In Iran, Pragmatic Camp Faces Down Ideological Camp

In a January 4, 2015 speech at an economic conference in Tehran, Iranian President Hassan Rohani, a leader of the country’s pragmatic camp, attacked the rival ideological camp, particularly the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), the country’s most powerful military and economic force. He presented a political, economic and cultural ideological line contradictory to that of the IRGC, and stressed that he aimed to direct the Iranian revolutionary regime in the moderate spirit of pragmatic camp leader and Expediency Council head Hashemi Rafsanjani, the fundamental tenets of which are “sustainable economic growth without political isolation”; an economic policy encouraging competition and foreign investments instead of the current IRGC economic monopoly; willingness to make certain concessions in the nuclear negotiations; and emphasis on the supremacy of the principle of the sovereignty of the people over decisions by Supreme Leader (Ali Khamenei).