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Revolution fades away

Mousawi has publicly promised to hold only legally approved demonstrations. Major ayatollahs demanded prosecution of the organizers of the riots, down to death sentences. The Grand Ayatollah Khamenei appears to have blocked Rafsanjani’s attempt at impeaching him.

The clerical government has lost much of its public legitimacy, but the winner is the relatively secular Ahmadinejad rather than the democrats. In the next few years, Iran is more likely to slip into secular demagogic authoritarianism of the Syrian type than to become a model democracy.

Israel’s greatest danger is a democratic Iran. We befriended the Shah, and Israel even helped him with building a nuclear bomb. A democratic Iranian regime would build nuclear weapons, and eventually a sufficiently mad ruler would come to power.

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