Despite the obvious constraints, elections in Iran - whether for the Assembly of Experts, the presidency, the parliament, or even the regional municipalities - can still tell observers a lot. And they also matter; they can be the difference between the slow wearing down of the hardliners’ outsized control or the further consolidation of power in their hands. This Open Briefing article for Foreign Affairs explores how the coming Assembly of Experts vote could shape Iran's future.
Tag: Ali Khamenei
Parsing Iran’s grand strategy
To understand the Islamic Republic we need to not look not at its consistencies but at its 'adjustments'. Iran has now placed a premium on maximising both influence and soft power, constantly renegotiating its margins of maneuver and seeking situations of strength where possible. Whatever hard power it still holds, it has repurposed into tools of deterrence in order to hold its enemies hostage against the threat of regime decapitation and war.
National security decision-making in Iran
In this journal article for Comparative Strategy, Open Briefing analyst Kevjn Lim reviews national security decision-making in the Iranian context by focusing on institutions, formal process and individuals. He specifically examines the Supreme National Security Council, which formalises and embodies the decision-making process, as well as the Revolutionary Guards, which epitomise both the influence of institutions as well as the centrality of the agent-individual.
What Rouhani may mean for Iranians
Open Briefing: Iranian president-elect Hassan Rouhani’s positive reputation among Western powers when he led Iran’s nuclear negotiations provides Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, if he wants, with the pretext for greater flexibility at this critical point.
Tehran’s man in Baghdad
The last round of the P5+1 talks weren't held in Baghdad by chance. While Iran's nuclear dispute still has no clear endgame in sight, the next phase in Persian power play is quietly being rolled out next door ...
Iranian parliamentary elections indicator of regime’s and Supreme Leader’s mounting anxieties
Khamenei’s chief challenge will be to preserve the status quo and his influence-patronage networks. This will be reflected in the individuals approved by him to head the key institutions, including the next presidency in 2013 ...