In the name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate
Great and proud nation of Iran:
Now that we are on the threshold of 22 Bahman and the anniversary of the victory of the glorious Islamic Revolution led by the Imam, I consider it necessary, while commemorating this day and paying my respects to the martyrs who sought independence and freedom mingled with the Islamic Republic, to raise a few points with you, the rightful possessors of this revolution, system, and country, as a minor servant who had an active presence throughout the ups and downs of this past half century, in the hope that the esteemed officials, especially those who are concerned about the system, would sensibly, justly, fairly, and refraining from the political favor or malice of currents or factions take note. In particular, Mehdi Karroubi, due to his age, is no longer in any condition to alter his behavior for political reasons and to reach worldly post or rank or office. If I were after such a thing, I would have made reclusion my guide and abandoned the wild steed of Iranian politics and spoken no more of the people’s rights and what the realm and the people have suffered and passed my time pleased with the treasury of my memories, at ease and without fanfare and put up for sale my Islamic, revolutionary, and popular accumulation of fifty years, providing myself with an easy life thereby and be respected by the lords of power. But such behavior is far from gallantry and unfit for a Muslim and I consider my life and death to be bound up with Islam, Iran, and the people. I know Iran and the people. My greatest pride is that I have been and will remain a servant of God, a son of Iran, and a soldier of the people. Therefore, I not only consider silence and separation from the people and ignoring the national interest to be unjust, but, based on religious values and the lofty aspirations of the people and the Imam as manifested in the Constitution, I have and will continue to devoted myself to the defense of the people’s rights under the sharia and the law and their legitimate freedoms. This is Mehdi Karroubi’s unshakable pledge to the great people of Iran. I now draw the attention of my dear brothers and sisters to a few important points.
1) We will all participate together, with strength and calm, in the procession for the anniversary of 22 Bahman, which is the commemoration of the manifestation of the noble people of Iran’s religious belief and national determination and a turning point in our country’s proud history. On this day, we will strive to demand the hope-inspiring achievements and aspirations, some of which have either been forgotten or perverted, with patience and firmness, refraining from violence in word or deed. These legal demands are the people’s right, the promise made by the Islamic Republic in the revolution of 1978 and which today the people in power have concealed in the storage house of power. 22 Bahman, in a word, is the day of the people. The martyr Ayatollah Modarres had these eloquent words to say about the oath between people and government which arose after the declaration of the next in line to the stewardship of the Prophet and the Immaculate Ones [here, the Shiite Imams] who had a direct charge from God: “There is one case such as our times, when that ruler is from the people. In this case, his duty is to execute the instructions which the people give him, and any instruction, from improving the land to safeguarding the people of this nation … The constitution is an instruction which the nation gives to that individual, and if that ruler does not act in accordance with it, he is an oppressor and a transgressor and must be deposed.”
2) We are going to greet this year’s anniversary of 22 Bahman under circumstances in which the twin pillars of the republican and Islamic character of the system have come under severe question. The tenth presidential elections were accompanied by an engineering of the people’s votes. The answer to the people’s simple question in the great silent march of 25 Khordad, as well as those to come, “Where is my vote?” was met with violent repression, causing the walls of trust between the people and the government to collapse. This created the context in which Imam Khomeini’s inheritance and that which has been bought at the cost of the martyrs’ blood to be faced with its greatest difficulty of the last three decades. The people knew well and the officials themselves have known that the solution to these difficulties was neither in covering the problem up, nor in torturing with brand and awl. The people should be taken seriously in issues facing the country and demanding their rights, and they should cooperate with the people for the sake of their demands and interests and well-being. Repressing, arresting, and the mass imprisonment of political activists, journalists and students and show trials, executions and harsh punishments and creating a police atmosphere is not an appropriate policy to deal with what has happened and is happening. Giving in to the nation’s demands and recognizing their rights is the way out of the current crisis. I appeal to the great Sources of Emulation and the distinguished clergy and the centers or religious scholarship and all the credible figures and personalities, social, political, and cultural, as well as the great minds of the people out of concern, to come to the aid of Islam and the people by preparing realistic plans which shun pointless verbal sparring before it is too late. The splendid Sources of Emulation know that what is happening to this country, to this people today, whether we like it or not, is in the name of Islam and Shiism and the clergy. Therefore, everyone must defend Islam’s honor and the people’s rights to the extent of their abilities. Let those in charge, for their part, change their policies and know that neither our silence and retreat nor their threats and intimidation and violence will not solve the problem.
3) These days, the people, these rightful possessors of the revolution, are living in difficult circumstances for numerous reasons, including economic, political, security, and, above all, a lack of concern for their civil rights. Denying these conditions does not change the truth or reality, even though some call it a fitna and others call it a crisis or attach other words to it. One of the country’s biggest difficulties today is precisely the denial of difficulties or being satisfied with attaching different names to them. Their Excellencies not only try to ignore the problem and not accept it, but try to turn the bitter existing realities upside down through unworthy and childish analogies. Therefore, not a step is taken to deal with them. While they are perplexed as to how to administer the country’s simple affairs, they claim to administer the word’s affairs. The rising economic, cultural, political, and moral troubles have caused their allies and those with whom they are in agreement in the Majis to raise their voices and, despite the slogan, “Justice and kindness and service to God’s creatures,” there is galloping inequality and discrimination in society. Discrimination and government corruption have reached the point that, according to the latest international figures, our country has taken the significant fall to the rank of the 168th country in the world in this regard.
4) Regrettably, despite the teachings of Islam, society’s atmosphere is filled with pretention, sycophancy, lying, and widespread flattery. On the one hand there are the vile sycophants and on the other hand worthless extremists throw themselves in to field and restrict it for scholars and the learned and the sensible. The market for insult and slander and abuse has become so hot that the pillars of the system, the revolution and the Imam’s loyal friends, are not safe from it. Fools, with eyes closed and mouths open, in complete security, recklessly sell themselves as eulogists and, by spreading insults and slander, have made things difficult for the pure and the good, who have to take refuge in God because the marketplace is in such an uproar. I recall that the Imam of the ommat, in order to protect the honor and station of everyone, was so careful with all his being that he not even tolerate well-known figures and the high-ranking being praised and would scream that the soul of man is prideful and rebellious, do not praise me lest I be tempted and believe it.
If we want a principled solution,
• We must pour dust into the mouths of the sycophantic praise singers and the hand and tongue and pen of the worthless violent people must be reformed and controlled and the marketplace of religion-selling and monopolism must be rejected.
• All the articles of the Constitution must be executed fully and the right of the electors and the elected must be taken from the Assembly of Experts of the Leadership so that the Islamic Consultative Assembly and the President obey them. The appalling innovation of the Guardian Council, which puts all Iranians, including prominent and well-known figures, to the blade of ratification must be abolished. The criterion must be nothing other than the nation’s vote and not cherry-picking or engineering the people’s votes on the basis of the tastes of a few elite. I am certain that the noble people of Iran, thanks to the religious atmosphere, will surely set upright, sound, committed, and expert people at the head of affairs.
• The unconditional release of political prisoners.
• An open environment for the press and the recognition of criticism and critics and the restoration of tranquility to the universities.
• The police atmosphere and the environment of terror and fear should be eliminated. This is not an atmosphere conducive to unity and cooperation.
It is a hundred times certain that in this case, there are many demands which the protest current will raise which it is keeping silent over out of its extreme sense of longsuffering. Beware lest those who want to all drag you into destroying the structure, this being what our opponents and the enemies of your peaceful movement want. Going in a violent atmosphere or being seized by an atmosphere which might be blamed on you and being an accomplice to behavior which is against your interests and agreements is what the illogical repressors want. Beware lest the agents of influence or foreigners infiltrate your ranks and damage your religious and moral and national values. I officially declare that our friends and allies are asking about the measures and the results of the tenth presidential elections and the whereabouts of their votes. They are demanding their rights according to the sharia and the law with an emphasis on Islam and the system and the national interest, and this in silence and calm so that it could be reasonably asked of the agents of the execute, security, the police, and the media, “What have you done so that all this has happened and things have come to such a pass?”
To conclude, it is necessary that the dear people, and particularly the educated classes and the youth, note that what is unfolding in society today called a protest movement is not an all-encompassing ideology which has hard and fast boundaries and on which basis it selects people and takes responsibility for the behavior of all those present in it. This movement is not for the defense of a belief or a particular political or religious aim. Naturally, there are people in it who have various views and beliefs, each of which any one of us might agree or disagree with. The common face of this movement is holding to the right to vote, free elections, a free press, the unconditional freedom of political prisoners, the reform of the work of governing and legislating and respect for the people’s civil rights. Indubitably, the raising of demands and deviation from the aforementioned goals will provide an excuse for the movement’s violent repression. Therefore I as an aging father submit to the dear youth and as a brother who has seen the world’s ups and downs and whose course is run submit to the old and middle-aged that raising any issues besides the just and legal ones is a deviation from the course and this is what the opponents of this movement and, in some cases, fits into their work with agents of influence.
In the hope of the day that the people of the government and power will bring sense and justice to bear and will prepare what the happiness of the leaders of Islam and the people of Iran require in the light of recognizing the people’s rights.
In concluding our appeal, praise be to God, Lord of the worlds.
Speaker or Agency: Mehdi Karroubi
Title: Ruler that does not obey constitution is oppressor
Language: Persian, English
Western Date: 3 February 2010
Persian Date: 14 Bahman 1388
Physical/Electronic Location: http://www.facebook.com/note.php?note_id=285420257605&id=45061919453&ref=mf, http://sahamnews.org/?p=740
Citation or official document code
Translator: Facebook (unknown)
Date Translated: 3 February 2010
Tags: mehdi karroubi, statement
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