By Ray Takeyh
Progressive guards chanting opposed to the good devil, Bush fulminating opposed to the Axis of Evil, Iranian help for Hezbollah, and President Ahmadinejad blaming the U.S. for the world's ills--the endless disagreement indicates an intractable divide among Iran and the West. yet as Ray Takeyh indicates during this available and authoritative background of Iran's kinfolk with the area because the revolution, at the back of the well-known personalities and extremist slogans is a kingdom that's way more pragmatic--and complex--than many within the West were resulted in think. Takeyh explodes lots of our simplistic myths of Iran as an intransigently Islamist foe of the West. He indicates that 3 robust forces--Islamism, pragmatism, and nice energy pretensions--war opposed to each other in Iran, and that Iran's frequently paradoxical regulations are in fact a sequence of compromises among the hardliners and the moderates, usually with wild oscillations among pragmatism and ideological dogmatism. The U.S.'s activity, Takeyh argues, is to discover options that tackle Iran's objectionable habit with no demonizing this key participant in an more and more important and unstable quarter. up-to-date with an afterword that covers the momentous protests following the 2009 Iranian elections, Guardians of the Revolution will stand because the commonplace paintings in this controversial--and central--actor in global politics for future years. Praise for the hardcover: ''Superb...anyone wishing to appreciate why restored American-Iranian ties are so elusive, but additionally so severe, may still flip to this crucial paintings, a riveting and always insightful research of innovative Iran and its nonetheless stricken position within the world.'' --New York Times ''[An] very good background of Iran's overseas and protection guidelines within the 3 many years because the revolution.... A hugely winning balancing act among breadth and depth.... a first class book.'' --Middle East Journal ''An very good technique to take the degree of progressive Iran this day is to learn this updated, well-researched, and perceptive heritage of its overseas coverage on the grounds that 1979.'' --Foreign Affairs
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Additional info for Guardians of the Revolution: Iran and the World in the Age of the Ayatollahs
This would be a stark contrast to his successor, Ali Khamenei. Once in power, all revolutionary regimes deviate from their declared precepts, moderate their objectives, and even adjust to the prevailing order. In many ways, Iran’s theocratic state was no different, as it could not sustain its hostility to both superpowers and its commitment to the overthrow of its neighbors. Khomeini’s ideological contentions still had to exist in an international arena dominated by the United States and a political economy that made Iran vulnerable to economic pressure.
As we have seen, Khomeini’s theological innovations had long been deprecated by the esteemed men of religion. The notion of vilayat-i faqih was seen by many traditionalists as a superﬁcial religious warrant for the establishment of a dictatorship. ”68 The most strenuous challenge to Khomeini’s rule, however, came from Grand Ayatollah Shari’atmadari, who commanded strong support in the restive Azerbaijan area. Shari’atmadari favored a greater degree 30 the revolutionary years of freedom and consistently invoked terms such as “nationalism” and “democratic sovereignty,” which were anathema to Khomeini.
His comments are of sufﬁcient importance to be quoted at length: “The night of the embassy’s occupation I contacted Ahmad and asked him what is happening? Initially he just laughed and would not answer. I asked him did you know about this? He laughed. ”12 Mahdavi-Kani’s pointed questions to Ahmad about his knowledge of the event only elicited bemused laughter, suggesting a prior understanding. Moreover, it is hard to believe that Ayatollah Muhammad Musavi Khu’ini’ha, the students’ spiritual leader, did not consult with Khomeini.