This coming Thursday, the Conference of Presidents, under the guise of a mom and apple pie-named coalition, Stand for Freedom in Iran, will rally against Mahmoud Ahmadinejad outside the United Nations.** Strangely though, Ahmadinejad is speaking to the General Assembly on Wednesday. Since he is the Israel lobby’s arch enemy you’d think they protest against him on that day. I can’t imagine what they were thinking. The only thing I can figure that deterred them is that most of the Iranian groups protesting will do so on Wednesday. Perhaps the Israel lobby didn’t want to be lumped together with them.
The Conference’s leadership of the coalition is hidden and its name doesn’t appear on the Stand for Freedom website except through a front group created by it, the National Interagency Task Force on Iran.
The only Iranian group sponsoring Stand for Freedom is the Progressive American Iranian Committee (PAIC), which isn’t at all what its name implies. It is actually a front group for Iranians who seek the violent overthrow of the current Iranian regime by any means necessary. It has made common cause with the People’s Mujahadeen, a radical Iranian cult which attempted to overthrow the Khomeini regime in 1981 and has been on the U.S. terrorism list for many years. The connection between the two is via a Mujahadeen executive committee member named Hassan Daioleslam.
Daioleslam is a shadowy character. His bio conveniently omits his membership in the Mujahadeen. Also absent (and absent from the PAIC website) is his status as a founding member of PAIC. He interviewed the “co-founder” of PAIC for this right-wing website and co-wrote this article with him. The vehemence of Daioleslam’s hatred for the Iranian regime has led him into the arms of some strange bedfellows. He’s a regular contributor to Frontpagemagazine, American Thinker and other far-right neocon publications. Of course, the bond is one of convenience and entirely cynical in its motive. The neocons want to overthrow the Islamic regime using military means. So do the Mujahadeen. The neocons claim to support “democracy” for Iran, though not the kind of democracy represented by Mohammad Mosaddeq, has v’chalila. Rather, they mean a pro-western government with the trappings of democracy. The Mujahadeen want a dictatorship led by them though I doubt they would put it that way.
Daioleslam has made a cottage industry out of smearing independent Iranian-American groups which oppose Teheran, but do not favor war due to the disastrous consequences it would have for many innocents. Chief among his targets is Trita Parsi and the National Iranian American Council, which he calls a U.S. front group and lobby for Teheran. NIAC sued the Mujahadeen leader in 2008 for defamation. The suit is currently in discovery and has survived legal rulings by Daioleslam to have it dismissed.
What it all comes down to is that on Thursday, the New York Jewish federation along with Malcolm Hoenlein’s Conference of Presidents will be lying down with an anti-Iranian regime dog named Hassan Daioleslam. If they’re not careful, by the time they get up to leave the rally they’ll have a bad case of fleas. Though he won’t say it in quite so many words, Hoenlein’s agenda (along with the Israeli government’s) is also to overthrow the Iranian regime. And he wants the world to believe that American Jews endorse his neocon approach. But they don’t. And I hope they’ll open their windows like Peter Finch in Network and shout that they’re mad as hell that people like Malcolm Hoenlein pretend to speak for them.
** Standforfreedominiran.org is registered to the Jewish Community Relations Council, the political lobbying arm of the Jewish community. So it is possible that the JCRC is the guiding light behind Stand for Freedom. But the Conference and JCRC are undoubtedly working hand in glove on this project.