- " HH: ...What is the strength of the Iranian regime, Michael Rubin, in your estimate? Can it be toppled easily? Or is that a battle to the death if it’s joined? "
" MR: It can be toppled, not easily by any means. What’s the cement that holds it together? The Revolutionary Guard. We know from a variety of means, both on quantitative and qualitative, that the Iranian regime only has about only 20% of the Iranian population really support the idea of theocracy. That doesn’t mean that 80% of the others are revolutionaries by any means. Most of them are quite apathetic. However, the Revolutionary Guard, hand-appointed by the supreme leader, has the arms, and they’re willing to enforce the revolutionary precepts. What people often forget when they’re hoping for some muddle through reform, is that it doesn’t matter what 80% of the people think, because in Iran, sovereignty derives not from the people, but from Ayatollah Khamenei’s conception of God, and therefore, he doesn’t care what the people think, and he has the Revolutionary Guard in place to make sure that they don’t get out of line. "