the moment when change occurs. The NCRI’s organization ensures a smooth transition to democracy,” he affirmed.