New role: the IRGC is more involved in the economy
The Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) has come a long way since it was formed in 1979 to protect the embryonic new government of Tehran from its opponents. After three decades as a primarily military organisation, the IRGC now has interests across Iran’s economic spectrum and its influence has extended into the country’s political sphere.
How unified the Revolutionary Guards are in their outlook for Iran is open to question. The group is far from monolithic, but under the presidency of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, they have seen their role in politics expand as much as in the economy. This summer, the IRGC picked sides in a conflict between Ahmadinejad and Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei.
-This article was published in MEED magazine in its Issue 38, (23-29) September, 2011