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The Revisits Begin…

Well, things are finally looking up!  Time might be finally running out!  Iran is falling on the ropes!

What, you thought I was referring to last night’s debate in Denver?  Since when have I really expressed any interest in that boring horse race–with two supremely unqualified candidates?  But another coming election, next year’s Iranian presidential election, shows perhaps some daylight is arising.

I’m almost positive the candidates for the Persian nation’s 14th most-powerful office (behind Ayatollah Khamenei and the 12 members of the Guardian Council of the Constitution) are equally as unqualified as I find their American counterparts, but the statements attributed to Ali Larijani are revealing:

The Parliament speaker Ali Larijani said that ’80 per cent’ of economic problems were linked to government mismanagement and the rest to sanctions.

‘The speaker should help the government overcome the problem instead of accusing the administration,’ Ahmadinejad said.Larijani is among the possible candidates for next June’s presidential elections that will pick Ahmadinejad’s successor.

Iran’s currency fell again yesterday, hitting a record low of 35,500 rials against the U.S. dollar on the unofficial street trading rate, which is widely followed in Iran.

On Sunday it was 29,500 rials to the dollar. Two years ago, it was close to 10,000 rials for $1.

‘Are these (currency) fluctuations because of economic problems? The answer is no,’ Ahmadinejad said.

‘Is this because of government policies? Never … It’s due to psychological pressures. It’s a psychological battle.

‘The enemy is making pressure by playing with (exchange rate) numbers in the street.’

Ahmadinejad described the sanctions as part of a ‘heavy battle’ that has succeeded in driving down oil exports ‘a bit,’ but he gave no precise figures.

Iran’s currency has dropped 59% in the course of a week.  Sanctions are really biting the Iranian economy, its president for once blaming the proper source instead of Israel to deflect the criticisms of the prime challenger for his job next year.  If there is a next year for the Islamic government.  As Matthew O’Brien also mentions, “the faster the currency collapses, the faster inflation picks up. Saving becomes futile. So does pretending you have a real economy.”
Ive attempted to demonstrate in prior posts the fact that Iran would likely respond to nuclear deterrence exactly as the Russians and Chinese have during and since the Cold War, but history might be turning the page before having to play out these scenarios.  The IDF will have little reason to strike if the Iranian populace burns the facilities down in the wake of an economic collapse.
The real question is what option will Iran turn to if these developments foment another mass revolution.  While the best hope would be a rerun of the Soviet collapse from 1989-1991, I have doubts whether the moral atmosphere that was at the center of the U.S.S.R.’s demise is present in Iran.  When the end comes, will Khamenei and Co go out like Gorbechev, or Bashar al-Assad?
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