On Monday, Tehran announced the highest number of COVID-19 fatalities since the virus outbreak in Iran. As the coronavirus death toll rises, state media acknowledge how the regime’s inaction and mismanagement have worsened the crisis.
Since the beginning of the coronavirus outbreak, the mullahs’ regime started a criminal policy of cover-up and inaction. While many of the regime’s health officials warned of Iran’s critical situation and the rapid spread of the virus, the regime refused the country’s shutdown. As the COVID-19 death toll continues to rise, state-run media acknowledge some dimensions of this catastrophe.
“Members of the health system and the medical community, in addition to inviting people to comply with health protocols, time and again announced that the best way of breaking the coronavirus transmission chain is closing critical cities and imposing a strict restriction.” (State-run Vatan-e Emrooz)
Instead of helping people, the mullahs’ regime reopened the economy and schools, held gatherings, mourning ceremonies, and university entrance exams. And when the virus spread and the situation got out of control, the regime either blamed people for not abiding by health protocols or international sanctions. The real reason, however, is none other than the mullahs’ mismanagement.
“But the government, by creating the paradox of ‘life and bread,’ spread this notion in the society that there is no other way other than reopening. The government, however, practically made normalization its central policy, along with some restrictions. But despite the government’s insistence on creating a balance of livelihood and health, we are witnessing a setback in both categories. In other words, the government has not been successful in the field of economics or health. The balance and proportion of livelihood and health have been disturbed in recent months.” Vatan-e Emrooz wrote on Tuesday.
The difference between COVID-19 outbreak in Iran and other countries
Since the global pandemic began, many governments rushed to the aid of their citizens. Unlike other countries, the regime denied the existence of COVID-19 for months. When it announced the presence of this virus, the regime tried to downplay this crisis. Tehran’s top officials, such as the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and President Hassan Rouhani, called this crisis a “passing matter.” Khamenei even described this virus as a “test,” and “blessing.”
In this regard, the state-run Ebtekar daily on Tuesday wrote: “The coronavirus outbreak, like many other issues in Iran, has been linked to several issues; a link that raises concerns beyond the original problem. Among the issues of concern are the indifference and lack of attention to the country’s decision-making institutions to human and global experiences.”
The regime’s intentional indifference is part of the mullahs’ strategy to control the restive society by using this deadly virus and its high mortality rate. Blaming people for the spread of this virus while not providing the minimum of hygienic facilities to them is a testament to the mullahs’ intentional inaction and indifference.
“Interestingly, decision-makers and planners blame the full responsibility on people. It is as if they have performed all of their duties in times of crisis and, by the standard protocols, have carried out the necessary messages and appropriate measures for the management of affairs,” Ebteakr daily added in its article.
People grappling with rising prices of treatment
While the regime blames people for not abiding by health protocols, reports from Iran indicate that the cost of treatment of COVID-19 patients, along with medicines, are rising.
In this regard, the state-run Seday-e Eslahat daily on Tuesday wrote: “Hossein Ali Shahriari, chairman of the Parliament’s Health Commission, said that his patients had paid invoices of 54 million Tomans, 20 million Tomans and 15 million Tomans due for being treated or hospitalized due to the coronavirus.”
In other words, while grappling with poverty, people must pay something between $545 and $1,964.
All the while, the average salary of an Iranian worker is $69.54 (according to the state-run Iran Talent website) and the average wage of Iranian employees is not more than $196 (according to the state-run ISNA news agency.)
Sadly, the outcome of the regime’s mismanagement of the COVID-19 crisis is more deaths for the Iranian people. On the other hand, this will add to the society’s restiveness and the public’s hatred towards the regime. So, the outcome for the regime is looming uprisings and more protests.
In this regard, in its article on Tuesday, Ebtekar daily admitted that mullahs have lost “the golden time,” of resolving this crisis. Not using adequate measures has resulted in a “crisis of public mistrust.” A crisis that “the responsibility of its occurrence lies more than anyone else with [regime officials] who caused such a situation.” And this crisis for the regime is nothing but further major Iran protests.