Reporting by PMOI/MEK
Iran, November 13, 2019—On Tuesday, Iranian regime president Hassan Rouhani delivered a speech in Kerman province, in which he described the state of the regime as abnormal, complicated and difficult. Rouhani’s remarks were in stark contrast with his previous claims that his regime is on the path to flourishing.
“We are not in normal and simple circumstances. If we take into account from 1979 to this day in 2019, we are currently in the harshest days and months. From 1979 to this day, since when did we have so many problems in selling our oil and sending an oil tanker?” Rouhani said.
The Iranian regime faces tough sanctions by the U.S. against its oil and banking sector because of its sponsorship of terrorism, development of weapons of mass destruction and human rights abuses. The sanctions have put severe strain on the regime’s capacity to fund its illicit activities in the region.
“When the country faces problems selling oil, how are we supposed to manage the country?” Rouhani said. “Our annual budget is 450 trillion tomans (around $41 billion). We have two necessities; first we need rials (Iran’s currency). This 450 trillion tomans… where is this money supposed to come from? 30 percent of our country’s revenue is provided through taxes and customs. The main revenue that runs the country is oil money.”
Rouhani’s admission that his regime needs oil revenue to run the country is in denial of remarks of Iranian regime supreme leader Ali Khamenei, who has been constantly talking about the “resistance economy” and the growth of national industries. Despite Iran’s vast resources, those boisterous plans have all met their doom due to the endemic corruption that plagues the regime in its entirety.
"Try as they might, after 40 years of stealing from the Iranian people’s pocket, the regime’s officials can’t hide their crimes, and whatever they do only results in more evidence of their corruption being revealed."#Iranhttps://t.co/UnnE0DDCTl— People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) (@Mojahedineng) November 9, 2019
“If we were in normal conditions today, we would be selling an average $60 billion of oil,” Rouhani continued. “If you consider the $60 billion, at 10,000 tomans per dollar, this adds to 600 trillion tomans. We also need foreign currency. Some of our imports, be it goods or services, are only possible through foreign currency.”
Interestingly, while Rouhani pleads that the country needs access to global financial systems, Iranian officials continue to quarrel and dither over the passing of necessary bills to make the regime conformant to global anti-money laundering and counterterrorism rules. Passing those bills would further strain the regime's capability to fund terror groups such as the Lebanese Hezbollah, placing the regime in a catch-22 situation
“The country has an annual average necessity of around $50 to $60 billion. A portion of these imports are the government’s duty, being basic goods it needs to import, medicine, medical equipment we need to import. And there are also services that we need to purchase and import. This is around $20 billion a year… at least. I’m telling you very frankly that we only have a small portion of the previous [$60 billion/year] oil revenue…”
Rouhani also admitted that from 25 million Iranian families, around 18 million are in harsh conditions. But lacking from Rouhani’s remarks were the role of the regime in pushing the country into poverty and misery. While the people are struggling to make ends meet and survive, the regime continues to squander the country’s wealth on foreign intervention, the funding of terrorist groups and attacks on neighboring countries.
In defiance of the international community, the regime has resumed the development of expensive uranium enrichment equipment. The regime is also spending handsome sums on supporting militia groups in Iraq, which are actively shooting and killing protesters in different cities. Dissatisfaction with the regime's squandering of national wealth on foreign projects has become a common theme in daily protests across Iran.
Also missing from Rouhani’s comments was government corruption, which is taking a heavy toll on the lives of the Iranian people. Earlier in the week, in another speech in Yazd province, Rouhani had criticized the judiciary on cases of corruption. But his rivals were quick to point out that his own entourage was also actively involved in fraud and embezzlement cases. Rouhani’s own brother is now in prison on corruption charges. Maybe that's why he didn't bother raise the issue again in his new speech.