The Iran Party (Persian: حزب ایران, romanized: Ḥezb-e Irān) is a socialist and nationalist party in Iran, founded in 1941. It is described as the "backbone of the National Front", the leading umbrella organization of Iranian nationalists established in 1949. The party's total membership has never exceeded the several hundred figure.
|Founded||October 1941 as the Engineers’ Association|
|Merger of||Motherland Party|
The Iran Party's core members derived from the Iranian Engineers’ Association (Persian: کانون مهندسین ایران, romanized: Kānun-e mohandesin-e Irān). In the 1944 Iranian legislative election, five of the party's leaders, including Rezazadeh Shafaq, Ghulam'Ali Farivar, AhdulHamid Zanganeh, Hussein Mu'aven, and Abdallah Mu'azemi won seats, as well as Mohammad Mossadegh (who was not a member but the party effectively supported).
From June 1946 to January 1947, it was allied with the communist Tudeh Party and some other left-wing parties under the name United Front of Progressive Parties. Following the alliance, some members left the party in protest and established the Iran Unity Party. The party was part of the short-lived Coalition government of Ahmad Qavam in 1946.
The party helped Mossadegh establish the National Front, nationalize the oil industry and rise to power. Some members held office during Mosaddegh government. It was suppressed following the British–American backed coup d'état in 1953 and was outlawed in 1957, on the grounds that it had an alliance with the Tudeh Party of Iran ten years earlier. It was revived in 1960 and actively contributed to the National Front (II), which was disintegrated in 1963 and forced to survive secretly. Iran Party held a congress in 1964. Not much is known about the activities of the party between 1964 and the mid-1970s except of some irregular meetings and exchanging views. In 1977, alongside League of Socialists and Nation Party it revived the National Front (IV) and demanded Ruhollah Khomeini's return to Iran. In early 1979, then secretary-general of the party, Shapour Bakhtiar was appointed as the last Prime Minister by the Shah and included two Iran Party members in his cabinet. The party however denounced his acceptance of the post, expelled him and called him a "traitor". The party did not play an important role in Iranian political arena after 1979 and was soon declared banned.
Founded by mostly of European-educated technocrats, it advocated "a diluted form of French socialism" (i.e. it "modeled itself on" the moderate Socialist Party of France) and promoted social democracy and liberal nationalism. The socialist tent of the party was more akin to that of the Fabian Society than to the scientific socialism of Karl Marx. Its focus on liberal socialism and democratic socialism principles, made it quite different from pure left-wing parties and it did not show much involvement in labour rights discussions. The party is secular and believes Islam is "sacred a religion to mix with the bread-and-butter issues of daily politics."
- Splinter groups
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- Foran, John Francis (1988). Social Structure and Social Chan. University of California, Berkeley. p. 627.
Iran Party, a left-of-center noncommunist grouping of intellectuals, technocrats, professionals and students
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