The anniversary of the February 1979 Revolution and the deepening crisis of the ruling theocratic regime!

(Extracts from the Editorial of Nameh Mardom, issue no. 1175, published Monday 13 February 2023)

Amidst increasing uncertainties and instabilities over the future of their regime, the leadership of the Islamic Republic of Iran, led by Ayatollah Ali Khamenei held a celebration for the “Victory of the Islamic Revolution” on the occasion of the 44th anniversary of the popular anti-dictatorship 1979 Revolution.  Saturday 11 February was the anniversary of the great popular revolution, which was tragically brought to a catastrophic end under the cleric-led regime.  However, over four decades on from that day, the leaders of the “regime” now fully recognise that the internal and external factors that will determine the course of key future developments [in Iran] not only will not guarantee the continuation of their theocratic dictatorship, that is based on the absolute rule of the Supreme Leader, but will from hereon face the growing challenge of controlling the increasing threat posed by the people’s constant protests.

A large swathe of Iranian society has now completely and permanently rejected the ideology of “Political Islam” as the [ideological] foundation for state governance, thus forcing the Supreme Leader into a defensive stance.

On 10 February, to coincide with the Revolution’s anniversary, the right-wing opposition forces that have gathered around Reza Pahlavi [the son of the deposed shah] – which are attempting to attract the support of certain forces in Western countries and governments, in order to revive the failed project of “setting up an alternative regime” – held a media event at Georgetown University in Washington.  Under the banner of “No to the Islamic Republic”, they essentially aim to negate the anti-dictatorial February 1979 Revolution and its popular goals – i.e., independence, freedom, and social justice for the people of Iran.  They attempted to rally behind Reza Pahlavi and some [high-profile] media personalities so as to legitimise their “alternative regime”.

The fact is that our country has entered new conditions and the mentality of the society has transformed [following the recent events].  Therefore, these baseless, desperate, and “showy” efforts, by [either] government figures or the fake opposition reliant on their western sponsors, will simply not work to gain the [Iranian] people’s trust in this day and age.

Another fact is that, on the one hand, over the last four decades the reactionary theocratic regime has successfully and deliberately reversed the 1979 Revolution – obstructing the path of fundamental political and socio-economic transformations, and brutally suppressing the left and progressive forces.  On the other hand, the destructive fake “opposition”, reliant upon the support of imperialist circles with its vast financial and media resources, is currently able to disrupt and sabotage the formation of a progressive anti-dictatorship front by rewriting history and perpetuating misinformation about Iran’s leftist and progressive forces.  Both make the same baseless and false accusations – de rigueur under the Pahlavi and the theocratic regimes – to sideline the left and progressive forces, and thus pave the way for foreign interference and weaken Iran’s national sovereignty.

Furthermore, considering the experiences of both the huge protest movement of 2009 against the electoral coup [Green Movement] and the current protest uprisings under the slogan “Woman, Life, Freedom”, a recent statement by Mir-Hossein Mousavi [the leader of the 2009 Green Movement, who has been under house arrest for over a decade now] emphasises the importance of a precise and practical integration of the ongoing struggle for freedom and social justice in Iran.  [Mousavi was the undisputed winner of the Presidential election in June 2009, but the theocratic leadership declared his opponent, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, as the winner].  His perspective, contrary to the illusions presented by sections of the “opposition”, is predicated on the reality that the actual field of struggle to bring about fundamental changes is inside Iran, within the people – and not outside the country relying on media theatricals and the support of [imperialist forces] to create a pro-Western and undemocratic “alternative regime”.

Based on over 80 years of practical experience of the struggle against [successive] dictatorial regimes, and based upon a concrete analysis of the current prevailing conditions in the country, the Tudeh Party of Iran believes that in order to effectively resolve what Mir-Hossein Mousavi refers to as “ambiguities” in his message, the leftist and progressive national forces are undoubtedly equipped with the theoretical and practical capacities to do what it takes [to facilitate the transition from theocratic dictatorship to the national democratic stage].

Our Party does not claim that it has ready-made answers for all aspects of this challenging struggle.  However, our “road map for fundamental and democratic transformations at the national level” as well as “a freedom charter for the unity of action and Iran’s freedom “, the documents approved by the 7th Congress of our Party, held in June 2022, are examples of our commitment in the direction of combative/militant cooperation with other leftist and progressive political forces as well as our accountability and our responsible approach/stance with regards to Iran’s vital needs in the current fraught and highly sensitive situation.

The Tudeh Party of Iran remains ready and sincerely willing to enter into dialogue and joint action with other leftist and progressive national forces in this endeavour.

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