Resistance Units and courageous youths keep alive the flames of November 2019 uprising
Maryam Rajavi's speech on the anniversary of the uprising in November 2019
My warmest greetings from here to the arisen people of Iran, and to all freedom-loving Iranians around the world,
We have come together on the anniversary of the November 2019 uprising to pay tribute to the courageous people and youths who initiated it. The flames they set alight will not be extinguished until the rule of the mullahs’ religious fascism burns down to ashes.
Hail to the proud martyrs of November 2019. They are among the Iranian people’s sacrifices for freedom and their blood will keep roaring until Iran is free. Hail to thousands of young people who were detained during their rebellion and endured vicious tortures to pave the way for freedom.
The flames of the November 2019 uprising suddenly erupted in upwards of 200 cities in 29 provinces. Courageous protesters attacked the clerical regime in numerous centers and bases of suppression. The world witnessed that the mullahs are just a small minority surrounded by the fire of the Iranian society’s rage and fury.
The uprising in November 2019 was neither indiscriminate nor spontaneous.
It had no ties with any of the regime’s factions and no connections to any world power or government.
On the contrary, the November uprising emanated from the Iranian people’s independent and liberating resolve.
It was a genuine example of a revolt and a struggle to overthrow the regime. Its driving force were the deprived but aware youths inspired by Resistance Units. It was an example which implemented the strategy of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran, the strategy of Resistance Units and Rebellious Cities.
Iran’s courageous youths were empty-handed in November but their pent-up anger torched the regime’s centers of plunder and suppression.
They gave their lives for freedom.
And hail to the Rebellious Cities;
Hail to Shiraz, the capital of rebellion and revolution;
Hail to Mahshahr and its combatant youths who fought courageously during the battles in the Koureha, Khor-Moussa and Be’sat townships;
Hail to Islamshahr whose rebellious youths conquered the IRGC’s main base and confiscated its guns;
Hail to Shahriar where courageous young men destroyed and trampled the statue of Khomeini’s ring;
Hail to Behbahan that triggered the uprising in November;
Hail to Sirjan, Isfahan, Khorramshahr, Arak, Tehran, Karaj, Fardis, Robat-Karim, Ghal’eh-Hassan-Khan, Kermanshah, Marivan, Sadra, Ahvaz and other cities whose combatant youths targeted or conquered at least 80 centers of the IRGC, Bassij and Police stations.
And hail to all the rebellious cities who shattered the reign of the mullahs. They have tasted freedom and are preparing themselves for future battles for freedom.
1,500 glowing and loving souls
We pay tribute to 1,500 martyrs of November 2019, each and every one of whom were admirable symbols of the Iranian people’s resolve to attain freedom.
What evidence could be more vivid, truthful and tenacious than these martyrs in attesting to the Iranian people’s determination to overthrow the regime?
What evidence could be more real and clearer than these martyrs in attesting that the regime has reached the end of its line?
Yes, in November 2019, the regime began killing protesters from the onset. The slaughter took on a much greater scale on November 17, upon Khamenei’s order. He told his suppressive agencies to “fulfill their duties” with regard to the protesters. This was an order for a ruthless massacre.
The regime’s suppressive forces targeted people in the streets, shooting them in the head and chest. They prevented treatment of the wounded, and used the clinics as traps to capture the injured.
They did not hesitate to kill children, murdering dozens of minors.
Physicians said the IRGC used live ammunition to target people.
In Shiraz, the State Security Force (SSF) used helicopters to gun down protesters in the streets.
In Mahshahr, they used heavy machine guns to fire at people.
In Gorgan, Revolutionary Guards shot a young man and struck him with an ax in public and before the eyes of people standing there in terror and shock.
The Iranian Resistance has so far obtained and published the names of 828 of these martyrs. The actual numbers however are certainly several thousand. It is common knowledge that the clerical regime denies the numbers of martyrs. It was the Iranian Resistance who was able to have the minimum number of 1,500 registered internationally.
Regardless of the numbers, what took place was a massacre. It was a crime against humanity. Khamenei, Rouhani, [secretary of the regime's Supreme Security Council, Ali] Shamkhani, IRGC and Bassij commanders, and SSF commanders must face justice for this massacre.
The cruelty exhibited by Khamenei and his ruthless IRGC knew no bounds. But despite their horrendous crimes, crackdown and terror, they could not extinguish the flames of uprisings and revolution.
The rebels came to the battlefield holding their flag high
They blossomed in a hopeless forest
They bore fruits on trees that had no roots
They sang with their blood-drenched throats
With a flourishing dedication
They pronounced their last word: freedom!
On January 8, 2020, Khamenei openly described the People’s Mojahedin members who have gathered in a European country as being responsible for the uprising and planning for it.
In saying so, the mullahs contradicted themselves when they said the PMOI members are old and that their organization had reached the end.
As the late singer of the Resistance Marjan sang, what will you do with the rejuvenating sprouts?
Protests will continue until the regime is overthrown
The stunning moment of Iran’s contemporary history which emerged during 48 hours of battle and uprising in November 2019, was not a fleeting meteoroid. Rather, it was a manifestation of the burning determination that will continue to carry on until the mullahs’ religious dictatorship is overthrown.
The annual declaration of the National Council of Resistance of Iran eloquently summed up the November 2019 uprising in 10 articles:
1. The uprising took shape very rapidly;
2. The slogans rapidly radicalized and targeted Khamenei;
3. The new generation, which was born under the rule of this regime and constantly exposed to the regime’s propaganda especially against the Resistance, formed the nucleus of this uprising;
4. Women played a stunning and effective role as vanguards and leaders of this uprising;
5. All the targets attacked and destroyed in this uprising were government and military centers tied to the regime;
6. The so-called reformist faction thoroughly supported the other faction in cracking down on the public. The “reformist faction” card was totally burned in this uprising.
7. In the streets and on the ground, there was no trace of supporters of the Shah and other claimants advocating “non-violence.”
8. The strategy of Resistance Units and Rebellious Cities passed its test on the ground.
9. Tactically, Resistance Units commanded the scene in the best possible manner.
10. Individuals, groups or media who had for years criticized the Iranian Resistance and its strategy and positions, refused to acknowledge that developments inside the country confirmed the veracity of this strategy.
This is why the impact of the November uprising will never diminish and this is why the November uprising is manifesting itself again on its anniversary, at the height of massive social readiness. This uprising will carry on until the regime is overthrown in its entirety.
A paralyzed and discredited regime
The present status of the clerical dictatorship could not be compared to any other time during the past 40 years.
The project to close ranks and create a monolithic regime has led to irremediable maladies. Today, Khamenei needs to protect Rouhani’s government with all his might lest the fall of his government would destroy the entire regime. Rouhani’s government is completely paralyzed.
Economically, the regime’s banking system has become totally bankrupt.
The value of the country’s currency has fallen ten folds compared to the day Rouhani took office, and is edging on complete irrelevance. The government has a 70% budget deficit, the inflation rate is 60%, and the regime is 260 billion dollars in debt. And most importantly, the regime has lost all its decision-making abilities and potential influence in this domain.
Today, the regime’s own experts and officials acknowledge, one after the other, that they have reached the end of the line and they have no options for future.
The greater truth, however, is that the bells are tolling for the overthrow of this regime.
The revolutionary state of Iranian society
The Iranian society showed its amazing revolutionary state in the uprising last November, a capacity which is still in force. The society’s explosive conditions, pent-up discontent and animosity towards the regime are at an all-time high.
Two fundamental factors have contributed to this situation: One of them is the Coronavirus pandemic during which people have witnessed Khamenei's and Rouhani’s criminal policies and the perishing of lives. The other factor is the economic breakdown and the poverty and starvation of the greater majority of the populace.
The mullahs sought to use Coronavirus as a scapegoat. They want to offset the danger of being overthrown with a strategy of massive casualties. Concealing the outbreak of the pandemic, reopening of schools and businesses, refusing to allocate any budget or resources to the fight against the virus, were inhuman schemes to advance this ominous strategy. However, COVID-19, with a death toll of 150,000, has not been and will not be able to fulfill the mullahs’ evil ambitions.
The mullahs ruling Iran facilitated the spread of Coronavirus and did not make any serious efforts to contain it. This is why the pandemic has turned into a source for hidden escalation of fury and anger. And this is why every new Coronavirus death drives the regime one step further towards its downfall.
High price of bread and low price of lives
Another significant factor contributing to the escalation of public anger is poverty prevailing the Iranian society and brought about by the mullahs’ hoarding of enormous wealth for themselves. The number of unemployed has reached 11 million as 6.5 million people have lost their jobs.
The state-run press writes the following about the high price of bread. The price of bread has increased while the price of lives has diminished. Those who as part of the middle class enjoyed relative wellbeing until some time ago, have now joined the ranks of the poor and deprived. Many of them who lived in downtown areas have now moved to suburban areas and city slums. Yesterday’s poor are today starving. More than 97 per cent of jobs are unsteady and transitory with meager monthly incomes which could not pay for more than several days of expenses. In such circumstances, an innocent 11-year-old takes her own life, and a destitute and deprived Baluchi woman sells her body to buy drinking water to quench the thirst of her children and then commits suicide. And the deprived people of Chabahar whose homes were razed by the mullahs’ agents are crying out for justice.
But all the poverty and hunger and so much oppression and injustice will not remain unanswered.
Simmering of discontent and protests
Wherever we look, we can see a widespread and powerful desire for the overthrow of Khamenei’s regime as discontent and protests are simmering in Iranian society.
This spirit of protest shows itself more than anywhere else in the younger generation's attacks on paramilitary Bassij mercenaries.
Such confrontation has been seen in the way youths and women show their resistance in the face of repressive pressures of the IRGC, in the fury and rebellion of women in Paveh and in the protests of Baluchi women and women in Ahvaz and Hormozgan.
But what spearheads the protests is the incessant daily activities of Resistance Units inspiring hope against the mullahs’ regime.
And yet, the most concrete and vivid evidence of the revolutionary state of Iranian society emerged when contrary to the regime’s expectations, the execution of heroes and champions such as Navid Afkari and Mostafa Salehi heightened public protests and resistance, and when the arrests of protesters and courageous members of Resistance Units imbued more energy in the rebellion and fighting spirit of young people.
Yes, the flames of November 2019 uprising are alive and well in the activities of Resistance Units and courageous young people of Iran.
The mullahs have arrayed their forces against the people of Iran
It is because of this situation that the regime has resorted to parading young men in the streets. On Khamenei’s orders, they torture young people in the streets and before the public’s eyes.
This is why the Revolutionary Guards tortured and murdered Mehrdad Sepehri, a young man from Mashhad, in public by stun guns and pepper spray.
In Esfarayen, they shot and killed Abbas Minbashi, and in Abadan, they harassed and humiliated Bahar.
Yes, the clerical regime is deliberately creating such heinous scenes to terrorize the society because it fears the eruption of an uprising much greater than the uprising of last November.
This is the constant nightmare of the mullahs. Their repressive agencies have been checkmated by Iranian youths who punish criminal IRGC agents.
Frightened intelligence forces speak of young people procuring weapons. The state media publish consecutive reports on discovery of arms in Ahvaz, Hamadan, Isfahan, Lorestan, Ilam, Fars and Karaj. The SSF has been frustrated by such a dissenting spirit in society. Their wireless communications, occasionally recorded and divulged by the NCRI Counter-Terrorism and Security Committee, are quite telling and enlightening in this regard.
While the repressive SSF is 250,000 strong, its commander complains of personnel shortages, claiming that the SSF needs to expand to half-a-million troops.
The number of police stations in Tehran is 86, but Tehran Governorate’s security deputy says there must be 200 police stations. They have obliged many SSF units to sound their sirens every 5 minutes to terrorize the public. But these sirens only indicate that the regime in its entirety is terrified.
The IRGC Commander in Chief declared the regime’s plan to launch a “house-to-house” search under the pretext of identifying sick people.
The mullahs’ Judiciary also announced that Tehran’s neighborhoods have become unsafe for the regime. In Tehran, they have set up a garrison in charge of fighting young people.
On Khamenei’s direct orders, the IRGC has set up yet another garrison to control the situation under the pretext of controlling rising prices. The mullahs have arrayed their forces in a war footing to face off against the Iranian society, but to no avail.
The November 2019 uprising and its social and political ramifications have been moving like a powerful tide throughout the past year, shaking the ground beneath the mullahs’ feet.
The policy of appeasement cannot be repeated
The mullahs have no options for breaking out of the overthrow predicament. They are impatiently awaiting a change in U.S. policy, hoping to gain something out of it for themselves. They are overlooking the fact that their situation has got to a point where ultimately even such a change would aggravate the crises engulfing the entire regime and fail to resolve any of the problems of their decadent and corrupt theocracy.
Similarly, when the time came for the overthrow of the Shah, despite the fact that no sanctions were in place and he enjoyed total support and funds from the U.S. and Europe, he could not withstand the uprising of the people of Iran.
We believe and our people believe that the time has come for the overthrow of the mullahs’ religious dictatorship. Citing Victor Hugo, the Iranian Resistance Leader Massoud Rajavi once said: No force on earth can stop an idea whose time has come.
The policy of appeasement cannot be repeated, and even if it does, it would not solve any of the regime's problems. The time is up for policies that stand with the mullahs. This policy would only reap harm and loss.
On the other hand, the mullahs remember that they received the harshest international blows from the Iranian Resistance during the era of appeasement, including the delisting of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran, the National Council of Resistance of Iran, and the National Liberation Army of Iran in the U.S., and the relocation of the PMOI from Iraq. The regime is still twisting and turning from the pain of these two blows despite the passing of many years.
The Iranian Resistance achieved these great victories by relying on the PMOI’s glorious perseverance in camps Ashraf and Liberty despite many deaths and injuries and loss of sick members due to an inhumane blockade, and by relying on round-the-clock tireless efforts of members and sympathizers of the movement in all four corners of the world.
This nation and this resistance movement rely on their own will and on their own capacity to sacrifice. Their energy to make advancement comes from their own capacity to bring about change. This is a wonderful power that will make history.
As Massoud Rajavi said: What Khamenei does not account for in his calculations is the main and the key factor which is the people and the army of the hungry and the deprived. But he is wrong. Even if he enjoys the support of the U.S., Europe, China and others --just as the Shah did—the overthrow and fall of his regime would still be inevitable.
The regime is beset by crises and is at a dead-end. The people of Iran will have the final say. The vanguards, the rebels and the liberation army will write the destiny. We are the ones who can write our own fate and the fate of our people and homeland. Therefore, Iran’s destiny is written by the uprising of her courageous children in the battlefields of struggle and sacrifice. Yes, we must rely on no one but ourselves! Rebels will win victory.
Freedom and the future are in your hands
From December 2017 to November 2019, and throughout the past year, it became crystal clear that the strategy of “uprising and overthrow” devised by the commander of the Liberation Army is going to be victorious. And it will successfully lead all anti-regime fighting forces towards their great destination.
The clear and definitive conclusion of the developments of the past year since the November uprising is that there will be an irreversible and overpowering face-off between the Iranian society and the religious fascism. From a political standpoint, this is the beginning of the destruction of the foundations of the regime by the Iranian people and ultimately uprooting it. This will be finalized by the future protests and uprisings led by the great Army of Freedom.
And finally, to the heroic people and courageous youths of Iran, I say:
The ruling mullahs fear your power.
The numerous arrests, the naked torture of young men and women in the streets, the prevalent poverty and misery, and the abandonment of defenseless people in the midst of a deadly disease, demonstrate the regime’s fear of your resolve to rise up and overthrow them.
The blood-thirsty and coward mullahs fear your power; they are terrified of your solidarity and your will to overthrow the regime.
So do not doubt your own power to overthrow the regime even for a moment.
Do not give way even for a moment to disappointment and despair, saying nothing will change.
And do not spare a moment to assist and support Resistance Units and courageous youths.
Your love and hope for freedom are your assets in the struggle against Khamenei and the evil religious dictatorship.
On the anniversary of the November uprising and its proud martyrs, those 1,500 loving and glowing souls and the 120,000 martyrs who sacrificed their lives for Iran’s freedom call on everyone to rise up to overthrow the regime.
Rise up because obtaining freedom and the future are in your hands!
Yes, rebels will win victory
Not resting even for a moment
to restore love, bread and freedom in their homeland
Rebels hold fast to their flags
Their eyes glitter with hope
Forging ahead fearlessly to the zenith of victory
Rebels will win victory and bring about change
Hail to the martyrs,
Long live freedom,
Hail to the great uprising of the people of Iran for freedom.