Analysis by PMOI/MEK
Iran, Jan. 16, 2019 - Ali Rabie, a Deputy Intelligence Minister of the Iranian regime and a former labor minister, made startling remarks in an interview signaling how people in 160 cities across the country held protest rallies during a nationwide uprising that began at the end of 2017. These protests may be repeated, he added.
It is worth noting that Iranian regime authorities and operatives inside the country always dismissed the 142 protesting cities cited by the Iranian Resistance as exaggeration. Members of the Iranian opposition People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) and reporters of Iran National Television (INTV) were present in each and every one of the 142 cities, providing up-to-date reports during the Dec/Jan 2018 uprising.
In this interview with the state-run ISNA news agency, Rabie time and again referred to the powder keg nature of Iran’s society.
“I consider the Dec/Jan 2018 incident was a very important event in the past 40 years and I believe it was an unprecedented experience in social unrests we had not seen before in the past four decades,” he explained.
“If there is a leak anywhere in the dam, there will be a devastating catastrophe and floods. During the Dec/Jan 2018, there were events in Mashhad (northeast Iran) where the silence was broken. A crowd, with a protesting potential, ended its silence and sparked unrest in other cities,” Rabie added.
“What is added to today’s unrests is that there is a feeling there is no positive future possible and there is little hope to solve our existing issues… The reason why these protests did not surface prior to the Dec/Jan 2018 period is the result of a social shock, described as a butterfly effect. The butterfly effect breaks the ice and brings protests to the surface…. The butterfly effect resulted in protests to spread to 160 cities back in the Dec/Jan 2018 period, and some were even killed in these cities…
“In response to questions about will these protests and events be repeated, and can they play the role of an alarm siren, my answer is yes. These events can be repeated because the reason why they sparked in the first place is alive and well… The nature of unrests in the Dec/Jan 2019 period was a revolt limited to certain regions, and all the while very dangerous that sounded many alarm bells and has the potential to expand.”
Back in August, when the Iranian regime’s Majlis (parliament) impeached Rabie, he referred to his experience in confronting the mullahs’ crises:
“I have served for forty years. I have seen many crises in these forty years. One day 12,000 [PMOI/MEK members and supporters] held a rally in southern Tehran. In each city, they had a thousand members and supporters staging a march. We surpassed that day. I know there are difficult times ahead. I know [U.S. President Donald] Trump has targeted our society’s minds… Today, we are losing our trust in the society. We are losing our links with today’s society.”