For Iranians in the Trump Era, Hope Is in Short Supply

For Iranians in the Trump Era, Hope Is in Short Supply
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani during a ceremony celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution, Tehran, Iran, Feb. 11, 2019 (AP photo by Vahid Salemi).

In promoting the 2015 nuclear deal, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, the government of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani promised it would yield impressive economic dividends for the general population. But those never materialized.

Instead, the economic situation has deteriorated considerably since U.S. President Donald Trump took office and embraced hard-line policies toward Iran. In January, Rouhani said the country was facing its worst economic crisis since the 1979 revolution.

In this week’s in-depth report for WPR, Jasmin Ramsey, the communications director of the Center for Human Rights in Iran, examines how Iranians are coping with their country’s declining fortunes. She writes that while the Iranian authorities have largely stifled dissent and made large-scale protests untenable, reform-minded activists are finding more subtle ways to advance their goals.

At the same time, these activists are resisting efforts by the Trump administration to co-opt their agenda. For the interview episode of the podcast, Ramsey talks with Robbie Corey-Boulet about why Iranians are insisting that change take place on their own terms.

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The Nuclear Deal Raised Iranians’ Hopes. Now They’re Focused on Survival

Trend Lines is produced and edited by Peter Dörrie, a freelance journalist and analyst focusing on security and resource politics in Africa. You can follow him on Twitter at @peterdoerrie.

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