Arash Azizi Profile picture
Author "SHADOW COMMANDER‌: Soleimani, US and Iran's Global Ambition" | Flaneur | Cinephile | Phd cand. @NYUhistory | Former BBC آرش عزیزی
15 Feb
Iranian Reformist Front (Jebheye Eslathalabane Iran) was officially founded yesterday in Jamaran, Khomeini's historic house near Tehran.

The founding meeting elected Behzad Nabavi as an interim head since he is oldest.

And also 5 people as a committee to draft the IRF's by-laws
The five are:

1- Outspoken Tehran MP @mah_sadeghi
2- Faraj Komijani, politician with a base in an official teachers union
3- Ali Bagheri (low-key politician)
4- @MansooriAzar , noted reformist politician
5- Rouhani's ex-VP @mowlaverdi
Some more pictures of the meeting.

The next meeting of the group is on Wednesday and will be held virtually.

The top question remains whether and who (and how many candidates) to run for the coming #IranElections2021
Read 11 tweets
13 Feb
#Iran's embattled reformists will launch a new umbrella organization, probably by tomorrow.

The "Iranian Reformist Front" will bring together reformist parties (and not personalities) and will decide whether and who to run for #IranElections2021
Its first head will be ex-MP, ex-minister Behzad Nabavi who is the oldest at 78 (it's a tradition that the oldest member of a body will be its first interim head.) He might also run for the permanent leadership, I am told.

The body has the support of former president Khatami
The 'parties not personalities' distinguished the 'Front' from the already-existing Reformist Policy Council which has about 30 or so members who act as individuals.
Read 5 tweets
27 Nov 20
Great writing by @AnshelPfeffer on the BDS, why it has failed and why Bibi and Pompeo want to pretend it's all powerful.

"BDS is a useful foil for the right-wing in Israel which needs to continue maintaining a siege mentality among Israeli citizens"…
"But for a certain type of American Jewish organization and philanthropist, so lacking in imagination and independent thought that they need to subcontract their Jewish identity to Israel, BDS provides a "battle" in which they can easily take part."
What the same writer wrote in another article is illuminating:

"For the last decade no one has stopped Israel from doing pretty much whatever it likes in Gaza and the West Bank. No one has put any meaningful pressure on Israel to end the occupation."
Read 5 tweets
26 Nov 20
For a few years now, world politics has been dominated by right-wing illiberal nationalism of Trump, Modi, Netanyahu, Erdogan, Orban and Putin (Xi is similar, Abe not far off.)

Victory of Biden's liberal-left coalition over Trump is a significant defeat for these politics
The left's response to this quarrel has mostly been a disappointing mess, with honorable exceptions like Bernie and AOC. We have been confused and often lacked a united analysis let alone a response and a proper alternative.
Some leftists refused to take sides between liberal capitalism and illiberal anti-democratic nationalism if they didn't semi-openly cheer for the latter. The liberals, of course, often didn't make things better by making left their primary enemy.
Read 4 tweets
26 Nov 20
Hey Iran page of Jadaliyya! Have some spine.

If it’s bad to punish a piece that “essentializes Iranian society” and writes uncritically about any military figure, let alone one openly involved in war crimes, then apologize for having published it AND your editors defending it.
If it is this bad, then why taking it down “temporarily”? If it is not, why taking it down in the first place?

I didn’t even protest its publication in the first place. But you can’t have your cake and eat it too!
The truth is some in our field have engaged in disturbing behavior that shows they lack a most basic commitment to progressive values.
Read 6 tweets
3 Jan 20
Brief timeline of Qassem Soleimani's 62 years of life #Thread

1957 -- born in a tribal Persian-speaking village of Rabor County, southern Kerman province.

1970 -- Downtrodden family meant he joined a cousin in moving to provincial capital of Kerman to work construction.
1975 -- Late-teen Soleimani finds job in Kerman Water Organization. He was something of a local tough, joined the local gym, was not particular religious.
1976 or 77 -- Ends up in circles around Reza Kamyab, a low-level cleric from Gonabad who was an opposition activist. Like many youngsters, he sometimes helps out, without being very political.
Read 20 tweets
3 Jan 20
#Iran's Khamenei now faces a hard point of decision-making.

His base (in Iran and across the region) will call on him to retaliate.

But what retaliation against the world's strongest military power with a reckless "gambler" (to quote Soleimani!) in the White House? #Thread
My cautionary prediction: Khamenei will retaliate not against US bases but something much more limited. Will try to sell it as the #SevereRevenge he promised.

Unlike Trump, Khamenei is prudent and has survived decades at the helm. +
Khamenei has never shown reckless or even bold decision-making. His strong self-preservation instinct has always taken over. An attack on US won't be just reckless but suicidal.

There are, ofc, dangers and things might spiral EVEN out of his hand but I'd say that's unlikely.
Read 9 tweets