By ncr-iran Staff
The Free Iran Gathering, organised by the main Iranian opposition, the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), kicked off today in Paris, with a panel entitled “Iran: Prospect for Change”, where six distinguished politicians and media personalities came to the decision that supporting the Iranian people should be the policy of the international community.
The panel, chaired by Ambassador Lincoln Bloomfield, kicked off at 11 am local time with a discussion about the fraudulent nuclear deal, which Donald Trump withdrew from in May, and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s list of 12 demands for a new nuclear deal with Iran.
Support the Iranian people
During the course of the panel, there were many ways suggested to help the Iranian people achieve regime change in Iran, which is their true desire.
Linda Chavez, former Director of the White House public liaison, and Ambassador Adam Ereli both said that the US should be able to tell ordinary Iranians from the Regime’s operatives.
Bloomfield pointed out that the last time the US had attempted to make a distinction between the good Iranians and the bad Iranians; they had made a mistake, by placing the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) on the terrorist list to appease the mullahs.
Well, now it seems like the US should make up for that error.
It was also suggested that the US and the West could do more to increase the flow of free, unbiased information in Iran, where so much information is censored by the mullahs and many Iranians are being prevented from accessing the internet or communication apps.
Chavez said that by doing this, through both formal and informal means, we would increase the Iranian people’s desire to stand up and demand change because they could see an alternative to the mullah’s regime.
She said: “The Iranian people will stand up for themselves and the American people should be with them.”
Ereli agreed that the US should have a strategy to get information to the Iranian people.
Panel Discussion: Policy on #Iran. #FreeIran2018 https://www.pscp.tv/w/bgXtATQyODMwNzN8MXlvSk1WUU9PUVh4UWqI0DIIRED62aCsYfRs6kh3E_ccGifEmulpPyN1Z_ev …
Panel Discussion: Policy on #Iran. #FreeIran2018
Panel Discussion: Policy on #Iran. #FreeIran2018 https://www.pscp.tv/w/bgX7hTQyODMwNzN8MXJteFBObFZQd25HTiUbXdSESbb-HWaYoRsdsiPDkHFnM8XS8RPnRLZXR9CI …
Panel Discussion: Policy on #Iran. #FreeIran2018
It was also agreed that the Trump administration, as well as others around the world, could be doing more to talk about and highlight the current protests in Iran, which are getting far less media coverage than they should.
Chavez said: “I would like to hear more support from the White House and others in this administration on the current Iranian protests. The US has, since WW2, been invested in spreading democracy and that is important.”
Ereli agreed with this, noting that the US should stand up and pledge its support for the Iranian Regime.
While Maria S. Ryan, President and CEO of Cottage Hospital in New Hampshire, said that we should do more to educate the American people about what is happening in Iran.
Supporting the Iranian Resistance
Along with supporting the Iranian people, through all of these various methods listed above, the panellists agreed that the international community should support the Iranian groups that are fighting for a Free Iran.
Chavez said that she would like the Trump administration to reach out further to the Iranian Resistance, including the NCRI, the MEK and its President Maryam Rajavi. She advised that the US seek out the Iranian Resistance’s plan for a Free Iran.
Ryan said that the US could take a “bold” stance by supporting the Iranian Resistance and recognising Maryam Rajavi as the President of the NCRI and the President-elect of Iran. She then cited Maryam Rajavi’s 10-point-plan for a Free Iran, which was recently published in the New York Times, as evidence of the Iranian Resistance’s liberal, democratic government.
Bloomfield, former Assistant Secretary of State for Military Affairs, said that the NCRI is the one group that is not tainted by affiliation with the Iranian Regime, therefore they deserve US support.
Increasing the pressure on the Regime
Along with the importance of supporting the Iranian people and their Resistance, the panellists also agreed that the West must increase pressure on the Iranian Regime in order to stop the mullahs from their destructive ways.
Giulio Terzi, former Foreign Minister of Italy and Ambassador to the UN, said that the Iranian Regime has been stealing from its people by placing more money into their regional aggression, their suppressive security forces (including the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC)), and their support for terrorism.
But dealing with the Iranian Regime is urgent, according to former US Senator Robert Torricelli, who said that we must deal with Iran’s outlaw regime now.
So, how can the West deal with Iran? Well, there were many actions advocated, most notably stronger sanctions against the mullahs and shutting the Regime out of the international community.
Ereli outlined this in his policy recommendations for the Trump administration, as he said that putting pressure on the regime and doubling down on sanctions is the only way to help bring down the Regime. He advised stricter enforcement for the sanctions, including cutting Iran off from the international banking systems and oil market, as well as expanding the international coalition to isolate Iran. Expanding this coalition means getting Europe on side, as well as the Gulf States and Russia who are already part of the coalition.
He said that putting pressure on the Regime had already started exposing cracks in the façade and that increasing pressure would cause the Regime to break.
Paulo Casaca, the former member of European Parliament, advised that getting Europe on side might be hard, due to a “thick corruption”. He said that the Iranian GDP did not justify Europe’s attempts to save the nuclear deal, so there must be something going on “under the table”.
He said that the IRGC was controlling the Iranian economy, so Europe should dispense trading with them, as it was “lunacy” to endanger world peace and the safety of the Iranian people in this way.
Ryan also advocated for further economic sanctions, as she praised the people coming out to protest in Iran at the lack of human rights.
Bloomfield noted that no one on the panel was advocating military action, only support for the Iranian people and their resistance, along with diplomatic measures.