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Iran’s defiant regime has continued to advance its nuclear program and military buildup despite UN sanctions and growing international isolation. Tehran has welcomed the popular uprisings sweeping the Arab countries of the Middle East as an “Islamic awakening” while vigorously repressing democratic opposition forces at home. But the regime’s systematic repression has failed to destroy the opposition Green Movement, which continues to be a thorn in its side.
In recent weeks, the regime has suffered from rising internal tensions amid signs of a rift between President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and the Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Ahmadinejad’s power has been undermined by political infighting and the arrests of some of his allies. How will intensifying political friction within the regime and widespread opposition to it among Iran’s long-suffering people affect Iran’s future? What can the United States do to encourage a democratic transition in Iran? Our panel of experts will examine these and other questions.
More About the Speakers
Ex-CIA spy and author of A Time to Betray
Dr. Kenneth Katzman
Specialist in Middle East Affairs, Congressional Research Service
Dr. Walid Phares
Author of The Coming Revolution: Struggle for Freedom in the Middle East
President and CEO, Foundation for Democracy in Iran
Senior Research Fellow for Middle Eastern Affairs