The essentiality of economy and the Iranian political mindset

May 25, 2016

TEHRAN – The Supreme Leader on Wednesday accused the United States of spreading Iranophobia with an aim to scare foreign investors from approaching Iran.

But Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s regard for economy has been showing itself in a stronger tone for at least a few years. The Leader has kept naming Iranian years in a message that he delivers to the nation in the very first minute of the New Year. His latest appellations have all been economically-minded, showing a new direction than previous years.

But that is not all. The settlement of an economic outlook in the Iranian political scheme found its most startling embodiment in the landmark nuclear deal that the country made with the world just last year. As much as the deal addressed security concerns of the West, it was economically justified for Iran.

Yet, another very conspicuous demonstration of the economic mindset dates back to 2013, when Hassan Rouhani became president, thanks to his economic agenda announced most outspokenly during the campaign, and the trust that the Iranian body-politic had in his abilities to chisel something out of a defaced collection of business entities and links scattered here and there.

Economy especially grew into an indispensable part of being a powerful nation in the mind of Iranians during the few pre-Rouhani years when unwelcome haphazard changes in the personal and business-related lives of many looked to them as a kind of constant hemorrhage that needed instant care even at a high cost.

That created a sort of collective agreement in people from all walks of life in the country to feel deep in their bones the need for some serious thought about economy. In other words, economy turned into a national discourse that was finding a place among other more ethereal notions of freedom, equality, peace for all, and fighting the ills of the time.

An Iranian saying goes: “The enemy will cause bliss if God so wills.” Looking back to the sanctions time, it seems those years gave Iran some about-face to make it think about things whose lack does not leave room for higher ambitions. Iran has started building up on bread and butter this time a mansion that looks more likely than ever to go high.


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