On Thursday Iran marks the 31st anniversary of the Islamic Revolution, which shocked the world and made political Islam a force to be reckoned with from Morocco to Malaysia.

For decades up until the revolution, Iran was ruled with an iron fist by the Pahlavi dynasty, which was considered by the West and Israel to be a firm ally.

Although nationalists and Marxists had joined with Islamic leaders to overthrow Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the former leader of Iran, tens of thousands were killed and executed by the Islamic regime afterward and the revolution ultimately resulted in an Islamic Republic.

Iranians have been divided about the regime ever since. The protests that followed the June 12 election indicate that many Iranians still support the Islamic regime, but demand more freedoms.

Many Iranians, especially abroad, do not support the theocracy at all.

On Thursday, Riz speaks with Reza Pahlavi, the son of the last shah of Iran, about how he sees the future direction of his country.

This episode of the Riz Khan show aired from Thursday, February 11, 2010.

Source: Al Jazeera