chapter  8
The struggle over the reconstruction of Iran after Khomeini
President Hashemi Rafsanjani, 1989–1997
Pages 34

The reconstruction of the country after Khomeini's death and an eight-year war created underlying tensions among Iran's leaders and in Iran's relations with the United States. The outcome determined the course Khamenei took for the next twenty-five years as the Supreme Leader of Iran. As a pragmatic conservative presidential candidate, Rafsanjani received nearly 95 percent of the vote during the July 28, 1989, presidential election and his primary goal is to reconstruct Iran internally and improve its foreign relations. Khamenei viewed Rafsanjani's pragmatic and ambitious foreign policy objectives as a potential threat to Iran's national security. His chief domestic policy is to increase Iran's power through economic reconstruction, including its military power, national security, and counter-intelligence efforts. Khomeini renamed the Gulf War the 'Oil War', and he condemned America and its allies for attacking Iraq and killing innocent people. He also emphasized creating prosperity and undertaking the reconstruction of the country after the destruction left by the Iran-Iraq War.