Is Rafsanjani on His Way to Become The Next Supreme Religious Leader?

by Piyalechi

As the pundits, including myself, made jokes and remarks and took jabs at Rafsanjani for his removal from the Council of Experts, a serious matter may have gone unnoticed. The matter of him becoming the next Vali-e-Faqih.

To illustrate my point, I invite you to consider the following:

- He and Mahdavi Kani are very close and have known each other for a long time. Mahdavi Kani is now the current  head of the Council of Experts whose job is appointment of a Supreme Religious Leader.

- Experience wise and besides being perhaps the closest aide and adviser to Khomeini, the founder of IR when he was alive, Rafsanjani has served in almost every major leadership position in the Islamic Republic.

- Khamenei is hated, sick, and facing a serious turmoil. A turmoil which intensified and gave birth to his current nightmare - the Green Movement - with his endorsement of Ahmadinejad’s re-election. With Khamenei gone, if and when it happens, Mahdavi Kani will most probably nominate Rafsanjani for his replacement.

- Internationally, Rafsanjani is called a “pragmatic.” If he becomes the man, he can simply trump his nemesis, Ahmadinejad, and put Mousavi in his place. Then a “serious” dialogue with Obama and the west can begin. 

Now that I look at it, his and Mousavi’s persistent support of the Islamic Republic's constitution and the concept of Velayat-e-Faqih makes a lot of sense!

The only major obstacle though, in his way to become the Supreme Religious Leader, could be the unwritten rule of VF being a Seyyed, Which he is not.


more from Piyalechi

Rafsanjani "DID NOT RUN" for the head of khobregaan

by Mehrban on

Many posts and articles yesterday implied that Rafsanjani was voted out.  Hamsadeh Ghadimi, thanks for bringing that up, HE DID NOT RUN.  The efforts to show the event in a different light may have been blatant but it did have many of us (myself included) confused! 

Ari Siletz

Piyalechi, HG

by Ari Siletz on

Analyst of the Year Award ( Kalak Shenaas e Talaai ) to both of you if events end up resembling what you describe. 


مملکتی که حساب کتاب نداره، هیچ معجزه ای بعید نیست


مملکتی که حساب کتاب نداره، هیچ معجزه ای بعید نیست. مثال:
اگه یه نفر (یا دو نفر) بتونن بدون رساله آیت الٌئه بشن، بعید نیست که یهو یک شجره نامه گم شده حضرات رو سیٌد کنه.


Hamsade Jaan

by Piyalechi on

Your scenario is totally plausible and possible, too.



hamsade ghadimi


by hamsade ghadimi on

although i alluded to the possibility of rafi becoming rahbar in a comment (on another thread) yesterday, i attach a low probability on that scenario.  before i explain, a few comments on your blog:

- rafi was not removed from his position but rather did not nominate himself to keep his position for another term.  therefore, he decided not to run.  that's much different than being removed from a position.

- the next rahbar will be vetted by the entire khobregan (khoftegan) council and not just by one man, kani, as you implicated.

- the u.s. politicians, in their own self interest (and against the interest of iranian people) had called rafi a "pragmatic conservative."  that means even though he's as bad as all the other mullahs, he likes to do business with the rest of the world.  another way of saying "just act like a good politician, don't write essays on holocaust and israel and there won't be any sanctions on your regime.  screw the iranian people, let's do business."

now why there's a low probability that he will be elected.  his popularity is very low in iran whether on the hardcore baseej, the clergy (not an intellectual), the sepah (ahmadi's people), or the public.  everyone knows he's a billionaire and has a corrupt family.  in these sensitive times, it's only wise to have someone up there that does not have such an extensive (negative) history.  it would be almost the kiss of death for velayat faghih to select someone like him that does not have the backing of almost all of the conservatives and all of the sepah.

my theory on why he did not run to stay in his position is that the vf wants him and his dear daughter to act as players of the faux opposition.  that's why they removed him from the establishment.  another reason, i think that khamenei will be dead in a few months from natural causes and they don't want the conservatives feel that rafi had a hand in picking the rahbar.  rafi will stay behind the scenes.  he's probably having khorest karafs with mousavi, karoubi, khatami and khamenei as we speak.  followed by taryak, of course.


Is Rafsanjani on His Way to Become The Next Supreme Religious Le

by Bavafa on

Over Khamenie dead body!!!!


that would be the only possible way.


Maryam Hojjat

I am with you too

by Maryam Hojjat on

I am not surprsed either if this happens.  Rafsanjni being pragmatic Fish is possible.

Anahid Hojjati

Dear Pialechi, I will not be surprised at all if this happens

by Anahid Hojjati on

What you write is possible especially if demonstrations continue and regime realizes that by having Rafsanjani as VF, IRI can continue. Then AN will be gone too and Moussavi and karroubi will be once again "dar sahneh". But this will happen only if people put more pressure on regime. Then if Rafsanjani is VF and Moussavi or someone "better" than AN president, Question is what steps will they take? Depending on the steps that they will take, people may go along with this or not.


It make sence...

by P_T_B_A on

to me too.  By withdrawing his nomination for the head of the Council of Experts in favor of Kani, he made sure that this body would not fall in the hands of Mesbah-Janati gang and that was a great move.  As much as I hate IRI, I'd rather see him in charge than the current thugs.  Thanks you for your well thought analysis.