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Monday, June 27, 2005

More on Iran

This op-ed by Amir Taheri is well worth reading. Excerpt:

Ahmadinejad's victory means that Khamenehi, who has established himself as head of the most radical faction within the Khomeinist establishment, now controls all levers of power for the first time. He will now be able to put his own men in charge of all key government departments. Any idea of Western-style reforms to please the restive middle classes will be abandoned. The concentration of power in the hands of the radical faction will end more than two decades of divided government that has put many aspects of policy on autopilot as it were. Two years ago when King Abdullah II of Jordan telephoned Khatami to complain about Iran setting up terrorist cells in Amman, the Iranian president was able to claim that he knew nothing of it because he did not control all organs of government. The Europeans who have been negotiating with Tehran over the nuclear issue have also heard similar claims from Iranian counterparts. With Ahmadinejad in charge, however, such claims will no longer be credible because the camarilla headed by Khamenehi is now in complete control. Rafsanjani had promised the Chinese model - meaning the combination of a despotic political regime with capitalist economic policies. Ahmadinejad promises a North Korean model - that is to say a totalitarian system and a command economy.
Read the whole thing. I am still trying to come to grips with what the results of the Iranian election will mean for geo-political balance. There are a lot of factors to consider, some positive and some negative. I am leaning toward the opinion that, on balance, this will end up being a positive development as the conflict will clarify, which may have been a requirement for a solution all along.


Blogger Greg said...

I didn't read the entire article; I got the general sense of it from the exerpt you quoted. I am afraid the election of Rafsanjani bodes very, very bad for the region and the free world, since events in the Middle East hold the keys to this planet's future. Now, more than ever, it's up to us-Israel and the U.S. to right this wrong that is Islamic militarims. If we take quick steps to rid Iran of its nuclear reacotrs there's a chance for future peace; if we fail to, I'll have to ponder what the future-or lack of one-holds.

6/28/2005 09:29:00 AM  

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