top of page

Iran Protests and Youth: A Generation Striving for Freedom Won’t Tolerate Oppression

Nationwide Iran protests entered their second month despite the regime’s severe crackdown and the death of over 400 protesters. Iranian youth play a leading role in current demonstrations, forcing the tightly controlled state media to acknowledge this fact.

“Obviously, the youth are the backbone of protests. For many of them, participation in demonstrations is their first political and social action,” the state-run Hamandishan wrote in this regard.

This article underlines how the tragic death of Mahsa Amini, accosted by the police, sparked these protests. “But this tragedy is no longer the denominator of these demonstrations, and the protesting population is no longer just the youth. All those who come to the street these days and protest in any way are defying the ruling system. They are revolting against this ‘peace of the graveyard,’” reads the article.

Many observers believe that protests have morphed into a revolution. Deep anger has been building for years, and the current uprising is the broadest display of a restive society. Generation after generation following the 1979 revolution, Iranians have experienced corruption, oppression, restrictions, and the regime’s mismanagement.

“Iran’s society is full of abandoned problems. Undoubtedly, the consequence of ignoring social diversity and pluralism or imposing [the regime’s] ideological criteria and standards on everyday life will lead to a social explosion,” the state-run Sharq daily wrote in this regard on October 14.

The security forces have resorted to maximum violence but have so far failed to quash protests and demoralize Iranian youth and women. People chant on streets: “When someone falls, a thousand rise.”

“This generation is both brave and committed, and resilient. They are constantly updating and clarifying their solutions. They are dedicated forces that are not afraid of war and minefields, and such forces are destined for immortality and will undoubtedly tire any classical force,” Hamandishegan wrote in this regard.

These chartists and values are shared by all Iranians in different generations.

Throughout the years, Iranian youths took to the streets to demand their rights, but the regime responded violently, killing and arresting thousands. Like other generations, the Iranian youth now want freedom and are on the path that tens of thousands of martyrs paved with their blood.

Young Iranians share the same values as those who have been resisting for the past four decades against the regime. These values guide them by rejecting the old rules and laws and aspiring for a free society, free communication, and freedom of expression.

Values are mental processes, both cognitive and emotional. They combine representations, concepts, goals, and beliefs with positive or negative valences of emotional attitudes. Hence, every generation tends to live up to the ideals and values it has grown up with.

The previous generations’ uprisings stemmed from different social reasons and sometimes the power struggle at the top. But the 2022 protests sparked due to a conflict between the regime’s restriction and people’s demand for freedom. Therefore, as protests endure despite the heavy crackdown, more youth are approaching Iran’s leading opposition, the Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK), and joining the organization’s “Resistance Units” network. The Resistance Unis are the trailblazers of the current protests and have acted as sledgehammers to break the atmosphere of fear with their operations.

Iran 2022: MEK Resistance Units Take Major Strides in Iran

Masoud Faruzandeh, a state-affiliated researcher, told the official IRNA news agency: “The driving force behind the recent movement is leaning towards the middle class, including women, students, and artists. The core stems from students and women and a non-radical majority. Of course, radical and rebellious strains leaning towards the MEK and the Kurdistan Democratic Party are also visible.”

This is not a coincidence. The MEK has been struggling for a free and democratic Iran and defends the values Iranian youth yearning for.

In a nutshell, nationwide Iran protests are not just an emotional reaction of some “deceived youths,” as the apologist state officials try to imply. These protests are organized and have a clear objective: regime change. This is the cause that several generations have been demanding and paying the price for it.

The world community should support this righteous demand and recognize the Iranian people’s right to self-determination and self-defense in the face of a brutal regime. Iranians, particularly the new generation, are destined to achieve freedom. Will the international community stand on the right side of history and help them?


bottom of page