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Rastakhiz (Resurrection) party (also Hizb-i Rastakhiz) was founded on March 2, 1975 by Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the Shah of Iran, as a new single party holding a monopoly on political activity in Iran, and to which all Iranians were required to belong. It survives today in exile as an Iranian monarchist party opposing the Islamic Republic created when the Pahlavi dynasty was overthrown.

Founded under the government of Prime Minister Amir Abbas Hoveyda, the party has been blamed by some with contributing to the overthrow of the Pahlavi monarchy by antagonizing formerly apolitical Iranians - especially merchants of the bazaars - with its compulsory membership and dues and general aggressive interference in the political, economic, and religious concerns of people's lives.[1] The few political parties that were able to continue functioning during this era were forced to become part of Rastakhiz.

Established along with the party was a youth wing - Rastakhiz Youth - which Hoveyda referred to as "the instrument of Iran's development." Through this youth wing and a special task force of the party, Rastakhiz embarked upon a large-scale anti-profiteering campaign directed against the bazaari merchants, who were soon identified as "enemies of the state." In October 1975, the Shah, referring to this campaign as a "cultural movement," decreed that anti-profiteerism be made the fourteenth principle of the White Revolution.[2]

The single party system ended in late 1978 as the Iranian Revolution gained ground.[3] The party was totally removed in early 1979 when the monarchy fell.[4]

Since the revolution the party and other monarchist groups have been active in exile calling for the reestablishment of the constitutional monarchy of 1906 in Iran. Monarchist groups are strictly banned under the government of the Islamic Republic and supporters are typically subject to imprisonment should their affiliation be made public.

Rastakhiz party is member of the International Monarchist Conference.

See also

References & notes

  1. ^ Abrahamian, Iran Between Two Revolutions (1982) pp. 442–6.
  2. ^ [1] dead link
  3. ^ Middle Eastern Studies, Volume 38, Number 1 / January 1, 2002, Pages: 131 - 168
  4. ^ Political Parties: A Cross-National Survey

External links



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