Politics in Iran - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

About This Presentation
Title:

Politics in Iran

Description:

Slide 1 ... Chapter 12 – PowerPoint PPT presentation

Number of Views:124
Avg rating:3.0/5.0
Slides: 79
Provided by: Brad1242
Category:

less

Transcript and Presenter's Notes

Title: Politics in Iran


1
Politics in Iran
  • Chapter 12

2
(No Transcript)
3
Quick historical overview
  • Achemenian Empire, called Persian Empire by
    Greeks
  • Destroyed by Alexander the Great
  • Zoroastrianism early religion
  • Islam enters and takes root in the 7th century
    (Muslims overthrow the Sassanid Dynasty)
  • Mongols take over area
  • Islam remains and becomes a source of identity

4
Quick historical overview
  • Shiite Islam (Shiism) becomes established as
    the state religion in the 16th century by Ismail,
    the founder of the Safavid Empire. It is
    surrounded by Sunni states.
  • Shiites believe that the true heirs of Islam are
    the descendants of Ali, called IMAMS. The 12th
    imam, a child, disappeared in the 9th century and
    became known as THE HIDDEN IMAM.
  • Ismael perpetuated the belief that the Hidden
    Imam would eventually return but until he did
    the rulers of Iran were in his place as the true
    heirs of Islam.
  • Can you make any connections between this belief
    and the way Iran operates today?

5
Can you make any connections between this belief
and the way Iran operates today?
  • The Ayatollah

6
Can you make any connections between this belief
and the way Iran operates today?
  • The Ayatollah
  • Leader of the Revolution, Founder of the Islamic
    Republic, Guide of the Oppressed Masses,
    Commander of the Armed Forces, and Imam of the
    Muslim World

7
Historical Overview The Revolution
  • Pahlavi Shahs 1925 to 1979
  • Attempted to secularize Iran
  • Revolution of 1979
  • Led by Ayatollah Khomeini- religion and politics
    brought together in his person
  • Irans legitimacy connected to the principles of
    Shia Islam

8
Historical Overview The Pahlavi Monarchy
  • Authoritarian rule
  • Demands for free elections
  • Shahs regime increasingly contested at home but
    it continued to receive support from the West in
    general and in the U.S. in particular
  • Opposition to the Shah also became opposition to
    the U.S.
  • Evidence suggests that Shah was successful at
    manipulating U.S. policymakers to achieve his
    ends rather than it being the other way around.

9
Historical Legacy The Islamic Revolution
  • Who and Why?
  • Who? Middle Class Urban Revolution!
  • Coalition of intellectuals, university and high
    school students and teachers, bazaar merchants,
    politically active clerics and seminarians,
    industrial workers, and finally, state employees
    and white-collared workers
  • Why? Anti-Shah, Anti-USA
  • Despotism, corruption, and the alliances with the
    United States and Israel united such diverse
    ideological factions as liberal adherents to 1906
    constitution, Marxist-Leninist leftists and
    Islamists
  • Charismatic Leader Ayatollah Khomeini's

10
Iran in a nutshell
  • Is democracy incompatible with Islam, or is true
    Islam actually based on popular support?
  • A developing economy that is part of the global
    market with a single product - ______

11
Iran in a nutshell
  • Is democracy incompatible with Islam, or is true
    Islam actually based on popular support?
  • A developing economy that is part of the global
    market with a single product oil.

12
Iran in a nutshell
  • Is democracy incompatible with Islam, or is true
    Islam actually based on popular support?
  • A developing economy that is part of the global
    market with a single product oil.
  • Second largest oil producer in the Middle East
  • Fourth largest oil producer in the world

13
Comparisons
  • SIMILARITIES
  • Russia, China, Mexico, Nigeria and Iran are all
    oil producers
  • Iran and Mexico are both DEVELOPING economies,
    not less developed economies (like Nigeria)
  • DIFFERENCE
  • Iran is the only THEOCRACY

14
Overview The Big Picture
  • System of Government Mixed Theocratic-Presidenti
    al System
  • Distribution of Power Unitary System
  • Electoral System SMDP, but double ballot
  • Constitution Constitution of 1979 and 1989
    Amendment
  • Legislature UnicameralMajles
  • Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei
  • Current Head of State Ali Khamenei
  • Head of Government Hassan Rouhani, President
  • Current Ruling Party conservatives
  • Major Political Parties conservatives,
    pragmatists, and radicals

15
SOVEREIGNTY AUTHORITY - POWER
  • Ideas of sovereignty go back to the history of
    the region
  • Authority connected to religion. Early history
    the religion was Zoroastrianism, more recent
    history the religion is Islam
  • Legitimacy
  • From religion
  • the Constitution of 1979 and the Constitutional
    Amendments of 1989

16
LEGITIMACY
  • RELIGION-
  • anchored in Shiism and its belief in the
    Iranian rulers as the rulers of Islam until the
    return of the Hidden Imam
  • CONSTITUTION
  • Reflects the importance of religion for the
    legitimacy of the state, affirms faith in God,
    Divine Justice, the Quran, the Prophet Muhammad,
    the Twelve Imams, and the eventual return of the
    Hidden Imam
  • Jurists Guardianship and other divine
    principles
  • CRISIS OF LEGITIMACY
  • Two conflicting ideas challenge legitimacy
    sovereignty of the people and divinely inspired
    clerical rule. This became the political rift
    between Conservatives and Reformers

17
EVOLUTION OFPOLITICAL TRADITIONS
  • Though the millennia of the history of the region
    from the ancients to the introduction of Islam
    and the revolution

18
POLITICAL CULTURE
  • AUTHORITARIANISM BUT NOT TOTALITARIANISM since
    the Safavid Dynasty there were strong central
    political leaders but people had control over
    their individual lives and there was a civil
    society
  • UNION OF POLITICAL AND RELIGIOUS AUTHORITY was
    always the case since the Ancient Persians (brief
    deviation during the Qajar Dynasty where there
    was separation between the two 1794-1925) to
    return after the 1979 Revolution
  • SHIISM AND SHARIA religion links citizens to
    their government as 90 of Iranians are Shiites.
    Sharia, the Islamic Law legitimizes the power of
    the government

19
POLITICAL CULTURE
  • ESCAPE FROM EUROPEAN COLONIZATION Iran was
    never under the direct control of a European
    power during the age of imperialism. This is a
    fundamental source of difference with the other
    two countries in this unit, Mexico and Nigeria,
    that were directly controlled by other countries
  • INFLUENCE OF ANCIENT PERSIA provides a
    different culture for Iranians that separates
    them from their Arab neighbors (beside their
    being Shiites and the rest being Sunnis) .
    Iranians speak Persian, not Arabic and this
    history has affected other cultural traits such
    as literature, arts, architecture that create a
    unique Iranian identity

20
POLITICAL CULTURE
  • STRONG SENSE OF IRANIAN NATIONALISM distinct
    from other Muslims. They are Iranians first and
    Muslims second. Persian roots encourage the
    perception of Iran as a distinct culture.

21
POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC CHANGE
  • Political changes have taken place through both
    evolution and revolution
  • Evolution of religious and political union from
    early history to present
  • Two important revolutions in the 20th century
  • 1905-1909 - set democratic impulses in place and
    attempted separation of religion and politics
  • 1979 reunified religion with politics in the
    modern theocracy

22
POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC CHANGE
  • The Constitutional Revolution of 1905-1909
  • During the reign of the Qajars (1794-1925)
  • Qajars ruled during the era of European
    imperialism
  • They lost land in the north and northwest to
    Russia
  • They sold oil-drilling rights in the southwest to
    the British
  • Borrowed from European banks to maintain court
    luxuries which led the country inot serious debt
    and caused the disatisfacti0n of the people
  • All of the above encouraged the Revolution

23
POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC CHANGE
  • The Constitutional Revolution of 1905-1909
  • Revolution began with demonstrations by business
    owners and bankers in response to the Qajars
    handing over customs collections to Europeans
  • In 1906 merchants and industrialists, influenced
    by British liberalism, demanded a written
    constitution
  • The shah was encouraged by the British to
    conceded to the demands
  • 1906 Constitution modeled after western
    constitutions and included
  • Direct elections
  • Separation of powers
  • Laws by elected legislature
  • Bill of rights

24
POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC CHANGE
  • The Constitutional Revolution of 1905-1909
  • Debate about separation of religion from the
    government
  • Monarchy retained but a strong legislature
    created to balance executive power the Majles
  • Constitution guaranteed seats in the Majles to
    the People of the Book Jews, Christians and
    Zoroastrians
  • The Majles had the authority to make and pass
    laws and it controlled cabinet ministers who
    reported to the legislature not the shah
  • Religion was upheld still with Shiism declared
    the state religion and only Shiites could be
    ministers
  • Created a Guardian Council made up of clerics
    who had the power to veto any legislation

25
POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC CHANGE
  • Economic change was dependent on the geography
    and the natural resources of Iran
  • Agricultural basis weak due to lack of arable
    land
  • Location led to emphasis on overland trade which
    caused Iran to be marginalized when trade sifted
    to overseas routes
  • Major change with the discovery of oil

26
POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC CHANGE
  • A major economic change took place during the
    rule of the Pahlavis (1925-1979)
  • The first Pahlavi shah did away with all
    democratic reforms of the Qajars and
    reestablished authoritarian rule
  • They were challenged in the 1950s and the second
    shah had to flee the country but he was brought
    back by the British and the Americans. The
    British wanted to maintain their oil privileges,
    the Americans wanted to keep Iran under their
    influence during the Cold War (as a result, many
    Iranians came to see Britain and the US as
    supporters of autocracy and the shah as a pawn of
    foreign powers).

27
POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC CHANGE
  • A major economic change took place during the
    rule of the Pahlavis (1925-1979)
  • Economically Iran was changed to a RENTIER STATE-
    a state that can sustain itself independently of
    social pressures and powerful interest groups
  • Rentier economy is heavily supported by state
    expenditure while the state receives rent from
    other countries
  • Iran received an increasing amount of income by
    exporting its oil and leasing oil fields to
    foreign countries
  • Iran was transformed inot a one-product economy
    and was heavily dependent on oil to keep the
    government afloat
  • In the 1970s the shah adopted IMPORT SUBSTITUTION
    INDUSTRIALIZATION

28
POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC CHANGE
  • A major economic change took place during the
    rule of the Pahlavis (1925-1979)
  • Economically Iran was changed to a RENTIER STATE
  • Rentier economy is heavily supported by state
    expenditure while the state receives rent from
    other countries
  • Iran received an increasing amount of income by
    exporting its oil and leasing oil fields to
    foreign countries
  • Iran was transformed inot a one-product economy
    and was heavily dependent on oil to keep the
    government afloat
  • In the 1970s the shah adopted IMPORT SUBSTITUTION
    INDUSTRIALIZATION encouraged domestic
    industries to provide products that the
    population needed

29
POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC CHANGE
  • The Islamic Revolution 1979
  • Almost completely religious in nature
  • Dominant ideology Shiism
  • Led by a cleric who ruled the country for 10
    years a theocracy
  • Ayatollah Khomeini a charismatic leader.
  • Defended Islamic fundamentalism (literal
    interpretation of Islamic texts, social
    conservatism, political traditionalism) and
    articulated resentments against the elite (shah
    and his cnonies) and the United States the
    Great Satan
  • Gave new meaning to the Shia term JURIST
    GUARDIANSHIP originally concept was that the
    senior clergy had broad authority over the
    unfortunate (widows, orphans, mentally ill).
    Khomeini claimed true meaning is that the clergy
    have authority over the entire Shia community

30
POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC CHANGE
  • The Islamic Republic 1979 to present
  • Established after the Shah fled the country in
    February 1979
  • New constitution drawn by the ASSEMBLY OF
    RELIGIOUS EXPERTS a 73-man assembly of clerics
    elected directly by the people
  • Constitution gave broad authority to Khomeini and
    the clergy
  • Ratified by the electorate
  • CULTURAL REVOLUTION launched after constitution
    to purify the country of secular values and
    behaviors, especially those of western origins

31
CITIZENS, SOCIETY, AND THE STATE
  • Iranian citizens have had little direct
    experience with democracy but they understand the
    importance of civil society

32
CITIZENS, SOCIETY, AND THE STATE
  • CLEAVAGES
  • Religion almost 90 Shia almost 10 are Sunni
    and 1 combination Jews ,Christians, Zoroastrians
    and Bahai. Many minority religions have fled
    Iran since the 1979 Revolution
  • Ethnicity 51 Persian (speak Persian/Farsi)
  • 24 Azeri (fear of joining Azerbaijan
  • dont
    speak Persian but are Shia
  • 8 Gilaki and Mazandarani
  • 7 Kurds - Sunni
  • 3 Arabs - Sunni

33
CITIZENS, SOCIETY, AND THE STATE
  • CLEAVAGES
  • Social Class peasants and lower middle class
    support regime. Economically they have gained
    services since the Revolution. Middle and
    upper-middle class tend to be secular so they are
    critical of the clerics . Economically they have
    not fared well since the Revolution
  • Reformers v. Conservatives fundamental cleavage
    in political culture. Based on the debate as to
    which is better a democracy or a theocracy.
  • Conservatives keep the regime as it is under
    the control of clerics and Sharia law
  • Reformers more secularization and democracy.
    They do not want to do away with the basic
    principles of an Islamic state

34
CITIZENS, SOCIETY, AND THE STATE
  • CLEAVAGES
  • Pragmatic Conservatives v. radical clerics
    division among the clerics that has led to many
    important disagreements at the top levels of
    policymaking
  • Pragmatic conservatives favor liberal economic
    policies that encourage foreign trade, free
    markets and foreign direct investment. They have
    strong ties to the middle class merchants
    (bazaaris) and rural landowners.
  • Radical Clerics mostly younger more militant
    clerics they want the government to enhance
    social justice such as providing welfare benefits
    to the poor. They support state-sponsored
    wealth distribution and price controls.

35
CITIZENS, SOCIETY, AND THE STATE
  • CIVIL SOCIETY
  • No civil society under Pahlavi rule but the
    revolution did not restore it.
  • Revolutionaries launched campaign to impose the
    values of the Islamic state
  • Professors with western preferences were fired
    and replaced with people who supported the regime
  • Educated people fled the country
  • Tehran Spring period of political
    liberalization (mild)
  • loosening of freedom of speech and press
  • More open economy
  • Friendlier towards outside world
  • During the presidency of Muhammad Khatami
    (1997-2005)

36
CITIZENS, SOCIETY, AND THE STATE
  • CIVIL SOCIETY
  • End of Tehran Spring with presidency of Mahmoud
    Ahmadinejad (2005-2013)
  • Newspapers closed
  • Books and websites banned and censored
  • Peaceful protests and demonstrations not
    tolerated
  • Prominent scholars , journalists, opposition
    politicians arrested

37
CITIZENS, SOCIETY, AND THE STATE
  • POLITICAL PARTICIPATION
  • Even though civil liberties and rights are in
    constitution the Islamic Republic severely
    curtails them as they are curtailing civil
    society
  • Protests and demonstrations are banned
  • Public meetings are banned
  • there were student meetings and demonstrations in
    1999, 2002, 2003 calling for an end to religious
    rule thousands arrested
  • Factory workers also have demonstrated against
    the government
  • With Ahmadinejads rule there has been renewed
    crackdown and security forces have been used to
    put down demonstrations with violence
  • Nonetheless, protests for days after 2009
    elections by the Green Movement opposition to
    Ahmadinejad

38
CITIZENS, SOCIETY, AND THE STATE
  • POLITICAL PARTICIPATION
  • 2011 the liberal politicians called for Green
    Movement to march in support of the
    freedom-seeking protests in Egypt and Tunisia
    (the Arab Spring). Government reacted with
    violence
  • WOMEN AND THE POLITICAL SYSTEM
  • Women are veiled but they dont resent it or see
    it as oppressive as it is seen in the west (its
    use in the region predates Islam)
  • They have access to education
  • Educated women resent the regime because their
    job opportunities and political right are not
    what they were led to expect
  • Sharia law sees women as the wards of their male
    relative

39
CITIZENS, SOCIETY, AND THE STATE
  • POLITICAL PARTICIPATION
  • WOMEN AND THE POLITICAL SYSTEM
  • EQUALITY WITH DIFFERENCE the policy of the
    Islamic republic towards women
  • Divorce and custody laws follow the Sharia which
    favors males
  • Women must wear scarves and long coats in public
  • Cannot leave the country without the consent of
    male relatives
  • Stoning for adultery has taken place but
    government recently banned the practice
  • Women are 33 of the total labor force
  • Women are 2.8 of the Majles

40
POLITICAL INSTITUTIONS
  • Unique political system in the entire world. It
    blends theocracy and democracy
  • Characterized by DUALISM - the attempted syntesi
    s between divine and popular sovereignty
    institutions
  • Leads to tension between Islam and practical
    governance
  • Coexistence of two types of institutions -
    appointed and elected

41
Political Institutions of the Islamic Republic
  1. Supreme Leader
  2. Guardian Council
  3. Expediency Council
  4. Assembly of Religious Experts
  5. President
  6. ParliamentMajles
  7. Judiciary
  8. The ConstitutionHonestly Undemocratic

Theocracy
Democracy
42
POLITICAL INSTITUTIONS
  • LINKAGE INSTITUTIONS
  • What is the most prevalent linkage institution?

43
POLITICAL INSTITUTIONS
  • LINKAGE INSTITUTIONS
  • Political Parties
  • Allowed in the constitution but did not develop
    until 1997
  • Parties organized around personalities, not
    issues which makes them unstable
  • Fall into 2 groups conservative, pragmatists and
    radicals
  • Conservatives
  • Clerics and politicians who argue for stricter
    social rules
  • Call for greater authority to Supreme Leader at
    the expense of elected bodies
  • Support market oriented policies (paradoxical!)

44
POLITICAL INSTITUTIONS
  • LINKAGE INSTITUTIONS
  • Political Parties
  • Pragmatists
  • Accomodating on social issues
  • Support economic liberalization and privatization
  • Radicals
  • Younger revolutionaries and clerics influenced by
    leftist and anti-imperialist policies
  • Increased state control of economy to ensure
    social justice
  • Active in supporting Islamists struggles in
    Middle East

45
POLITICAL INSTITUTIONS
  • The Iranian party system reflects FACTIONALISM
  • The splintering of the political elites based not
    just on points of view but also on personalities
  • Parties are fluid and weak, they cannot influence
    policymaking

46
POLITICAL INSTITUTIONS
  • ELECTIONS
  • Voting age 18 years old
  • Vote for Assembly of Religious Experts,
    representatives to the Majles and for the
    president
  • Local level elections
  • Plurality system, 2 rounds
  • All candidates are vetted by the Guardian Council

47
POLITICAL INSTITUTIONS
  • Majles Elections
  • Divided into multimember constituencies
  • Largest is Tehran with 30 representatives
  • Each voter can write down the names of as many
    candidates as there are seats in a constituency.
  • Top vote-getters in each constituency are elected
    provided they receive over 50 of the total vote.
  • Second round determines the remaining
    representatives from among the runner-ups.

48
POLITICAL INSTITUTIONS
  • Presidential elections
  • 1980 first ever presidential election
  • Victory of a lay Islamist Banisadr
  • Impeached by Parliament and deposed by Khomeini
    in 1981
  • His successor and prime minister killed by a bomb
    two months later
  • The next four elections Khomeini associates
  • Result participation went down
  • Khatami outsider appealed to those who had
    been humiliated by the regime 1997-2001
  • Promised greater cultural openness and personal
    freedom
  • 2005 and 2009 elections arch conservative mayor
    of Tehran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
  • Some question as to voter fraud allegations
  • 2013 elections - Hassan Rouhani

49
POLITICAL INSTITUTIONS
  • Local elections
  • Constitution of 1906 provided for elected local
    government councils but these were never
    constituted.
  • Similar provision of the 1979 Constitution first
    put into action in 1999.
  • Iranians for the first time went to the polls to
    elect city, town, and village councils.
  • Reformists won control over most councils
    stymied by conservatives
  • Voters stopped participating.
  • December 2006 new elections
  • Participation increased Ahmadinejad
    conservatives won only a few seats rebuke for
    the Presidents handling of the economy.

50
POLITICAL INSTITUTIONS
  • INTEREST GROUPS
  • Strong correlation between interest groups and
    political parties
  • Ex. Factory workers interest group the Workers
    House part of the Islamic Labor Party
  • Few business interest groups because not much
    private business after Revolution of 1979.
  • Agriculture, internal trade are privately owned
    but the government controls between 65-80 of the
    economy so that it dominates over private actors

51
POLITICAL INSTITUTIONS
  • MASS MEDIA
  • Took a hard hit after the Revolution
  • Over 20 newspapers shut down in 1979, an
    additional 7 in the following 2 years
  • 1981 The Majles makes it a criminal offense to
    use pen and speech against the government
  • By 2002 a total of 60 reform newspapers were shut
    down
  • Radio and television are government-run most
    newspapers and magazines are privately owned
  • Despite the restrictions, when Iranian press is
    compared to the press in other countries of the
    region, we find that it has more freedom to
    criticize the government

52
GOVERNMENT STRUCTURE
  • Iran is a centralized unitary state divided into
    provinces, districts, sub-districts and local
    areas
  • Each level of administration is run by elected
    councils but there are also appointed governors
    and regional officials that serve as consultants
    to the elected councils
  • Government structure is complex in that it
    attempts to blend theocratic ideals with
    democratic ones.

53
GOVERNMENT STRUCTURE
  • JURISTS GUARDIANSHIP
  • Ayatollah Khomeinis overarching principle that
    gives authority to
  • The Supreme Leader
  • The Guardian Council
  • The Assembly of Religious Experts
  • The Expediency Council
  • to have all-encompassing authority over the
    whole community based on their ability to
    understand Sharia law and their commitment to
    champion the rights of the people
  • All four have broad executive, legislative and
    judicial powers that allow them to supersede all
    other positions and political bodies

54
The Supreme Leader
  • Highest authority in the Islamic Republic
  • Seen as iman of entire community
  • Represents pinnacle of theocratic principles of
    the state.
  • Ayatollah Khomeini and Ali Khamenei.
  • He is the Faqih the leading Islamic jurist to
    interpret the meaning of religious documents and
    shari'a law.
  • Links three branches of government together, may
    mediate among them, and is charged with
    determining the interests of Islam

55
The Supreme Leader
  • Constitution gives Supreme Leader many powers
  • Elimination of presidential candidates
  • Dismissal of president
  • Command of armed forces
  • Declaration of war and peace
  • Appointment and removal of major administrators
    and judges
  • Nomination of six members of Guardian Council
  • Appointment of many non-governmental directors,
    such as the national radio-television network and
    semi-public foundations
  • Formally, is head of state (president is head of
    government), but the Supreme Leader holds
    ultimate power

56
The Guardian Council
  • Represents theocratic principles
  • Consists of twelve MALE clerics
  • Six appointed by Supreme Leader
  • Six nominated by the chief judge (judiciary) and
    approved by Majles
  • Purpose To ensure that all bills passed by
    Majles conform to shari'a law.
  • Has power to decide who can compete in elections.
  • They disqualify 100s or even 1000s of candidates
    before each elections for both the Majles and the
    presidential elections.
  • Along with Supreme Leader, Guardian Council
    exercises principle of jurist guardianship,
    making sure that democratic bodies adhere to
    Islamic beliefs and laws.

57
Assembly of Religious Experts
  • 86 member all male assembly directly elected
    every 4 years by people, but whose candidates are
    approved of by Guardian Council
  • Given the responsibility of broad constitutional
    interpretationalong with Supreme Leader and
    Guardian Council
  • Main Function To select Supreme Leader and has
    power to remove Supreme Leader (after 1989
    reforms).
  • In theory, Assembly of Religious Experts had
    power over the Supreme Leader, but since the
    Assembly is chosen by the Guardian Council and
    the Guardian Council is chosen by the Supreme
    Leader, the real power always rests with the
    Supreme Leader.

58
The Expediency Council
  • A 32 member council for determination of what is
    in the interest of the regime
  • Purpose Originally designed to solve disputes
    between Majles and Guardian Council. Now it has
    expanded powers.
  • Example Now it can originate its own
    legislation
  • Began as council of 13 clerics, now not all are
    clerics but they are appointed by Supreme Leader
  • Collectively, they represent the most powerful
    men in Iran.

59
The President-The Executive
  • Iran does not have a presidential system, so the
    head of the executive does not have the same
    authority as presidents in countries that have a
    presidential system, such as the U.S., Mexico,
    and Nigeria.
  • President represents the democratic principles in
    Iran, and functions as the head of government,
    while the supreme leader serves as head of state.
  • Directly elected by Iranian citizens every four
    years.
  • Limited to two consecutive terms in office,
    though may re-run.
  • Must be pious Shia who upholds Islamic principles

60
The President-The Executive
  • President holds the following powers
  • Devising the budget
  • Supervising economic matters
  • Proposing legislation to the Majles
  • Executing policies
  • Signing of treaties, laws, and agreements
  • Chairing the National Security Council
  • Selecting vice presidents and cabinet members
  • Appointing provincial governors, town mayors, and
    ambassadors
  • The cabinet conducts the real day-to-day work
    over governance.

61
Bureaucracy-The Executive
  • Under the control of the president, but not
    really
  • Has expanded over the years as a source of
    employment (doubled since 1979)
  • Made up of government ministries, ex. The
    Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance whose
    job it is to censure the media the Intelligence
    Ministry which is the chief security
    organization, etc.
  • The ministries are headed by clerics so the
    bureaucracy is controlled by the religious leaders

62
The Majles-The Legislature
  • Unicameral, the Majles is comprised of 290
    members directly elected through SMDP.
  • In some ways the Assembly of Religious Experts
    has functioned as an upper house since 1989 when
    its membership was increased to 86 elected
    representatives
  • Must be Muslims but the Constitution provides for
    five members of Parliament to represent
    Christians (3), Jews (one) and Zoroastrians (one)
  • All its bills are subject to the veto of the
    Council of Guardiansgreatly limits power.

63
The Majles-The Legislature
  • Predates Iranian Revolutionfirst created by
    Constitution of 1906
  • Some of the powers of the Majles
  • Enacting or changing laws (with approval of
    Guardian Council
  • Interpreting legislation, as long as they dont
    contradict the judicial authorities
  • Appointing six of the twelve members of Guardian
    Council, chosen from a list drawn up by the chief
    judge (judiciary)
  • Investigating the cabinet ministries and public
    complaints against the executive and judiciary
  • Removing cabinet members, but not the president
  • Approving the budget, cabinet appointments,
    treaties, and loans

64
The Judiciary
  • Judicial Review does not exist in Iran
  • Ultimate legal authority resides in sharia NOT
    constitution.
  • Run by Chief Justice who is appointed by Supreme
    Leader for a 5-year term and must be a cleric.
  • Under Chief Justice is Supreme Court, highest
    court in the land.
  • All judges on Supreme Court must be clerics
    because judicial system is based on shari'a law.
  • Two important things to remember about judiciary
  • Distinction between two types of law shari'a
    and qanun
  • The of principle of jurist guardianship means
    that the Supreme Leader, the Guardian Council,
    and the Assembly of Religious Experts have the
    final say regarding interpretation of law.

65
The Judiciary
  • Sharia Law
  • Islamic law that comes directly from the time of
    Muhammad.
  • Foundation of all Islamic civilizationauthority
    goes beyond Irans borders.
  • Muslims believe it to be the essence of Muhammad
    himself.
  • Purpose Unifying Islamic morals and values
  • Foundation of Irans political system Sharia
    law supersedes all other law, thus is foundation
    of Iranian law.
  • Jurist Guardianship is a reflection of shari'a
    lawSupreme Leader being the key interpreter of
    this sacred law

66
The Judiciary
  • Qanun law
  • No sacred basisunlike sharia law
  • It is a body of statutes made by legislative
    bodies inside Iran
  • qanun are passed by the Majles.
  • Qanun is law made by the peoples elected
    representatives (as opposed to Sharia that is
    divine law derived from God)
  • Qanun must in no way contradict sharia law.
  • an important job of the Guardian Council (and
    ultimately the Supreme Leader) is to review
    legislative work of Majles and apply the
    interpretation of sharia to all laws passed.

67
The Military
  • Regular army, navy airforce in existence since
    the Shah
  • According to constitution it protects the borders
  • Revolutionary Guards elite military force
    established by Khomeini after the revolution.
    Commanders appointed by the Supreme Leader
  • Created to be a parallel force to the regular
    military to avoid the possibility of the military
    acting against the revolution
  • It protects the Republic
  • Supreme Leader is commander in chief
  • Both fought in the Iran-Iraq War (1980-1988)
  • Basij loosely organized military, formally part
    of the Revolutionary Guards. Accused of brutality
    against demonstrators

68
Iran-Iraq War
  • The perfect thing for Ayatollah Khomeini
  • War National Unity
  • Provoked by Saddam Hussein of Iraq
  • Allowed the regime to consolidate power by
    calling for national unity in the face of a
    foreign invader
  • The war became a means to suppress domestic
    discontent
  • US supported Saddam and Iraq with billions of
    dollars of military aide!

69
(No Transcript)
70
(No Transcript)
71
Elite Recruitment
  • Under the Shah - small class of educated and
    secular Iranians who demonstrated personal
    loyalty to monarch filled offices
  • Shah monitored carefully to avoid the rise of
    potential rivals
  • Passive and dependent nature of pol elite
  • In Republic, political elites based on
    revolutionary pedigree, independent of class or
    background, thus resulting in younger, less
    cosmopolitan, more provincial and more
    middle/lower-class members
  • Elite clergy trained in seminaries in Najaf and
    Qom where Khomeini trained

72
Elite Recruitment
  • Most elites attended Islamicized universities,
    took part in think tanks, enrolled in IRGC and
    Basij (like Ahmadinejad)
  • Regular army, navy and air force havent had much
    influence in politics
  • Kinship ties and clientelism marriage is often
    used to cement political alliances and create
    bonds between prominent families
  •  

73
PUBLIC POLICY
  • Laws can originate in many places, not just the
    legislature and can be blocked by many other
    state institutions
  • Two most important policymaking institutions are
    the Majles and the Guardian Council with the
    Expediency Council refereeing disputes between
    the two

74
PUBLIC POLICY
  • ECONOMIC POLICY
  • Economics is for donkeys Ayatollah Khomeini
  • Disagreements between conservatives and
    reformists
  • 2002 bill drafted in Majles by reformers
    permitting foreigners to own as much as 100 of
    any firm (up from 48). Not approved by Guardian
    Council.
  • Dualism influence leaders want improved
    standards of living but are afraid about the
    influence of secular prosperity on devout
    practice of Shiism
  • OIL made infrastructure development possible
    with the influx of money the RENTIER STATE
  • Main problem is the instability of prices world
    market affects the countrys economy

75
PUBLIC POLICY
  • POPULATION POLICY
  • Attempts to bring down the birth rate
  • Increase in population after the Revolution as
    large families were encouraged
  • Stress on schools and employment
  • Clerics approved policies promoting lower birth
    rates
  • FOREIGN POLICY
  • Ahmadenejad called the holocaust a myth
  • He threatened to attack American interests
    everywhere if the US were to attack Iran
  • Hostile relationship with US and west
  • Member of international organizations (UN, OPEC
    among others

76
PUBLIC POLICY
  • NUCLEAR ENERGY
  • Nuclear program goes back many decades but came
    under scrutiny after 9-11
  • President Bush included Iran in is axis of
    evil, countries that threaten the peace of the
    world by developing weapons of mass destruction
  • Iran claims that its nuclear program is for the
    generation of power not weapons
  • Evidence that they are developing weapons
  • Signed Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty
  • European Union put pressure and offered
    incentives to deal with nuclear issue - failed
    so UN placed economic sanctions in 2006

77
Political Socialization
  • Educational system
  • The military
  • Religion and religious institutions
  • Mass media
  • Family and social groups

78
(No Transcript)
Write a Comment
User Comments (0)
About PowerShow.com