The disturbances we are witnessing today on the streets of Iran are the result of decades of oppression by the clerical regime and of the world’s neglect in allowing the regime to continue violating many red lines.
Instead of bringing the Iranian administration to book over the slaughter of thousands of innocent people both within the country and abroad, the world decided to make deals with Iran, releasing billions of its impounded dollars frozen in international banks due to its illegal pursuance of nuclear weapons.
History of misrule
As I have shown in earlier articles, the regime has used the riches it acquired from country’s resources and from the billions returned following the Iran Deal to line its own pockets and those of the commanders of the Revolutionary Guards Corps.
In addition, the regime has spent billions to acquire long-range missiles with the ability to carry nuclear weapons and to strengthen its armed forces to fight wars for colonial gain to the detriment of the Iranian people, who have been allowed to exist at subsistence levels.
In the wake of such treatment, the people of Iran have risen up. For decades, they have witnessed friends and family members being hung for speaking out against government policies — many of them children, even pregnant women. Many of those arrested never faced a fair trial, while many were tortured to death in Iran’s hideous prisons, such as Evin.
The Iranian regime was born out of a violent revolution, in the same violent way it may be destroyed, through people power. Through anger, through decades of pain and suffering, through violent oppression, a new revolution is born. The Iranian people have suffered enough, they have been robbed of their rightful pay, many having become unemployed through the regime’s mismanagement of the economy.
There are also frustrated university students with no prospects in life, who have also been seen in great numbers amongst the protestors, as well as many ordinary people who have been bringing up families in dire poverty.
Legacy of autocratic misrule
All of this is the legacy of the autocratic misrule, where the clerical elite have been living in luxury, driving top of the range cars, and are adorned in jewellery, while the people they rule barely eke out an existence.
But should things really turn bad for them, the leadership have siphoned off tens of millions in foreign bank accounts. They also have property abroad and are ready to start a new life abroad should they be thrown out of Iran.
When world leaders stood up to applaud the signing of the Iran Deal, they thought nothing of the plight of the Iranian people, who are living under a violent, autocratic regime, where the hanging of dissidents is daily routine.
The regime was has been striving to achieve its hegemonic ambitions in Syria, Iraq and Yemen and has had a history of backing proxies to carry out terrorist attacks across the globe. However, these facts meant little to foreign deal makers, all they could think about was the money they could make through lucrative trade transactions.
With the Iran Deal in place, Hezbollah has gained considerably with extra cash pumped into its coffers by the Iranian regime. Billions have also been spent to shore up Assad’s crumbling dictatorship, while Iranian troops and proxies have been paid to murder thousands of innocent people in Syria, Iraq and Yemen, all through military interventions in the cause of hegemony.
All of this is being done by the regime knowing full well that Iran’s own economy is crumbling, and as the money pours out of the country, Iranian people would have to endure dire economic consequences.
Iranians chant slogans as they march in support of the government near the Imam Khomeini grand mosque in Tehran on December 30, 2017. (AFP)
The Iranian people are so incensed by the way they have been treated, that they have come out on the streets in the largest mass demonstrations since Iranian security forces viciously crushed the 2009 Green Movement. With the new revolution now in full swing, the regime finds itself in deep trouble, all of its own making.
There are already signs of a violent crackdown, with demonstrators being warned they will “pay a price” and face the “nation’s iron fist” if they continue to protest. Reports are already coming in of protestors being shot in the streets, with at least two protestors having been killed in the city of Doud in Iran’s western province, and severe violence being used against peaceful demonstrators.
Water cannons are being deployed against demonstrators, tear gas, and also live rounds of ammunition. Online videos have shown bodies in the streets, while others have shown people being dragged away covered in blood. From the way protests have accelerated since last Thursday, if the regime reacts as it always reacts to public dissent, the body count is sure to rise rapidly.
But should the Iranian administration push its luck too far. Donald Trump has already warned against a brutal crackdown, as unlike his predecessors in the White House, he is a president that is determined to hold the clerics to account for their past crimes against their people.
He also understands the plight of an innocent population being subdued by a vast military power, which is forcing them to live under the yoke of tyranny. More important, Trump also believes that the Iran Deal was a farce, which left clerics in a position to gain a nuclear weapon even as they continue to support terrorism abroad.
Writing on the wall
The bravery of the Iranian people is beyond doubt. In the video footage smuggled out of the country, young women have been shown giving the victory sign amid clouds of teargas, crowds of unarmed civilians have been shown converging on armed security forces, many covered in blood, but all remaining on the streets to protest, as they now see they have a real chance to bring down this violent regime.
In response to the anti-government protests, where the people have come out onto the streets waving banners hastily put together on large pieces of cardboard, the regime has sent its rent-a-crowd onto the streets in support of its autocratic rule carrying glossy placards.
But this show of government support had been in the planning for weeks, to celebrate the end of the 2009 disturbances, and many of those supporting the government, are as always, certain to be connected to the security forces, or government institutions.
With all of them supplied with pristine, well-printed placards fresh off the press, and carrying large photographs of their Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei. Those protesting in support of the government, are those living well under the regime, while those protesting against it are living in misery.
When outsiders view the support for the regime, they should realise that it is very easy for the clerics to bring thousands onto the streets, as with its Basij militia forces and agents stationed in every village, town and city district in Iran, and the whole of the country’s security forces amounting to hundreds of thousands, vast numbers would be ready to take part in demonstration of their loyalty to their paymaster Khamenei.
But at the end of the day, it will be the Iranian people who prevail, and whether today or in the near future, the Iranian regime will fall, and the people will be triumphant.
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not reflect the viewpoint of Al Arabiya English.SHOW MORE