December 7, 2022

To undermine apartheid in Iran, don’t negotiate with the Islamic Republic

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by Farhad Rezaei, Senior Research Fellow

Western media reported that the Islamic Republic had abolished the brutal Islamic Guidance Patrol (Gasht-e Ershad) program and interpreted it as a concession to the ongoing revolutionary movement, which calls to overthrow the Islamic Republic.

Although the program is not abolished but paused, there are indications that the regime is trying to enforce the compulsory hijab through a new method, strikingly similar to the Apartheid in South Africa.

Countering this new but shameful and inhumane treatment of women demands global solidarity and requires significant economic and political pressure from the international community, especially the United States.

To begin with, the brutal treatment of women over the compulsory hijab has not been started with the establishment of the Gasht-e Ershad in 2005. As I wrote elsewhere, the mistreatment of women began in the early years of the Islamic Revolution when Khomeini made the hijab mandatory and the chador as “the best hijab.” When Iranian women protested the new mandate, they were brutally dispersed, and some were arrested. Khomeini followers chanted, “Ya Rusari Ya Tusari,” which means…