Iran's Quiet Coup

Morteza Nikoubaz / Reuters

Their prayers have been answered The Revolutionary Guards wanted President Ahmadinejad re-elected not least to protect their vast commercial interests

When Iran's parliament confirmed 18 of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's 21 candidates for his Cabinet in early September, only those who sift the tea leaves of Iranian politics noticed the confirmation of Haidar Moslehi, a member of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), as Minister of Intelligence and Security. For decades, the ministry represented a check on the IRGC's rise toward becoming Iran's most powerful institution: domestic intelligence was out of the guards' reach. With Moslehi's appointment, there is nobody left to guard the guards.

The guards' ascendance, likened by some to a bloodless military coup, has been one...

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