U.S. democracy promotion in Iran will backfire
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Aggressive democracy promotion is a strategy that is likely to backfire in another way. There is little doubt that a growing number of Iranians (especially young Iranians) are fed up with the repressive rule of the mullahs and want a more open society. But outspoken U.S. endorsements of their resistance campaign could be the kiss of death. U.S. support gives the religious hierarchy the perfect pretext to portray even cautious advocates of political reform as traitors and American stooges.