Some people on here and Twitter were sure they’d succeed. But they seem to have vanished off the radar in the past couple of days. Few news stories, no updates on /r/worldnews. What happened?
In reality, as I pointed out, they were almost certain to fail. To get a color revolution going, you need a mass movement, some degree of elite defection, and preferably both.
Iran had neither, as perusing the main stories even at the height of the protests several days ago showed:
- University students refusing to trample the US and Israeli flags;
- Sportswoman defection;
- Some protests from actors;
- Anchorwoman resigning and apologizing for “lying for 13 years.”
So, that’s basically just students and some professionals in the big cities, i.e. what are usually the most disaffected groups towards “sovereignist” regimes.
To slide in a Russia analogy, many of Russia’s state institutions, including those viewed as “propaganda bullhorns,” are staffed by crypto-liberals. (Liberals are more intelligent than “vatniks”, so any state needs them to staff its organs to some extent, so that they function at some level of competence). I can’t imagine it’s much different in Iran. There’d be differences, too. No risks to “defecting” for a Russian state journalist. While that Iranian anchorwoman might face consequences (though I don’t know Iran well enough to be sure). So it’s probably a more meaningful act.
And I’d guess velayat-e faqih is even less appealing to the high IQ than Putinism, which would make those protesting classes even angrier. (Actually, if I was Iranian, I’d guess I’d be against it, since the Islamosovok theocracy is actively hostile to Iranian nationalism as opposed to Putinism’s merely ambivalent relationship towards it).
Still, these are irrelevant details, in the big picture. The polls show that the Islamic Republic enjoys a groundswell of popular story, while the only major semi-independent force are the even more radical IRGC. You’re not going to get anything that’s to the liking of the neocon/regime change crowd out of that stew.