Romancing the MEK: America's love affair with terrorists

Rudy Giuliani, the 2008 Republican Presidential candidate and the former New York Mayor has publicly stated that the United States should use a terrorist group to launch a military attack on Iran's civilian infrastructure -- the nuclear power plants.

Giuliani is not alone in his support of the Mujahedin-e Khalq terrorist cult (MEK, also known by other acronyms such as MKO, NCRI). Many prominent voices have put their weight behind the terrorist group.

America has had a long-standing love affair with terrorists. Support for terrorist groups and governments has been part and parcel of American policy. According to William Odom, President Reagan's former NSA Director, terrorism is a tactic with the United States having a long record of supporting terrorists [i]. But what is unique and novel about romancing the MEK is the political elite's brazen public display of support for the group, and the shameless prostitution of their services for a fee.

This must be a rude awakening for the American public. After hundreds of thousands of lives lost, trillions of dollars spent on waging a war on terror --"fighting them over there so they don't come over here", what has come home with the body bags and the debt is the realization that "they", the terrorists ARE here - and they have out politicians in their pockets.

Many citizens fail to understand America of present day. They have a hard time reconciling "fighting there", and the government establishing the Unites States as a battleground. They have difficulty understanding prominent politicians receiving payments from a group listed on the State Department's list of Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO), while a provision of the defense authorization bill would grant the military the authority to detain and hold anyone indefinitely, or to assassinate any individual suspected of having ties to al Qaeda [ii] -- a terrorist group who according to Hillary Clinton was funded and armed by the US.

Incomprehensible as the actions of these distinguished MEK supporters may be, it may well be that they take comfort in the fact that it is the MEK that is buying their lip service and not vice versa. Perhaps they would rather line their pockets instead of asking where the money comes from. But the question does bear asking.

According to the Council on Foreign Relations, the approximate number of the MEK terrorist cult is estimated at a few thousand members, 3400 of whom live in Camp Ashraf, Iraq. While the MEK residents of Camp Ashraf greatly benefit from American hospitality, including being chauffeured around by American soldiers, it is unlikely that they would be major contributors to their American supporters.

Who then, provides the funding for the solicitation of America's political elite?

The MEK has long had the support of the United States and policy makers (History Commons), although recently, after the most recent assassination of yet another Iranian scientist, U.S. officials disclosed to NBC that the MEK terrorist group was "financed, trained and armed by Israel's secret service. With American tax payers forking out billions of dollars a year to Israel, buying the services of American politicians by the MEK gives new meaning to the words money-laundering and prostitution.


[i] Odom, William, "American Hegemony: How to Use It, How to Lose It" (2007)