The one minute summary on Iran
This is it: one minute to the best info on Iran. This info alone will put you ahead of 99% of foreigners visiting Iran, garner the admiration of the locals who will instantly want to be your friends, and the envy of your fellow travelers. Read on. You’ll make friends faster that way, become a traveler instead of simply being a tourist, and also enjoy your travels a lot more.
Known as Persia until 1935, Iran became an Islamic republic in 1979 after the ruling monarchy was overthrown and Shah Mohammad Reza PAHLAVI was forced into exile. Conservative clerical forces led by Ayatollah Ruhollah KHOMEINI established a theocratic system of government with ultimate political authority vested in a learned religious scholar referred to commonly as the Supreme Leader who, according to the constitution, is accountable only to the Assembly of Experts – a popularly elected 86-member body of clerics. US-Iranian relations became strained when a group of Iranian students seized the US Embassy in Tehran in November 1979 and held embassy personnel hostages until mid-January 1981.
The US cut off diplomatic relations with Iran in April 1980. During the period 1980-88, Iran fought a bloody, indecisive war with Iraq that eventually expanded into the Persian Gulf and led to clashes between US Navy and Iranian military forces. Iran has been designated a state sponsor of terrorism for its activities in Lebanon and elsewhere in the world and remains subject to US, UN, and EU economic sanctions and export controls because of its continued involvement in terrorism and concerns over possible military dimensions of its nuclear program. Following the election of reformer Hojjat ol-Eslam Mohammad KHATAMI as president in 1997 and a reformist Majles (legislature) in 2000, a campaign to foster political reform in response to popular dissatisfaction was initiated.
The movement floundered as conservative politicians, supported by the Supreme Leader, unelected institutions of authority like the Council of Guardians, and the security services reversed and blocked reform measures while increasing security repression. Starting with nationwide municipal elections in 2003 and continuing through Majles elections in 2004, conservatives reestablished control over Iran’s elected government institutions, which culminated with the August 2005 inauguration of hardliner Mahmud AHMADI-NEJAD as president. His controversial reelection in June 2009 sparked nationwide protests over allegations of electoral fraud. These protests were quickly suppressed, and the political opposition that arouse as a consequence of AHMADI-NEJAD’s election was repressed.
Deteriorating economic conditions due primarily to government mismanagement and international sanctions prompted at least two major economically based protests in July and October 2012, but Iran’s internal security situation remained stable. President AHMADI-NEJAD’s independent streak angered regime establishment figures, including the Supreme Leader, leading to conservative opposition to his agenda for the last year of his presidency, and an alienation of his political supporters. In June 2013 Iranians elected a moderate conservative cleric, Dr. Hasan Fereidun RUHANI to the presidency.
He is a long-time senior member in the regime, but has made promises of reforming society and Iran’s foreign policy. The UN Security Council has passed a number of resolutions calling for Iran to suspend its uranium enrichment and reprocessing activities and comply with its IAEA obligations and responsibilities, but in November 2013 the five permanent members, plus Germany, (P5+1) signed a joint plan with Iran to provide the country with incremental relief from international pressure for positive steps toward transparency of their nuclear program.
That was it. I promised one minute.
For other condensed info check also my other posts on local culture (don’t make the mistakes I made), local food or local drinks. And when you call your friends to tell them you were by far the most knowledgeable at the party, do that with confidence that you’ll not get hit with a 6.99 per minute bill. You’ll also pick the local food from the tray, and order a local drink with confidence.
- Cultural Mistakes To Avoid in Iran
- Does my current phone work in Iran ? Tips to cell phone usage in Iran
- Local food you should try in Iran and No miss drinks in Iran
Now, cheers to the most Iran aware person at the cocktail party.
What are the key history moments for Iran?
Persia has always exerted a large cultural influence on its neighbors, especially Afghanistan and Central Asia. Persian influence can be seen in the art, architecture and languages of much of Central Asia. Throughout history, Persia has generally been an empire, one whose fortunes varied enormously. During the Achaemenid Empire, Persia controlled most of what we now call the Middle East, and after Cyrus the Great’s conquest of Ionia, Persia came close to conquering Greece in the Greco-Persian Wars of 499-449 BC. In 331 BC, Alexander conquered (among other things) the entire Persian Empire. Sassanid rule from 205 AD to 651 AD is considered to be the most influential period of ancient Iran.
In 651 AD, immediately after the death of Muhammad, the brutal conquest of Persia by the Arabs brought an end to the Sasanian Empire. Persian and other languages of the region are still written with the Arabic alphabet. In 1221 AD, Persia was overrun by the Genghis Khan and the Mongols. Marco Polo passed through in 1294 AD, learned Persian, and wrote extensively of the region. Tamerlane conquered Persia in 1383, and after a revolt in 1387, killed hundreds of thousands of people and built a tower with their skulls. The Safavid dynasty re-united Persia as an independent state in 1501, established Shi’a Islam as the official religion, and ushered in a golden age of Persian culture.
The dynasty was overthrown in 1736 by Nader Shah, the last great Asian conqueror, who expanded the Empire to again include Afghanistan and much of India. His short-lived dynasty and its successor, the Zand dynasty led by Karim Khan Zand, lasted until 1795. The defeat of Lotf Ali Khan by the Qajar armies, brought in a new dynasty, the Qajars, who ruled from 1795-1925. While many of the historic buildings in Iran are from this period, this era is considered to be one of decline for Iran, as the rulers were more interested in building their collections of art and jewels and succumbed to heavy pressure from foreign powers, notably Britain and Russia who jointly occupied Iran during World War I. In 1906, Qajar rule became a constitutional monarchy and the Majlis (Persian for parliament) was established.
The one minute summary for Iran geography
Best places to see in Iran
Ancient cities Hegmatane (or Ekbatana) – The capital of the ancient Meds. In modern-day Hamedan. Persepolise – Probably the most important historical site in Iran. The capital of the Achaemenid (Persian) Empire built by Darius. Near Shiraz. Pasargad (or Pasargadae) – The initial capital of the Persian Empire built by Cyrus the Great. Near Shiraz. Susa – Built by Elamites an then adopted by Achaemenid (Persian) and Sasanid empires, it has three layers of civilisation in it. Located in the modern-day town of Shush in the Khuzestan province. Chogha Zanbil- A ziggurat build by Elamites. Near Shush. Nain or Naeen or Naein is a small pre-Islamic in central Iran with over 2000 years of history. It’s a small pattern of an ancient desert town. the locals in Nain still speak in ancient Zoroastrian dialect. Sialk Mound (Tappeh Sialk) – More than 7,000 years old, this is world’s oldest ziggurat.
In suburbs of Kashan. Jiroft Tombs of some famous people Cyrus the Great in Pasargad near Shiraz. Avicenna in Hamedan. Khayyam in Neyshaboor (near Mashhad). Prophet Daniel in Susa (Shush). Mordechai and Esther in Hamedan. Saadi and Hafez famous Persian poets in Shiraz. Imam Reza an ornate shrine to the eighth of the Shiite imams (the only one buried in Iran) in Mashhad. Museums Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art. Housing an impressive collection worth $2.5 billion dollars, it is one of the most important art museums of Asia. The museum displays artwork by famous Western artists including Pablo Picasso, Wassily Kandinsky, Andy Warhol, Marcel Duchamp and Jackson Pollock. Palaces Sadabad. A palace complex where Mohammad-Reza Shah and his family used to live.
Some palaces converted to museums now. In Tehran. Shamsolemare Forty Pillar Palace (Chehel Sotoun) literally: Forty Columns) is a pavilion in the middle of a park at the far end of a long pool, in Isfahan, Iran, built by Shah Abbas II to be used for his entertainment and receptions. Chehel Sotoon Palace In this palace, Shah Abbas II and his successors would receive dignitaries and ambassadors, either on the terrace or in one of the stately reception halls. The name, meaning “Forty Columns” in Persian, was inspired by the twenty slender wooden columns supporting the entrance pavilion, which, when reflected in the waters of the fountain, are said to appear to be forty.
Palaces Ali Qapu Palace ?l? Q?p?(The Royal Palace) – Early 17th Century. It is forty-eight meters high and there are seven floors, each accessible by a difficult spiral staircase. In the sixth floor music room, deep circular niches are found in the walls, having not only aesthetic value, but also acoustic. It is rich in naturalistic wall paintings by Reza Abbassi, the court painter of Shah Abbas I, and his pupils. There are floral, animal, and bird motifs. Squares and Streets part of Naqshe jahan Square Naqsh-e Jahan Square also known as shah square or imam square-1602. With two mosques and the bazaar.It is an important historical site, and one of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites.The square is surrounded by buildings from the Safavid era. Armenian churches Vank Cathedral in Isfahan. Saint Thaddeus Monastery in West Azerbaijan Province.