Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei has put an end to the negotiation issue with the United States when he said, “There will be neither negotiation nor war with the United States.” However, reports confirm that Rouhani’s government is seeking to open secret channels to negotiate with officials in the US administration in an effort to reach an agreement that could save the Iranian government from a failure that staying in power might be its price.

In his recent remarks, Khamenei has started a new game with the United States on the one hand, and with President Rouhani and his supporters on the other. He blocked the way for Rouhani’s team for conducting any dialogue with the United States, while presenting himself to the world as a strongman who is resisting the US policies but has no desire for war. But the truth is that there is a hidden race between Khamenei’s team on one hand and Rouhani’s one on the other to start a negotiation with the United States and reach an agreement that prevents the collapse of the state and the regime.

Since Iran has relinquished 50% of its right in the Caspian Sea to the neighboring countries, especially Russia, when it signed the Convention on the legal regime of the Caspian Sea recently, according to the Russian national, Rajab Safarov, it is also ready to make extra concessions to the United States in order to reach an agreement that lift the sanctions. However, the internal Iranian dispute lies with the Iranian side that has the right to conclude this deal. This is a hidden dispute between the Iranian government and the Revolutionary Guard, which is still dominated by the Iranian Supreme Leader, based on authority and the political and economic hegemony as well as whom can make sovereign decisions.

The Revolutionary Guard is currently seeking through its leaders and media to promote this restriction, and to confirm that this position is a new phase launched by the Supreme Leader that prevents any internal rhetoric calling for negotiations with Washington and Thus cutting the way for Rouhani, and punishing those who still prefer to negotiate with the US under the current difficult circumstances experienced Iran is going through. The Revolutionary Guard is also trying to emphasize that the deadline given by the Supreme Leader to the current that is calling for rapprochement with the West has passed, especially as this is supported by a similar position by Khamenei when he previously refused to negotiate with the US, and attributed all the problems and crises of the country to the failure of Rouhani’s government in running the country stressing that the crises of the country caused by mismanagement, and not by any US sanctions.

The Revolutionary Guard now wants to promote the idea that negotiation with America is over. This may mean abandoning the government of President Hassan Rouhani, which used negotiation with the West and concluding a nuclear deal as a slogan in which it won the elections twice in a row, as well as blaming all internal problems to this government and not to sanctions.

This means that the Revolutionary Guard has intentions to overthrow the Rouhani by preventing him from negotiating with Washington and holding him responsible for all the crises of the country, and then bringing in a hardline president under its control, and does not dispute with it in the most important and serious matters, especially who is going to inherit the post of the Iranian Supreme Leader after Khamenei’s death. Thus, the Revolutionary Guard guarantees its control over the country in all aspects, especially economic and political, which Rouhani sought during his mandate to reduce it and give part of it to the Office of the Presidency.

These intentions have also been confirmed by a report recently published by Amad News website that the Revolutionary Guard has stockpiled about $ 40 billion of oil revenues at Payam airport to smuggle them if any revolution erupted in Iran or to use these money to overthrow Rouhani’s government and appoint a one that it can be dominated by the Revolutionary Guard and the hardline movement.

Al Mezmaah Studies & Research Centre

Augut 16, 2018