Michael Ware meets with high-level representatives of the MEK, a group that wants to overthrow the Iranian government.
Michael Ware, an Australian journalist from National Geographic, investigated the Mujahedin-e Khalq that he met during the Iraq War. He describes MEK as “the living epitome of the enemy of my enemy is my friend.”
He met them in Iraq back in 2005 when he was a war correspondent. After the American invasion of Iraq, he went to the Camp Ashraf, the MEK’s headquarters, and shot a footage. There he interviewed some female members of the group and now after more than a decade he’s “chasing down the story of who and what the MEK is now. How many of the MEK are left? Where are they and who is supporting them today?” He adds that he also wants to find the girls he met back in 2005 at Camp Ashraf.
He started his journey from Paris, “chasing an Iranian spy ring across Western Europe.” He has tried a lot to “get in touch with someone, anyone inside the group who will talk” to him. After 6 days, he could finally arrange a meeting with Shahin Ghobadi, an MEK spokesman, and found his way into the MEK headquarters. He sat with MEK’s high-level representatives, Mohammad Mohaddesin, Shahin Ghobadi, Farzin Hashemi and Sarvenaz Chitsaz.
His main question from the MEK representatives was about the method they want to use to overthrow Iranian government. But they did not reveal too much and they’ve gone “a long way around to not answering my question.”
He asked for a meeting with the girls he met at Camp Ashraf and they said they are in Germany.
“A look I catch here or there lets me know they are still ready to fight for the revolution,” he concluded.
Ware and his crew flew to Berlin, hoping to meet with the girls. Shahin Ghobadi joined them in Berlin and took them to a symbolic hunger strike, which was “part of a broader MEK propaganda war to gain both new recruits and support for their cause.”
He believed that Germany was a diversion and the girls were not there.
Although the MEK had warned them, if they went to Albania, they’d be on their own, they set off for Albania, where some 3000 MEK members are settled.
They went to the MEK camp, outside Tirana. Surprisingly, Shahin Ghobadi followed them to Albania, “to make sure things go smoothly here in Albania.” There, he was only allowed to “see what Shahin wanted” him to see. “He opened one door and shut another.”
He finally met with two of the girls and sat with them, hearing their story.
In the end, Michael Ware said that certainly the MEK is “still very much devoted to its cause” and they will happily give their lives.