RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – How firmly does the mullah regime in Tehran sit in the saddle? People are increasingly dissatisfied with the regime. The growing protests could become dangerous for the Islamist leadership, especially since inflation is not the only factor behind them.
Across Iran, people are demonstrating. On the one hand, because of the sharply rising prices for food and energy; on the other hand, there is also growing discontent with the Islamist mullah leadership and the corruption among the Islamic Revolutionary Guards. The latter have successively taken over economic control in the Western Asian country in recent years.
People have taken to the streets in cities across the country to protest the crippling political and economic situation. According to unofficial reports, security forces have killed at least four people.
(There is always less fuel)
The demonstrators, who come from all walks of life, are shouting slogans directed at the top echelons of the clerical system, including the Islamic Republic’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, and President Ebrahim Raisi.
The CIA and Mossad are also believed to support the protests to weaken the unpopular regime.
(Looting of stores in Iran)
In cities where protests are ongoing, the government is either cutting or partially throttling the Internet to control the spread of news. The unrest began after the government cut subsidies for staple foods such as cooking oil, eggs, and milk last Wednesday.
Prices for cooking oil, for example, rose by more than 400 percent overnight, and those for flour by 500 percent. The slogans prevalent in the protests, such as “Down with Khamenei! Down with the dictator!” and “We don’t want the mullah to rule!” suggest that the protest against the ailing economy is following another main demand: the overthrow of the system.
(Iran is set to be the first country to roll out a food rationing scheme based on new biometric IDs.)
Observers believe that the current protests are even more significant than those of 2019, when the uprisings were concentrated mainly in the capital, Tehran. Back then three years ago, hundreds of people were killed and thousands of protesters arrested in the anti-government protests, according to unofficial figures.
Exact numbers are impossible to obtain because of censorship. But now, people are protesting in smaller towns as well because prices are rising immeasurably, and the ruling elites continue to wallow in prosperity.
(There are reports of live ammunition and internet shutdowns to prevent the dissemination of information)
Although the number of demonstrators is still manageable, the more the economic situation worsens, the greater the resentment among the population, mainly because they know that the elites and their families are guaranteed not to go hungry and do not have to worry about empty supermarkets.