January 26, 2014

An Iranian Moderate Exposed

Ali Alfoneh & Reuel Gerecht, The New Republic

The Associated Press

Above all else, Rouhani and Zarif aim to preserve the Islamic revolution, not to transform it, as was the passion of the fallen left-wing Islamist revolutionaries who gathered round Khatami and briefly resurfaced in the pro-democracy Green Movement, which Khamenei crushed in 2009. (Neither Rouhani nor Zarif raised a word against the brutal crackdown.) Although Khamenei unquestionably would have preferred Saeed Jalili to be president, he has probably lucked out with Rouhani. Rouhani at home and Zarif abroad are infinitely more effective at hunar-e ta’amul. While Rouhani tries to re-weave the unity of the Iranian elite, badly frayed by the turmoil of 2009, and by Khamenei’s vindictive demolition of Rafsanjani’s political network, and by the anti-clerical populism of Ahmadinejad,...

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TAGGED: Iran, Mohammad Javad Zarif

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