The MEK in Albania - The U.S. should strive for a stable Iran. Instead, it is suffocating it. - How Iranian MEK went from US terror list to halls of Congress - Open Letter to Mr. Ilir Meta the President of Albania - Die Volksmujahedin sind fragwürdige Verbündete Washingtons in Iran - Norways ex-Ambasador to Iran:Mek group lacking legitimacy iwithin the Iranian population - Letter of Ex-NCRI member to Mr. Roald Sturla Næss ex-ambassador of Norway to Iran in support of his views about Mek - Mr. Davood Arshad reacted to the documantary of Real Story on MEK - Joseph Stiglitz: 'America should be a warning to other countries' - Medieval ‎Saudi's rights record praised by 75 UN delegations!!! - Why Trump’s Iran strategy will backfire - Disclosed financial sources of Terrorism of Mek - STOP TERRORIST Maryam RAJAVI ENTERING USA! - Secret MEK troll factory in Albania uses modern slaves - How to Get Someone Out of a Cult. NYT - The ‘political cult’ opposing the Iranian regime which has created a state within a state in Albania - Albanian secret police report: Mujahideen (MEK) may again kill defecting members in Albania as they did in Iraq - A political mystery in Paris - Letter of Mr. Davood Arshad to Arbanian Gevernment in objection to participation of its Minister of Immigration in Mek's Gathering - NTCM Strongly condemn the attempted terrorist act targeted at Mek’s gathering in Paris. - Who is Davood Baghervand Arshad Critic of the Mek - Jihadism after the Caliphate/How to counter Jihadism in Europe - Letter of Ardeshir Zahedi (ex-Iranian Foreign Minister and Ambassador to USA) to Mike Pompeo - Documentary of NBC about MEK and the list of politicians they paid - White House Examining Plan to Help Iranian People Oppose Regime - Is regime change in Iran part of Trump's agenda? - Mojahedin-e Khalq (MEK) threat in Albania - Hard facts about Mek's Terrorism - MEPs discuss Mojahedine-E Khalq (MEK) Threat in Albania - Mojahedin threat for Albania – debate in the European Parliament ‎ inShare - The Untold Story of John Bolton’s Campaign for War With Iran - The Iranian MEK in Albania: Implications and Possible Future Sectarian Divisions - Call to stop Mek's Terrorism in EU, in Protecting Whistleblowers Conf. - Albanian Center against Terrorism enlist MEK as an Extremist - EU S&D Group welcomes changes to the Law Against Drug Trafficking in Iran - NTCM disclosed Mek's atrocities in the ICSA in Bordeaux France - Iran Just Proved Trump Wrong - The pitfalls of 'impeachment diplomacy:' Lessons from Nixon in Trump's foreign trip - Iran’s President Mocks Trump’s Saudi Arabia Trip as ‘Just a Show’ - President Trump’s Mideast Contradictions - High-Control Groups: Helping Former Members and Families - Maryam Rajavi, Mek's "Propaganda Model" Advertises Her Services for Saudis and US - Israeli footprints spotted in Riyadh war room, claims activist - Saudi's War crimes in Yemen their support for terrorist Mek disclosed - Deeper into Terrorism - Mek terrorism and Money Laundering disclosed in EU Parliament - Bride of ISIS: From 'happily ever after' to hell - NTCM Attends 9th Geneva Summit for Human Rights and Democracy - A Former MEK Terrorist Member Speaks About the “Cult” of Extremism - Open Letter of Masoud Rajavi's top translator to French Parliament - Three years after escaping the abusive Maoist ‘collective’ who had held her captive since birth, Katy Morgan-Davies tells her story - Polygamous Cult leader in B.C. agrees to stop using names linked to Mormon church - The Orlando Shooting Shows How ISIS Outsources Terror - NTCM Fighting for the Children’s Right Abused by MEK Cult led by Maryam Rajavi In S & D Conference in EU Parliament - Maryam Rajavi and MEK's Past - Beware of the MEK - How to tackle Abuse of Social Media and Global Platforms by MEK and ISIS Terrorist as a real threat - Abuse of Social Media and Global Platforms by Terrorists such as MEK and ISIS a real threat - No to Terrorism-Cults Movement NTCM in EU Parliament Conferece on Freedom of Thoughts Report - Open Letter to the Chairman of the Parliamentary Assembley of the Council of Europe - Offener Brief an Herrn Alex Fischer Mitglied des Deutschen Bundestages. - Open Letter of NTCM to Ms. Asma Jilani Jahangir UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in Iran - Terrorism - The 6 Scariest Cults in Modern History - 17,000 Dead Iranians. Who Knows? Who Cares? - MP for Dohuk to Ashraf News: the Kurds do not like the MKO stay in Iraq - Living and Escaping a Terrorist Cult - Open Letter of  72 former Mojahedin Khalq members in Europe and North America to the UNHCR - Open letter of the sister of a member of the Terrorist Cult (MEK) to President Obama - No Exit: Human Rights Abuses Inside the Mojahedin Khalq Camps - Mr Arshad discolses atrocities of MEK in Geneva Human Rights Watch Summit - More Facts about Terrorist MEK of Maryam Rajavi - Terrorism: Americans in Paris, Bought by the MEK - Open Letter to the Mayer of Paris on the Occasion of Maryam Rajavi's Show in Paris - Open Letter of No to Terrorism and Cult Association to Mrs Azza Heikal - On the Occasion of Mayam Rajavi of Women Show on Feb 27, in Paris - Ex-Terrorist Cult MEK member warns the West about MEK's attrocites - Monsieur Bernard Cazeneuve le ministre de l’intérieur, de France ; - Sister of a Terrorist Cult member writes to UNHCR and Iraq Prime minister - A mother is seeking his son's release from Terrorist Cult MEK - A sister seeking his brother's freedom from terrorist Cult MEK - Cults are terrorists save our children from Cults, wrote mothers to UNHCR - Letter of MeK Cult membr's families to UNHCR to free them - Mother of Gholam Reza Shokri "Cult victim" write of UN Chief to free her son. - Letter of the parents of the victims of Rajavi's Cult to UNHCR to rescue them. - Families of members of Terrorist Cult MEK, lunched a campaign to free their beloved ones from terrorism - Open Letter of the sister of two Members of a terrorist group to free her brothers from terrorism - Terrorist Organizations Are Cults - Open letter of a High Ranking Dissident Member of PMOI (MEK) Mr. Hossein Nejad to Ulama al-Islam - Organisation des Moudjahidine de Peuples d'Iran OMPI (DIVISEES de Terroriste Culte Radjavi) - Peoples Mojahedin Organization of Iran (Splited from Rajavi’s Terrorist Cult) - Open letter of Peoples Mojahedin Khalq Iran (splitted from Rajavi Cult) to John R. Bolton - Terrorist Cult Groups must be prevented from becoming Terrorist Cult Governments - "The voices supporting the MEK are ignoring the lessons of some of the most catastrophic U.S. foreign-policy mistakes in the past few decades, urging Washington to repeat history - Terrorist Organizations Are Cults - How ISIS Recruits Around the World - As Thousands Drown Trying to Reach Freedom, Where is the U.S.? - In Attempt to Destabilize Western Economy, ISIS Will Mint Its Own Gold Dinar - Exposing those who support "Terrorism" - Social media finds Syrian refugee, dad Provides a New Start

Who Are NTCM

We believe the Iranian regime must be changed. NTCM also consists of ex-High Ranking members of MEK and National Council of resistance NCRI, who have been victims of suppression and sexual abuses by terrorist-cult MEK leaders, Masoud and Maryam Rajavi. We help MEK's victims (Women, Men and Children) to recover and report about it. We disclose the strategy set forth by the MEK cult to deceive the world about their real goals and nature, which is to bring down the Western Civilization and its Culture, by pretending to be liberals, freedom loving, women’s right advocates, and even against fundamentalism to utilize all the resources in the West to gain power, then comes as Rajavi puts it "Mek’s Glorious Victory to bring down the corrupt West". NTCM defends Democracy and Human Rights and strongly condemns terrorism in all its forms and under any excuse backed by any religion and their destructive theories by disclosing their atrocities.

NTCM’s Recent Activities


  • The MEK in Albania
    by ROBERT FANTINA The following is an interview I conducted via email with Osli Jazexhi, an Albanian-based, Canadian-Albanian historian who specializes in the history of Islam, nationalism and religious reformation in Southeastern Europe. His interest covers nationalism, radicalism, religious and ethnic … Continue reading
    arshad - January 6, 2020
  • The U.S. should strive for a stable Iran. Instead, it is suffocating it.
    By Ardeshir Zahedi and Ali Vaez Ardeshir Zahedi is Iran’s former foreign minister (1966-1971) and ambassador to England (1962-1966) and United States (1960-1962 and 1973-1979). Ali Vaez is the International Crisis Group’s Iran project director, based in Washington. We belong … Continue reading
    arshad - November 4, 2019
  • How Iranian MEK went from US terror list to halls of Congress
    Described by critics as ‘a cult’, Iranian opposition group is now lauded by top US officials as alternative to Iran’s government As soon as Maryam Rajavi, her face beaming across a giant screen, finished speaking, the sky above hundreds of her … Continue reading
    arshad - November 4, 2019
  • Open Letter to Mr. Ilir Meta the President of Albania
    Dear Mr. President, I am Davood Baghervand Arshad a UK-educated Iranian Engineer based in Germany. I was a member of Peoples Mujahidin Khalgh (MEK) of Iran and a member of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) for three … Continue reading
    arshad - October 3, 2019
  • Die Volksmujahedin sind fragwürdige Verbündete Washingtons in Iran
    (English translation follows the original article) Führende Politiker der amerikanischen Regierung unterstützen die iranischen Volksmujahedin als demokratische Alternative für Iran. Kritiker sehen dies als gefährlichen Irrweg.   Die MEK-Vorsitzende Maryam Rajavi im April 2017 in Tirana (Bild: imago) Die Geschichte … Continue reading
    arshad - January 15, 2019

How Terrorist Destructive Cults Such as ISIS or MEK work

Page 1 of 14
Organisation: Part one
The third shared component of all cults is the organisation. For small cults the organisation can be as
simple as the relationship between the members and the leader of the cult. Robin Dumber suggests
that ‘When the group acquires around 150 members. At this size, orders can be implemented and
unruly behaviour controlled on the basis of personal loyalties and direct man to man contacts. With
larger groups, this becomes impossible.’i
At This point a formal management hierarchy must be put in
place, or the group will split into competing subgroups, losing overall cohesion.’ii
As cults grow and change into more totalistic, absolute and destructive cults, before they reach the
crucial 150members, and perhaps even at the beginning of recruitment, their form of organisation
will change. Initially a circle with the leader at the centre, it will change into a pyramid-like
structure, with the leader at the top and a quantitative distance and sharp boundaries between
different layers. This separation of members within cults is always explained in ideological terms,
while the truth of the matter is that ‘rank’ and separating members into different organisational
circles is not a sign of anything but the degree of loyalty and obedience of each member towards the
cult leader, plus how effective and beneficial he or she is in the daily running of the cult. Therefore
the combination of loyalty, obedience and usefulness of a person, determines in which
organisational layer a person should belong within this pyramid structure.
Although the distances between different level are quantitative, which means through hard work
and a show of loyalty towards the leader, members can move toward the upper layer, they must
also show some sort of qualitative change in themselves to be worthy of this move. Still the distance
between the layer closest to the leader and the leader themselves is purely qualitative and cannot
be crossed by any member of a lower layer unless through nomination by the leader (for example to
be appointed as co-leader or successor of the leader) or through some sort of coup in the absence of
the leader.
This structure is also totalistic which can be defined as: ‘a socio-cultural system that places high
valuation on total control over all aspects of the outer and inner lives of participants for the purpose
of achieving the goals of an ideology defined as all important.’iii
The totalistic nature of destructive
cults implies that there cannot be any kind of democracy or liberty within them, as it has been
pointed out by Margaret Singer in ‘Cults in our Midst’: ‘Without the citizenry being aware of the
power and control certain cults are wielding, democracy and freedom can be curbed one step at a
time. Cults by their very structure and nature are not democratic, do not promote freedom of speech
and freedom of expression, and are the antithesis of structures in which full human growth can
The rise and fall of each member from one layer to another, is decided by their superior and usually
by the leader himself. Therefore members in a lower layer have no say in the rise of a person in a
higher level than themselves. Members of each layer are only answerable to their superior in a
higher level and although sometimes (due to decision and encouragement of the leader for the
special purpose such as breaking specialties and affection between members and especially between
members belonging to different layers) they might be able to criticise their superior, usually criticism
is limited to members of their rank and lower ones. Therefore there is no check and balance for the
leader within cults.
Characteristics of a cult’s organisation:
Page 2 of 14
Totalistic organisations within destructive cults have all the common characteristics mentioned
below. They force members to change their habits, their relationships with the outside world, and
eventually their relationships with their immediate family and friends and even with themselves.
These common factors are:
1- The totalistic nature of the pyramid structure of the group and absolutism of the
2- Independence from the wider society; change of the group into an independent
country or even a small world within the wider society.
3- Secrecy, surveillance, phobia and paranoia toward the outside world.
4- No personal relationships within the organisation (no private circle or gathering or
even personal and private meetings within the organisation).
5- Closed exit doors. Membership for life. Defectors are traitors worthy of death.
Before explaining the above characteristics in detail, I have to describe MeK’s form of organisation,
as I am using MeK as an example to show these characteristics in action. I feel that MEK is more
complex than any other cults that I have read about, and also their form of organisation is important
as many Marxist cults claim that they have the same form of organisation, namely Democratic
Centralism. Also I would like to show that this form of organisation eventually paves the way for any
group (even if they are not a cult at the beginning) to be a dictatorship and cultic form of
When it formed, MEK claimed that its form of organisation was based on ‘scientific experience of
Marxist revolutionary groups’, namely ‘Democratic Centralism’. Since the absolute leadership of
Rajavi no element of democracy has been left within their organisation, however one can still
describe their organisation as based on their definition of Democratic Centralism, described below.
Democratic Centralism:
Democratic Centralism is the kind of organisation mostly associated with Marxist-Leninist ideologies,
including many Trotskyist organisations, as it has been explained by Dr. Dennis Tourish in his article,
‘Ideological intransigence, democratic centralism and cultism: a case study from the political left’.
This type of organisation, which has at its heart an axiom of ‘Vanguard’ as later can be seen, has all
the components needed for a change of a semi-democratic organisation into a totalist or dictatorial
one and in many cases altering it into a destructive cult. Tourish notes:
‘A central tenet of Trotskyist politics is its insistence that a ‘vanguard party’ is required to guide the
working class to powerv
. This is conceived as an organization of professional revolutionaries, steeped
in Marxist ideology, tightly organised and determined to win the leadership of the working class. The
idea was most forcefully advanced by Lenin at the turn of the centuryvi, and justified by reference to
the particular needs of a revolutionary movement operating under an autocratic regimevii. As
Millibandviii has pointed out, this was a departure (Leninists would describe it as an extension) from
the original ideas of Marx, who was much more inclined to argue that the task of liberating the
working class was the task of the working class itself. Ironically, Trotsky himself initially resisted
Lenin’s viewsix. He argued that a vanguard party would inevitably seek to substitute its own activity
and insights for the activity of the working class. Within the party, meanwhile: “…the party
organization (the caucus) at first substitutes itself for the party as a whole; then the Central
Committee substitutes itself for the organization; and finally a single ‘dictator’ substitutes himself for
the Central Committee.” However, during 1917 he finally accepted the Bolshevik model of
organization, and defended it with increasing insistence until his assassination in 1940x
. In the last
year of his life he wrote that “…in order to realise the revolutionary goal a firmly welded centralised
party is indispensable”xi. From the perspective of this discussion a number of important consequences
Page 3 of 14
follow. Firstly, the notion of a vanguard party inherently predisposes its adherents to view themselves
as the pivot on which world history is destined to turn. Revolution is seen as the only route by which
humanity can avoid annihilation, but revolution is only possible if a mass party is built around a
group of ‘cadres’: that is, devotees of the party with a particularly deep insight into its ideology. Thus,
Trotskyists are possessed of a tremendous sense of urgency and a powerful conviction of their
group’s unique role in bringing about the transformation of the world: what could be described as
delusions of historical grandeurxii.’
MeK example of Democratic Centralism;
Although MEK’s ideology was a mixture of Islam and Marxism, they still considered themselves
among left organisations and were even claiming that they were ‘left’ of all Marxist organisations. As
they accepted part of Marxist-Leninist ideology as scientific, they accepted the democratic
centralism as the ‘scientific’ shape of the organisation for their ideology. In a little book titled
‘Barressi Amkan Enheraf Markaziat democratic va tafavoot shake elmii va gheer elmii dar amr a
taskilat’ (Examination of possibilities of deviation of democratic centralism or the difference
between scientific doubt and unscientific doubt within the organisation) MeK drew the shape of
their organisation and claimed that shape was the way the organisation was run until at least 1985
when they completed their transformation into a cult and forgot all about their ‘scientific’ shape of
the organisation.
Although in 1985 officially and openly, MeK announced the Rajavis as ‘ideological leaders of the
organisation, not answerable to anybody but God’xiii (as it was described by Abrishamchii in his
speech entitled ‘Ideological Revolution’) their form of organisation, apart from the ‘democracy’
part, was still closest to anything but their original form described in the above mentioned book.
In this part I would like to show how and why democratic centralism and a belief in vanguard can
facilitate the transformation of any organisation into a cult. In other words I want to argue that this
system of the organisation is not stable and that in the heart of it is a kind of contradiction between
‘democracy’ and ‘centralism’ which eventually will end with ‘democracy’ vanishing, leaving just its
name in the title and the organisation changing into some sort of dictatorship. In the above
mentioned little book of MeK, which was a very important one, MeK outlined 7 axioms or principles
of their organisation based on democratic centralism, as below. I have to remind you, although
many cults have perhaps not theorised their kind of organisation as MeK has done, if you look at
them closely you can see the majority of these so called axioms observed in their organisations in
one shape or another.
1- Oneness or unity between a person and his responsibility:
This is the first principle of MEK’s organisation. It means that there must be a correct
relationship between the merit, qualification and competence of a person and his
responsibilityxiv. The book then explains that within MEK’s ideology a ‘responsibility’ is not a
military rank, or a degree to be proud of, ‘but precisely according to our definition of a
human being (I.e. Man is defined as a responsible creature), it is a symbol and part of being
a human.’{Page 20} Whoever reads these lines would think that what they mean by merit
and competence or in Persian ‘Salahiat’, is the expertise of a person in a certain field of job.
However in ideological systems what is more important than anything else is ideological
merit rather than expertise, but in reality what works is the opposite, that is the expertise
works not the ideological merit. This contradiction within ‘totalist’ and ‘ideological’
organisations will eventually be solved to the benefit of the Ideology rather than expertise.
Page 4 of 14
MeK leaders were always insisting that what they meant by merit was an ideological one
and not expertise. And when they completed their transformation into a cult, the yardstick
for measuring the ideological merit of a person, changed into ‘oneness with the leader’ or
loyalty, love, obedience and self-surrounding of a person to the leader. Therefore suddenly
ranks of all members and their responsibilities changed in a matter of days accordingly.
Abrishamchii in ‘Importance of Ideology’ explains: ‘A rebel is a person who is rebelling
against existing order without knowing what he wants instead; while a revolutionary is a
person who knows what he wants and knows the direction that the revolution should take. …
A revolution without ideology never will succeed; without ideology there is no {united} will
that we can lean on to succeed.’xv In ’Importance of Ideology’ Rajavi also explains: ‘without a
revolutionary ideology, we cannot have a revolutionary movement. I have to repeat; without
a revolutionary ideology, we cannot have a revolutionary movement; without a revolutionary
ideology, we cannot have a revolutionary organisation; and without revolutionary ideology
we cannot make a revolutionary person.’xvi In 1983 Rajavi was talking with MSS (Muslim
student societies; supporters of MeK) representatives and told them that the only measure
for membership of MeK and ranks within the organisation is the ideological merit of a
. Later Abrishamchii and Maryam Rajavi both made it clear what ideology means
and that whatever Rajavi does and says is the ideology of MeKxviii
. Therefore rank and
responsibility within MeK means how far a person has surrendered themselves to Rajavi’s
words and actions. (This is the same yardstick used in all destructive cuts. Closeness of one
to the leader determines their place within the organisation.)
Having an ideology, a doctrine or a religion cannot by itself change an organisation into a
dictatorial one, but when a person or a group of people take a monopoly of that idea and
claim they know more than anybody else, and that they are right and others are wrong,
then it becomes dangerous. It stops others from interpreting it differently, and criticising,
questioning or challenging the leader’s interpretation, and this is the beginning of an
organisation changing into a dictatorial one or an extreme, destructive cult.
After the MEK’s ‘ideological revolution’ Abrishamchii first lieutenant of Rajavi explains: ‘yes
there is only one God; and this is the first and most important principle of our ideology, but in
the daily life of each person, what is important is to know what is the effect of believing in
one God. Let me be brief; when a person recognises the leader of the revolution and places
him in his position, and when he realizes that there is no need he or she involves himself or
herself in the contradictions that should be resolved by the leadership, then his or her
entrance into discussing ideological matters will stabilise and he involves himself in the
matters matched by his or her merit and not more. Such a person never puts himself or
herself in understanding the ideology above the leader. Instead in understanding the
ideology, he or she will get assistance from the leader. Why? Because if a person thinks he or
she can examine and judge the ideological view point of the leader; then perhaps he or she
has seen himself or herself in the position of the leader and perhaps we have to follow him
instead. Therefore a person’s mind should get help and follow the leader on the issues of
ideology and as a result, he or she has more time and opportunity to face his or her
responsibility according to his or her merit.’xix One can understand the significance of these
words when they understand the significance of ‘ideology’ within organisations or cults that
claim to be vanguard of some kind of ideology. As almost all of them eventually claim that
whatever they do and decide, is according to their ideology or in other words their actions,
words or orders are ‘ideological decisions’ and therefore the leader should have final and in
most cases ‘the only’ say on all matters. Again Abrishamchii in the same speech about
Ideological revolution within MeK explains: ‘Ideological issue is issue of existence of a
Page 5 of 14
revolutionary organisation. It is the issue of to be or not to be. If for those who believe in
God, issue of God is everything and it is issue of existence; for a revolutionary organisation
issue of ideology is everything and is issue of existence.’xx
When one cannot question a leader or as MeK calls them, an ‘ideological leader’, the
immediate result is that there is no ‘Check and Balance’ for the leadership. He or she is not
conditioned or answerable to those below, and above them there is not a physical body but
‘spiritual entities’ such as ‘God’, ‘Country,’ or ‘Humanity’; … Again Abrishamchii explains: ‘As
it was mentioned in the political bureau communiqué, all those below the ideological leader
are conditioned to their immediate masoul (superior or person in charge). But Masoud
Rajavi, at the top of the organisation, is conditioned to whom or answerable to whom?
Nobody; only to ‘Revolution’; Ideologically he has no superior but God. Everybody in the
organisation has a superior and is conditioned to their superior but at the top of the
organisation, this is not the case. Maryam as co-leader has no superior but God, as well as
Masoud Rajavi. As people in charge, these two have to sort out their problems, leaning on
their thought and ideology.’xxi As one can see with this principle in place, the leader can play
God; whoever asks a question or shows doubt, is challenging not only the leader but the
ideology and eventually the ‘revolution’, ‘God’, ‘people’ and whoever else that the leader
talks on behalf of. Think, talk and act according to your merit and ability; when the merit and
ability of a person is measured and determined by the leadership, who claims he or she is
the most ideological person within the organisation or even the world, it means that
everybody else has to be silent and obey without any question. Not following this principle,
means you are traitor to the ‘revolution’, ‘people’, ‘country’, ‘humanity’, and ‘God’ and
perhaps worthy of ‘death’.
2- Democratic Centralism; in this axiom or principle they outlined the difference between this
system of organisation and a totalitarian one. And the difference with a liberal organisation.
In the book it has been explained: ‘decision making within a revolutionary organisation is
opposite to reactionary systems; which usually the leader decides on his own and orders and
there is no relationship between his merit and his position. In a revolutionary organisation,
most able {according to their ideological merit} members are in the sensitive position of the
leadership. Existence of the term of ‘democracy’ within this system is the sign of the role and
part that ordinary members play in the totality of the direction which the organisation takes.
It implies that from one hand members have an organic relationship (through organisational
relationships) with the leadership and central committee, therefore eventually will be shared
in the important decision making of the organisation, (which in first place passes through
members with enough merit and eventually everybody who can have a view on that
decision); and on the other hand they inform the leadership from what is going on in the
society.’ (P: 23)
There is an obvious contradiction even in the name of this type of the organisation; the
contradiction between centralism and democracy. Centralism has a habit of making and
dictating decisions but democracy is the sign of all members sharing in decision making,
including choosing the leader of the group. This contradiction, as we saw above, was rightly
predicted by Trotsky. He predicted that eventually centralism would succeed and the
organisation would change into a totalist or a dictatorial one. The key to this transformation
is that the element of democracy is conditioned to the element of centralism and not vice
versa. It means (according to the first principle), that the merit of a person is more important
than their vote as an ordinary member, therefore positioning people in different ranks is by
Page 6 of 14
nomination from top to bottom and not vice versa. Secondly deciding who and how much
one should share in decision making or even who can express their opinion and knowledge,
is up to the leaders, and not decided through democratic procedures. Therefore democracy
within this type of the organisation eventually will lose all its meaning and will change into a
show of hands simply for propaganda purposes. And if the leadership doesn’t change into a
‘one-man show’, eventually it will change into some sort of oligarchy or ‘gentlemen’s club’
of old members who perhaps came first or through different means could take power as it
happened in Soviet Union and many Marxist organisations
Dr. Dennis Tourish, in the above mentioned paper, has explained the transformation of CWI (a
Trotskyist organisation) into a cult. The same thing happened for DWP and is explained by Siegel et
al. in: ‘Leninism as cult: the Democratic Workers Party, Socialist Review’
. Alexandra Stein in her
book titled ‘Inside Outxxiv’ tells us almost the same story, of a Marxist organisation that changed into
a cult. Carol Giambalvo an ex-member of WDU as we saw in pervious articles has given us her story
about WDU, another ‘Marxist organisation’ that changed into a cult.
Even Democratic Centralism, as it was defined within Marxist organisations, with all its
shortcomings never took shape within MeK. Professor Abrahamian explains: ‘The Mujahidin
stressed the importance of obedience, discipline, and hierarchy; not of free expression, open
discussion, and internal elections. Although the Mujahidin liked to use the term ‘democratic
centralism’, it did not seem to realize that Lenin, who coined the term, had tried to design a
party structure that would have internal democracy as well as central authority. For Lenin
and Bolsheviks, democratic centralism had meant not only discipline and commitment, but
also regular confessions, open debates, and genuine elections. But for the Mujahidin, the
same term meant simply obedience to the central leader who in some mysterious way would
embody the members general will. Of course, the catch-22 of this formula was that to be a
proper member you had first to accept the undisputed authority of the leader. In short, the
Mujahidin had metamorphosed from a mass movement into an inward looking sect in many
ways similar to religious cults found the world over.’xxv
Within MeK though, from the beginning they claimed to have some sort of democratic
structures, however as long as Hanif Nejad was alive he had the final say in all crucial
matters and after 1975, when the organisation came out of Marxist split (or as MeK calls it
the ‘Opportunistic coup’), Masoud Rajavi became sole leader, brain and will of the
Between 1975 and 1985, although many of the old members claim ‘Masoud Rajavi’ was the
mind, soul and mastermind of the organisation, for recruitment and propaganda purposes
they still used to claim that the organisation was run by a group of people, members of
‘political bureau,’ who were elected by the ‘Central committee’.
As a supporter then I was of the impression that people like Mussa Khiabani or Ali Zarkesh
and Abrishamchii … were on an almost equal level to Rajavi and that they, along with other
members of the ‘political bureau,’ which was an elected entity, made crucial decisions of the
organisation. Then, after 1981, gradually through the words of people like Khiabani,
Abrishamchii and many other old members of the ‘political bureau’, we supporters and
perhaps lower ranking members faced the reality that for all these years the organisation
has been one man show. Abrishamchii in the same speech points out that even simple
communiqués of the organisation for distributions had to be approved and even written by
Rajavi himself. He says: ‘{Between 1979 and 1981, when the organisation was a popular and
Page 7 of 14
open one} every day’s morning Militias {Young activists of the organisation, mostly school
students, who used to sell and distribute MEK’s communiqué and publications.} had to
distribute {organisation’s} publications and communiqués . Word by words of these
publications had to be precise, and in most cases, Masoud had to teach us and do everything
himself. Sometimes I could cry to see him in that situation, as he recently was freed from the
prison and was not well, he had to sit on a chair and say a sentence every five minutes.’xxvi
In 1979 to prepare ‘supporters’ to accept Rajavi as absolute or ‘ideological’ leader they
named him as the spokesperson of the organisation, then in 1981, they introduced him as
the ‘Masoul aval’ or first person in charge. And eventually in 1985 they named him as the
‘ideological leader’ and they left all their shy away calling him equal to ‘sun’, ‘Iran’, ‘people’,
… Abrishamchii in the same speech points out: ‘Yes we don’t have matchstick equality. When
we claim Masoud and Maryam are having the highest ideological merits, it doesn’t mean
that Ali Zarkesh (Then the second in command) is less a person. It doesn’t reduce the value of
political bureau. On the contrary, it gives them more weight. I will ask those who give rubbish
slogans about democratic relations, why shouldn’t I know who has highest Ideological merit
within the organisation?’xxvii Then he explains who Masoud is: ‘Who Masoud is? He is the one
who wrote the ideological road map of the organisation. His thought brightened our
direction. His thought is demonstration or illustration of our ideology. … from the next day of
martyrdom of Hanif-Nejad, ideological flag of the organisation has been in the hand of
Masoud.’xxviii As no one can question or challenge the leader, the organisation cannot have
‘opposition’, ‘defectors’, or ‘factions’ but only ‘traitors’. Abrishamchii explains this: ‘With
solving the problem of Ideological leader we have put a stop on all influences of foreign
forces and agents. Therefore no one can faction the organisation and capitalize on factions
within the organisation.’xxix
Conditions for democracy:
Apart from the already mentioned problem, ‘revolutionary organisations’, ‘Marxist-Leninist
groups’ and ‘cults’ have a fundamental problem in establishing any kind of democracy within
their organisations. Democracy within any society or group can be born, remain, grow and
flourish within fertile ground, otherwise even if it has been given to that society or group
through some sort of magic or forced by an external force, it cannot survive and flourish,
and sooner or later will die out and will change into some sort of oligarchy of elites and
eventually into a more complex form of dictatorship. Fertile ground for the survival, growth
and flourishing of a democracy needs the majority of people or in the case of groups, the
majority of members to have at least four qualities:
 They should have a certain level of education, understanding and knowledge; in the
case of a society the majority of people must be literate, and in the case of groups
people’s political and ideological understanding must be sufficient enough to
minimise the distance between the knowledge of the elite of the organisation and
ordinary members. In the most totalitarian systems, tyrants try very hard to control
the flow of information to keep the level of knowledge of the majority of people to a
bare minimum. When illiteracy is at its highest and the existence and availability of
information is at its lowest, a dictatorship can take control easily. Within cults,
revolutionary and Marxist organisations, usually the flow of information from
outside is limited and sooner or later the understanding of the doctrine of the cult
becomes monopolised by the elite of the organisation.
Page 8 of 14
 They should have a certain level of wealth in the case of a society, and some sort of
self sufficiency or financial security and independence in the case of membership of
a group. The overall majority of people must be well above the bread line, be able to
think, to learn, to recognize their rights and to want more and struggle for more, and
in the case of groups, they should not be dependent on leaders for their essentials
and they should have enough free time to be able to think and have a view about
the running of the group. In third world countries like Africa and many Asian
countries, poverty is the main enemy of democracy, as the majority of people have
to spend all their time ensuring they are able to feed themselves and their family,
therefore there is no more time to educate themselves and to think. In oil rich
countries, or countries where the economy is based on a single or limited number of
commodities, they face a different problem. Although most people might be well
above the breadline, and in many smaller countries the majority can even be called
‘rich’, people are still dependent on oil money (or that single commodity) and that
money is in the hands of the rulers who distribute it among people as they want;
therefore governments can dictate their wishes accordingly. In those countries, the
army and even the parliament if it exists, are not dependent on people and their
votes, but the money which is in the hand of the government; therefore sooner or
later they will change into tools of government rather than tools of democracy.
Within organisations and cults, leaders will first strip members of any kind of
financial self-sufficiency, they will force them to surrender their wealth to the group
and leave any kind of job that they might have. Secondly they will produce enough
work for all ordinary members so they have no time for anything else except the
minimum time for the essentials of survival. Within MeK there was a saying that a
Mojahed should work so hard that when he closes his eyes he will go immediately
into a death-like sleep. Later we will see that hard work in all totalitarian
organisations is an essential ingredient to stop the gaining of knowledge and
information by members, except what is given to them by the leader; it also stops
the rise of any question, criticism or challenge from below.
 They should have certain levels of Individuality, self-confidence and self- esteem,
to realise their rights and fight for the materialization of those rights. Lack of or
weakness of individuality is one of the obstacles in front of democracy. One of the
reasons why we rarely witness any democratic revolution within Eastern cultures is a
lack of or weakness of individuality. As a matter of fact in many eastern languages
there is no word for positive individuality; the words that exist within these cultures
meaning ‘individuality,’ most often have a negative suffix or prefix meaning, such as:
egoism, selfishness, or arrogance. In cults; members are invited to seek freedom and
liberty in ‘not wanting’ and ‘not desiring’. Respect for collective self, instead of
individuality is educated through literature, poems and popular idioms. Within
revolutionary and Marxist organisations and cults the first lesson is sacrifice of self
for the progress of aims and objectives of the group and materialization of the
doctrine. Therefore any kind of individuality and demand for self rights, under the
banner of ‘selfishness’, is vehemently suppressed. With loss of individuality or its
weakness, people/members cannot realise their right for electing and monitoring
actions of the government or leaders.
 There should be a real choice and alternative fundamentally different from the
ruling party or group in power. In the society, either the governing elite don’t let any
alternative take shape, or if it does, they try to create their own alternative and
Page 9 of 14
through laws, media, and financial means, they stop the message of real alternatives
reaching the ordinary people. In most Western democracies this is the way that the
elite of society stop the democracy working as it should. They either stop the real
alternative taking shape or through monopolization of the media or use of other
means, they stop people from recognising the real alternative and force them to
choose between parties that are almost the same, (protector of the elite of the
society) or at most to choose between ‘bad and worse’. As a result as we can see in
almost all Western democracies, the majority of people, as they don’t see any real
difference between existing alternatives, are passive in elections and at most forty
per cent of them bother to vote. In organisations, and cults, as we saw above,
leaders have a monopoly of ideological merit and will not let any alternative or
faction take shape. In certain situations the leadership becomes weaker than being
able to stop any alternative taking shape; usually the existence of any alternative will
result in splits of the group into two and more.
3- Criticism and self-criticism; in the book it has been explained: ‘as any revolutionary
organisation is part of a wider society, in active daily relation with the society and different
classes of the people, therefore social differences and contradictions that exist in the society
will show themselves within the organisation. As long as class and exploitation systems exist
in the society, existence of contradiction and duality within the organization is unavoidable.
… Therefore the ideological struggle within the organisation, parallel to our social struggle is
necessary and unavoidable. This struggle will take shape through a principle of ‘Criticism and
self-Criticism’. Criticisms are either organisational or personal (PP: 27,28).’ Then we read
about conditions for criticism, which make it almost impossible for lower ranks to freely
criticise the higher ones; on page 30 it is written: ‘It is obvious that first condition for
criticism and self criticism is to have the Ideological merit {necessary for judging or criticising}
and enough awareness towards the issues of criticism. Therefore to avoid formalistic and
mechanical kind of criticism (which are not productive and are forced upon people and could
not last), critics need to have appropriate qualities. … Qualities that can be obtained through
ideological work within the organisation.’ As one can see again criticism is conditioned to the
ideological merit of a person who wants to criticise. And who has these merits or is the judge
of existence of such ideological merits? Of course the leadership, who are there because of
their ideological merits, and if someone else think they have such merits, they should be the
leader or in the leadership council, but they are not!
Lenin has explained this principle as: ‘The principle of democratic centralism and autonomy
for local party organizations implies universal and full freedom to criticise, so long as this
does not disturb the unity of a defined action; it rules out all criticism which disrupts or
makes difficult unity of action decided upon by the party’xxx
. Again Dr. Dennis Tourish in his
paper xxxiargues: ‘Given what is now known of social influence this approach is almost
certainly destined to prevent genuine internal discussion. Firstly, it is not at all clear when
‘full freedom to criticise’ can actually be said to disturb the unity of a defined action. The
norms of democratic centralism confer all power between conferences onto a central
committee, allowing it to become the arbiter of when a dissident viewpoint is in danger of
creating such a disturbance, normally presumed to be lethal. The evidence suggests that they
are strongly minded to view any dissent as precisely such a disruption, and respond by
demanding that the dissident ceases their action on pain of expulsion from the party.’ Apart
from condition of merit mentioned in MEK’s book and what was mentioned above by Dr.
Tourish by claiming that they have a strong enemy waiting to crush them, the leadership of
such groups can enforce the policy of absolute secrecy within the group. Therefore they can
Page 10 of 14
monopolise the information (or at least essential information), and they can stop ordinary
members from criticising, questioning or suggesting any new ideas, under the banner that
they don’t have all essential information to say what they want to say.
As we saw the main reason for existence of this principle within MeK was because of the
existence of contradictions that exist within society based on class and exploitation.
Abrishamchii explains: ‘obviously, whoever becomes a supporter or member of the
organisation, his or her self-confidences based on his or her class-individuality will be
criticised. Because he or she has been a successful manager of a factory, a brilliant student of
a school or a university, a successful athlete or an artist, none of these are a reason for him
or her to have self-confidence within MeK. He or she cannot rely on these merits or
achievements, however positive and beneficial they might be. Because all of them are based
on individual abilities. When he or she joins {the organisation}, collective self must replace his
or her individuality and he or she must find new self-confidence through collective work. Up
to that day {joining the organisation} we could appreciate ourselves, we could look at a
mirror and enjoy seeing ourselves, thinking how important we are. But now {after joining}
the mirror will change into criticism’s meetings. We are as good as according to the
ideological measures. In these meetings they will appreciate or criticise members according
to these measures and how much readiness one shows in changing himself or herself.’xxxii

In the same speech, to show why ordinary members cannot criticise the leader Abrishamchii
explains: ‘Now when someone accepts to be judged {by the organisation}, he will ask himself
or herself, “what have I done for the people and the revolution?” “Why should I question
Masoud {Rajavi}?” … After all, the one who wants to judge Masoud {Rajavi}, don’t dare to
compromise with himself. He or she will start asking questions of himself, “who am I to
criticise Masoud?”, “what have I done for the revolution?” “What have I sacrificed for the
people?”… Through this self criticism, one will see all his or her short comings. Have you
heard the story of Jesus? They say when people wanted to stone a criminal, he told people,
let us think, whoever thinks he is not criminal of this fault, should throw the first stone. All
threw their stones away and left the scene. … When we start struggling with ourselves,
though we have been ready to sacrifice everything, we were prepared to become martyr, and
suffer torture; still we cannot Judge Masoud and Maryam {Rajavi}; Why? Because we know
whatever we have done or have been prepared to do, they have done more than that and in
a higher level, and they have sacrificed great things difficult for us to understand or
imagine.’xxxiii As one can see not only conditions such as ‘ideological merit’, ‘knowledge and
information’ which are monopolised by higher ranking members or the leader himself will
put a stop to criticism of above by below. Abrishamchii introduces a new condition as well;
‘sacrifice.’ Who in MeK or any cult dares to claim that he or she has sacrificed more than the
leader or even more than his or her superior? With this kind of argument not only is it the
case that one doesn’t dare to question, doubt or criticise the leader of the organisation, but
with the same kind of argument, one cannot question or criticise their superior. Unless it is
the desire of the leader to get rid of a rival, as, for example we once had a session in which
we were encouraged to criticise and even humiliate a high ranking lieutenant because Rajavi
wanted it so. Similarly there were many lower ranking members who were critical of high
official members of China’s communist party during the ‘cultural revolution’ of Mao, when
Mao wanted to get rid of rivalry or punish some high officials.
4- Ironic Discipline: this principle has been explained as: ‘Ironic Discipline is the sign of the
highest knowledge and ‘Hal-shoodagi’ (melting of a member in the organisational principles)
of a member. If one accepts Ideology and strategy and … principles of an organisation, then
Page 11 of 14
he or she should accept the shape of that organisation as well. Undisciplined action by a
person is a sign of giving a priority to personal interest over the organisational interest.
While Ironic discipline is a sign of deep melting of a person’s personality within the
organisation and it is sign of his total understanding of the organisation’s ideology. ‘
I think the magic of these words is in just one word; in Persian ‘Hal-shoodagi’ melting.. It can
be defined as understanding, coordinating, accepting, or believing, but the real meaning is
what melting means. Melting as when salt and sugar lose their identity, their white colour,
their solidness, and their independence and when they cannot be separated from water
easily. In an organisation it means total loyalty and obedience from deep inside your mind
and heart. Although political groups organised within a democratic centralism system still
have to go some distance to change into a cult, one can see that when all elements of mind
control are in place, what is needed is a charismatic leader to use all these elements and
complete the transformation of the group into a cultxxxv
. Equalling Ironic discipline or more
bluntly ‘total obedience’ with total understanding of ideological and organisational
principles, means that whoever who doesn’t obey an order can be accused of having less
ideological merit and understanding. They would not be considered worthy of their rank and
therefore the leaders would have the best excuse for getting rid of noisy and questioning
members. As a result those who ask less and obey more, have a weak personality, who
accept anything without question and doubt, who easily surrender themselves and their
personality, who flatter more, and eventually those who worship the leader can claim they
have the highest degree of ideological virtue and are worthy of the highest rank and position
within the organisation.
5- Collective leadership: This principle has been explained as: ‘complexity of the society and
deep contradiction that exits in the society, especially qualitative difference between
revolutionary organisation and the society (due to its complex problems and contradictions)
force a revolutionary organisation to have ‘Collective leadership’. This is more necessary
when we realise that the organisation wants to change deeply the foundations of the society,
therefore due to this situation, one person is never able to face all these problems’ (P: 32) So
far so good, but as we saw in the case of MeK and before MeK in many other Marxist
organisation and countries such as Soviet Union or China, a charismatic and strong person
with a little bit of ‘more ideological’ knowledge or ‘scientific’ or ‘revolutionary’ background,
and in a vacuum of rivalry, can easily change the collective leadership using titles such as
political bureau or central committee in a sham and superficial council and gradually (or as
we saw in the case of MeK suddenly) change it into a one man show. This is mainly because
apart from this principle, all other principles of democratic centralism are aiming the
organisation toward having an absolute and even tyrannical leader.
6- Brotherly Trust; ‘Organisational relations are based on trust between members. Without
brotherly trust, no revolution can be victorious. … Trust within a revolutionary organisation is
the fruit and result of the shared ideology and organisation. And exactly because of this
reason, it is a rational and knowledgeable trust. It is opposite to naïve and blind trust that
exists in un-revolutionary relations. … This kind of trust is more important, decisive and
necessary for a clandestine revolutionary organisation in the armed struggle where they
cannot organise congress and election and in other words where democratic procedures are
limited.’ (PP: 34,35)
It can be recognised immediately that ‘revolutionary organisations’ that are obviously either
in an armed struggle or have the excuse of having an enemy who wants to destroy them, can
change into a clandestine organisation and enforce certain principles of secrecy. They can
Page 12 of 14
then benefit fully from those principles; they can postpone any kind of democratic
procedures and ask members to trust them, be loyal and obedient with ‘brotherly trust’.
Interestingly this trust in many organisations is one-sided and it is from ordinary members
toward leaders. Leaders always have the excuse of impurity of ideology in lower ranks that
makes them not fully or at all trustworthy and even makes it necessary to lie to them and
deceive them. After all they can claim that ordinary members are from the society and have
brought with them impurity that exists in the society and therefore it is difficult and unwise
to trust them. Later in mind control we will see how this one-sided trust works in silencing
ordinary members and paving the way for total control of their life and mind.
7- Necessity of existence of professional revolutionaries: ‘A revolutionary movement
necessities the existence of professionalism of at least main members of the organisation.
Also we have to notice, what is important in a revolutionary organisation is the ideological
quality and purity of its member and not their number. Within recent history of revolutions,
and more than all, Lenin has emphasised the necessity of existence of a revolutionary
organisation. This emphasis by Lenin more than anything else shows how close his
understanding is to the monotheistic worldview which persists on role of knowledgeable
leadership in the change or move of the history. He realises the victory of a revolution
without a revolutionary organisation is impossible. … Centralism because of centralism and
democracy because of democracy or this way of thinking that an organisational position is
because of prestige of that position are all signs of some sort of formalism which should be
avoided vehemently by the revolutionary organisation. As if not the ideology of the
organisation that everything has to be at its service is going to be the first victim of this way
of behaviour. This is why when a person has not understood well the ideology and has not
matched himself with that ideology, they should not ask for any vote or democratic rights or
expression of his view toward things related to the principles of that ideology.’ (pp:36,37)
Well this principle says it all. Firstly it is somehow a first come first served kind of
organisation as those who come first and become professional, can always claim they
understand the ideology better and according to this principle have certain rights that
ordinary members, especially those who still have family and private jobs and live with their
family, should not have as they are not professional. Furthermore they can claim
‘unprofessional members’ understand the ideology less than they do and therefore should
not ask for any say in this respect. When they claim in a revolutionary organisation that the
ideology is everything, they can easily deny any rights of the ordinary members with the
excuse that everything they do and decide has an ideological reason. Apart from all these, as
later we will see, this principle helped MeK greatly in changing into a destructive cult. As
becoming a professional revolutionary for new members meant leaving their job, study,
financial independence and their normal and ordinary life, becoming totally dependent on
the organisation, and being forced into isolation from wider society. All were necessary for
further stages of Mind control.

i Dunbar, Grooming, ‘Gossip and the Evolution of Language’, p: 76 cited from: Kathleen Taylor; ‘Brainwashing; The
science of Thought control’; Oxford university press; 2004; P: 45
ii Kathleen Taylor; ‘Brainwashing; The science of Thought control’; Oxford university press; 2004; P: 45
iii Benjamin Zablocki & Thomas Robbins; ‘Misunderstanding Cults; Searching for objectivity in a controversial field’;
University of Toronto Press; 2001; P: 183
Page 13 of 14

iv Margaret Thaler Singer; ‘Cults in our Midst’; Jossey-Bass; A Wiley Imprint; 2003; P: XXVIII
v MEK has the same terminology claiming that to reach power Mostazafin need a vanguard party or an organisation to lead
them toward gaining power; as we saw before they claim this organisation is MEK, who will eventually change into
‘Hezbollah’ or party of God. Amuzesh va tashrih-e ettela’iyeh ta’yin-e mavaze’-e Sazeman-e Mojahedin-e Khalq-e Iran dar
barahbar-e jariyan-e oportunistha-ye chppnama -An explanation of the communiqué defining the position of the People’s
Mojahedin Organization of Iran on the matter of pseudo-leftist opportunism- 1980; P: 86
vi Deutscher, I., (1963) The Prophet Outcast, Trotsky 1929-1940, Oxford University Press: Oxford
vii Volkogonov, D., (1994) Lenin: Life and Legacy, Harper Collins: London
viii Milliband, R., (1977) Marxism and Politics, Oxford University Press: Oxford
ix Lenin and Trotsky: ‘A Question of Organisational Form’, In Tickin, H., and Cox, M., (Eds.) The Ideas of Leon Trotsky,
Porcupine Press: London
x Deutscher, I., (1954) The Prophet Armed, Trotsky 1979-1921, Oxford University Press: Oxford
xi Trotsky, L., (1973) In Defence of Marxism, Pathfinder: New York, p.141
xii Dr. Dennis Tourish; ‘Ideological intransigence, democratic centralism and cultism’: a case study from the political left.
xiii Ideological Revolution; speech of Mehdi Abrishamchii; published by MEK; November 1985; PP: 47, 48
xiv MEK’s publication; Barressi Amkan Enheraf Markaziat democratic ya tafavoot shake a almii va gheer almii dar amer a
taskilat; Examination of possibilities of deviation of democratic centralism or the difference between scientific doubt and
unscientific doubt within the organisation; Tehran; 1980; P: 20
xv ‘Ideological Revolution’; speech of Mehdi Abrishamchii; published by MEK; November 1985; P: 88
xvi Masoud Rajavi’s speeches in Tehran, 1979; titled: Tabayan-e jahan (Explaining the world) MEK’s publication;
Ideological Teachings of the organisation of Mojahedin e’ Khalq Iran; December 1979; Number one; P: 23
xvii MEK’s publication; Mojahed number 160; 14/7/1983
xviii For example look at Ideological Revolution; speech of Mehdi Abrishamchii; published by MEK; November 1985; P: 59
xix ‘Ideological Revolution’; speech of Mehdi Abrishamchii; published by MEK; November 1985; P: 113
xx ‘Ideological Revolution’; speech of Mehdi Abrishamchii; published by MEK; November 1985; P: 17
xxi ‘Ideological Revolution’; speech of Mehdi Abrishamchii; published by MEK; November 1985; PP: 47, 48
xxii Dr. Dennis Tourish in his paper titled ‘Ideological intransigence, democratic centralism and cultism: a case study from
the political left’. In his conclusion he explains: ‘…the evidence plainly suggests that a number of traditional Leninist or
Trotskyist assumptions endanger internal democracy, political thinking and what must be a central goal of any movement
seeking wider influence – the regular updating of ideas to retain relevance. In particular, the Trotskyist conception of the role
of the revolutionary party has become transmuted into a rationale for the creation of tyrannical fiefdoms locked into a spiral
of irrelevance, fragmentation and ideological petrifaction. Rigid adherence to ‘democratic centralism’, a term which appears
to be an oxymoron, reflects an excessive veneration for ‘October’, which in turn precludes an updated historical analysis of
the 1917 Revolution and its aftermath. Accordingly, the Trotskyist tradition eschews innovation. Those marooned in its
static preoccupations find themselves condemned to an ever greater isolation, in which the search for other footprints in the
sand is always in vain. This is combined with a catastrophist political analysis which (despite its frequent falsification by
events) acts a spur to such intense activism that the energy, time and confidence required for political reflection is consumed
by party building. Such ‘party building’ is generally signified by the presence of innumerable factions – and the absence of a
xxiii Siegel, P., Strohl, N., Ingram, L., Roche, D., and Taylor, J., (1987) ‘Leninism as cult: the Democratic Workers Party’,
Socialist Review, 17, 59-85
Page 14 of 14

xxiv Alexandra Stein ;‘Inside Out; a memoir of Entering and breaking out of a Minneapolis Political Cult’; Published by
North Star Press of St. Cloud, Inc. 2002
xxv Ervand Abrahamian; ‘The Iranian Mojahedin'; Yale University Press; 1989; PP: 250, 251
xxvi ‘Ideological Revolution’; speech of Mehdi Abrishamchii; published by MEK; November 1985; P: 34
xxvii ‘Ideological Revolution’; speech of Mehdi Abrishamchii; published by MEK; November 1985; PP: 60, 61
xxviii ‘Ideological Revolution’; speech of Mehdi Abrishamchii; published by MEK; November 1985; PP: 62,63
xxix ‘Ideological Revolution’; speech of Mehdi Abrishamchii; published by MEK; November 1985; P: 65
xxx Lenin, V.I., (1977) Collected Works, Vol 5, Progress Publishers: Moscow, p.433
xxxi ‘Ideological intransigence, democratic centralism and cultism’: a case study from the political left
xxxii ‘Ideological Revolution’; speech of Mehdi Abrishamchii; published by MEK; November 1985; P: 116
xxxiii ‘Ideological Revolution’; speech of Mehdi Abrishamchii; published by MEK; November 1985; PP: 116, 120
xxxiv MEK’s publication; Barressi Amkan Enheraf Markaziat democratic ya tafavoot shake a almii va gheer almii dar amer a
taskilat; Examination of possibilities of deviation of democratic centralism or the difference between scientific doubt and
unscientific doubt within the organisation; Tehran; 1980; P: 31
xxxv As I believe that MEK had the most essential elements of a destructive cult from day one; the only reason why it didn’t
complete the transformation until later, was perhaps due to the personality of Hanif Nejad who was the first leader of the
organisation, and later due to the imprisonment of Rajavi. This meant a limitation on his authority; and then after the
revolution, due to the change of the organisation into a popular one, that forced it out of isolation,(isolation, at least
psychological isolation is a necessary element for having a cult).

Leave a Reply