Distrust between the Iranian citizens and their government and regime is dominating the Iranian interior nowadays. Specialized reports stress that the gap between citizens and official bodies is gradually increasing, especially with the unprecedented deterioration in living and economic conditions, amid popular outrage against government decisions and regime’s policies and their failure in addressing or even reducing aggravated crises and problems.

The lack of confidence in the Iranian government is due to several reasons, the most important of which is the failure of its plans and programs aimed at curbing the collapse of the national currency, reducing price and compensating the shortage of commodities. In this, officials offered proposals and several economic plans in recent months to control the price of hard currencies and gold and prevent the deterioration of the national currency. However, despite all that, one dollar was exchanged for up to 180,000 Rial over the past few weeks, and the situation in the gold market remained volatile. Even replacing the central bank governor and the establishment of the parallel currency market did not affect in any way this dire situation, it is even becoming worse, despite a slight improvement in the price of the Iranian riyal against the dollar in recent hours, which, according to experts, will not last long.

In addition, consumer-protection and judicial institutions have always promised to fight rising prices and reassured people that all basic commodities will become available. But the reality that the Iranian citizen can feel on the ground confirms that these promises have not been implemented, and that they remained merely claims that were not translated into reality as the Iranian markets are still suffering from a shortage of many basic commodities, especially that for children, amid high prices in most of the available ones, with the government’s inability to address or limit monopoly that is increasing dramatically. This had led that the Iranian government completely losing its prestige before the people who witness their problems and crises getting worse day by day instead of being solved.

Amid the increased unrest and concern that is gripping the Iranian citizen, we see how people line up in queues in front of the shops due to their concern over securing their needs and how the shortages of some commodities and basic needs continue. In the midst of these very bad conditions, officials from the government and the regime come forward to make matters worse and offer unprecedented solutions that would undermine the dignity of the Iranian citizens and ridicule their minds, such as the solution presented by Khamenei’s adviser Ali Akbar Velayati, who called on the Iranian people to wear apron and eat dry bread to meet current conditions. This has sparked widespread popular anger that criticizes the approach of the Iranian government and the apathy of its officials and their failure to address the affairs of the country, especially when taking into consideration wasting hundreds of billions of dollars by the regime and the Revolutionary Guard on foreign interventions and supporting and funding groups loyal to the Iranian regime at a time that the Iranian people are close to famine due to deteriorating living conditions.

So far, the Iranian government has implemented six development projects, but the real achievements have remained worthless and didn’t exceed the value of a few slogans aimed to deceive the people. What used to look different every time is just the way how these slogans are delivered to the people, such as the claims of privatization and free market economy and many others. However, on the ground, Iran is not willing to give up the economy and will not be able to curb the Revolutionary Guard’s influence on the country’s economy. This in turn led that the government losing its credibility before citizens. Moreover, the extent of the contradictions between the statements of the government’s officials and those of the regime has been the most important reasons that led to the loss of Iranian citizens confidence in the government and the regime alike. While several Iranian officials try to reassure citizens that things are well, and that the government will overcome the crisis, we see that Eshaq Jahangiri, First Vice-President of Iran, affirming that the country is facing difficult times and that the people are under pressure and suffering huge difficulties.

By monitoring the reaction of the Iranian street to these facts, it is clear that people have reached the conclusion that either the government has no ability to run the country, or in case it exists, it is so weak and helpless, while officials do not care about any consequences or the impact that their erroneous and random decisions might leave. This government is even incapable of accurately analyzing the economic and social realities of Iran’s society today. However, some believe that the Iranian government lacks any authority to run the country under the hegemony of the Supreme Leader and the Revolutionary Guard. Those who do not care about the Iranian interior as they are tied to foreign schemes and projects that have wasted the country’s resources and still insist on these policies that will necessarily lead to the destruction of the country.

Al Mezmaah Studies & Research Centre

October 7,  2018