12. Will Ali Khameini cease to be Supreme Leader of Iran in 2023?
resolved Jan 1

This is question #12 in the Astral Codex Ten 2023 Prediction Contest. The contest rules and full list of questions are available here. Market will resolve according to Scott Alexander’s judgment, as given through future posts on Astral Codex Ten.

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In general people like to predict and bet on such changes more than they actually happen in any given year. I am sad I missed out on the really good sales early but this still seems like a screaming sale. I bought M500 of NO bringing this down to 25%.

- Zvi Mowshowitz

predicted YES

Pardoning so many people at once like this screams of total desperation. Is the Ayatollah seeking to appease the masses in hope they will back him against a challenge to his absolute power? One less talked about option for an Iranian revolution would be simply taking away his dictatorship and having a constitutional theocracy with a president that is the chief executive instead of the Ayatollah’s spokesperson.

bought Ṁ500 of NO

Why is this so high? Iirc the pretests aren't that large and he's not that likely to die? Someone care to explain?

predicted YES

@NathanpmYoung I think it's likely because he is no longer an effective leader and the current president is widely considered the likely successor making an early retirement the smart move. Especially after the last/only time they had a transition was totally unplanned and almost a disaster. If that happens today it's pandemonium and probably revolution.

bought Ṁ10 of YES

@NathanpmYoung another reason to think the Ayatollah's days are numbered is the nature of the newly ensconced government in Israel. I think they will be more aggressive than ever before in their attempts to weaken and undermine the Iranians on all fronts using the harsh treatment of protesters as the pretense.

predicted YES

@NathanpmYoung Today he pardoned tens of thousands of political prisoners. Is that the move a strong Muslim political leader would make or the last ditch Hail Mary of a flailing octogenarian about to be Gaddafied or Mussolinied on the streets of Tehran by a bunch of liberated women??

predicted YES

@NathanpmYoung Plus have you been paying attention to Netanyahu, and particularly his cabinet ministers?? A weak Ayatollah will be like chum in the water to a government that is not going to waste their once in a generation opportunity to push the limits of their regional hegemony and stoke the chaos threatening their most determined and dangerous enemies in Tehran. Even US intelligence estimates Iran will have everything they need to assemble a nuke by the end of the year. In what universe do you think Bibi is going to sit by and see what happens?? This is his dream come true scenario.

@BTE US intelligence had been estimating that Iran will be able to assemble a number within a year for at least two decades.

predicted YES

@NickAllen Look at what Kim is doing with even less than they have in Iran. The IAEA has confirmed they are close in terms of enriching uranium. This is not unthinkable.