The Iranian regime continues to champion gross interference in the lives of citizens in a bid to prevent public expression of discontent.
Great discrepancy lies between the regime’s outlook and the aspirations of the Iranian people.
The two differ on political, ideological and cultural issues. The differences are so fundamental that they are irreconcilable.
But the regime cannot afford to let the people be or allow them to exercise their own judgment.
Every theocratic, oppressive regime aspires to absolute control because anything less is rightly perceived as a threat to its existence.
Since its ideology and values do not have any standing and cannot be defended with reason, the regime turns to violence and subjugation for enforcement.
Recently, Iran Revolutionary Guards raided a party in the city of Nazarbad under the pretext of disturbance in public order and arrested 46 people. These include 24 men and 22 women. In another incident on January 19, 84 young men and women were arrested for the ‘crime’ of attending a celebratory party.
Reportedly, security personnel have also been removing mannequins displayed at clothing stores. According to police, “These mannequins promote mal-veiling and therefore it was ordered that they be removed from shops windows”.
Raiding parties does not serve anyone but the regime that has no regard for peoples’ privacy or choices, and considers it to be its duty to meddle and enforce its will.
Such raids are not only aimed at punishing the participants, but they are also meant to scare onlookers. Fear is necessary to create a homogenous society.
The regime has intensified the crackdown on what it perceives to be ‘immoral’ people, activities and even, electronics. Recently, regime officials arranged a ceremony where satellite dishes, which are quite popular especially in Tehran and surrounding provinces, were set on fire. They had been decorated with slogans that described them as the root of all evils. Still, the number of people who watch international channels through satellite dishes is on the rise.
In another incident, eight social media activists were sentenced to a combined 133 years in prison. They had been charged with “colluding and gathering against national security, propaganda activities against the system, insulting sacred symbols, insulting the head of the government branches and insulting specific individuals”.
All this is happening under the supposedly moderate government of President Hassan Rouhani, which goes to show that nothing has changed and nor will it as long as the Iranian regime remains in power.