Khamenei’s support base is even smaller than Assad’s, a masterpiece finds

Today’s best analysis comes from the co-authors of “The Dictator’s Handbook” and appears in Foreign Policy. The “must read” focuses primarily on Assad but 90 percent of what it says applies to Iran as well for reasons that will become apparent as you read.

When focusing on Iran, the authors point out Khamenei’s base of support in Iran is substantially smaller than Assad’s in Syria (It continues to shrink of course). They also explain how important assistance from three countries–Iran, Iraq and Venezuela–has been in keeping Assad in power and his thugs well financed. The Syrian people know they “owe” Iran’s mullahs and their Iraqi puppet once Assad is gone.

The analysis of how such regimes survive and what determines the point at which dictators opt for reform over oppression is first rate and mirrors what some posters have written here: Khamenei and his arch-conservative mullahs will never let up so long as there is a penny in the piggy jar to be stolen. If he did so before that point, Khamenei would be ousted or killed by his security force generals, despite all their fervent pledges of loyalty for now while they enjoy all the perks. The only way to avoid that is to invite them all to a nice dinner, as the Sultans did for Janissary leaders.

It’s too bad Iranians and Syrians lack a decent man like Gorbachev who chose to resign with grace rather than spill blood. The Living Joke Iranians have instead one is a “holy man” and moral exemplar who claims to enjoy a direct phone line to Allah. That is what make Iran’s situation especially bitter– almost a black comedy. Such leaders inflict any suffering on their people so long as they can stuff their faces/ They fully deserve to end up like Mussolini, Saddam and Khadaffi.

Assessing AssadThe Syrian leader isn’t crazy. He’s just doing whatever it takes to survive.…

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