On June 12, 2009, millions of Iranians, went to the polls to elect their next president. Unlike the 2005 presidential elections where 48% of the electorate voted in run-off elections to choose Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, many more voters were expected to and did turn-out to vote against his disastrous domestic and foreign policies which have seen Iran isolate itself from the western world and have seen economic failure resulting in unemployment spiraling out of control.
However, even before a tally of the votes could be taken Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his supporters declared victory with 63% of the popular vote. With lightning speed his rival’s campaign headquarters were closed, many of their leaders were arrested and a heavy police and paramilitary presence was brought into the streets. Are these the actions of someone who has won a free and fair election?
Although the world does not yet realize it, on June 13th we witnessed an unprecedented coup d’état veiled in the guise of a popular election. If this coup is allowed to succeed and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corp (IRGC) are allowed to consolidate their power, not only will they pose a danger to the Iranian people, but will also become a much greater threat to the outside world.
The implications of this coup are far-reaching. Whereas before the hard-line elements in the IRGC were held in check by the Supreme Leader and the clergy, over the last four years they have come to assume a position of immense power in Iran.
This coup represents the consummation of their new position in the state, and has grave implications for the Iranian people, and the Western world.
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