We’re a few days from the elections in Iran and there’s been a lot of news activity around it. However, if you’re an Iranian living abroad, the topic of the election might seem a little trickier.
A question posed to us by Nima Shirazi, the political analyst behind Wide Asleep in America, captures this exact catch-22.
Do you think that, beyond having the legal right, Iranians and Iranian citizens living outside Iran have the moral right to vote in Friday’s presidential election despite not living in Iran?
If it is the obligation of Iranians living in Iran, and them alone, to chose the government under which they will live, whether they seek to challenge and change the system or to reinforce it, what role do Iranians abroad – some of whom have vastly different political and religious beliefs than Iranians in Iran – have in the vote?
Can “ex-patriot” voting be seen as a kind of foreign intervention for regime change (or reform), albeit a peaceful kind, or – conversely – could the act of voting itself be seen as legitimating a political system one may disagree with?
Are the circumstances different for Iranian citizens who have never visited Iran, never lived in Iran or who, perhaps, don’t ever plan on going/returning?
Here is an excerpt from his article, featuring our answers, which you can check out here:
Iranians are not monolithic. Like any large community of human beings the world over, Iranians and Iranian citizens, living in Iran or abroad, have diverse opinions on everything from religion to politics to family to everything in between. Just like here in the United States, or any other country for that matter, there are those who support the government, and those who oppose it; those who thinking voting is important, those who consider it merely symbolic, and others who find it pointless, or worse. [Read more…]