Thousands of Iranian Americans Rally for Regime Change in Iran
Rep. Brad Sherman (D-CA)
We stand in solidarity with brave Iranians who are fighting for a new chapter in this great nation’s history. This new chapter will be written by Iranians.
—This regime may be on its last legs. It is acting with desperation, desperate to distract people from its own corruption.
I want to also take this opportunity to commend Madam Rajavi for her advocacy for democracy, women’s rights, and minority rights in Iran.
Speakers & Messages
Rep. Tom McClintock (R-CA)
As the tyranny of the mullahs has become more extreme, the international resistance to them has become more resolute…We see it with the 75 of my colleagues here in the House who co-sponsored H.Res.374 to reaffirm our committed support for the Iranian people’s desire for a democratic, secular, and non-nuclear Republic of Iran.
We are fast approaching one of those rare moments of history when the world can change overnight. Those who love and cherish freedom in our country and throughout the world stand with you.
Iranian Americans rally in Washington for regime change—by Iranians
On Friday June 21, 2019, Several thousand Iranian Americans from 40 U.S. states held a large rally beginning at the Department of State in Washington, D.C. Participants then marched to the White House. Rally participants, including Iranian advocacy groups, expressed support for people’s uprising for regime change in Iran and called for a firm policy on the Iranian regime to counter its increased repression at home and aggression in the region.
In her keynote speech, Madam Maryam Rajavi, the president-elect of the Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) said, “For the past 40 years, the regime [in Iran] has persistently waged wars against the people of Iran and [the] world.” Yet thanks to an unwavering resistance movement, she added, “The regime is getting weaker by the day, and with every passing day, it gets a step closer to downfall.”
Two sitting members joined the rally and addressed the large crowd of Iranian American community groups. In his speech, Congressman Tom McClintock (R-CA) focused on the growing international solidarity in support of the Iranian people. He referenced House Resolution 374 and its 75 bipartisan cosponsors and said, “The Iranian freedom movement has grown dramatically. As the tyranny of the mullahs has become more extreme, the international resistance has become more resolute.”
Congressman Brad Sherman (D-CA), who serves on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, told rally participants that he stands, “In solidarity with brave Iranians who are fighting for a new chapter in the history of this great nation.” Also reiterating rally’s slogans, Sherman noted that this new chapter “Will be written by Iranians.” He also highlighted congressional effort to support the Iranian people and said, “I am the chief Democratic sponsor of House Res 374, a resolution supporting the people of Iran, free expression, and condemning the Iranian regime for its deprivation of human rights.”
Former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson said, “[Mrs. Rajavi’s] ten-point plan sounds like America, it sounds like democracy.” We need a new regime in Iran, Richardson said adding, “And that regime is you, the MEK, NCRI, the alternative. And I’m going to tell you why. I’m going to tell you why. First, it’s a strong organization with a lot of competence, with a lot of commitment, with a lot of leadership abilities.”
Retired General Jack Keane reminded the crowd of thousands who waved Iranian flags that, “The maximum pressure campaign is working. Iran is choking on the sanctions. Iran’s recent provocations tell the story.”
“Iran’s provocations have two purposes: To pressure the U.S. to remove the sanctions, and to convince the countries of the region that the U.S. will not protect them. Both will fail,” Keane continued.
Dr. Ramesh Sepehrad, OIAC advisory board member and a scholar practitioner at George Mason University said in her remarks, “The U.S. pressure on the mullahs is working and for all those that say sanctions are hurting the Iranian people, we say the Iranian regime is hurting them more. And that is why the people are shouting in the streets that our enemy is here, they lie when they say it is the U.S.” She then added, “For those who say Iran would become another Syria if the mullahs were to be toppled, we say the mullahs are the one who propped up the criminal regime of Assad.”
We recognize and appreciate the considerable contribution, volunteer activism, and participation of not only Iranian American interest groups, but also hundreds of concerned American citizens, journalists, and scholars.
Remarks by Maryam Rajavi, President Elect, National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI)
What is the real question for US and European policies vis-a-vis the fascist religious regime ruling Iran?
Fellow citizens, freedom-loving Iranians, sympathizers and friends of the Iranian Resistance,
Rebels for Iran’s freedom, who have travelled all the way from across the U.S., to come together today in Washington, D.C. The Iranian nation hears your anthems and your cries for freedom. Today, you are the voice of an oppressed nation whose assets have been robbed. Greetings to you, to the elected representatives of the American people who are here, and to personalities and long-time friends and supporters of the Iranian people’s Resistance for democracy and human rights. They have all come today to stand with you.
Congratulations on the anniversary of the resistance, June 20, the Day of Martyrs and Political Prisoners, and on the anniversary of the founding of the Army of Freedom; a movement that has unceasingly forged ahead in all theatres for four decades, relying on its own toil, struggle and sacrifice.
Sovereignty of the people vs. the mullahs’ rule
To fend off the people’s fury, for forty years, the murderous mullahs have pointed their fingers at the U.S. as the enemy. But we were not deceived. As Massoud Rajavi has said: “When we declared ‘down with the reactionaries,’ we stood by it. We have and will continue to declare that what we seek is the regime’s overthrow, overthrow, overthrow.” Now, the people of Iran cry out in every street and alley that “our enemy is right here; the mullahs lie when they say America is the enemy.
Indeed, this is a regime whose Constitution has formally replaced people’s sovereignty and universal suffrage with the rule of the mullahs. The medieval mullahs tell the Resistance’s freedom fighters and Army of Freedom:
- Give up and surrender, otherwise you are infidels and pagans who wage war on God. You are agents of the Global Arrogance; you are a sect and you do not have a place or any base of support among the people in Iran.
• Do not resist, otherwise you are terrorists. Otherwise, you are going to be deluged by fake allegations.
Yes, the disgraceful demonization campaign against the Iranian Resistance in the pro-appeasement media seeks to perpetuate the narrative that the people of Iran are better off with the theocratic rule of the mullahs; There is no alternative, and don’t even think or talk about it. Their conclusion is:
- The religious fascism must be appeased and there are no other options.
• Now, if the U.S. administration does not appease the mullahs’ tyranny, it would be a warmonger.
• If the U.S. obstructs the Iranian regime’s path toward nuclear weapons, it would be a warmonger.
The absurd comments made by the mullahs and their Foreign Minister about the so-called “B Team” in the United States was a bid to hide their own “bomb” team: From developing a nuclear bomb to bombings in Albania and France, to bombings and planting of mines on oil tankers in the Persian Gulf, to the explosions, drones and missile attacks on Saudi Arabia and targeting of the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad. When the mullahs pay no price for their conducts, they become more emboldened and go even further. Firing of rockets in Mosul and Basra and the missile attack on the U.S. drone are clear examples.
Remarks by Maryam Rajavi, President Elect, National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) – Continued:
Indeed, who is the belligerent party? Who launched consecutive rocket and missile attacks at camps Ashraf and Liberty?
Before the terrorist designation of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and the imposition of sanctions, and before the U.S. pulled out of the nuclear deal, the mullahs had no qualms about claiming that Syria was Iran’s 35th province. They did not hesitate to say that Iraq was their “center and capital” and even that “its geography is inseparable from Iran’s.”
The present IRGC commander in chief once explicitly said: “The geography of our revolution has extended to northern Africa.” He then went on to warn that “it was the flames of the Islamic Revolution that flared” in 1983 in Lebanon, “where a courageous move by a young Muslim buried 260 U.S. marines under the rubble in Beirut, east of the Mediterranean Sea.”
Yes, the people of Iran who have been inundated by floods, destitution and various calamities, are crying out, “Let go of Syria and think about us instead.” But the regime’s meddling and crimes in Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Lebanon and Afghanistan have so far brought them no serious consequences.
Appeasement or decisiveness?
Indeed, what is the real question at the core of the U.S. and European policy vis-a-vis the religious fascist regime ruling Iran: appeasement or decisiveness? The closer we get to the end of this regime, the contradiction and polarization between the regime and regime opponents become more conspicuous.
For the past forty years, the regime has persistently waged wars against the people of Iran and the world. Still, regime apologists and those who benefit from its continued rule feign concern for war. They use this as a pretext to dissuade the world from adopting any form of decisiveness, and instead urge appeasement of the ruling murderers in Iran. The main victims, however, are the people of Iran. The experience of the past 40 years has demonstrated that the mullahs’ theocratic regime is incapable of any reform or change of behavior. Indeed, as a (Persian) saying goes, “a viper will never give birth to a dove.”
Khamenei says that change in the regime’s behavior is tantamount to regime change.
Therefore, what is the real question before us, our people and our resistance? To surrender or to fight for liberation.
Consider the American Declaration of Independence. The question before George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin and their comrades and supporters was the same. And, similarly, our answer is the same: To resist and fight until victory.
Hail to the brave women and men who have swelled the ranks in their quest for freedom in the form of resistance units and popular resistance councils, and you should be proud to have extended these ranks to the U.S. capital.
Three months ago, for the first time in the past 70 years, the President of the United States in his Nowruz (Persian New Year) message to the people of Iran attested to the fact that:
“The Iranian people desire to reclaim their country’s proud history, expressive culture, and rightful place on the world stage. They deserve a government that is accountable to them and that treats them with dignity and respect.”
He emphasized: “We pledge never to turn a deaf ear to the calls of the Iranian people for freedom, and we will never forget their ongoing struggle for human rights.”
Yes, we do not want anything more than freedom and human rights, which will of course also open the way for us toward development and justice. This will ensue peace and security in Iran and the Middle East; an Iran free of religious fascism, a non-
As Massoud Rajavi has said, this outcome will “offer peace, security, democracy, human rights, stability, rebuilding, friendship, and a non-nuclear Iran that seeks economic cooperation and development in this part of the world, and a country that will respect international laws and conventions.” This is why, above and beyond anything else, the mullahs are most fearful of change at the hands of the Iranian people, the Iranian Resistance and the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK).
It is right at this point that it becomes clear that the religious dictatorship is a paper tiger when it comes to facing off with the Iranian Resistance. And its fate is no different from the fate of the Shah’s dictatorship. This is the verdict of history and the yearning of the people of Iran.
Yes, freedom will prevail over the Shah and the Sheikh (mullahs). My fellow citizens, Dear friends who have defied religious dictatorship and fascism, The regime is getting weaker by the day, and with every passing day it gets a step closer to its downfall.
Consequently, all of us bear heavier responsibilities. This is the time for us to be on alert.
Without doubt, the faltering mullahs’ dictatorship cannot withstand our nation’s resistance, uprisings, and the great Army of Freedom. Hail to freedom. Hail to all of you.
Congressman Brad Sherman (D-CA) House Foreign Affairs Committee
Hello, I’m Brad Sherman from California’s best named city, Sherman Oaks. And with me here is my daughter, Molly Sherman, who is beginning to learn how we need to fight for human rights around the world.
It is a travesty that a nation as great as Iran, a nation that gave us our first, the world’s first human rights document, instead must live under an oppressive undemocratic regime, a regime that commits murders of its own people, a regime that now uses international aggression in an effort to distract people from their own venal corruption. This must end.
This is a regime known for its mass executions, its jailing of journalists, its fueling of extremism around the region. And Iranians have stood up. At great risk to themselves, they have shouted, “No Gaza, No Lebanon, No Syria, My Life For Iran.” We stand in solidarity with brave Iranians who are fighting for a new chapter in this great nation’s history.
This new chapter will be written by Iranians, not by Americans. Democracy will come to Iran from Iran, not from U.S. military intervention.
But this regime may be on its last legs. It is acting with desperation. Desperate to distract people from its own corruption.
I want to also take this opportunity to commend Madame Rajavi for her advocacy for democracy, women’s rights, and minority rights in Iran.
Democracy and equality are not just principles we hold dear, they are rights that belong to people and we uphold these ideals, we uphold them around the world and across Iran.
I am the chief Democratic sponsor of House Resolution 374, a resolution supporting the people of Iran, free expression, and condemning the Iranian regime for its deprivation for human rights.
I was proud to speak via video in October of 2018 at the rally in Paris.
Our U.S. Justice Department has charged two agents of the Iranian regime for its collecting of intelligence on Iranian opposition members here in Washington. I am sure that there is a small office of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps watching the tapes right here. Soleimani, this is the future of Iran, watch it on your video screen.
I have been dedicated to helping those who are trying to achieve democracy in Iran, whether it be in meeting with the Prime minister of Albania to make sure that Iranian exiles there are protected, whether it be to fight against hostage taking by the Iranian regime.
I look forward to joining all with you as an observer in the next (step) when we will see a free election in Iran meeting international standards of freedom and fairness. See you in Tehran, I’m Brad Sherman.
Rep. Tom McClintock (R-CA)
Thank you all. Thank you each and every one of you for being here today. You know, the Iranian freedom movement has not just endured, it has grown dramatically as the injustices and atrocities of the illegitimate Iranian regime have become so widespread and so despised. As the tyranny of the mullahs has become more extreme, the international resistance to them has become more resolute. The more the story of Iran is told, of this proud ancient heritage of freedom and civilization, and of its current curse of despotism and terror, the more the world has rallied to your cause.
We’ve seen this in the liberation of the MEK freedom fighters trapped in Iraq. We’ve seen it in the growing opposition with the Iranian mullahs from other Islamic countries like Saudi Arabia and Egypt. We see it with the 75 of my colleagues here in the House who co-sponsored H.Res.374 to reaffirm our committed support for the Iranian people’s desire for a democratic, secular, and non-nuclear Republic of Iran.
Iran is one of the oldest and greatest civilizations in the history of mankind. Yet it has been oppressed and plundered by a gang of thugs who have appointed themselves the rulers of Iran. Their claim on power is illegitimate and the time to topple them is approaching. And their desperation is showing both at home and abroad. At home, their reign of terror against their own people is damning proof that their only claim to power is by murder, brute force, and oppression.
And abroad, their wanton attacks against peaceful commerce; their sponsorship and direction of international terrorists, their increasingly hysterical threats against their neighbors, and most recently their unprovoked attack on an American drone in international airspace are all unmistakable signs of desperation and panic.
People of Iran, take courage and take confidence. Your cause is just, you’re not fighting alone, and in the full measure of time just causes always prevail. The entire free world is witness to your struggle and history foretells your impending triumph with these words, sic semper tyrannies thus always with tyrants. What Churchill once said of Poland can today be said of Persia, that her soul is indestructible and that she will rise again like a rock, which may for a while be submerged by a tidal wave but which remains a rock.
Your fortitude and courage is inspiring the admiration and support of people around the world. And even through the difficulty and danger of the present, you are already writing the next chapter of human civilization. Just when events seem darkest, the people of Iran push these dictators off of their pedestals and restored their nation as a beacon of freedom and justice, enlightenment and learning, tolerance and prosperity, as it was in the days of old and as it will be again in the bright days ahead. The Iranian people know it and the world know it.
We are fast approaching one of those rare moments of history when the world can change overnight. Those who love and cherish freedom in our country and throughout the world stand with you. And so do the many generations of Iranians yet to come who will celebrate and honor everything that each of you has done in this generation to restore to them the prosperity, happiness, and dignity that freedom makes possible and that is their right. God bless you all.
Former Gov. Bill Richardson
I have a question for you. Are you for democracy in Iran? Are you for the MEK and the NCRI? What is the democratic alternative in Iran? Say it louder. I want to tell you how proud I am. I’ve been with you for ten years. But I’m still very young. And I want to tell you the strength of the movement is an American, and I know there are a lot of Iranian Americans, it’s bipartisan.
It’s Democrats and Republicans. And you’ve heard today from Republican and Democratic leaders. But as a Democrat, I want to take pride in mentioning to you that there was one Democratic that contributed enormously to the 3,000 going to Tirana where they’re protected today. And that was in a Democratic administration but led by Senator Robert Torricelli. Give him a big hand.
You heard Mrs. Rajavi’s statement. I’m going to talk positive. You know, we’ve had the general, we’ve had so many talk about the issues relating to the regime. We need a new regime. And that regime is you, the MEK, NCRI, the alternative. And I’m going to tell you why. I’m going to tell you why.
First, it’s a strong organization with a lot of competence, with a lot of commitment, with a lot of leadership abilities. Number two, the top leader, bipartisan, and Mrs. Rajavi is a great leader. And I’ll go through the ten points that she talked about. Number three, the platform. In other words, as young people, as those of you here, what do you stand for? You stand for a free Iran. But you stand for democracy. You stand for human rights.
You have a platform, you have a plan. Beware of politicians that don’t have a plan, that just talk without what they stand for. What else? Take risks. This community, the MEK, takes risks. Being targeted in Europe and America. Taking risk on behalf of people, of freedom, of democracy. Taking on the regime. Talking about the issues in Iran. We know the regime. Economic problems, corruption, huge inflation, violations of human rights, executions, no democracy, attacking America.
But what you represent, those of you that have come from around the country and around the world, is the future. And you have international support. I’ve been to events in Paris, all around the world, that show the international support of legislators, of countries, of movements. You’re on the right side of history, right?
So, I’m going to conclude with a ten-point plan because I want you to listen to it, because it sounds very much, most of it, like America.
It sounds like democracy. And I want you to absorb what this ten-point plan means because if there’s a free Iran and a free election, this is what will happen.
First, universal suffrage. The future decided by the ballot, not by dictatorships. That’s number one. Number two, democracy, human rights. Standing for freedom of assembly, freedom of speech. Standing for human rights of people. Number three, abolition of the death penalty. No executions. A judicial system that works.
Number four, separation of church and state. Making sure that religious minorities, all kinds of human rights minorities, are protected. No matter who you are, no matter where you came from. Number five, gender equality with women being in leadership positions. More leadership positions than exist today. All right, let’s not get carried away—no, I’m kidding. I think this is the strength of this movement, the women that for years have done the political work, the suffering, dealing with their families, and this is a community that supports gender equality and human rights and especially women in leadership positions. Respect for the rule of law and justice. Respect for a constitution. The rights of human beings. Protecting gender equality no matter who you are. Also, international statutes. A respect for the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in the United Nations charter.
How about that? That is strength. That is human rights. That is the State Department. That is America’s foreign policy. That is a foreign policy that every nation that signs the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Recognizing private property. Market economies. Entrepreneurship. Women businesses. Businesses that flourish. Agriculture. Those neglected economic cycles that have taken place in Iran. And then finally, a non-nuclear Iran. Free of nuclear weapons.
So, I’ve been with you for a long time and I’ll always be with you. But I want to tell you again, as I see the crowds, I see the younger people, I see the future, I see an America, I see states. And by the way, the best-looking Iranian American here is a family from the state, my state of New Mexico, and they’re back here…But you had extraordinary speakers and leaders here that shows the strength of your movement. Now, I’m going to get to the best part of my speech, the end. Thank you
Ret. General Jack Keane
Hello, Iran. Hello, the Iranian people. And my fellow Americans. 2018, 2018 was a major turning point for Iran.
Why? The United States pulled out of the nuclear deal and for the first time in 39 years, put Iran on notice. Iran, you’re malign and aggressive behavior in the Middle East region is now going to be held accountable. Using your proxies to drive the wars in Syria, and Yemen, must stop. Providing Hamas and Hezbollah with rockets and missiles to attack Israel must stop. Undermining the government of Iraq must stop. Undermining other governments in the region must stop. Number two, Iran building ballistic missiles must stop. And number three, Iran, you must stop sponsoring terrorism. And Iran, you cannot, you cannot enrich uranium and develop a path to a nuclear weapon.
And Iran, you must, must stop repressing your people.
As such, the United States, from this building behind us, has imposed the toughest sanctions in 39 years, denying Iran access to the dollar dominated financial market in the world today, cutting off Iran’s export of oil and other commodities, and stopping all waivers. And something we have said for years from similar podiums and microphones, the United States designated the IRGC as a terrorist organization. What has happened? Iran’s economy is in recession. It is contracted 6%. The currency has significantly devalued. Unemployment is skyrocketing. As you know, there are food shortages and power outages and there’s growing civil unrest. And, and the Iranian people are correctly blaming Iran, not the United States.
The maximum pressure campaign is working. Iran is choking on the sanctions. Iran’s recent provocations tell the story, disrupting the oil flow in the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman, attacking Saudi Arabia pipeline and its airport, and attacking a U.S. drone just recently. These provocations have two purposes. One, to leverage the international community to pressure the United States to remove the sanctions. Two, to convince the countries in the region that the United States cannot protect them. Both of those will fail. The United States will not back down.
To those who say the United States is provoking this crisis, you don’t know the facts. It is Iran who blew up two U.S. embassies in Lebanon and Kuwait, killing hundreds. It is Iran who blew up two U.S. military barracks in Lebanon and Saudi Arabi, killing hundreds. It is Iran who trained Iraqi Shia militia to kill Americans in Iraq with advance penetration weapons, killing hundreds.
It is Iran who continues to hold hostages. It is Iran who runs and funds the Syrian and Yemen civil wars, causing hundreds of thousands of deaths and the human catastrophe. And it is Iran who provides rockets and missiles for Hamas and Hezbollah. And it is Iran who is now disrupting the shipping lanes and the flow of oil. And it is of course Iran who wants to dominate and control the Middle East. And yes, it is Iran who continues to repress their own people.
The United States will do what?
The United States will lead a coalition of nations to keep the shipping lanes open in the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman. That will unfold in the days ahead. United States will not, I say again not tolerate Iran enriching uranium to a threshold capability and certainly to a nuclear capability.
This will be a redline for the United States. The United States will not ease off on sanctions until Iran changes.
There has never been a time when an American president has been so committed to fundamental change in Iran.
Despite the current crisis, the very best path Iran has been on in the 39 years is right before us. So, keep up your fight. Keep up your resistance. Keep up your hope. Keep up your courage. Your voices for freedom are heard. T
he American people and America stands behind you and the Iranian people, stronger than ever before. We will be there with you until you get your homeland and your freedom back. God bless you. God bless the Iranian people. And God bless America. Thank you very much.
Former Senator Robert Torricelli (D-NJ)
“There are many things that I love about America. And one of them is our optimism, our belief in freedom, our belief in peace. These are great qualities of America. But sometimes, sometimes, Mr. Secretary and Mr. President, we need to accept reality. The reality is the mullahs will never change, they will develop nuclear weapons, they will spread terror, they will never let the Iranian people go. We need regime change and we need it now.
And yet, our friends in the American government ask if the regime changes where will new leadership come? It will come from millions of people in the diaspora around the world. It will come from young people in the streets of Tehran. It will come from every village in Iran. The Iranian people are talented by their nature. They are skilled. They are educated. They can run their country in freedom. They don’t need the mullahs to run their country.
Today, in every village in Iran, in every section of every city, there are people putting their lives on the line holding up posters, painting signs, being in demonstrations, making their voices be heard for a free Iran. America, there is a new regime. It is the people of Iran themselves. Join with us in ending this tyranny. End this terror. Let Iran be free. To our friends in Europe and the United Nations, if Iran were a nation in Europe you wouldn’t tolerate the mullahs, the theocracy, the death, the jailing, the executions, the terrorism. You wouldn’t tolerate it for a minute…
The Iranian people deserve what all people deserve, a free country of their own. Secretary Pompeo, President Trump, we stand with you in representing this country, its best values, its finest hopes. But in this struggle we ask only this.
As you stand for the best in America, stand for the best of the Iranian people who want nothing more than a future for their children and to live a free life. We stand with you, Mr. Secretary, Mr. President, please stand with us.”
Dr. Ramesh Sepehrad OIAC Advisory Board
My fellow Iranian-Americans, my name is Ramesh Sepehrad, a scholar practitioner from George Mason University and a proud member of advisory board for the Iranian American Organizations. Let me begin in the name of those fallen from freedom.
Political prisoners, mothers who have lost their sons and daughters, children who have lost their parents on this extraordinary day, anniversary of the June 20th, 38 years after the bloody crackdown that marked the day of resistance in Iran.
I am so proud to stand here with the leaders and representatives of the Iran-American Communities from different states who say in one voice that the change in Iran is inevitable by the Iranian people. The sole alternative to the Iranian regime is the National Council of Resistance of Iran.
For years, previous administrations, both Republicans and Democrats, offered goodwill gestures. Some even marginalized our voices and looked the other way when our loved ones were attacked and killed in Camp Ashraf. But all those have failed. It only proved that the Iranian mullahs have endless appetite for incentive without changing their behavior.
There is, however, a new understanding in place. The United States government now recognizes and calls out the 40 years of failure by the mullahs. It calls out the crimes and corruption of the Iranian regime, especially those directly tied to Khamenei, Rouhani, and the IRGC. The U.S. pressure on the mullahs is working and for all those that say sanctions are hurting the Iranian people, we say the Iranian regime is hurting them more.
And that is why the people are shouting in the streets that our enemy is here, they lie when they say it’s U.S. And for those who say Iran would become another Syria if the mullahs were to be toppled, we say the mullahs are the one who propped up the criminal regime of Assad. Once Iran is free, Middle East will be a better chance for peace and stability. Leave Syria alone, that’s what the people of Iran say. Neither Gaza nor Lebanon, I give my life for Iran.
The community has been on the forefront of representing the Iranian American voices. The American voices. We are the Iranian-American voices.
Unlike the discredited entities of the mullahs, our progress is of the Iranian people. We are proud, we are proud, we are so proud of the work that we do. We are so proud of the work that we do at the local, state and the national levels. Our members of Congress of both House and Senate, we are so proud to be working with them in a bipartisan fashion…
Let me close with what General Jones, the first National Security Advisor of President Obama said: “We are here to celebrate the National Council of Resistance of Iran.”
Rally Resolution & OIAC Youth Remarks
Mr. Amir Emadi, OIAC
As members of Iranian American Communities, representing 40 states, gathered in Washington DC on June 21, 2019, we express solidarity with the ongoing uprisings for regime change in Iran, call for a firm policy against the Iranian regime, and seek accountability for the regime’s rulers for their 40 years of repression, corruption and terror. We are in full support of the protests and nationwide strikes which are enduring, and expanding because of the Mujehedin-e-Khale (MEK) role and their Resistance Units inside Iran.
The Iranian people consider the regime as being responsible for their misery, and as recent as June 18, 2019, protesters in Tehran chanted “let go of war mongering and think of us” clearly putting the blame on the Iranian regime. People chant “the enemy is right here; the mullahs lie when they say it is America.”
Therefore, our rally today in front of the White House and the State Department supports Maryam Rajavi’s 10-point plan for the future Iran and calls for the implementation of the following steps:
- Recognize the rights of Iranian people and their resilient resistance movement to change this regime.
- Recognize the only viable alternative to the Iranian regime, the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), which is well-organized, dedicated, visionary, democratic and led by a woman, Mrs. Maryam Rajavi.
- Increase sanctions on the regime and its officials including sanctioning Supreme Leader and his office for rights violations, and terrorism, the designation of the Ministry of Intelligence as a Foreign Terrorist Organization, and sanctioning Tehran’s entire energy industry, including the gas industry, as all such funds are used for funding repression and terrorism in the region.
- Hold Tehran rulers accountable for their terrorism, but most importantly for their rights violations, including the perpetrators and collaborators of the 1988 massacre of 30,000 political prisoners in Iran. Refer the Iranian regime’s human rights record to the United Nations Security Council.
Ideen Saiedian, OIAC Youth:
“Our message is as clear as the message of the Iranian youth: there are no reformists, there are no moderates, this entire theocratic dictatorship MUST GO.”
Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) –
Click to Watch Video Message
Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ): “Unfortunately, across the Middle East, Iran continues to threaten the national security and interests of the United States. It continues to pursue a belligerent, ballistic missile program…The people of Iran suffer under a repressive regime with absolutely no respect for basic human rights and no economic investment in their welfare… I will always support justice and human rights, peace and security and above all else, the rights of all Iranians to fundamental freedoms.”
Senator John Cornyn (R-TX): “As recent events have demonstrated, the Iranian authoritarian government is a dangerous and destabilizing regional influence that rules its people with an iron fist, suppressing their individual rights and subjecting them to humanitarian abuse. As the largest State sponsor of terror in the world, Iran has bankrolled terrorist organizations that have waged war and undermined regional stability for decades…In order to help the Iranian people, I believe that it is important for the United States to support the Administration’s ‘maximum pressure policy. A policy that promotes freedom and individual rights of the people while taking every step necessary to liberate them from the regime’s oppressive rule.”
Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-NY): “The Iranian people are clearly fed up with Iran’s decades long dictatorial regime’s brutal domestic tactics, dangerous foreign policy, and non-existent economic progress. Instead of caring for its own people, the Iranian regime has dedicated itself to maintaining its title as the world’s largest state sponsor of terror, seeking to appease domestic hardliners who keep them in power. As everyday Iranians have expressed outrage over their government’s misplaced priorities, the U.S. should recognize the inherent right of these everyday Iranians and their noble quest for a better future and free, peaceful nation. We have been down this road before. Millions of Iranians are desperate right now to turn the tide in Tehran and all throughout Iran.”
Congressman Louie Gohmert (R-TX): I am Congressman Louie Gohmert، here in the United States، Washington DC، and I wanted to make sure that the people of Iran، that you understand you have people that care deeply about what is going on in Iran. Many around the world know the Iranian leadership is the biggest state sponsor of terrorism in the world; biggest sponsor of terrorism. But what a lot of people don’t understand is the fact that you the people of Iran are suffering the same terror from those same leaders. It is outrages what has been allowed to go on in the incredible beautiful country of Iran، such wonderful people، people we care deeply about. But don’t give up hope. There are people who care about you. There are people that want to see you have the chance to govern yourself. There are people that want to make your government accountable for the tens of thousands of people that have been killed at their hands. The torture، the outrageous improprieties against the people of Iran themselves، not to mention the rest of the world.
So we appreciate you، we pray for you، and we hope that we can work together at some point in the future in order to make your life much more bearable and have people that you want leading you، that you select to lead you and not people that are driven by some underlined purpose from centuries ago that is mean، it is uncivilized really. You are the heart of civilization، we want to see you enjoy the area the life that you should have، so take heart، you got many people that care about you and want to help and we look forward to the opportunity at some point in the future to make your dreams your hope for peace more of a reality. When you have leaders who are not all about themselves but are about the people of whom they lead. God bless you.
Congressman Kenny Marchant (R-TX): “I strongly support the peaceful protest taking place today in Washington, DC against the current regime in Iran. For too long Iranian citizens have been oppressed by a radical and corrupt government that has prioritized the proliferation of violence and terrorism over the wellbeing of its own people. I stand with these protesters as they speak out against the regime’s brazen violations of international law and will continue to work with my colleagues in the House and with the administration toward the goal of a secular, democratic, and non-nuclear Iran.”
Congressman Van Taylor (R-TX): I am Van Taylor، United States Congressman for the third congressional district of Texas. I want to thank all of you for participating today. I served as the United States Marine in Iraq and I saw firsthand the aggressive actions of the current regime in the country of Iran. And Iran for thirty years has been expanding its reach as it has participated in violent actions across the Middle East, whether it’s in Yemen، in Iraq, In Syria, in Beirut, or in the West Bank Iran continues to expand its reach to be the largest sponsor of terrorism in the world. I look forward to a time where we have a regime in Iran that no longer sponsors terror, which no longer oppresses its own citizens and takes away their civil rights.
Media Coverage (Dozens of national and international media outlets covered the event. Examples have been included below)
Vice President Michael Pence on CBC Face the Nation, June 23, 2019 – “ What we want to do is to stand with the Iranian people, thousands of which gathered in the streets outside the White House…
WASHINGTON (AP), June 22, 2019 – Supporters of an Iranian exile group with ties to some of … the words “Free Iran,” more than 1,000 members of the Mujahedeen-e-Khalq…
Fox News – June 22, 2019 – Eric Shawn: “Down with the terrorist regime in Iran!” – Protesters call for democracy and tighter sanctions against Tehran.
Associated Press TV – June 21, 2019 – Click to watch video.
CBS News, June 21, 2019-Iranian-Americans march, rally near White House for regime change in Iran