Supporting MEK a Lose-Lose Proposition for Israel

At the Daily Beast’s Open Zion blog, Trita Parsi questioned the wisdom of Israel organizing MEK’s (Mujahedin-e Khalq) murderous attacks on Iranian scientists.

First, any attempt by Israel to hold the higher moral ground and point fingers at the regime in Tehran will be lost if Israel itself is entangled with violent terrorist groups that kill indiscriminatingly. … Second, if Israel teams up with an organization described by the US State Department as “fundamentally undemocratic” and “not a viable alternative to the current government of Iran,” the argument that peace in the region would be achieved if only the other states in the region were as democratic as Israel will become even more unconvincing.

And finally, this will likely undermine Israel’s ability to rebuild ties with the Iranian people down the road. The MEK has the dubious honor of being the only entity more disliked by the Iranian people than the Iranian regime itself.

One of Israel’s main beefs with Iran is that it’s been a state sponsor of terrorism. But, by collaborating with MEK inside Iran, Israel becomes just another kettle calling a plot back. Why would Israel jeopardize its cherished state-sponsor-of-terrorism card? Perhaps because it thinks it can be of help in the process of removing the perception of MEK as a terrorist group. Parsi explains.

All of this has fueled suspicions in DC that the current multi-million dollar lobbying campaign by the MEK to get off of the State Department’s terror list is bankrolled by Israeli sources.

Obviously, that does nothing to make MEK’s actions or Israel’s support of them go away. Unfortunately, if you can handle one last cliché, that horse has left the barn.