Raisi is distinguished by the fact he has spent his entire life in the Iranian judiciary. The judiciary had to be built up from scratch in the 1980s and it established itself by running societal terror. You could go to jail for the most basic things, like owning a VCR or wearing a t-shirt. Raisi has spent his entire life in that system.
Arash Azizi is the author of “Shadow Commander: Soleimani, US & Iran’s Global Ambitions” and the author of an essay for New Lines Magazine on Iran’s new president.
In this podcast he joins New Lines’ Rasha Elass and Cameron Khansarinia, policy director at the National Union for Democracy in Iran, based in Washington DC, to explore the new president’s background, whether Iran is going through a domestic crisis, and what the future of American-Iranian relations will look like.