BEHIND THE IRAN HEADLINES Series, JUNE 18, 2022 Alireza Jafarzadeh, NCRI-US Deputy Director
A year ago, today, in a political circus known as “elections”, massively boycotted by the Iranian people, with the lowest turnout ever, even with hugely inflated official tallies, the regime’s Supreme Leader Khamenei had Ebrahim Raisi to be announced as his president.
At the time the mullahs’ propaganda machine began portraying him as a savior on a mission to resolve all crises engulfing his regime.
A year after, however, people from all walks of life are taking to the streets throughout Iran and chanting “Death to Khamenei” and “Death to Raisi!” delivering a major blow to Khamenei’s strategy of using Raisi to silence a restive populace and groom him as his successor.
Khamenei had heavily gambled on the success of this ploy. He purged almost all other political factions even many of his longtime allies to shield and elevate Raisi.
But now, on daily basis, he sees the dismal failure of this strategy with the “Death to Raisi” loud and clear in Iran protests.
Even before he began his office, Raisi known as “henchman of 1988,” was a much-hated figure among Iranians for his key role as a member of the Death Commission in the 1988 massacre of nearly 30,000 political prisoners, 90% of them members of Iran’s main opposition, the Mojahedin-e Khalq, the MEK.
Iran’s people have not succumbed to the barbaric crackdown of peaceful protests by teachers, workers, pensioners, and other social sectors during Raisi’s tenure.
On the contrary, they have become more energized in their demands beyond mere economic and work-related slogans, seeking the regime’s downfall.
In short, Khamenei’s strategy of using Raisi as the bogyman has miserably backfired as Iran protests are getting ever closer to achieving their goal, regime change for freedom and democracy!