The Iranian Revolution
By Aqeel Khanani
The nonviolent movement led primarily by Ayatollah Khomeini was built upon the two movements preceding it. The first was a nonviolent movement made up primarily of nonviolent liberal intellectuals. However, they failed because they were unable to gain the support of large sects of the population. The second movement was the leftist guerilla movement of the late 1960s and early 1970s. This was made up of a group of individuals who believed violence to be the only way to overthrow the oppressive regime. Nevertheless, they, too, failed. This movement was also unable to gain support from the majority of the population. People were either too hesitant to take up arms, or simply not fit to do so. The regime was also able to brutally suppress this movement, while justifying its violent response.
Ayatollah Khomeini’s nonviolent movement took place in the late 1970s, but it was an ideological movement years in the making. Khomeini spent years appealing to the majority of the Iranian population. In 1963, Khomeini emerged as the leading critic of the Shah’s White Revolution.
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