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Freedom Collection

Interviews with Mohsen Sazegara

Interviewed February 4, 2010

We have not only inspired by the struggle of– nonviolent movements in other countries, but I can say that we have learned from them. We have tried to– learn the main ideas of nonviolent movements from Gandhi in India to Mandela in South Africa, to– Eastern Europe, to Chile, to Philippine, and many of other countries– that they have tried, they have had liberation movements based on civil resistance, peaceful resistance, and nonviolent– conflicts tactics.

Of course, like the other movements– we have had our own innovations, too. Some tactics are unique– in Iran, like shouting, “Allah Akbar” on the rooftop. In Chile, you know, people were banging on the pots and pans– pans. But the– in Iran they shout, “Allah Akbar,” for instance, or writing slogans on the notes on money besides to the walls– were writing on the notes was another thing which was used by Iranian activists.

And I think that the– the next moves in Iran– which I can talk about it now because it´s going to be announced– next week– which people are going to practice to the price of the gasoline by filling the tanks only one gallon every time, less than one gallon and so make a long cues in front of the gas stations– which is not illegal and government can´t– can´t do anything to them– is another innovation.

Because, for instance, in Chile they– slowed down the traffic. But in Iran, because that– the Green Movement wants to at the same time protest to the– increase of the prices, this tactic will help the people that– in every gas station, about 2,500 gas stations are all around the country, and there will be– a potential for protest because four-kilometers calculation shows that if only ten percent of Iranian join the– action then we will have four kilometers to five kilometers long cue of the– cars– in every gas station.

And– lots of– mess in the traffic, especially in big cities like Tehran or Mashhad, or– Isfahan. And there will be demonstrations everywhere without any– illegal action, which government can´t do anything. So, I mean, these types of actions are– Iranians´– special situation. But the main ideas– have been– inspired by or– or learned from other– countries, especially some good and famous thinkers of and founders of nonviolent– philosophy and nonviolent actions, like Gene Sharp, for instance.