Radio Free Europe/Radio Free Liberty is reporting that Mahmoud Tehrani, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s nephew, claimed that embattled President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps are the ones in control of Iran’s fractious political system, and suggested Khamenei is only following along to maintain his position.
He said “I think Khamenei — who is my uncle — is either a toy in the hands of Ahmadinejad, [Ayatollah Mesbah Yazdi], and the Revolutionary Guard, or he shares their crimes.”
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“There is nothing he can do. If he backs off from his comments even one step, he will lose his leadership and the whole [conservative] camp will disintegrate.
“I don’t think Ali Khamenei has a lot of power, it’s likely that all of this is being run by the Revolutionary Guard, and Ali Khamenei is forced to deal with the [Revolutionary Guard] in order not to lose his role as the supreme leader. He can’t do anything and he won’t say anything [substantial]. Since June 14 we haven’t heard anything from Khamenei other than repeating Ahmadinejad’s comments.”