Are there good terrorists and bad terrorists?
(Mojahedin Khalq, MKO, MEK, Rajavi cult and their American backers)
... It was founded in mid 1960s as a leftist Marxist and Islamic movement. First, it fought against the Shah’s regime in Iran. After the Islamic Revolution, for a short period of time, it supported the new regime, but later went on to harshly oppose it. During the Iran – Iraq war in late 1980s it sided with Saddam Hussein and continued to receive aid from his regime until the Western invasion of Iraq in 2003. Recently, it was reportedly linked with Israeli Mossad and believed to be involved in the assassination of several Iranian nuclear scientists..U.S. holds it responsible for the deaths of at least 6 Americans ...
Volkhonsky Boris, The Voie of Russia , March 19, 2012
Over the weekend, the NBC News reported that the Treasury Department has started an investigation into alleged links between about 40 former and currently acting top-rank officials and the Iranian exile group the People's Mujahedin of Iran, or Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK) classified as a foreign terrorist organization by the U.S. State Department.
The list of officials include former FBI Director Louis Freeh, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Hugh Shelton, former Pennsylvania governor and ex-Chairman of the Democratic National Committee Edward Rendell, and many more others from both major parties. All of them have lobbied extensively, speaking at various fora in favor of removing the MEK from the terror list.
Many of the speakers have received about $30,000 or more per talk and first-class flights to European capitals, and the total amount spent by some unnamed donors exceeded hundreds of thousands of dollars. Thus, Edward Rendell alone has received about $160,000 over the past year for appearing at about seven conferences and rallies, including some in Paris, Brussels and Geneva, according to his office.
Some of the people, whose names have been connected with the investigation, claim that they never knew that the money was coming from the MEK, assuming that it came from wealthy American and foreign supporters of the MEK, not the group itself. Otherwise, they claim, they would have never indulged in the business of supporting terrorists.
Now, it is worth looking at what the group actually is. It was founded in mid 1960s as a leftist Marxist and Islamic movement. First, it fought against the Shah’s regime in Iran. After the Islamic Revolution, for a short period of time, it supported the new regime, but later went on to harshly oppose it. During the Iran – Iraq war in late 1980s it sided with Saddam Hussein and continued to receive aid from his regime until the Western invasion of Iraq in 2003. Recently, it was reportedly linked with Israeli Mossad and believed to be involved in the assassination of several Iranian nuclear scientists.
Iranian government sources claim that the MEK is responsible for at least 17,000 deaths of Iranians. And the U.S. holds it responsible for the deaths of at least 6 Americans. The MEK was included into the State Department terror list in 1997, where it has remained ever since. But the European Union removed the People’s Mujahedin from a similar list in 2009.
Lately, the lobbying for the removal of the MEK from the U.S. terror list has intensified. And as the Treasury Department probe reveals, the level of lobbyist is so high that a decision in favor of the group can be expected shortly.
Now, the question is, why now? The answer is obvious. The MEK group positions itself as the sole representative of Iranian people fighting against the present regime. And despite the fact that it enjoys virtually no support among Iranians, and that to most outside observers it resembles rather a kind of a cult than a people’s movement (putting aside the terrorist history), the end of toppling the present regime justifies all the means, including the alliance with terrorists.
Indeed, how many more times will we have to talk of the notorious “double standards” used as one of the most important tools by the U.S. diplomacy? And how many more times will we have to remember the old saying ascribed to Franklin D. Roosevelt and allegedly used by him in reference to Nicaraguan dictator Anastasio Somoza, “Somoza is a son of a bitch, but he is our son of a bitch”?
Boris Volkhonsky, senior research fellow, Russian Institute for Strategic Studies
Deeper into Terrorism
Assassinations Joint work of Israel and Mojahedin Khalq
(aka;MKO, MEK, Rajavi cult)
... Anyone in Israel, the United States, or anywhere else hoping for a salubrious regime change in Iran would be foolish to have anything to do with the MEK. Even more important than what is foolish is what is immoral. Terrorism denies the high ground to anyone who uses it, including the use of it in disagreements with Iran. It also hastens the slide through mutually reinforcing hostility into what may be a far more destructive form of violence (i.e., a war). Although the United States has not been involved in the assassinations, the nature of its relationship with Israel, both real and perceived means that Israel's actions suck the United States farther down the slide ...
Paul Pillar, The National Interest, Feb 09 2012
Although the assassinations of Iranian scientists have until now been followed by no indication of responsibility other than smug comments of satisfaction from officials of the most likely foreign state perpetrator, now NBC offers something more specific. According to a report by Richard Engel and Robert Windrem, the assassinations have been the joint work of Israel and the Iranian cult-cum-terrorist group Mujahedin-e Khalq. According to the report, the partnership has involved Israel providing financing, training and arms to the MEK to accomplish the hits, as well as to commit other acts of violent sabotage inside Iran. The story tracks with accusations from officials of the Iranian government, who say they base most of what they know on interrogations and captured materials from a failed assassination attempt in 2010. Such accusations by themselves would be easy to dismiss, of course, as more of the regime’s propaganda. But the NBC story cites two senior U.S. officials, speaking anonymously, as confirming the story. A third official said “it hasn’t been clearly confirmed yet,” although like the others he denied any U.S. involvement. The Israeli foreign ministry declined comment; the MEK denied the story.
With or without confirmation of details of this story, the assassinations are terrorism. (The official U.S. government definition of terrorism for reporting and statistic-keeping purposes is “premeditated, politically motivated violence perpetrated against non-combatant targets by subnational groups or clandestine agents.”) The extra twist in this new report is the use by Israel—already widely believed to have been responsible for the murders—of the MEK, a group with a long track record of terrorism that has included American victims. Other parts of that record, including the MEK having been an arm of Saddam Hussein's security forces, have meant the group has almost no popular support within Iran. Anyone in Israel, the United States, or anywhere else hoping for a salubrious regime change in Iran would be foolish to have anything to do with the MEK.
Even more important than what is foolish is what is immoral. Terrorism denies the high ground to anyone who uses it, including the use of it in disagreements with Iran. It also hastens the slide through mutually reinforcing hostility into what may be a far more destructive form of violence (i.e., a war). Although the United States has not been involved in the assassinations, the nature of its relationship with Israel, both real and perceived (President Obama commented the other day about staying in “lockstep” with Israel on Iran), means that Israel's actions suck the United States farther down the slide.
Amid all the reasons for dismay and outrage over this, there is also an irony. One of the oft-repeated rationales for the conventional wisdom that an Iranian nuclear weapon would be unacceptable is that it would somehow turn Iran into a regional marauder that would recklessly throw its weight around the Middle East in damaging ways. Well, there is an example of a Middle Eastern state that behaves in such a way, but it isn't Iran. This state invades neighboring countries, ruthlessly inflicting destruction on civilian populations, and seizes and colonizes territory through military force. It also uses terrorist group proxies as well as its own agents to conduct assassinations in other countries in the region.
Besides terrorism, there also is, as with any prototypical rogue state, a nuclear weapons angle. This state, unlike Iran, has never signed the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty or admitted an international inspector to any of its nuclear facilities. Even though it has had a sizable arsenal of nuclear weapons for decades, it has kept its nuclear weapons program completely out of reach of any international scrutiny or arms control regime and does not even acknowledge the program's existence. It also is so intent on maintaining its regional nuclear weapons monopoly that it is using terrorism to strike at the nuclear program of a country that doesn't even have one nuclear weapon and probably hasn't made a decision to make one.
One could almost argue that this record of behavior supports that conventional wisdom about what an Iranian nuke would do to Iran's behavior. But actually it doesn't. The behavior of the state in question is made possible not by nuclear weapons but instead by its conventional military superiority over its neighbors and by the cover provided by a subservient, protective great power whose policies it is able to manipulate.
The United States needs to distance itself as much as possible from this ugliness, for the sake of adhering to its own principles as well as trying to avoid sliding any further toward catastrophe. It was good that Secretary of State Clinton quickly disavowed the most recent assassination, but distancing requires something more. Forget the lockstep business. Israel is out of step with American policy because it evidently is out of step with American values and American interests. Washington needs to proclaim loudly and repeatedly that the sort of terrorism that the NBC report describes is the antithesis of how differences with Iran ought to be settled, and that those differences need to be settled through diplomacy. Then negotiate like we really mean it. Two distinguished retired U.S. diplomats, William Luers and Thomas Pickering, have recently provided some excellent instruction on how to do that.
Mojahedin Khalq (MKO, MEK, Rajavi cult) terrorists in Iraq battle using press releases targetting UNAMI
... But soon after, the group began complaining about conditions in Camp Liberty and accusing the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), which in January said Liberty met "international humanitarian standards," of misrepresenting conditions there. The PMOI's focus on public relations campaigns marked by frequent statements to the media and cultivating well-known western politicians to speak on its behalf differs dramatically from its past activities. The leftwing group was founded in the 1960s to oppose the shah of Iran, but took up arms against the country's new clerical rulers after the 1979 Islamic revolution ...
Iran exiles in Iraq do battle using press releases
An Iraq-based Iranian opposition group that is fixated on conspiracy theories allegedly carried out attacks in Iran and elsewhere for decades, but now relies on a different weapon: the press release.
The United Nations mission here, which has been attempting to facilitate the exit of some 3,400 members of the opposition People's Mujahedeen Organisation of Iran (PMOI) from Iraq, where they have been based for decades, has been the latest target of the group's statement-issuing ire.
Iraq wants the PMOI out of its territory, and signed an agreement with the UN in December to that end.
On February 18, the first group of 397 exiles moved from their longtime base of Camp Ashraf in Diyala province northeast of Baghdad to Camp Liberty, a former US military base near the Iraqi capital, as part of that process.
But soon after, the group began complaining about conditions in Camp Liberty and accusing the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), which in January said Liberty met "international humanitarian standards," of misrepresenting conditions there.
The PMOI's focus on public relations campaigns marked by frequent statements to the media and cultivating well-known western politicians to speak on its behalf differs dramatically from its past activities.
The leftwing group was founded in the 1960s to oppose the shah of Iran, but took up arms against the country's new clerical rulers after the 1979 Islamic revolution.
The US State Department, which blacklists the PMOI as a terrorist organisation, says it has carried out attacks that killed Iranians, as well as American soldiers and civilians, from the 1970s into 2001.
Now-executed Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein allowed the PMOI to establish Camp Ashraf in Iraq after he launched the 1980-88 war with Iran in which the group reportedly fought alongside his forces, and provided financial backing to the group.
But the PMOI said it renounced violence in 2001 and its members in Iraq were disarmed following the 2003 US-led invasion, leaving it in need of other tactics.
It successfully campaigned to be delisted as a terrorist organisation in Europe and is working to do the same in the US too.
A day after the first group of the exiles moved to Liberty, PMOI spokesman Shahriar Kia sent a statement by email alleging a UN expert who assessed the camp told "lies" and apparently "was compelled to file an unrealistic report," with "necessary modifications" made by "political authorities" from UNAMI.
"The bungalows and toilet facilities" were "dirty and unusable," and "there is serious water shortage and electricity is cut off, as in prisons, after 10.30 pm."
A statement emailed the next day described Camp Liberty as "a highly controlled prison," referring to the presence of Iraqi security forces.
Iraqi forces carried out two deadly raids on Camp Ashraf in 2009 and 2011, leaving dozens of people dead.
It continued: "Everything shows that at the behest of the Iranian regime, the Iraqi government has turned this camp into a prison and regretfully, UNAMI and (UN envoy) Mr Martin Kobler himself ... assist in this prison-making by confirming it as a refugee camp."
Another email from Kia on February 27 referred to the "lies that Martin Kobler made to the residents of Camp Ashraf for a forcible relocation to Camp Liberty."
When asked about the PMOI statements, Kobler told AFP that Camp Liberty "was host of 5,000 American soldiers, so it should be possible to have the infrastructure ready also for these 400 persons who are now living there."
"I do not think that the infrastructure problem is the problem," he said.
"If there is garbage, the garbage can be removed and should be removed, and the government of Iraq stands ready ... to have garbage trucks available, but they have to enter the camp to remove the garbage," he said.
"The aim of the whole exercise is to have the ... refugee status determination moving," he said, referring to a process which must be completed before the exiles can be resettled.
The PMOI meanwhile says it is facing "conspiracies."
"The whole plan for the relocation of the residents of Camp Ashraf to Camp Liberty is an Iranian plan, and the mullah?s regime?s plan, and nobody else," Kia said in an interview with AFP, referring to the cleric-led government in Tehran.
He referred to the new camp as "Prison Liberty," saying that "their plan is to destroy the Iranian opposition" there.
Kia also said that "espionage cameras and ... eavesdropping devices" in Liberty give information "to the Iranian embassy and to the agents of the Iranian regime."
When asked about the purpose of the flurry of statements on the UN, Kia referred to demands over Camp Liberty.
These include the removal of Iraqi armed forces from Liberty and freedom of movement for residents, but also, despite numerous statements accusing the UN of lying about conditions there, a demand for around-the-clock UN monitoring.
(Massoud and Maryam Rajavi, cult leaders)
(Maryam Rajavi directly ordered the massacre of Kurdish people)
(Ali Safavi as the commander of Saddam's Private Army in Iraq)
(Daniel Zucker, Maryam Rajavi and ALi Safavi in terror HQ in Paris )
Jafarzadeh representing terrorist organisation NCRI
(Picture form MKO/ NCRI clandestine television)
Jafarzadeh has already published his suicide bombing note