Sam Ghandchiسام قندچي Badmouthing Iranian Activists


بد گوئی درباره فعالین ایرانی


It is understandable if Islamic Republic of Iran (IRI), and its agents, badmouth Iranian activists and make rumors about them.  We know the kind of rumors IRI made for Foruhars, Saidi Sirjani, and other Iranian activists, before they were murdered by IRI.  And direct IRI badmouthing from Islamic Republic Newspaper, or Kayhan of Tehran, in the eyes of Iranian people, is only credit for the attacked activists.


In the beginning, IRI used to announce, that they have found Playboy magazine in the house of some activists, to discredit them.  As time passed,  Iranian people saw how much IRI interferes in personal life of every individual, whether political activist or not.  Thus it has been a long time that people's response to such personal rumors, has been that people's personal life is none of anybody's business. 


And IRI is changing tactics and is accusing activists of being its own agents, because IRI has found out that the worst discredit among Iranians today is to think of someone as part of IRI machinery, and so creating confusion about activists, has become a routine work of Vevak in recent years.


We also know about similar rumors mill that was operated by Shah's Savak, to destroy the credibility of Iranian opposition figures, during the regime of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. 


However, when the opposition itself makes such rumors, about other members of Iranian opposition, one wonders if those who make such rumors are aware of what they are doing.  What are they trying to achieve by undermining other opposition activists through personal attacks?


Two examples are personally accusing Heshmat Tabarzadi of being with intelligence ministry of IRI, and personally accusing Shirin Ebadi of being an IRI agent.  These are big accusations against a political or a human rights activist. 


Those who make such accusations should either provide real proof to support their claims, or should apologize to these activists, and to the opposition, for creating confusion about those who are putting their life on line to fight the despotic regime and for democracy in Iran.


Having political differences is fine and anybody can and should speak about their political differences, and this is the way the Iranian pro-democracy movement can grow in its perspectives, and be strengthened.  But badmouthing and personal attacks have been and still are the methods of Savak and Vevak to destroy the opposition personalities, and no matter what ideology and politics anyone has, one should condemn such practices, whether it is done by fake aliases on the Internet, or in gossip centers at the back of conference rooms.


I think all members of Iranian opposition should stand up to the badmouthing and personal attacks in no uncertain terms, no matter from whom and against who these ill methods of micro politics are used.  Badmouthing only kills our strength in our struggle for a secular republic in Iran. 


Let's tell those who spend their time on badmouthing, that if they have ideas for the growth of Iran's pro-democracy movement, to use the available tools of Internet and other communication channels to provide their political vision to guide the movement, rather than wasting the energy of themselves and others.


Hoping for a democratic and secular futurist republic in Iran,

Sam Ghandchi, Editor/Publisher

January 14, 2004



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