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Iran Matters

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192 posts

Thaad north korea alaska

US Defense Department

Thaad north korea alaska

US Defense Department

In its attempts to deter North Korea from developing the capability to credibly threaten the continental United States with a nuclear weapon, Washington now finds itself in a crueler version of the strategic dilemma Israel faced in 2011 amid what it saw—or at least presented—as a closing operational window of opportunity to deal with Iran’s nuclear program. In his piece for Iran Matters, Daniel Sobelman argues that the basic structure of the crisis between the United States and North Korea is analogous to the challenge Israel faced when trying to dissuade or stop Iran from developing nuclear weapons.

Rouhani reelection rally

President.ir

Rouhani reelection rally

President.ir

What can we expect from Rouhani’s second term? The large majority with which he won does not change the basic fact that the number one decision-maker in Iran remains Supreme Leader Khamenei. Ephraim Kam writes to Iran Matters that it is doubtful that Rouhani’s large majority will translate into greater power vis-à-vis Khamenei and the regime’s radical wing, as the president will likely continue to depend on them.

Rouhani election rally 2017

Anadolu Agency

Rouhani election rally 2017

Anadolu Agency

Djavad Salehi-Isfahani, visiting scholar at the Belfer Center's Iran Project, sheds light on some of the most important economic topics relevant to the 2017 Iranian presidential election. 

Ebrahim Raisi, the leading conservative presidential candidate, delivers a speech to his supporters at Tehran's Hory Mosque (April 10, 2017)

Tasnim News

Ebrahim Raisi, the leading conservative presidential candidate, delivers a speech to his supporters at Tehran's Hory Mosque (April 10, 2017)

Tasnim News

With the Iranian presidential elections on the horizon, indicators are pointing towards another shift in Iran’s factional alignments. In this blog post for Iran Matters, Iran Project Director Payam Mohseni argues that Iran’s conservative and theocratic forces are overcoming the stark divisions within their power base and gaining significantly more unity and cohesion in their support of Raisi and opposition to Rouhani.

khamenei and rouhani

Khamenei.ir

Rouhani's War

    Author:
  • Arash Pourebrahimi
| May 09, 2017

khamenei and rouhani

Khamenei.ir

Arash Pourebrahimi, former visiting fellow in political economy at Harvard University, writes to Iran Matters on the true war that awaits President Rouhani after the May 19th presidential election: the successorship of the Supreme Leader. Pourebrahimi argues that while Rouhani has a good chance of reelection, he faces a tough battle in gaining the wider institutional support he needs to be influential in deliberations over the Supreme Leader's successor.

Iran ballistic missile program

Tasnim News

Iran ballistic missile program

Tasnim News

Farhad Rezaei, research fellow at the Center for Iranian Studies (IRAM) in Ankara, writes to Iran Matters on the implications of the IRGC's missile tests for the Rouhani administration, the Trump administration, and the upcoming Iranian presidential election. 

Rouhani and his cabinet

Mashregh News

Cracking Down on Iran through Turkey

    Author:
  • Engin Sune
| Apr. 20, 2017

Rouhani and his cabinet

Mashregh News

The case of Halkbank reveals a short-term disjointed relationship between Turkey and Iran. The Turkish government cites Halkbank’s economic success as evidence of a rising Turkey. Regarding the transfer of 51% of the bank’s share to the newly established Turkish Sovereign Wealth Fund in February 2017, the bank occupies a central role in the domestic and international policies of the Turkish state. For Iran, on the other hand, this relationship was a part of the ongoing strategy of creating alternative mechanisms to bypass the impact of sanctions. Therefore, there was a mutual economic interest for both countries, with Halkbank acting as a facilitator of this exchange. And while economic interest was at the core of the relationship, this cooperation established between Iran and Turkey spilled over into the political sphere in a limited manner. The political relations between Turkey and Iran have continued to fluctuate, stifling any possibility of a meaningful long-term political alliance. A number of recent regional and domestic developments have set further constrains on the emergence of a Turkey-Iran partnership.

Rouhani

Russia President

Rouhani

Russia President

A key foreign affairs issue for the Trump administration will be its policy on Iran, as was the case also for the Obama administration. But we have no idea what approach it will take, an uncertainty amplified by the fact that Trump has no experience whatsoever in foreign policy, and no idea whose input he will accept in shaping it. It’s not as if we have no information about his attitude – during the election campaign, Trump made his intention on Iran very clear – but, as with other topics, it is unclear how he will act when once he is forced to translate his intentions into action and realizes that reality is far more complicated than he imagined.

Ali Khamenei Military Parade

Khamenei.ir

Ali Khamenei Military Parade

Khamenei.ir

Aaron Arnold, Associate with the Project on Managing the Atom, analyzes whether or not Iran has made sufficient progress with regards to financial reform in order to see restrictions on banking lifted. He notes that while the Financial Action Task Force did not call for members to exercise countermeasures when dealing with Iranian financial institutions, he questions whether or not Iran has made moves towards to financial reform, and notes that it has not undertaken the mutual analysis efforts that other nations with financial concerns, such as Pakistan, have undertaken for more positive assessments from the FATF.