The Battle Over Higher Education in Iran

by Mohammad Ali Kadivar | published February 20, 2014

The educated middle class that played an influential role in electing Hassan Rouhani to the Iranian presidency in June 2013 is anxious to see his promises of “prudence and hope” fulfilled. One area that Rouhani’s administration is expected to reform is higher education, which was targeted for political and intellectual purges under the hardline conservative administrations of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Handshakes in Geneva

by The Editors | published November 30, 2013

Everyone is happy with the interim agreement reached with Iran in Geneva on November 23 -- that is, everyone who really wants to defuse the tensions over Iran’s nuclear research program.

Keddie, Religion and Politics in Iran

by Eric Hooglund
published in MER125

Nikki Keddie, Religion and Politics in Iran: Shiism from Quietism to Revolution (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1983).

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Rafsanjani Discusses Timing of Next Iranian Offensive

published in MER125

Excerpts from the Friday prayer speech of Hojjat-ol-Islam Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani, the Imam’s representative to the Supreme Defense Council, and Speaker of the Majles, broadcast on Tehran radio, July 6, 1984.

Chronicle of the Gulf War

published in MER125

The war between Iran and Iraq is approaching its fourth anniversary. In its duration, large numbers of casualties and physical damage, this war already ranks as one of the most serious armed conflicts since World War II. Several Iranian cities and numerous towns have been destroyed, and the city of Basra, Iraq’s second largest, has been under serious threat for a year or more. Both countries have extensive industrial and oil exporting facilities in the war zone which have been heavily damaged in the fighting. Economic losses in both countries are calculated in many tens of billions of dollars. Iran claimed in May 1983 that it had suffered $90 billion in economic damages.

Kapuscinski, Shah of Shahs

by Fred Halliday
published in MER141


Ryszard Kapuscinski, Shah of Shahs (San Diego: Harcourt, Brace, Jovanovich, 1985).


Major Kurdish Organizations in Iran

by Martin Van Bruinessen
published in MER141

Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iran (KDPI)

An "Electoral Uprising" in Iran

by Kevan Harris | published July 19, 2013

“Last night I sat in traffic with my wife and daughters for three hours,” a Tehran office manager recounted, “and the car did not move one meter.” The day before, Iranians had chosen Hassan Rouhani as the Islamic Republic’s seventh president. “All the cars honked their horns, and people danced and celebrated next to us in the streets.” The last time the manager had beheld such a scene was in June of 2009. “Four years ago I was also in my car with my wife and daughters, and traffic did not move, and cars were honking. But that time security men on motorbikes rode through the street smashing windows with their batons.” The contentious events of 2009 not only ensured four more years for Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in the president’s office but were also heralded as signaling the death of reformist politics in Iran. Yet as another presidential election approached, the three-decade political improvisation called the Islamic Republic once again went off script.

Images of Iran

by Fred Halliday
published in MER143

Roy Mottahedeh, The Mantle of the Prophet: Learning and Power in Modern Iran (NY: Simon & Schuster, 1985).

Donne Raffat, The Prison Papers of Bozorg Alavi: A Literary Odyssey (Syracuse, NY: Syracuse University Press, 1985).

Haleh Afshar, editor, Iran: A Revolution in Turmoil (Albany, NY: SUNY Press, 1985).

Barry M. Rosen, editor, Iran Since the Revolution: Internal Dynamics, Regional Conflict and the Superpowers (New York: Columbia University Press, 1985).


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From the Editors

by The Editors
published in MER143

Top Reagan aides from the National Security Council and the CIA fly secretly to Iran atop crates of missiles, Bible in one hand and cake in the other. The image aptly captures the bizarre and dangerous character of Washington’s policies in the Middle East and Central America. Two of the men on the Tehran mission -- Robert McFarlane and Oliver North -- played central roles in earlier military interventions in both regions. McFarlane was the chief strategist on the ground in Beirut in September 1983, calling in the big guns of the USS New Jersey to save the beleaguered Phalange regime of Amin Gemayel Some 241 US Marines paid for McFarlane’s swagger with their lives a month later when a Lebanese suicide attack demolished their barracks. Fellow Marine Lt.Col.