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Islamic Republic of Iran

The Obama Administration Gambled On Tehran's Moderation -- And Failed

Saeed Ghasseminejad | Posted 07.18.2016 | World
Saeed Ghasseminejad

Time and again, Khamenei has modified Iran's political system to strengthen his own power. In theory, he welcomes the public's participation in elections. In practice, he manipulates the system to forestall any effort at substantive change.

Volleyball in Iran: A litmus test for women's rights

James Dorsey | Posted 06.24.2016 | Sports
James Dorsey

By James M. Dorsey An international volleyball tournament in the Iranian capital has thrown into sharp relief a debate in international sporting asso...

Iran's Baha'i Problem

Payam Akhavan | Posted 05.24.2016 | World
Payam Akhavan

The Islamic Republic of Iran is facing a big problem. As a matter of fact, the problem is so big that the Iranian leadership and State media cannot stop talking about it.

Iranians Voted for Engagement Twice: Now It's the West's Turn

Kourosh Ziabari | Posted 05.09.2016 | World
Kourosh Ziabari

The political behavior of Iranian people is not always easily predictable or discernable. Even though there are hints as to the reasons why they voted...

Women: A Benchmark of Saudi and Iranian Reform

James Dorsey | Posted 04.27.2016 | World
James Dorsey

With Saudi Arabia announcing plans for a major restructuring of the kingdom's economy and Iran gearing up to become a regional hegemon, women's sports is emerging as a benchmark of reform, and one that so far is less than promising.

Obama in the Gulf: Opportunity in Troubled Relations

James Dorsey | Posted 04.18.2016 | World
James Dorsey

President Barak Obama has a challenge and an opportunity when he meets this week first with Saudi King Salman and then with the leaders of the six Gulf states. His challenge is to manage increasingly fundamentally diverging policy differences.

Interview: Saudi Arabia and Lebanon Tensions Over Foreign Policy

Halim Shebaya | Posted 02.29.2016 | World
Halim Shebaya

Saudi Arabia decided to halt a 4 billion US dollars grant to the Lebanese Armed Forces and the Internal Security Forces. And Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and the UAE have urged their citizens to leave Lebanon or avoid traveling there.

Meeting the Tea Party in Tehran

Elizabeth Nicholas | Posted 02.25.2016 | World
Elizabeth Nicholas

It wouldn't be an Iranian election without an American interjection. As Iranians head to the polls on Friday for parliamentary elections, three Republican congressmen have taken it upon themselves to seek visas from Iran to serve as election monitors.

Saudi Arabia's Syria Strategy: Rewriting the Middle East's Political Map

James Dorsey | Posted 02.12.2016 | World
James Dorsey

By James M. Dorsey Saudi Arabia has raised the ante in its battle with Iran by publicly committing to send ground troops to Syria. This latest move b...

A litmus test for Iran on the world stage: sports and air transport

James Dorsey | Posted 02.08.2016 | Sports
James Dorsey

Sports and air transport are likely to serve as indicators of whether Iran has the flexibility to become a major node in an increasingly globalized world. At the core of Iranian efforts to become a global sports and airline hub will be its willingness to relax strict gender segregation, dress codes and its ban on alcohol.

Iran and Britain: Bracing for a New Era of Redefined Relations

Kourosh Ziabari | Posted 02.05.2016 | World
Kourosh Ziabari

With prudence and a serious commitment to settle one of the most tedious diplomatic disputes of the post-Cold War era through negotiation and logic, Iran demonstrated that it's not a pariah state and deserves respect.

China & the Middle East: Tilting Towards Iran?

James Dorsey | Posted 01.28.2016 | World
James Dorsey

President Xi Jinping's visit to the Middle East, the first by a Chinese leader in seven years, saw the signing of billions of dollars' worth of agreements with Saudi Arabia and Egypt and a ten-fold expansion of trade with Iran over the next ten years.

Will President Rouhani meet genuine human rights advocates halfway?

Massoud Khodabandeh | Posted 01.27.2016 | Politics
Massoud Khodabandeh

President Rouhani's visit to Europe this week is a reminder of how much has changed since last July. But Iran's eventual rehabilitation into the international community is by no means a done deal.

The Middle East: China Venturing Into the Maelstrom

James Dorsey | Posted 01.19.2016 | World
James Dorsey

CHINESE PRESIDENT Xi Jingping has effectively acknowledged that increasingly China will be unable to remain aloof to multiple crises in the Middle Eas...

A Blame Game: The Worst Thing Iran and Saudi Arabia Can Instigate

Kourosh Ziabari | Posted 01.12.2016 | World
Kourosh Ziabari

To exchange accusations and call each other the root cause of the chaos that plagues the Middle East is to deflect responsibility for the despair that is inundating the crisis-stricken region.

Soccer highlights domestic drivers in Saudi-Iranian dispute

James Dorsey | Posted 01.04.2016 | Sports
James Dorsey

By James M. Dorsey Saudi Arabia and Iran, highlighting the domestic drivers of mounting tension that threatens to deepen and complicate sectarian and...

Soccer: Iranian Moderates and Hardliners Lock Horns on the Pitch

James Dorsey | Posted 12.29.2015 | Sports
James Dorsey

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani suffered in the run-up to crucial elections in early 2016 what amounted to at least a symbolic defeat when state-run television banned Iran's most popular soccer program from running an interview with his foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, on soccer and politics.

How to Stand up for Your Muslim Friends

Manal Omar | Posted 12.10.2015 | Politics
Manal Omar

I am scared here at home. I have been on the receiving end of hateful glares, shoving on the sidewalks, and hateful phrases yelled at me. The fear I face here at home has made me decide not to ride the metro since the Paris attacks. I find myself using my hostile environment training for Baghdad and Benghazi here at home.

Update on Ali Moezi, a Political Prisoner Facing Imminent Threat

Sara Hassani | Posted 11.10.2015 | World
Sara Hassani

Ali Moezi is an ailing a political prisoner. He suffers from cancer, kidney disease and several other afflictions. Arrested while undergoing cancer treatment, he has since been denied access to medical care by the Iranian judiciary.

Death by Self-Defense, Remembering Reyhaneh Jabbari

Sara Hassani | Posted 11.04.2015 | Women
Sara Hassani

In a world where women already shoulder a disproportionate burden of proof, most egregiously as it relates to sexual assault and rape, Iranian women are forced to reckon with an almost impossible circumstance.

Saudi Arabia and al-Qaeda Unite in Yemen

Giorgio Cafiero | Posted 09.24.2015 | World
Giorgio Cafiero

In viewing Yemen as an important battleground in the grander struggle against Iran's expanding regional influence, Saudi Arabia has united with a variety of Yemeni Sunni factions in an effort to crush the Houthi insurgency.

Can Iran's Rulers Still Use Enemies Abroad to Rally a Nation?

The Conversation US | Posted 09.17.2015 | Politics
The Conversation US

The rulers of the Islamic Republic of Iran have routinely used external conflicts to divert public attention from domestic problems, deflect attacks, promote national cohesion and repress their opponents. Much of the tension between Iran and the U.S. can be seen in this light.

The Iran Deal: Power to the People

Holly Dagres | Posted 09.14.2015 | World
Holly Dagres

Having an Iran deal opens the floodgates of economic opportunity, breaths new life into the middle class, and raises the standard of living, which are all vehicles of change. With the passing of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the deal has done a lot more for positive transformation in Iran than sanctions ever could.

Iran Exposes the Myth of GCC Unity

Daniel Wagner | Posted 09.10.2015 | World
Daniel Wagner

If GCC officials slowly pivot toward the perception that their long-term interests reside in an improved relationship toward Iran, such a strategic shift would be seen in Riyadh as an erosion of GCC unity against an emboldened Iran.

The Cuban Missile Crisis Explains Why Iran Won't Go to War With Israel

Harvey Simon | Posted 09.09.2015 | Politics
Harvey Simon

Before advocating war with Iran to keep it from getting nuclear weapons, proliferation opponents have a responsibility to explain why these risks cannot be mitigated and defend their assumption that deterrence does not apply in the Middle East.