During the rule of Iran’s Shah, he banned Communism and for good reason. Iran’s Marxist’s Paved The Way For Islamic Revolutionaries.
An Islamic clerical theocracy rules modern-day Iran, a theocracy that from its inception, installed a confrontational regime hostile to Western powers. But how did Iran become so hostile and why?
The answer is – because of Marxism and Islamic Shia Fundamentalists.
Iran, for much of its history, was ruled by its monarchy, and as with any monarchical rule, produced its fair share of dissidents. Reza Shah was crowned in 1924; he was a secularist and restricted the influences of the Shia clergy in Iran. He made any public expressions of religion in public illegal and clamped down on the celebration of religious festivals. Reza Shah also forbade clerics from public preaching and mosques were heavily regulated.
Reza Shah’s clampdown on religiosity and religious institutions helped to foster religious extremism and a militant Islamist pushback, a perfect example of which is the murder of Ahmad Kasravi. Ahmad was a historian, a nationalist and “a true anti-cleric” in the words of New York historian Roy Parviz Mottahedeh.
Ahmad Kasravi was an advocate for an Islamic reformation, but he drew the ire of Navvab Safavi, the founder of Shiite fundamentalist group Fadā’iyān-e Islam. Two members of Fadā’iyān-e Islam stabbed Ahmad Kasravi to death during an open court proceeding. Kasravi is said to have been the target of Ayatollah Khomeini’s demand in his first book, Kashf al Asrar, which states that “all those who criticise Islam” are mahdur ad-damm, which means their blood must be shed by the faithful.
To this day Navvab Safavi, the founder of Fadā’iyān-e Islam, is revered and celebrated by Irans Revolutionary Islamist Mullahs, not least by the current supreme leader of Iran, Ali Khamenei who said:
“I have no doubt that it was Navab Safavi who first kindled the fire of revolutionary Islam in my heart.”
From Marxists To Mad Mullahs
Right up until the point of the “Islamic Revolution” in Iran, it’s very last Shah, Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi, understood the dangers of Islamic clergy and the political threat that Marxism/Communism posed to his rule. During his tenure, Mohammad Reza Shah banned Communism and realised that a new threat was burgeoning in Iran, a toxic mix of Marxism and Islam.
Ultimately it was this toxic mix that brought about the Iranian revolution, on January 16, 1979, the Shah left the country, and Ayatollah Khomeini assumed control of Iran. But how did Ayatollah Khomeini manage the overthrow of the pro-Western Shah, the man who was leading his country into a new age of development, literacy, and industrial growth?
The fast pace of Iran’s economic development was in part led by the discovery of its vast oil reserves which caused some dissatisfaction among the people. The Communist/Marxist and Shiite Islamists seized on the unequal distribution of oil wealth and the Shah’s “forced Westernization” of Iran which led to a fascinating, yet deadly alliance, or should we say, a temporary marriage of convenience between two totalitarian political ideologies.
Neither the Tudeh party, (a pro-USSR party), nor the Marxist-Leninist OIPFG, could introduce Karl Marx’s “Religion is people’s opiate” into their Iranian revolutionary agenda, so they considered “anti-imperialist” Muslim movements as their strategic allies. Khomeini’s Shia Islamist movement was “their ally”. The Marxist revolutionaries energised and mobilised the working class and students to agitate for their socialist utopian dream, but they miscalculated (for the most part). Khomeini’s book was readily available to read, a book that did not hide his fascistic, misogynistic, and anti-socialist ideas, the left “ignored” the challenges of political Islam, resulting in dire consequences. Islam, as a divisive or a monolithic factor, was not taken by the left into consideration.
The Iranian revolution was, in fact, a Shia Islamist “counter-revolution” that used the “Communist/Marxist revolution” to gain power. Once the Shia clerics of Iran under the tutelage of Khomeini had wrested political control, they imprisoned and literally killed the threat of left-wing revolutionaries. As a result of the Islamic “revolution”, Iran lost its way to progress, democracy, secularism, and independence. Since it’s “revolution” Iran has become a pariah state in perpetual conflict with the West, an exporter of worldwide terrorism and a theocratic prison for its citizenry.
May the good people of Iran triumph over tyranny.