Analysis by PMOI/MEK
Iran, Aug. 9, 2019 - Following the Iranian regime’s economic dilemma due to decades of mismanagement, international sanctions and blatant corruption, the situation of the ruling apparatus has become so complicated that a rather small issue like the dress code can swiftly become a matter of national security for the regime.
While senior Iranian officials, such as President Hassan Rouhani or the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei himself, don’t miss an opportunity to express how stable and powerful their regime is, different voices are becoming louder every day.
On August 4, following the blacklisting of the mullahs Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zari, government spokesman Ali Rabiei, a former labor minister, expressed his concerns about the Iranian opposition. “The presence of the anti-revolutionaries in the White House has increased,” he said.
Anti-revolutionaries is a term that Iranian officials use to describe the opposition.
“I really feel that the language that the White House is using has become very similar to the language used by these groups in their media outlets. And unfortunately, from Tirana to the White House, and some people that make statements from inside the country, this isn’t in the national interest,” he added in reference to the Iranian opposition group People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) currently residing in Albania.
In another meeting that was held in Iran’s so-called Journalist Day, Rabiei said: “There has been no other period where the domestic armed opposition has enjoyed such a presence in the White House,” adding that, “There has been no period where foreign enemies had such a control over psychological initiatives inside Iran.”
“There has been no period where the domestic public opinion has been drawn to foreign policy in such a way,” Rabiei said, expressing his concerns by saying that, “we need unity more than ever before.”
On August 5, Hossein Ashtari, head of the Iranian regime’s oppressive state police, expressed his concerns about the regime’s security.
“If an individual or group want to break the law, we are obliged to take countermeasures, because security is the red line of the police and we don’t allow violators to threaten the people,” he said referring to the 2017-2018 nationwide uprising. He also used the word “people” for the “regime”, a very common practice in the Iranian regime’s parlance and propaganda.
Hamdeli Newspaper, close to Rouhani’s faction, also expressed the regime’s concerns about popular unrest and uprisings.
“Recently, we are witnessing an invasion by [governmental] institutions into people’s private lives under different pretexts such as the dress code, makeup in private vehicles, family parties or meetings. While economic difficulties have put extra pressure on people’s lives, such cultural pressure will result in increased public discontent. While the country is facing foreign pressure, escalating such discontent is against national interests and national security,” the piece adds.
Fearing a popular uprising isn’t limited to the so-called reformist faction, regime conservatives close to the Khamenei feel the same.
Resalat newspaper wrote on August 4: “A 2017 nationwide survey showed that three-quarters of the population said they are pessimistic when asked how much they are optimistic that these problems and difficulties will resolve in the future, while some even said that the situation will deteriorate.”
“The government’s social capital has decreased and the trust in it has dropped. In fact, people believe that the management approach of the country isn’t efficient enough to solve society’s problems. All of these are signs of decreasing social capital.”
Resalat concludes that the fact that, “Relatively widespread and nationwide protests that erupted suddenly in many cities across the country can be deeply rooted in such disappointments.”