18 Pages

Haggay Ram

In his classic work The Anatomy of Revolution, Crane Brinton postulates that revolutions, 'as gospels, as forms of religion...are all universalist in aspiration'.1 This proposition certainly holds true in the case of the Iranian revolution. Exporting (sodur) the Islamic revolution is one of the chief pillars of Iran's revolutionary ideology - and to many of Ayatollah Khomeini's disciples, the principal goal of Iranian foreign policy. Indeed, Iran's leaders hold that their country has a special duty to propagate its message throughout the 'oppressed' Muslim world. In carrying out this responsibility, Iran pursues two objectives. First, it seeks to mobilize the revolutionary fervor of Muslims everywhere to overthrow their respective governments and establish Islamic republics similar to that of Iran. Second, Iran works to restore the unity of the Islamic community - the umma - so as to enable Islam to play its ordained role in history.