By Mahmoud Hakamian
In February 1979 Ruhollah Khomeini returned to Iran, shortly after the Shah’s dictatorship had been overthrown by Iranians who had fought bitterly for a new democratic Iran.
However, Khomeini did nothing of the sort during his ten years in power; instead focusing on murdering his opponents on mass, continuing the Iran-Iraq war far past its natural end, and setting up the Iranian Regime’s links with terrorist groups that last to this day. In short, he betrayed everything that the Iranian people had fought for during the revolution.
During his 1979–1989 reign as Supreme Leader, Khomeini killed 120,000 political opponents, including 30,000 political prisoners in the summer of 1988, with most victims given little chance to defend themselves.
He claimed to be God’s representative on earth so that he could justify his position of power, ruling as a political and religious leader, even warping the Shiite religion into an ideology that legitimised his power and issuing all of his order in the name of “Islam”.
He knew that the people would not accept this without a fight, so Khomeini went after his opponents in order to make the people think they had no other choice. He murdered political rivals, imprisoned journalists, and even outlawed the political group the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK).
His leadership remain insecure though, so he focused on the export of the revolution, which essentially means destabilising the Middle East so that Iran can take control, and increasing the Iranian military budget far beyond what is reasonable in order to turn Iran into a dictatorship.
And when that didn’t work, he went after the media, shutting down independent news outlets and creating a propaganda machine that demonised the MEK and all of the regime’s enemies, notably including religious and ethnic minorities, human rights activists, even members of the cabinet.
Now, on the 40th anniversary of the Regime, with Ali Khamenei ruling as Supreme Leader, the Regime is not seeing joyous celebrations, but rather anti-regime protests. The people are calling for the Regime to go because they know that this is the only way to save Iran.
They shout: “We shall never stop until we get our occupied country back.”
The Regime knows that they are deeply unpopular, which is why they’ve been warning about growing MEK influence in Iran and voicing their uncertainties. This is the year for regime change in Iran.