Islamic Republic of Iran for Dummies

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One of the most dramatic changes in government in Iran’s history was seen with the 1979 Iranian Revolution where Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi was overthrown and replaced by Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.

Patriotic monarchy was replaced by an Islamic Republic based on the principle of rule by Islamic jurists, (or “Velayat-e faqih”), where clerics serve as head of state and in many powerful governmental roles.

A pro-Western, pro-American foreign policy was exchanged for one of “neither east nor west”, said to rest on the three “pillars” of mandatory veil (hijab) for women, and opposition to the United States and Israel.

A rapidly modernizing, capitalist economy was replaced by populist and Islamic economic and culture.

The leader of the revolution and founder of the Islamic Republic, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, was Iran’s supreme leader until his death in 1989.

He was followed by Ali Khamenei.

With the world focused on the massive protests in Iran, here’s an incredibly well done (and funny) video that explains just how the Islamic regime is set up and why it will be difficult to overthrow it.

Your appreciation for the incredibly brave protesters will skyrocket.

R

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