The report of Human Rights Watch about human
rights abuses by the Mojahedin-e Khalq Organization has cited, in one case,
Mr. Massoud Banisar as follows:
According to Massoud Banisadr who was the
representative of NCRI in Europe and the US until 1996, this Council was
practically the political branch of the MKO and its lobby in Europe and the
…It was obvious to everyone but ourselves that politically the Mojahedin had
failed to create the broad coalition Rajavi had promised….We repeated to
each other that the NCR was Rajavi’s means of staying on the political scene
in Europe and America and nothing more. Its main use was to deceive the
Americans and Europeans against thinking of us as the same Mojahedin
responsible for assassinating American citizens in Iran…
About Operation Eternal Light, Rajavi said: We will not be fighting alone;
we will have the people on our side. They are tired of this regime, and
especially since the ceasefire, they have every incentive to get rid of it
forever. We will only have to act as their shields, protecting them from
being easy targets for the [revolutionary] guards. Wherever we go there will
be masses of citizens joining us, and the prisoners we liberate from jails
will help us lead them towards victory. It will be like an avalanche,
growing as it progresses. Eventually the avalanche will tear Khomeini’s web
apart. You don’t need to take anything with you. We will be like fish
swimming in a sea of people. They will give you whatever you need.
About ten years later, when the organization published names and photographs
of martyrs from the operation for the first time, the number of martyred was
announced as 1,304. Our other losses were officially 1,100 injured, of whom
11 subsequently died.
Operation Forogh [Eternal Light] dashed our political hopes. Worse, it
signified the end of ideology, of moral belief and expectation –for me and,
as I soon discovered, many others. Our basic values no longer had any
meaning and ceased to sustain us. We had all become actors playing to each
other, encouraged by each other. This lie reached its intolerable climax
when our “ideological leader” failed to admit his predictions and judgment
had been wrong…once, we had been told that belief in Mojahedin was based on
two premises: the sacrifice they were willing to make and their honesty.
After Forogh the well of honesty completely dried up, and from then on the
organization rested on only one foundation: “sacrifice” and more
The first thing I was required to do in Baghdad was watch a videotape of an
ideological meeting for “executive and high-ranking members.” The meeting,
called “Imam Zaman,”36 started with a simple question: “To whom do we owe
all our achievements and everything that we have?”… Rajavi did not claim, as
I thought he might, to be the Imam of our times, but merely said we owed
everything to Imam Zaman… The object was to show that we could reach Tehran
if we were more united with our leader, as he was with Imam Zaman and God.
He was ready to sacrifice everything he had (which in fact meant all of us!)
for God, asserting that the only thing on his mind was doing the will of
God,….we were expected to draw the conclusion that no “buffer” existed
between Rajavi and Imam Zaman; yet there was a buffer between ourselves and
him [Rajavi] … which prevented us from seeing him clearly. This “buffer” was
our weakness. If we could recognize that, we would see why and how we had
failed in Operation Forogh [Eternal Light] and elsewhere. Massoud and Maryam
[Rajavi] had no doubt that the buffer was in all our cases our existing
The atmosphere on the base was completely different….The mood was one of
unremitting misery…It seemed everyone was in the process of the new phase of
the “ideological revolution.” The only legitimate discussion was about the
revolution and the exchange of relevant experiences. Apart from that nothing
was important; there was no outside world….Even poor single people were
required to divorce their buffers, having no idea whom that meant;
apparently the answer was to divorce all women or men for whom they harbored
any feelings of love. Only later did I realize the organization demanded not
only a legal divorce but also an emotional or “ideological” divorce. I would
have to divorce Anna [his wife] in my heart. Indeed I would have to learn to
hate her as the buffer standing between our leader and myself.
Rajavi announced at the meeting that as our “ideological leader” he had
ordered mass divorce from our spouses. He asked everyone to hand over our
rings if we had not already done so. That meeting was the strangest and most
repugnant I had ever attended. It went on for almost a week….
Afterwards my masoul [supervisor] advised me to go to a bungalow and think.
I had become a bangali, which meant being put in solitary confinement,
ordered to do nothing but think and write. It was an extreme kind of mental
torture, and there were members who preferred to kill themselves than to
The report of HRW- which has only mentioned a very small part of evidences
of war crimes and crimes against humanity by Massoud and Maryam Rajavi- is
so brief that it has not even mentioned fully the basic words of the cited
witnesses. About MKO’s move abroad against a known person like him, Mr.
Banisadr’s book- which is a summary of his own experiments and observations
(Mr. Banisadr was not at a position to experience the brutality of Rajavi
and his former master Saddam Hussein)- says:
“It seemed that a number of members who had left the organization in the US
and Europe had not made any problems for Rajavi, but defectors in Iraq had
acted to bring down the organization. They showed their enmity toward the
organization by taking advantage of politicians, press and even the UN…” (P
“The organization asked me to write a book to prove that these moves against
the organization are being done by Iranian spies and secret agents, to prove
that they’re being financed in this way and thus, prove that all what they
say are lies.”
In this regard, they gave me a folder full of papers which had been gathered
for each and every one of those members. Most of them were the reports of
those people and their self-criticisms and pieces of newspapers that had
written about the issue. Jaberzadeh explained for me how to use these
documents. In other words, all the issue was based on this theory: the
friend of my enemy is my enemy. Any newspaper that had once published
something about regime was labeled anti-MKO; So were the interviewer and the
interviewee, and at the next level all those who dealt with that newspaper.
And this still didn’t finish here because if the person made contact with
another publication, it was also labeled as “belonging to the regime”.
By following that logic, Mojahedin proved that almost all Iranian
publications, inside and abroad, either receive money from the regime’s
services or are direct agents of the services. In rare cases, they were
considered the agents of Monarchists or CIA. Similarly, all those who talked
to such publications were considered as the agents of services!
With this load of documents, they felt that I could write the book they
needed. I didn’t want to use their logic or rely on their standards, their
allegations and …” (P 453)
“They told me they’d brought “a check” and that I could choose any rank in
the organization. I smiled… and told them that I want only one thing. That
they announce that I’m no longer the representative of NCRI… (They have not
done this yet-author).
Then, thinking about escaping, I went to my sister’s home and stayed there
for a few days. It was useless. They had followed me and were watching the
house. Then they appeared as the agents of regime. Perhaps they wanted to
show me that if they don’t protect me, what will happen to me outside the
world of Mojahedin. When I protested, they denied watching the house and put
the blame on the regime. So, I said that I’d decided to call the police.
This led to the miraculous disappearance of the spies around the house.
There were also more suspicious events. Once they told me that I should meet
a sister, Fereshte and that it’s urgent. We agreed to meet in the metro
station of Baker Street. I arrived in the place a bit earlier; so, to kill
the time, I left the station from the other entrance. There, I saw that
another member of the organization was waiting. He came and said: “So. They
have also told you to come here?”
I was sure that he knows nothing of my separation from the organization.
“Yes, that’s right. I’m supposed to meet Sister Fereshte at the other side
of the station,” I said.
“Exactly; they’ve told me to stay here and Bahman is somewhere else,” he
“Do you know why we are here?” I asked.
“I don’t know but I think that’s an important issue. Sister Nasrin (Mahvash
Sepehri, the head torturer of Rajavi’s band- author) is also here to take
someone with her to Paris.”
“I don’t know. You can ask yourself. She is in the car on the other side of
I was shocked by what was going on. They had come to take me to Paris. They
will use other tools if they can’t take me by my own will. I left him and
went to my apartment. After that, I received a number of telephone calls,
asking for meetings but I didn’t dare to go forward…
On February 20th, Massoud Rajavi called me himself… first, he asked me not
to hang up. Then he asked me to take part in NCRI’s assembly in Baghdad…
“What’s my fault? Why should I pay for the mistakes of others? What should I
say to those who ask about you?”
He could have contented me to listen to him if he had used other words but I
saw that he tried to show himself as an innocent person who has not done
anything wrong. Maybe he was right from his own point of view. Based on the
ideology he had made, he was right. In the end, he considered himself the
representative of God on the earth…(P 466)
Again, we don’t forget that these are the memoir of a person who didn’t
experience many of the brutal middle aged orders of the Rajavis, and he was
not at a position to see such behaviors against others, due to his own
geographical and external position (he was the representative of NCRI in the
US and Europe).
To explain the issue I refer to one of the mentioned issues.
Mr. Banisadr has referred to the casualties of Eternal Light Operation and
the failure of Mojahedin in this operation. He, based on his words, was sent
to fight a classic army with the experience of 8 year bloody war although he
had not been trained. He survived even though he was wounded. Although Mr.
Banisadr (and also Human Rights Watch) may have seen the final outcome of
the operation but they are not aware of most of the issues of those days
(which led to that operation), of what was happening at the joint operation
room of Mojahedin and Iraqis, of the words exchanged between four Iraqi
generals and Massoud and Maryam Rajavi.
As a person who was there in that room, I’d like to tell him and HRW (and if
the time lets me and there’s a court, Izzat Ebrahim can be another witness
on this issue) that 24 hours after it was clear that Mojahedin would fail
and when it was clear that Iranian Army has withdrawn its forces to cut the
way back, when four Iraqi generals with tears in their eyes asked Rajavi to
order for withdrawal in order to save the lives of MKO members, he didn’t
accept and believed that all should go or Saddam should agree to give more
air support. He wanted to secure air support by the price of the lives of
members. But the Generals said that even if Saddam wants to do so he can not
because of international, political and situational issues. Massoud Rajavi
was even taken to visit Saddam but he came back empty-handed. All those in
the operation, especially commanders, remembers very well that those who
were saved had returned against the orders or had narrow escapes from the
blood and fire (of course, except Mehdi Abrishamchi and other menials of
Aur-sur-Oise who were informed in private and returned to the camps before
If Massoud and Maryam had accepted the words of the military professionals
at that time and even had ordered the withdrawal, at least four-fifth of
those dead now could have returned safely. Mr. Banisadr and Human Rights
Watch Organization, the number of 1304 dead and 1100 wounded which has been
announced by Rajavi himself (the real number is more than 3000) is not due
to the stupidity of the Rajavis (since the stupid can be forgiven) but it’s
because of the evilness, outrage and turpitude of this couple.
As far as I know, such a lunatic move has not an earlier record in the
history of human kind and again, as far as I have investigated, such a move,
from any commander at any position, is considered a war crime (toward
friendly forces) and should be investigated in the international courts.
The report of HRW, words of Mr. Banisadr, testimonies of former Abu Ghraib
prisoners, testimonies of the children who were abused, the tears of the
families of MKO captives and thousands of other reports and documents shed
light on this sick heart couple, each from a different angle. We hope that
we can turn these projectors on, all in international courts and show the
real face of Maryam and Massoud Rajavi so that the future generations of all
the countries of the world take a lesson.