War on the MKO or war of the MKO

For the US former officials who advocate the MKO’s cause in the Capital Hill, the case seems to be the matter of money. Some of these former top government officials, who have publicly advocated delisting of the group, have received federal subpoenas from the Treasury Department.

When the US President first spoke of the "war on terror", the world might barely think of a day when American politicians openly support a terrorist designated group , the Mojahedin Khalq Organization.

Seemingly the war on terror has turned into the war of terror. The world can also expect the day US Congress will be lobbied by Al-Qaida supporters to delist their notorious cult as what the MKO is doing today. “It's extraordinary that so many distinguished public servants would shill for a group that has American blood on its hands, “according to a US official who was shocked by his colleagues' dual approach towards terrorism. [1]

The facts on terrorist substance of the Mujahedin Khalq Organization are “indisputable” for the US State Department, according to Reza Marashi, director of research at the National Iranian American Council and a former Iran desk officer at the US State Department. ”the requisite evidence to legally maintain the MEK’s terrorist designation is ample and indisputable,” He writes. [2]

But the juicy story here is that an indisputably designated terrorist group is sponsored by Israel and a heavy bunch of former US politicians. The MKO runs ads on American TV channels and newspapers.[3] The ads imperatively call on Secretary Clinton to delist the group. Deadly attacks on Iranian nuclear scientists were carried out by the MKO which is armed, trained and funded by Israeli Mossad, US officials told NBC News. [4]

For the US former officials who advocate the MKO’s cause in the Capital Hill, the case seems to be the matter of money. Some of these former top government officials, who have publicly advocated delisting of the group, have received federal subpoenas from the Treasury Department. The investigation is focused on figuring out where the speaking fees the MKO rally panelist – including conferences in European Capitals- received come from. [5]

Ed Rendell, former Pennsylvania governor and ex-chairman of the democratic National Committee, who was the first person to receive subpoena and has received $160,000 over the past year from the MKO – or allegedly from its exiled sympathizers-claims that the fees came from wealthy American and foreign supporters of the MKO not the group itself but NBC News offers one clue for the source of the money. A small Pennsylvania based speakers firm called Speakers Access wrote an email in September inviting a Washington based national Security Expert to speak at a conference in Geneva, Switzerland "on behalf of our client ,National Council of Resistance of Iran, Foreign Affairs Committee”, according to Michael Isikof, National investigative correspondent of the AFP. [6]

Isikof continues ,”the email was later turned over to the FBI and other US officials. The Speakers Access executive who wrote the email, who asked not to be identified ,said the email was a “mistake “ and that the client was actually another organization--“the committee for Human Rights in Iran”, which is not on the terror list but which has the same contact in Paris as the National Council of Resistance of Iran. [7]

It is obvious that the money come from the MKO -- under different cover names. The legendary wealth of the group will not end soon. But as Clare Malone of The Prospect writes,” more disturbing is the fact that the MEK is basically a cult. In a 2009 report on the group, the Rand Corporation characterizes the MEK’s practices as 'cultic' and their recruitment tactics as 'deceptive “. She also quotes from Elizabeth Rubin as a journalist who spent an extended amount of time in Camp Ashraf that Friendships and all emotional relationships are forbidden in the MKO. [8]

As a matter of fact, the case of the MKO designation in US FTO list sounds complicated but one thing is clear: The MKO’s Cult-like nature is today as destructive as its capacity for terrorism. "The group -- which was once allied with Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, is also viewed warily because of the slavish devotion of its followers to its Paris based leader, Maryam Rajavi,” states Isikoff. [9]

As it was reported in the media, a few weeks ago US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton told that a decision on the MKO’s terrorist designation is pending in part to see if the group peacefully relocates to the new Temporary Transit Location near Baghdad. It’s definitely a weird criterion to define a group’s status as a foreign terrorist organization.” simply put, it is unacceptable to delist a designated FTO in return for them agreeing to relocate” Reza Marashi asserts, ”so as long as the MEK’s organizational structure remains in place, it legally remains a terrorist organization – regardless of where its base is located.” [10]

The case especially for the leaders of the MKO got more complicated when on March 27, 2012 Reuters reported that the Obama administration on Monday urged a US appeals court not to interfere with its review and decision making process over whether to remove the group from US terror list. [11]

According to Reuters, the States Department urged the court to stay out of the matter, saying it was continuing to evaluate the matter, consulting with the intelligence and other government agencies and that it had met with representatives of the Mujahedin-e Khalq. [12]

By the way, the MKO found it easy to buy its legitimacy in the US. As it goes for the MKO,” money talks” to US politicians.

Pro-MKO newspaper and TV ads are the evidence of this true fact. In the United States of America – land of Double Standards – nothing is impossible. You may see other terrorist groups including Al Qaida spending millions of dollars on lobbying to get delisted. For so0me of US former officials Law enforcement seems to be kind of joke.

 

References:

[1]Isikof, Michael, Ex-US officials investigated over speeches to Iranian dissident group on terror list, AFP, March 17, 2012

 [2]Marashi, Reza, Money vs. Facts: Mujahedin-e Khalq Is a Terrorist Organization, Huffingtonpost, March 15 2012

[3]Malone, Clare, What's Up with All the MEK Ads?, The Prospect, March 9,2012

[4] Engel, Richard& Windrem, Robert, Israel teams with terror group to kill Iran's nuclear scientists, US officials tell NBC News, MSNBS, February 9, 2012

[5] Isikof, Michael, Ex-US officials investigated over speeches to Iranian dissident group on terror list, AFP, March 17, 2012

[6] ibid

[7] ibid

[8] Malone, Clare, What's Up with All the MEK Ads?, The Prospect, March 9,2012

[9] Isikof, Michael, Ex-US officials investigated over speeches to Iranian dissident group on terror list, AFP, March 17, 2012

[10] Marashi, Reza, Money vs. Facts: Mujahedin-e Khalq Is a Terrorist Organization, Huffingtonpost, March 15 2012

[11]Reuters, U.S. urges court to stay out of decision on Iranian group, March 26, 2012

[12] ibid


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