Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

Is there a political shift going on in Iran?

Okay, none of these specifics will be on the exam, but these examples will help identify the actors in the Iranian regime.

Iran’s Leaders Fall Into Line Behind Nuclear Accord
Since the Islamic Revolution in 1979, Iranian hard-liners have been free to take to the streets and object to any form of compromise with the West…

Javad Zarif
But when a conspicuously small group of hard-liners did so on Tuesday morning in front of the Parliament building… the Iranian Interior Ministry condemned the demonstration as illegal, because the protesters had failed to obtain a permit…

It was perhaps the first time that conservatives… seemed disconnected from the power structure here.

Analysts say the message from the top is clear: Get with the program. Senior officials, important clerics, lawmakers and Revolutionary Guards commanders, who in the past have reflexively opposed any accommodation with the West, now go out of their way to laud Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and his team of negotiators…

Only one man had remained silent: Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the supreme leader, whose word is always the last. However, analysts say the broad support among conservatives is almost certainly a reflection of his thinking…

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