Studying Iran’s rising social situation since the 2009 uprising draws our attention to important achievements.
During this period, several nationwide uprisings have occurred: December 2009, December-January 2017-2018, November 2019, in addition to these important uprisings, other important protests have occurred whose importance is not less than these three nationwide uprisings, such as the Saravan uprising and the Khuzestan uprising.
In a general view of the curve of this series of uprisings, Iran watchers have come to a few conclusions:
In this series of nationwide uprisings and other small protests executed by different strata, the goals of these movements were livelihood issues or due to the outcome of the elections, but all of them changed their paths from such demands to calls for the mullahs’ overthrow and regime change.
Precisely said, the people have targeted the regime’s head, the supreme leader, and his repressive force, the Revolutionary Guards, and the regime’s infamous Ministry of Intelligence (MOIS).
The shared characteristic of all of them was their fast expansion from limited places and classes to the entire nation all over the country. Contrary to what the regime has tried to show these protests are ethnic. This shows that Iran’s people are deeply political, and their struggle is political and not just over economic and livelihood demands.
The government has answered all the protests with force, torture and executions, and the blockage of the Internet and other public information utilities.
The other thing that has changed over time is that the protests have become more organized and as we have witnessed in the November 2019 protests, despite its expansion none of the people’s private properties and other centers like supermarkets were attacked or destroyed and the only places which were attacked were the regime’s bases, stations, and organization buildings. This is something that the regime fears most because it is showing that the people are seeking the regime’s fall, despite being hungry and poor.
One of the achievements of these protests is the forcing of the regime to remove its deceptive mask of tolerating a reformist opposition in selecting one of the most notorious persons in Iran, Ebrahim Raisi, notorious as the ‘butcher of Tehran,’ as the regime’s president.
This is a crystal-clear sign that the regime is on the path of its fall, having no other choice than to prepare for the final confrontation with the people.
The state-run daily Shargh collected all the regime’s factions under the ‘believers of the Islamic Republic’ and confessed that none of them has the power to make any changes and wrote about them:
“The proximity of domestic criticizers to the country’s political and economic issues and awareness of people’s demands have given them the belief that by compensating their past mistakes, they can be again the voice of the people.”
This paper has an interesting opinion about the leading faction which are the principlists tied with the supreme leader:
“In the vacuum between these movements, the principlists, who, with their free wings and self-confidence derived from state and parliamentary power, think they can stabilize the situation and are consolidating their positions by eliminating rivals and opponents and by kicking them out, and with political and social restrictions and relying on the fact that in the absence of hegemony they can persuade the people with authority. More than wanting to be the voice of the people, they are trying to create ways to control the people.”
In the 2021 presidential elections, the people demonstrated to the regime that they had passed all the government’s struggles regarding the consolidation of the status quo and were in the spectrum of the supporters of the regime change. This path will become more evident over time.