Debate Continues In Iran Over Implications Of US Elections
While nearly all Iranian media outlets are discussing the possible impact of the US election outcome on Iran, the Kayhan, a hardliner daily affiliated with Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei's office, on Sunday, November 1 criticized Iranian officials and media for tying the country's fate and its people's livelihood to US election results.
The Kayhan, particularly attacked the Rouhani administration-owned newspaper Iran, for a front-page report about the implications of a Biden or Trump victory for Iran's domestic and foreign policies as well as its economy.
The Kayhan, quoted a part of the article where it says, "Whatever the result of the November 3 election, it is going to start a new chapter in the struggle between Iran and America."
Also attacking Iranian reformist papers who have been covering the implications of the US election for the Islamic Republic during the past weeks, Kayhan wrote: "Those who ruined the people's livelihood in the past by tying it to the fate of the 2015 nuclear deal with the West, are trying to cause even more losses by paving the way for negotiations between Iran and the United States."
The administration owned daily, Iran, had said in its article on Saturday October 31, "Tensions between Iran and the United States have reached a point that it requires a new and different kind of decision making. Trump is an adventurist and if he wins the election, he might take even harder actions to make Iran accept a new round of negotiations."
The Kayhan also reminded that other Iranian reformist papers including Sharq had welcomed a report by the London-based magazine Economist that according to Kayhan clearly supported Biden's victory."
The hardline daily quoted Sharq as saying, "There is no guarantee that Biden's election would help us reach our ideals, but at least he has promised the restoration of democracy, representation, and a return to US values. "
Donya-e Eqtesad, an economic daily that supports Rouhani also wrote that "Biden's election will increase hope in an agreement with the United States, lifting of the sanctions, a drop in inflation rate and the return of stability to Iran's economy."
The economic daily had also opined that Biden's election will lead to an increase in Iran's oil exports while Trump's election would increase risks and adversely affect Iran's trade balance.
On Sunday, while hardliner IRGC-linked daily reported "barricading against the perils of democracy in the United States" and forecast disobedience and violence in America in case of a close result or a victory by Biden, reformist daily Sharq continued the debate about the implications of US election results for Iran's economy.
Sharq interviewed several economists and political analysts and opined that although there will be very little change in the United States' general policy toward Iran, yet each candidate's victory will make a difference for Tehran.
Economist Hamid Shahrestani told Sharq that the result of the US election will not dramatically affect the Iranian economy as problems In US-Iran relations have their roots in politics in Iran. Academic Mohammad Mehdi Behkish said: "We have been chanting slogans against the US for 40 years, and yet we are waiting for the result of the US election to determine the fate of our economy. Everybody is hoping for Biden's victory as they believe he has a softer policy vis-à-vis Iran." However, he noted that without foreign relations devoid of tensions Iran cannot have any hope in any improvement in the state of the economy.
Economist Kamal Tayebi said Iran should be prepared for the worst case scenario which is a victory by Trump. He added that in any case a possible return to lower inflation rates and lower prices will be a slow process if possible at all. Another economist, Mahmoud Jamsaz, however, opined that expecting renewed talks with America and Washington's return to the nuclear deal and lifting the sanctions and starting international trade is an illusion. The nuclear deal is no longer what it used to be, and there are a lot of other problems such as issues related to ballistic and cruise missiles, Iran's presence in regional countries and the transparency of its financial transactions that need to be tackled. Any talks with the United States will take a long time to happen, he said.
Acknowledging that the IRN-US problems are rooted in Iran, economist Hossein Haghgoo said Biden's election can affect the political line-up in Iran and empower moderate elements while Trump's victory will empower radical conservative and make economic reforms even more difficult. Yet, a solution for Iran's problems should be sought in Iran. “We are the solution,” Haghgoo said.