The ruling regime in Iran has encountered massive opposition to the fraudulent presidential elections held in June.
The street marches and demonstrations go beyond support for the reformist candidates and strike a blow at the heart of the repressive forces of the regime.
Fishing in troubled waters, the US imperialists try to contain the people’s movement, hoping to see the ousting of the anti-imperialist incumbent, Ahmadinejad and his replacement by a government headed by the “opposition” candidate Mousavi. They promote Mousavi as a candidate sympathetic to negotiating an end to Iran’s nuclear program and promise a relaxation of their economic blockade of Iran if he can replace the “hard-liners”.
In fact, these two candidates are among the four chosen by the Guardian Council of the Islamic Republic to run for the elections. Each candidate is committed to the continuation of the Islamic Republic and opposed to secular and progressive change.
The reformists held office prior to the rise of Ahmadinejad. They had the opportunity twelve years ago to legalise the right to form trade unions, but refused. They support the neo-liberal economic policies of the WTO, the IMF and the World Bank and are fully in support of the privatization of major sectors of the economy in order to attract imperialist investment.
Ahmadinejad was brought into office by the Iranian ruling class as a response to imperialist economic sanctions, sabotage and threats. He takes a militant stand against imperialism and Zionism on one hand, but on the other, refuses to mobilize the most conscious and steadfast anti-imperialist section of the Iranian people, the workers. Indeed, labour activists are tortured and jailed. This year’s May Day rallies in Teheran, Sanandaj and other cities were brutally attacked by thugs of the regime, using electric batons and pepper spray. More than 150 activists were arrested.
We must support the right of the Iranian people to struggle against the bogus elections. The fight for the overthrow of the reactionary regime of the Islamic Republic, for the right to form trade unions and to strike, for full equality between men and women, for the prohibition of child labour and for the release of all imprisoned workers and progressive peoples, is entirely just and accords with the principle of international working class solidarity.