Karim Sadjadpour is a senior fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, where he focuses on Iran and U.S. foreign policy toward the Middle East. He is a contributing writer at The Atlantic, has published recent essays in Foreign Affairs, the New York Times, and Washington Post, and has authored two front cover stories for Time Magazine (International).
He regularly advises senior U.S., European, and Asian officials, has testified numerous times before the U.S. Congress, and is an advisor to the Aspen Institute's Congressional Program on the Middle East. He has lectured at Harvard, Princeton, and Stanford universities, and has been the recipient of numerous academic awards, including a Fulbright scholarship. He is currently writing a book on radicalism scheduled to be published by Random House/Knopf.
Karim has degrees from the University of Michigan and the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). He was previously an analyst with the International Crisis Group, based in Tehran and Washington. He has lived in both Iran and the Arab world and speaks Persian, Italian, Spanish, and proficient Arabic. He is an adjunct professor at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service, teaching a class on U.S. foreign policy and the Middle East.
The Geopolitical Implications of Political Change in Iran
Since the 1979 Iranian revolution that replaced a US-allied monarchy with a viscerally anti-American theocracy, few governments in the world have had a more clear and consistent grand strategy to defeat the US-led world order than the Islamic Republic of Iran. Tehran is today central to numerous U.S. national security challenges — including nuclear proliferation, energy security, terrorism, cybersecurity, and ongoing conflicts in Ukraine, Syria, and Yemen — and is closely aligned with anti-American autocracies in Russia, North Korea, Venezeula. If Tehran’s grand strategy is to be defeated, it will not be done by the United States or Israel but by the Iranians who have endured years of political repression, social intolerance, and economic misery. Among Iran's many paradoxes is a society which aspires to be like South Korea — prosperous and globally integrated — ruled by a revolutionary regime whose ideology and brutality more closely resemble North Korea. The September 2022 killing of a 22-year-old woman, Mahsa Amini, for "improper hejab", triggered nationwide protests in Iran that could potentially culminate into one of the most geopolitically consequential regime implosions since the 1991 fall of the USSR.