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Statement on Egypt with an Eye on Iran: Mousavi's First Warning About "Fall of Regime"

By Mohammad Reza Yazdanpanah, Rooz Online

In his latest statement, Mir-Hossein Mousavi, the leader of Iran's protest movement, commonly known as the Green Movement, commented on the uprising of the Egyptian people and said, "If the government respected the sovereignty of the people in determining its fate and had not stolen the Egyptian elections a few months earlier, things would not have come to the point where the protestors were calling for the fall of the regime." Journalist Rouzbeh Ebrahimi from New York interpreted Mousavi's remark to be directed at Iranian leaders, even though he used Egypt as his example. In fact, this is the very first time that Mousavi has used the term "fall of the regime" in his statement.

Photo: Massive protest rally by opposition in central Tehran on June 15, 2009

Mousavi's statement which was initially published on Kalameh website (his official website) reads, "The interests behind the ideology ruling the country (i.e., Iran) do not allow realities to be presented. The loudspeakers and spokespersons of the leaders do not pay attention to the corrupt and dictatorial actions of the Egyptian pharaoh which has created this explosive situation in Egypt through arrests, interrogations, fabrication of cases, and the plundering of people through gangs and associates."

Mousavi says that while Iranian leaders talk of the wrath of the Egyptian people, they do not talk about the acts that have caused this anger, such as corruption at the highest level of government, plundering of the national wealth, the shutting of mouths and breakings of pens, executions, executions and more executions.

Mir-Ebrahimi openly writes that Mousavi's statement is a warning to the rulers of the Islamic republic in that if they do not heed and listen to people's calls, they will one day face the same outcome as the rulers of Egypt. The writer says Mousavi cleverly used a regional event to issue his warning to Iranian leaders.

Events that have been unfolding in Egypt are not new to Iranians. Street protests, plainclothes agents violence against peace protests, arrests etc took place on a wide scale in Iran throughout last year.

In his statement Mousavi says that Pharaohs heard the calls of the Egyptian people too late. His statement about what is going on in Egypt is like an allegory which could easily be applied to Iran which has been in political crisis since June 2009 presidential elections whose official results have remained widely disputed by millions of Iranians.

But has Mousavi given up on expecting change from the leaders of Iran? Mir Ebrahimi answers in the negative. "Someone in Mousavi's shoes should not shut all the doors because the cost of a revolutionary act in Iran is less than that of accepting fundamental changes by the leaders.

But Mousavi also makes a direct reference to Iranian events in the statement and says that the beginnings of the riots and protests in Tunisia, Sana'a, Cairo and Alexandria lie in the massive protests of Tehran and other Iranian cities in 2009 and 2010. "They began by asking 'Where is my vote' in Iran, and continued with calling for the downfall of their presidents," the statement reads. He even compares the fraudulent elections in Egypt and in Iran and says that civil institutions in all of these regional countries are suppressed by rulers, as are the means of their communications with each other.

Mir Ebrahimi notes that even if the events in the Arab world have sprung because of events in Iran, they all use the same methods to communicate, protest and express their demands.

Mousavi ends his statement by predicting "big events" for the region which would impact the nations of the regions and the world.

Related Article: Green Pharaons New Names for Mousavi and Karoubi - Immediately after Mir-Hossein Mousavi published his statement on the developments in the Middle East, pro-Mahmoud Ahmadinejad news sites in Iran responded with verbal attacks and viewed it as acknowledgement of the accusations that the principlists (a group supporting Ahmadinejad) have leveled against the leaders of the Green Movement in Iran, which one news site called "the green Pharaohs."


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