Background: Known as Persia until 1935, Iran became an Islamic republic in 1979 after the ruling monarchy was overthrown and the shah was forced into exile. Conservative clerical forces established a theocratic system of government with ultimate political authority nominally vested in a learned religious scholar. Iranian-US relations have been strained since a group of Iranian students seized the US Embassy in Tehran on 4 November 1979 and held it until 20 January 1981. During 1980-88, Iran fought a bloody, indecisive war with Iraq that eventually expanded into the Persian Gulf and led to clashes between US Navy and Iranian military forces between 1987-1988. Iran has been designated a state sponsor of terrorism for its activities in Lebanon and elsewhere in the world and remains subject to US economic sanctions and export controls because of its continued involvement. Following the elections of a reformist president and Majlis in the late 1990s, attempts to foster political reform in response to popular dissatisfaction have floundered as conservative politicians have prevented reform measures from being enacted, increased repressive measures, and consolidated their control over the government.
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Blogs from Mashhad
Latest Blogs from Mashhad
- March 6th 2012 BOMB IRAN!... THE POWER OF MANTRAS
by Words: 1480 Photos: 5
- May 31st 2011 Mecca in Iran - Mashhad
by Words: 376 Photos: 5
- August 24th 2010 Mashhad pics
by Words: 2 Photos: 35
- May 5th 2010 Power to your elbow!
by Words: 1114 Photos: 0
- April 3rd 2009 My last days in Iran
by Words: 1018 Photos: 7
- October 2nd 2008 Imams, carpet salesmen, used car salesmen and the Supreme Leader
by Words: 1089 Photos: 0
- October 2nd 2007 Big hassle at Mashhad airport
by Words: 1319 Photos: 10
- September 30th 2007 From beautiful Esfahan to religious Mashhad
by Words: 1171 Photos: 21
- May 9th 2007 Iran for my Sexy Chador debut (XIII)
by Words: 1013 Photos: 7
- September 30th 2006 Badgir, badgir, badgir... Mushroom, mushroom...
by Words: 947 Photos: 0
- April 20th 2006 Turkmenistan or Bust!
by Words: 396 Photos: 0
- March 24th 1972 Overland 1972 - Day 42
by Words: 720 Photos: 0
- March 23rd 1972 Overland 1972 - Day 41
by Words: 705 Photos: 0