Published: Tue, February 12, 2019
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

Timeline: Iran’s Islamic Revolution and the 40 years that followed

Timeline: Iran’s Islamic Revolution and the 40 years that followed

President Donald Trump slammed Iran's Islamic revolution as a complete failure for the country in tweets written in both English and Farsi Monday on the 40th anniversary of the Iranian Revolution.

Iranians celebrated the 1979 overthrow of Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, who was supported by the US, "waving Iranian flags, chanting "Death to America" and burning USA and Israeli flags", reported The Associated Press.

State TV showed crowds braving the snow, shouting "Death to Israel, Death to America", with some protesters burning American flags.

The hardliners, who believe in the strict implementation of laws from 40 years ago, continuously clash with the reformists, who are pushing for more economic transparency.

Soldiers, students, clerics and black-clad women holding small children thronged streets across Iran, many with portraits of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the Shi'ite cleric who toppled the Shah in an Islamic uprising that still haunts the West.

But despite the official festivities, today's Islamic republic faces acute economic challenges as it struggles with a mix of domestic hardships and USA sanctions.

Last year, Iran cracked down on protests over poor living standards in over 80 cities and towns that posed the most serious challenge to its clerical leadership since a 2009 revolt over disputed elections.

In January, Mr Rouhani said Iran was facing its worst economic crisis since the Shah was toppled. But he remained defiant as Iranians recalled the end of a monarch who catered to the rich and unleashed secret police on dissenters.

President Hassan Rouhani told a crowd in Tehran that Iran's enemies will not achieve what he called their evil goals.

"We will not let America become victorious..."

"Today we are the target of a psychological and economic war", he said, the news outlet reported.


Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has responded to the IRGC's harsh rhetoric about attacking Israel on Monday, saying that although he was "not ignoring the threat of the Iranian regime", he was also "unimpressed by them".

State television offered blanket coverage of the commemorations, showing marchers in cities ranging from Abadan in south-western Iran to Mashad in the northeast, all joined in fervent denunciations of both the US and Israel.

The problem, for Khamenei, is that there is a public record of such virulent, hateful chanting going as far back as the 1979 Islamic Revolution.

Today, Iran enjoys growing influence through proxies in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen, raising concerns in Sunni Saudi Arabia, which accuses its rival of trying to dominate the Middle East. Tehran denies that.

"The world saw when Iran chose to help people of Syria, Iraq, Lebanon, Palestine and Yemen, they achieved victory".

"The presence of people in this celebration means that plots by the enemies ... have been defused", Rouhani said.

Last year, Bolton told a meeting of Iranian exiles that "before 2019, we here. will celebrate in Iran".

Ballistic missile capabilities were on display during the main march, including the Qadr F, a ground-to-ground missile with a 1,950-km (1,220-mile) range, Tasnim news agency said.

In a speech at Tehran's Azadi square, President Hassan Rouhani dismissed USA efforts to isolate Iran, saying US sanctions could not break the Islamic Republic.

"The enemy can not ask us to leave the region".

This year's celebrations come amid heightened tensions with the United States, which last year withdrew from the 2015 nuclear agreement between Tehran and world powers and reimposed tough sanctions on the Iranian economy.

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