Former Iranian crown prince: ‘This generation is not waiting anymore’


For the first time in 43 years, I am very pleased that the world is getting seriously engaged with those who represent this regime’s alternative. Paradigms have changed, and so has the way governments, including Germany, take action. For oppressed people, this is incredibly empowering. I would like to explain that nuclear threats, terrorism, Iranian drones attacking Ukraine, and the growing number of refugees coming to an already saturated Europe are all linked to this regime. Not to mention Iran could be a gas exporter for its energy needs so we don’t have to worry about what Putin does next every winter. It depends.

Europe, especially the US, has already imposed sanctions on Iran. Should they continue with their maximum pressure strategy, or what else can they do to support the opposition?

The next level is to target the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps to track specific individuals and their assets abroad. However, you should also start building a policy of maximum support. For example, one of the most important factors for Iranians is access to the internet to circumvent regime censorship. Such technical assistance must be sent. Another idea is to create strike funds to compensate striking Iranian workers. Because this is the fastest way to paralyze the system.

How do you send money to Iran in an era of US sanctions on financial transfers?

You can use the frozen assets of the regime, which is the money of the Iranian people. That money can be reused. We are not asking the Germans to put money in the pockets of the Iranian people. It’s just a matter of deciding whether to use assets that are already there. There should be some option to make exceptions to the sanctions to bring money to the people and not the dictator.

Are you disappointed that Europe has not yet listed the Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist organization?

Well our Spanish friend [Josep Borrell, the European Union’s foreign policy chief] Not very helpful, right? There should be a legal way to do it. Whatever it is, that is our expectation. The IRGC is a legalized mafia. It is not only a means of controlling the economy, it is also a paramilitary instrument, the backbone of regime leaders, [Ayatollah Ali] Khamenei. The Islamic Republic deploys its army, tanks and artillery not to fight foreign invaders, but to kill its own people. The EU cannot be said to defend freedom and human rights, and at the same time it does not authorize the greatest means of repression.

How important is listing to the success of a revolution?

Required for shedding to occur. We want to reduce the level of human loss by showing the military, especially those not committing heinous crimes, that they can be part of the future. The more they see it being done, the more incentive they have to switch sides.

How likely are they to do so?

The top echelon of the IRGC is like the head of the Politburo in the Soviet era. They profit from their financial control and corruption. But it doesn’t drip down the ranks below. The average man has two jobs in order to reach his goals. At heart the army is ready to come against the people. But in order to do so, we need to have a clear sense of the alternatives and understand the critical role they can play in maintaining law and order during the transition. But to do that, we need to make sure the world supports that change.

Do you see cracks within the Islamic regime?

The unity of the regime is Khamenei himself. He has been desperately trying to promote his son as his successor, but with him gone it will be very difficult to achieve.There are already many fragments in what is called the tent of the leader. . It has cracks and also affects the IRGC. On the other hand, there are a lot of what we call the gray layer, the undecided. A former reformer is now on the scene saying that we must move beyond reform.

You and other prominent figures of the opposition in exile recently put forward the idea of ​​a common charter for the transition. Is it written yet?

95% done. Coming soon. But first, we want to make sure we pass approval for those in Iran. The Charter addresses the minimum terms upon which the widest breadth of secular democratic forces can agree. The final decision-making body should be the Constituent Assembly. There may be disagreements, but we’ll leave that to the new Congress to decide. What matters now is what we will do when the regime falls. For example, there are groups focused on economics, judicial issues, and transitional justice.

Can you tell me the first sentence of the charter?

I don’t have the text for you, but it’s a concept that I’ve learned from traveling to so many different countries. is. The first is a feeling of freedom and true freedom. The second is participation. And the third, which I think is even more important than the first two, is dignity. These principles are incorporated into the Declaration of Human Rights, the reference text on which Iran’s future constitution is expected to be based.

How many people are you asking to sign in Iran?

It’s a very broad approach. The messages are mostly through social media. We have constant Zoom calls and Google Meets with insiders, activists, and political prisoners. It’s a direct dialogue. It is then distributed in its own network among universities and teachers. Student activism is very important.

Why did it take the opposition parties over 40 years to cooperate?

I wish it would have happened 40 years ago. That was the first time the article mentioned that a referendum and a Constituent Assembly were needed to decide the future. However, it may take time and there are also religious factors. Today, clerics have lost complete respect and mosques are empty. It is the fault of those who commit crimes on the pretext of religion. Many of Iran’s devout Muslims don’t want that. They had to learn it the hard way.

And why wasn’t there an earlier United Opposition in exile?

It’s not that I didn’t want to be with you. The dynamics of political change in Iran today are much more geared to street demands, as opposed to some groups that lined up based on ideological preferences. The opposition had to reinvent itself — in the sense that what we do and say today should be relevant to people on the streets.

One group not represented by the united opposition is the Mujahideen-e-Khalq, who call themselves the largest Iranian opposition group in exile. If so, what role do they play? Do you and other opposition parties speak to them?

The biggest problem for me is the internal limitation of having an open dialogue with other democratic forces. Banning members from free dialogue is a bit of a cult idea. That’s why it’s almost impossible to participate in an open process. Political inclusion is based on accepting democratic rules. If these principles contained in the Charter are something they are willing to subscribe to, why not? But it is up to them. To this day, they have never really accepted it.

Your family was part of the monarchy. How can people trust you to be part of the democratic process?

First, because they know that I am my own man and that no son or daughter can be held accountable for anything my parents have done. I was 17. All I’ve said since then is, “Hey, I’m not running for any office here.” I’m just trying to see the transition where people make decisions. This is a much more rewarding role that I can play without getting caught up in the patterns of state and governance.

Cultural change is also needed, democratic culture has not permeated the country. I can contribute more in that direction. Because in free countries, America, France he lived for 40 years and visited countries like Germany. Supporting the educational process means sitting at the table with many ministers to decide the day’s policy, or being stuck in the palace as a symbolic leader, or wearing a muzzle and speaking their minds freely. I am not fighting for your freedom to be the first victim.

Hundreds of thousands of signatures Online petition to give you power of attorneyWhat do you think about it?

Many understand how important my role is in the transition. But it has nothing to do with whether the future is a republic or a monarchy. People automatically assume that I am a candidate for the monarchy. necessarily. If my choice is either a secular republic elected by the people or an institution still based on hereditary rule, it cannot be reconciled with the norms of democracy.

Negotiations for a new nuclear deal have stalled, but Iran is enriching uranium as we speak. Do you have any advice for foreign leaders on how to deal with this?

Our claims are: The best way to completely eliminate the danger is to eliminate the regime. How credible were the previous administrations, even after signing some kind of agreement? I saw you go. Time is running out. And now we have the opportunity, together with the Iranian people themselves, to end this problem once and for all.

Israel has recently had very large military exercises with the United States. People are discussing so-called military options to end Iran’s nuclear program…

…this is a nightmare. Especially when people in that country say, ‘Hey, we’re on the streets, please help us get rid of the regime..“How did you end apartheid? At one point, we defended those who wanted it to end. How did you end it?” [Gen. Wojciech] Jaruzelski in Poland? By supporting the solidarity movement of Lech Walesa and the company.

Why shouldn’t Iran be part of the same rationale? We are already risking our lives and losing people every day. let’s work with us You have the best army – people. We will work hard to achieve stability the moment this regime leaves. We need to work with our Israeli and Arab neighbors. We need to work with Europeans on energy and security issues.

Can you imagine going back to Iran?

I see myself traveling in trailers to the four corners of the country, camping just to socialize with people. That way you can get a sense of what people really want and show you how to be more influential in their decision making. I believe that the secret of an established democracy is active citizen action. It is very difficult to insert a positive mindset into the very traditional Middle Eastern culture of always sitting back and saying, “Someone will do something for me.” But this generation is waiting no longer.

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