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Iranians challenge a system that knows only a zero-sum game

The sudden fuel price rises imposed overnight on 14/15 November which sparked a wave of protests that swept across Iran, and the brutal repression of those demonstrations, speak volumes about the character of a political system forged from the ruins of the Pahlavi regime in 1979 which soon evolved into the current velayat-e faqih (Rule of the Supreme Jurisprudent). The Islamic Revolution, and the subsequent eight-year war with Iraq, provided a crucible for institutions like the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and bonyads (religious foundations) to develop networks and businesses that go far beyond their military or charitable core.

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