Protesters in Tehran's Azadi Square, 15 June 2009
Three weeks ago, the Iranian site Khabar Online published an extended interview with Alireza Marandi --- the physician who returned from the US to become the Islamic Republic's first Minister of Health, a minister under Prime Minister Mir Hossein Mousavi in the 1980s, and now a prominent MP from Tehran. While his name may not be well-known in the "West", Marandi's record and his "straight shooter" reputation make him a bastion of the establishment --- so when he speaks, the words carry weight.
The discussion is an extended denunciation of Mousavi, both in the 1980s and during the 2009 Presidential election. In that sense, with the former Presidential candidate now entering his 15th month of strict house arrest, it is far from surprising.
But amidst the damning of the Green Movement's figurehead, one passage deserves a feature. For Marandi's explanation of why Mousavi turned in 2009 from candidate to the would-be mastermind of "regime change" reveals how the myth was spread that Iran's protesters were merely the puppets of the "West" and the "seditious elements" within the Islamic Republic.