The Ayatollah Begs to Differ: The Paradox of Modern Iran

By Hooman Majd

A Los Angeles Times and Economist top booklet of the YearWith a brand new PrefaceThe grandson of an eminent ayatollah and the son of an Iranian diplomat, journalist Hooman Majd is uniquely certified to provide an explanation for modern Iran's advanced and misunderstood tradition to Western readers.The Ayatollah Begs to Differ presents an intimate examine a paradoxical state that's either deeply non secular and hugely cosmopolitan, authoritarian but trained by way of a background of democratic and reformist traditions. Majd deals an insightful journey of Iranian tradition, introducing attention-grabbing characters from all walks of existence, together with zealous executive officers, difficult girl cab drivers, and open-minded, reformist ayatollahs. it really is an Iran that would shock readers and problem Western stereotypes.In his new preface, Majd discusses the Iranian temper in the course of and after the June 2009 presidential election which trigger the biggest highway protests because the revolution that introduced the ayatollahs to strength.

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I've got additionally served on a couple of o ccasions as an unpaid adviser to the Islamic Republic, bringing me into shut touch with Presidents Khatami and Ahmadinejad and nu­ merous contributors in their staffs, who've all contributed to my knowl­ part. I am rather thankful to Pres ident Mohammad Khatami, who took outing of his time table, either in the course of his presidency and after­ ward, to have interaction in lengthy discussions with me and to respond to my many questions, and to his brother (and chi e f of employees) Seyyed Ali Khatami, who spent much more time with me and who brought me to many o ther influential Iranians, such a lot of whom I proceed to talk with regularly. J realized extra concerning the intricacies o f the politics ( and 1I ACKNOWLEDG MENTS the his tory) o f the Islamic Republic from Ali Khatami than i may have from analyzing dozens of books, and he gave me useful classes at the personalities of the characters who make up the ruling elite of Iran. i'm deeply indebted to the previous UN ambassador Mohammad Javad Zarif for his prepared insights (and his persistence with me) and to the ambass adors H ossein Fereidoun, Sadeq Kharrazi, and M ehdi Danesh Yazdi, all of whom contributed to my figuring out o f the politics o f the Islamic Republic. i am additionally thankful to overseas M inister Manouchehr Mottaki for the time he put aside to fulfill with me on his visits to manhattan. as well as thos e who're already named as characters in numerous chapters, i want t o thank the subsequent individuals in Iran, in no par­ ticular order, for his or her assistance and their contributions to my knowl aspect: Ali Ziaie, Mohammad Ziaie, Amir Khosro Etemadi, Seyyed Hossein Khatami, M aryam Majd, Mohammad Mir Ali Mohammadi, and M ehrdad Khaj enouri. ultimately, i would prefer to thank my editor, Kristine Puopolo, and my agent, Lindsay Edgecombe, and her colleague James Levine for his or her exertions in making this a readable ebook. And, in fact, due to my fa­ ther, Nasser Majd, and my mom, Mansoureh Assar, for what they have taught me; and to Karri J inkins, Davitt Sigerson, Michael Zilkha, Se­ lim Zilkha, Simon Van Booy, Daniel Feder, Eddie Stern, Michael Hals band, Paul Werner, Suzy Hansen, Roger Trilling, Glenn O ' Brien, and Ken Browar. Preface to the Rnchor Books version On June 1 2, 2009, Iran held a presidential election, person who was once to be a referendum on 4 years of President Ahmadinej ad's rule. The re sults s tunned such a lot observers, as they typically do in Iranian elec­ tions, yet importantly, this time they shocked Irani ans, too, resulting in road p rotests, a brutal crackdown via the govt., and the deaths of normal Iranians who weren't protesting their procedure of govern­ ment, however the approach during which they believed the election were stolen. i used to be once more in Iran within the weeks sooner than the elections, and my ob servations o f Iran's Islamic demo cracy, one that I in part describe during this ebook as resulting in the shock yet reasonable election o f Mahmoud Ah­ madinej advert in 2005 , strengthened my trust that alterations, social and po­ litical, are less than means in Iran.

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