By: Peymaneh Shafai
A growing number of Iranian officials are voicing major concerns over an explosive atmosphere across the country as public anger escalates among people from all walks of life. The mounting divide among Iran’s social classes, parallel to the regime-linked filthy rich few stealing an alarming amount of money from the overwhelming majority, has many decision-makers in Tehran extremely concerned. These remarks clearly indicate that the ruling mullahs have never intended nor had the ability to tackle the regime’s institutionalized corruption.
Ahmad Alamalhoda, representative of Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei in the city of Mashhad in northeast Iran, vividly expressed his concerns over Iran’s powder keg society. “If the lower class reaches the point of full disappointment, our enemies have achieved their desired results and objectives. This is the enemy’s entire motivation in their economic attacks and sanctions… Provide for the poor and the lower close. They must not become disappointed,” he said on August 12.
It goes without saying that Iranian officials care nothing about the general population. Alamalhoda’s remarks are a reminder of how the December 2017 / January 2018 uprising that took the regime by surprise and spread across the country has been dubbed as the “Uprising of the Hungry.”
While Alamalhoda parrots the regime’s talking point of blaming everything on U.S. sanctions, many other regime officials and insiders have acknowledged the actual reasoning behind Iran’s status quo.
Hamdeli daily referred to the economic crisis and enormous pressure on the lower class in an August 11 piece. “Many economic analysts believe sanctions are not to blame for increasing inflation in the food market. During the previous round of sanctions back in 2011 and 2012, the food market inflation had reached 59 percent. As a result, the reason behind today’s inflation is market mismanagement,” the article reads in part.
Sharq daily sheds light on the ultra-luxurious villas built in an area of Tehran known as ‘Basti Hills.’
“The owners of these mansions are not concerned about being seen. In fact, this type of construction is intended to boast about their property, the likes of which can only be found in myths such as ‘A Thousand and One Nights,’” the article explains. “Do the locals of towns such as Basti Hills not fear those living in our society’s lower class that are becoming poorer and poorer due to the fact that a certain few are taking advantage of the country’s national resources?”
This article, written in this state-run outlet, considers the status quo the immediate result of the regime’s economic policies. “The luxurious lifestyle that is, unfortunately, enjoyed in areas such as Basti Hills is certainly not the result of any particular hard work or effort,” the read adds.
A truly unbiased investigation would unveil how the regime in Iran is riddled with corruption and the regime-linked filthy rich are using massive funds for their own benefits as millions go hungry across the country.
The regime’s own economic experts are referring to the explosive situation in Iran’s society as a result of an increasing divide in Iran’s economic classes. This is the outcome of “unfair distribution of [national] revenue and riches,” according to these experts.
And considering the fact that the government is responsible for fairly distributing the country’s resources and riches, the status quo in Iran is the immediate result of the approach adopted by the mullahs’ regime in its unfair distribution of national revenue.
“Economic divide highest in 16 years,” is the title of another piece in a state-run outlet. “Reviews in this regard indicate the Gini coefficient has been quite significant from 2011 to 2018, marking its highest point in the past 16 years,” the piece reads.
The Gini coefficient is a single number intended to measure the degree of inequality in a certain distribution. It is most often used in economics to measure how far a country’s wealth or income distribution deviates from completely equal distribution.
The Jahan-e Sanat daily voiced concerns in regards to Iran’s “economic fragility” and the social consequences, adding the ruling regime has failed to provide any solutions. “While major economic indicators are showing a move towards recession and a significant financial crisis, despite all this there is no sign of our policymakers taking action to surpass the harsh and peculiar status quo. All the while, evaluations show all economic indicators signaling a worrisome nosedive,” the piece explains.
Ahmad Tavakoli, a member of Iran’s Expediency Council, acknowledges the fact that the regime’s status quo will lead to further divides in public trust towards the mullahs’ establishment. “This divide is not the outcome of actions in the past day or two, or even the past 12 months. This is the result of continuous mismanagement through the past 40 years among the country’s senior officials,” he said.
Tavakoli, known to be close to Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, finalized his recent remarks as: “These are dangerous circumstances.”