Prince Reza Pahlavi Offers ‘New Contract’ For Iran
Prince Reza Pahlavi, the heir to the Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi deposed by the 1979 Revolution, has put forward the idea of a ‘New Contract’ for a governing system in which “political power is not monopolized by an individual or a group and everyone is equally responsible to make key decisions.”
In a video message aired by Iran International, he added that every day of continued rule by the Islamic Republic will lead to a future even gloomier than today.
The message was tailored to appeal to those people in Iran who want to have social and political freedoms and see a better future ahead.
Introducing his idea of "A New Contract," Prince Reza, 59 who is regarded by supporters as heir to the throne said his motivation is not to take political power but create "a system in which political power is not monopolized by an individual or a group and everyone is equally responsible to make key decisions."
He stressed that a future government should be based on collective wisdom, public participation and citizens' responsibility." He said he is looking for the right route to welfare and progress, and not a system that would recreate despotism and monopoly on power." Prince Reza said that the first step toward this end is transition from the Islamic Republic in which a few people now hold all the wealth and political power.
"Not only we know what we do not want, but we also clearly know what we want: a sustainable political structure based on the will of the people, in which political power is at the service of the people and their national interests," he said.
Prince Reza stressed the only alternative for the future of Iran is the rule of the people and the laws they make. He added that the people need to make a choice between the Islamic Republic and Iran.
Prince Reza called on democratic political forces regardless of their background to set aside their differences and focus on one objective: Saving Iran.
With the current economic crisis making people poorer by the day and a large, inefficient bureaucracy unable to deal with multiple social problems, the Prince’s aim in the speech was to draw a stark contrast.
He also called on the Iranian armed forces to defend and support the nation against a suppressive regime that is “selling out” the country's waters and soil and resources. He also reminded the IRGC and Basij militia that their commanders have been plundering the country and gathering wealth and have taken the country hostage.
Prince Reza Pahlavi said that those taking part in strikes, protests and civil disobedience in various parts of the country need to join each other. He called for forming protest circles at workplaces and promoting civil disobedience.
He also called on the people to support political prisoners and protest leaders in jail and asked Iranians abroad to voice the concerns of those who are active inside the country and create a wide network of those who care for Iran.
He stressed that Iran in the future will respect all ideas and no one will be seen as a second-class citizen for their beliefs and the majority will not undermine the minority's rights.
Pointing out that people in any situation outnumber the suppressors, Prince Reza called on the people to take back the streets from the government.
In two major nationwide protests in 2018 and 2019 hundreds of thousands of Iranians took to the streets against injustice, discrimination and economic hardships. Among the slogans chanted during those protests and many smaller demonstrations across Iran during the past three years two were particularly significant.
One slogan "Reformists, Conservatives, this is the end for you!" marked the people's disillusionment and disappointment about the main political factions in the Islamic Republic and signalled a move for the emergence of a new narrative.
The second slogan: "Reza Shah rest in peace, O' Shah of Iran, Come back to Iran," revealed an interest among part of the population for the return of monarchy.
Prince Reza in his latest message pledged allegiance with the nation and for instance called for the restoration Iranians’ right to run a decent life free from poverty and suppression.
He said "the new contract" was a pact among the whole nation in order to bring about development, and economic flourishing and prevent the plundering of national resources and wasting them in other countries, while restoring Iran's grandeur.