Iranian authorities’ heavy quash hasn’t stopped the nationwide wave of dissent that began in September. As the uprising persists, one might ask about its prospects. Will it lead to the regime’s downfall, or will the mullahs eventually regain control? What measures will lead to the regime’s downfall? What are the possible outcomes? And how can the international community help the Iranian people?

Protests erupted in Iran following the tragic murder of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini in police custody. Within hours, protesters started chanting slogans against the entire regime while clashing with security forces.

While the uprising laid bare the regime’s fragility and looming demise, some still argue the state will crush the protests, as it did during the November 2019 uprising by killing 1,500 protesters in a few days, or use methods such as the recent chemical attacks against schools to prevent people from rising.

Others claim that the clerical regime can stay in power by making some reforms, and the Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei, can maintain the system by giving more space to the so-called “reformist” faction, as he did before.

Another popular hypothesis speaks of a possible “transition of power,” a “controlled collapse,” or a coup by the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC). Some even argue that the regime can suddenly stop its organized oppression and collapse as Shah’s regime did.

But how real are these suggestions and possibilities?

The regime has so far killed 750 protesters and arrested tens of thousands, but protests persist. This persistence in a country where the entire security apparatus is designed to crack down on demonstrations suggests that the uprising is organized in nature. This continuation is proof of the regime’s inability to control society.

Moreover, the mass killing of protesters, as security forces did in November 2019, can rapidly backfire. Desperate actions such as chemical attacks on girls’ schools might work momentarily but can have severe consequences, as they have led to popular protests with people chanting “Death to Khamenei.”

Furthermore, Iran’s society has indicated that it is done with the regime’s pretense of moderation. The myth of reformism ended in the 2018 uprising when people chanted, “Reformists, hardliners, the game is over.” Besides, Khamenei cannot accept the slightest rift in his regime, which would rapidly lead to its downfall. Therefore, he purged the rival factions’ candidate during the parliamentary elections in 2020 and appointed Ebrahim Raisi, an unscrupulous mass murderer, as president in 2021 to make clear he won’t take anything short of absolute loyalty to his policies.

In a Tuesday meeting with some of the close-knit follower base, Khamenei rejected the rival faction’s calls for a “referendum.”

“How can we put the country’s different issues on a referendum? Do all participants qualify to analyze those issues? What is this nonsense? How could there be a referendum? They speak about holding a referendum for six months to polarize society. No, this is not going to happen,” he said.

Expectations that the regime’s Revolutionary Guards might be an instrument of change are even less realistic.

The IRGC, directly overseen by Khamenei, dominates Iran’s economy and is the primary instrument of oppression, controlling every aspect of life in the country. Its grip on critical industries like oil, banking, and construction allows the regime to enrich itself at the expense of the people. Those who claim that IRGC members can turn their back on power and wealth to defect and abandon their structure, uniform, and arms are wrong. The survival of the theocracy is linked to the IRGC, and its dissolution would lead to the downfall of the regime.

Therefore, the possibility of a coup or “transition of power,” cherished and promoted by some so-called opposition figures, is absurd.

The clerical regime will continue oppression until the oppressed overcome the oppressors. It grasps at any straw to prolong its life, and suppression of dissent is its main tool.

So what is the solution?

The solution lies on the Iranian streets, where people fearlessly demand regime change and target its symbols. The organized resistance movement and its endeavors to keep the flame of uprising alit while rejecting any form of dictatorship is indeed the solution. The campaigns by the Resistance Units network affiliated with the principal opposition, Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK), despite heavy surveillance by the regime’s covert and overt agents, are cracking the wall of oppression and spreading courage in society, paving the way for further protests.

Victor Hugo once said: “When dictatorship is a fact, revolution becomes a right.” This is what Western countries should realize about the revolution in the making in Iran.

The global community can lend support to the resilient people of Iran and their organized Resistance movement by designating the IRGC as a terrorist organization and acknowledging the Iranian people’s inherent right to self-defense and to overthrow the regime.

Source » ncr-iran