May 14, 2021
Members of the American Mideast Coalition for Democracy wish to thank Congressman Kilmer for his generosity in sending a knowledgeable senior aide to meet with us.
On May 13, 2021, AMCD members met with Bo Peard, aide to Congressman Derek Kilmer, who represents Washington State’s 6th district. Mr. Peard is a Nuclear Security Working Group Congressional Fellow and seemed very knowledgeable about Iranian issues. He assured our group that Congressman Kilmer recognizes the need to lengthen and strengthen the JCPOA while also addressing Iran’s other malign behaviors, including its missile development and support for terrorist groups. He stated that the Congressman wants to help the Biden administration address all these concerns and, most of all, to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.
Hossein Khorram offered that as “Black Lives Matter” so do “U.S. Servicemen Lives Matter.” He asked, how could we allow blood of over 800 servicemen in Iraq, 241 U.S. marines in Lebanon, 19 U.S. airman in Saudi Arabia, and more, be shed in vain because the United States is rewarding their killer, the Islamic Republic of Iran?
Author and board member Manda Zand Ervin expressed concern over the Islamic Republic’s gender apartheid regime. She explained how after the Islamic Revolution, women and children became the absolute property of men – another word for that is slavery. She explained that Islamic culture is not Iranian culture which is traditionally matriarchal. Before the fall of the Shah, Iran had three female Senators, 28 female Members of Parliament and 3 female members of the cabinet. The mullahs do not represent Iran’s 3,000 year history. Cyrus the Great gave the world the first proclamation of human rights.
She went on to say that this regime is not wanted by the people. A recent poll revealed that 88% of the Iranian people hate the regime. She explained that we are asking the US not to negotiate with the Islamic Republic. She suggested the US should negotiate with the people instead. 85 million Iranian people want freedom from their enemies who are ruling over them.
Other members also made impassioned pleas to take the suffering of the Iranian people into consideration. We were reminded that the regime frequently engages in targeted assassinations, kidnappings, extortion and drug dealing. Lastly, Bo was reminded that the Iranian regime supports the Taliban and will likely support them with fighters as well as weapons after the US withdraws from Afghanistan.