By Ted Poe, Originally Published in Washington Times, Thursday, November 17, 2022
The United States, Britain, and the European Union have all duly condemned the Iranian regime’s brutal crackdown of recent protests. But vague expressions of support are not enough in light of thousands of Iranian citizens risking their lives on a daily basis as part of a long-frustrated effort to secure their most basic rights.
Western powers issued similar messages of disapproval at the outset of crackdowns on prior nationwide uprisings, but at no point did those words prove capable of manufacturing shame in the hearts and minds of Iranian officials, and so mass arrests, killings, and torture went on unabated.
In November 2019 alone, Iranian authorities killed upwards of 1,500 people when the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) carried out mass shootings. Now, they are threatening more aggressive treatment not only of those participating in the current uprising but also those sharing videos and eyewitness accounts which the IRGC describes as “rumors” and “fake news.”
There is little doubt that the judiciary, headed by notorious human rights abuser Gholamhossein Mohseni-Ejei, is prepared to follow suit. He was promoted into his position after serving as deputy to Ebrahim Raisi, before the latter was tapped by Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei to take over the presidency last year. This reshuffle of key positions led to a predictable upsurge in the regime’s familiar human rights violations, and the current uprising is a response to its effects. Ordinary Iranians are also tired of decades-long poverty, rampant inflation, structural corruption and the regime’s brutal oppression. READ MORE…
Judge Ted Poe represented the Second district of Texas in the U.S. House of Representatives from 2005 to 2019 and is the former chairman of the Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation, and Trade in the House Foreign Affairs Committee