In interview with the Kaleme website Mir Hossein Mousavi one of the green movement leaders called one of the top intelligence Commanders of IRGC speeches in Mashhad an undeniable evidence of a coup in last years election, he also spoke once more, about the movement’s characteristics and said that it was the outcome of the “unattended demands of the past one hundred years.” He described pro-democracy Green Movement in Iran as “alive, freedom-seeking, liberating and modern with a look towards tradition and the past.” He said that movement’s roots were becoming deeper every day.
Addressing Iran’s hardliners currently in control of the country, Mousavi said, “[let’s] assume that we are all either ‘enemies’ or ‘tricked by the enemy’, by returning to the people, the law and avoiding tyranny, you yourselves [can] pick up the green flag.” He asked Iran’s illegitimate statesmen, “who has given you the right to make us confront the rest of the world and to create such critical conditions for the country’s economic and political situation with your adventurism and despotism?”
When asked about the current status of the Green Movement and its future, Mousavi said, “The Green Movement is alive and its roots are deepening. The Green Movement is a green word that has risen from the loving hearts of the people and it is the outcome of unattended demands of the [Iranian people] throughout the past hundred years, especially the demands that had resulted from the Islamic Revolution [in 1979]. Most importantly, it is a modern movement and compatible with the characteristics and necessities of the today’s word. If you pay heed, the slogans and demands [raised] by the movement are such that the hardliners’ open [public] opposition towards them is made difficult.”
“Who can publicly stand against the desire for freedom, justice and free elections without vetting [of candidates]? Or who can dismiss the reliance on the values of diverse ethnic cultures or simply and loudly declare that he does not accept human dignity or that he does wish for the people to be in control of their own destiny?”
Mousavi continued, “who can say that the regeneration of [religious] tyranny … is something desirable?” “We know that with the exception of a few sick [individuals] dependent on power who benefit from the exploitation of national resources, in the conscience of no one, not even the security forces, military and dark-clothed Basij [militia], there is no pleasure in killings, clampdowns and imprisonment of intellectuals, teachers, workers, women and men.”
“This is the reason why those opposed to the [Green] Movement [begin to] create enemies when they cannot face the movement’s demands,” said Mousavi, while referring once more to the voice recording of Revolutionary Guards commander Moshfegh who had recently admitted the IRGC’s role in the engineering June 2009 presidential elections and its aftermath. Mousavi called Moshfegh’s comments an “important historic document.”
The former Iranian prime minister added that the comments made by Moshfegh, also demonstrated the “degenerate thought of the people’s enemies.” “This is the reason behind the hardliners’ fury over the lawsuit [launched by seven reformist figures] which was based on this so-called speech.”
“But in the face of this anger we can say, ‘assume we are all either enemies or deceived by the enemy. [Forget about us] and [simply] comply with the covenant between you and the people which is respect for the people’s rights and preserving liberties and fully implementing the constitution and the people’s right to have control over their own destiny, without having any regard for us’. By returning to the people and the law and avoiding tyranny, you yourselves [can] pick up the green flag. Who has given you the right to make us confront the rest of the world and to create such critical conditions for the country’s economic and political situation with your adventurism and despotism? Do not cheer yourselves on! Hold a referendum and see if the people accept such devastating policies or not.”
The 2009 presidential candidate once more described the Green Movement as a “freedom-seeking”, “liberating”, and “completely modern.” He argued that the Green Movement’s views regarding “tradition and the past” had not limited it and that the movement’s hopes had not resulted in hallucinations about the future. Mousavi also claimed that the government’s “destructive” policies had played an essential role in drawing the people’s attention towards the Green Movement’s slogans and presenting the movement as the “only alternative” for the current situation.
Responding to a question regarding the Iranian authorities’ claims about having put an end to the Green Movement, Mousavi said, “It’s very easy to test this claim.”
“Without filling the streets with military forces during celebrations such as the ones on 16 Azar [7 December 2009] and 15 June, let the people express their opinions based on article 27 of the constitution [which guarantees the right to assembly],” said Mousavi, while reiterating that Iran’s problems would not be solved by means of “engineered” and “guided” pro-government rallies.
“The spontaneous Takbir [chants of Allah-O-Akbar on rooftops] on Monday 20 September was by itself, a response to all those engineered [pro-government] assemblies,” said Mousavi. On the mentioned date, many Iranians took to their rooftops and in another show of unity, voiced their support for the leaders of their Green Movement, Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mahdi Karroubi who had been facing nonstop government attacks. The opposition leader said that the “effects of the Green Movement until now, cannot be reversed. You can look at the cracks that have appeared in a body poisoned with corruption and oppression. These cracks have in some instances, turned into irreparable cracks. They are regularly forced to lie in order to cover these splits.”
Mousavi continued, “today, the reputation of the regime rests upon fulfilling its promises and implementing the law in cases such as the Kahrizak [Prison] scandals, the letters of the harassed political prisoners and the crimes [that occurred] during the [nightly] attack against the dormitory of the [Tehran] University. It is absolutely clear that the authorities do not have a solution in this regard and this is why the lies are increasing every day. Every day, they are further exposed in the eyes of the Iranian people and the world.”
“Let us remember, that in the absence of the [Green] Movement, this corruption and structured tyranny and despotism could have remained hidden for a long time and [could have] positioned the country in irreversible danger.”
Referring to Ahmadinejad’s recent claims at the United Nations headquarters in New York, Mousavi added, “In short, when someone goes in front of billions of humans at the headquarters of the United Nations and says that there are no political prisoners in Iran and that those in prison had [actually] wanted to kill police officers, and [at the same time] is not able to hide his fear of green wristbands worn by athletes and artists, shows that the Green Movement is always present and everywhere, both in Iran and the rest of the world and will not leave them in peace and has put them in a position of desperation to such an extent that acknowledging the very obvious is the same as letting go of power. For this reason, raising [the] awareness [of the people] will play a vital role for the future of the country and the movement. The military forces that were brought onto the streets for scaring the population on Jerusalem Day showed that the hardliners are fully aware of how lively the movement is.”
On the question of UN sanctions against Iran, Mousavi argued that the sanctions that resulted from the government’s “adventurism” and “posturing” in its foreign policy, were “avoidable.” He also called on professors, experts and even experienced Foreign Ministry personnel to assess whether Ahmadinejad’s recent comments in New York were in line with national interests. “Of course, it is possible that we might hear a few applauds in the cafés of certain Arab countries, but the real effects of these positions are felt more every day, on the tables of the impoverished and weak of society, Bazaar and the national economy.”
During the interview with Kaleme, the popular reformist warned about the exclusion of “competent forces for the management of political and economic crises” in the country. “The establishment is experiencing dangerous illusions and is busy destroying all bridges—big and small—behind it. Otherwise, it wouldn’t [even] have considered omitting the Dialogue Among Civilisations Day from the national calendar. This seemingly trivial action shows very well, the short-sighted and partisan approach that the country is facing.”
“Should Aminzadeh be in prison today, or at the Foreign Ministry? Should Safaei Farahani be in prison and the hospital or instead at the Ministry of Economy?” Mousavi asked, referring to the imprisonment of the two reformist figures. “Whether the hardliners like it or not, most of the forces that could have played a role in [solving] this crisis, are members of the Islamic Iran Participation Front, The Mujahidin of the Islamic Revolution Organisation, the Executives of Construction Party, the National Trust Party and other similar factions. And in the middle of all this, the main issue for the country’s Chief Prosecutor, the Judiciary’s spokesperson and in effect, the spokesperson for the whole regime, is the illegality of the these factions and arresting their members.”
“I am saddened when I see the country’s best executives in prisons or in isolation instead of solving problems and reversing the effects of the destructive actions of the gentlemen [authorities] … Out of concern, I would recommend that during these difficult times—which will become more difficult—more attention is given to the thousands of experts and competent forces who have been filtered out of the systems [of government] and that their experiences should be utilised.” Nevertheless, Mousavi expressed doubts that Iranian authorities would actually heed to his calls. He accused Iran’s officials of confusing the management of the country and its international affairs with how thugs and hoodlums would achieve their aims.
Mir Hossein Mousavi, whose premiership coincided with Iran’s difficult years during the Iran-Iraq war, mentioned that acknowledging the country’s problems was an “inseparable” part of escaping the current crises. “By concealing the issues and posturing, we will not have any oil to place on the people’s dinner tables and we will not be able to guarantee Iran’s security. Deceit and misrepresenting the realities must stop, in order for us to have the whole population behind the establishment. We must know that in the long-run, for the people, more important than [preserving] a name for the state is securing their rights and respecting their human dignity. If you want to preserve Islam, you must show that in practice, Islam is not incapable of securing the rights of the people, their right to control their own destiny and solving the country’s problems and that [Islam] is against oppression, corruption, [resorting] to force, [rewarding people based on] family ties and suppression.”
He continued, “no government or political system can defend itself in the face danger by any means other than creating unity among the nation. The solution to attracting the people is to give them the assurance that their votes will not be stolen and it is they who must decide how their representative will speak at the United Nations and which countries they will befriend and which ones they will consider as enemies. It will be their representatives [Members of Parliament] who will decide when to support statesmen and when to impeach them.”
In the end, Mousavi was asked whether the proposed strategy to separate the Iranian people from the leaders of the Green Movement would work or not. “I think it is a wise strategy,” Mousavi acknowledged. “But people are attracted to groups that will not categorise them as ‘insiders’ and ‘outsiders’ for their own interests and will defend the rights of the people.”
He called on the ultraconservative parties to take a stance regarding the letters written by imprisoned politicians such as Abdollah Momeni, Hamzeh Karami and Aria Aram Nejad and to openly announce their objection to torture, forced confessions and the recent imprisonment of senior members of the Freedom Movement of Iran.
“The problems will be resolved when we close our eyes to the differences that create ‘us’ and ‘them’ and [begin to] defend what is right, even if it is against our own interests.”