Iranian president’s death carries dire scenario: ‘possible nuclear war’

The death of the president does not necessarily create a power vacuum because supreme power in Iran is exercised not by the president but by the country’s spiritual leader.

The death of Iranian President Ibrahim Raisi, who died in a helicopter crash on Sunday, may or may not have major consequences, the director of the Finnish Middle East Institute estimates. Susanne Dahlgren.

Raisin has long been expected to succeed Ali Khamenei as Iran’s next spiritual leader. The spiritual leader serves as Iran’s head of state and is the country’s highest political and religious leader.

Ibrahim Raizia (right) is sworn in as Iran’s supreme leader after the death of 85-year-old Ali Khamenei (left). ZumaWire / MVPHOTOS

– Khamenei is 85 years old and has cancer. It was long expected that he might die suddenly, Dahlgren says.

According to Iran’s constitution, Raisi will be temporarily replaced by the country’s vice president. A new presidential election is not held in the country more than 50 days after the death.

According to Dahlgren, the Iranian people are strongly divided into supporters and opponents of Rice. In the country, the clerics who came to power in support of Raisi have a tight grip on the people.

Whether this situation will lead to an internal crisis in the country is currently open to speculation.

– Of course, the clergy try to keep power firmly in their hands, Dahlgren says.

Iran last saw unrest in 2022, then 22 years old Mahza Amini Kapu of the country died in the hands of the police. At the time, the country was rocked by protests for several weeks.

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How about the “axis of evil”?

In a 2002 speech, former US President George W. Bush defined Iran, North Korea, and Iraq as the so-called “axis of evil.”

Later, due to Russia’s war of aggression in Ukraine, China and Russia were included in the same definition.

After the start of the war in Ukraine, Russia and Iran have intensified their cooperation. Photo shows Ibrahim Raisi as a guest of Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow. AOP

Iran is a key ally of Russia. Russia has effectively used Iranian-made Shahid drones in Ukraine.

Iran initially denied allegations that it had sold drones to Russia, but later admitted to an arms trade with a country waging a war of aggression.

Dahlgren does not believe Raisi’s death has any significance for relations between Iran and Russia.

– I think death has no effect. Raisi was not a key figure in this type of collaboration. The (Iranian) foreign minister also died in the crash, but he would only be replaced by a similarly conservative.

Ali Khamenei is the spiritual leader of Iran. EPA/AOP

No need to wait for changes

Dahlgren sees that Raisi’s death does not really have an impact on the Middle East or Iran’s internal situation.

Vice President of the country Muhammad Mukhbar Plans have been in place for a long time, and when Khamenei is alive, there will be no power vacuum in the country or nearby areas.

– Power (in Iran) rests in the hands of the country’s supreme leader, and the tightly knit Revolutionary Guard is the country’s central security political body. In addition to internal security, it takes care of many other things, Dahlgren says.

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– There was no power vacuum in the country even when America killed the leader of the revolutionary army.

Nor is there any need to wait for a new, reform-minded leader who leans toward the West after Rice.

– These are big problems for Iran in terms of national security and stability. You can’t expect a new person to come in and start drawing something completely new. It doesn’t happen there, Dahlgren says.

The Revolutionary Army of Iran is a military organization that takes care of many things other than Iran’s internal security. EPA/AOP

“Horror Scene”

Enemies situated in the nearest part of the country are unlikely to seek to take advantage of the situation. For decades, Iran has supported armed groups and militias in Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Yemen and the Palestinian territories.

news agency Reuters On Monday, Hamas, which is fighting Israel in Gaza, released a statement on Rice’s death. It expressed the organization’s “deepest condolences and solidarity” with Khamenei, the Iranian government and the people of Iran “for this great loss”.

If the cause of Rice’s fatal accident is linked to one of Iran’s adversaries, the situation in the Middle East could worsen.

Iran expert Alan Salezadeh Said before MTV: N In an interview, the crash site was located near an Israeli base.

– Salezadeh told MTV that it was very possible that there was GPS interference, but it was unlikely that the authorities would admit to such a thing.

Reuters news agency reported on Monday, citing an official Israeli source, that the country had nothing to do with the crash.

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– It’s not us, the official, insisting on anonymity, told Reuters.

According to Dahlgren, Israel’s involvement in the accident would be much worse. According to him, GPS interference continues to occur in the area, but the matter is yet to be investigated.

– The worst case scenario would be a war between Iran and Israel. This is what all forces have been trying to prevent for years. That would be two states prone to nuclear war.

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