Iranian Democracy and Green Movement

Yashar Bugun

Democracy (Greek demos,”the people”; kratein, “to rule”), political system in which the people of a country rule through any form of government they choose to establish. But the major features of modern democracy include individual freedom, which entitles citizens to the liberty and responsibility of shaping their own careers and conducting their own affairs; equality before the law; and universal suffrage and education. Such features have been proclaimed in great historic documents, for example, the U.S. Declaration of Independence, which asserted the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness; the French Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, which affirmed the principles of civil liberty and of equality before the law.
This principle of democracy in my country Iran isn't comprehensive between Iranian government and even between Iranian opposition groups. My purpose in this writing isn’t to challenge Iranian government because we all know about that. As an Iranian citizen that suffers Islamic dictatorial government, I can see undemocratic manners and behaviors of opposition groups of Iranian government. I think Iranian opposition groups, they claim to bring democracy for Iran, should begin to reform in their conception from democracy and freedom. Undemocratic atmosphere have caused for shaping of undemocratic reactions in Iran.

Fundamental bases of Iranian autocracy back to harsh and cruel history of Middle East. Like other Middle Eastern countries, Iran has been crossroads of migrations, spreading of religions and wars. These factors along with foreign interferences, specially engineered policies in political and religious parts of Iran by Britannia in nineteenth and twentieth century, have strengthen Iranian individual autocracy. Every Iranian person should ask it that: Why Iranian opposition is dispersed so much? Why can't those groups come together? Do have this group any in common purpose that they agree about it?

My response for this questions is:
This so much division between opposition groups has social reasons that originate in history of Iran and Middle East. Nearly 2500 years monarchical background that monarchs (shah) and clerics (sheikh) with each other was ruling people and each other guarantees other's legality and this long time dictatorial environment has caused that Iranian people tended to individualism and with this psychical feature in each member of society and the resulting lack of belief pluralism, dispersion of Iranian opposition groups will inevitable. I think only in common purpose that causing these groups come together, is necessity of changing of Iran's government. But if opposition groups want to reform or change Islamic republic of Iran, they should initially reform themselves. They should accept that their conception from democracy is very restricted. For example each group sees world with unique eyeglasses and they bear democracy until their benefits isn’t endangered. But in global and standard definition of democracy, the rights of individuals and groups have been guaranteed until it doesn't threaten other's rights. Unfortunately this selfish definition of democracy among Iranian opposition, that recently is called green movement, is much districted and like Islamic government, green movement's attitude about non Persian ethnicities and nations is very dictatorial and tyrannical. For the reason that many activists and leaders of green movement deny the existence of non Persian nations and their rights, they don’t accept the national rights and even primary rights for example education of mother language of non Persian ethnicities. Unfortunately many leaders of green movement especially reformists and Diasporas have bad background in denying of non Persian's cultures and language. Belief to Arian theory is popular between leaders of green movement and this theory is principal reference of politicians to eliminate of other cultures and languages. There is an interesting fact that the education minister of Iran pronounced in last year. He pronounced the details of a survey established between students of schools and the results of study showed that the mother tongue of only 30% of Iranian student is Persian. This results point up a cultural genocide in Iran that has been started since 85 years ago that Pahlavi monarch government launched assimilation policy of non Persian. Azerbaijani Turks, Kurds, Arabs, Baluchs, Turkmens, Lors, Bakhtiyaris, Gilaks, Mazandaranis and other small ethnicities, consisting of 70% of Iran's population, were deprived from their rights and but our claimants of democracy like green movement's leader don’t want to accept existence of this nations and ethnicities. Totalitarian attitude of this claimants don’t allows them to deal with according to of standard democracy.