The Election of the New President in Iran Does Not Reduce the Iranian Threat to Israel

Iran has elected a new president who is expected to focus primarily on improving the country’s difficult economic situation. The new president, Masoud Pezeshekian, is anticipated to be another puppet of Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and the Revolutionary Guards. His election will not mitigate the Iranian threat to Israel or its efforts to obtain nuclear weapons.

Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei achieved his goal by holding the presidential elections exactly according to the constitution following the death of President Ebrahim Raisi in a helicopter accident.

This move has restored stability to the streets of cities in the Islamic Republic.

Senior intelligence sources in Israel suggest that Khamenei acted wisely.

Had he not been interested in the election of reformist candidate Masoud Pezeshekian, the Council for the Preservation of the Constitution, which approves candidates, would have disqualified him, as it did in the 2021 presidential elections.

Regarding the election results, Khamenei stated, “The Iranian people succeeded in electing a president with a majority of votes through free and transparent elections within a short legal period.

This is a significant move in countering the artificial noise to boycott the elections that the enemy raised to sow despair among the people.”

Masoud Pezeshekian, a 69-year-old heart surgeon, won the election over conservative candidate Saeed Jalili, garnering more than 16 million votes compared to Jalili’s 13.5 million votes.

Pezeshekian, a former parliament member who criticized the regime’s violent suppression of street protests in 2008, served as a doctor on the front lines during the Iran-Iraq War and was the Minister of Health under reformist President Khatami.

In Iran, it is said that the election results reflect the desire of the young generation and the urban middle class to see change.

While a reformist president improves the Iranian regime’s image internationally, the 85-year-old Khamenei still controls all important matters, including security, foreign affairs, and the nuclear project.

Khamenei is likely to give Pezeshekian wide latitude to address the severe economic crisis plaguing Iran.

Pezeshekian has pledged to tackle the failing economy, which suffers from poor management, corruption, and American sanctions.

Pezeshekian might assist Khamenei in a possible breakthrough in relations with the West and help negotiate a new nuclear agreement, potentially unfreezing substantial Iranian funds held in Western banks due to sanctions.

Despite the limitations on his powers, Pezeshekian is expected to play a key role in selecting Khamenei’s successor, influencing Iran’s future direction.

Regarding Iran’s policy toward Israel and its goal of Israel’s destruction,

Pezeshekian’s election changes nothing.

The Supreme Leader and the Revolutionary Guards spearhead this policy and the effort to produce nuclear weapons, aiming to become a nuclear regional power in the Middle East.

Khamenei will not allow Pezeshekian to pursue rapprochement with the West, and Iran’s international isolation is expected to continue.

Pezeshekian will soon realize the vast difference between his campaign promises and his ability to fulfill them.

The new president is expected to strengthen ties with Russia and China to counter US global hegemony.

In conclusion, Israel’s security establishment assesses that Pezeshekian is likely a “puppet president” who will unhesitatingly follow Khamenei’s directives and the Revolutionary Guards’ expansionist policies.

Even previous reformist presidents, such as Rouhani and Khatami, did not halt Iran’s pursuit of nuclear weapons.

Thus, the threat to Israel remains unchanged despite the election of a new president in Iran.

Yoni Ben Menachem Senior Middle East Analyst

About Yoni Ben Menachem

Yoni Ben Menachem is a Middle East senior analyst ,a journalist and
the former CEO of the Israel Broadcasting Authority(IBA). He has
decades of experience in written and video journalism. Ben
Menachem’s path in the media world began as a producer for
Japanese television in the Middle East. After that, he held many key
positions in the media The Israeli: CEO of the Israel Broadcasting
Authority, director of “Kol Israel” Radio, reporter on West Bank and
Gaza Strip affairs, political reporter and commentator, commentator
on Middle East affairs and editor-in-chief and presenter of the
program “Middle East Magazine”. 

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