WHEN the Khomeini Revolution started in 1979, the rate of youths in the revolution was about 55 percent of the population. At the time, the strength of the revolution, which the new movement of turbaned Shah referred to as ‘cassette revolution’, depended on youths.
They deposed the Shah, Muhammad Reza Pahlavi, when they stood firm with their bare chests in front of the military, police and SAVAK (the then Iranian Intelligence agency).
Today, the Iranian youths represent a staggering 63 percent of the population which has been patient for the past 39 years under the rule of a group of people who are still living in Middle Age caves, completely disconnected from global reality and immense developments that nations have witnessed in the last four decades.
The ongoing event in Iran is not a revolution or an uprising (intifada) which can be calmed with promises, since the motives are way deeper than the ones which led to the Green Revolution in 2009 in protest of the presidential election and rigging that took place to extend the rule of fundamentalist Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
The current revolution is a revolution of hunger; hearing the screams of 40 percent of jobless Iranians protesting against the high living standard while a handful people control all the wealth of the country, let alone the billions wasted outside Iran under the pretext of ‘revolution export’ which only made Iran more isolated from the world. I
n the second half of the 1970s, Al-Seyassah daily interviewed the Shah of Iran. One of the important points he mentioned was: “Oil is a strategic source of wealth which can be used for major industrial development in Iran that would transform it into a regional and global economic hub. Hence, we see the fair price of oil per barrel to be $80.” At the time, the price of oil per barrel ranged from $12 to $13. The words of Shah were the magical key of western hell, which started with the United States of America pressuring its major oil companies to work towards eliminating Muhammad Reza Pahlavi.
Khomeini was exiled in Iraq, from where he worked with religious blocs in his country to destabilize the government of the day. The Western and American intelligence agencies found in him their missing tool, especially since their experience with the revolution of Mohammad Musadeq in 1953 led to consolidation of leftist communism influence in Iran.
This important country revolving round the Soviet Union meant loss of gateway into the communist empire then. In 1978, Iraq succumbed to Iranian pressure by exiling Khomeini to France after Kuwait rejected the offer to host him. He started the ‘cassette revolution’ in Paris with the support of Western and American intelligence agencies. However, the new Shah exploited the religious emotion to revolutionize citizens whose objective was not in line with Western ideologies. Because of this, he announced upon his return to Tehran in February 1979 a slogan that later became the core of the new constitution of the country – ‘revolution export’.
This is in addition to militarizing policies of the society to accomplish the expansion project built on mythical ideology, which is impossible to actualize due to the nature of well-established international relations in the 20th century, after the two world wars. If Iranians were victims of the Shah’s dream to transform the country into an industrial empire, they were also victims of expansion dreams during the era of Mullah regime.
This time, the country’s resources were depleted as it supported terrorist militias such as Hezbollah in Lebanon, Houthi gangs in Yemen and sectarian groups in Iraq and Syria. This is in addition to campaigns to change religious beliefs in Africa; as well as destructive activities in Latin America and interference in Bahrain, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and many other countries. Resources were also wasted on manufacturing long range intercontinental missiles and the military nuclear program.
This remains a controversial subject till date, regardless of the pact signed with the ‘Big Six’ at a time 56 percent of Iranians are living below the poverty level. As a result, we can say that history repeats itself. People could not bear to be patient for a few years in case the dreams of Shah came true. Iranians would have been among the richest in the world. Iranians gave opportunities to the Mullah regime which lasted for four decades. Throughout that period, people saw their wealth being squandered while they were starving.
However, the time has come for Iranians to explode furiously in front of the gang which has been involved in the highest level of corruption as demonstrators echoed in Tehran and other cities. Iranians know well that anybody who dominates Azadi Square in Tehran controls the ‘Bazaar’ or economic power in the entire country.
Today, when 30 cities which cover most parts of Iran and represent all ethnicities, classes and sectors revolted and demonstrators dominated the famous Azadi Square; this means the gallows that the regime used to put on tractors to hang youths have come closer to the throats of officials. The millions who stood up seeking for food can no longer be terrified by gangs of the Revolutionary Guard.
The Iranian youths of today are not like those who lived 40 years ago. They are more open to the world, thanks to the advanced media and social networking sites. Iranian youths will no longer accept suffering and starvation, while the murderer and terrorist mercenaries of the regime are enjoying the wealth of the Iranian people.
By Ahmed Al-Jarallah Editor-in-Chief, the Arab Times