Israeli Defense Minister Encourages Iranian Protesters, Asks, ‘Where Is All Your Money Going?’
Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman sought to encourage the ongoing protests in Iran against the ruling Islamic regime on Tuesday, issuing a Facebook post in Farsi that addressed the ongoing political and economic discontent that appears to be driving the demonstrations.
“Where is all your money going?” Yediot Ahronot quoted Lieberman as saying. “Until today, despite domestic economic difficulties, the Iranian regime continues to invest millions in Syria, Hezbollah, Islamic Jihad, the Houthis, and Shiite militias in Iraq.”
“In 2018, Iran pledged to pay $2.5 billion dollars to these organizations,” he continued. “As of now, Iran has invested $14 billion in Syria alone.”
Referencing the head of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, Lieberman said, “Even last month, when you were fighting for your bread in the streets of Tehran, Qassem Soleimani took several actions, including a logistical operation intended for Syria at the price of $70 million.”
Waves of protests have been ongoing in Iran for several months, most of them focusing on economic issues. However, the unrest has taken on a political dimension as well, expressing outrage at foreign expenditures despite the difficult economic situation at home.
In recent days, there have been major protests outside the parliament building and in the main bazaar in Tehran, apparently sparked by a major drop in the value of the Iranian currency, the rial. The demonstrators called on shops to close in solidarity with the protests, with partial success.
The protesters have also shouted political slogans, such as “Leave Syria, leave Gaza and Lebanon, deal with Iran”; “Death to Khamenei,” referring to Iran’s top leader; and “Death to Palestine.”