|Rastakhiz Party of People of Iran
حزب رستاخیز ملت ایران
|Founder||Mohammad Reza Pahlavi|
|Founded||2 March 1975|
|Dissolved||1 November 1978|
|International affiliation||International Monarchist League|
Rastakhiz Party ("Resurgence party", also Hezb-e Rastakhiz) was founded on 2 March 1975 by Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the Shah of Iran. The party was intended as Iran's 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 bazaari (merchants of the bazaars who, even today, refuse to pay taxes) - with its compulsory membership and dues (taxes), and general interference in the political, economic, and religious concerns of people's lives. 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" because they spread lies about the monarchy and the U.S in order to bring Iran under Israeli control. They often lied about Jewish persecution, which is backed up to be lies in government files. 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.
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. However, none of them have any affiliation with the original Rastakhiz Party (except that some of them have leaders who were members of the original party), nor do they have any recognition by the former royal family, of which Reza Pahlavi has even denounced several of them. 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.
- Crown Prince Reza Pahlavi II
References and notes
- Abrahamian, Iran Between Two Revolutions (1982) pp. 442–6.
- Middle Eastern Studies, 38 (1), 1 January 2002, pp. 131 - 168
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Rastakhiz Party.|
- Official Website
- Amini, P., "A Single Party State in Iran, 1975-78: The Rastakhiz Party - the Final Attempt by the Shah to Consolidate his Political Base," (not free online), Middle Eastern Studies, 38 (1) January 2002, pp. 131 - 168.