My apologies to my readers for my absence of two weeks. I have been translating material for the Greens and three lengthy articles by one of the leaders of the Greens.
Now for the subject at hand:
The Tehran Aide to the Deputy Revolutionary Attorney General: The Recent Events and Chaos Had Been Planned in Advance
Fars News Service: The Tehran Deputy Revolutionary Attorney General, in reading the text of the charges against the accused in the defeated project of a velvet coup d’état, announced: According to the documents available and the confirmed confessions of the accused, the recent events and the riots had been planned in advance and, according to the indictment presented by the Deputy Revolutionary Attorney General on behalf of the Attorney General, they proceeded according to a timetable and the stages of a velvet coup.
According to Fars News Service’s political correspondent, the text of the charges by Abdor-Reza Mojtaba, Tehran Aide the Revolutionary General Prosecutor representing the Attorney General is as follows:
In the name of Allah, the Merciful, the Compassionate
The text of the Tehran judiciary’s charges against the defendants in the defeated project for a velvet coup:
“When We make mankind taste of some mercy after adversity has touched them Behold! they take to plotting against our Signs! Say: “Swifter to plan is Allah!” Verily Our messengers record all the plots that you make!” (Koran, Yunos 21)
Honorable President of the Tehran Islamic Revolutionary Court
Peace be on you.
As you have been apprised, the wise Leader of the revolution, with his Imam-like wisdom, stated that the aware nation of Islamic Iran has created an astonishing and unprecedented epic by their unusual presence at the ballot boxes during the elections for the tenth term of the presidency, which showed the Iranian nation’s political maturity, revolutionary, powerful and civil capacity, and determined visage in a beautiful and glorious display before the eyes of the world.
Any fair-minded person could comfortably witness the great accomplishments of this huge epic in various political, cultural, social, and economic dimensions on the domestic and international level.
First, these elections have been transformed into a display of true democracy which inspires pride and it brought a message to the world that the Islamic Republic of Iran is one of the safest and most stable countries for investment and advancing economic projects.
Second, in the realm of international relations, this vast national support increases the power of bargaining for and winning the legitimate rights of the sovereign people of Islamic Iran to a high level and has raised our country’s success in the region and the world to silence [literally, to cut out the tongues of] those who make lying claims about freedom, democracy, and human rights. And so, these Iranian statesmen and masters of diplomacy can from now on, can perform their roles on the regional and world stage and in exchanges with the countries of the world with an increasing decisiveness and based on wisdom, splendor, and the nation’s interests better than ever.
Third, the deep impact of this conscious presence on the way the people of the world, particularly its outstanding personalities, look at the Iranian people’s rich culture and political feelings, which arise out of their Islamic and revolutionary beliefs, has more than ever drawn the attention of the nations’ public opinion to the efficacy of the model of religious democracy.
Fourth, since popular support is considered one of the most important ingredients of the national security of the sacred Islamic Republican system, the participation of 85% of the people [in the elections] has indubitably played an irreplaceable role in the stabilization of the foundations of national security, the government which appeared from this enthusiastic and passionate majority will be more powerful than in the past on the domestic, regional, and international scene, and this power will be as a vast national wealth in solving domestic and foreign problems and increasing and advancing our dear Islamic country more each day.
The defeated and despondent enemy immediately went into action and set off a chain of chaos and riots in Tehran through the mobilization of its propagandist, political, and local agents. Our dear compatriots suffered many losses of life, property, and mental health as a result. According to documents which we have obtained and the confirmed confessions of the accused, the occurrence of these events was completely planned in advance and proceeded according to a timetable and the stages of a velvet coup in such a way that more than 100 of the 198 events were executed in accordance with the instructions of Gene Sharp for a velvet coup.
Honorable president of the court.
A velvet coup is a kind of coup which has the same goals of a military coup but totally different in methods and means.
In this connection, Mr. Robert Helvey, a retired CIA officer and a student of Dr. Gene Sharp, writes in his book titled On Strategic Nonviolent Conflict: Thinking About the Fundamentals, “Non-violent conflict [i.e., that same velvet coup—Mojtaba] does not have any special difference with military conflict except that the weapon used in it is different and unique to this technique.” [not from the original]
Another of the differences between a velvet coup and a military coup is in the way it is formed from start to finish and its long duration, which can at times last a decade or more.
The most important point which must be noted concerning a velvet coup is that the theoreticians bought by the West’s spy and intelligence services have developed this method at the orders of their commanders to get World Arrogance out of its practical dead end by overthrowing independent systems or systems which are not in alignment with the West’s hegemony and lust for domination. It is the result of years of research and fieldwork in various coup-prone countries. This technique of fomenting coups is so planned out that by employing so-called civil and long-term methods, it can stealthily and quietly complete the stages of the velvet revolution without attracting serious attention among the people or the political systems of the countries. By the time the political systems come to their senses, the velvet coup has usually reached its final stage and the probability of its success has greatly increased.
Years ago, numerous foundations and institutions came into existence through the Western countries’ spy agencies and other governmental institutions which, through a division of organizational labor and concentration on various missions, were tasked with the joint purpose of implementing a velvet coup project. The most important of these institutions and foundations are the Soros Foundation (the Open Society Institute), the Rockefeller Institute, the Ford Foundation, the German Marshall Fund, Freedom House, the American Council on Foreign Relations, the German Council on Foreign Relations, and the Centre for Democracy Studies of Britain.
In further elucidating this issue, it is necessary to point to the statements of a spy who is now in detention and who had returned to Iran with the aim of fulfilling a role in the elections for the tenth term of the presidency.
He says, “In the voyage I made to Israel, I became familiar with an institution called MEMRI which belongs to the United States, but is based in Israel and whose mission it is to monitor the Middle Eastern media. This institution’s task is to struggle against anti-Israeli activities which are arising in other countries. It pursues a project whose goal is to support the reformists in the Islamic world, including Iran. The man in charge of this project is an old intelligence officer in the Israeli army whom I visited. In this meeting, he told me, ‘Our task is to nourish and spread the ideas of thinkers like Abdol-Karim Sorush in Iran.’”
This spy continued, “Another of these active institutions is the Dutch agency Hivos [Thank you “Goseling” from Enduring America.], with whose officers I had meetings. This institution had good relations with institutions and NGOs inside Iran and even spent 10 million Euros towards the end of Khatami’s presidency in Iran, most of which was given to the women’s movement. Hivos got its budget from bribes from Dutch oil companies which wanted to evade paying taxes.”
Concerning Radio Free Europe, the above-mentioned said, “Radio Free Europe, like many of the soft coup institutions, began its work during the Cold War and are connected with the CIA. During the Cold War, the Americans used politics, culture, and media and the cover of beautiful words like democracy and freedom and human rights to pressure the Soviets. Many of the institutions which are active at present in the field of soft coups are left over from that time, and Radio Free Europe is of this type. The Persian section of this radio is active under the name Radio Farda. This radio covers [uses the word “pushesh”, a literal translation of an American idiom] many of the protests and vastly exaggerates them.”
This spy continued, discussing another of the soft coup institutions called the Berkman [Center], saying, “Global Voices is under the purview of an institution called the Berkman Center in Harvard University. This project began in 2004 and I participated in its first meeting in Harvard. The goal of this project was to concentrate on all the bloggers of the world, especially the anti-American countries like Iran, to be able to achieve its purposes, i.e., to bring about a psychological war in these countries.
“The Soros Foundation, which contributes to most NGOs, provided financial backing for this project. This project’s manager is someone named Ethan Zuckerman. He is an American who had previously worked in the Soros Foundation. He has worked hard on using the internet for soft coups in various countries and also has ties with American security-intelligence institutes.”
He continued, “The Berkman Center is managed by someone named John Palfrey, who himself claims that his uncle is Kermit Roosevelt, who organized the 28 Mordad Coup.”
The above-mentioned added, referring to America’s role in planning soft coups, “America uses various theoreticians to plan soft coups, such as Gene Sharp, who spent fifty years of his life in his foundation to plan how to make know governments’ weak points for a soft coup. This foundation’s website offers instructions in some twenty to thirty1 of the living languages of the world in the methods of peaceful resistance. Of course, these languages are not German, French, or Spanish, but Burmese, Chinese, Arabic, Persian, etc., languages which the Americans would love the countries in to have soft revolution.2
“Other people, such as Mark Palmer, the president of the Konos Foundation,3 have also done much research about Iran. Two or three years ago, he even organized classes and directly invited activists of the 2 Khordad movement like Amad Baqi, and taught them the stages of a soft coup.”
Honorable President of the Court.
So far, the velvet coup project has been implemented in several countries and has generally been successful, from Georgia, Poland, the Czech Republic, Croatia, Serbia, the Ukraine, and Kirgizstan. In most of these countries, the velvet coups came in the form of an election and have much in common with the project of the defeated velvet coup of Iran, whose final stage was set off under the excuse of the elections to the tenth term of the presidency. Of course, this conspiracy was crushed thanks to the awake and ever-present people’s alertness and our country’s powerful security and policy institutions’ decisive and timely treatment.
The arrested spy answered the question, “What model did America use for the velvet coup in Iran,” by saying: “This model was based on elections and began at least two years before the elections were held. They first begin with a plan and choose a candidate for themselves. For example, Mr. [Mikheil] Saakashvili, the current president of Georgia, has without a doubt not simply emerged in the world of politics. Rather, he received money from Fulbright, which is associated with the American Foreign Ministry. He has studied for years in this country and was trained for these days. After determining the candidate they want, they pour vast sums of social capital on him. In this way, supporters of this candidate set about educating the people through a network, with the trademark Gold Quest, which is a standard way of recruiting to campaigns. After this stage, they choose a graphic and color for this candidate and begin to prepare public opinion to vote for him. On the other hand, they prepare themselves before the elections so that if they lose, they begin to cast doubts upon the elections and announce that there had been fraud and bring the government’s legitimacy under question and begin to hold strikes and, ultimately, have the elections nullified or have the elections held again under international supervision, in which their candidate will win.”
The above-mentioned continued, “This has been done in Georgia, Serbia, Ukraine, and Croatia and succeeded. It is worth noting that the same educational texts which were used in Serbia have been translated into Persian and used in Iran with minor changes.4 These matters depend on the society’s culture, customs, and religion. The most important factor for executing this revolution is the youth, who are a good investment. They count on the youth’s energy, since they are the only people who devote two or three months of their lives without money for the sake of elections.”
He added, “Iran’s velvet revolution is very similar to the Serbian velvet revolution. In that country, a student group called the Otpor [Resistance] began recruiting, which is very similar to the Green Wave in Iran. In the educational brochure which is posted on the Albert Einstein [Institution] site, under the title of “Difficult situation” which covers the issues of the greatest strategic importance that places governments in the position in which they cannot confront the protesters. It says that the protests must be put under the cover of religious customs and activities like street processions must be held which no government can restrain. Ultimately, this educational brochure points to several frames of an educational film about the Serbian revolution which is even dubbed in Persian and posted on the web site.5
There is another brochure about how to seize a city’s sensitive locations and buildings. In it, it teaches protest groups how to take over important centers.
It is necessary here to indicate an important point in the court’s presence. The educational film about the Serbian velvet coup which had been translated into Persian was edited and read by someone named Nader Seddiqi.6 He is someone who first introduced Mr. Tajbakhsh to Messrs. Hajarian and Tajzadeh. Mr. Tajbakhsh said of Mr. Nader Seddiqi’s role, “It is not clear to me what Mr. Nader Seddiqi’s role was and who introduced me to him and at whose instructions he was responsible for having me meet with Messrs. Hajarian and Tajzadeh.” At the present time, the afore-mentioned [Nader Seddiqi] is a fugitive.
This arrested spy, whose name we do not mention out of security considerations, believes that a soft coup or that same velvet coup has three arms: intellectual, media, and executive. He explains as follows: “Each of the velvet coup’s arms are in contact with a number of American foundations and institutions, and indeed there has been a division of labor.”
He said in this connection, “In the coup triangle (the intellectual, the media, and the executive arms) each American institution performs a special activity and cooperates with a group of people in Iran. The most important of them is an institution called the Hoover Institution which is under the supervision of Stanford University and was formed in the context of the Cold War.
This foundation has a project called Democracy in Iran on its agenda, which is under the supervision of three security elements named Abbas Milani, Larry Diamond, and Michael McFaul.
Abbas Milani was arrested during the time of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi for activity in leftist groups. He then turned into an enthusiastic monarchist so that after living in Iran for a year or two after the revolution, he left the country for America where he wrote a number of books in which he praised the Pahlavi regime’s accomplishments. He gradually turned into one of the opposition’s leaders who was distinguished in this basic way from the rest: his relationship with domestic reformist elements.
This arrested spy added, “The Iran Democracy Project works on the Iranian people’s popular culture, like music, blogs, and sexual issues.
“The student wing of this foundation is very active and people like Ms. [Fatemeh] Haghighatjoo, Arash Naraghi (from Kian’s [corrected by Ramin Jahanbegloo; thanks] clique and close to Sorush) make speeches in their conferences. Within Iran, too, people who are close to the Executives of Construction Party cooperate with this institute. For example, [Mohammad] Atrianfar, in every magazine or newspaper in which he works, interviews Abbas Milani under cover of his being a historian. Abbas Milani’s importance for the CIA is greater than even Reza Pahlavi’s, since he has good relations with the reformists; he even maintains all of Akbar Ganji’s financial expenses outside the country.”7
1 Actually, 40.
2 It includes the languages of a number of American allies–Azerbaijani (in the Latin-based alphabet favored in the Republic of Azerbaijan), Danish, Dutch, French, German, Hebrew, Italian, Latvian, Norwegian, Polish, Spanish, and Swedish.
3 We have found no reference to such a foundation in any of his biographies.
4 This is the first I have heard about these pamphlets…
5 Since an article by the 9/11 “truther” Thierry Meyssan, the proprietor of Voltaire Net, appeared, more or less fringe figures in the cybersphere have followed Meyssan in attacking it. The Einstein Institution issued a (fairly tepid) statement by Dr. Sharp defending himself. A statement signed by such progressive luminaries as Howard Zinn and Noam Chomsky rejected the charges. For a list of some of the back and forth on this issue, see the Source Watch article on the Albert Einstein Institution. For a powerful and convincing rejoinder to the Institution’s critics, see this piece in the Huffington Post.
6 Extrapolating from a brief biography presented about him in the pro-government Fars News Agency website, he used to be in charge of preparing government bulletins about the People’s Mojahedin. He became disillusioned when Said Hajarian, one of the founders of the Ministry of Intelligence, was assassinated. He later gravitated, according to Fars News Agency, to Abol-Hasan Bani-Sadr.
7 I have no independent information about much of what is said in this article in general and the last paragraph in particular. As for Prof. Milani financing Mr. Ganji, if the former has indeed پول داد از جیب فتوت, show some generosity, it only raises him a little in my estimation and does nothing to discredit Mr. Ganji, who I know for certain lives a meager darvish’s existence.
The most obvious problem with this whole indictment is its reliance on the mercurial blogger Hossein Derakhshan. His blog has not loaded for at least a month, although it has not been taken down. Those familiar with his blogging style, and Google searches still indicate that the content of the blog has much to do with the indictment’s content. The reason for Derakhshan’s arrest have always been unclear. He is now referred to as “the spy,” although for whom he was supposed to have been spying–Israel or America, say–is left unclear. The most obvious difficulty with this material is, why a spy would have exerted so much effort to use a blog to blow the cover of his comrades. This in itself is enough to discredit the indictment.
The first three points in the introduction to the indictment are textbook examples of whistling past the graveyard. It is quite clear that the author is putting on a front knowing full well that he understands that the precise opposite of what he is saying is true.
The indictment states without a scintilla of proof that the demonstrations which erupted in the aftermath of the elections were foreign-inspired. Had the government wanted to restore order, all it had to do was follow its own constitution and have a transparent audit of the elections. The government instead chose to crush the peaceful and disciplined demonstrators with brute force, and therefore bears the full responsibility for the violence which followed.
The idea that minuscule organizations like the the Albert Einstein Institution and its pamphlets somehow bear responsibility for these events in Iran, as well as Serbia, Georgia, the Ukraine, etc., is uttlerly fantastic. The evidence in the indictment indicates the flimsiest of connections with the mass movement (someone who translated a pamphlet of theirs introduced some oppositionists to each other). It is, of course, true that the Americans did use mobilize and organize often elaborately-staged mass movements against its foes, but this was only possible because it had a well-entrenched network on the ground which could work more or less openly. This is just the opposite of what obtains in Iran. Moreover, it would be wrong to impute the overthrow of these governments to American efforts. The American game plan here was to organize and mobilize already-existing discontent which saturated the countries in question and put it behind candidates which it had groomed for the leadership.
Along the same lines, it is well-known that American quasi-governmental institutions have given a home to Iranian emigres and “friends” of Iranian democracy. Aside from giving often bad advice, it is never made clear in the indictment how any of them had anything to do with the mass movement currently challenging the Iranian government.
As an aside, much fun has been made of calling the Hoover Institution “Hoofer”. This, along with the mistaken transliteration of Hivos as “Hifos”, is an Arabism; “v” in Latin script is commonly transliterated as a “fa”; an Iranian would transcribe it as a “waw”.
Tags: Abbas Milani, Ali Khamenehi, Ali Khamenei, Amad Baqi, Berkman Center, Centre for Democracy Studies, Einstein Institute, Elections, Fatemeh Haghighatjou, Freedom House, Gene Sharp, German Marshall Fund, Gloval Voices, Hajarian, Hivos, Iran, Iran Democracy Project, Larry Diamond, Mark Palmer, MEMRI, Michael McFaul, Robert Helvey, Rockefelloer Institution, Said Mortazavi, Soros Foundation, Tajaadeh, Tehran, Thierry Meyssan, Velvet CoupSubscribe in a reader