For Mousavi: Three Roads Ahead
asharq alawsat / Amir Taheri

"Where do we go from here?" This must be the question that Mir Hossein Mousavi Khameneh, the defeated candidate in Iran's presidential election, must be asking himself. Finding an answer will not be easy. From the start of his candidacy, the former prime minister boxed himself in a minimalist position that leaves little room for manoeuvre. He offered no clear programme beyond casting himself as the anti-Ahmadinejad candidate. Even those of his supporters who gave him the "reformist" label were unable to say exactly what it was that he wanted to reform and how. With the election over, Mousavi adopted another minimalist position by asking first for a recount of the votes and then for a complete re-run. He got neither. All that the government was prepared to offer was a random recount of 10 per cent of the ballot boxes. However, that, too, ended in more humiliation for Mousavi. The recount reduced his share of the votes and increased that of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Mousavi's strategy is hard to understand.

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