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Freedom Collection

Interviews with Mohsen Sazegara

Interviewed February 4, 2010

You know, the reaction of the regime, which they could forecast that. I mean we knew that before the election, they had some news that they have talked to each other. That we go for– you know– that coup d´état and we will kill 200 people and imprison 2,000 people, and Iranians will sit down and everything will be suppressed.

This is what they calculated. But what they didn´t know about the tactics of the movement was– Iranians started to, you know, go ahead and come back. You know, one step ahead, two steps back. The first stage, the movement started to use the days of the regime. When I say “days of the regime,” are the ceremony days of regime, which, you know, regime invites the people for governmental marches. For instance, Quds Day, the last Friday of Ramadan to support the Palestinian against Israel.

Movement used these days to come to the street to shout for the movement slogans. After awhile these days were not safe for the people. You know, at the first actions, the days of regime were safe because they didn´t want to attack to the people, because they invited the people come to the streets.

But after three or four two or three month, regime started to not to respect even it´s own days. So, it was an agreement inside the movement not to go for any strict protests anymore. But save the lives and mobilize the people for other types of tactics. Non-cooperative tactics. Not to cooperate with regime. Boycotting, going for strikes. And wearing out the regime. Especially the suppression machine of regime, which is Revolutionary Guard.

And now we are in this stage of the movement. So I think that the impact of regime´s brutality was the legitimation of regime ins– inside Iran and in international community. And growing up, a kind of hatred against regime. The poll shows– the independent researchers– in Iran, that in summer 2009– about 68 percent of people believe that this regime should go– 64 percent. But right now the last poll shows that 94 percent of the people say that this regime should go.

You know, huge in very steep slope for the graph of the– you know– growth of unpopularity of regime, the legitimation of the regime. That was the main result of 15 month of brutality of regime. And I believe that in nonviolent movements– the legitimation is very important. The most important step, like Russian dolls. The other tactics and the other strategies will come out of this most important step. I mean the legitimation of the regime.

Non-cooperative tactics are boycotting the goods. Not paying the taxes. Not going to work. Civil disobedience. There are lots of tactics in this category. But the movement on these days is, first of all working on non-cooperative tactics, which will be based on first the economic crisis of the country.

Because as you know, the government of Ahmadinejad has created– because of the mismanagement, they have created lots of troubles in the economy of the country. A corrupted economy– many of the– many parts of the Revolutionary Guard– are corrupted now. They are involved in more than 800 big companies of Iran and more than 1,500 big projects of the country.

And this qualification, you know, has created lots of corruption in Iran. A kind of economy chaos in Iran. And international sanctions, which has started, especially that part of the sanctions which is targeted to Revolutionary Guard. It has been useful for the movement to squeeze the Revolutionary Guard to create cracks and some fissures inside Revolutionary Guard.

So, in this stage of revol– movement– we are thinking about– the tactics, which will be based on economy crisis in Iran, and from inside Iran is targeted toward Revolutionary Guard. I think that– the next move now– it´s November 5. November 5th, 2010. But– during not more than a month, the next stage of the movement will be started– which is going to– protest– of– increase of some governmental goods, like gasoline in Iran.

Because the government is going to increase the price of gasoline, increase the price of bread, electricity, gas, and several other– goods. So the tactics will go toward boycotting them, to protest them, to– not cooperate with the regime. And especially target on the goods, which are at the hands of Revolutionary Guard.