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NBC Article “Giuliani's work for Iranian group…” Is Fake News

Over Fifteen thousand MEK supporters rally in Berlin is support of the Iranian resistance and in solidarity with the uprisings in Iran-July 6, 2019
Over Fifteen thousand MEK supporters rally in Berlin is support of the Iranian resistance and in solidarity with the uprisings in Iran-July 6, 2019

Allegations against the Mujahedin-e Khalq (PMOI/MEK) and the disparaging of prominent former senior U.S. officials were briefly addressed in a rebuttal by Ali Safavi, an official of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), to a hit piece published on the website of the NBCNews.  

The diatribe by the NBC had gone out of its way in attacking the Iranian democratic opposition, something that reeked of kowtowing to the mullahs ruling Iran rather than objective journalism. Within hours of its appearance on NBC’s website, the article was disseminated in full in a series of official Iranian online outlets, most of them with established ties to the mullahs’ infamous Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS).

Yesterday, the Albanian Police chief revealed lengthy details of how the mullahs’ Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS) elements in close collaboration by the IRGC’s Quds force had tried to undertake a large-scale terrorist operation against the MEK members in Albania. They had been helped by MOIS agents presenting themselves as “former MEK members”. These are the kind of witnesses NBCNews.com cites in its article.  

In the meantime, NBCNews.com has failed to publish Mr. Safavi’s rebuttal, which clearly exposes the depth of the smear campaign waged by the mullahs against their main opposition movement and propagated by their lobbyists.

I quote a few of those points here, especially as it is unique in revealing the effort by a former State Department official to portray the mullahs’ regime as a viable and inevitable foreign interlocutor in dealing with the crises in the Middle East. 

As the world has come to know the regime in Iran as a pariah state, advocates of appeasement have tried to demonize its democratic alternative to insinuate that preserving the status quo is the only and most effective approach in dealing with Tehran. 

In his rebuttal, Mr. Safavi wrote:

  • This is not the first time that NBC has quoted Daniel Benjamin, a former State Department official and the MEK’s chief antagonist in its legal challenge to the terrorist designation seven years ago. After French, German and Belgian law enforcement agencies foiled a terror plot by the Iranian regime’s terrorists, including a senior diplomat, to bomb the Iranian Resistance’s gathering in Paris on June 2018, while parroting the regime Foreign Minister Javad Zarif, NBC reported that this may have been a false flag operation and that the regime may not have been involved. It also quoted Benjamin as saying, “There are no simple stories in this patch." Ignoring that a senior so-called diplomat of the regime had been arrested in this terrorist operation, Benjamin tried to shift the blame from the entirety of the regime by suggesting that the plot could have been a “rogue operation.” A few weeks later, the French government and subsequently the European Union declared that the highest levels of the Iranian Intelligence Ministry had been involved in the plot and placed the Ministry’s Internal Security Directorate and a senior official on their terrorist lists for their role. However, NBC never corrected its story nor did Benjamin retract his comments. This leaves no doubt regarding NBC’s biased coverage on this topic.

 

  • On October 17, the State Department chronicled the Iranian regime's malign activities during nuclear negotiations and even after the signing of the nuclear agreement. The release states: "During the period of JCPOA negotiations, Iran continued to provide arms, financing, training, and the facilitation of Shia fighters to the Assad regime” in Syria. It goes on to say: "On September 1, 2013, an attack by Iranian proxies Kata’ib Hezbollah (KH) and Asa’ib Ahl al-Haq (AAH) on Camp Ashraf in Iraq, led to the deaths of 50 members of the Mujahedeen-e Khalq, or MEK.  Press reports claim members of the QF not only planned the attack but also played a direct combat role in it. The QF, along with KH and AAH members, also abducted seven MEK members and smuggled them back to Iran, according to the press.  The missing seven members haven’t been seen or heard from since the attack."

 

  • The dozens of honorable and bipartisan American figures who support the MEK and the Iranian Resistance represent the conscience of humanity against the evils of the theocratic rulers of Iran. Targeting these personalities is part of the clerical regime’s vilification campaign against the MEK, which is sadly echoed by supporters of appeasement vis-a-vis the regime like Daniel Benjamin. The latter’s hostility towards the MEK is matched by that of the religious tyrants in Iran - no doubt due to the resounding defeat he suffered when trying to prevent the removal of the unjust terrorist designation against the MEK. When he worked as the State Department’s Counterterrorism official, he inexplicably refused to implement the July 2010 orders of America’s second-highest court, the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. The writ of mandamus on June 1, 2012, compelled the Secretary of State to delist the MEK in four months. Having no other options, the Secretary delisted the MEK on September 28, 2012, in the final days of the Court-mandated period.

 

  • The pathetic claims that the MEK has no popular base in Iran are too outlandish to deserve a response. It is unclear which scientific poll the author of the article and Benjamin rely on to make such a claim with respect to a country that is the record holder of per capita executions in the world. The MEK is a movement that has been fighting against two dictatorships for 54 years. More than 100,000 of its members and sympathizers have been executed. Such a movement could not have survived, much less continuously expand, for more than five decades without an extensive popular base. Why would an organization that lacks social support become the clerical regime’s main existential problem? The reason the unqualified minds of the likes of Benjamin describe the MEK’s financial sources as a “big question” and “mysterious” is that they intentionally reject the support of the people of Iran for the MEK, which supplies their funding.

 

  • The Marxist-Islamic label against the MEK is an accusation concocted by the Shah and later borrowed by the mullahs in a bid to stop the growing popularity of the MEK. The same goes for the false accusations of a “bloody past” and murder of American citizens in the 1970s, which have all been tested and failed in dozens of court sessions in the US, Europe, and the UK. The MEK’s delisting was the result of judicial rulings, not favors curried from this or that politician, nor an act of charity by any government.

 

                              

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