Sunday, September 23, 2007

previous entry | main | next entry | TrackBack (0)

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is here to enlighten America

I think some Bush administration officials are laboring under some serious misconceptions with regard to Iran. Their unstated belief is that the mass Iranian public is ready to oust President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, and their conservative acolytes. All they need is some external nudge -- like a good dose of bombing -- for the state to collapse.

In contrast, everything I've heard or read from Iran experts suggests that on the streets of Tehran, Ali Q. Publiq feels a strong sense of national pride about the nuclear program. It's the one thing that Ahmadinejad has found to boost his domestic standing. So this view among Bush officials is not only untrue, it's a patronizing view of ordinary Iranians. They are perfectly capable of disliking Ahmadinejad, desiring a strong Iran, and preferring not to be bombed at the same time.

It should be pointed out, however, that Bush administration officials are not the only ones suffering from this kind of delusion. There's also.... Mahmoud Ahmadinjad himself. From the AP's Ali Akbar Dareini:

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Sunday that the American people are eager for different opinions about the world, and he is looking forward to providing them with "correct and clear information," state media reported.

The hardline Iranian leader left Sunday for New York to address the U.N. General Assembly and speak to students and teachers during a forum at Columbia University....

Ahmadinejad said his visit will give Americans a chance to hear a different voice, the official IRNA news agency reported.

"The United States is a big and important country with a population of 300 million. Due to certain issues, the American people in the past years have been denied correct and clear information about global developments and are eager to hear different opinions," Ahmadinejad was quoted by IRNA as saying.

State-run television also quoted Ahmadinejad before boarding his presidential plane Sunday as saying that the General Assembly was an "important podium" to express Iran's views on regional and global issues.

Oh Mahmoud, I'm not sure how to put this gently, so I'll put it bluntly: Americans are perfectly capable of disliking George W. Bush and disliking you and your thuggish regime even more. Your past actions and statements have rendered you as a less than credible purveyor of "correct and clear information." Any belief of yours that Americans will be persuaded by your rhetoric is a mistaken one.

Ironically, the AP story also reports that the people who are fretting the most about Ahmadinejad's trip to New York are.... other Iranians:

Ahmadinejad's visit to New York is also being debated back home. Some in Iran think his trip is a publicity stint that hurts Iran's image in the world.

Political analyst Iraj Jamshidi said Ahmadinejad looks at the General Assembly as a publicity forum simply to surprise world leaders with his unpredictable rhetoric.

"The world has not welcomed Ahmadinejad's hardline approach. His previous address to the Assembly didn't resolve any of Iran's foreign policy issues. And no one expects anything better this time," he said.

Independent Iranian analysts also criticized Ahmadinejad for making the trip, saying his anti-Western rhetoric makes life for Iran more difficult.

"Many experts believe Ahmadinejad's previous two visits brought no achievement ... rather, it heightened tensions," the reformist daily Etemad-e-Melli, or National Confidence, said in an editorial Sunday.

UPDATE: A clarification -- just because I think Ahmadinejad is deluded about American attitudes -- actually, I think he's deluded in general -- doesn't mean that I don't fully support Columbia University's decision to host a forum for him.

posted by Dan on 09.23.07 at 06:41 PM


This will be an eternal disgrace for Columbia University and the city of New York.

I thought Karl Rove was spewing hatred when he spoke of how liberals wanted to offer therapy to the enemies of the country after 9/11.

I can now understand where he was coming from. There are indeed liberals who think that the US can rationalize and have a dialog with radical islamic fundamentalists. If only we "understood" these radicals, we could all get along!!

Liberal Naivete is even worse than the treachery that they are often accused of. Bollinger is an absolute idiot for doing this.

I wonder if has anything to say about the Iranian presidents visit - oh wait a minute, they slime only American military leaders.

My bad.

posted by: NS on 09.23.07 at 06:41 PM [permalink]

The simple fact is that Bush is a MUCH MUCH MUCH MUCH bigger criminal than Ahmadinejad. In 4 years Bush has caused vastly more death, chaos and destruction in Iraq than Saddam did in 25 years.

Oh, and I agree that Ahmadinejad's does indeed run a thuggish regime. The problem with Dan's statement above is that he seems to imply that Ahmadinejad is somehow more "thuggish" than Bush. Ahmadinejad's crimes amount to aproximately a couple hundred people who have been imprisoned unfairly, and probably several dozen unfairly killed. Bush has caused massive ethnic cleansing and massacres in Iraq (just to name one country he destroyed). It is just ironic and stupid for right-wing Americans to criticize Iran without looking deeply in the mirror. Sure, Iran has serious problems. But the USA is the modern Rome... destroying and stealing everything it touches. Iran crimes pale in comparison.

posted by: Joe M. on 09.23.07 at 06:41 PM [permalink]

Let him talk. He cannot be but his true self. Would you buy an original hand made Persian rug from him?

posted by: jaim klein on 09.23.07 at 06:41 PM [permalink]


Ahmadinejad has already been to New York:,%20Mahmoud

I don't really think it's fair to say that inviting someone to speak means tacitly endorsing their viewpoints. If anything, it give MA a chance to put his vile character on display for Americans.

posted by: Troll on 09.23.07 at 06:41 PM [permalink]

I can just picture Bush with his fingers in his ears saying 'la, la, la, la, la, ..'

posted by: Lord on 09.23.07 at 06:41 PM [permalink]

In your worldview, what do you suggest? Do you suggest we bomb them?

posted by: Joe Klein's conscience on 09.23.07 at 06:41 PM [permalink]

" A clarification -- just because I think Ahmadinejad is deluded about American attitudes -- actually, I think he's deluded in general -- doesn't mean that I don't fully support Columbia University's decision to host a forum for him."

You better look out, Dan. Duncan Hunter's decided to getya for that:

This, of course, is Standard Operating Bullshit (Political Subdivision) -- like Rep. Tom Davis' demand today that the House investigate the Times MoveOn ad (complete with sworn testimony!) -- but this particular clown is ranking Republican on the House Armed Services Committee, and he's also running for President (although not getting anywhere). Isn't it reassuring that the GOP is so much on the barricades to protect our traditional American freedoms from the threat of Islamic dictatorship?

posted by: Bruce Moomaw on 09.23.07 at 06:41 PM [permalink]

Joe Klein's conscience,
Please... thats a cheap shot - Simply because a regime is detestable does not automatically mean it should be bombed. If that were the criteria, there would be very few countries left standing.

This Columbia Univ farce did have one use for people here - any one who listened to this crazy guy speak of how "freedom flows" in Iran can indeed attest to his delusional thinking.

It is downright scary to even think of what could happen if a radical Islamic theocracy with a deluded nutjob of a leader like Ahmadinejad gets hold of nuclear weapons. If that happens Iranians can kiss their dreams of being a free people a permanent goodbye.

posted by: NS on 09.23.07 at 06:41 PM [permalink]

"Any belief of yours that Americans will be persuaded by your rhetoric is a mistaken one"

I seriously doubt your statement given what I've read on American blogs, and even one of the commenters here

posted by: khomeini on 09.23.07 at 06:41 PM [permalink]

Post a Comment:


Email Address:



Remember your info?