Iran’s Power Struggle
The New York Times / MUHAMMAD SAHIMI
30-Apr-2009 (22 comments)

Ms. Saberi’s predicament shows the significance of any improvement in relations between Iran and the United States. Such improvements will ultimately result in a more open and democratic Iran, where the rule of law will be supreme and the gross violations of human rights that have become widespread under Mr. Ahmadinejad’s government will stop. This would have great impact on the quest for peace in the Middle East.


Fantasy essay

by Fred on

What Islamists mean by democratic Iran through their horsey's mouth courtesy of YouTube



Kaveh Nouraee

OK, before happy hour starts...

by Kaveh Nouraee on

Like I said, I don't doubt his sincerity. I will give him the benefit of the doubt and say he has all the right intentions. (Remember, I told you I like the guy. He's smooth in that Billy Dee Williams sort of way...and i mean that as a compliment.)

You're right, the IRI has no interest in improving things. None whatsoever. But The First Dude is risking showing his hand too early in this game of global poker. These douchebags in Tehran will exploit anything they perceive as a weakness, and Obama's display of warmth, as genuine as we both agree it to be, will be exploited big time if he's not careful.

Now, donde esta mi tequila, and vodka e man koja?

anonymous fish


by anonymous fish on

i think obama said that back in december... we've come a long way baby...LOL. 

seriously.  you know that as recently as yesterday, the federal reserve sees signs of the recession weakening and showing "modest improvements" in the economy.  slowly but surely.  it won't happen overnight and you know it!!! 

i've got mixed feelings about "failure".  part of me says we sorta deserve it and we need a serious wake up call.  i'm torn on governmental involvement.  i wish i could pick and choose who/what/when/where/why.  i admit to not knowing enough to make a declaration of fact. 

but.  this blog started with regard to obama's efforts to reconcile with iran.  on that, i will not retreat.  he simply is the best chance for any open dialog.  however, i am even more convinced today that such efforts, as wholeheartedly as they may be, will ultimately be rejected.  the IRI has no interest in improvement of relations. 

and who will suffer the most?  the innocent iranians IN iran.  not you.  not me.

Kaveh Nouraee

You disagree with my assertion about

by Kaveh Nouraee on

the Democrats in Congress, but the evidence supports it. It's nothing that I made up. Personally I wish it never happened.

Bush screwed up when it came to this WMD crap, and going into Iraq with no exit strategy. That's on him 110%. And yes, almost every photo makes him look like Alfred E. Neumann from Mad magazine, and he's about as eloquent a speaker as Junior Samples from Hee Haw.

As far as what you say is my pessimistic view that it isn't getting better, even Obama himself has said that things will worsen before any improvement will be seen. Now, had this been said by Bush, or McCain, or anyone else in the GOP, a lynch mob would be forming. "they're weak, they're just a bunch of cronies, blah blah blah". But if it comes from Obama, and its all good. I'm sorry, it just doesn't cut it for me.

I don't want to see this country fail, but I do want all of these spending policies to fail miserably. I want to see all of these efforts to socialize this country blow up in their faces. I want people to finally wake up and realize that government is not the answer but rather the problem.

And I want you to know that I'm not getting out of drinks.

So, there.  :-)

anonymous fish

and i agree that obama should be held to higher standards

by anonymous fish on

than were expected of bush.  i agree that he is accountable and i agree that we shouldn't rest on our laurels simply because he was elected.  i disagree with your continued assertation that the democrats are to blame for the failed economy.  i disagree with your stance that congress is the root of all evil.  i disagree that we have nothing to show since january 20th.  and i most emphatically disagree with your pessimistic view that it isn't going to get better!  i'd almost think you WANT him to fail simply to justify your dissatisfaction with a democrat congress.  however, that WOULD be cutting off your nose to spite your face and i rather think you're more vain than that....LOL.

or ... would it be you're simply hoping to get out of drinks?  :-0

Kaveh Nouraee


by Kaveh Nouraee on

Look at when these policies were starting to fail. It was after the Democrats took the majority in Congress during Bush's 2nd term. There was no financial crisis until 2006. And if Bush wasn't told by the Democrats to shove it up his ass when he pushed for reforms, we wouldn't be going through the same crap we are right now. The facts are there. It proves where the blame belongs.

I'm not saying that Bush was a genius. I'm not saying he was a great president. What I am saying is that he was a guy who was up against a Congress that went out of their way to undermine the administration because they had the strength in numbers to do so.

I don't think I'm the only person who sees through Obama. I know that there are many others that do. As to knowing more, I wouldn't call it that either. I call it knowing better. And it's not as much Obama as it is the Congress.

You said Bush said it, but Obama means it. That's exactly what I'm talking about. Everything he says is being soaked up like a sponge and taken at face value. Yes he was elected in a landslide. I accept that. It's fine with me. It's how the system works. And it's arguably the best system on earth. But it doesn't mean that "OK, we voted for him, he won, now we can go back to our lives and just let him handle everything." On the contrary.

I'm not pissed because it's a democratic White House and Congress. What bothers me is that government has spent over a trillion dollars since January 20th, and taken over parts of the private sector, with nothing to show for it.

Yeah, Obama is likable. I like him too. But that's not enough. Style over substance doesn't cut it.

anonymous fish

still somewhat exaggerated

by anonymous fish on

but i think i see the point.  and i won't deny it.  after 8 years of such incredibly failed policies, there probably IS a sense of "thank god".  i know i feel it.  i know my 80 year old parents feel it.  i know my 23 year old son feels it.  so do my friends and family who across the board represent a wide spectrum of educated, career and non-career, retired and still working, old and young, rich and poor.  we've gone from "axis of evil" to "happy norooz".  forget that bush might have said it Kaveh.  obama MEANS it.  and it's the best damn chance we've got for successful communication with iran.  why would i deny he has a following?  he was elected by a landslide.  hardly something to ignore or WANT to deny.  there was a reason for it.  please don't think you're the only educated person who "sees through" obama and knows so much more than those millions of people who put their faith in him.  you're pissed because it's a democrat president and congress.  so be it.  but i for one am tired about hearing about all the financial crisis' as if it happened yesterday and not over the last 8 years. 

now.  it's friday and i'm feeling almost human again.  i've got visions of margaritas on my mind as soon as i can get rid of the boss.  :-) 



by Hajminator on

When the Shah made his last apparition in the TV - to say that he understood what people wanted - most Iranians dropped their television even before the Shah’s speech just because they didn’t want to see his picture!

This binary vision of what we think is good and all the other things are bad had a cost... It’s amazing to see how we don’t learn from our mistakes and that people don’t change from even one iota of what they used to be.

Kaveh Nouraee


by Kaveh Nouraee on

I disagree. There are those who look upon Obama was some kind of "rock-star", a hero who can do no wrong. And that's dangerous.

Bush sent Nowruz greetings as well. I don't doubt the sincerity of either man when they wished Iranians a happy new year. But Obama did it and "whoooosh", it's the Second Coming.

I've said it before. I don't dislike the guy. His politics, yes. But it's foolish to deny that there is this tremendous following that is locked on his every word and move. One guy. It's scary.

There's a Congress that's able to force any piece of legislation down our throats, without debate, and no matter the consequences. And Obama has a TON of favors to repay to those people who got him elected.

Don't believe me? Well, as of this morning the United Auto Workers Union owns 59% of Chrysler and more than 33% of GM. All thanks to the way this auto "bailout" was crafted. So, now not only do they take money from worker's paychecks for union dues, but they also receive dividends.

Meanwhile 21,000 GM employees just from the Pontiac division are getting canned, and Pontiac dealers are going to have to reduce their staffs because "not everyone would really rather have a Buick". These are a lot of people who will be negatively affected. And in a few months, barring a miracle, Saturn employees will join them.

Yeah, that makes sense. GM gets blamed for not making fuel efficient cars but is forced to get rid of the division with the best fuel economy in their fleet. And they're keeping TWO divisions that offer pickups and SUVs.

Now with Chrysler going into Chapter 11, many of their dealers are going to be forced out too. That means more employees and their families. Chrysler Financial is going down the tubes, too. I know and worked with a lot of Chrysler people. Then there are the suppliers, vendors, and so on.

$787 billion dollars that was supposed to create jobs and stimulate the economy. Where is it? Factories are being shut down, yet the union that was supposed to protect them is getting wealthier. People who had jobs for the past 8 years don't anymore. Yet Bush was a total piece of shit and Obama is God.

And I also know that more likely than not, those auto workers probably voted Democrat too.

The cutting off of the nose to spite the face.....that's exactly what happened.

Kaveh Nouraee


by Kaveh Nouraee on

I know the term is being used to describe a supporter or apologist for the regime, and in fact there are some on this site who are very much so. I think by now my views of the regime and those who support or justify even one iota of it are quite clear.  :-)

anonymous fish

very informative... thank you.

by anonymous fish on

kaveh.  you're overstating VERY unfairly.  i hardly think anyone is under the misconception that obama is the be-all and end-all of peace with iran.  what he IS is the most positive effort of the last 8 years.  come on... don't let your anti-democraticness blind you to the obvious!  you know the saying... something about cutting off your nose to spite your face...:-))

mehrnaz... was i grumbling??? :-))



by Hajminator on

I’m really happy to hear it. I just saw by several times that it didn’t bother you when Iranians on this site were labeled as Islamists and … and you happily posted your comments in support of those label-makers, so my doubts raised that your name maybe as Iranian as your Dali’s avatar. But it seems that, no!


To Kaveh

by Tazeh be doran resideh (not verified) on

Don't you worry about Haji.

That sarcastic lady sees "Zion" in everybody and considers herself a head and shoulder above all Persians by throwing her broken French at everybody every chance she gets ... what a shallow gal ... lol

My advice to her would be to focus on her "vote" in the upcoming IR's dog and pony show.

Kaveh Nouraee

Reality sucks only for a few

by Kaveh Nouraee on

To "Reality sucks": The last sentence in your post is probably one of the most accurate, honest ones I've seen in a while. Actually, all of what you said is accurate, but the last part stands out as something that needs to be drilled into the thick skulls of those who think that everything is about to become sunshine and happiness between the U.S. and Iran now that Obama has arrived.

Hajminator, for the record, I don't play dress up. I am 100% Iranian, clear to the bone. I know that bothers some people around here, who think that being Iranian means that I should think the same way as they do, but that's their problem, not mine.


This was an opinion piece

by lawnmower (not verified) on

This was an opinion piece and by no means anything original was offered. These revelations have been known for quite sometimes.


Fantasy essay? Ebadi's partner a bad thing?

by KB on

Our resident "Prince of Darkness" AKA Fred has posted what seems to be a reasonable explanation of what is going on Iran and then writes "fantasy essay"??!! Amoo Fred, we know you do not like the regime, not many of us do, but this article is actually critical of the regime. I know, I know its not critical enough and we are not promoting Israel and all the Islamist lefty anti-semites and like minded people might read this and think we are a democracy now.

And as for Fara Rusta's comments, whats wrong with being Ebadi's partner, she is a human rights advocate and a good thing for reedom in Iran. What is your problem?


Thank you Fred!


Just as Irandokht pointed out :)  Anonymous Fish was grumbling in some thread that I never thank you and Mazloom for your services to Iran, so here I am, thank you for posting this excellent article by Prof Sahimi!



by Hajminator on

Thank you for posting this great article.

I might be wrong, but besides Farah Rusta (ex Zion ?), Kaveh Nouaree, Mehdi Mazloom, Farhad Kashani who are dressed up as more Persians than Persians. You are the only honourable JIUYS guy who says what you think is right and keep apparent your no-affiliation to Iran.

I wanted to thank you for your honesty and tirer mon chapeau.


Well they can be both right and wrong

by Reality sucks (not verified) on

We know of the isolated countries with no relationships with the U.S. usually having the most tyrannical and repressive governments e.g. Cuba, Iran, etc. but on the other hand you can find a lot of countries with tryannical and repressive governments which are closest allies of the U.S.

We must be under no illusion and accept the fact that opening of relationship with the U.S. for Iran does NOT necessarily translate into Iran going toward democracy and rule of law.


Thank you Fred aziz

by IRANdokht on

I was going to post this article but I see that you have done it and thanks Farah Rusta for pointing out that Dr Sahimi is Shirin Ebadi's promoter,  political partner and co-author in the US. 

That's great credentials as far as I am concerned.

Good article!

Maryam Hojjat

Interesting analysis!

by Maryam Hojjat on

must wait & see.

Farah Rusta

Ebadi's partner

by Farah Rusta on

What else can one expect from Sahimi, Shirin Ebadi's promoter,  political partner and co-author in the US.