Iran: Who will blow out the 41st candle?

Just before its fortieth year of existence, the "Islamic Republic of Iran" encountered a devastating political and social storm.  The grassroots of Iranian society, formerly the base of the ayatollah's support, revolted, telling the mullahs to get lost after becoming utterly frustrated with unsolvable economic and social problems.

The storm, however, did not knock down the tree.  The supreme leader still has his throne, while hangmen, torturers, and so-called judges are actively going about their business.

Does the Iranian population have to endure another decade under the savage fundamentalist rulers?  The trembling waves within the Iranian regime suggest they may not.

In a letter to Iranian supreme leader Ali Khamenei, former president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad expressed his concern for the regime's future.  In a meeting with university students in late February, Ahmadinejad described the letter as "delineating a new horizon to walk out today's complicated and obscurant conditions of the country."

A similar stance was taken by former deputy parliament speaker Mohammad Reza Khatami.

"The root of problems and present events are ourselves.  We shouldn't let the situation get to this point," he said in an interview with a local newspaper.

"I consider the demonstrations an indicator of total discontent.  People do not accept this process anymore[.] ... A demonstrator who chants certain slogans is fed up with the system and breaks it."

Meanwhile, the dominance of Khamenei's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) on Iran's economy has sidelined many Iranian citizens.  Khatami and Ahmadinejad are not the only ones who see the imminent danger, as complaints are now a common characteristic of Iranian officials.

"According to the statistics taken in recent years, with the standards of the World Bank, 33% of Iran's population live at 'absolute poverty,'" said government analyst Hossein Raghfar in a dialogue with the semi-official ISNA news agency.

"Due to the high costs of medical services, 7% of Iranian families have fallen under the poverty line in one year alone.  This means that a family's income is not sufficient for the family's nutrition while they have other expenses, such as transportation, clothing, and accommodation," he added.

Workers' protests spread all over Iran.

This is when Iran's bankrupt economy adds to the horror of its leaders.  The price of the U.S. dollar and other currencies in Iran clearly shows how the ayatollahs' plundering policies have pushed Iran backward.

The dollar, about 100 rials when mullahs grasped power four decades ago, is now sold in Tehran's banks for over 6,000 rials.  (The unofficial "street rate" is over 42,000.)

An April 8 article published in the Ebtekar newspaper reflects the views of an analyst close to the Iranian regime.  The article concludes, "We are now on the verge of a crisis.  For this we are in need of an immediate national salvation." 

Khamenei has named the new Iranian year as "the year of supporting Iranian-made commodities."  This looks more like mockery than truth.

Most Iranian regime officials are making fortunes from smuggling foreign goods into Iran's markets.  The dominance of entities related to Khamenei himself, as well as the big corporations owned by the IRGC along with systematic corruption, have abridged the growth rate of Iran's economy.  Not a single day passes without anti-government demonstrations expanding in different cities around Iran.

The storm started before the leaders of the Iranian regime could blow out forty candles.  The question is, will it be the mullahs or the Iranian people who blow out the 41st candle?

The storm seems to be aiming to take down the whole tree.

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