[lit-ideas] Re: Aren't you glad you no longer have a Hitler problem?

  • From: Judith Evans <judithevans001@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sat, 24 Jun 2006 20:14:06 +0100 (BST)

--- Eric Yost <eyost1132@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> Ahmadinajad only received 19% of the first vote -
> second 
> place - with Rafsanjani receiving a full 2 points
> more in an 
> election where the top 5 candidates went like this
> in the polls:
> Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani 21%
> Mahmoud Ahmadinejad 19%
> Mehdi Karroubi 17%
> Mohammad Bagher Ghalibaf 13%
> Mostafa Moeen 13%
> Now, when the runoffs happened between Rafsanjani
> and 
> Ahmadinajad, it's a 40/60 split? 

Perfectly possible and within the bounds of normal
electoral possibility.  Also, according to the
Brookings Institute, 

During the campaign, Ahmadinejad promised to challenge
the dominant economic elite, open up opportunities for
ordinary people, and root out corruption. His populist
stance prompted many Iranians who had not voted in the
first round to turn out to vote for him in the
second?thus helping to explain the upset of his
victory over former President Hashemi Rafsanjani, a
man widely seen as the symbol of elite corruption.

According to Bakhash, Ahmadinejad's outsider image is
not entirely false, despite his close links to the
regime. He and his core supporters feel marginalized
by trends over the past decade, especially
Western-style political reform, economic and cultural
liberalization, and the rise of Westernized
technocrats into positions of authority. They resent
not only the reform movement, but also their own
conservative colleagues who they feel have compromised
on key tenets of the revolution. For them, it is a
mark of pride to refer to themselves as
"fundamentalists"?which, in Persian, can also mean
"people of principle."

Semati offered a similar analysis of the election.
Ahmadinejad is a true believer?honest, pious, and not
corrupt, with a reputation for quiet efficiency as
mayor of Tehran. While the more sinister rumors about
his past career in the Revolutionary Guards appear to
be untrue, he is deeply committed to the Islamic
Republic. Semati agreed that Ahmadinejad's vocal
opposition to corruption (and Rafsanjani's so-called
"oil mafia") played a key role in his victory.
Ahmadinejad succeeded in mobilizing three key
constituencies behind him: the rural masses, the urban
poor, and religious conservatives. His victory shows
that the use of neighborhood mosques and religious
associations are still an effective means of political
mobilization. The reform movement has retained the
support of the educated middle class, but has failed
to expand its appeal beyond this core constituency.

Overall, Semati said, the election showed that the
tendencies of the Iranian electorate have not changed.
Conservatives have the support of no more than 35
percent of the population, including a core
conservative bloc of 15 percent or so. The majority
still supports reform in general: perhaps 45-50
percent voted for changing the status quo in some way,
while another 15 percent boycotted the election.

Meanwhile, the fundamental cleavages in Iranian
politics and society?between state and society,
between elites and masses, and among generations?also
have not changed. While the socioeconomic elite may
value political freedoms, the masses are exhausted
with politics and care more about issues of economic
security. The generation gap is more complex than is
generally recognized, cutting not only across the
public but also across the ruling elites. Ahmadinejad
represents the new generation of conservatives, whose
rise to power will be a defining feature of his


That's right out of
> the 
> beetles tune, "I get by with a little help from my
> friends."

like Bush in 2000

Judy Evans, Cardiff

All new Yahoo! Mail "The new Interface is stunning in its simplicity and ease 
of use." - PC Magazine 
To change your Lit-Ideas settings (subscribe/unsub, vacation on/off,
digest on/off), visit www.andreas.com/faq-lit-ideas.html

Other related posts: