The implications of the Iranian elections last Friday for the parliament and the Assembly of Experts are already being hotly contested by pundits and partisans. Are the results truly, as reported, a victory for the "moderates"? Will they have any real effect on Iran's policies?
In the US, there are the mid-term elections, which mainly tell us how popular the government and its polices are with the American people. In Iran, there are the parliamentary elections, which mainly tell us how popular the Iranian government and its polices are with the regime.
It was not last summer's rollercoaster, when Iran and six world powers clinched a deal to end the decade-long impasse over Tehran's nuclear programme. But the announcement, last weekend, that Iran had fulfilled its obligations under the deal, paving the way for the lifting of international sanctions, was not without its drama.
Terrified at the prospect of an economically resurgent, potentially nuclear-armed Iran and a looming Shia-led uprising in its own oil-rich Eastern Province, Sunni powerhouse Saudi Arabia this week executed its leading Shia cleric, Sheik Nimr al-Nimr.
The official Israeli response to allegations in the Wall Street Journal that President Barack Obama ordered the National Security Agency (NSA) to spy on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as he discussed the nuclear deal with Iran has been muted.