LETTER TO IRANIAN
My Fellow Iranians,
Our beloved country Iran is at a crossroads – one of great peril, but also significant opportunity. Mounting tensions between Iran and the Western world, and our country’s worsening economic condition threaten us and our future generations on multiple fronts. Our economic plight – caused by ever-tightening international economic sanctions against our country, coupled with ineffective policies and management styles of our government institutions – have placed our brothers and sisters and the children of this land in a precarious position.
We must come together to change this situation and build a country worthy of Iran’s great name and in line with its rich human and material resources. To reverse the current trends, our noble people seek new solutions. We must make the most of our upcoming presidential elections on June 14, 2013. Do we want an election focused on name-calling and settling scores, or do we wish to focus on practical solutions and tangible results?
It is in this context that I have announced my candidacy for President of the Islamic Republic of Iran in the upcoming elections. I am promoting a platform of hope, positive change, and practical solutions, both within Iran and on the world stage. By running for president, I aim to promote fair and transparent elections that re-establish our country’s credibility in fostering peaceful political change, and to significantly improve the political environment in Iran.
My campaign is focused on achieving measured change and practical results through national reconciliation, a broad-based and inclusive development agenda, and international peace. If you honor me with your vote, I pledge to pursue Iran’s national unity and national interests through:
- Leveraging a wide network of competent leaders and managers from across social and political groups.
- Achieving enhanced prosperity and pride for the Iranian nation through a set of effective policies responding to the requirements of a changing world.
- Crafting an effective foreign policy based on building trust with major international powers including the United States, focusing on lifting economic sanctions on our country and attracting human and material resources and investment.
- Fostering national solidarity and political amnesty, democratic participation and individual rights, independence and territorial integrity, and social justice for the youth, women and disadvantaged communities.
- Attaining rapid social and economic development, including the generation of adequate jobs for men and women, removal of obstacles to entrepreneurial activities, facilitation of fast-pace industrialization, reconnection of the Iranian Diaspora to society and economy of their homeland, and promotion of equity.
- Advancing Iran’s territorial interests by building strong defense, protecting the environment, building efficient transportation and communications systems, creating sustainable settlement patterns, promoting sectoral and provincial decentralization, and protecting and promoting the national heritage.
Over the past four decades, despite the many challenges and perils, I have dedicated my working life to the pursuit of the above agenda. Beginning with my visits to the war fronts in the 1980s to survey and appraise the damage and the needs of reconstruction, continuing with my incessant work in the U.S. in favor of dialogue and engagement, my leadership in organizing the historic speech of then-US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright offering apologies to the people of Iran for the 1953 Coup, and in numerous other achievements, I have proven my love for Iran and my commitment to addressing major issues facing our homeland.
I have written and edited a dozen influential books and numerous seminal essays and articles dealing with Iran’s economic, political, cultural, and foreign policy challenges and opportunities. Books such as Revolution and Economic Transition: The Iranian Experience (1990) or Small Islands, Big Politics: The Tunbs and Abu Musa in the Persian Gulf (1996) or The Caspian Region at A Crossroad (2000), as well as scores of my essays and interviews in international and Tehran-based journals and newspapers over the past few decades have carried my constructive messages promoting Iran’s interests.
I am also proud to have been co-founder of the Center for Iranian Research and Analysis, founding director of Middle Eastern Studies at Rutgers University, Chairman of the Department of Urban Planning and Policy Development at Rutgers, and founder of the American-Iranian Council, all of which have made seminal contributions to the worlds of ideas and policy making.
My message throughout my career has been consistent: if our country is to reach its potential and overcome its challenges, we must learn better teamwork and rise above the exclusionary approaches, insults, and name-calling. I believe I have both the maturity and the drive to deal with the formidable challenges our people confront at this juncture in our long history.
Our campaign website is dedicated to my election platform and biography and to ideas for building the Iran of tomorrow, at peace within and in normal trade and engagement with the world. I encourage you, my fellow citizens, in Iran and around the world, to spend time on our website and to share it with friends and colleagues. I hope you will join this campaign of hope and ideas. I ask you to support us with your ideas and through other means.
As my track record of the past few decades clearly shows, I have always been committed to building an inclusive and forward-looking Iran. By announcing my candidacy to serve our country as president, I am offering to place my life-long commitment to our country’s wellbeing at the service of my beloved Iranian people. I request that you, my brothers and sisters, join me in advancing our country’s welfare. Together, I am certain we can make a significant difference. We must work together to build an Iran worthy of our country’s great name.
I hope you will join us in this noble endeavor.