IRAN Protests become more radical
Correspondence from an activist of the Marxist Organization (Iran)

Des étudiants à Téhéran, le 20 septembre : « Chère Jina (deuxième prénom de Mahsa), tu n’es pas morte. Ton nom est devenu notre symbole » « Nous ne voulons pas mourir ! »

Iran has once again descended into chaos and unrest. This outburst is not unusual in the situation of recent years, and once again the streets of major cities have turned into battlefields where those who are fed up with the theocratic regime, who want to fight against the tyranny of the mullahs who have taken over the country for the past four decades. 

The latest round of riots was triggered by the death of a young Kurdish woman, Mahsa Amini, who was arrested by the notorious « vice police ». She was hospitalized after falling into a coma, evidently after being beaten while in custody. 

The latest in a long line of violence against women 

This murder is the latest in a long line of violence against women, who are brutally abused and mistreated by police forces enforcing an arbitrary dress code imposed on Iranian women, one of which requires women to cover their hair with the mandatory veil. 

The law, which came into effect nearly a year after the 1979 Islamic revolution, has been a constant point of contention between the regime and women, a contention that has intensified over the years. But this is the first time in decades that it has been at the center of the conflict between the people and the government. People from all walks 

of life are rising up in many cities, and the fire has spread to some religious circles who see their faith as being hijacked and manipulated by the government. 

Protests become more radical, targeting the regime 

As with all similar incidents in Iran over the years, the protests quickly became radicalized, targeting the regime and its legitimacy, as well as its tyrant, the ayatollah, and his corrupt friends. In a country that has not seen free elections for more than 40 years, that is ruled by a reactionary religious despot and a bunch of corrupt people, a country whose economy is in ruins due to years of nepotism and rampant corruption, all exacerbated by international sanctions, any demonstration can easily turn into a fullscale confrontation, as is the case today. 

In addition, Kurdish opposition groups, who were present en masse at Mahsa’s funeral, have called for resistance and strikes. Reports indicate that at least eight people have died so far in clashes between government forces and rioters. 

Trade unions have lent their support to the protesters 

Isfahan, Shiraz, Tehran and almost every major city in Iran have seen similar protests, denouncing the death of the young woman and years of oppression by the 

regime. Various workers’ unions, including the teachers’ union, supported the protesters and the right of women to freely choose their clothing. 

Will this series of protests be crushed by government repression or will it give rise to a larger movement? The anger and discontent of the population certainly contributes to the hope that this movement will grow against the regime. But the lack of leadership and organization among the demonstrators makes it more likely that, like previous ones, this flame will be extinguished by the brutal repression of a regime that does not hesitate to open fire on its own citizens. 

An activist of the Marxist Organization of Iran 

September 21, 2022 


On September 13, Mahsa Amini, 22 years old, a young woman from Kurdistan (in the northwest of Iran) visiting her relatives in Tehran, was arrested by the « morality police » who accused her of wearing her veil improperly. She fell into a coma during her detention, was hospitalized and died on September 16. On September 17 and 18, protest demonstrations took place in the province of Kurdistan, which was paralyzed by a general strike the following day. On 19 September, demonstrations began in Tehran, particularly in the universities, and spread one by one to the major cities of Iran, with a strong participation of women, but also of men.