How street protests across Middle East threaten Iran’s power

Iran can impose its will now only by massive violence. That might still work for the moment. And the regime has revolution-proofed itself by the construction of an interlocking system of praetorian guards. But the community of true believers is shrinking. Just look at religious observance inside Iran. It’s collapsed. And any real moral authority that the revolution might once have had is gone.

“Syria was a massive turning point. Iraq is another now. And we’re beginning to see protesters talk to each other across national boundaries. It’s a process of erosion. The last true believers are probably those on the European left who think Iran is a bastion against US neo-liberal orientalist-inflected neo-colonialism. That says it all.

“Iran has become normalised – just another repressive Middle Eastern state ruled by greedy self-serving elites who can’t even imagine let alone countenance what peaceful political evolution would look like.”