Interview – Surge in anti-American hostility in Iran is setback for jailed US reporter

IranPolitik co-founder and managing editor Farzan Sabet recently conducted an interview on the anti-“infiltration” campaign in Iran with the Christian Science Monitor: “Expectations were high that clinching a deal “would automatically enhance Mr. Rouhani’s position to expand social and political freedoms in Iran and resolve other issues in the US-Iran relationship,” says Farzan Sabet, managing…



Ayatollah Khamenei: “Negotiations with America are banned”

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has banned the Islamic Republic from negotiating with the United States. In September 2013, Ayatollah Khamenei gave his consent to nuclear negotiations between Iran and the United States aimed at reaching a final accord, citing the precedence in the history of Shi’a Islam of showing “heroic flexibility” under the…



Khamenei v Rouhani: Consensus gives way to discord after the Iran deal

Nuclear negotiations were one of the few areas of broad consensus among the political elite of the Islamic Republic of Iran. With the nuclear deal in hand, however, underlying tension between moderate and conservative currents in Iran has been increasingly coming to the fore. This tension has manifested in a number of ways, for example…



Ayatollah Khamenei backs the Guardian Council in its dispute with Rouhani

In a speech on Wednesday 09 September 2015, Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei discussed the the prospects of negotiations on other issues with the United States and also injected himself into a dispute between Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and senior conservative politicians, potentially setting the tone of Iran’s foreign policy and domestic politics for…



The IRGC’s Jafari warns of enemy-backed parties in the mold of new Iranian political organizations

In a press conference on Tuesday 01 September 2015, Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) commander Majour-General Mohammad-Ali “Aziz” Jafari followed in the footsteps of Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei in warning against a multifaceted American attempt to penetrate Iran in the post-deal era. On Iran’s role in Syria He presented the IRGC as a…



U.S.–Iranian Relations after the Nuclear Deal: From Détente to Rapprochement?

IranPolitik co-founder and managing editor Farzan Sabet recently wrote an article about U.S.-Iranian relations after the nuclear deal in War on the Rocks: “Now that a nuclear deal has been negotiated and is likely to be implemented, what’s next for Iranian President Hassan Rouhani’s foreign policy? His “World Against Violence and Extremism” (WAVE) initiative may give…



Rouhani call for greater electoral plurality may presage rising post-deal domestic tensions

Hassan Rouhani has called for the Council of Guardians to take a supervisory rather than executive role in elections. But this may have more to do with the Iranian president’s fears of disqualification of his allies than a desire for greater electoral plurality. In a speech on Wednesday 19 August 2015, Hassan Rouhani called for…



After the nuclear agreement, Iran’s supreme leader warns against American penetration

In a speech yesterday Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei called for an end to Sunni-Shi’a conflict in the Middle East, laying these tensions at the feet of the United States. He also stated his staunch opposition to any move toward the Americans, political, economic, cultural, or otherwise. During a meeting with members of Ahl…



Mehdi goes to Evin: Hashemi-Rafsanjani under pressure in lead up to potential 2016 election run

Mehdi Hashemi has surrendered himself to Evin prison to serve a sentence on political and economic charges. Mehdi’s imprisonment may have been a preemptive strike against Ayatollah Ali-Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani’s participation in the upcoming 2016 elections and highlights this once mighty figures continued political decline. Mehdi goes to prison Iranians awoke on 09 August 2015 to…



Banning of “He Who Said No” and the undermining of Iranian culture

The withdrawal of Ahmad-Reza Darvish’s “He Who Said No”, an acclaimed film about revered Shi’a figure Imam Hossein, from Iranian cinemas this past week highlights how censorship in Iran continues to be an obstacle to the indigenous production of culture. This past week director Ahmad-Reza Darvish’s award winning film Rooz-e Rastakhiz (entitled “He Who Said…