The Iranian presidential Elections 2009

by Jun 22, 2009All Articles

Iran’s tenth presidential election was held on 12 June 2009. The President of Iran is the highest official elected by direct popular vote, but does not control foreign policy or the armed forces. Candidates have to be vetted by the Guardian Council, a twelve member body consisting of six clerics (selected by Iran’s Supreme Leader), and six lawyers (proposed by the head of Iran’s judicial system and voted in by the Parliament).

At no time in the history of the Islamic republic has its leadership been so fragmented and divided. To the hard-liners, the years of the presidencies of Khatami and Hashemi-Rafsanjani were aberrations that need to be rectified by removing any semblance of “liberalism” or sociopolitical freedoms from society. Khamenei is relying exceedingly on the security forces while removing his civil advisers — a process reminiscent of the last years of the shah’s rule in Iran; the reformists, on the other hand, keep espousing more and more moderate positions. The 10th presidential election brought this factional conflict to a head.

The 2009 election, featuring a controversial incumbent and — for the first time ever — televised debates, became the most democratic elections ever held in the country. When the results failed to reflect the national will, people took to the streets. Whether the elections were fraudulent is immaterial: the fact remains that they did not correspond to the desire of the majority of the urban voters for a meaningful change.

The articles on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of  the Publishers of Amandla (AIDC), the Advisory Board of Amandla or the Amandla Editorial Collective.

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