Archive for the ‘Khomeini’ Category

Interview with Karrubi

February 26, 2010

Here’s a partial transcript of an interview in Italy’s Corriere della Sera with Mehdi Karroubi,first published in Italian in 22 February:

Q: The events of these months have often been compared to the Revolution of 1979. You compared the violence of the repression to that of the Shah’s time, but you said that his army had shown more restraint. Do you see other similarities between our times and those?

Karrubi: The Shah’s regime was corrupt at its core, but he didn’t behave like this with the people. What do the armed forces have to do with the election’s results? Why did they treat the people like this on the 22nd of Bahman (11 February)? During the reign of the Shah there were rules; they did not take the people arrested to the mosque to beat them to death even before they appeared in front of the judiciary. These people make arrests without a warrant, beat them and keep them in detention. Not to mention the rest (such as the alleged rape of detainees).

Q: Under what conditions would you be ready to find a compromise with Ahmadinejad and recognise him as the legitimate president of Iran? Do you consider yourself to be a leader of this Green Movement?

Karrubi: I don’t consider myself the leader of the popular Green Movement. I consider myself a member of this movement and of the reformist movement. My actions aim to a return to the will and the ideals of the people, that is to say to the people’s sovereignty. I don’t have a personal conflict, nor a reason to reach an agreement or make peace with Ahmadinejad. We consider Ahmadinejad’s government an established government that has to answer for its actions, but not a lawful or legitimate government. I am nobody: it’s not up to me to find an agreement or a compromise. It is the people who have to decide whether or not they want a compromise with the government. It is the people who are in conflict with the government, and who do not accept its management of the country. The people don’t agree with the strategy that puts us in conflict with the world taken on by Ahmadinejad, and we are a part of this same people.

Q: Before the election could you imagine that the Iranian people would go so far in asking for their rights and that their anger would grow so much?

Karrubi: I did not imagine or foresee that the Iranian regime would go as far as rigging the popular vote as it did. On the other hand, the regime has adopted an obstinate and non conciliatory attitude with the people, which is the cause of the current problems. In the first days, the people said, “Where is my vote?” The people are still the same. So what happened that lead them to adopt the current slogans? The people want healthy elections and to see their votes counted.

Q:What is the worst thing that has been done in the name of the revolution? What were the most joyful moments of the revolution? Why do you still believe in the Islamic Republic?

Karrubi: The Islamic Republic consists of two concepts: republicanism and Islam. The worst thing is the damage done to both those concepts and principles. I’m not saying that nothing is left anymore, but the damage done is very serious, both to Islam and to the concept of “republicanism” which means “the opinion and the vote of the people”.

The Imam said that the final decision is up to the people. He always considered the public opinion and never allowed, even under the worse conditions, ambiguity and lack of clarity during the elections. What was damaged were the promises that we made to the people. The issue is not to make the regime fall, but to reform it.
I still believe in the Islamic Republic, but not in this kind of Islamic Republic! The Islamic Republic that we promised the people had the support and the vote of 98% of the population: it was the Islamic Republic of free elections and not of rigged elections. I believe in modern Islam, an Islam full of kindness and affection, not a violent or fanatic Islam.

Advertisements