The Political Platform of the “10 Mehr” Group for the Current Stage of Struggle*

 1. Global Developments


Our world is transitioning from a unipolar world dominated exclusively by imperialism to a multipolar world based on international laws and regulations and respect for the sovereignty of countries. The emergence of China as an alternative economic power to the United States and the tendency of more countries around the world to approach and exchange with that country rather than with the US and the West, has challenged the economic interests of the U.S. and European imperialists. On the other hand, Russia’s gradual restoration of independent power over the two decades since the dismantling of the socialist government in the Soviet Union, and Russia’s independent entry into world politics as an influential participant in international relations, have changed the equation of power globally — to the detriment of imperialist states, especially the United States.

With the entry of the Russian military into Ukraine and the refusal of many of the world’s major countries to join the U.S. and the West against Russia, this process was elevated from a gradual quantitative change to a qualitative transformation at the global level, shaping global trends more and more each day. With China and Russia growing closer to each other, and the movement of major states such as India and Brazil to adopt a balanced policy between East and West, U.S. imperialism is losing its unilateral control over the world.

With this qualitative change in global relations, countries under imperialist domination are forming a new set of financial, economic, political, and military ties with China and Russia on the one hand, and between themselves on the other hand. This is increasingly resulting in the political, economic and financial isolation of the imperialist camp globally.

Today, countries with differing political and economic systems and varying degrees of justice and freedom for their domestic populations are strengthening ties with each other with joint economic, political, and military treaties, regional and trans-regional, by which they are increasing their ability to resist economic pressures, sanctions, and military threats from the imperialist war machine, NATO. The following list of major treaties and collaborations illustrates the magnitude of developments in recent years:

1. The Regional and Trans-regional Treaties:

Expanding Shanghai Cooperation Organization: This organization currently accounts for 40 percent of the world’s population. Its member countries account for about $21 trillion in economic volume and 25 percent of the world’s gross domestic product. In 2023, the total trade of the Shanghai Organization reached $6.6 trillion. This organization is one of the few in which Western countries are not involved in the structure of its membership, management process, and decision-making. This organization rejected the United States’ request for membership in 2005.

Formation and expansion of BRICS: This alliance comprises half of the world’s population and between 25% to 28% of the global economy’s capacity. It has great potential to influence the global economy. BRICS is considered a transcontinental coalition, doubly important for defining a new paradigm of global economics and politics. This powerful global coalition is formed without the participation of Europe and the United States and has the potential to be a strong voice in international economic and political debates. BRICS has 24% of global GDP, constitutes 16% of global trade and its plan to expand in the form of “BRICS Plus,” will include ten countries, in 2024.

Increased power of the Union of Oil Exporting Countries in the form of OPEC and OPEC Plus: In recent years, OPEC coordinates with Russia, forming OPEC Plus, also concluding new economic cooperation agreements between China and the major oil exporting countries in the Middle East, enabling OPEC countries to further resist U.S.-imposed policies. A clear example is OPEC Plus’s recent decision to cut its oil production despite the discontent of imperialist countries.

The Chinese Belt and Road Initiative: Creating numerous trading partners for China with the result that many countries, especially in the Global South, now enjoy better prospects of healthier development of their economies.

The Eurasian Economic Union: First formed by Belarus, Russia and Kazakhstan in 2010, with Armenia and Kyrgyzstan joining in 2015. The EEU is the most important step for trade-economic integration in the region of the former Soviet Union. Thailand, New Zealand, Tanzania, and Turkey are seeking trade deals with the EEU, and the Islamic Republic of Iran has signed an agreement. In 2023, the total gross domestic product of the EEU, representing a population of 185.4 million, was more than 2.4 trillion dollars. The volume of transactions among member states between 2015 and 2022 increased 59% (or 83.3 billion dollars).

Growing strategic closeness between China and Russia: China’s and Russia’s cooperation in energy, military, finance, and banking are yielding further independence from dollar-based currency for trade exchanges, helping create a system free from Western control over financial transactions around the world.

2. The Economic Cooperations:

The switch away from using the U.S. dollar towards using the Chinese Yuan as the dominant currency for international trade is increasing. For example:

• The Chinese Oil Company and France’s Total Company make their deals in Yuan.

• Brazil and China agreed to use Yuan in bilateral trade, instead of U.S. dollars.

• Starting in 2023, Bolivia began to use Yuan in foreign trade.

• Iran, Russia, India, and China will use the Yuan in their dealings with Brazil; and Russia has announced that it will try to conduct all its transactions with Yuan.

• According to some news reports, Saudi Arabia is also looking to switch to the Yuan.

• Russian oil sellers have offered to accept payment in Yuan from Chinese buyers.

• The Pakistani government, in response to the devaluation of its currency against the dollar, has decided to make all payments to Chinese companies in Yuan.

• In February 2023, the Iraqi Central Bank announced that, beginning 2024, it will start using Yuan in its foreign trade.

• China has signed an agreement with Venezuela to buy Venezuelan oil (with discount) and pay in Yuan.

• and other examples.

3. Political Cooperations:

Today, with the mediation of states such as Russia and China, improved political relations have developed between countries that had very hostile relations with each other. This approach is increasingly preventing the interference of imperialist powers in different parts of the world. For example:

• With China’s mediation, Iran’s and Saudi Arabia’s relations have improved dramatically.

• Egypt, Ethiopia, and Sudan jointly decided to resolve their differences around the Renaissance Dam (Ennahda) through Moscow’s mediation. During his presidency, President Donald Trump threatened to bomb the dam to resolve these differences.

• China’s and Russia’s political relations with African countries are improving. After military coups in the Sahel countries of Niger, Mali, and Burkina Faso, national independent governments came to power. The European Union and U.S. imperialists responded by curtailing political relations and issuing crushing sanctions to the young governments. But Chinese and Russian support provide a protective shield against imperialist E.U./U.S. pressure.

• A similar trend can be seen among Latin American anti-imperialist countries, such as Venezuela, Nicaragua, and socialist Cuba. Political support from China and Russia has provided them with greater security against the aggression of U.S. imperialism.

In response to this growing global trend, the imperialist powers, especially the United States, have focused all their efforts on disrupting the progress of anti-imperialist countries by applying lethal economic pressures, and threatening or carrying out military interventions. Another tactic is destabilization of governments that are joining the anti-imperialist front of nations and are moving towards rapprochement with China and Russia.

It is also important to note that the establishment of a multipolar world based on the rule of law does not inherently lead to a global order based on justice and freedom. The struggle for a world free from unilateral domination by imperialism cannot be brought about by abandoning the struggle for social justice and democratic freedoms for the masses of people around the world.

Achieving true social justice and the peoples’ democratic rights requires a careful understanding of historic conflicts and contradictions, both global and national, along with the new complexities that stem from changes in global trends. The reality is that today’s chain of contradictions cannot be resolved separately, but should be, according to Lenin, approached at each particular moment by grasping the particular link in the chain that enables one to move the whole chain. This decisive link today is the unity of action of all peoples, forces, and countries suffering under the economic, political, and military domination of imperialism into a single global front for the transition to a more balanced multipolar world.

If we accept that the cohesion, strengthening, and success of this global front is a necessity for achieving the stated objectives, including the national ones, then we must recognize that any uncalculated action that undermines the power of resistance of this front, or even aims at overthrowing any of its constituent governments, would only serve to weaken this anti-imperialist front, and as the past three decades have shown, would only result in the defeat of the national struggle itself. And this is the red line that every progressive and revolutionary force must consider at any given moment.

But the struggle to strengthen the global resistance front does not in any way mean also defending the undemocratic and repressive constituent governments within it. Nor does it mean renouncing the legitimate struggles of the masses fighting to achieve democratic rights and social justice within their respective nations. Paying attention to this red line only means adopting only such methods of national struggle that do not undermine the international anti-imperialist struggle that is aimed at eliminating the main global contradictions as a path to the resolution of national contradictions.

This is especially important in the case of the Islamic Republic of Iran and its increasing role in the formation and strengthening of this resistance front. Iran’s strategic geographic location in Asia and the Middle East; its increasing military defense strength; its ability and readiness to circumvent imperialist sanctions and its assistance to other countries to resist sanctions; and the key role it plays as a strategic bridge between the various transnational treaties in Asia, Eurasia and Latin America; all point to the fact that the elimination of these key roles by weakening or overthrowing the government of the Islamic Republic in the current momentous situation would only serve the goal of imperialist powers to crush this burgeoning international front. There is no doubt that the imperialist powers and their allies, especially the U.S. and Israel, would happily welcome and assist such a move. And in this process, the political dependence or independence of the forces of carrying out this pro-imperialist project makes no difference for the catastrophic consequences of such a move for both the global anti-imperialist movement and for the people of our homeland.


2. The Developments in Iran


The negative political, economic, and social developments arising from the domination of Iran by a neoliberal pro-West bourgeoisie over the past few decades have greatly changed the main contradiction of the current phase of the National-Democratic revolution and its foundational demands of independence, liberty, and social justice.

The profound changes and distortions in the country’s economic and political structure over the past forty years — the astronomical concentration of wealth, extreme expansion of poverty and unemployment, the deepening class divide, the suppression of political and social freedoms, and the consequent weakening and disorganization of the working class — have led to the distancing of a large section of the population from the state. The initial democratic demands of the revolution have taken a more radical anti-neoliberal content, and the struggle for democratic rights and social justice has become a strategic necessity for safeguarding the country’s independence. On this basis, the expropriation of the pro-West bourgeoisie and the removal of economic and political damage from neo-liberal policies has become a strategic necessity for the revolutionary process at this stage.

Clearly, the tactical plans and objectives should also be laid out in connection with such a perspective. Under the present conditions, the provision of democratic rights and social justice has become an undeniable necessity for maintaining the independence of the country because only in this way the political army of the toilers of the country can be mobilized for the coming struggles, and the necessary social force can be mobilized to put an end to the growing dependence of the country’s economic structure on the West, which is the main cause of inequalities and discontent in society.

These considerations must guide and shape the strategic and tactical goals of the forces of scientific socialism. What needs to be emphasized in this regard is that the two strategic aspects of the national-democratic revolution — the struggle to defend the independence of the country, on the one hand, and the realization of social justice and people’s democratic rights, on the other — are intrinsically linked, and the struggle for one cannot be waged at the expense of the other. Paying attention to this fact, especially for safeguarding the independence and territorial integrity of the country in the current critical situation, is of critical importance.


Our Assessment of the State of the Islamic Republic of Iran


At present, we consider the main class character of the Iranian State as the dictatorship of the big bourgeoisie, especially its pro-West wing. And there is no doubt that the political superstructure of the State in Iran is shaped by its bourgeois class character. However, we believe that the functioning of the ruling political power at any given juncture is influenced by the balance of power between the various factions of the ruling class. Therefore, the establishment of a genuinely democratic State in Iran could only be achieved through the removal of the control of the big bourgeoisie over the State. For this reason, we consider the struggle against various layers of the ruling big bourgeoisie, and not the superstructure of the State itself, as the main axis of the struggle.

The Present Class Composition of the State

Today, the ruling circle of the Islamic Republic consists of various layers of the big bourgeoisie’s representatives — commercial, bureaucratic, rentier, and financial — as one dominant power bloc, alongside the “Supreme Leader” [Vali-e Faqih] as the representative of various factions of the traditional petty bourgeoisie and the lower strata of the Iranian society, who played a decisive role in the 1979 Revolution. From the economic point of view, the interests of the various layers the big bourgeoisie, despite some differences, are deeply intertwined within the current neoliberal economic framework. As a result, these bourgeois factions can be regarded as one single bloc with pro-West neoliberal economic policies.

But the class composition of the State and the balance of forces within it have undergone decisive changes since the victory of the 1979 Revolution. Hence, it is necessary to understand these changes to better understand the present situation.

In the early years after the victory of the Revolution, due to the revolutionary atmosphere that prevailed in society, and the ineffectiveness of the newly empowered bourgeoisie, Ayatollah Khomeini’s role as the leader of the revolution and the “Supreme Leader,” and representative of the petty-bourgeois and lower strata of society, was very decisive in shaping economic and political processes. At the same time, the interests of the various layers of the bourgeoisie — at the time: commercial, bureaucratic, and pro-West liberal — within the ruling circle were not as intertwined as it is today, as each of them sought to advance their own specific class interests inside the State. As a result, a “jockeying battle” began within the ruling circle, the result of which would determine the future of the country and the Revolution. The scientific and revolutionary policy of the former leadership of the Tudeh Party of Iran in defense of the “anti-imperialist and popular line of the Imam [Khomeini]” during the years 1979 to 1982, was formulated and pursued precisely on the basis of the concrete understanding of the existence of such a “jockeying battle” among the various faction of the bourgeoisie within the Iranian State, and was aimed at defending of the interests of the working masses of society.

But the plots of U.S. imperialism against the Revolution — the assassination of the progressive leaders of the Revolution by terrorist agents affiliated with the CIA, repeated attempts to carry out a coup d’état, the U.S. sanctions, and above all the U.S.-instigated Iraq war again Iran, which provided the opportunity for the bourgeoisie, especially the commercial bourgeoisie, to accumulate astronomical amounts of capital — disrupted the balance of forces within the State in favor of the bourgeois layers. Following this shift in the balance of forces, the process of extensive privatization and the imposition of neoliberal economic policies began, which not only contributed to the further growth of their economic power but, consequently, led to their increasing political power within the State. In this process, the independent role and influence of the “Supreme Leader” on political and economic processes was diminished. Step by step, the power of the “Supreme Leader,” as representative of the petty-bourgeoisie and the lower social strata within State was weakened and he was reduced to a junior partner of the fattened layers of the big bourgeoisie and the enforcer of of their policies.

Thus, with the complete domination by the big-bourgeoisie factions, the “jockeying battle” within the State’s ruling circle ended and the struggle was transferred to the society as a whole. For nearly four decades, the big bourgeoisie, in pursuit of its exploitative neoliberal policies, dominated the State and was able to use the pretext of foreign threats and pressures to impose a security-state on society and suppress the demands of the people’s movements, especially of Iranian workers. By creating corrupt and mafia-style economic networks, and behind-the-scenes collusions between various “insider” factions, the dominant big bourgeoisie achieved an unprecedented level of accumulation of capital, creating a massive class divide that has brought society to an explosive situation today.

The Political Superstructure

Focusing on the struggle against the layers of the big bourgeoisie inside the State in no way underestimates or ignores the importance of the struggle for transforming the superstructure of State. The experience of more than four decades since the 1979 Revolution speaks to the fact that no real revolutionary development can be advanced by sacrificing social liberties and trampling on democratic rights of the masses, especially the progressive classes and strata of society.

But as far as the question of the exercise of the State power is concerned, first and foremost the dialectical relationship between the current “form” of the State power and the competing interests of the ruling classes within it — i.e., how the “form” of exercise of political power is influenced by the balance of forces between representatives of the different classes within the ruling circle — must be clarified.

Historically, since the Revolution, Velayat-e Faqih [Guardianship of the Jurist] as a (Shi’ite) religious institution, has had the role of managing the affairs of the entire Islamic Republic by adopting policies that reflect the balance of class forces in society at each stage. At the beginning of the Revolution, when the balance of forces was more toward the lower classes of society, the policies of the “Vali-e Faqih” (“Supreme Leader”) were mainly oriented toward the interests of the “oppressed.” But with the gradual domination of pro-West neo-liberal bourgeoisie during the last decades, the policies of the “Supreme Leader” inevitably moved toward the interests of those classes. With the continued growth of big capital, the relative independence of the “Supreme Leader” from the bourgeois layers within the ruling circle was reduced and its role was limited to justifying and legitimizing the policies of the bourgeois-dominated State. Ayatollah Khomeini’s changed positions in the last years of his life from “the proof of peasant’s ownership [of the land he sows] is the callous on his hands” to “the Revolution is indebted to the merchants as well,” — a shift that Prof. Ervand Abrahamian has correctly called Ayatollah Khomeini’s move “from left populism to right populism” — shows this undeniable fact.

Despite this, however, the “Supreme Leader” has maintained support from the urban and rural petty-bourgeoisie and the lower strata of society due to the religious beliefs of the masses of people and his pro-justice slogans in support of the dispossessed, on the one hand, and his uncompromising defense of the independence and territorial integrity of the country, on the other. In our view, so long as layers of the big pro-West bourgeoisie inside the government have not firmly consolidated their dominant position at all levels of society, they will continue to use the religious structure of the State to establish legitimacy and maintain their power. But if they manage to impose their full hegemony over the entire State apparatus, one can expect that they will move quickly to weaken the religious character of the State and transform it into a more classical form of capitalist dictatorship that is more acceptable to imperialism.

On this basis, it can be said that those who have put the struggle against “Velayat-e-Faqih” [Guardianship of the Jurist] at the top of their present fighting agenda, not only fail to see — from a Marxist point of view and in clear violation of Marx’s dialectics — the relationship between form and content, but they also see the superstructure as the cause and the base as the effect. And in doing so, they are helping to guarantee the hegemonic domination of the pro-West big bourgeoisie in Iran, and through it facilitating imperialism’s effort to end the country’s independence and territorial integrity.

Turning Toward the East and the New Alignments
Within and Around the State

China’s emergence as a competing economic power to the United States, and more decisively the entry of the Russian military into Ukraine with NATO’s direct military engagement with Russia, upset all existing equations both for the United States and Iran. This new situation has forced both the U.S. and Iran to face the inevitable choice of “either this or that,” making it impossible for them to continue their equivocal policies toward each other. This new situation showed not only to the U.S. and Iran, but also to many other countries that it is no longer possible to sit between two chairs and that they must choose sides in this global battle.

A segment of the Iranian State, especially the faction which is the representative of the petty-bourgeoisie and the lower layers of society, with an understanding of the general course of world developments against imperialist unilateral domination, and aware that imperialism will not tolerate a powerful State in Iran, decided to adopt a pro-East policy. This led the U.S. to change its policy toward Iran and revert to the big stick policy that we are witnessing today. It also led to a serious struggle within the Islamic Republic’s ruling circle, and the removal from position of power, in recent presidential elections, of a section of the pro-West faction.

This turn began under the guidance of the “Supreme Leader,” as representative of the petty-bourgeoisie and the lower strata of society, within the State, who, since the beginning of the Revolution, has been witnessing the gradual decline of his power to influence State policies — and until recently had no choice but to surrender to the power of representatives of various factions of the big bourgeoisie within the State. Some layers of the big bourgeoisie within the State, especially commercial and bureaucratic layers, who, due to the punishing U.S. sanctions, had lost the possibility of capital accumulation through trade with the West, joined the process in the hope of reviving their capital accumulation through deals with the East. As a result, the balance of forces within the ruling circle changed, albeit in a very fragile way, in favor of Eastward leaning supporters.

The cementing of the Islamic Republic’s pro-East position at the international level, and the elimination of pro-West forces from some sections of the political structure, which led them to become a formal opposition, changed the power equations at inside the country. The pro-West faction, which until recently acted as a loyal member of the system, acting within the country’s political framework, is now increasingly turning to Western governments to reclaim its lost positions. At the same time, it is trying to ride the wave of popular protests against the very neoliberal policies they themselves have imposed. And this is the new factor that, in the current crisis, could jeopardize the security and territorial integrity of our country. It is based on the understanding of this internal situation that the imperialist governments have now entered the scene with all their economic and propaganda capabilities to ride the wave of legitimate protests by our people, and help to confiscate the just movement of our people for the pro-West domestic forces, to organize a velvet revolution and bring Iran back to the laps of the West, or if possible, bring about a complete partitioning of Iran.

Now, with the Islamic Republic’s Eastward turn and the removal of some of the influential representatives of the pro-West neoliberal bourgeoisie from parts of the political structure of the State, the situation has changed. If, before this Eastward turn the neoliberal bourgeoisie found its interests in helping to strengthen the State of the Islamic Republic and its repressive domestic policies to advance its own interest, today this same bourgeoisie has realized that the pro-East policy conflicts with its interests and is therefore ready to publicly join the ranks of the opposition, and put all its financial, economic, and even media resources in the service of confronting the State of the Islamic Republic. That is why today we see this class and its various layers, which until yesterday were accumulating wealth by taking advantage the police-state policy of suppressing the democratic rights of the Iranian toilers, are suddenly raising the cry for democracy and human rights in Iran, with the aim of taking the leadership of the protest movement of the Iranian people and steering it toward the West.

Today, this bourgeoisie, with all its economic might, is standing up against the State of Islamic Republic and its pro-East policy; and it can use all its power, with the support of the United States and its allies, to shape the course of domestic processes in Iran. The fate of this decisive battle between pro-East and pro-West forces more than anything else depends on whether the pro-East forces are willing and able to make the necessary domestic economic and political changes in the interest of the working masses of the country and regain their trust. Any failure or delay in doing so, given the plans of the United States and its allies to exploit the divisions within Iran, could result in the eradication of the independence and territorial integrity of Iran.

Thus, a “jockeying battle” has once again taken shape within the Iranian ruling circle, with the pro-West neoliberal bourgeoisie on the one side, and pro-East forces, under the leadership of the “Supreme Leader” and representatives of the petty bourgeoisie and lower strata of society, who for four decades have suffered under the economic policies of the pro-West neoliberal bourgeoisie, on the other. Although this new battle, unlike the previous one, does not have a class character and is going on only at the political level between pro-West and pro-East factions, nevertheless its outcome will have very serious class consequences for Iranian society and the future of the country.

One cannot doubt for a moment that the failure of the pro-East policy will have disastrous consequences for the people of our country, especially for the workers and other lower strata of society. And these disastrous consequences will not be limited to the consolidation and continuation of neoliberal economic policies and further growth of poverty and deprivation in Iran. The U.S. and its domestic bourgeois supporters will move with all their power to put an end to any form of internal resistance, and there is no doubt, as history has shown, the first victims will be Iran’s working class and its anti-imperialist left-wing forces who support them. The resistance front will collapse at the regional level. Israel, with the help of the United States, will once again become a dominant power in the region, and the question of the rights of the Palestinian people will be buried under the soil of a single-state Zionist regime. The balance of forces in the international arena, given Iran’s decisive role in it, will change against the interest of China and Russia and other national liberation forces, and it will once again give the United States and its allies a free hand to become a sole contender around the world and in the region.

It is therefore quite clear that the fate of the Iranian working class and the left anti-imperialist forces supporting them is directly linked with the outcome of this new battle inside the State of Islamic Republic of Iran. But we cannot wait and leave the fate of this decisive historical battle to be determined only factional conflicts within the ruling circle. The interests of the Iranian working class and its political representatives dictates that they enter into this decisive battle for the fate of their class and their country, actively, openly, and without fear of stigma and labeling, and carry out the responsibility laid before them by history today.

And this can only be possible by having a concrete understanding of the primary and secondary contradictions in the present situation, an objective demarcation of the real defenders of the Revolution from the ranks of the counterrevolutionaries without any ideological or religious biases and taking concrete practical steps to strengthen those forces whose victory in this battle can pave the way for the advancement of the initial goals of the 1979 Revolution.


Current Primary and Secondary Contradictions
and The Necessity of a Leninist Understanding of the
Dialectical Relationship between Co-existing Contradictions


From the Marxist-Leninist point of view, in the stage of imperialist dominance, the global contradiction between labor and capital manifests itself in the form of the contradiction between imperialism and the oppressed masses of the world, whose main interest lies in defending their sovereignty and independence against political, economic, and military domination by imperialism. However, within the context of this global contradiction, there appear other secondary contradictions — such as between freedom and dictatorship, poverty and wealth, and national, ethnic, and cultural conflicts — which, depending on the stage of development and historical conditions of each country, one or more of them may assume a decisive role at a certain stage of the struggle. Based on this, identifying which of the contradictions are prominent at any given stage of the struggle, and which contradiction should be placed at the top of the agenda of the struggle, is a very serious and decisive task that must be done responsibly based on a concrete, all-round analysis of the international situation as well as the internal situation of each country. Any failure in distinguishing the primary contradiction from among the chain of contradictions, and insistence on resolving other, secondary contradictions before the primary one, will inevitably lead to serious harm to the whole movement and ultimately its failure.

It has been precisely with the aim of breaking the back of the resistance front at the international level that imperialism has been for a long time trying to redirect the attention of the national movements, mainly in the resisting countries, toward such secondary contradictions as related to issues of “dictatorship” and “violation of human rights,” in order to change the direction of the struggles and focus their attention on a issues in the chain of contradictions that not only have no negative impact on the current framework of imperialist domination, but, on the contrary, help imperialism’s own programs. In other words, imperialism tries to instill in the minds of the oppressed masses that achieving social justice, democratic freedoms and human rights is possible under the conditions of global imperialist domination, and that such struggles can be successful within the national framework independently of the main contradiction that prevails at the international level. Its message to these movements: “Onward with overthrowing the dictators that are resisting imperialism! We are on your side in this struggle.”

But many historical examples have proven the bankruptcy of such an approach. We ask: Has anyone seen even one example of the victory of such struggles to achieve “democracy” and “human rights” since the collapse of the socialist camp and the unipolarization of the world? Have any of the “anti-dictatorship” struggles within the national framework — in Iraq, in Egypt, in Libya, and other countries — brought “democracy” and “human rights” to the people of those countries? Has imperialism ever allowed, or as long as it exist will ever allow these struggles to succeed within the limited national framework? After the overthrow of these governments, has the condition of the people of any of those countries improved? Hasn’t this one-sided prioritization of the struggle for “democracy” and “human rights” within a single country led to the partitioning of these countries and the loss of any ability to resist the imperialist plans for more domination? Shouldn’t a struggling nation assess the consequences of its actions at any given moment and direct its moves based on the costs and benefits of each action?

Experience has shown that the one-sided prioritization of the struggle for “democracy” and “human rights” within each country separately has led to the breakup of these countries and the loss of their ability resist, thus serving the imperialism’s plans for greater domination over the world. Even after the victory of revolutionary and progressive forces in countries such as Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua and Bolivia, imperialism has not for a moment loosened its grip around their throats and has not spared any effort to overthrow their governments. Aren’t these facts convincing reasons for creating and strengthening a united front against imperialism? And hasn’t this historical necessity now placed Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua, and Venezuela in a united front of resistance against imperialism alongside countries like the Islamic Republic of Iran?

Considering all these facts, the only correct approach is to resolve the national contradictions in the context of, and in accordance with, the requirements of the main contradiction at the global level — i.e., the contradiction between the whole of humanity and imperialism — since imperialism today has left no other choice for the peoples of the world. And on this difficult path, a combative nation must take account of the consequences of every move it makes at any moment, and organize its actions based on its costs and benefits for the movement.

Sanctions, Neoliberalism, and the Question of National Security

The problem facing the State of the Islamic Republic of Iran today is the fact that the millions of toilers whose support is the only guarantee for the country’s internal security and the success of its pro-East policy are the very same people who have witnessed the destruction of their welfare, livelihoods, and fundamental rights due to the unscrupulous privatizations by neoliberal economic policy; severe economic exploitation; and the suppression of their legitimate protests over the decades. And as we have witnessed in recent months and years, the imperialist powers have used every opportunity to re-direct this accumulated and rightful anger to toward the destabilization of the country. And this is the most important danger that threatens the security and territorial integrity of our country today — a danger that no military and/or security capability can neutralize by itself.

Thus, it can be said that today the internal threat to Iran’s national security is more serious than the external one. For decades, the big pro-West neoliberal bourgeoisie within the Iranian Ruling circle, who has shared power with other factions within the political structure of the State, has been the greatest beneficiary of repressive policies. Taking advantage of the repressive policies of the security-conscious State, the pro-West neoliberal bourgeoisie prevented all attempts at organizing independent trade unions, professional associations, and political parties. They opened the floodgates for indiscriminate privatizations and weakened the Labor Law by excluding workshops with less than ten workers from the provisions of the Labor Law and violated Article 44 of the Constitution regarding the economic structure of the country, and through this, impoverished the great majority of working people while accumulating astronomical sums of capital for themselves. They seized control of the economy and delivered it, in conformity with the plans of imperialism and international capital, to the neoliberal cabal of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. It was due to this fact that, during the past few decades, the neoliberal pro-West bourgeoisie took no steps to oppose the policies of the State, while the United States, in the hope of this bourgeoisie gaining more power, adopted the above-mentioned double-sided carrot and stick policy toward the Islamic Republic of Iran.

What has heightened the danger today is the decision of the United States to resort to the stick alone — i.e., maximum sanctions, cyber sabotage, military threats, and terrorist operations — to do away with the Islamic Republic due to its increasing role in the global struggle against the U.S., on the one hand, and the neoliberal pro-West bourgeoisie’s joining the ranks of the opposition, on the other. This bourgeoisie, with its economic and financial power, can now become an effective force of opposition to the Islamic Republic’s pro-East policy, and act as a serious obstacle to any government economic concession — albeit limited — to the poorer classes of society to pacify the ongoing protests.

Relying on this situation, the United States and its allies today are pursuing the policy of promoting a vicious cycle of intensified protests and increased repression within the country to the point that the protesting dissidents end up begging the U.S. and the West to intervene as “defenders of democracy and human rights” to save them from their desperate situation. Given this fact, there is no doubt that maintaining the status quo under the present internal conditions will only serve the United States and its goals. The only outcome will be the failure of the pro-East policy, the destruction of the country’s independence and territorial integrity, and the restitution of a partitioned Iran to the lap of the West.

This has put defenders of the pro-East policy in a difficult and decisive situation: on the one hand, they face an all-out assault by Europe and the U.S. aimed at fomenting a velvet revolution that would rope Iran back into the Western orbit. On the other hand, they are internally faced with a pro-West neoliberal bourgeoisie that wields enormous financial and economic power and is now supporting the domestic opposition with the full backing of the imperialist states and their international and domestic propagandist mouthpieces. Meanwhile, the masses, who are the power capable of defending the country’s independence, territorial integrity, and the State’s pro-East policy, are themselves angry and frustrated at decades of government neoliberal policies, have distanced themselves from the government, and are protesting on the streets.

Under such circumstances, the anti-U.S. faction that looks to the East faces an inevitable choice: either continue the internal neoliberal economic status quo and intensify suppression of legitimate protests; or understand the current critical situation and take practical measures to regain the trust of a large part of the masses, by making fundamental changes to the economy, by expropriating the ill-gotten wealth and power of the pro-West neoliberal bourgeoisie, by abolishing those policies that violate social justice and people’s democratic rights — policies that were and are being imposed in violation of Iran’s Constitution — and by carrying out a serious, practical, and swift fulfillment of the needs and demands that were suppressed over the past four decades. This is a choice that will shape the future of our homeland in the context of the present global battle.

Given the fragility of the socio-economic situation and the reactionary nature of the neoliberal bourgeois factions within the State, we cannot ignore the possibility of the shattering of the present policy of resistance under increased imperialist pressures. In the present momentous circumstances, the leaders of the Islamic Republic of Iran must accept the fact that, in the absence of the support of the masses, they do not have the necessary power to resist U.S. economic and military pressures in the long-term. Therefore, for the sake of guarding the independence of the country, they must submit to a series of fundamental changes in the political, economic, and social structure of the country to prevent the social catastrophe that will befall everyone, including themselves.


The Main Axes of Struggle at the Present Stage


As noted above, if we accept that the cohesion, strengthening, and success of the resistance front against unilateral domination of imperialist powers is a necessary condition for achieving all objectives, including national ones, then we must understand that any reckless act, no matter how disguised, aimed at overthrowing the government will only weaken the front against imperialism, and ultimately, as the experience of the past three decades has shown, will lead to the failure of the national struggle itself. This is the red line that every progressive and revolutionary force must observe at any given moment. But opposing such efforts in no way means defending the undemocratic and repressive states within the front or renouncing the legitimate struggles of the masses for democratic rights and social justice. Paying attention to this red line simply means adopting such methods of struggle within the national framework that do not contradict the international battle to eliminate the main contradiction to open the way for the resolution of national contradictions.

Those who speak today of overthrowing the State of the Islamic Republic of Iran ignore not only this fact, but also the disarray that exists within Iran’s internal popular movement. The fact is that, today in Iran, an organized, coherent, and widespread mass movement that can take over the country’s affairs and lead the people’s struggles, and act as a progressive alternative to the current Iranian State, does not yet exist. Declaring war on the State, when there is no preparation among the popular forces, is nothing but committing political suicide and sacrificing the people and the country at the feet of imperialism, merely for the sake of appearing revolutionary. One must always remember this Lenin’s teaching that ultra-leftism always ends up in the camp of the right.

If the goal of the struggle is to defend the independence and territorial integrity of the country, establish social justice, and guarantee the democratic rights of the Iranian people, which we fought and continue to fight decisively to achieve, the way to achieve it is not to blindly follow imperialism’s plans to stir up emotions and turn the movement into imperialism’s pawn against the Islamic Republic. In the first phase, i.e. in the phase of trying to overthrow the Sate of the Islamic Republic, this approach might be successful with the help of imperialism. But in the second phase, i.e., the phase of shaping the future of Iran, it would be met with definite failure. To grasp this truth, all it takes is to look at the degree to which the masses, and the internal forces that fight for their rights, are organized. The popular forces whose horizon does not go beyond the first phase can only parrot the famous story of “sharing the walnuts.” In the second phase it will be the imperialists who will be dividing the walnuts, not the internal popular forces. And the share of our people in such an imperialistic division of returns will not be social justice and democratic rights.

Obviously, no patriotic and popular force in Iran can allow itself to become the tool of imperialism in its pre-planned plot against our homeland. But today we are sadly witnessing that many of the forces that consider themselves supporters of the Iranian people — and the history of their past struggles proves this — are now falling into the trap of imperialist media propaganda, and in line with this propaganda, are fueling the very fire kindled by imperialism against Iran without considering its catastrophic consequences for Iran’s independence and integrity. The current attitude of these forces is unwittingly giving legitimacy to the exiled right-wing forces affiliated with imperialism, such as monarchists, Mujahedin-e-Khalgh (MEK), and separatist forces, who are now taking the stage with the financial and organizational backing of Western security agencies, and organizing thousands of people to demonstrate against Iran in the capitals of imperialist countries. We ask these forces to look around and see with whom they are aligning themselves, and what kind of future for our homeland will result from their current actions.

Unlike these forces, we do not see Iran as a bubble floating in a vacuum. Our world today is so intertwined that the internal processes in no country can be determined solely by what is going on inside its borders. If the goal is to attain the suppressed rights and freedoms of our people, then we must choose a path of struggle that is based on a concrete assessment of all factors, both internal and external, that affect the situation. And this is only possible with cold hard thinking, not swayed by emotions, and by relying on revolutionary knowledge and patience. The first step in this direction is to avoid falling into the trap of imperialist propaganda, and by distancing ourselves from the collaborationist forces that are trying to turn Iran into another Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Libya, or Iraq, in line with the U.S. plans.

It is based on recognition of these facts that, in the present situation, we oppose the slogan of “overthrowing the Islamic Republic” — or its more disguised and misleading form of “Transition from the Islamic Republic,” which some naively think is possible in a “peaceful” way. This idea does not stem from the position of unconditional support for the State of Islamic Republic of Iran. Rather, it is based on understanding the objective realities within the global, regional, and national context, with full consideration of the interests of the millions of Iranian toilers who face the present dangerous situation. Nor does this position imply a total surrender to the State. Rather, is means the adoption of correct methods for the struggle that correspond to the requirements of the existing international and domestic conditions. The first necessary step in this direction is to work within the framework of the Constitution, to avoid chanting supposedly “revolutionary” slogans that are emanating from outside the country, and to avert falling into the abyss of imperialism-backed ultraleftism. Instead, this means trying to organize the popular class forces, especially workers and other toiling masses of the country, and creating an interconnected popular movement at the national level that is capable of imposing on the government, from below and at the grassroots level, the necessary economic and democratic transformations in favor of the interests of the workers and other toilers of our homeland.

Today, the pro-East faction, due to its chosen path and the increasing threats from the U.S. and its allies, is more susceptible to acceding to the demands of the Iranian people to safeguard its position. Our movement must take advantage of this emerging possibility to organize for the demands of Iranian toilers from below and push its legitimate demands on the government. This policy requires blocking the penetration of the slogans of the exiled pro-U.S. forces into the movement, which can trigger the repressive response of the internal right-wing forces against the people, thus exacerbating the confrontations encouraged by the United States and making the domestic political atmosphere more repressive. The movement of pensioners and teachers of the country in defense of their rights, which advances their struggles within a legal framework by relying on the provisions of the Constitution, and which has led to important victories for them, is the correct method of struggle in the context of the present momentous conditions before us.

It is only by consistent adherence to this correct method of struggle, and by keeping its revolutionary calm and patience that our patriotic popular movement can achieve more victories in a well-planned process and open the way for fundamental changes in all spheres. In the meantime, one of the important conditions for the people’s movement to achieve its goals is for the sincere left forces who defend the interests of the Iranian working people to avoid the abyss of ultra-leftist sentimentalism, which in the present situation serves only the plans of imperialism against our homeland.

In addition to the growing danger posed by the external factors and pressures which we have enumerated, during the past four decades our people have been deprived of the presence of a unified left force to lead their spontaneous struggles. Unfortunately, from the very beginning, our left movement has been suffering from two deadly diseases of ultra-leftism and divisiveness, of which it has not yet been able to rid itself. And this is a key issue the resolution of which could pave the way for the success of our future struggles. Now is time to put aside the illusion of “the more to the left, the more revolutionary” and try to arrive together at a scientific solution that corresponds to the present objective conditions of the world, the region, and Iran, and join hands to advance the revolutionary process in Iran — something we should have done from the very beginning of the Revolution.

— From the “10 Mehr” Group’s analytical document, “What Does the Primacy of the Axis of Anti-Imperialist Struggle Mean at the Present Stage?” (February 1, 2021)


The Need for Unity of Action of All Anti-Imperialist
And Justice Seeking Forces of Iran


Historical Causes of Weakness and Division
in the Iranian Left Movement

Narrowing the factors that contributed to the retreat of the 1979 Revolution merely to the actions the ruling circle of the Iranian State prevents us from understanding other pertinent causes of this retreat. While it is true that the forces who occupied the position of leadership the revolution and controlled the State power were responsible this retreat through the suppression of the left forces, the actions of forces outside the State, and specially the Iranian Left itself, also played a role in the reversal of the course of the Revolution. This latter factor must also be taken into consideration, without which our analysis of the causes of the retreat will not be complete.

It was clear from the outset that we were facing a fierce social and class battle over the destiny of the revolution, with imperialism and domestic reactionary classes on the one side, and forces representing the working and progressive classes of society on the other. In this battle, ultimate victory would be won by the side that, first, could better organize and unify its forces, and second, could succeed in attracting and linking with the middle and lower strata of society. Due to the class structure of Iranian society, these strata constituted a large share of social forces and, independent of the wishes of the left forces, were adherents of religious world view. The task, more than anything else, was to create direct relations with the middle and lower strata of society and their political representatives; to try to organize their forces from below; and to bring them into a united front of all popular forces to change the balance of power to favor the revolution and against the reactionary classes of society.

The Tudeh Party of Iran was the only major left force in the country that correctly understood the anti-imperialist and democratic nature of the 1979 Revolution from the very beginning. The Tudeh Party used all its strength to build relations with the forces defending the interests of the workers and the middle strata of society (both religious and non-religious), to expose the plots of the reactionary forces and of imperialism against the revolution, to organize a united front of progressive anti-imperialist forces to defend and deepen the revolution, and to create pressure from below to direct the economic and social policies of the State and the leadership of Revolution. Although our party, like all other forces, had its own share of mistakes in carrying out this policy, this did not in any way contradict the correctness of the general policies of the Tudeh Party of Iran during this period. These errors, mainly caused by Party leadership’s delay in reviewing certain policies in response to the changing balance of forces within the State, mainly contributed to the Party’s susceptibility to an attack by reactionary forces and imperialism, which ultimately allowed forces to deliver the deadliest and bloodiest blows to our Party.

Unfortunately, most of the Iranian Left forces committed grave mistakes regarding the creation of a united front of the people’s forces, which was in fact the only way to guarantee the eventual victory of the 1979 Revolution. Because of their ultra-leftist sectarian approach, these forces not only failed to establish any proper and effective relationship with the middle and lower classes to organize a joint struggle with these classes against reaction and imperialism, but they even refused to participate in a United Left Front — with the exception of rapprochement between the Tudeh Party and the People’s Fadaiyan Organization of Iran (Majority) — that could create a coordinated Left movement with a common strategy for the advancement of the struggle. These left forces not only acted separately from each other, but in many cases their policies contradicted each other, thus nullifying each other’s efforts. These contradictions sometimes went so far as to lead to serious political, sometimes even armed, confrontations between some of them. This situation severely weakened the position of the Left movement as a whole against the united front of the right-wing forces and imperialism.

The lack of a correct and common understanding of the anti-imperialist and democratic nature of the 1979 Revolution was one of the important factors that contributed to the emergence of such contradictions and divisions in the Left movement. Many of these forces mistakenly regarded the phase of the Iranian revolution as “socialist” and, based on this misconception, adopted such slogans and forms of struggle that not only had no relation to the class structure of society and the subjective state of the working masses of the country, but also led to the further distancing of the masses from them. The armed struggle by some leftist forces against the government in Khuzestan, Turkmenistan, Amol, Kurdistan, and other parts of the country, although often motivated by the desire to defend the rights of workers and oppressed nationalities of our homeland, lacked a correct understanding of the anti-imperialist nature of the Revolution and the absolute need for a single united front of all supporters of working people. Thus, they not only failed but provided the reactionary forces with the excuse to suppress Iran’s progressive and revolutionary forces. The Mojahedin Khalgh (MEK)’s highly destructive function as a left-wing religious organization, which from the outset pursued an sectarian, authoritarian and extremist policy in dealing with the government and other progressive and leftist political forces in Iran, was yet another example of a lack of basic understanding of the nature of imperialism and the absolute necessity for a single front.

Such ultra-leftist actions allowed the reactionary forces within the State to create divisions in the ranks of the progressive anti-imperialist forces by claiming the existence of “contradiction” between Marxism and Islam. And through this, they succeeded to suppress the popular forces engaged in the battle against imperialism and reaction within society, and to weaken such tendencies within the State.

All these objective and subjective factors led to the failure to build a united front of all progressive and anti-imperialist forces that could defended the interests of Iran’s working class against the growing layers of domestic bourgeoisie and imperialist conspiracies. The failure to form this front, which allowed the suppression the progressive and revolutionary forces of the country by the right wing, was one of the major factors that changed the balance of class forces in Iranian society to the detriment of the workers, toilers, and other lower layers, caused a full right-turn by the State and resulted in the ultimate political retreat of the 1979 Revolution.

Collapse of the Socialist Camp and the Ensuing Ideological Confusions

It was precisely in the context of these developments that the Iranian Left movement faced another historic catastrophic event, i.e., the dissolution of the Socialist State in the USSR and the collapse of the Socialist Camp; a catastrophe that led to serious ideological confusion and the growth of social democratic tendencies in many left and Communist parties and organizations, both around the world and in Iran. If up to then the existing division in the Iranian Left movement was caused by theoretical, analytical, and political differences in dealing with the 1979 Revolution, the State and the system that emerged from it, and the role of religion and Islam in the process, with the collapse of the socialist camp this division took on much more serious ideological dimensions and spread through almost the majority of Iran’s left organizations and parties, including a part of the present leadership of the Tudeh Party of Iran.

With the collapse of the socialist bloc of nations and the full economic, political, military, and propaganda power of imperialism worldwide, the ideological battle’s central focus was directed at Marxism-Leninism and Lenin’s theses on imperialism. Following the longstanding tradition of social democracy, the newborn Social Democrats tried to attribute the roots of the problems of the existing socialism to Leninism. They claimed that the collapse of the socialist camp marked the “defeat of Leninism” and claimed that the collapse was the direct and inevitable consequence of what they called Lenin’s “incorrect” theses on imperialism, the socialist revolution, and the revolutionary role of the vanguard party of the working class. They tried to distance Marx from Lenin — and sometimes even Marx from Engels — to show that Leninism, contrary to the common belief, was not a continuation and development of Marx’s theories in the era of imperialism, but was a philosophical and theoretical deviation from it, and concluded that Lenin’s theses, and especially the concept of imperialism, should be excluded from the analyses — and many of them did so.

It should be noted that such ideological conclusions inevitably have political consequences and do not remain only in subjective realm. Ideologies shape and direct the policies and political functions of organizations and parties.; ideologies draw the line between the friends and enemies of the class; they determine the primary and secondary areas of struggle; they create the motive for struggle in individuals; they define the class interests of human beings and make them move to defend their defined interests. Today, the left forces who are demanding the abandonment of Leninism without offering a “superior” ideology have only two options: either to fall back into the worn-out fabric of social democracy and the abyss of bourgeois ideology, or de-ideologize themselves and abandon class struggle altogether.

And this is exactly what has befallen most of the Iranian Left today, something that Lenin warned against more than a century ago:

Since there can be no talk of an independent ideology formulated by the working masses themselves in the process of their movement, the only choice is — either bourgeois or socialist ideology. There is no middle course (for mankind has not created a “third” ideology, and, moreover, in a society torn by class antagonisms, there can never be a non-class or above-class ideology). Hence, to belittle the socialist ideology in any way, to turn aside from it in the slightest degree, means to strengthen bourgeois ideology.

— Lenin, “What is to be done?” Collected Works, Volume 5, p. 384
Progress Publications, Moscow, 1974

When socialist ideology, and consequently imperialism, is removed from analysis, one has to look for another enemy as the cause of all present misery. Let us look around and see which social forces and phenomena have now become the main enemies of the people for an important part of the Iranian Left movement: Religion; Islam; “mullahs” and the non-Marxist category of “political Islam;” Eastern totalitarianism; and the leaders and “dictators” who are resisting imperialism; etc. Is it difficult to see that the current chaos in the Iranian Left movement, in addition to the blows inflicted by the reactionary forces inside and outside the Islamic Republic of Iran, is also a direct result of the loss of its ideological compass? Is it not the widespread propaganda of the imperialists over the past three decades, coupled with the frustrations of the collapse of the socialist camp, that has affected many of the left forces, both in Iran and globally, and has brought them to such a place? And isn’t it imperialism today that promotes ideological confusion, encourages these forces to tilt at windmills, and cheers them on to advance its own imperialist goals?

The Way Out of the Current Deadlock

If the left and anti-imperialist movement in Iran, whether Marxist or religious, wants to play an effective and decisive role in the current struggle, it must learn from history and consciously avoid repeating previous mistakes. This is especially necessary today when historic global developments have placed Iran in the center of a decisive battle for the future of all of humanity. The ongoing internal battle over opposing or surrendering to imperialism can move in the direction of the class interests of the millions-strong workers and toilers of our country only if an effective, united Left and anti-imperialist front is created. For the past four decades, the people of our homeland have felt, and are still feeling, the brunt of right-wing oppression with their flesh and blood. We cannot, and ought not, allow history to repeat itself yet again at this critical and decisive stage for Iran and the world.

A look at the two main problems that inflict the popular movement inside the country can show a way out of the current deadlock:

First, the divisions within Iran’s anti-imperialist, pro-justice and democratic rights movement – be it among the Marxist adherents of scientific socialism, or among the pro-independence Muslim forces who support social justice and democratic rights — are obstructing their ability to influence current trends in the country.

Second, the continuing mutual mistrust and distancing between the Marxist adherents of scientific socialism, on the one hand, and Muslim forces who defend the country’s independence, social justice, and democratic rights of the people, on the other — a problem for which both side bear responsibility.

The “10-Mehr” Group considers prompt action to resolve both problems as a historical necessity and an urgent task, and places resolving them at the top of its agenda. And, to achieve this goal, it proposes simultaneous moves in two decisive areas:

A. Formation of the Democratic Alliance of Iranian Anti-imperialist Left

As to the problems that exist among the anti-imperialist Left forces, we invite all Left forces who have a scientific and realistic understanding of the current trends in Iran and the world, and continue to consider anti-imperialism struggle as the primary basis of the people’s struggles for social justice and democratic rights, to put aside parochialism and sectarianism, and hostile and vengeful attitudes about the past, and act as quickly, positively, and constructively as possible to create a democratic alliance of the Left anti-imperialist forces in Iran, based on their common understanding of the present situation and the historical necessities that arise from it.

We believe that the first step in this regard is to open the way for honest dialogue and exchange of views among various currents, with the aim of laying the foundation for a common political platform for the anti-imperialist left forces of Iran that can serve as the basis for coordinating our joint struggles and daily work. We will use all our efforts to achieve this important goal.

B. Creation of a Broad Coalition of all Anti-imperialist, pro-justice Forces of Iran

To address the second problem, we propose a conscious and deliberate effort to resolve the misunderstandings and mistrust that exists between the Iranian anti-imperialist Left and the Muslim forces who defend the country’s independence and are fighting for social justice and democratic rights of the people. This can be done by opening the way for honest dialogues and exchanges on the causes and sources of the current rifts between the two sides. This will enable us to move towards creating a broad coalition of all anti-imperialist and pro-justice forces in Iran — including both religious and non-religious forces — to make it an influential united force capable of influencing and giving direction to the current trends in the country. In this regard, we say to those who continue to portray the past as a roadblock to the future: let bygones be bygones, seize the present moment and build the future; the way to build the future is not to avenge the past, but to learn from it.

In this regard, we shake the hands of all anti-imperialist defenders of social justice and supporters of the people’s democratic rights, in a joint struggle to preserve the independence and territorial integrity of the country, and to guarantee the democratic rights of the Iranian people.


The Political Platform of “10 Mehr” Group
under the Present Conditions


Main Area of Struggle: Defending the Independence
and Territorial Integrity of the Country

The current plan of U.S. and European imperialists for the countries in the region, and that plan’s serious risks to the independence and territorial integrity of Iran, has left the Islamic Republic of Iran with no other option but to resist the U.S. assault. The presence of Iranian forces in other Middle East countries, especially in Syria, is not, as claimed, due to the Islamic Republic’s “adventurism” or “expansionism” but rather a preventative and necessary defensive measure to preserve its existence and territorial integrity. This resistance must be supported by all patriotic, pro-peace, and anti-imperialist forces of Iran. We consider this as the main focus of our struggle in the current situation.

But defending the Islamic Republic’s foreign policy does not in any way mean supporting the domestic policies of its government or believing that the class forces within the State have are anti-imperialist by nature. It is true that the resistance policy of the Islamic Republic against the plans of US imperialism serves to protect the interests of some forces within the State, but it cannot be denied that in the current situation, this resistance also serves to defend the national sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country as well. This is precisely why defending Iran’s national interests and independence is intrinsically and practically linked with defending the Islamic Republic leadership’s resistance to the U.S. and European military and economic aggression, and no one, by any use of logic, can separate these two issues from each other. In the present extremely dangerous situation, we believe that weakening of this resistance, in any shape and form, will only destroy the independence and territorial integrity of Iran.

Considering this fact, we firmly support the pro-East policy of the leadership of the Islamic Republic of Iran. We strongly oppose any weakening or obstructive action — be it by agents of imperialism, by pro-West domestic forces capitulating to the West, or through covert and overt sabotages by certain individuals and institutions within and around the State. In this regard, we consider it our duty to support and defend any correct policy adopted by the State of the Islamic Republic Iran and its leadership that, while defending the independence and territorial integrity of the country, is protective of the interests of the Iranian working class. Similarly, we consider it our duty to criticize and oppose, in a constructive manner and with the aim of reforming or changing them, any policy that violates these pro-working-class principles. Our goal with this double-edged policy of support and criticism is to strengthen those forces within and around the State that continue to adhere to the initial goals of the popular and anti-imperialist revolution of 1979 and are now fighting for their realization.

In this regard:

• We oppose and actively fight against any submissive attitude toward imperialism.

• We will actively fight to expose all “alternative” projects that are linked to the imperialist plans of “regime change” that are being pursued throughout the West Asia region. The implementation of these projects will have dangerous consequences for the toilers of Iran and the region, and for the survival of our country. The strengthening of the movements for regime change, all of which are dependent on and collaborate with the West, will threaten our internal popular movement, and will prevent us from achieving fundamental transformations in favor of the working people.

• We will actively struggle to expose the pro-West collaborationist opposition in Iran and the various “color revolution” projects, and all other such tactics of identity politics, which exacerbate national, ethnic, and religious tensions to impose a new quasi-feudal order. In short, we fight for a united struggle to secure the sovereignty of the people within the framework of a single, unified Iran.

• We oppose and counter the positions of forces that define the present struggle in terms of confrontation with the religious ideology of the State, and thus blur class boundaries and lump friend and foe together in the name of opposing “religious tyranny” and “political Islam.”

The Strategic Importance of Establishing Social Justice
and Democratic Freedoms in the Current Situation

At present, the various layers of the big bourgeoisie within the State, by means of government coercion, are rapidly moving forward with implementing the neoliberal policies dictated by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, which over the course of more than four decades have forced the masses of people, especially the millions of workers and toilers of the country, to increasingly distance themselves from the State. This has become the Achilles heel of the Islamic Republic of Iran vis-à-vis imperialism.

Thus, fighting the all-out assault on the fundamental economic, political, and social rights of the masses of people is the most fundamental axis of class struggle, and the only way to thwart imperialist plots to destabilize the internal security of the country. In other words, the focus on the struggle against neoliberal economic policies has now become a strategic struggle to assure the victory of Islamic Republic of Iran’s pro-East policy of resistance against imperialism.

We believe that achieving this goal is possible mainly through confronting the socio-economic policies of the ruling big bourgeoisie, namely structural adjustment policies. The neoliberal socio-economic policies of structural adjustment conflict with the interests of all popular and democratic classes of the Iranian society. Only by tending to the demands of the masses, especially the economic demands of vast majority of them, can the goal of defending the political independence and territorial integrity of the country be achieved.

Our Tactical Considerations in the Struggle for
Democratic Rights and the Establishment of Social Justice

Moving towards the establishment of social justice and securing the democratic rights of the masses of people requires a series of periodic tactical demands at each juncture of the struggle to prepare the social conditions for undertaking more fundamental transformations. These periodic tactical moves, which at present must be carried out legally and within the framework of the present social system, should be adopted at each juncture with two important objectives in mind: (1) creation of a united front of forces who struggle for changes that benefit the masses of the people, especially the underprivileged of society; and (2) promoting any possible reforms in the economic, political, and cultural structures that would pave the way for more fundamental transformations that would benefit the masses.

To achieve the first objective requires raising those demands at each stage that brings together most popular forces and isolates the main enemy. Achieving the second objective requires raising certain demands whose implementation will weaken the big bourgeoisie’s domination over the structures of the State and prepare the ground for the more direct participation of the masses in decision-making processes in all spheres.

With all these considerations in mind, we believe the following tactical slogans and demands, which we intend to achieve, are important and decisive in the current situation:

1. Regarding Guarantees for Democratic Freedoms

(a) Making necessary changes to the laws of the country so that all policies reflect the will and vote of the people.

(b) Recognition of the right of trade unions, and professional associations for all the strata and classes of people, especially workers and other toilers of the country.

(c) Ending all security and other repressive approaches to trade union activities of workers, teachers, students, and other popular strata.

(d) Stopping all security and other repressive measures by the government agencies against people’s legitimate protests and activities.

(e) Freedom of all political parties that support the goals of the Revolution and the people’s rights.

(f) Guaranteeing the right of all patriotic forces to participate in elections and to run for office.

(g) Freedom of all independent and non-foreign-affiliated press.

(h) Release of political prisoners.

(i) Guaranteeing equal rights for women in all economic, political, and social arenas.

(j) Guaranteeing the democratic rights of national, ethnic, and religious minorities throughout the country.

2. Regarding Guarantees for Social Justice

The first necessary steps in this regard are:

2.1 In the Context of Economic Policies

The purpose of the following nine demands is to end neoliberal policies of structural adjustment and pave the way for the unconditional implementation of Articles 43 and 44 of the Constitution regarding the structure of country’s economy:

(a) Nullify the law of “General Policies of Article 44 of the Constitution,” adopted and enforced since July 1, 2006, which violates the content of Article 44 of the Constitution.

(b) Orientation toward nationalization of foreign trade, including imposition of tariffs on goods for the purpose of protection of domestic production; and imposition of State monopoly over the import of people’s necessities.

(c) Orientation toward nationalization of major banks; merging and specializing the banks; and preventing their unproductive and speculative activities.

(d) Inhibiting the operation of private financial institutions; defending small depositors.

(e) Re-establishing the Ministry of Planning and Budget to formulate a scientific and just plan for economic development and growth; monitoring the implementation of economic plans; and securing the adherence of all economic and public institutions to the adopted economic plans.

(c) Devising an orderly tax system and collecting taxes from all economic enterprises without any exception.

(g) Applying a progressive tax system to various levels of wealth and income.

(h) Allocation of the country’s foreign exchange resources for independent development of the country’s economy in line with national interests.

(i) Controlling the inflation through government supervision of the mechanisms of price formation.

2.2: Regarding the Social Rights of the Working People

(a) Full and unrestricted application of labor and social security laws to all productive units, regardless of the size and number of their employees, and nullification of all laws, regulations, and instructions that are inconsistent with these laws.

(b) Abolition of “temporary labor contracts” and exclusion of sub-contracting companies from the field of employment.

(c) Regular adjustment of the minimum wage for workers, educators, and all public and private wage earners in line with the official rate of inflation and the cost of living for the family of four.

(d) Unconditional implementation of Articles 29 (free social security and health care) and 30 (free public education) of the Constitution.

(e) Ensureing the financial independence of pension funds; settlement of government debts to these funds; and providing all social services required for persons with disabilities.

We express our readiness to work with all comrades who find themselves in agreement with us on this path and ask them to help us to further develop and concretize the positions announced in this Platform.

“10 Mehr” Group
January, 2024


* Translated from Farsi

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