‘People are seeking overthrow of entire regime’

By Art Moore

hackers taking control of monitors at Mashhad Airport in northeast Iran, displaying messages in support of the protests.
Hackers took control of monitors at Mashhad Airport in northeast Iran, displaying messages in support of a movement to overthrow the mullah-led regime.

Members of a growing grass-roots movement in Iran seeking to overthrow the mullah-led Islamic regime are emboldened by new sanctions imposed this week by the United States on top of the canceling of the nuclear agreement.

The evidence can be seen in Twitter posts by Iranians with the hash tag #FreeIran2018, which declare support for the U.S. move Wednesday and report bold acts of civil disobedience and major protests intended ultimately to foster revolution.

Javad Hamida‏ wrote Wednesday: “I am an Iranian, And I welcome the sanctions against the tortuous and oppressive organs of the Iranian people, By the US government.”

Maryam Rajavi,‏ the leader of the People’s Mujahedin of Iran, an organization trying to overthrow the government, and the president-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, wrote that the “mullahs’ religious fascism in #Iran is fleeting, devoid of any future. The people of Iran are seeking the overthrow of the entire Velayat-e Faqih regime,” referring to the Islamic government.

Thursday night in the town of Zarrin-Shahr, a city of 56,000 in central Iran, “young supporters of a free Iran” set fire to a picture on a sidewalk of Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Khamenei.

The man who shot video of the act, which was distributed via Twitter, can be heard saying, according to an English translation: “Dictator, say hello to your end.”

At Iran’s second busiest airport, hackers took over video monitors to display messages supporting the revolt.

M. Hanif Jazayeri‏ posted a video Thursday marking the 10th day of a nationwide strike by truck drivers, noting they are “refusing to deliver loads as #IranProtests persist.”

“Workers are often not paid for months. They now realize there’s more to be gained by striking, he said.

Rajavi‏ wrote that the truck drivers strike “is an example of the Iranian people’s will to do away with the mullahs’ corrupt tyranny and achieve freedom and popular sovereignty.”

Jazayeri noted oil tanker truck drivers in Isfahan have joined the strike. He said the continued protests by energy-sector workers “could be a mortal blow to the already failing economy.”

“Iranians are prepared to pay the price to end mullahs’ rule,” he wrote.

The National Council of Resistance of Iran — which describes itself as “a broad coalition of democratic Iranian organizations, groups, and personalities” founded in 1981 in Tehran — is promoting an annual international gathering of Iranians scheduled for June 30 in Paris.

“This year’s gathering will be held circumstances of unceasing nationwide protests and uprising of the people from all walks of life and all segments of society against the religious tyranny ruling Iran and demanding regime change,” the council said.

“This gathering will express solidarity with the Iranian people’s long quest for freedom and democracy, and support for the democratic alternative to the current dictatorship in Iran.”

‘How much longer?’

Jazayeri‏ wrote that it’s been nearly 40 years since the mullahs took over Iran, and still people “don’t have basic services.”

“This is what tap water looks like in the port city of Mahshahr. In 2018 not a day has gone by without #IranProtests somewhere in the country. #FreeIran2018.”

Jazayeri‏ also posted video of hackers taking control of monitors at Mashhad Airport in northeast Iran, displaying messages in support of the protests.

The signs reads “How much longer?” and carry the Farsi hashtag calling for nationwide protests.

One tweet spotlighted the systematic oppression of other religions: “Yusuf Nader Khvani and three other Iranian Christians were sentenced to 10 years in prison for being Christian!”

U.S. ‘stands with the people of Iran’

When the U.S. announced the new sanctions Wednesday, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin declared America “stands with the people of Iran, and Treasury is taking action to hold the Iranian regime accountable for ongoing human rights abuses, censorship, and other despicable acts it commits against its own citizens.”

Mnuchin said Iran “not only exports terrorism and instability across the world, it routinely violates the rights of its own people.”

“The Iranian regime diverts national resources that should belong to the people to fund a massive and expensive censorship apparatus and suppress free speech,” he said.

Last week, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo pointed out Iran used sanctions relief from the 2015 nuclear deal to export terrorism.

He urged the Iranian people to consider that their Islamic leaders are responsible for the economic hardships they are suffering.

“Rouhani and Zarif are your elected leaders. Are they not the most responsible for your economic struggles? Are these two not responsible for wasting Iranian lives throughout the Middle East?” he said.

Instead of helping their own citizens, Pompeo said, the regime “continues to seek a corridor stretching from Iran’s borders to the shores of the Mediterranean.”

Former President Barack Obama was criticized for not supporting the 2009 Iranian Green Protest Movement. Israeli Deputy Minister Michael Oren charged in January that Obama didn’t support the revolution a decade ago because he hoped to reach a deal with Iran on its nuclear weapons, which he signed six years later.

Former Soviet dissident Natan Sharansky called it the biggest failure to help human rights in modern history.

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