By Akbar Ganji (source: Rooz Online)
After a turbulent 20 months, Mir-Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karoubi have finally been incarcerated. But their incarceration is of a type worse than a regular prison. They have been locked up the way other senior clerics such as ayatollah Shariatmadari, ayatollah Rowhani, ayatollah Ghomi and ayatollah Montazeri were locked up in the past. Their incarceration comes without any court or trial or even a sentence. Some of the ayatollahs who faced the same treatment died under house arrest. The deterioration of his health and the growing pressure were what freed ayatollah Montazeri from house arrest during the last days of his life.
Now is not the time to talk of those who accepted those cruelties. Anyone who was aware of this viciousness and remained silent is an accomplice in that repression, in the form of being a moral accomplice. Those who actually “went along” with these actions have in fact played an active role in them and thus are legally accountable. Being a moral accessory to this oppression, by virtue of remaining silent, calls for at least an expression of regret. So, on my behalf, I express my own regret for remaining silent during the incarceration of ayatollah Shariatmadari, ayatollah Rowhani and ayatollah Ghomi.
The reasons for the incarceration of Mousavi and Karoubi are obvious. Those in power want to silence the voices of protest. During the last 21 months, hundreds have been arrested so that the opponents of those in power cannot turn the extensive and deep dissatisfaction of the nation into a political protest, a political movement. By incarcerating Mousavi and Karoubi, they are trying to separate the connection between the body and the head. After implementing the “sedition” plan and “awareness” plan, sultan Ali Khamenei seems to have come to the conclusion that all the agencies of the Islamic regime have now come to accept that the protest movement was in fact a “sedition.” So now, he thinks, the time has come to arrest the “heads of the sedition.” The confident and arrogant sultan believes that without the head and the connecting links, the body would melt like snow under the sunshine of suppression, and disappear from earth. But dictators are always misled. One reason for this is that they become incessantly arrogant and conceited. Sultan Ali Khamenei takes pride in believing that he has silenced the protests of the “sedition.” He does not want to believe that millions of dissatisfied people can turn into political protestors with any available opportunity. And fortunately because of their nature, religious-sultan regimes constantly create such opportunities. Nobody can predict the next one. It is just possible that when the next such opportunity arises, the gathered protests and anger will create such a protest that everything will be washed away. Ali Khamenei is busy building the massive “revolutionary activists”. But that is something I do not want to write about at this time.
The subject of my writing is “silence” and “moral accountability.” Anybody who remains silent to the incarceration of Mousavi and Karoubi is morally accountable and is thus viewed to be an accomplice in the imprisonment of the two. This silence must be confronted and opposed. Writing articles or issuing statements are the least one can do. Where are those who chanted they would raise blood etc if Mousavi and Karoubi were arrested? Perhaps in the current violently suppressive situation there is no room for collective protests inside Iran, in other words those living outside Iran cannot expect or demand that those inside the country engage in something like this and put their life at risk, but those outside Iran who live in free societies and incur no costs should and must demonstrate their protests by participating and organizing large protests all over the world.
If the Greens carry differences among themselves, they have absolutely no differences about the role of Mousavi and Karoubi in this movement. Right now, nobody else their position and stature among the Greens. Greens residing outside Iran must fulfill their moral obligations by demanding the end of the incarceration of these two and thus demonstrate their commitment. Just as the Iranian revolution is not identifiable without ayatollah Khomeini, the Green Movement too cannot be recognized and understood without Mousavi and Karoubi. Today we must show that we are Green by turning the streets into green to achieve the freedoms of the movement.
... Payvand News - 02/28/11 ... --