Friday, April 15, 2005
Right before the parliamentary elections in Iran, the hardcore radical clerics who are the de facto rulers of Iran banned numerous reformist candidates from running for a parliament seat. The result was that the vast majority of Iranians stayed home on elections and eventually handed the mullahs a landslide victory for their candidates.
The very low turnout was an indication of how the Iranian people lost hope in any political participation that might cause drastic changes in the theocracy. The reality is crude: even if Thomas Jefferson himself became the president of Iran, he will still be powerless because all the country's resources are in the hands of the radical mullahs.
Now Iran will have its presidential elections this June 17. There are calls from prominent internal and external opposition figures to boycott these elections as well. However, there is a very important new development this time. The opposition wants to change the election day into an opportunity to ask for a referendum on whether Iranians want the Islamic Republic or not. Encouraged by colorful revolutions in Ukraine, Georgia, Kyrgyzstan and Lebanon, it appears that this idea got support from different factions of the opposition and most notably from the student movement.
Now, don't expect the Iranian regime to tell its people "OK folks, bring in the international observers and let us have a referendum". No, they will unleash their demons to crack down on any protest and they will definitely use live ammunition if things slipped from their grip.
I just hope that the call for referendum will shift to a call for the ruling clerics to step down from power. I also hope that the Iranian people will break the barrier of fear of the Mollahs and of staring "yet another revolution" and heed to this call for a referendum. It would be very interesting to follow the event in Iran these coming days. Who knows, may be June 17 will be revolution day!
* I encourage you to bookmark this blog and visit it daily. It has excellent daily briefing on Iran related stuff.