Iran: Regime intentions revealed - What's next?
Huffington Post / Mark Fowler

And given the momentum this effort is generating, it appears that the insider's insider, Ayatollah Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, is among those who supports this effort, perhaps not surprising after being reminded that even he is vulnerable to being targeted by hardliners (recall the temporary detention of his children)--a very rude awakening indeed. His message at yesterday's Friday prayers, in which he failed to side fully and explicitly with the leadership, further reveals his concern over recent events and his intention to remain a force behind, and perhaps within, the opposition camp. Idealists might consider that opposition leaders truly believe the time has come for change. Cynics, on the other hand, would make the case that they merely wish to preserve their wealth and privileged positions. Either way, the challenge to the Islamic Republic as we know it is real. The regime is already reacting by stressing that permits are required for the formation of any such political "front"--a sure sign of concern. Let the games begin! It will be very interesting to see how this plays out.As for "what's next" in terms of engagement with the U.S., as I noted in my last posting, the Iranian leadership needs to consider the risks versus gains of such a move--both of which are considerable. The situation is far more complicated due to recent events, but the overall stakes remain the same. And given the changed landscape they are facing, deciding not to decide m... >>>

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