Michael Rubin Blasts Washington’s MEK Supporters

Michael Rubin is on the offensive against the campaign to delist the Mojehedeen-e Khalq (MEK/MKO) from the State Department’s list of terrorist organizations. Rubin, a resident scholar at the neoconservative American Enterprise Institute, splits with some of his fellow hawks and denounces the MEK as a group which “has targeted Americans” and warns that “all [Iranians] detest the MKO.”

Rubin writes on Commentary’s Contentions blog:

The enemy of my enemy is not always a friend: Iranian attitudes toward the MKO are analogous to Americans’ views toward American Taliban John Walker Lindh. Iranians despise the MKO for siding with Saddam Hussein as he murdered Iranians. After liberation, the MKO embraced America not because it loves liberty and apple pie but rather because it is an ideological chameleon. Only fools would believe that the MKO is sincere in its pro-American rhetoric. While the MKO claims credit for intelligence coups, more often than not it is either a conduit for other countries to launder their own collections or the MKO simply makes it up.

One thing is certain: embracing the MKO is the surest way to make anti-American the 65 million Iranians who dislike their government and dislike theocracy.

Rubin also attacks some of the MEK’s defenders in Washington, some of whom are housed with him at AEI, for failing to disclose their financial connections to the organization.

If American officials call for the delisting of the MKO, that is their right. For an honest debate on the issues, however, they should acknowledge the honorarium or consulting fees they receive from the group.

See the rest of of Rubin’s post here.

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Eli Clifton

Eli Clifton reports on money in politics and US foreign policy. He is a co-founder of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft. Eli previously reported for the American Independent News Network, ThinkProgress, and Inter Press Service.