The main purpose of Ayatollah Khamenei's recent call to arm the Palestinians is to bring the West Bank under the control of Hamas and Islamic Jihad and do away with the more moderate PLO. His attempt to exploit the unimaginable suffering of the Palestinians in Gaza is a reflection of his doctrine of 'victory through terrorization' (al-nasro-belrob). From my point of view, this is the same policy that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been pursuing by inflicting such horror on the people of Gaza.
Ayatollah Khomeini and Abollhassan Bani-Sadr. Unlike 35 years ago when Iran had only a minority of democratic elites, today we have a large and educated middle class to support and defend separation of religion and state, a constituency large and robust enough to fill the kind of vacuum we had in 1979 that enabled the clergy to take over.