The infighting amongst the Iranian factions is intensifying as the presidential election draws near and state media outlets are warning that these divisions could further push the people into protests that might bring down the entire system.
On Wednesday, the Etemad daily compared the elections to a tsunami, indicating that the authorities will not see the danger until it is too late and called on them to try and settle the waves to “avoid a political tsunami”. The paper then compared increased social hatred of the ruling system to water building up behind a dam, with the reservoir filled completely by election night, and then being destroyed soon after.
This should not be surprising. Over the past four years, the Iranian people have held three major protests that rejected the false hardliner/moderate dichotomy, chanting “reformists, hardliner, the game is over”, because there is no real difference between the two factions when it comes to oppression of and stealing from the people. Already, this led to the lowest turnout since the 1979 revolution in the last parliamentary elections.
Even the Sharq daily has admitted that so-called reformist candidates will fail in this election, rejecting Mostafa Tajzadeh’s claims that the current system can be changed through elections by stating that no president would be able to make those sweeping changes because the system itself prevents it, not least because Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei actually selects the candidates.
The paper acknowledged that the public’s expectations have increased and that revolution, rather than reform, is the only way to meet the demands of the people.
One thing is for sure, the mullahs’ disastrous policies have led to economic and social crises, which caused this restive atmosphere in the country.
The Arman daily wrote: “The economic pressure has infuriated the people. The government, instead of providing support packages, forgiving taxes and duties, and lowering the prices of basic goods, is seeking to raise taxes, making goods, electricity, and water more expensive. While people are under heavy economic pressure, organizations and economic complexes [are] above the law, which has been collecting property and assets under different names for four decades, do not pay taxes, do not audit. They are supposed to help the oppressed. But when and how?”
While Hamdeli warned that social consequences should be a bigger concern for a low turnout at the polls than political consequences, saying that people are frustrated with the situation and want to improve it.