I attended the “Solidarity with Iran” protest on Queens Park today, and tonight I want to write a personal account of what I encountered, since what I came face to face with at this protest was almost as disturbing as the news that has been coming out of Iran since the elections.
I arrived around 2:30pm and by that time thousands of Iranians had gathered, I could see hundreds of Lion and Sun Flags, and of course as always I had my flag with me and I was holding it up high. As I arrived one thing I noticed was green wearing Mousavi supporters, of course without flags, and some of them with the sign “Where is my Vote.” I ended up standing beside some of these people for a while and heard them make a offensive comment about the Lion and Sun Flag, which led me to hold my flag even higher. For anyone who might not be aware, when the Islamic Regime came to power the first thing they did was to change the Iranian flag, however to this day the Lion and Sun flag is widely used and accepted by anti-Islamic Regime Iranians, and is a great symbol of nationalism.
About an hour into this protest and still there were no slogans, just some speeches, nothing really about the Islamic Regime and it’s crimes, only talk about the fact that the Presidential [S]election may have been fraudulent. Many of the speakers also claimed that the only reason people were out in the streets in Iran was because they were displeased with the result of the [S]elections. Many people seem to have forgotten the fact that Ahmadinejad has only been the President for four (4) years however the Islamic Regime including Mousavi who was the Prime Minister from 1981 to 1988 have been carrying out their crimes against the Iranian people for 30 years!
As much as Mousavi supporters who are really supporting the Islamic Regime and are only asking for a different president from within this Regime, or the Western Media try to make it seem like people are unhappy about [S]election results, there are many Iranians on the streets saying “death to the Islamic Regime.”
I was a strong supporter of boycott of the [S]elections, however and unfortunately people went out and voted. What the international community needs to realize is the fact the Iranian people were given a choice between Ahmadinjad or someone that in their eyes seemed to be better than Ahmadinejad (which isn’t saying much). The people did not have the choice to have a free election and decide the kind of government that they wanted! Therefore many decided to choose between bad and worse in a desperate attempt for change. This does not mean that Iranian people support the Islamic Regime by any means!
Back to the protest, after about an hour I and a few people that were standing beside me started shouting anti Regime slogans such as “Down with the Islamic Regime” and “Mousavi is just an excuse, the entire Regime has been targeted.” This did not go well with Regime Supporters who tried their best to make us stop. We had to remind them that we were in Canada and could make use of freedom of speech and expression. While my brothers and sisters in Iran are shouting “death to the Islamic Regime” and getting shot for it, I am not going to be staying quiet in a safe and free country like Canada.
So myself and a few other amazing women gathered and went directly in the middle of the crowd and started shouting anti Islamic Slogans. I was quite amused when one of these reformist/Regime apologists came up to me and told me we shouldn’t say anything anti-Regime since we were there for peace. I would really like to know where was this peace these people were talking about when a young woman named Neda and tens of other people were murdered on the streets of Tehran yesterday?
I can’t speak for everyone, but I attend demonstrations because I don’t believe the Islamic Regime is capable or worthy of reform. I believe the only way Iran will be free is if the Islamic Regime is totally and completely removed from power. I don’t go to protests to appease Regime supporters! I go to protests to make sure the voices of my sisters and brothers in Iran are heard loud and clear.
I must note that 90% of reformist/regime apologists were young students, and who can blame them? If they say “down with the Islamic Regime,” who will pay their way, so that they can study in some of the best universities in Canada? It’s a small price to pay, having to walk over the blood of their brothers and sisters for a free education in Canada!
As freedom loving Iranians we have to stand up for our brothers and sisters in Iran, we have to make sure we are present at every event and every protest, and not to allow these bursary students who are only looking out for their own interests to con the world into thinking Iranian people only have a problem with Ahmadinejad. As many Iranians have been saying Mousavi is just an excuse, and the entire Regime is a target!
The only way for a free Iran is total removal of Islamic Regime including Mousavi who is responsible for the execution of thousands of political prisoners in 1988. Therefore my slogan is Down With the Islamic Regime, and long live freedom in Iran.
PS: I would like to take the opportunity to thank the Toronto Police for their presence at this event.