233 Items

Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani

Tasnim News

Analysis & Opinions - The National Interest

Geopolitical Fight Club: Why Iraq Must Square off with Saudi Arabia

| Mar. 26, 2018

High mistrust of Saudi Arabia by Iraqi Shi’as is hampering any meaningful outreach Saudi is undertaking toward Iraq and any policy of balancing Iraq and Iran will not succeed unless serious steps toward sectarian de-escalation is taken in the region. In order to bridge the gap, there needs to be broad religious dialogue to discuss the role of Shia’s and Sunnis in the region and forge a common space for the inclusion of both denominations. Major Grand Ayatollahs—the highest authorities in the Shi’a world—have taken positive steps of forbidding the ritual cursing of certain companions of the Prophet Muhammad and the early caliphs considered reverential to the Sunni community. In this endeavor the role of Ayatollah Sistani in Najaf will be crucial as he has a track record of promoting better relations between Shi’as and Sunnis and is an authoritative moderating figure who can reign in hardline elements in Iraq who might be opposed to a détente.

Central Bank of Iran

Tasnim News

Analysis & Opinions

Did Bad Economic Conditions Cause Iran’s protests?

| Mar. 01, 2018

Like other Iranian president before him, President Hassan Rouhani is having a bad second term. Only six months after his decisive re-election, protesters were in streets shouting “Death to Rouhani.” Then came a sharp fall in the value of the rial, by 10% in two weeks, which threatens to undo the principal economic achievement of his first term—lowering inflation—and his plans to lower interest rates. Iran’s Central Bank had to increase interest rates last month to stop the fall of the rial. These are precarious times for Rouhani, who has won two elections promising economic revival.

Iran US America Flag

Wikimedia

Analysis & Opinions - The National Interest

Recognizing the Limitations of American Influence in Iran

| Feb. 14, 2018

It is time for a reality check: despite claims to the contrary by Iran’s supreme leader, the United States is not the central actor in the drama that recently unfolded in Iran, nor was it the central actor in Egypt back in 2011. The mass protests that forced the Egyptian dictator from power were driven by the Egyptian public’s growing disenchantment with decades of political, economic and social mismanagement by a succession of military rulers. Contemporary observers noted with surprise the absence of references to the United States or other foreign-policy considerations during the protests. The demonstrators’ recurrent chant—“bread, freedom, social justice and human dignity”—encapsulated the domestic motivations behind the public’s mobilization.

Rouhani

Tasnim News

Blog Post - Iran Matters

A Wake-up Call to Rouhani

    Author:
  • Masoud Movahed
| Jan. 17, 2018

The recent protests in Iran are surely a wakeup call for President Rouhani. To respond the legitimate grievances of low-income Iranian households, the Rouhani government should do its best to further diversify the Iranian economy and to bolster its manufacturing and industrial sectors. The Rouhani government should also promote the export of non-oil products, following the models of countries such as South Korea, Taiwan, and recently, the Chinese leviathan. Labor-intensive industries as well as service sectors like information technology, ought to be solidified. Rouhani should call upon state-directed industrial committees and agencies to provide Iranian entrepreneurs and manufacturers with fiscal resources, and he should foster financial support and protection for firms that place emphasis on exporting goods abroad.

iran president rouhani

Wikicommons

Analysis & Opinions - Aljazeera

Causes behind Iran's protests: A preliminary account

| Jan. 06, 2018

The causes of the uprising that has been rocking the Islamic Republic of Iran for a week now are unsurprisingly both structural and contingent. Initially kicked off by the economically dispossessed youth and joined by lower sections of the middle class, students and also some pensioners, it has reached an unprecedented geographical scope with protests spanning across 70 mainly smaller cities and towns in all four corners of the country.  Besides the structural factors that have been an almost constant feature of the Islamic Republic's rule, the past months and weeks have added a new level of discontent with the regime as a whole, which led me to speculate the recent waves of protests "may only be a forerunner of more to come." 

Iranian IRGC Commandos

Tasnim News

Analysis & Opinions - CNN

2018 for Iran: Ripe for Miscalculation?

| Dec. 19, 2017

To end the year, Fareed Zakaria's CNN Global Briefing is running an exclusive series of quick takes this week from leading analysts. They will all be writing on the big issues to watch out for around the world in 2018. Iran was at the center of developments in a volatile Middle East throughout 2017. Expect more of the same in 2018, writes Payam Mohseni, Iran Project Director and Fellow for Iran Studies at Harvard’s Belfer Center.

Nuclear Talks between Iran and World Powers

US State Department

Analysis & Opinions - Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

How to Ensure Iran Never Resumes Reprocessing

| Dec. 13, 2017

Though the negotiation leading to the JCPOA took place over a significant stretch of time—indeed, it was built on the foundation of talks that began in 2003—it’s important to remember that the deal contains critical concessions regarding Iran’s production of plutonium, which the United States had been seeking from Tehran since the 1970s, when the two countries were allies.

Prime Minster Saad Hariri

Wikicommons

Blog Post - Iran Matters

Lebanon Caught in the Crosshairs

| Dec. 06, 2017

Eight long days after the shocking resignation of Lebanon’s Prime Minister out of Saudi Arabia, Saad Hariri made his first public appearance. On the evening of Sunday, 12 November, the Arab world gathered in front of the TV, for not only the future of Lebanon was at stake but that of the entire region. The small country on the eastern Mediterranean coast had again been catapulted onto the main stage of the region’s heated geopolitical rivalries. The interview Hariri gave also took place in the Saudi kingdom, which had spurred speculations that he was held there against his will. During that interview, he could barely invalidate that impression: The tensions in the room were palpable. Too clearly his body language and his contradictory statements were a display of massive pressure that lied on him.

tehran, iran

WikiCommons

Blog Post - Iran Matters

"Tehran: A City of Hope, Participation and Prosperity"

    Author:
  • Sahar Saeidnia
| Nov. 22, 2017

One might find the motto of the newly elected reformist mayor of Tehran, Mohammad Ali Najafi, surprising and inconsistent with the Islamic Republic of Iran’s (IRI) political project. Or, conversely, one might interpret it, along with the victory of many reformist candidates in the 2017 local council elections, as a sign of the regime’s opening. Yet, this binary undermines the “complexity of the Iranian puzzle” and is reductive of domestic political processes that have shaped competitive Iranian factionalist politics since 1979.

Rouhani and Salehi outside the Bushehr Nuclear Plant

Tasnim News

Blog Post - iran-matters

An Iranian Nuclear Business Deal for Trump

    Author:
  • Sayed Hossein Mousavian
| Nov. 01, 2017

As the world’s largest nuclear facilities operators, U.S. corporations understand all aspects of nuclear programs. Employing those same corporations to partner and collaborate with Iran on nuclear projects would be a major confidence-building step that would secure trust between the two sides after the sunset provisions of the deal expire. The people of Iran and the United States have never been enemies. Now is the time to seek a legitimate business-based compromise that can allow the United States and Iran to fully execute the JCPOA in full compliance with both the substance and intent of each of the deal’s signatories while pursing the long-term goal of eliminating the growth and proliferation of nuclear weapons and nuclear terrorism. To this end, Iran and the US can in parallel collaborate on eliminating the risk of proliferation in the region and establishing a Middle East free from all weapons of mass destruction.