The Corner

Why in the World Would We Want to Support the MEK?

According to Fox News, a group of smart, experienced people speaking at a panel in Washington yesterday had two things to say about U.S. policy toward Iran: Abandon all hope in negotiations with the Tehran regime; and support the regime’s internal enemies, notably the MEK, which has long been on the State Department’s list of terrorist organizations.

I’m not sure the Fox account is quite right. I spoke to two members of the panel and both said they had argued for delisting the MEK, not for supporting it. That’s a big difference, although even delisting the Mooj would be interpreted as an act of political significance. In any event, supporting the MEK would be a monumental blunder. First of all, it’s a cult of personality, not a pro-democracy opposition group, and we should be helping democrats in Iran. Second, most Iranians hate the MEK, because it is based in Iraq and operated on behalf of Saddam Hussein, killing many Iranians. Doing anything that looks like an embrace of the MEK would foolishly antagonize the overwhelming majority of the Iranian people, above all the broad-based coalition that fights under the banner of the Green Movement.

Several speakers (indeed, maybe all of them) at yesterday’s panel called for supporting the Greens, but this was not featured in the Fox report. That’s where our energies should be directed. Whatever you think of the MEK, whatever the merits of the “delisting” debate, it’s foolishly counterproductive to spend so much energy on the MEK — whose “army” numbers in the thousands or perhaps a few tens of thousands — instead of the Greens, whose followers are counted in the tens of millions. Support the Iranian people, please, not a small fringe group.

Finally, one would like to know who sponsored the panel, how many of the panelists received fees for participating (some certainly did), and who paid for it. You know, that “we report, you decide” thing.

Michael Ledeen — Michael Ledeen is an American historian, philosopher, foreign-policy analyst, and writer. He is a former consultant to the National Security Council, the Department of State, and the Department of Defense. ...

Most Popular

Film & TV

The Mob Gets Kevin Hart

This week, shortly after being tapped to host the Oscars, Hollywood star Kevin Hart found himself on the wrong side of the woke social-justice warriors. His great sin: Years ago, he tweeted jokes referencing homosexuality. More egregiously, in 2010, he did a comedy bit in which he discussed not wanting his son, ... Read More
White House

Mueller’s Got Nothing

The revelations of the last few days are, though disguised, the crash in ignominy of the Robert Mueller putsch. But they are far from the end of the story. While the sire of the Mueller hit-squad assault, former FBI director James Comey, declared 245 times at last Friday’s House Judiciary Committee hearing that ... Read More

The Dangers of Asymmetry

It is strange how suddenly a skeptical Wall Street, CEOs, and even university and think-tank policy analysts are now jumping on the once-taboo Trump bandwagon on China: that if something is not done to stop China’s planned trajectory to global hegemony, based on its repudiation of the entire post-war trade and ... Read More