The dramatic events surrounding the presidential election in Iran on June 12 this year have radically changed the political situation in the country. Never before in the history of the 30-year-old republic have there been such large-scale demonstrations against the regime. The events after the election have created a deep divide in a country where the fronts are steep against each other.
- Who stood against each other in the elections in Iran in June 2009?
- What is the power struggle in Iran about?
- How can developments in Iran affect the international community?
The uprising after the election was a revolt not only against alleged electoral fraud , but also against the Islamic Republic as a form of government . It was then also beaten down with a hard hand. Nevertheless, there are many indications that it will in one way or another lead to change in Iran. This applies to the political institutions in the republic as well as the Iranian political culture.
2: In what direction?
Today, it is unwise to say whether these changes will go in a democratic or dictatorial direction. Should the Mousavi front, which marched in the streets and complain about electoral fraud, gain ground, civil and political rights for the people of Iran will be markedly strengthened. ( Hossein Mousavi , leader of the opposition and prime minister of Iran in the 1980s). If, on the other hand, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his supporters gain the upper hand as it now stands, there is reason to believe that everything that has today been eroded by democracy in the Republic of Iran will be weakened. The Islamic Republic will move in the direction of a dictatorship in which the Pasdaran (security police ) and the Basij militia (semi-military) will be the mainstays.
For several weeks we witnessed mass arrests and the use of force against those who do not conform to the line of Ali Khamenei and Ahmadinejad. Ali Khamenei is the supreme leader of the Iranian Security Council . The repression of people’s human rights and other civil rights that took place during Ahmadinejad’s previous term has intensified in the wake of the election uprising . As long as Khamenei and President Ahmadinejad remain in power, liberalization will not come into play, on the contrary, there is reason to fear austerity.
Those in power are scared. They are afraid because the street uprising after the election showed that the forces in Iran that want a freer Iran are strong and represent a real threat to the regime. History shows that authoritarian forces usually do not grant concessions to the will of the people, but rather the opposite: Demands for greater freedom are met with austerity.
3: A country in internal strife
According to sunglassestracker, Iran is today a nation at odds with itself . The Islamic revolution in 1979, which was based on an ideology with strong theocratic elements – but also democratic – has been seriously tested. The rift within the elites of the republic – be it clergy or military – has become visible. In the domestic political dispute, the supreme leader Khamenei has received serious scratches in the paint by giving his support to the faction hired by Ahmadinejad. This violates the principle of the leader’s free position and independent status when it comes to relations with the warring groups (factions). His strength lies in interpreting the governing principle of the Qur’an.
For that reason, it is expected that the leader will keep a certain distance to the type of factional struggle we are witnessing. Khamenei has not distanced himself – on the contrary – he has strongly attached himself to one party in the conflict, Ahmadinejad. Thus, Khamenei has weakened one of the main dogmas of the Islamic Republic. The regime is today characterized by a crisis of legitimacy and has fallen back on the use of raw power.
From being the stage for an unparalleled political mobilization against the regime, the streets of Iran change during the election of the president to become a city of confrontation. On the one hand, there are those who want a freer Iran, on the other, those who want police and semi-military forces that are dusting off old ideas from the days of the revolution in 1979. By filling the streets with security forces, expelling foreign journalists and executing and imprisoning opposition insurgents put the regime a partial stop to the street as an arena for mobilization.
4: Use of enemy image
Another setback the regime has benefited from is to evoke an enemy image of the West : Destructive Western forces want to divide the Iranian nation. It is those who have been behind the demonstrations, it is said from the regime. Proponents of her case have been working to make the actual transcript of this statement available online. The negative in society is not due to the Iranians themselves, but to outsiders, often satanic forces – implicitly the West. It is nevertheless the case that the slogans from the days of the revolution are about to lose their power at the same time as the counter-rhetoric is about to take root. “Death over the United States” is met by the protesters with “Death over Russia”.