Amir Ahmadi Arian

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An anti-American protest on Wednesday in front of the former United States Embassy in Tehran after President Trump said he was abrogating the Iran nuclear agreement. Credit European Pressphoto Agency, via Shutterstock

The July 2015 nuclear deal officially ended Iran’s isolation and economic punishment, but the comprehensive sanctions that the country had endured for nearly a decade continued to take a toll.

Those sanctions have profoundly damaged the Iranian economy. The government — hemmed in by domestic opposition and its own corruption — has done little to repair it. There have been encouraging signs of life since the nuclear deal, but they turned out to be short-lived.

President Trump announced on Tuesday that he would withdraw from the nuclear agreement and reinstate sanctions that had been lifted as part of it. This is not just a potentially fatal blow to the accord between Iran and five world powers.…  Seguir leyendo »

Unrest in the streets of Tehran on December 30, 2017. Credit Kyodo News via Getty Images

This is the third mass uprising in Iran in my lifetime. In July 1999, the peaceful protest of students over freedom of speech spread into a considerable uprising. In June 2009, people took to streets to demand a recount of disputed votes in the presidential election, which began the Green Movement. Those were both pushes for civil rights, demanding more flexibility and accountability from the government. They took place largely in Tehran, and attracted the middle class and the university educated. Both were peaceful and persistently nonviolent.

The current unrest looks different. So far, the middle class and the highly educated have been more witnesses than participants.…  Seguir leyendo »