Dictatorship of patriarchy | Opinion

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Everything has gotten worse for Iranians since the murder a year ago in a police station of Masha Amini, the young woman detained because part of her hair was showing under her Islamic veil. Half a thousand young people have died in the repression of the demonstrations, tens of thousands have been detained and tortured, and seven have been sentenced to death and immediately executed. No official investigation has led to police actions, encouraged by the regime's media. Families and lawyers of the victims, on the other hand, are threatened and intimidated by the Government.

The regime has not given in to the protests, but neither has the opposite happened, as Ángeles Espinosa has recounted in these same pages. (The Iranian regime, incapable of building bridges16 of September). Unable to stop the challenge of many women to the mandatory veil, it now legislates to severely punish with fines and even deprivation of basic rights violations of Islamic morality, which naturally includes the display of a bare head.

The ayatollahs have lost any semblance of legitimacy, but the population has lost fear. Amini is already the universal symbol of the fight against the dictatorship of patriarchy that has its harshest and most intransigent regimes in Iran and neighboring Afghanistan. It's about a apartheid gender, according to a concept advanced by the United Nations for both countries, which keeps half of the population subjected and discriminated against, in the Afghan case to the point of exclusion from education and work.

Such an authoritarian drift could not lack the solidarity of the authoritarian superpowers. Tehran supplies drones to Russia in its war against Ukraine, a role that only another pariah regime like North Korea dares to play openly. Beijing has sponsored the opening towards Saudi Arabia, the ideological rival, religious competitor and strategic enemy with which Iran has reestablished diplomatic relations. It has also opened the doors of the BRICS group to both at the same time, in a move to weaken and replace the United States in the Middle East.

The response from Washington, interested in Iran's nuclear disarmament, is shamelessly pragmatic. Joe Biden has unlocked $6 billion from Iranian accounts in exchange for the freedom of five American prisoners, in an exchange like those made with spies in the Cold War. For the White House it is a first step to obtain Iran's renunciation of its dangerous nuclear program. Those who have no more urgency than to overthrow the dictatorship do not see it with the same eyes, especially those women who fight to live free and without the veil. As if history were repeating itself, the dictatorship of the Iranian patriarchate toughens repression at home in times of external détente, following the example of the defunct Soviet Union, that dictatorship of the proletariat that preceded the current dictatorship of the KGB.

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