Iran’s parliamentary elections Friday strengthen hardliners after hundreds of opposition candidates barred

debkafile reports: The opposition “reformist” factions can hope for 30 seats at best in the 290-member legislature, after the unelected Council for the Preservation of the Constitution barred some 1,700 of their candidates. This left some of Iran’s 30 provinces with no contenders.
Dominated by Revolutionary Guards ex-officers, Iran’s next parliament will therefore act as rubber stamp for the extremist “conservative” camp headed by president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
As DEBKA-Net-Weekly reported, the hard-line president has removed or muzzled the last remnants of opposition impeding his plans for total domination of the state through the Revolutionary Guards. After rigging the general election, he will be free to further nurture his personality cult and ride on toward a nuclear bomb in defiance of sanctions and free of military threat – except possibly from Israel. Iran’s extremist rulers are convinced that by intransigence they have more to gain from the West and the US in particular than by submission. North Korea is their example.
Iran’s 43 million eligible voters will have lost their parliamentary voice for protesting Ahmadinejad’s failure to rein in galloping inflation, rampant unemployment, fuel shortages and the growing gap between rich and poor – all of which he has repeatedly pledged to remedy. A widespread boycott of the polls is their only recourse until the presidential election next year.

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