The protests that hit Iran after the death of Mahsa Amini are the result of a volcano that has been simmering for a long time under the surface, according to Abbas Milani, professor at Stanford University and former professor at the University of Tehran. In an interview with N1, Milani analyses the events that led to the protests, the actions of Ali Khamenei's regime, as well as the situation in the Middle East and the role of Iran in the war in Ukraine.
Speaking about the current situation in Iran, Milani said this is not what the Iranians decided when they removed Shah Reza Pahlavi and embraced the Islamic Revolution led by Ayatollah Khomeini.
People signed for a democratic republic in 1979 but what they got, he stressed, was clerical despotism.
What he finds significant for the development of the situation in the past months are the voices of dissatisfaction that are occasionally heard from the top of the regime itself, such as the one that came from the sister of the supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, but also the daughter of the former Iranian president and one of the most influential Iranians, Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani.
Milani deems that this mostly shows a profound level of disagreement within the governing elite.
Watch the full interview in the video.