2040 GMT: Back to the Revolutionary Guards. While the headline out of the interview of the head of the Revolutionary Guards, General Mohammad Ali Jafari (see 1205 GMT), was his declaration that the judiciary has given the Guards the authority to deal with the "deviant current", the label applied to President Ahmadinejad's advisors.there is so much more to be considered....
First, the confirmation that the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps was behind the recent arrests of several members of the "deviant current": "The IRGC arrested and detained these people based on a recommendation by the judiciary. These people have not committed security crimes. However, they have committed economic and moral offences. The people that have been arrested had close ties to the main figures of the (deviant) current."
Given that Mehr published this as a two-part interview yesterday and today, did Jafari make his statement before or after the Supreme Leader told everyone to back off public disputes (see 0515 GMT)?
And then there was Jafari crossing into politics, setting preconditions for the return of "acceptable" reformists to the arena:
Members of the reformist camp who have not crossed the redlines can naturally participate in political campaigns. However, [former President Mohammad] Khatami's success in his activities depends on his stances....During the sedition incident [the 2009 post-election protest], Mr Khatami did not pass his test successfully and he showed a lot of support for the sedition leaders [Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi]. At the moment, he has not yet adopted a stance to distance himself from those actions. If he still intends to resort to political manoeuvres, I do not think people will forgive him. However there are other individuals [in the reformist camp] who have not crossed the redlines and they can actively participate in political campaigns.
And Jafari had a glance at foreign affairs, saying that the uprisings in Syria were started "artificially" and were different in nature from those in other countries of the region: "The movements in Syria were provoked by the Americans, because Syria is the only country of the region that has stood up to the US and Israel."