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Irans Three-Ring Circus Presidential “Selection”

By Marziyeh Amirizadeh


This week’s Iran’s presidential election is really a “selection,” controlled by its all-powerful Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Only candidates who are approved, vetted, and qualified by the 12 member Guardian Council are eligible to participate in this three-ring circus. Six Guardian Council members are appointed directly by the Supreme Leader. The other six are selected by Khamenei’s hand-picked judiciary chief. The judiciary chief is appointed not because of his qualifications as a jurist, but because of his loyalty to the Supreme Leader. The Guardian Council members are the singularly most loyal soldiers and servants of the Supreme Leader. They are his clowns to run the country, jumping through hoops as the ringmaster Khamenei wishes.  


After the mysterious death of President Raisi in a helicopter crash last month, the Islamic regime launched its circus presidential “selection.” The Guardian Council (AKA the Supreme Leader) approved six candidates. Five hardliners, and one reformist, Masoud Pezeshkian.


What qualifies the candidates is not their education, political or diplomatic proficiency, or their experience running a country. Their qualification is based exclusively on their subservience to the Supreme Leader, blood on their hands from killing dissidents, and supporting, organizing, and exporting extremist Islamic ideology and terrorism abroad.


The candidates are indeed clowns, puppets of the Supreme Leader. Their resumes echo their servitude, having served as commanders of the IRGC, members of Basij (secret police), parliamentarians, or in different capacities under the Supreme Leader’s direct supervision. Each candidate excels at serving the Supreme Leader through suppression and killing of countless Iranian civilians, or expanding terrorism in the Middle East to organizations like Hamas, Hezbollah, and other proxies, killing Israelis and other innocents.


In the circus of Iranian elections, the Supreme Leader always selects one reformist candidate to deceive people to bring them to the ballot box, ostensibly to legitimize the show. As always, the reformist clown, this time Pezeshkian, plays the part of a candidate on the side of people, seeming to care about their issues.


One issue that reformists always play with is the suppression of women for not wearing a hijab. Publicly, Pezeshkian promises to address this issue and give women their freedom. His campaign motto is “For Iran.” “For” in Farsi is “baraye” which is the name of the song that became the anthem of the “Woman, Life, Freedom” movement after the brutal 2022 murder of Mahsa Amini, an Iranian Kurdish woman who was murdered by the regime for not wearing a hijab. By using this motto “For Iran,” Pezeshkian tries to deceive Iranians that he cares about Iranians and is going to work for them. 


In fact, reformists and hardliners are opposite sides of the same coin. Together, they act as oxygen to the regime. In the presidential selection this week, Pezeshkian plays the sympathetic reformist clown of the Supreme Leader to deceive the world that Iranians support the Islamic regime through the electoral circus. Nevertheless, the majority of Iranians know that the president has already been selected, and the circus of an “election” is just a side show for the world to see, to legitimize a terrorist regime in power.


For years, Iranians were deceived by this tactic. In the 2009 presidential selection, millions of Iranians voted for a reformist candidate, but the Supreme Leader selected hardliner Ahmadinejad, teaching Iranians a lesson that in the Islamic regime dictatorship, Iranians have no voice, and their vote counts for nothing. It amplified that reformists only prop up the regime, and are worse than the hardliners.


After the brutal murder of Mahsa Amini, more than 80 million Iranians said “NO” to the Islamic regime. That is the true vote of Iranians that unfortunately the world’s leaders refuse to hear. Iranians chanted in the streets, “Hardliners, reformists, the game is over.”


However, in this presidential selection in order to deceive people to vote for him, Pezeshkian, is using another tactic of the former Foreign Minister Javad Zarif, the master of deceiving Iranians. Zarif, during one of his interviews outside Iran, said that despite all the regime’s suppression, Iranians always support their leaders. In addition to Pezeshkian as candidate, regime-exported reformist agents outside Iran work ceaselessly to extort legitimacy for the regime from western leaders. Zarif was one of the masterminds to plant reformists in key leadership roles outside Iran for this critical time.


While millions of Iranians boycott the presidential selection circus, the Islamic regime is working tirelessly to gather their followers to sham campaign rallies, deceiving people through bribery, and giving them false hope. They bus many of their followers, and Afghan migrants as additional clowns, to create a crowd for their presidential puppets. While Iranians are not familiar with iconic circus leader PT Barnum, the regime subscribes to his truism that there’s “a sucker born every minute.”


Shockingly, reformists outside Iran, with the help of the Biden administration, are also organizing more than 30 polling stations in different states for the regime’s agents who are enjoy freedoms in the United States, to be able to cast their votes for the killers at home. Through this, they use illusions through smoke and mirrors to pretend to Americans that Iran has any democracy.


While Iranians have no hope for the future of their country as long as this evil regime is in power, President Biden is giving hope to the ayatollahs to stay in power for his own interests, and in support of his presidential candidacy.


No matter how hard the Biden administration and some western politicians are working behind the scenes to keep the biggest state sponsor of terrorism in power, history has proven that dictators will collapse when 90% of people say enough is enough.  The outcome of this week’s “selection” is pre-determined, but Iranians will eventually realize victory and take back their freedom despite all the betrayals.


Shame and treason will be the only legacy of those who stand on the wrong side of the history with the Supreme Leader and ayatollahs.


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Marziyeh Amirizadeh is an Iranian American who immigrated to the US after being sentenced to death in Iran for the crime of converting to Christianity.   She endured months of mental and physical hardships and intense interrogation. She is author of two books (the latest, A Love Journey with God), public speaker, and activist for religious freedom. She has shared her inspiring story throughout the United States and around the world, to bring awareness about the ongoing human rights violations and persecution of women and religious minorities in Iran.






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