Ayatullah Ali Khamenei: Iran’s Supreme Leader

Observers with a working knowledge of Iranian politics have largely been able to shrug off President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s bluster and bullying, knowing the diminutive President must still answer to a far more powerful figure: Supreme Leader Ayatullah Ali Khamenei. Since 1989, the shadowy cleric — a former president himself — has sat at the apex of Iran’s complex hierarchy as the final word in all political and religious matters.