‘This Iranian Form of Theocracy Has Failed’

In a SPIEGEL interview, Iranian theologian and philosopher Mohsen Kadivar discusses Tehran’s path towards a military dictatorship, how the country’s religious leaders abuse Islam and opportunities for reform.

SPIEGEL: Ayatollah Kadivar, we are meeting you here at Duke University in the US State of North Carolina, 7,500 miles away from your home. Are you not needed more urgently in Iran now?



The Fatima mosque: “Among the grand ayatollahs in Qum, the resentment towards Ahmadinejad’s arrogance is growing.”

Kadivar: Believe me, in these dramatic hours I would much rather be in my homeland. Within the next two weeks, the future of Iran will be decided. Almost all my friends, 95 percent of them, are now in prison; and I am barely able to contact my family, the phones are almost dead.

SPIEGEL: You are said to be the co-author of the most recent declarations of opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi.

Kadivar: That is not right. Although I enjoyed his statements, they are not mine. I published my declarations separately, although I support Mousavi strongly. We have found means to communicate with each other. Via the Internet and via third parties, I am in co…

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