Garrett Nada's Blog

Part 1: History of Arms Embargos on Iran

May 11, 2020
The international community has long been concerned about Iran’s military arsenal. Since the 1979 revolution, the United States and the United Nations have imposed several embargoes on Tehran’s purchase of conventional weapons. The last U.N. embargo on Iran’s purchase of conventional weapons was…

The COVID-19 Blow to Iran’s Economy

April 29, 2020
The coronavirus outbreak has created new challenges and exacerbated old ones for Iran’s economy. The outbreak of COVID-19, first announced on February 19, forced businesses nationwide to close just before Nowruz, the Persian New Year, on March 20. Trade slowed due to border closures. By mid-April,…

Iran’s Oil Price Plummets

April 22, 2020
Already hard hit by U.S. sanctions, Iran faced a stunning decline in the price of oil – a major source of revenue – as an unexpected byproduct of the coronavirus pandemic. By April 1, the price of Iran’s heavy crude fell to below $14 per barrel — down from $44 or more per barrel in February. The…

Rouhani: “Necessary Decisions” on COVID-19

April 1, 2020
Six weeks after the first COVID-19 deaths, President Hassan Rouhani said that Iran was successfully containing the outbreak. “Fortunately, the statistics I read last night from all the provinces shows a downward trend in all provinces,” he said at a cabinet meeting on April 1. Rouhani claimed that…

U.S. Charges Iran Lying on COVID-19 Facts

March 24, 2020
On March 23, the State Department issued a fact sheet disputing Iran’s claims on the scope of its COVID-19 crisis. It came one day after Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei rejected U.S. aid to help combat the coronavirus outbreak. Khamenei also had cited a baseless conspiracy theory that COVID-…

Khamenei Refuses U.S. Help on COVID-19

March 23, 2020
In a televised address, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei rejected U.S. aid to help combat the coronavirus outbreak. “You might give us a medicine that would spread the disease even more or make it last longer,” he said on March 22. Khamenei also cited a baseless conspiracy theory that COVID-19…

Iran’s Roster of Political Influence Abroad

March 9, 2020
Since the 1980s, Iran has forged a network of political alliances across the Middle East that now give it more influence than its Gulf rivals and the United States. Tehran has exploited local grievances, sectarian identity, and conflicts to create or foster political parties, most visibly in…

2020 Parliamentary Election Results

February 24, 2020
Conservative and hardline factions, including candidates closely aligned with the Revolutionary Guards, won a sweeping victory in parliamentary elections held on February 21. They won 221 of the 290 seats, more than doubling their presence in parliament; 83 were elected in the 2016 poll, according…

Issues in Iran’s Parliamentary Election

February 5, 2020
By Garrett Nada Iran’s 2020 parliamentary election, following months of internal protests and showdowns with the outside world, will be a stark contrast to the last poll in 2016, when Iranians believed they were emerging from years of economic sanctions and political isolation. Voters go to the…

Trends in Parliamentary Elections 1980-2016

January 30, 2020
Since the 1979 revolution, Iran's politics have changed dramatically from a one-party system heavily dominated by clerics to a multi-party system dominated by lay politicians. Iran’s parliament is illustrative. Iranians will head to the polls on Feb. 21, 2020 to elect the 11th parliament. The key…