I came across a brief report from i24News, a media outlet located in Tel Aviv, Israel which covers news in Israel and throughout the Middle East. It had been a featured article on The Bongino Report which offers a unique perspective on the situation currently unfolding in Iran. I found that several other media outlets, including The Washington Examiner and The Jerusalem Post had reported on the story and incorporated interesting bits from those accounts into this post.
Former Iranian crown prince Reza Pahlavi, son of the late Shah, spoke at an event held by the Hudson Institute, a Washington-based think tank, last week. Pahlavi has lived in exile in the U.S. since his father’s government was overthrown and currently resides in Maryland.
Pahlavi called on U.S. and European leaders “to abandon any thoughts of negotiations with Tehran. Instead, he maintained that Trump should make regime change the goal of the “maximum pressure” campaign that U.S. officials have orchestrated since the withdrawal from the 2015 nuclear deal.”
He told the audience he believes that the “Islamic Republic regime could be months away from collapse but emphasized the importance of Western democracies providing aid in achieving that goal. He also noted that the present atmosphere in his home country reminds him of the days before his father was overthrown in 1978…I think the events have passed this regime, we are in a mode of a final implosion.”
Pahlavi said, “People smell the opportunity for the first time in 40 years. This time is very different from 2009, even very different from 1997. The people have had it. Today’s generation of young Iranians cannot take it anymore.”
“They want to have an opportunity for a better future. They want to be on the path of modernity and freedom. The only thing that stands between them and the free world is this regime.”
“The people of Iran need to know that there is light at the end of the tunnel. They need to have hope that they won’t be abandoned, because they have already braced and risked their lives with no support whatsoever. Imagine what they can do if they start having real support for a change — beyond rhetoric.”
He added, “All we need to know is that you are on the right side of the equations. The people are doing the job. It’s not going to be American forces. It’s not going to be an intervention of any sort.”
Pahlavi “outlined his plan for regime change, which would see Iran turn into a multiparty system. He urged Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) to stand back in order to “facilitate a smoother transition based on my strategy of nonviolent civil disobedience.”
He is not calling for American military intervention. He believes that “a clear denunciation of the regime would motivate wavering security forces to defect” explaining that, “If this message is sent loud and clear, trust me, more and more members of the military forces and paramilitary forces will say, ‘the time has finally come for us to lay down our arms and join our brethren on the streets.’ The degree to which complete demoralization occurs in totalitarian regimes is directly correlated to the degree of optimism and hope that the people facing them sense at a crucial moment in history.”
Pahlavi told the group he has no interest in returning to Iran. “I’d like to be on this side of the fence, facing the authorities and defending people’s rights so that we can establish a true democracy rather than to be in a position of governance or authority, having to be accountable to the people.”