The Controversy Of The Role Of Religion And Power In Iran

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Iran has been a country of controversy for decades. One of the many points of controversy is the role of religion in the Iranian government. The entire government is structured to keep people with similar religious beliefs in power and to allow the government to make decisions based on Shiite principles. This structure was established as a result the 1979 Iranian Revolution where one regime over took another. This change in leadership gave the clergy more power than ever and directly affected foreign relations. Iran has faced the consequences of their Shiite based government through conflict with countries spanning multiple continents, such as Saudi Arabia and the United States. After the Iranian Revolution of 1979, Iran’s government became controlled by religion, causing tense foreign relations. The Iranian government is lead by a religious figure and …show more content…

At the top of Iran's power structure is the Supreme Leader who, according to the constitution, will rule until his death. The current leader is Ayatohllah Ali Khamenei, who appointed himself Supreme Leader after the 1979 Revolution (“The Structure of Power in Iran”). The Supreme Leader is responsible for almost every aspect of the Iranian government. He controls local radio and television, domestic and foreign polices, the armed forces and intelligence and security operations, and he appoints and dismisses members of the judiciary (“The Structure and Power in Iran”). Khamenei is a Shiite Muslim, a branch of Islam that the majority of Iranians practice. Khamenei believes that religion is an essential part of government and "only clerical rule in accordance with Shiite law can create just government in the absence of the Prophet and the Imams"(Cole, Juan). Khamenei has structured the Iranian government to keep himself in power and prohibit anyone with opposing viewpoints to impact

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