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This excerpt from "Terror and Tehran" examines the legacy of Iran's 1979 Islamic Revolution and the country's current struggle between democracy and religious authority.

Asked to name the one great achievement that remains from 1979, Massoumeh Ebtekar, a former student revolutionary and now a vice president in Mohammad Khatami's reformist government, tells FRONTLINE: "I think the greatest achievement is the independence of a nation. And also to create a new experience on the basis of a religious democracy."

But the economist Fariborz Raisdana, who was part of a reformist group that tried unsuccessfully to run in the parliamentary elections of 2000, says, "The problem arises because some minority that believes that they are the real representative of God, and the Islam, are in power, and they do not accept the competition, the innovation of the people, the participation of the people, democracy, social justice. ... They do not accept it." He tells FRONTLINE that many of his reform group's members are now in jail.

"You have a battle raging, not for control over territory but for the the soul of a nation," says Elaine Sciolino of The New York Times, author of Persian Mirrors: The Elusive Face of Iran (2000). "And it's between these two impulses -- belief and democracy. And belief doesn't allow for democracy."

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