Download E-books The Ayatollah Begs to Differ: The Paradox of Modern Iran PDF

By Hooman Majd

A Los Angeles Times and Economist top e-book of the YearWith a brand new PrefaceThe grandson of an eminent ayatollah and the son of an Iranian diplomat, journalist Hooman Majd is uniquely certified to provide an explanation for modern Iran's advanced and misunderstood tradition to Western readers.The Ayatollah Begs to Differ offers an intimate examine a paradoxical kingdom that's either deeply non secular and hugely cosmopolitan, authoritarian but expert by way of a background of democratic and reformist traditions. Majd deals an insightful travel of Iranian tradition, introducing attention-grabbing characters from all walks of lifestyles, together with zealous executive officers, tricky girl cab drivers, and open-minded, reformist ayatollahs. it truly is an Iran that would shock readers and problem Western stereotypes.In his new preface, Majd discusses the Iranian temper in the course of and after the June 2009 presidential election which trigger the most important road protests because the revolution that introduced the ayatollahs to energy.

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That is Iran for you-Islamic democracy, in all of its wonderful contradictions. Mir Hossein Mousavi, Iranians suggestion, posed no such danger to the conservatives-the landlords, let's name them-but his possibilities of profitable were not precisely solid, at the same time lately as six weeks sooner than the election. "If the turnout is within the twenty- 5 million variety, we are going to be visitors of Mr. Ahmadinej ad's for an additional 4 years. " That was once Sadeq Kharrazi, former Iran i an envoy to Paris, deputy international minister, member of the nuclear negotiating workforce unde r Khatami, and one of many extra influential reformists who additionally has shut ties to the superb chief, conversing on the finish of April. It used to be one other late-night s alon at his condo, just like the different salons I describe, jam-packed with pictures of him- xiii P R E F A C E TO T H E A N C H O R B O O okay S E D I T I O N self with Ayatollah Khamenei. "Ahmadinej advert has ten to 12 million votes," he s relief, a bunch echoed by way of digital ly every body I spoke to in Tehran then; in Yazd, Esfahan, and Qom, too, " and he will win if the turnout is low:' He wasn't being pessimistic-just life like. The Mousavi campaign's early method, considered one of getting out the vote to counter Ahmadinejad's reliable base, raised no eyebrows, however it b egan to pay dividends , and a fever for the democratic approach began to af­ flict many up-till-then apathetic Iranians. "If the bulk does not vote, the minority rules," proclaimed one billboard, way more poetically in Persian, that I observed all over the place Tehran on the finish of might. Ayatollah Raf­ sanjani, referred to as the second one strongest guy in Iran, had p relief for that one, his picture subsequent to the phrases. If the fever h eld, there will be adequate votes to strength a second-round runoff Mousavi used to be going to win any runo ff, and win b ig. Ahmadinejad may have his ten to 12 million, yet he could not probably defeat Mousavi if Mehdi Karroubi's and Mohsen Rezai's supporters (the different competition applicants within the race) coalesced aroun d him, too. It wasn't as though Ahmad inej advert s ' crusade did not be aware of this. Their technique from the beginning had b een to win outright within the first around (and dicted his Kahyan, apparently prescient, pre­ g i n of victory to inside some degree or two), yet his cam­ m ar p a ign was once an e m i c in comparison to Mousavi's, which grew enhanced through the r best friend, with the ever renowned Khatami entrance and heart a lot o f the time. I nearly went with Khatami to Ahvaz, on may well 30, whe n the aircraft he was once to have stuck b ack to Tehran was once came across to have a bomb aboard. The l an dlords were not whispering anymore. This used to be shaping as much as be an epi c conflict among them and the reformers, one they h advert by no means rather heavily fought prior to; among those that be lieved Iran may still eventually flow into its post-revolutionary part and those that insisted it stay without end a revolution ary country. "If it truly is over thirty million;' we win, Khatami had stated to me in mid-May, announc­ ing what the turnout needed to be, yet nonetheless hesitant to claim that the bat­ tle will be gained.

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