Ask The Leveretts Anything: Will Iran Stay A Theocracy?


During the Iranian uprising of 2009, the Dish continuously clashed with Flynt and Hillary Mann Leverett, the most well-known skeptics of the Green Movement. The husband and wife team continue to blog at Going to Tehran. Watch their previous videos hereherehere, here, here and here. In an excerpt from their new book, they touched on Western conceptions of the Islamic Republic:

In the more than thirty years since the Iranian Revolution, Western analysts have routinely depicted the Islamic Republic as an ideologically driven, illegitimate, and deeply unstable state.  From their perspective, Iran displayed its fanatical character early on, first in the hostage crisis of 1979-81, and shortly afterward with the deployment of teenage soldiers in ‘human wave’ attacks against Iraqi forces during the 1980s.  Supposedly the same Shi’a ‘cult of martyrdom’ and indifference of casualties persist in a deep attachment to suicide terrorism that would, if Iran acquired nuclear weapons, end in catastrophe.  Allegations of the Iranian government’s ‘irrationality’ are inevitably linked to assertions that it is out to export its revolution across the Middle East by force, is hell-bent on the destruction of Israel, and is too dependent for its domestic legitimacy on anti-Americanism to contemplate improving relations with the United States.

Update from an Iranian reader:

This is providing a platform for blatant lies, unbalanced by reality. I want you to talk to these guys with a straight face when they say that Iran is not a theocracy, or that women have great rights in Iran. My cousins are Bahaii’s and their kids are not allowed to go to school. They’re not allowed to have regular jobs. If this isn’t a theocracy then what is it? Some haven for women when they rape underage girls before they execute them! I’m really pissed at you guys right now. Shameful! Some idiots might watch these videos and believe it’s true.