Ahmadinejad Plays the Strong President

Die Welt, Germany

In Iran's Version of Democracy, West Remains Whipping Boy


"Iran's revolutionary leader, Ali Khamenei, demands a strong president and defends Ahmadinejad as such. … Ahmadinejad has supplemented his financial promises to voters with a warning to the West that the 'idol of Zionism must be crushed.' ... He insists that the 'Islamic Revolution has long since been exported,' and that even in America, Muslims shout the slogans of the Islamic Revolution."


By Dr. Wahied Wahdat-Hagh*



Translated By Alexandra Griffiths


May 23, 2009


Germany - Die Welt - Original Article (German)

President Ahmadinejad promotes himself with promises of money domestically and with military strength abroad. Uncontroversial he is not. But the Iranian revolutionary leader, Ali Khamenei, demands a strong president and defends Ahmadinejad as such.


One conservative opponent of President Ahmadinejad and head of a news agency called Alef.ir is Ahmad Tavakkoli (photo, left). He has publicly criticized Ahmadinejad for quoting false statistics to listeners in Islamshahr on April 24, 2009 - and for supposedly passing on this false information to the "Leader," Ali Khamenei.


Indeed, Ahmadinejad did promise needy Iranians a monthly subsidy of €46 [$64]. Tavakoli claims that the sum had first been brought up in the Islamic "parliament," the Majlis. Tavakkoli added that gas prices had quadrupled and diesel prices had increased 21-fold. In real terms, a family of five in need would not get the equivalent of around $320, but at best around, around $110, Alef reported on April 25, 2009.




The question of subsidising every Iranian was put to the research institute of the Majlis, which concluded that Iranians may perhaps receive the equivalent of between $14 and $30, depending on their budgets, and not $64 that Ahmadinejad had spoken of during his speech in Islamshahr. At the time, Ahmadinejad had also threatened the destruction of Israel. Such threats tend to stoke the atmosphere, particularly at such mass events.


Ahmadinejad supplemented his financial promises with a warning to the West that the "idol of Zionism must be crushed." This is arguably just another genocidal anti-Zionist euphemism by the Iranian president, which is a characteristic of the totalitarian ideology of the Iranian dictatorship. He said, "They should know that the free peoples, the Iranian people and the inhabitants of Islamshahr will not accept this modern idol worship. They will powerfully shatter these idols." The Iranian president insisted that the "Islamic Revolution has long since been exported," and that even in America, Muslims shout the slogans of the Islamic Revolution.




Then there's Mehdi Karrubi (photo, right), an Ahmadinejad rival who wants reform but has so far been unable to implement any. On April 28, Roozonline reported that he criticized the current president for "stealing" his "election platform." 



If elected, Karrubi also promised Iranians additional financial aid. Both Ahmadinejad and Karrubi are suspected of wanting to buy votes with promises of money.


Mir-Hossein Mousavi (photo, left) is another of Ahmadinejad’s rivals. He warned during a speech at a gathering of workers against being taken in by the promises of the current president and said, "A painkiller can sometimes be dangerous. People are happy for a short while, but in the long run it will be fatal." He likened Ahmadinejad's speech to a painkiller with only short-term effects.




Even Abbas Abdi [photo, left], another willing but incapable intellectual reformer, said in an interview with the Roozonline on April 28, 2009, "There is currently no foundation on which to base democratic demands and reforms." The political powers are "not in a position to seriously pursue such demands. The balance of power doesn’t allow for the implementation of such slogans."


According to [Supreme Leader] Ali Khamenei, "convictions of the Iranian people on the international stage must be resolutely defended, so that the world recognizes the greatness of the people’s choice." According to Kayhan's May 17 edition, he previously criticized domestic forces who, "put themselves on the side of the great powers" and don't defend Iranian interests.



Meanwhile, President Ahmadinejad has announced the successful test of a new long-range missile. The Sajil-2 has a range of 1,240-1,865 miles and can even reach targets in Europe.


*Dr. Wahied Wahdat-Hagh was born on October 20, 1957 in Ludwigsburg, in southern Germany. He's a senior research fellow at the European Foundation for Democracy in Brussels. He received his PhD at the Freie Universität Berlin. His dissertation, 'The Islamic Republic of Iran: The Rule of Political Islam as a Form of Totalitarianism,' was published in 2003.











































[Posted by WORLDMEETS.US May 28, 2:06am]