Hassan Mahmoudi
Iran: Friday Prayers Leaders and “PLANS OF THE ENEMY”

Friday Prayers are traditionally a gathering point in Iran's cities. The government buses take Basij militia, soldiers, IRGC members and their families, government authorities and their supporters to a large area prepared in advance with enough security, to fill out the crowd. They sit for hours listening to sermons of clergy who often reflect the views of supreme leader Ali Khamenei during their public addresses. the Friday prayer is a platform at which the regime sets out the directives of the supreme leader's political agenda and sends messages to "enemies," usually, the opposition, resistance units, the US, or the West.

During the sermon, The clergies use a variety of tactics to spread propaganda amongst the people, and divert the attention of the people from internal problem agitating the crowd to chant "Death to America", "Death to the Mujahidin" (the main opposition), and also accusing the others for shortages and incompetence. Usually, the sermons pave the way for the crackdown on protesters.  

During the recent protests and strikes, Friday prayer leaders have been focused on warning the public about the role of the organized and democratic Iranian Resistance in undermining the mullahs’ rule.

This shows that the popular anti-regime uprising that swept the nation in 2018 and continues despite the mullahs attempts to suppress it has terrified the Regime leaders.

The Friday prayer leaders said that the “plans of the enemy” and “uprisings by the disenchanted population” pose a direct threat to “the Revolution”, by which the mullahs mean their hostile takeover in 1979.

In Golpaygan, Friday prayer leader Mohammad Taghi Keramati described an enemy who wanted to “destroy the roots of the establishment” and cautioned officials not to be scared or weaken their resolve.

While Yazd’s Mohammad Reza Naseri warned Regime officials to be wary of rumors that “the enemy” will use to cause mistrust in the Regime. This is an odd comment because the truth about Regime officials would be enough to cause mistrust.

In Arak, Ghorbanali Dori Najafabadi specifically named the Iranian Resistance as the enemy and called on the Regime to “resist”.

Other Friday prayer leaders, like Gholamali Naeem Abadi of Hormozgan, gave thanks that the mullahs’ regime has not been overthrown yet as a way of hiding their fear that it will soon happen.

Abadi said: “As we approach the 40th anniversary of the Revolution, all the enemies who prayed for the destruction of the establishment have themselves been destroyed.”

But Yusef Ghassemi, the Friday prayer leader of Kangan, acknowledged that the Iranian Resistance is working to undermine the Regime’s 40th-anniversary celebrations with protests. Importantly, if the Iranian people supported the Regime, these protests would not happen.

Yet more Friday prayer leaders addressed the Regime’s fear of the Iranian Resistance’s popularity abroad. Tabriz’s Mohammad Ali Ale Hashem rightly identified that the Iranian Resistance seeks the collapse of the Regime, but he called on the EU to listen to Iranian people over their harboring of Iranian Resistance members. Of course, the Iranian people do not have a problem with this, rather the Iranian Regime does.

But Friday prayer leaders are just one sector of the Iranian Regime complaining about the problems they are facing. Iran’s foreign ministry recently tried to criticize the EU for allowing the Iranian Resistance to hold gatherings on its soil, right after the EU issued sanctions against Iran for terrorist plots in Europe.

The Regime tries to dismiss and diminish the role of the Iranian Resistance, but their fear only shows how powerful the Resistance is.

Meanwhile, on Jan 22, 2019 social media exploded with video clips of activities of Members of resistance  Units, a network linked directly to the Iranian opposition People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK), showed that they set fire to a poster of the supreme leader in dozens of cities across the country. Such as Esfahan, Esfarayen, Farouj, Khoramabad. Orumieh, Shadgan

In Esfahan, a Members of resistance Units set to fire a base of the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) Basij paramilitary forces on Jan 22, 2019. They left a sign at the scene reading, “Hail to National Liberation Army -NLA"– Death to Khamenei, "

In East Azerbaijan Province, northwest Iran, members of a resistance unit set fire to a Khamenei poster at a border crossing. They also put up a poster at the scene sending a message saying the mullahs’ prisons will crumble as did those of the shah.

A member of Resistance in Tehran put up a poster and sent a message saying, “To Khamenei and all his operatives I say there is no fleeing the people’s wrath. Your regime being overthrown is certain. The criminals ruling Iran should know that Resistance Units cannot be destroyed. You may arrest us. You may jail us. You may sentence us to death and execute us. However, resistance units are willing to sacrifice their all to keep the fire of Iran’s uprising alive until this regime is overthrown. Hail to the heroic people of Iran hail to the PMOI/MEK, Death to Khamenei.”

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