Iranians disenchanted with their government feel “forgotten by the West”

By April 19, 2024

Iran (MNN) — Last weekend’s attack by Iran on Israeli soil may have some of the most significant political ramifications this year. As Israel seeks a Sunni-Israeli alliance against Iran and its Shia proxies, many are still asking questions.

Why did Iran directly attack Israel for the first time in its history? With support for Israel wavering from its allies, wouldn’t a direct attack from Iran re-bolster the world’s support for Israel? How was a direct attack in Iran’s best interest?

Escalating conflict abroad

Tehran, Iran (Photo courtesy of Khashayar Kouchpeydeh/Unsplash)

Lana Silk, CEO of Transform Iran, says, “Iran is in a difficult situation because, as you say, they can’t be seen to have ‘all bark and no bite.’ So they can’t just keep throwing all these threats out there and not following through.”

The lead-up to Iran’s attack has been a tit-for-tat process of escalation. Prior to October 7, Israel had a ceasefire with Hamas and was preparing to sign a peace deal with the Sunni government of Saudi Arabia. Then on October 7, Iran provided support for the terror attack by Hamas that killed over 1,200 Israelis and took around 240 hostage.

Iran has continued to add fuel to the fire of war in the Holy Land through its Shia proxies in Yemen and Lebanon. Israel sent a message to Iran by striking the Iranian consulate in Syria on April 1st, killing two Iranian generals and five officers.

Following the Iranian consulate strike, Tehran vowed to retaliate — which led to Iran sending hundreds of drones and missiles at Israel, most of which were shot down. Now, Israel says they cannot let a direct attack like this from Iran go unpunished.

Escalating conflict at home

Meanwhile, all is not well at home in Iran.

First, an ongoing power struggle between the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and the ayatollahs makes for uncomfortable bedmates when they have to turn and deal with wars abroad.

“That’s certainly what the atmosphere is in Iran today — that maybe there’s some infighting going on. And, of course, that has other implications,” Silk says.

(Photo courtesy of Transform Iran)

Then there’s the Iranian people, the majority of whom feel disenfranchised by their own government and are struggling to make ends meet.

Tehran received significant criticism for entering 2024 without an official budget or fiscal plan. This year also marks the end of Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi’s first term in office.

“Economically, it’s a very difficult climate. There’s already been a lot of uncertainty now with this ‘budget, no budget’ question. I mean, they’re having to throw something together. They’re not committing the right money to the right places. They’re spending money in war.

“So the people of Iran continue to pay. They’re struggling for jobs. They’re struggling for affordable housing and food. Poverty is high. The people are not being looked after and they’re stuck.

“They feel completely trapped in the world that they live in right now. As far as they’re concerned, they are forgotten by the West because all the West sees is their regime with all the negative things at play that the regime is involved in. So then the West must hate us.”

Silk says there are many in Iran who are not pleased with their government’s actions on the global stage. Many are even questioning the validity of Islam itself, although it is incredibly dangerous to do so in Iran where Islam is the state religion.

Seeking Truth

These silent doubters are seeking spiritual truth. This is where Transform Iran’s ministry steps in with the transcending hope and truth of the Gospel.

Transform Iran is passionate about leadership development. The Church in Iran is growing fast.
(Photo, caption courtesy of Transform Iran)

Transform Iran uses television, radio, and social media to reach Iranians with the Good News about Jesus. No matter the circumstances, Christ offers comfort and hope. The people of Iran need to know.

“The best thing that we can do for the people of Iran today is to let them know that we see them, and we care!” says Silk.

“It would be so helpful for us all to be using the power of social media to be talking about the people of Iran, sharing posts that highlight the needs of the people of Iran, let them know that they are seen, that we love them, we care for them.

“Let’s be praying. Let’s be fueling what God is doing. Let’s be inviting the Holy Spirit to be visiting people in their dreams, in their doorways, in visions…. That is a powerful thing that we can be doing. If we do that, then we will have helped the people of Iran.”

Learn more about Transform Iran’s ministry here.



Header photo courtesy of Steven Su/Unsplash.

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