Iran

Medea Benjamin’s book on Iran

Screen_Shot_2018-01-22_at_4.13.38_PM.pngCheck out Medea Benjamin’s latest book Inside Iran: The Real History of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Get your copy here!

In 1979, the Iranian Revolution brought a Shia theocracy to the 80 million inhabitants of the Middle East’s second largest country. In the decades since, bitter relations have persisted between the U.S. and Iran. Yet how is it that Iran has become the primary target of American antagonism, when Saudi Arabia, a regime that is even more repressive, remains one of America’s closest allies? In the first general-audience book on the subject, Medea Benjamin elucidates the mystery behind this complex relationship, recounting Iran’s history from the pre-colonial period, through the CIA-engineered coup that overthrew the country’s democratic leadership in 1953, to its emergence as the one nation Democrats and Republicans alike regularly unite in denouncing. Benjamin draws upon her firsthand experiences with Iranian politicians, activists, and everyday citizens to provide a deeper understanding of the complexities of Iranian society and the nation’s role in the region. Tackling the contradictions in Iran’s system of government, its religiosity, and its citizens’ way of life, Inside Iran makes short work of the inflammatory rhetoric surrounding U.S.-Iranian relations, and presents a realistic and hopeful case for the two nations’ future.

Medea is traveling around the US (and the world!) with her book. If you're interested in bringing her to your community, or scheduling a press interview email medea@codepink.org

Past Actions on Iran

2018

The purpose of the Iran Summit was to highlight the Trump administration’s hawkish policies on Iran that could lead us into another war, and examine how to reverse course. We also had a beautiful Iranian art exhibit provided by Aftab Committee, calligraphy, music, photo booth and other cultural activities. Check out an archive of our summit here!

2017

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Visited the UK, France, German, Russian, Chinese, and Iranian embassies to deliver thank you notes for upholding the Iran deal!

2015

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The 2015 Iran Deal was passed thanks to grassroots activism across the country. CODEPINK and others:

2012

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We Love Iranians

Send a message of peace to the Iranian people and upload it onto Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter using our hashtag #peacewithIran. Take a photo of yourself with our peace with Iran poster or make your own. You can also use this sample script to practice a phrase in Persian, or feel free to make up your own message. Don’t worry about pronunciation. Iranians will be delighted by your effort to communicate and spread a message of peace.

The Steps are Simple

You can either:

Take a photo of yourself with our peace with Iran poster or make your own.

OR

Select a message from one of the examples provided that resonates with you. Record yourself saying you stand with the people of Iran and peace.

Make sure to share publicly on social media and use hashtag #peacewithIran


Poster

Print this poster (8.5 x 11 or 17 x 11 inches) to hold while you record your message. You can also make your own poster or record without one.

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Persian Message

Salam 
man (insert your name) hastam
Maa mikhaeem doost basheem
Va baham dar sol zendegi konim
Na tahreem, na jang
Beh omeed-eh didar

English Message

Hello
I’m (insert your name)
We want to be friends 
And together live in peace
No sanctions, no war
Hope to see you soon!

Listen and Learn How to Pronounce Your Persian Message clicking by here!


Be Inspired by These Videos!

See more videos here on our YouTube Channel!


Take More Actions on Social Media!

Find you how you can share more messages on Twitter and Facebook!


Learn More

Iranian citizens are suffering, and it’s about to get worse. Last year, Trump announced the U.S. withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal and the reimposition of sanctions on Iran. This was a deal designed around peace and now people are suffering from the sanctions by this warhawk Trump administration. U.S. sanctions have crippled Iran's economy. Poverty and unemployment rates have increased. Prices in food and medicine have skyrocketed. Recent escalations and threats of war between the U.S. and Iran have created an even more stressful environment for the people in Iran. We want to show the Iranian people that we don’t support sanctions or military intervention. We want to tell the Iranian people that while our governments may fight, we can be friends.

Iran Advocacy Toolkit


Get your city council to pass a Peace with Iran city council or mayoral resolution.

Passing city council resolutions is a great way of showing opposition to a war with Iran from the ground up. The city resolutions, which are addressed to your congressional representatives, helps shore up good legislation on the national level. They are also a good hook for op-eds and other media at the local level. In addition, as we get more and more resolutions passed locally, we will then take the resolution to the US Conference of Mayors that takes place from June 12-15, and hopefully get it passed by a body that represents hundreds of U.S. cities.

Each resolution tends to be worded differently, but that is not a problem as long as the main point of the resolution is calling for peace with Iran.  

Sample city resolution text here!

Watch our webinar for step-by-step instructions on how to get a Peace with Iran resolution passed in your community!

Webinar Resources

Peace with Iran Webinar Town Hall Slideshow

Passing a City Council Resolution for Diplomacy with Iran

Cities that have already passed or introduced Peace with Iran resolutions include: 

  • Cleveland
  • Portland, OR
  • San Francisco
  • Charlottesville, VA

CODEPINK Webinars on Iran

Access our webinars here!


Talking Points When Protesting and Advocating Against War with Iran

1.   Trump’s assassination of Soleimani may lead to war. Trump’s decision to assassinate the leader of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’ Quds force Qasem Soleimani, one of the most powerful leaders in Iran may well plunge the United States, Iran, and the entire region into a catastrophic war. 

2.   The blame for this confrontation lays squarely at Trump’s doorstep. Make no mistake: Donald Trump is responsible for this crisis by his reckless decision to withdraw from the successful 2015 nuclear agreement with Iran known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, and launch a systematic campaign of “maximum pressure,” placing the US and Iran on a collision course.

3.   The attacks are illegal. Both the December 27 attack on the Iraqi militia and the January 2 attack on Soleimani and military leaders were done without congressional authorization and were therefore illegal—violating the War Powers Act, the Constitution and international law. There were also done in defiance of the wishes of the Iraqi government, which has led to calls by the Iraqi national assembly for the withdrawal of US troops from Iraq.

4.   We should not be talking about Iranian aggression, but about US aggression. Trump, after pulling out of the Iran nuclear deal, implemented a brutal policy of “maximum pressure” that included crippling economic sanctions. It is bad enough that Trump prohibited US companies from trading with Iran, but he went much further—telling companies all over the world that they would be punished by the US if they traded with Iran. These economic sanctions, which punish the nation’s entire population of 80 million, are a form of economic warfare.

5.   Who is pushing this confrontation? This confrontational policy towards Iran has been promoted by the neocons and hawks inside and outside the Administration, as well as by U.S. allies Israel and Saudi Arabia. The U.S. government should not be doing the bidding of foreign powers, especially when they go against the best interests of the American people.

6.   Let’s not forget the role of the disastrous 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq. It was the invasion that led to the sectarianism that plagues Iraq today; it was the invasion that led to ISIS, which led to the creation of the Shia militia that the U.S. just bombed. It was the US invasion that overthrew a Sunni leader, Saddam Hussein, and opened the way for the Shia to take power, giving Iran newfound influence.

7.   Don’t forget 1953 in Iran. The media often cite the 1979 hostage crisis as the roots of the US-Iran conflict. But we really must go back to 1953. The current Iranian regime came to power in an uprising against a corrupt authoritarian monarch that was installed in a 1953 U.S.-backed coup against Iran’s democratically-elected liberal government. It was precisely U.S. interference in Iran that led to the regime that the US is trying to overthrow today.

8.   It’s not our business who governs Iran—or anywhere outside our borders. The Trump administration may want regime change in Iran, but Iran is a sovereign country and its people should be the ones to decide how they are governed. Just as we don’t want foreign interference in our elections, so we must stop interfering in the internal affairs of other nations.

9.   The U.S. must change its course. The US must immediately end the military attacks, lift the harmful sanctions, return to the Iran nuclear deal and reopen diplomatic channels.  The U.S. military and its contractors, who should not have been there in the first place, should get out of Iraq and the entire region.


Sign Our Petitions!

Tell Congress: don’t let Trump take us to war with Iran! 

Add your name to our letter to the Iranian people apologizing for the actions of the Trump administration and pledging to do all that you can to stop a war and end the sanctions.


Share Our Video!


Visit Congress!

Visit your member of Congress at his/her district office with a few other like-minded people — strive for ethnic, age and gender balance. Email Template to Set Up a Meeting:

Use this sample email template to send to your Representative and Senators schedulers local offices.

Hello. I am writing to you as a constituent and member of the grassroots peace organization CODEPINK to request a meeting with the (Representative or Senator himself/herself) or a staffer to discuss actions Congress can take to prevent a war with Iran.

I am deeply concerned by the Trump administration provoking a war with Iran that is ripped from the same pages of the failed Iraq playbook. Withdrawing from the Iran nuclear deal, imposing crippling brutal sanctions, assassinating Iranian General Qasem Solemani and sending thousands of more troops to the Middle East have brought us to the brink of a war that the American people do not want. There are numerous bills right now to assert the War Powers Act that I would like to discuss the (Senator/Congressperson) or a staffer supporting.

I look forward to hearing from you soon. Please feel free to contact me at (email) or (phone) if you have any questions.

Sincerely,

(your name)

(Your address)

Talking Points for your meeting with Congress

  • Article 1, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution gives Congress the sole power to declare war. Which makes it clear that it is illegal to attack Iran under the War Powers Act and U.S. constitution. Congress must act now to reaffirm its powers and not let the administration take us into another costly war.
  • This is a repeat of the Iraq war lead up. The Trump administration is framing Iran as the greatest threats the U.S. faces similar to how Bush portrayed Iraq and Saddam Hussein. They are attempting to sell false narrative by cherry-picking issues that will fit their narrative for regime change and destabilization in Iran. The Trump administration complains that Iran did not met its obligations under the Iran nuclear deal. However, the International Atomic Energy Agency, the organization monitoring Iran’s compliance to the nuclear agreement, had confirmed in 14 consecutive reports that Iran was adhering to the deal until Trump withdrew the U.S. from it. Trump’s own CIA intelligence confirmed Iran’s compliance with the Iran nuclear agreement.
  • Trump administration’s maximum pressure campaign weakens moderates and reformists in Iran. This diminishes chances of engagement and diplomacy with Iran and the West. Hardliners who were against the Iran Nuclear Deal became more powerful and use this leverage to crackdown on civil society and human rights activists.
  • Secretary of State Mike Pompeo organized an anti-Iran summit in Warsaw, Poland. In February 2019 Pompeo invited 70 countries to discuss a new pressure campaign with our allies against Iran. This however, failed because of pressure from our European partners who still support the Iran agreement.
  • Classifying Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) as a terrorist organization led to an escalation in the Middle East. In retaliation, Iran named the U.S. Central Command as a foreign terrorist organization. The IRGC and U.S. have often worked jointly in Syria and Iraq against ISIS. Trump and Pompeo goals are to stir up more conflict in the region in order to justify U.S. intervention.
  • Our European allies have rejected U.S. escalation with Iran. The EU has been urging the U.S. to use "maximum restraint" with Iran and encourages dialogue and diplomatic engagement. 

Come to DC and stay at the DC Activist House and do a week's lobbying, networking with other activists, and observing votes, debates and/or hearings in Congress.


Learn More!

Pick up Medea’s book Inside the Real History and Politics of the Islamic Republic of Iran

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