December 2, 2019
In a statement released on his Telegram channel on Saturday Reza Pahlavi, the last Crown Prince of Iran has said that preparing for the “inevitable downfall of the Islamic Republic” and “leadership in transitional period” is a matter of utmost importance for Iranians now.
“Less than two years ago…while stressing that the downfall of the Islamic Republic was both near and inevitable, I stated that the prospects of the fall of the system and what will follow it requires us Iranians…to shape a modern authority. [Bringing about] the downfall of a political system requires preparation,” Reza Pahlavi declared in his statement.
Reza Pahlavi went on to say that forming a political authority to lead the country during the transition period must begin now. “This political leadership will eventually prepare the country for legal, political and economic transition from an Islamic government to an Iranian government on the basis of votes in ballot boxes,” the son of the last Shah of Iran who was ousted by the Islamic Revolution in 1979, stressed.
In his statement the 59-year-old former Crown Prince who addressed his statement to Iranian politicians, teachers, artists, lawyers, soldiers as well as “commanders of Iranian armed forces” said that as a soldier in the national struggle he will never give up and “political apparatuses must be entrusted to capable and knowledgeable politicians.”
During mass protests in 2017-2018 and also November 2019 chants praising the Pahlavi dynasty and its founder Reza Shah echoed in Iran. This showed the desire of many people to see an efficient government, building the country’s economy, without imposing religious dogma and limiting social freedoms.
This is particularly unnerving for Islamic Republic leaders who still after 41 years miss no opportunity to attack the Pahlavi dynasty as a “corrupt” regime serving the interests of the West.
Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei in his first reaction to the protests on November 17 took aim at the former royal family of Iran calling them “the sinister and malicious Pahlavi family” and accused them of inciting “riots” and supporting “thugs”.
One major contradiction in Islamic Republic’s rhetoric is that it portrays itself as popular and all-powerful and then when widespread protests take place it accuses the exiled opposition of having organized the people. If the government is strong and the opposition unpopular, then how they manage inspiring and organizing so many protesters.
Prince Reza Pahlavi showed a strong reaction to Khamenei’s accusations on November 20 and said Khamenei’s accusations against protesters who took to the streets in protest to the threefold increase in the price of gasoline and its rationing was “cowardly.”