I said I couldn't stay there and that I had to return to my family because I was responsible for them. They refused and replied that "No, you have come here and the struggle is a one-way highway. It only has a back road that leads to 8-year Abu Ghraib imprisonment." This is exactly what they said. I asked why I should go to prison for 8 years and they said: "You have entered Iraq illegally and Iraq constitution says that punishment for illegal entrance to the country is 8 years in Abu Ghriab."
My name is Hamid Reza chamani. Late in 1999, I went to Turkey to find a job because of financial problems I had in Iran and because I had heard that I could find a job there in Turkey. During the first days of my stay in Turkey, a man from the city of Isfahan, who introduced himself as "Bizhan", approached me and said that he had been working with hypocrites (Mojahedin themselves said Mojahedin, but the word "hypocrites" deserves them). He was lying. He said that MKO's salary for married people is 3000 dollars a month and for singles, 2000 dollars a month. Since I had not a good financial situation, I thought it was a miracle. With so much insistence, we were smuggled to Iraq after a month. First, we were in the hands of Baath and Estekhbarat forces. I was in an Iraqi prison for 11 days, which was really bad. After that, two or three people from the MKO came and took me to their hotel in Baghdad. I was there for two weeks during which they asked me some questions and I signed some papers. Then, they checked my properties and they said they were doing counterintelligence checks to make sure I was not from the Iranian Intelligence Ministry. After two weeks, I was transferred to Camp Ashraf in Toyota the windows of which had been blurred so that we couldn't learn the way towards Ashraf. I had gone to Iraq with a friend of mine. They separated us from each other and said that we should have no contact with each other. I asked why and they said it was for our own benefits. Then, we entered Reception Section. They said they would give us 3000 dollars a month as salary, and that after 3 moths of trainings in Iraq we would be sent to glorious safe houses, there would be modern cars and … After a month or two, I wrote a letter to Fereshteh Shoja and La'ya Khiabani (sister of Mosa Khiabani) and said that "my wife has problems and I have two kids. I was said I would receive money and I want to know how my family can get that?" They asked what money. "You said you would give salary to me," I replied.
"Here, we run the army with social-financial activities of members in foreign countries."
"This is your problem," I said. "I am responsible for my family and I should find a way to resolve their financial problems. My kids go to school and they have problems."
They laughed at me and said that there would be no money and that I had to divorce my wife and not think about my kids anymore! It was the so-called "ideological revolution" of that bastard Maryam.
I had no way. I said I couldn't stay there and that I had to return to my family because I was responsible for them. They refused and replied that "No, you have come here and the struggle is a one-way highway. It only has a back road that leads to 8-year Abu Ghraib imprisonment." This is exactly what they said. I asked why I should go to prison for 8 years and they said: "You have entered Iraq illegally and Iraq constitution says that punishment for illegal entrance to the country is 8 years in Abu Ghriab."
"You took me here. I didn't come here by myself," I protested. They said it was my problem and I had to solve it anyway. I had experienced Iraq prisons and it was horrible. They put 10 to 12 people in a 3x4 cell and the level of health measures and relief was so low. I was frightened and I had no way except accepting what they said. After 10 to 11 months in Reception Section, we were sent to Basra, Camp Seven called "Habib". It was close to the border. I was there with some of my friends, one of whom was Hussein Nedayee (called Hamid in the organization) who was killed in the borders of Basra. Hamid said he would commit suicide if he failed to go to Iran until June 20 of 2001. Ali Baratlou and I decided to wear plain clothes under our uniforms and escape with a car. A man among us disclosed our plan and Baratlou was later transferred to Camp Eleven. I had no friends there anymore and the organization didn't take me to the borders. Then, they held meetings for five months, run by Massoud and Maryam Rajavi. Since the members had raised questions, they held meetings to calm them.
I was in conflict with the organization. I criticized their slogans and they asked: "Do you stand against the organization"? "I don't stand against the organization but these are your own words. I'm asking you what you have said yourself," I replied.
Believe it or not, we had to work for two weeks, day and night, to decorate football matches in the camp to show the youths in Iran that the MKO was a happy and active place. But I wish you had come to the camp to see the reality. If you criticized an official, they didn't say anything directly but they held meetings in which the person was insulted for the way he thought. They insulted with the ugliest words.
For instance, one was said to do something; he had done it unwillingly. In the meetings, the person revealed that he had obeyed the order unwillingly. Suddenly 100 other members attacked him with ugliest words and accused him of being no help to the organization. With this behavior, the person didn't dare to even think against what he had been ordered. You should obey the orders unquestionably in the MKO. When you criticize them, you'd be accused of standing against Massoud Rajavi; "You stand against the organization? You don't obey the orders of Brother Massoud? …."
Once I criticized Aziz Ibrahim and Mehrdad Soltani, two commanders of mine in the MKO who have committed many crimes. I said to them that I would go to Iran but I would revenge on them someday. He asked if I was standing against the organization. "Either you or the organization…," I said.
"Do you know that you have to kill convicts?"
"I wish to look at your face someday through the sniper gun," I replied.
For this, they decided to keep me no more in the organization. They said they had to expel me. They knew we had planned to escape from the camp in 2003.
I can't believe I'm here. I was 18 months in US-run camp and I wished to eat Iranian rice or egg.
I couldn't digest Americans' foods but I preferred it to the MKO's camp. I left the MKO nearly 20 months ago. My friends will come with other groups. Some of them were 17-18 years in the organization.
One of them is Yunes Suleimani, an old man who loves his family. Fahimeh Arvani, who flirted for the members to deceive them with the ideas of the MKO, was one of the torturers of Yunes. I heard that Hamid Yusefi who was in Camp 5 has been transferred to Camp 7. They tortured their own members, who worked for the organization.
I can't tell my feelings about being here in my own country but I have to admit that I'm ashamed of what I did. I'm ashamed before the Supreme Leader. Intelligence Ministry was horrible in our minds. They said the Intelligence Ministry will kill us as soon as we get to Iran. We are ashamed of this behavior of the staff of ministry; we were received warmly by them. I hope I could do something for the country and I hope we could stand against the MKO itself.
To read "MEK and Human Smuggling", please click <1>here<1>.
Joseph Lieberman, long regarded as the “Republicans’ favorite Democrat” because of his militarist foreign affairs agenda and support for a number of right-wing domestic policies, represented Connecticut initially as a...
Representing families of Iranian victims of terrorism, Habilian Association organized a conference themed “Iran victim of terrorism; From MEK to ISIS” on the occasion of national day of combating terrorism...
Dr. Raz Zimmt investigates Iranian social media responses to the annual conference of Mojahedin-e Khalq, an Iranian opposition group whose support for Iraq during the Iran-Iraq War remains a searing...