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December 15, 2011

Iranian labor movement warns against potential war

The Network of Iranian Labor Associations (NILA) has sent a sobering message to the international community, warning that an attack on Iran would have devastating consequences and would inevitably strengthen the regime to an unprecedented extent.
NILA, who are the leading advocates of Iran’s growing labor movement sent a letter to Amnesty International ahead of their International Human Rights in Iran event in Chicago this coming Saturday.
The letter, which heavily criticizes human rights abuses in Iran whilst congratulating human rights advocates for their continuing efforts, gives a frank assessment of the potential impact that an attack on Iran could have:

“They (Iranian Regime) are preparing themselves for war. The bloodier, the better, from their perspective. It would be their savior, a lifeline to the regime. Under the circumstances, it would be sheer folly for either Israel or the United States to go to war with Iran. Why give the Islamic Republic’s leaders a fresh lease on life when every visible sign points to a terminal state of being?”

The letter aims to warn hawkish factions of the international community that the growing threats of war only “consolidate the regime for many years to come and it would radicalize the Arab Spring into a radical Islamic fundamentalist nightmare.”

The letter pleas with the human rights and international community at large to reevaluate their priorities in respect to Iran, “there would be no room for campaigning for human rights when cities are bombed and civilians slaughtered.”
NILA’s message echoes the sentiments of a recent article published by the Washington Post about ordinary Iranians who are increasingly fearful of an international attack and the regime’s posturing against such a prospect.

“Instead of sharing that sense of defiance, however, many ordinary Iranians are increasingly worried that war could be catastrophic.”
“Members of Iran’s urban middle class — from bus drivers to lawyers and artists — say they feel increasingly caught between the defiant behavior of their rulers and the pressures exerted by the West, including the United States.”

When given the opportunity, those living in Iran are sending their unified message loud and clear that indiscriminate sanctions and rhetoric are  worsening their situation whilst bolstering hardline elements of the regime:

“If there is to be an oil embargo, our whole economy will crash,” said Masoud Niktab, 31, a bookseller near Tehran University. “At that point, common people will face the most hardship.”

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