One year on from Iran’s disputed election and in the wake of repeated protests by opposition forces in the country, the Guardian’s video documentary unit and the Bureau for Investigative Journalism interviewed former members of the elite Revolutionary Guard. Released on the web, this fifteen minute video documentary is just this summer’s latest salvo in the ongoing battle over how to relate to Iran. 1) See Guardianfilms and the Bureau of Investigative Journalism. www.guardian.co.uk/ world/2010/jun/11/iran-election-revolutionary-guard

What is the basis of political power in Iran? The answer used to be fairly straightforward: a conservative, religious elite backed by a praetorian military force of Revolutionary Guards and its auxiliary Basij militia. But since the June 2009 elections the fault-lines that previously described power in Iran have shifted.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PC3KEWKtJC4

The Guardian and the Bureau for Investigative Journalism have provided video testimony from recently defected Revolutionary Guard officers that throws some more light on this shift. The short video interviews three defectors, all now in exile, who left in the wake of the post-election government crackdown at the end of 2009, (the fourth person interviewed, a former Revolutionary Guard general, left Iran two years earlier). All three provide first-hand evidence that the regime was badly shaken by the protests which erupted after the elections and continued through 2009, culminating in December (on the feast of Ashura) with demonstrations and a brutal crackdown.

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1.  See Guardianfilms and the Bureau of Investigative Journalism. www.guardian.co.uk/ world/2010/jun/11/iran-election-revolutionary-guard