Dabashi: “Iran: The garrison state conducts a parliamentary election”

Al-Jazeera English Excerpts: “If Iranian national politics took the centre stage and overshadowed the regional geopolitics shortly after the presidential election of June 2009, it is now the turn of the geopolitics of the region, dominated by the unfolding Arab Spring and the counter-revolutionary machinations of Saudi Arabia and its other reactionary regional forces, to overwhelm Iranian national politics at the threshold of the new parliamentary elections…. As the two garrison states of the Islamic Republic and Israel stare each other down, the fake shows of democracy in one or the other categorically fail to conceal the fact that the two gravest dangers for the unfolding democratic aspirations of the region have scarcely anything to offer them except a menacing model of status quo ante.  But if the Islamic Republic and Israel at least go through the show of a democracy that is belied by widespread dissent in one and by the Palestinian predicament in the other, the tribal patrimonialism of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will have to be recognised as the grandest joke to pose as the promoter of democracy in the region.”

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