In Tunisia, a small, homogeneous state on the southern Mediterranean, a popular uprising forced the overthrow of a long-ruling dictator in early 2011. Ruthless repression of mass protests failed. In just one month, Tunisians ousted an entrenched authoritarian regime.
In Iran, a mass uprising that lasted six months was brutally suppressed. The Green Movement of 2009 never became a "Green Revolution." Instead, an entrenched authoritarian regime reasserted its authority. The regime's violent repression succeeded. The opposition was broken, and the regime has since tightened its grip on power.