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The Long Game for Iranian Democracy

After forty years of draconian religious rule, meaningful change may be possible in Iran.

In early September, a twenty-nine-year-old Iranian soccer fan named Sahar Khodayari set herself on fire in front of a courthouse in Tehran in a dramatic display of defiance against regime authorities.

  • Ilan Berman
  • The National Interest

Khodayari had been arrested this spring for defying an official ban on female attendance at public sporting events—a violation that left her facing six months behind bars.

Khodayari subsequently succumbed to her injuries, but her public act of protest succeeded in breathing new life into the political ferment that has buffeted Iran for the…

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