The new crown epidemic has swept the world, and Iran is one of the worst-hit countries. In the middle of the outbreak in China, Iran also began a large-scale outbreak. The ruthless virus even took away many important figures and celebrities of Iranian political, religious and military personnel. Today, when the epidemic in China is gradually controlled and the epicenter of the epidemic has shifted to Europe and America, Iran still exists today. The 30,000 confirmed cases are still not optimistic.
But Iran's already weak economy can no longer stand it. On April 4, the number of new confirmed cases in Iran in a single day showed a continuous decline for 6 days, and the government anxiously announced at the "Anti-epidemic Conference" held on the 5th-"low-risk business and economic activities in other provinces except the capital" Activities" will resume work on April 11.
And this decision immediately caused great concern among the country’s health departments and local officials. Faced with the still huge number of confirmed cases, where is the confidence of the Rouhani government in resuming work?
From March 30 to April 7, the number of new cases in a single day in Iran decreased from 3,186 to 2,089, indicating that the anti-epidemic work led by the Rouhani government has indeed made some progress. However, the Iranian epidemic situation is still very severe, and theoretically, it has not reached the conditions for resuming work and production.
It seems to have survived the peak of new diagnoses, but economically Iran may have reached its limit ▼
Iran’s population is unevenly distributed, dense in the northwest and sparsely in the southeast, with the densest population near the capital Tehran. Since March 11, there have been more than 1,000 new cases nationwide every day, and Tehran accounts for a large proportion of them. In such a severe situation, 63% of Tehran citizens still do not have enough protective equipment such as masks and disinfectants. The people in the capital still have no protection against the virus. It is conceivable that there is a shortage of medical supplies in other parts of the country.
In early March, the epidemic situation in Iran has shown an outbreak, especially in the capital Tehran and surrounding large cities (diagnosed in various parts of Iran, general situation on March 10) (reference: wikipedia-2020 coronavirus pandemic in Iran)▼
In fact, the local people did not strictly abide by the personal protection requirements set by the government, and even more than 30% of the people did not approve of quarantine measures.
Most people underestimated the seriousness of the matter (3/10 picture from Mohammad Ahangar / Wikipedia)▼
大多数人低估了事件的严重性（来自Mohammad Ahangar /维基百科的3/10图片）▼
This is closely related to the government's wrong positioning and propaganda of the virus at the beginning of the outbreak in Iran. The Shiite Ulima (religious scholar), who has a lofty right to speak in Iranian society, relies on religious networks to indoctrinate followers with the idea that “the virus is not terrible”. Supreme Leader Khamenei also vigorously declared that “the virus is a terrorist confrontation by the United States. Part of it is to divert public panic and serve the strategic demands of confronting the United States.
The situation of the old opponent is not much better (Washington, DC/USA-3/17) (picture from Nicole Glass Photography / Shutterstock.com)▼
It is conceivable that in the absence of early publicity, the current reduction in new cases is mainly the result of the government's administrative measures (including the use of military power), rather than the result of the people's voluntary participation in protection. Under the conditions of strong control, there are still new cases. Once the control is released and the free movement of people is allowed, it is self-evident.
The military force can only strengthen the temporary epidemic prevention and control, but it mainly depends on the public's awareness of epidemic prevention (picture from Behnam Tofighi / Wikipedia)▼
军队只能加强临时的防疫工作，但主要取决于公众的防疫意识（图片来自Behnam Tofighi / Wikipedia）▼
Externally, the continuous increase of US sanctions has also increased the difficulty of Iran's epidemic prevention work. For a long time, the United States has imposed extensive restrictions on Iran’s banking system and imposed a strict embargo on its oil exports, which in itself severely hit Iran’s economy. Under the epidemic, these sanctions have greatly restricted Iran’s ability to raise funds and purchase basic medical supplies from abroad.
Fortunately, Mahan Airlines has not stopped to receive foreign aid materials (picture from Mohammad Mehdi Dorani / wikipedia)▼
幸运的是，马汉航空并未停止接收外国援助材料（图片来自Mohammad Mehdi Dorani /维基百科）▼
In the past two months, the Trump administration has also reduced the number of licenses for certain agencies to export medical products to Iran. And just recently, the Rouhani government urgently applied for a US$5 billion anti-epidemic loan from the International Monetary Fund, which was also made difficult by the United States. At the same time, the United States made a statement that it wanted to blackmail Iran on the condition of helping Iran fight the epidemic to force it to yield, and the Iranian government stated that it "will never bow its head."
Actively learn effective anti-epidemic experience (picture from: Wikipedia)▼
Iran’s economy is based on crude oil and is strongly dependent on resources. Its industrial strength is quite average, and its level of refining is not high among the oil countries in the Middle East, not to mention everything from light industry such as sewing masks to precision manufacturing such as ventilators. industry. And because its medical equipment is heavily dependent on imports, the medical system is easily penetrated when faced with a large-capacity impact, and the epidemic will be even more out of control by then.
Tehran's ICU is still hard to find (picture from Amir Mardani / Shutterstock.com)▼
德黑兰的ICU仍然很难找到（图片来自Amir Mardani / Shutterstock.com）▼
Knowing these practical difficulties, why did the Rouhani government resolutely order the resumption of work and production?
Many people believe that the Iranian government decided to resume work and production because of the intuitive decrease in new cases. But more substantively, Iran was forced to carry out economic recovery due to internal and external pressure.
Compared to most countries with severe epidemics in the world, Iran and its ruling government are facing much greater economic pressure. Iran has been subject to the US economic blockade for a long time. Before the outbreak, the currency rial had plummeted. Since the outbreak, Iranian prices have continued to rise, and the unemployment rate has also continued to increase. In addition to the recent collapse in international oil prices due to the entanglement between OPEC and Russia, Iran, as an oil producer, also suffered heavy losses.
In the days when it was impossible to drive out, oil prices fell (Las Vegas, 4/1) (picture from chara_stagram / Shutterstock.com)▼
在无法开车的日子里，油价下跌（拉斯维加斯，4/1）（图片来自chara_stagram / Shutterstock.com）▼
In this context, the United States, Saudi Arabia and other old opponents have stepped up their efforts to incite dissatisfaction among the people in Iran, trying to weaken the legitimacy of the Iranian government from the people's livelihood. From this point of view, more than 50 Iranian economists sent a letter to Rouhani expressing that “probably riots in low-income areas” are very predictable. Therefore, no matter how well the epidemic is controlled, Iran needs economic income to achieve regime stability.
The closure of commercial establishments has caused many people to lose their income (picture from MojNews / Wikipedia)▼
商业机构的关闭导致许多人失去收入（图片来自MojNews / Wikipedia）▼
In addition to consolidating the legitimacy of the government of the Islamic Republic in power, Iran also has its own huge network of overseas interests that needs to be maintained through domestic economic recovery.
For a long time, Iran has established a Middle East Shiite interest network including Hezbollah in Lebanon and the Bashar regime in Syria. This has become an important support for it to show its regional influence, interfere in regional hotspot issues, and counter the anti-Iran camp. The resources needed to maintain this network are also enormous: It is reported that Iran provides Hezbollah with up to 900 million US dollars in financial aid each year, and the entire region invests even more.
On the one hand, Iran has to provide a large amount of aid to its allies, and on the other hand, it has long suffered economic sanctions from the United States and the recent plunge in oil prices has undoubtedly made Iran worse ▼
If the country cannot resume work and increase income as soon as possible, Iran can only be forced to adopt a policy of regional contraction, and its influence in the region will naturally be greatly affected, destroying the achievements of military diplomacy since the political revolution in the 1970s. This is also a burden that the current Rouhani government cannot afford.
The huge internal and external pressure has made the Iranian government seriously consider the possibility of forced resumption of work. The social structure and cultural outlook of Iran actually support a certain degree of resumption of work.
With the increase in detection capacity and treatment experience, Iran’s anti-epidemic work is gradually effective (picture from Mohammad Mohsenifar / Wikipedia)▼
随着侦查能力和治疗经验的增加，伊朗的抗流行病工作逐渐有效（图片来自Mohammad Mohsenifar / Wikipedia）▼
From the perspective of the social demographic age structure, young people under the age of 30 account for 55% of the total population of Iran, and the deaths of the new coronavirus are mainly the elderly and people with underlying diseases. This is also the case in Iran, although the prevalence rate is high. The main reason for the fatality rate is not as high as imagined. Many young people have mild symptoms even if they are sick, and they will not have much adverse impact on the resumption of work and production. They may even develop immunity to the virus after they are cured (provided that the virus is not significantly mutated). Even if problems occur in the resumption of work, it is controllable. of.
But the loss is also huge. The cemetery area in Iran has been expanded again and again (picture from Behzad Alipour/ Wikipedia)▼
但是损失也很大。伊朗的公墓地区一次又一次地扩大（图片来自Behzad Alipour / Wikipedia）▼
Judging from the social atmosphere in Iran, most people are optimistic about virus prevention and control. For decades, the Iranian people have long been accustomed to the shortage of medical supplies, the strengthening of US sanctions, and the continuous economic decline, and they have their own philosophy of life in the cruel social reality.
The village is still a village (Tehran, April 2) (picture from Mohammad Mohsenifar / Wikipedia)▼
该村庄仍然是一个村庄（4月2日，德黑兰）（图片来自Mohammad Mohsenifar / Wikipedia）▼
Religious beliefs played an obvious placebo effect at this time. Even if many Iranian Muslims unfortunately became COVID-19 patients, they thought it was "Allah's arrangement", and there is not much to complain about.
The quarantine personnel check the body temperature at the junction of Tehran and Qom (picture from: http://fna.ir/dfiset)▼
Considering various factors, although resuming work is a risky move, Iran does not have much room for choice and waiting, and it is also prepared for adverse consequences. It is worth a try.
It is worth noting that although Iran initiated the resumption of work when the epidemic is still serious, this resumption of work is not a full-scale liberalization of recklessness, but rather reserved adjustment space and optimized design.
The regulations on the resumption of low-risk activities outside Tehran on the 11th mean that as long as industries that do not engage in collective activities can be restored, such as clothing, catering, transportation, etc., the restoration of these industries can guarantee the basic lives of the people. The continued closure of schools, gyms, swimming pools, religious sites, etc., does not actually have much impact on basic production and life.
The park still has to be sealed (picture from Mohammad Hossein Velayati / Wikipedia)▼
公园仍然必须封闭（图片来自Mohammad Hossein Velayati / Wikipedia）▼
By the 18th, if there are no problems with the resumption of work in other areas, Tehran's "low-risk activities" will gradually begin. The Rouhani government will also continue to coordinate the military, health, social management and other agencies to jointly participate in prevention and control, and stipulate that the Baschi militias under the Islamic Revolutionary Guards monitor the implementation of specific measures.
In fact, as early as the beginning of March, the government had planned measures to resume work. Iran’s strategy is to carry out strict prevention and control for one month from March to contain the development of the epidemic. Regardless of the effect, it will resume economic development. Because the country cannot withstand the economic regression, and one month of strict prevention and control has played a role in enhancing the self-protection awareness of the people, which is good for maintaining a certain level of health vigilance after resuming work.
We can’t purify ourselves in places of faith. Humans should disinfect them obediently (picture from Mehdi Bakhshi / Wikipedia)▼
我们无法在信仰的地方净化自己。人类应该听从消毒（从Mehdi Bakhshi / Wikipedia拍摄）▼
In terms of diplomacy, since the reality of increased US sanctions cannot be changed, the Iranian government has strengthened economic cooperation and mutual medical assistance with China, Russia and other countries.
As early as February 29, members of the Chinese Red Cross volunteer expert team went to Tehran for medical assistance. The Iranian government is also very willing to learn from China's experience in epidemic prevention for propaganda, testing, isolation and treatment.
These measures have even played a role in enhancing China's soft power influence in Iraq. For example, when the new crown epidemic broke out in China, some people in Iran were convinced that "the new crown was caused by the Chinese people eating bats", and they felt disgusted with the Chinese people for not paying attention to hygiene. Since the Chinese medical aid team arrived in Iran, the relatively developed health technology brought there quickly changed this impression.
After the outbreak of the Iranian epidemic, the Chinese government, local enterprises and spontaneous individuals provided material assistance and donations to Iran (picture from Mohammad Hossein Velayati /Wikipedia)▼
In fact, the dual pressure of the epidemic and sanctions is not all negative to the Iranian government.
Due to the double pressure, many foreign capitals in Iran have withdrawn and imports have dropped significantly, but it is a spontaneous wave of import substitution for domestic companies. The Iranian business community, which is inherently not highly extroverted, now has unprecedented support for the Rouhani government.
And the government's strengthening of social control and active prevention and control of the epidemic have indeed acted, causing many people who are very dissatisfied with the current regime to change their attitudes, and the country's internal unity has been improved. This is not necessarily good for Iran’s integration into the world order, but it is good for temporarily maintaining regime stability.
This runs counter to the demands of the United States and Saudi Arabia to subvert the current Iranian government.
In fact, since the overthrow of the Pahlavi dynasty, the Persians have seen enough of the world. The turmoil caused by the new crown virus may be just one of them is not special.
1. Jing An: "Can't fight it anymore, the countries with the worst epidemic in the Middle East will resume work", Jiemian News, April 6, 2020.
3. HTTPS://middle east affairs.net/2020/04/06/Iran-will-never-ask-U-是-佛如-corona virus-help-official/
4. HTTPS://呜呜呜.rail freight.com/belt and road/2020/04/06/啊-new-China-connection-佛如-Austria-is-now-on-ITS-蛙泳/