After the fraudulent June 12, 2009, Presidential elections in Iran, Iranians poured into the streets by the millions, chanting "Where is my vote?" The thunderous protests were the birth pangs of the Green Movement. That was 6 months ago and the movement has rapidly evolved into a massive force aiming to sweep aside the current regime. Street slogans have changed from “where is my vote?” to “death to the dictator, in direct reference to Ahmadinejad and the supreme leader, Ali Khamenei. Longstanding slogans, vilifying the U.S. and Israel, have been drowned out by slogans against the supporters of the Islamic regime, such as Russia and China. The brutal Ahmadinejad-Khamenei gang has its back against the wall. Every major Iranian city, its universities and many
workplaces are festooned with graffiti against the leaders of the regime. The supreme leader, previously presumed above the law of the land, is now loudly proclaimed by the masses as a murderer who has lost the legitimacy of his office. In fact, the very office of the Supreme Guide and the Islamic Republic is soundly rejected by the masses clamoring for an Iranian Republic to replace the Islamic Republic.
All signs point to an early demise of the Islamic Republic and the establishment of a secular democracy completely divorced from Islam. On December 27, 2009, the day of Ashoura, the world watched in amazement as the masses of brave fed-up people confronted the security forces and hired Basij members of the Islamic Republic and shook its very foundation, an early indication of the peoples’ determination to bring the Mullahcracy to its knees. It was a day of victory for the people of Iran over the fundamentalists who have had a stranglehold on the people for more than three decades. The peaceful protest against the regime by millions throughout the land is a clear signal that the Islamic theocracy is in an irreversible downfall. The overwhelming majority of the people are no longer willing to settle for a vote recount or a less repressive Islamic rule. They are determined to establish a fully secular democracy with complete separation of mosque and state. The Islamic Republic response to the legitimate peaceful demands of the people has been an iron fist in the form of heartless beatings of the demonstrators—both men and women—their arrests, torture and rape of some in secretive compounds, and even shooting the unarmed in the streets, a standard stock of dictatorships, yet the surest way of swelling and solidifying the ranks of the dissenters. The recent uprisings of the people are reminiscent of the 1979 revolution that ended the monarchy in Iran. A fragmented state led by brutal yet indecisive men is suddenly faced by a fed-up and determined opposition. To be sure, the regime still has all the guns and resources, along with unlimited ruthlessness, to prolong its life. Yet, there is no question that the Islamic Republic’s demise is a foregone conclusion. It is crumbling from within as well. The previously solid oppressive rule is no longer. Deep cracks are popping up in the system and among the contending factions. Realistically speaking, there is perhaps 10-15 percent of the population that still supports the clerical system to various degrees. Many in this group are government employees, Mullahs, and hired elements such as Basiji. Also, the regime has some backers among the poor, the less educated, and the deeply religious. Yet, the alienation from the regime spans the entire spectrum of the Iranian society with the intelligentsia and the university students leading the determined opposition. Ahmadinejad and Ali Khamenei are greatly despised by the overwhelming majority of Iranians. The two and their functionaries are in deep trouble with the masses that are going to take them to account before very long. It is noteworthy that the government exercises maximum brutality on the one hand and it is forced to retreat in some respects in other areas. For instance, in response to the unrelenting pressure exerted by the people demanding accountability for the post election atrocities, the government recently admitted to some of the crimes committed in various prisons by charging 12 jailers with torture and the death of prisoners. This admission is hugely significant. The Mullahs are retreating by punishing their own followers in the hope of placating the populace. It is not going to work. Unbeknownst to them, the admission reinforces the determination of the protesters and fuels their fire on the one hand, and serves to frighten their own followers for carrying out orders of torture and killing in the future. The perpetrators feel that they may be the next sacrificial lambs for the top echelons. Another telling indication is the events in Qom during the funeral of the popular dissident Grand Ayatollah Montazeri. In spite of a huge effort by the various security forces to block access to the city, many thousands converged from all parts of Iran to the city to honor him. During this ceremony, tens of thousands chanted slogans such as “death to the dictator, “Montazeri lives, Khamenei is dead.” Most telling was the throngs of people sporting the green color and using the occasion to express their aversion to the Islamic rule within the precincts of the holy mosque, something unheard of before. It is a clear signal that the opposition movement is massive and determined, capable of exploiting any opportunity to disempower the regime. These unrelenting demonstrations against the regime are not limited to universities—the traditional bastions of political activism. They are spreading to every segment of the society and bode ill for the regime. The pressure, led by the vanguard of freedom, university students and notably women, is not subsiding, it is gathering more force. Yes, the end of the IRI is definitely coming. It can use a significant nudge from the U.S., Israel and all others who are willing to bring it down not only from a sense of humanitarian altruism but from the vantage point of their own best interests. So far, the regime has chosen a containment strategy: Releasing Basij militias to beat and intimidate the protesters while arresting many, including a significant number of its former loyalists. Meanwhile, as the regime continues its brutal treatment of the opposition, more and more members of the security forces are resenting their role as oppressors and tormentors of their own people and may even look for an opportune time to turn their guns on the regime itself. The Mullahs presently ruling Iran are faced with monumental threats. Internally, the great majority of the populace is against their misrule. Labor unions, teachers associations, student groups, religious and ethnic minorities, journalists and many others have suffered and continue to suffer inordinate hardship under the heavy-handed Mullahs and their front men. Externally, they are engaged in brinksmanship with the United States and Israel, while trying to wrestle the mantle of Islamic leadership from the Sunni Saudis and their Wahhabi cabal.
Sadly, President Obama is intent on making deals with the inveterate Mullahs, moving along the same treacherous path of his four predecessors who accomplished nothing other than prolonging the life of these Islamist miscreants. The politically on the rope Mullahs are also facing horrendous economic problems created by their three decades of mismanagement, larceny, neglect of domestic needs and allocation of funds to Hamas, Hizbollah, Iraqi troublemakers, and the Yemeni insurgency. Inflation, unemployment, and under-employment are fraying the financial base of the society. Capital flight is siphoning development funds, and foreign investments are drying up, while the Mullahs are relentlessly pursuing the expensive nuclear weapon program.
Further eroding the Mullahs’ reign is the populace’s ever-increasing distrust of the propaganda they receive. It is common to hear the Iranian people say that you can find truth anywhere except in the IRI controlled media and its paid mercenaries such as the NIAC and AIC in the US. A thorny issue of great concern to Israel and the U.S. is the Mullahs’ gallop to join the nuclear club and use the bomb as a club over the head of any nation, near or far, that stands in their way or does not accede to their demands. And it is here that some advocated a pre-emptive action by Israel, the U.S., or both to postpone, if not prevent the Mullahs from achieving their objective.
For example, attacking the Bushehr nuclear facility alone would be a nightmare, releasing radiation into the atmosphere. "To attack Iran's nuclear facilities will not only provoke war, but it could also unleash clouds of radiation far beyond the targets and the borders of Iran," Elias Tuma, of the Arab Internet Network, told the Federal News Service last March. In addition, it is almost a certainty that Iran would retaliate by hitting Israel's Dimona nuclear complex. It is by far more prudent for the U.S., Israel and all other concerned nations to cooperate on imposing effective and immediate sanctions on the Mullahs’ regime, even though the unscrupulous mercantile Chinese and the devious duplicitous Russians will not participate and might even do what they can to exploit the situation to their own economic advantage. In my view, it is a bad idea to even think about bombing Iran’s nuclear facilities. An Israeli unilateral military action is a horrible idea. Israel will never see peace if it ever attacks. It is simply a bad idea. Why not implement effective sanctions and support the Iranian opposition to disarm and dislodge the Mullahs? Why this foolishness of being trigger-happy and shooting from the hip? Let us be realistic. How much success did Israel have in punching into Lebanon next door to crush the Hizbollah? All the lives that the Israelis lost failed to achieve the objective of eliminating the Hizbollah. The best strategy that stands the greatest chance of success and entails the least risk of starting a cataclysmic chain reaction is for a “coalition of the willing,” to borrow a phrase, to rally behind the Iranian opposition. It is the democracy-seeking secular Iranians who are thoroughly capable of dislodging the tyrannical Mullahs. The call of the opposition should be resoundingly answered by President Obama and all other nations and leaders, not only for humanitarian reasons, but in furtherance of their own national interests.