after the MKO announced military phase in 1981, people had an active role in exposing MKO members’ safe houses. People came to the scene because the MKO opposed their goals and the MKO was forced to leave the country since it was not able to stay in the scene. After leaving the country, they resorted to superpowers in order to survive and did their best to their green light. For instance, in Saddam’s war against Iran they fought their compatriots alongside Iraqi soldiers
I’m Javad Hassanzadeh
After Islamic revolution (in 1979) I was recruited by Monafeqin (MKO) and started political activities in students association. I went on with these activities until July 1981 when I was arrested and sentenced to 15 years in prison. In 1991, Iran’s supreme leader issued a public pardon and I was released from prison. I want to discuss a number of issues here. At first, since I was the brother of a martyr* I thought that I can find my goals and ideals in the MKO. With this background, and regarding that my elder brother was and is one of MKO activists, I joined the MKO and started activities. One of the most controversial issues about the MKO is its popularity and its social position and that whether people support its goals. Basically, the only movements that can have popular support are those which conform with people’s views and goals. Well, after the revolution, Iranians found their leader and followed him. But MKO’s stances against Imam [Khomeini]’s leadership became bolder and bolder. As they distanced themselves from leadership and his views, the gap between people and them became wider and wider. At first, when the opposition was not that serious, they could talk among people and even put their emblem beside the pictures of the leader, but in practice, they opposed the leader. They stood against the leader and in fact they stood against people and we saw that after the MKO announced military phase in 1981, people had an active role in exposing MKO members’ safe houses. People came to the scene because the MKO opposed their goals and the MKO was forced to leave the country since it was not able to stay in the scene.
After leaving the country, they resorted to superpowers in order to survive and did their best to their green light. For instance, in Saddam’s war against Iran they fought their compatriots alongside Iraqi soldiers. This refers exactly to what I mentioned earlier: being far from people, leader and the Iranian society and when they felt being isolated, they did what they could to save themselves. What was not important for them anymore was their “goals”. What were the reasons for establishing this organization? What were the purposes? All these had been forgotten. They forgot what they used to say during 1979, 1980 and 1981. They did what they could to guarantee their survival and to prove themselves abroad. With their beautiful slogans, they were able to take some people out with themselves. Also, some others left the country later and joined them but they later they found that this is not the MKO of 1970s. This is not the organization they expected. At this point, they felt to have been entangled in a deadlock and decided to leave. When MKO leaders face such amount of defections they reacted harshly. MKO claims of freedom, democracy, liberty and human rights and says that members are free to go if they do not like it here. However, when someone understands that he has been deceived and decides to return (to have at least a normal life beside his compatriots), he would be insulted and tortured and unfortunately, it’s a shame for me to say that my brother (Hassan Hassanzadeh) is one of those torturers. I should say that I, as the brother of a martyr and as a person who’s been active in the process of revolution and has experienced prison, this is neither acceptable nor justifiable. Well, when someone doesn’t want to work, a “quitter” or whatever you call it, then it’s not justifiable to torture him or imprison him in Abu Ghraib. You always cried that there are prisons and tortures in Islamic Republic and maneuvered on such cases, but now you resort to prisons and torture to prevent members from leaving! This is not acceptable. I was in prison for a long time and I can say that, despite all the controversies they (MKO) made about prisons in Iran, there were not such things in the prison of Mashhad.
* Martyr Reza Hassanzadeh was killed by Shah agents during the Islamic Revolution.
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