Final Show Down, Part II Makings Of a Revolution



A revolution implicates various elements that is in its nature such as political, economic, cultural, plus all others that become the thrust of a momentum that can not be stopped no matter what stands in its way. A revolution can become a beast, a living thing with its own flesh and blood and physical presence that intimidates bystanders and those from far beyond observing the movement of a massive hurricane sweeping across without discrimination of what is below. It also has mind and spirit. A mind that is convoluted with feeds of conflicting order, yet united into a single nucleus and purpose of uncompromising spirit. So it is in this realm of reality that once again Iran takes the center stage in the circus of life to hang and swing from a thin rope, as the tumbler and the catcher with no safety net under, and the spectators cheering on as they witness a glorious spectacle of life and death.

In the previous article we observed an analysis of Iran’s political structure and where the center of gravity lies. As the world winds on its asymmetric axis, so does Iran. While revolution is in human blood for the sake of survival, progress, or change, it is manifested out of necessity with few elements at its roots. The element of poverty becomes the most profound in its presence. Around 70% of the Iranian government’s revenue comes from oil and gas. Majority of which is planned and controlled by the State. There are large religious foundations called “Bonyads” which take up half of the government’s budget. Subsidies and price control interferes with normal economy. Contraband and widespread corruption is driving the private sector out of business. Guess who controls the contraband, non other than the Pasdaran. Ahmadinejad’s Value-Added Tax (vat), met with stern opposition in 2008. While higher oil prices resulted in 80 billion dollars in Foreign Exchange reserves (used to back Iran‘s currency), it has not helped the economy as it should have under improper management. (the Following statistics by Bahman Baktiari, 2/13/2009, The Middle East Institute, Iranian Society: A surprising Picture)…“Inflation 30%, increase in food prices in 2008 35%, deficit 50 billion, unemployment rate 16%. Of the 71 million population, 2/3 are under the age of 30, with a literacy rate of 85%, the highest in Moslem countries“. While the radical clerics in charge have done their best to stop the educational and intellectual progress of the youth in fear of westernization, this steam boat of progress can not be contained. Now more Iranians have become more liberal and less religious then ever. Less than 2 % attend mosques, more women graduate from the universities than men, over half of the students are women, and 1/3 of medical students are women. While education and the educated flourish, the very purpose of it all has been stagnant in comparison, that is creation of jobs to accommodate all the talent pool in Iran. That ties in to government economic policies, economic growth to create jobs. Some people say economic sanctions don’t work. It works over a long period of time. Its immediate effect seems so insignificant that it is not noticed. In time when you start importing substitutes from any country willing to sell it under the table at a higher price, that is where your unusually high inflation comes. Inflation affects ordinary people with limited income. After so many years, the squeeze of the overall economy and less available cash to buy goods and services by the citizens become noticeably apparent. Another economic problem is Iran’s political and economic isolation. Under the suspicion of creating nuclear weapon, outlandish statement on Holocaust, creating antagonistic environment for Westerners, has prevented foreign and domestic investments on buildings, financial institutions, factories, manufacturing and industries that will create jobs. And lastly, with finances used unwisely such as giving money and equipments to South American Countries who are anti-American to buy their friendship. Money spent to support Hamas and Hezbollah to spite Israel. Large sum used to beef up military, missile program, nuclear program, it’s a wonder anything is left for people to live on. What is left is skimmed at the top for the elites of the government and military, the crumbs aren’t enough to create jobs for every day people to feed their families. Therefore, most Iranians of the working class, which is the majority, live a subsistent life, struggling daily to survive. This disparity in distribution of wealth has created the poverty in a nation that is rich in both human and material resources. This is one of the elements of a revolution…despair in darkness of poverty.

The main cause of the French Revolution in 1789-99, was lack of sufficient amount of bread to go around to everyone and its high price. The other was the insensitivity of the two upper classes, the Clerics who owned majority of the land that controlled everyone’s life. The other was the nobility with feudal privileges, in addition to Louis XVI, the king. His extravagant life style, overspending the treasury. Then it was the Wars. His predecessor had engaged on 7 year wars, then he supported the American Revolution, causing a huge deficit and debt for the Country. The peoples resentment toward their lavish lifestyle along with aspiration for enlightenment ideas such as freedom of religion, and liberty of expression and Rights for all. Suppression of the people who dared to complain or steal out of necessity, filled the prisons in filthy inhumane conditions (les miserable) and finally the Kings failure to address peoples issues led to a Revolution. Does any of this sound familiar?

We have been reading about the turmoil in Iran in recent weeks. We can not enumerate all the mishaps. But a few here may set the tone for the course of events to come. Unquestionably the power struggle between the Ayatollah Khamenehi(KH) and Ahmadinejad(AH) is on. KH issues an order to AH to get rid of his VP. - he ignores it for six days. KH releases a text of the letter to the State TV, read to the public. He still sits on it another day until VP says maybe he should resign. Which immediately he is put up as Chief of Staff. In U.S., we call this giving somebody the finger. Many clerics at the top have spoken openly in their effort to inform the Ayatollah that the present uprising is not due to the agitation of foreigners, but about the questionable election. But his poor judgment has guided him to use of force. The death of the three in prison has received considerable publicity which led to the closing of the facility. They were beaten to a pulp and the warden says they died from Meningitis. Don’t they have a coroner to do an autopsy even if he works for the State? Now they have been going with this kangaroo court, accusing over a hundred people of conspiring a “velvet revolution”, which with all confessions under duress, it hasn’t gotten anywhere except bringing more contempt from more Iranians with influence against the government. I believe that Ahmadinejad is behind it all and not the Ayatollah. Although Ayatollah is in charge of all military forces, judiciary and other departments, for his position and the clerics, he had to go along with the election results and all that is going on. The Tail is wagging the Dog. Meanwhile as the economy is sinking, Ahmadinejad is doing a good job of making more powerful enemies by shaking up the Intelligence Service. He is reducing the clerics and it remains to be seen how far he can get with his arrogance. Its all going as a revolution should. Pasdaran and the Mullahs have a common goal that is to stay in power. But now Ahmadinejad’s confidence is built up enough to push his competition aside little by little. And the competition is feeling it. More and more mullahs are speaking out against the ways of the republic and asking for change.



In conclusion, there are two elements lacking for this to turn into an all out revolution at this time. First, omnipresence of a strong leader that represents what we consider a true republic or Democracy. The so called present opposition leaders are remnants of the past Islamic Republics Government, and only represent a shift to the center. Until emergence of such leader, the democratic movement is a horseman without a head. It can only follow the reformist. Second, a violent revolution requires a blinding passion to die for your cause. Re-read my opening introduction, we haven’t gotten there yet. Lastly, a revolution in practicality is an evolution in process. Now the rest of the story on the French Revolution. The Estate General was organized by three factions: Clergy, Nobility, and The Rest. During the 10 year span each knocked the other off resulting in 250,000 lives once, 117000 lives another time and many more in between. When Robespierre, a revolutionary took over, The “Reign of Terror” began under the “Committee of Public Safety” (Wasn’t that a misnomer?). 16,594 went under the guillotine after accusation of counter-revolutionary activity. Under his revolutionary Dictatorship, over time, as many as 40,000 people died by execution or in prison without trial or waiting to be tried. The point is that in the process of each event, they re-wrote the constitution and a step closer to that elusive true Republic. At the end comes the final element of revolution, “passion to die”.

We must not under-estimate the significance of recent events which is the apparent fracture pervading the core solidarity that existed between the Mullahs, military and Pasdaran. The scandalous events of the prison and prisoners, the watchful eyes of the World has had the effect to make them refrain from open attack on the people. A sense of insecurity with the realization that there is real threat to further existence of this government. Ali Jafari, head of Pasdaran now says their job is to defend the revolution from within. Ahmadinejad is so drunk with the feeling of power, speaks of world wide ambition and sees himself as a world leader. Those who feel threatened by Iran are campaigning for its destruction and the IRI is doing the job of setting up Iran for the kill with the nuclear issue, its Achilles Heel; a future subject.


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Good anaylysis and thanks

by DM on

Good anaylysis and thanks for pointing out the Bahman Baktiari article. Here's a direct link to it for those who are interested: