|In at least 40 cities and towns throughout much of Iran, thousands of people have taken to the streets to protest a government they deeply despise and distrust. Yet, there is hardly any mention in the media about it, and even less from the Biden administration.
This latest round of protests began shortly after May 3rd, when the government announced its intention to remove its subsidy of flour that had been in place for over 200 years. The Iranian government had been relying on a Ukrainian supply of wheat, which had threatened the supply chain and global prices, but because of a pervasive atmosphere of total corruption and mismanagement, Iranians took to the streets to demonstrate. On top of that, a building collapsed last week, killing dozens of people and trapping more than 80 under the rubble.
What began as a purely economic protest has morphed into a great protest against the Iranian regime, with shouts of “We do not hate America; we hate the regime. Down with the regime! Death to Khameini!” These people have demonstrated phenomenal courage. The Basij, as well various IRGC militias have randomly shot and killed many of the demonstrations. Others have been rounded up, arrested and tortured, and carted off to the notorious Evin prison, sometimes never to be seen from or heard from again. Yet, the valiant demonstrators continue.
Where is the Western media about this? Why no word from the White House.
We are profoundly honored to have with us Navid Mohebbi, a policy fellow from the National Union for Democracy in Iran (NUFDI).
About the speaker: Navid is a former Iranian political prisoner and long-time political activist. In 2010, Mohebbi was arrested by the Islamic Republic in Iran and recognized by the Committee to Protect Journalists as the youngest jailed journalist in the country.
Navid was born and raised in Iran. Before coming to the US in 2013, he lived in Turkey for two years. He holds a BA in international relations and Middle Eastern studies from George Washington University and previously worked as a Persian media analyst for the State Department. He also recently completed a DOD-funded fellowship program in which he researched the impact of climate change on political stability in Iran.