Iran has the highest ranking statistics in brain drain and is ranked first in the world in this regard, according to an International Monetary Fund report. Those leaving the country are college students, academicians, engineers, physicians, university professors and sons and daughters of former government officials who are forced to leave the country seeking a better life. Some reports also indicate when Iran was ruled by the Pahlavi dynasty the number of Iranians departing the country did not surpass the 50,000 mark.
Statistics indicate in the past 30 years under this regime’s rule 6 to 7 million Iranians have departed the country. The first reason behind this massive migration is the political crackdown imposed by the regime, and other factors are second grade issues. The mullahs’ have brought nothing but crackdown, torture, murder, execution, people starving and living in harsh conditions, corruption, prostitution and … This is the main element that has forced this massive migration out of Iran as Iranians are departing their country in waves aiming to start a life in dignity in any country possible.
More than 40 million Iranians are living under the poverty line, according to official government numbers. With 4 million drug addicts Iran has the highest such numbers per capita. As you already know Iran has been condemned 62 times to this day by the UN and affiliated organs for human rights violations and increasing executions. To this day hundreds of newspapers have been closed down inside Iran and 174 types of different tortures used against political prisoners. Over 120,000 political prisoners have been executed during the span of the mullahs’ rule in Iran. Over 30,000 political prisoners were mass executed by Iran in less than a month back in 1988.
There are 11 million Iranians living in city outskirts and they do not enjoy decent living conditions. 63% in urban areas and 77% in rural areas of Iran are living in poverty, according to the state-run Tabnak website. Obviously, economic, political, cultural reasons, in addition to the regime’s crackdown, are various reasons that have led to the major migration and many of the Iranian people have left the country. 150,000 to 200,000 Iranians are departing the country each year, and the money spent for these individuals is equal to the entire budget of the 8-year-long Iran-Iraq War back in the 1980s.
The truth is that those leaving Iran are mostly the country’s great minds, including intellectuals and college graduates. 400,000 Iranian doctors, engineers, physicians and college graduates are currently living in the United States, according to official census reports. Iranian exiles comprise the largest group of foreign exiles in the U.S. Those exiting Iran are individuals that the Iranian people have paid huge sums of money to raise to their level of expertise, and they are all very qualified people. However, they cannot live under the shadows of the repressive and dictatorial regime in Iran and they were forced to leave their homeland.
In my opinion those working abroad at the service of this regime are no more than 1%. From former presidents Mohammad Khatami and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to current President Hassan Rouhani have all attempted to lure and encourage Iranians living outside of the country to return. However, none have responded or are willing to live under this regime. In fact the trend has been exactly the opposite and larger waves of people are fleeing the country. However, regarding those who lobby for this regime, these are individuals that are close to the regime’s own officials. Close to officials such as Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif. They cannot be considered amongst the Iranian Diaspora.
The principle of patriotism does not change for Iranians living in exile. However, they are very experiences in this regard. During Khatami’s tenure he claimed to be a reform, yet it was proven there will never be any changes from within the regime’s apparatus. Amnesty International issued a report back in January 2015 saying the number of executions under Rouhani’s government has been more than all his predecessors in the past 25 years, even more than Ahmadinejad’s term. This shows that the entire complex ruling Iran under the name of the mullahs’ regime must change, or there will not be any fundamental change in Iran. There were cases of Iranians who returned from the U.S. to Iran, yet they were arrested by the regime and are currently in prison. Therefore, Iranians in exile will never provide a positive answer to any mullah, especially considering the fact that Rouhani himself has for 20 years taken part in one of the highest entities involved in the crackdown and killings against the Iranian people. Rouhani has a long record of being involved in this regime’s repressive and cruel measures. Then how can the Iranian community in exile be expected to trust Rouhani or any other mullah?
We cannot say that all Iranians who exited Iran did so due to economic problems. Most of them have left the country to flee the crackdown imposed by the regime in Iran. Tens of thousands of Iranians have been executed by this regime. Most Iranians executed are physicians, educated people, intellectuals and even mullahs that are against the ruling apparatus. Under this increasing wave of executions the intellectuals in Iran have not been able to live an ordinary life inside the country. Therefore, they have left Iran knowing their people are seeking to overthrow this regime and like all dictatorships, the mullahs will also be thrown into the dustbin of history.