Iran. The year was marked by a dramatic power struggle
between the country's conservative and liberal camps. In
April, one of Liberal President Mohammad Khatami's closest
ally was arrested, Tehran's popular mayor Gholamhossain
Karbaschi, accused of corruption. Clashes broke out in
Tehran where liberally-minded students clashed with
conservatives. At the June trial, Karbaschi was convicted of
embezzlement and mistreatment, etc. to five years in prison
and 2.6 million. kr. in fines. Karbaschi appealed against
the judgment. Another victim in the power struggle became
Liberal Interior Minister Hojatolislam Abdollah Nouri. The
parliament, dominated by conservative members, dismissed him
in June, after which Khatami appointed him President of
Development and Social Affairs, a newly created post. In
July, the former Vice President of Legal Affairs, Abdolvahed
Mousavi-Lari, was named Nouri's successor as Minister of the
Interior. Mousavi-Lari stated that he would continue the
Countryaah, the Liberal camp was hit by yet another setback in
November, when the Conservatives won the election to the
so-called expert council that appoints the country's
spiritual leader. Some 60 of the expert council's 86 members
became conservative, 13 liberal and the rest took a middle
position. A large number of liberal candidates had been
stopped by the guards' councils who are tasked with
approving candidates, and many Iranians demonstrated their
displeasure by abstaining - voting was 46%. The conditions
for the country's intellectuals hardened. For several weeks
in November and December, several regime critics were
murdered, including the authors Mohammad Mokhtari and
Mohammad Pouyandeh. For several years, they had fought for
permission to revive the Iranian writers' union that was
banned during the revolution. The government announced that
the murders would be investigated.
The country's first political party since the revolution,
the Solidarity Party of Islamic Iran (also called the
Iranian Unity Party), was approved in February. The party
supports Khatami. Another liberal party, the Party of
Iranian Constitution Servants, was approved in May, and in
December a third, Islamic Iran's co-determination front was
formed, which, however, had not been approved by the end of
Foreign policy contradicted the Western world. In an
interview with US broadcaster CNN in January, Khatami spoke
warmly for improved relations with arch-enemy USA. More
conciliatory words were heard in connection with the Soccer
World Cup in France in June when Iran met the US and won by
2-1. After a meeting with Britain's Foreign Minister Robin
Cook in September, I's Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi
announced that his government had no plans to murder British
author Salman Rushdie, who was sentenced to death in 1989 by
then-spiritual leader Ayatolla Ruhollah Khomeyni. Formally,
however, the death sentence cannot be revoked.
I's economic reform program continued, and in August,
Khatami presented plans for limiting the activities of
monopolies, simplifying the bureaucracy in foreign
investment and reforming the tax system. In September,
Parliament decided that cooperatives should start banks in
the country, which, according to analysts, could pave the
way for a commercial banking system.
At least 100 people were killed in April in floods and
To further aggravate the crisis, the Israeli terrorist
organization Mossad on January 11, 2012 executed Iranian
32-year-old chemist Mostafa Ahmadi Roshan by letting his
agents place a magnetic bomb on Roshan's car in Tehran.
Roshan worked at the uranium reprocessing plant in Natanz.
Terrorism came less than 24 hours after Israeli army chief
Benny Gantz threatened Iran with terror. Gantz declared to
an Israeli parliamentary committee: "Compared to Iran, 2012
is a critical year due to its continued nuclearization,
internal changes in the Iranian leadership, increasing
pressure from the international community, and unnatural
events that will hit the country."
Mossad has a longer history of similar terrorist actions
- In January 2010, particle physicist Masoud
Alimohammadi was killed on his way to work when
motorcycle agents placed a magnetic bomb on his car in
northern Tehran. An execution of the same kind as the
execution of Roshan.
- In November 2010, nuclear physicist Majid Shahriari
was assassinated by a similar car bomb in northern
Tehran. Nuclear physicist Fereydoun Abbasi-Davani, who
works for the Iranian Ministry of Defense, is injured
during a similar assassination attempt but survives.
- Scientist Darioush Rezaeinejad is executed by shots
in eastern Tehran.
The Israeli military terror organization "Depth Corps" is
believed to be behind major terrorist acts in Iran:
- In November 2011, a commander in the Iranian
Revolutionary Guard and 16 others die in an explosion in
an ammunition depot near Tehran. The Iranians themselves
call the explosion an "accident", but most people
consider Israel to be behind.
- Two weeks later, a nuclear reprocessing plant
outside Isfahan is hit by a mysterious explosion.
- Another two weeks later, a steel plant linked to the
nuclear program in Yasd is hit by an explosion that
kills 7 workers.
Israel has acknowledged that even if it launches an open
military attack on Iran, it will not be able to put the
country's nuclear program 100% out of the game and is
therefore using terror to hit selected parts and in the hope
of intensifying the situation. The United States and Britain
may be involved in a war against Iran.
In December 2011, the Iranian military brought a North
American drone to land. The US started by claiming it had
crashed, but the Iranians were able to showcase a whole and
unscathed drone. The United States had sent it on a spy
spree over Iran. Iran copied the technology and was able to
showcase its own drones a few years later.