Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Checking in on state capacity

Are victims of disasters ever satisfied with the response from the state? Are the levels of response related to physical capacity or politics? I noted that the area hardest hit by the earthquake is a Kurdish area. What do you know about Kurds in Iran?

Iran-Iraq earthquake: Rouhani vows action over collapsed buildings
Iran's President Hassan Rouhani has vowed to "find the culprits" responsible for buildings collapsing in a 7.3-magnitude earthquake on Sunday.

He suggested that government-built buildings had collapsed while privately-built ones remained standing.

As he spoke in the worst-affected city, Sarpol-e Zahab, he gestured to two buildings, one of which had collapsed while the other had not…

A photograph circulating on social media shows an unaffected private building next to a collapsed building that was part of the Mehr project, a scheme created by previous President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to build two million housing units for people on low incomes.

Mehr is Farsi for kindness, and under the scheme hundreds of homes were built…

Government's slow response criticised
Analysis by Jiyar Gol, BBC Persian
Forty-eight hours after the earthquake, thousands of people complain that still they have no tents, food or water. They complain about the lack of co-ordination between security forces and aid agencies. Although many soldiers showed up, they didn't have enough ambulances or proper machinery to move rubble.

More than 1,900 Kurdish mountain villages have been affected. The villagers say no one from the government has come to their rescue but ordinary Iranians from neighbouring cities and provinces have started sending aid.

Most of the government-sponsored affordable housing complexes for the poor were damaged severely, and many died inside…

President Rouhani brought attention to this, saying those responsible for the projects - initiated under his predecessor's presidency - must be held accountable…

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