Washington, DC, March 25, 2022 – Distinguished policy and national security experts called for maintaining Iran’s IRGC on the list of Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) of the U.S. Department of State, argued for no sanctions relief, and highlighted the prospects for change in Iran, during a conference organized by the U.S. Representative Office of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI-US). The speakers included several cabinet members, undersecretaries, assistant secretaries, U.S. military generals, academics and scientists, and experts from various think tanks including the Heritage Foundation, the Atlantic Council, the Stimson Center, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, National Institute for Public Policy, JINSA and INSA.
The NCRI-US conference held on March 25, 2022, coincided with the ancient Iranian new year, Nowruz. Mr. Alireza Jafarzadeh, the Deputy Director of the Washington office of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI-US), moderated the conference.
Transcript of the Opening Remarks by Mr. Alireza Jafarzadeh
Hello everyone, Happy Nowruz and thank you for joining us at the National Council of Resistance of Iran, U.S. Representative Office.
My name is Alireza Jafarzadeh, and I am the deputy director of the NCRI’s Washington office. We are delighted to host this event coinciding with the Iranian New Year, Nowruz.
That is why next to me, we have a traditional Haft Seen table, which symbolizes life, rebirth, health, strength, and sunrise. And that is what we are looking for, the sunrise of Freedom in the new Iranian Year. Let’s hope for it, and let’s work to make that happen.
Now, before I get to our speakers, let me remind everyone that our conference is broadcast live on our website, ncrius.org; and on all our social media platforms, including Twitter, Facebook and Youtube.
Today, we intend to discuss the state of the Iranian regime, its weaknesses, and vulnerabilities, the state of protests, and the desire of the Iranian people for change. We will look at the behavior of the Iranian regime to include its nuclear weapons program, its missile and UAV program, its support for proxy terror groups, its role in supporting the invasion of Ukraine by siding with the unjust war there. And finally, what the U.S. policy should be in countering all of these problems, but also in helping the people of Iran to achieve freedom, the same way that the people of Ukraine are fighting for their freedom from occupation, invasion, and bombings.
Needless to say that U.S. Congress has played a significant role so far, and key Democratic and Republican voices are pushing for a firm and decisive policy regarding Iran and we are grateful for them.
We have seen Senators Bob Menendez, Ben Cardin, Jim Risch, and Ted Cruz expressing serious concerns about US policy on Iran. Equally, there are bi-partisan voices on the House side.
To address all of that we have impressive and distinguished guest speakers today that I will briefly introduce on alphabetical order, and they are:
• Amb. Lincoln Bloomfield, Jr., former U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Political-Military Affairs;
• Dr. Steven Bucci, visiting fellow at The Heritage Foundation
• Amb. Joseph DeTrani, former Special Adviser to the Director of National Intelligence
• Amb. Paula Dobriansky, former Under Secretary of State for Global Affairs
• Amb. Robert G. Joseph, former Undersecretary of State for Arms Control & International Security
• Hon. Michael Mukasey, 81st Attorney General of the United States
• Dr. Behzad Raofi, Chief Validation Engineer for Space Missions
• Amb. Mitchell Reiss, former Director of Policy Planning at the State Department
• Mr. Jonathan Ruhe, JINSA Director of Foreign Policy
• Ms. Soona Samsami, U.S. Representative, National Council of Resistance of Iran
• Hon. David Shedd, former Acting Director, Defense Intelligence Agency
• Dr. Siamack Shojai, Professor of Business, William Paterson University
• Hon. Robert G. Torricelli, former Democratic Senator from New Jersey and
• General (ret.) Chuck F. Wald, former Deputy Commander of United States European Command
And I have the honor of moderating the conference today. I also want to thank the very large participation of Iranian Americans from all over the United States, from nearly 45 states, who are joining us on ZOOM now.
Thank you so much.