Useless Iranian Conferences Abroad
Persian Version متن فارسی
In the last 20 years, a series of conferences have been convened abroad with the
stated goal of unity of Iran's opposition, and without
much impact on Iranian movement. These gatherings neither have theoretical value
for Iran's political and civil rights movement nor do they have any practical
value abroad or inside Iran. And more importantly, a false view of the reality
of opposition abroad is conveyed to Iran.
Before the inception of the Islamic Republic of Iran, the bulk of Iranians abroad were students who did not have much knowledge of Iran's political situation before leaving Iran and were influenced by the revelations about Iran provided by political exiles and diaspora and thus they created the powerful organization of Confederation of Iranian Students abroad (1).
But in the last 30 years, Iranians abroad have been comprised of immigrants who know about the realities of inside Iran more than the exiles themselves, and this is actually why they have left Iran. So for them, elucidation about the actions of Islamic Republic is repeating the obvious. With the exception of a few who have left Iran because of political reasons or to save their life, the majority of immigrants have come abroad to make a better life for themselves and their family, not to join the opposition and participate in political activities.
And the image that all Iranian immigrants are people like the billionaire founder of eBay is far from reality. Life abroad is not paradise. For example, living in the United States, my family and I have not had health insurance in the last 8 years. It is better not to send a wrong image of the life abroad to Iran.
The Iranian immigrants abroad deal with many difficulties in their day to day lives in the areas of jobs, immigration, health insurance and education for their children. There are people who are now disappointed with their situation and think if they had remained in Iran they would not have to face these difficulties and perhaps could better help the development of political and civil rights movement in Iran.
Giving a false image of the reality abroad will not do any service to Iranians inside Iran and especially when some people in Iran rely on such misconceptions to leave Iran and end up confused when they see that they can do less for political and civil rights movement of Iran while living abroad.
Organizing the bulk of Iranian immigrants for fruitful presence in political activities and to help formation of a united opposition requires paying attention to the real needs of the Iranian immigrants. Any organization that cannot attend to these issues will not be able to get the attention of Iranians abroad let alone to organize them to provide any help to the political and civil rights movement inside Iran.
Sam Ghandchi, Editor/Publisher
November 23, 2012