And the IRRGC pulled in a big win. Growing in power - at the expense of the mullahs since the fiery little rocketeer soared into the figure head Presidency a while back, the Revo guards are taking charge and eclipsing Preacher Command.
To be fair - the IRRGC may have a case to make. Main Mullah minion Mookie has been the biggest disappointment - despite tons of cash, weaponry, and volunteers faithfully delivered unto him in Iraq. Al Sadr accomplished nothing - save periodically gathering his forces to greet defeat repeatedly at the hands of Surging Great Satan - no emirate, caliphate or theocracy anywhere in Iraq.
Totally quagmired - the Sadrists - the largest coalition bloc in the Iraqi gov is almost a dead martyrs party - thousands of constits have died, defected and disappeared - with absolutely nothing to show for it.
Dr. Karim Sadjadpour chief Iran expert at Carniegie Endowment (and expertly hot in Savile Row Threads) shared a quick dress up dossier wise
"At the onset of the Revolution, there was a lot of concern that the Shah’s
army couldn’t be counted on to be loyal to the newly established Islamic
republic. So the Khomeinists started the Revolutionary Guards to be the
protectors of the revolution. That was the original idea for their existence.
But over time they’ve grown in number and they’ve grown in stature, and now
there’s a lot of concern that as their economic interests have grown over the
years, so have their political ambitions
As an institution I think that the Revolutionary Guards are really now
the X-factor in both the political scene and the economic scene. Whereas 10 or
15 years ago people used to say 'well I have a contact who is very powerful
because he is related to such-and-such clergyman', these days in Iran people say
'I have a contact, he is very powerful because he is related to such-and-such
The current Parliament, elected following a massive purge of reformists, began its inaugural session with chants of "Death to America." Its members share Ahmadinejad's social conservatism and aversion to diplomatic compromise on the nuclear issue.
Well, I don’t think we can blame the Great Satan for the cruelty of the Islamic Republic. The Islamic Republic has been behaving in cruel fashion since 1979. For example, the punishment of stoning women to death for adultery existed before the neocons came to power in Washington. But that being said, I think the perception in Tehran, especially the perception of Ayatollah Khamenei, the supreme leader, is that the U.S. problems with Iran are not about Iran’s external behavior, but about the very character of the Iranian government.
Khamenei believes deep down that Iran’s patch of real estate bordering the
Caspian Sea and the Persian Gulf, a strategic location with natural resources,
is so important that he believes that the United States really wants to go back
to a relationship with Iran which they had in the time of the Shah. This was
essentially a patron-client relationship.
So when the U.S. appropriated $75 million for civil society and democracy
promotion in Iran, this simply reinforced the world view of those in Tehran who
believe that the United States is out to change the character of the Iranian
And character counts. Persian Gulf pirates that seize and illegally hold British Marines, aiding and abetting murderous mayhem in Iraq - not to mention nothing but love for the worlds first freely elected rocket rich suicide Gov in the HAMAS Strip and their body part collecting, missile 'resistance movement' best friends forever in the Hiz'B'Allah.
This is significant - Iran has transformed from a State Sponsor of Terrorism into a Terrorist Regime. Actually benefitting from isolation as a control method to increase bling and total command.
As the IRRGC gets their act even more together with a new improved death grip on power, expect an ever more uncompromising cohort on Nuke Chicanery and increased intervention throughout the ME.
Real power in Iran is held by the supreme leader (hence the grand title), Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, and his personal posse.
Cranking up military influ and power is a time honored practise of despots in distress. In WWII, Nazi time Deutschland upgunned the SS from under 40K cats to over a million in like 3 years ( It didn't help either).
This eclipse may be the Supreme Leader's means of consolidating control, or creating a new, alternate new power base to offset and maybe even replace or reduce co dependancy on senior ayatollahs who have sometimes questioned his jumped up ayatollah bona fides.
In this eclipse, Ayatollah Khamenei is the man. A new generation of ex-military leaders comes to power, all directly owing their positions and power to the Supreme Leader.
Any daydreamy dialouge visions of rapprochment ala realpolitik (Kissinger and Ross) the West had of magical moderates regaining power in Tehran are null and void.
"Tehran may offer concessions on a range of issues, for example sacrificing
Hiz'B'Allah and HAMAS and even Syria, in exchange for a tacit acceptance of its
nuclear ambitions by the US and its allies.
That would put the Western negotiators in a quandary: granting Tehran a big
and irreversible prize in exchange for smaller and reversible concessions.
Tehran could activate or de-activate its Syrian, Hiz'B'Allah and HAMAS pawns any
time it wished as it has done with Muqtada al-Sadr in Iraq.
However, once Tehran has the bomb no one would be able to put the genie
back into the bottle.
The only way the Islamic Republic might abandon its nuclear ambitions is
under duress when it realises that the cost of making a bomb, if that is indeed
the aim, is much too high in terms of economic suffering, diplomatic isolation
and/or military defeat. "