Iranian dissident: We've 'lost all hope' in Biden but will overthrow regime with or without US

While Iran has seen a softening of international resistance to its nuclearization, the regime is facing increasingly bold and technically sophisticated internal resistance to its rule.

Updated: June 5, 2022 - 11:10pm

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The Iranian people have "lost all hope" in the Biden administration but will nonetheless overthrow the Islamist regime in control of their country with or without Western support, a member of the opposition operating inside Iran told Just the News in an exclusive interview.

"We're not just discontent," said a representative of the resistance who asked only to be identified as Khosrow for security reasons. "The Iranian resistance have lost all hope in the Biden administration. The price of President Biden's policy on the people of Iran and the region is one being paid with our blood and the destruction of our lives."

Khosrow, who's carrying out a range of duties for the resistance from mobilizing anti-government protests to supporting families of political prisoners, said the Iranian people have always relied on themselves to build a free Iran and don't expect anybody else to do it for them.

"But as a representative of the Resistance Units," he said, "we want for the U.S. and international community to end their appeasement policy toward the regime and impose sanctions on this octopus, which has so many hands that cause so much death and destruction."

The so-called "Resistance Units" — a network of Iranian activists associated with Iran's largest and most prominent opposition group, the People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (MEK) — have been at the forefront of shaping and guiding anti-government protests that are currently erupting across the country.

Khosrow's criticism of the West "appeasing" Iran and call to impose additional sanctions comes as the Biden administration remains intent on reviving the 2015 nuclear deal, officially called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

"We continue to believe that a mutual return to compliance with the JCPOA is in our national security interest," State Department spokesman Ned Price told reporters on Thursday.

One week earlier, Biden's top negotiator for Iran nuclear talks, Robert Malley, acknowledged the chances of success were "tenuous" but added the administration is "prepared to get back into the JCPOA for as long as our assessment is that its nonproliferation benefits are worth the sanctions relief."

The JCPOA places temporary curbs on Iran's nuclear program in exchange for lifting large-scale sanctions on Iran. Former President Donald Trump withdrew the U.S. from the deal in 2018.

The United Nations said last week that Iran has stockpiled enough highly enriched uranium to produce a nuclear weapon. Experts at the Institute for Science and International Security reached a similar conclusion, adding the regime could have enough explosive material for five weapons in six months.

But while Iran has seen a softening of international resistance to its nuclearization, the regime is facing increasingly bold and technically sophisticated internal resistance to its rule.

The mayor of Tehran, the Iranian capital, issued an order on Sunday banning all municipality employees from turning on their computers.

"Considering recent complications seen in the Tehran Municipality applications and especially the internal portals across the city of Tehran, please order all relevant personnel to refrain from turning on their computers from Monday, June 6, until further notice," read a statement from Tehran authorities. "Any shortcomings will be considered as administrative violations by the highest officials and directors and can be prosecuted."

The order came three days after the Resistance Units conducted an extensive operation, planned months in advance, in which they controlled and took down over 5,000 closed-circuit cameras installed at government centers, other key sites, and in Tehran's streets.

The offices of Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, President Ebrahim Raisi, the Ministry of Intelligence and Security, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and the State Security Force Command use and have access to the security cameras, which are controlled at a headquarters in Tehran's Municipality.

The network of cameras has been used to identify and detain protesters demonstrating against the theocratic regime as part of its surveillance and suppression of the Iranian people.

Iranian dissidents also took over more than 150 websites and platforms of Tehran's Municipality as part of Thursday's operation, posting slogans decrying the regime and praising Maryam Rajavi, ‌president-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, a coalition of Iranian opposition groups, including the MEK.

The servers were used to send nearly 600,000 phones the message: "Damned be Khomeini, death to Khamenei and Raisi, Hail to Rajavi."

"This was a massive operation that gives a lot of hope to the Iranian people," said Khosrow. "It sends a message that all the oppression, all the criminals in the oppressive machinery of this regime, all their crimes now being exposed, their tools of oppression are being taken away from them."

Khosrow added that the resistance has acquired significant intelligence from this operation and that it will take at least weeks for the cameras to go back fully online, making the coming days the perfect opportunity for people to act.

"This exposes the regime's weaknesses," said Khosrow, who argued such operations could cause security force personnel to dwindle as some fear they can longer engage in suppression in secret. "Its security apparatus is somewhat of a paper tiger — they no longer have the strength they were once propagating."

Anti-government protests have erupted across Iran in recent weeks. The rising cost of food and other staples earlier this month sparked sporadic unrest in several Iranian provinces. The demonstrations quickly turned political, with protesters decrying the regime — in many cases calling for its downfall — in addition to the higher prices.

A tragic building collapse in Iran, which resulted in at least 34 deaths, has also prompted protests, with Iranians blaming the authorities, accusing them of negligence and corruption.

Iran's theocratic regime has responded to the recent demonstrations with a brutal crackdown in a so-far-unsuccessful effort to quell the unrest.

Khamenei on Saturday blamed the protests on "enemies," accusing the U.S. of waging "psychological war" and stirring up unrest inside Iran.

However, Khosrow pointed instead to the regime's oppression and poor stewardship of the economy, arguing these protests are homegrown.

"Ordinary life is no longer possible," he said. "Things like recreation no longer exist. People want the overthrow of the regime inside Iran, and they will use any issue of the day as an excuse to protest, to cry out against the oppression, all the crimes."

So far, protesters have been peaceful, but Khosrow made clear more than peaceful protests will be necessary to bring down the regime.

"The methods of our resistance are imposed on us by our enemy," he explained. "Depending on how our enemy is attacking forces us to build our strategy accordingly. Our country is being wasted away by a regime that has imposed a reign of terror and told us they will only understand the language of firmness.

"We must fight fire with fire. Eventually, the only strategy is for there to be an armed rebellion against this regime. The plan is to mobilize resistance units by the day, building a connectivity so we can collectively stand against this regime and reduce and take away its tools of suppression."

Khosrow explained that he was imprisoned and tortured in the Intelligence Ministry's detention centers but eventually got out. However, he added, he's been in touch with relatives of victims of the government crackdown in 2019, when the regime killed about 1,500 protesters in response to a previous round of demonstrations.

"I'm here," he said. "But seeing those families' suffering caused me to join the resistance."

When asked how hopeful he is that the resistance will achieve its goals, Khosrow said he's "certain" the regime will fall with or without U.S. support.

"Right now, we're seeing the world rightfully rallying behind Ukraine, but there are other Ukraines," he said. "In the future, everyone will be able to judge who sided with the Iranian people and who sided with the oppressors."