|There was no way to escape the “sect”. Some, in spite of pressure, managed to keep a distance and they dare now to speak out.|
An Army of Ants
There was no way to escape the “sect”. Some, in spite of pressure, managed to keep a distance and they dare now to speak out. They are risking their lives. This is due to the PMOI’s very strong culture of death, which only further proves how aberrant its world has become.
Liberation presents it this way: “The leadership of the People’s Mojahedin, the once Marxist organization which has lost its bearing and become a sect, has, also intensified the death wish of its militants. It could do this because the enforced military discipline is total. The rare party dissidents, those who have been able to escape, tell of the separation of husbands from wives, children from parents”. 1
These revelations are hardly helpful to the PMOI. For it to survive, it must constantly recruit new militants. As is their wont, when it is difficult to deny that there have been desertions from its ranks, the Mojahedin put the fault on . . .the dissidents themselves!
They state: “The People ‘s Mojahedin Organisation is a living being. New individuals and groups are joining the organization every day while on other days some, for reasons that are unique and understandable given their personal behaviour, are sent away or leave voluntarily. These cases are the result of an inability to tolerate the cult conditions of the struggle against the unprecedented religious Fascism, unknown in recent Iranian history “. 2
Let those- who having believed in and given their all for the PMOI, who came to feel that they had been betrayed and manipulated — beware. Their old friends call them supporters of Ayatollah Khomeini, collaborators, sellouts and spies, when they are not seen as compulsive liars and insane.
Exiled in Norway, Hassan Khalaj experienced martyrdom before escaping the organization's claws: “The Mojahedin constantly talked about democracy, but in the camp I was in there was none. There were people who did not want to stay there. They were subjected to intense pressure and were even beaten. Morteza Yussefi, could not physically keep up with the training, was exhausted and wanted to stop. While he slept, he was beaten with clubs. There was a terrible atmosphere. I asked questions, but they only answered that I had no right to know the answers. This was the beginning of my rethinking of what I was living through. Whoever protested anything was called a spy for the regime. Since I continued to ask questions, they accused me of being an agent provocateur for the Iranian Secret Police. They tortured me and practiced sleep deprivation...” 3
Hassan, like all those who defected from the PMOI were publicly accused of being traitors. Victims of mudslinging, discredited, they were branded as “agents of the mullahs’ regime”. This was the limit, given that we know these targeted individuals having given their best to the organization were now being persecuted by their ex-comrades.
The ultra-Left groups know the jargon well. They know how to use it to portray the executioner as the victim and to consign the real victim to infamy.
As Francis Guilbert wrote about Cambodia, tragically crucified by the Khmers Rouges:
“Through this journey to the heart of the Pol Pot system, we can see better how the Party ensured the docility of its personnel through increasing pressure on them, investigations and self criticism sessions . . . When he [the hero of Guilbert’s story] sees the torturers turn the situation in their own favour by portraying their victims as criminals, he rebels”. 4
In the thought of the People’s Mojahedin, these desertions were even more unacceptable since, according to them, there is no alternative to the PMOI. She or he who did not accept, body and soul, the truths as preached by Rajavi automatically had to be agents of the Teheran regime:
“There is no fighting force competing with the Mojahedin on the Iranian political scene today... This has been true for many years. It is therefore clear that anyone in the Mojahedin who does not participate in the war of liberation against Iran launched by the Mojahedin must confess their inability to accept armed struggle against Iran.
The first question such an individual must face is: what strategy is the most effective and what other political organization provides this option?... There is no other strategy and no other organization. The armed resistance is the last recourse against Iran.
After them, the deluge, or rather the desert that awaits the so- called traitors. They have no present or past. This is, indeed, a very short term approach for an organization which claims that there is no salvation outside of itself. Its opponents — like the Fedais Organisation of the Iranian People - bluntly attack this way of seeing and thinking. This is especially so since they open the Gates of Hell: “Concerning democratic freedoms, the sect has not yet accepted any other current of thought or any other identity but its own. In its small world and its international relations, everything is in place to punish its opponents. Prison, torture, secret executions, and dozens of other violations are common and in regular use by them against their ideological opponents. At this end of the 2O” Century, this is a blot on all humanity”. 5
1- "Les Mujahedin du people glofirient la mort, le sang, le sacrifice… et leurs dirigeants" – Jean-Pierre, Liberation,19 June 2003
2.- “Democracy Betrayed”, op. cit.
3.- Hassan Khalaj: “On m’a persécuté parce queje posais trop de questions”, Interview by Author, Le Nouvelliste, 14 April 1999.
4.- “Genocide khmer une voix contre l’oubli”, on Rithy Panh’s film, “The Khmer Rouge Machine” in Alternatives Internationales, May-June 2003.
5.- Kar, op cit.