Revolution in Iran is Possible

Iran expert Dr. Eldad Pardo tells Arutz Sheva that he is optimistic that the current riots in Iran could lead to a regime change.

Elad Benari , | updated: 3:16 AM

Protesters in Iran
Protesters in Iran
Flash 90

As violent protests continue to shake up the Arab world and specifically Iran, the West has expressed optimism that there will be a regime change in the Islamic Republic.

But is there room for hope? According to Dr. Eldad Pardo, an expert on Iran and a researcher at the Truman Institute at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, there certainly is.

Pardo told Arutz Sheva’s Hebrew website on Wednesday that there are significant differences between Iran's current protests and the failed wave of riots that occurred there following the elections in 2009. He said he believes one of the main changes lies in the nature of the Egyptian revolution.

“The Egyptian revolution was a democratic revolution and not an Islamist revolution, and until now what has prevented the demonstrators in Iran from going all the way was the fear of a new dictatorship. But Egypt has shown them that they now have the possibility of a different revolution,” said Pardo. He added that there has also been a change in the public mindset in Iran: Until now it was assumed that demonstrations should be carried out peacefully - and therefore they achieved nothing, but it is now understood that demonstrations can and should aim for a goal.

Dr. Pardo also believes that the success of Israel and the United States in their struggle against suicide terror attacks has also contributed to the change in the Iranian public’s perception: They see the recent military moves and understand that there is a chance for something significant to occur in the security arena, making them willing to go along with Western concepts.

In addition to the above, Dr. Pardo noted that the Iranian regime's conduct in light of the riots will have an impact on the prospects for change. He highlighted the cracks in the Iranian leadership in response to the riots, and said this encourages the masses in their struggle. He added that this can continue to work so long as the leadership does not unite against the protesters.

He also mentioned the Iranian bitterness in light of the failure of the regime's domestic policy, the perception that the ruling ideology turned out to be a lie, and the moral failures within the leadership. All these encourage the masses to demand change now, and Dr. Pardo believes it may happen.