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Behnam Ben Taleblu on the Elections in Iran

July 10 @ 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

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On Friday, the people of Iran went to the polls and elected the “moderate reformer” candidate Masoud Pezeshkian, defeating Ayatollah Khamenei’s favored candidate, Saeed Jalili, in a race to replace former President Ebrahim Raisi, who died in a helicopter crash on May 19th.  The election saw a surge in turnout, with 53 per cent of the population voting for him.Pezeshkian, a 69 year old former heart surgeon , has promised to “open up to the West”,  and to “bring new hope for diplomacy with Iran.” However, he has said, “With the one exception of Israel.”What are the implications for the Iranian nuclear program? How will this effect the proxy war that Iran has been waging against the state of Israel, using  Hamas, Hezbollah and the Houthis?   How much autonomy will he actually have from Ayatollah Khameini? How much autonomy from the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps will Mr. Pezeshkian actually have?  Will Mr. Pezeshkian upend the Islamic Republic’s relationship with Russia, China and North Korea?Is Mr. Pezeshkian simply a “wolf in sheep’s clothing” vetted by the Iranian Guardian Council, or an actual reformer?

Here to answer those questions and more is Benham Ben Taleblu.

About this speaker: Behnam Ben Taleblu is a senior fellow at FDD where he focuses on Iranian security and political issues. Behnam previously served as a research fellow and senior Iran analyst at FDD. Prior to his time at FDD, Behnam worked on non-proliferation issues at an arms control think-tank in Washington. Leveraging his subject-matter expertise and native Farsi skills, Behnam has closely tracked a wide range of Iran-related topics including: nuclear non-proliferation, ballistic missiles, sanctions, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, the foreign and security policy of the Islamic Republic, and internal Iranian politics. Frequently called upon to brief journalists, congressional staff, and other Washington-audiences, Behnam has also testified before the U.S. Congress and Canadian Parliament.

His analysis has been quoted in The Washington PostThe Wall Street JournalReutersFox NewsThe Associated Press, and Agence France-Presse, among others. Additionally, he has contributed to or co-authored articles for Foreign AffairsForeign PolicyFox NewsThe HillWar on the RocksThe National Interest, and U.S. News & World Report. Behnam has appeared on a variety of broadcast programs, including BBC NewsFox NewsCBS InteractiveC-SPAN, and Defense News. Behnam earned his MA in International Relations from The University of Chicago, and his BA in International Affairs and Middle East Studies from The George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs.

 

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Date:
July 10
Time:
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
Webinar Category:
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