Wednesday, January 2, 2019

D. Sadaati — Workers' Strikes in Iran: This Time it is Different

According to the Western narrative, the "Iranian people" are opposing "the Islamic dictatorship." This article tells a different story.

The Western media will not tell you, but the workers' protests in Iran are similar to the Yellow Vests in France, which is spreading internationally. Workers are getting fed up with capitalism as usual and are demanding socio-economic justice.

Longish, but it tells the story in some detail. Nothing about this being a political protest against the Islamic government as the Western media represent it.

Interestingly, though, the MEK, which the US is putting forward as a replacement for the current regime after "regime change," has socialist and communist roots. Of course, the other option in the West is brining back the Shah's family to rule. Contemporary Iranians have not forgotten the repression they experienced under the rule of the Shah and his secret police.

Libcom — Internationalist Communist Tendency's blog
Workers' Strikes in Iran: This Time it is Different
D. Sadaati

1 comment:

Konrad said...

“To see the new phase of the crisis, which began with the bursting of the speculative bubble in 2008, as just a repeat of the same decades-long pattern of boom and bust, is a mistake. It is a gross misunderstanding of the impasse that capitalism has come to today.”

Every Iranian president has been a rich neoliberal since Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani (1989 – 1997). The one exception was Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (2005 – 2013) which is why the Western Empire so despised him.

The failed “Green Revolution” of late 2009 was by the Iranian upper class, assisted by the USA. Neoliberals protested the re-election of Ahmadinejad.

Inequality has been rising in Iran since the early 1990s, with a temporary reversal brought by Ahmadinejad. In addition, a prolonged drought has killed the livelihoods of millions of rural Iranians, driving them to the cities, and creating a chronic unemployment crisis. As a result, Iranian workers have been striking, protesting, and rioting since 2014. The Iranian government has been increasingly brutal in crushing them.

The Iranian upper-class is pro-Western, and would like to join the Western financial empire. However they are excluded from joining because Israel, Saudi Arabia, and the Western Empire need “threats” and bogeymen. Therefore Iran’s rich rulers use Israel, Saudi Arabia, and the Western Empire as their own bogeymen. When the masses complain about being exploited, rich Iranians answer, “Israel! Khashoggi! Western aggression!”

“Protests continued. All official attempts, from labor representatives, reformists, and religious figures... were met with the same workers' resistance.”

The Iranian clergy is like the Western clergy, especially the Catholic Church. With rare exceptions they are pro-oligarch, and pro-neoliberal. Most are rich. Recall that the French Revolution of 1789 guillotined not only rich landowners, but rich clerics. Rich people were the “First Estate”; clerics were the “Second Estate”; and the masses (i.e. the 99%) were the “Third Estate.” The first two Estates always outvoted the third, until they were overthrown by the Third Estate.

Today the clergy is Iran’s “Second Estate.” Their function is to distract and divert the masses from revolting. Resistance to neoliberalism is “un-Islamic.” Complaining about inequality is “insulting to Allah.”

Make no mistake: the neoliberal plague has infected Iran just like it has most other nations. Iranian workers, like other workers, are being squeezed by debt, deregulation, privatization, financialization, and de-industrialization.