Sunday, August 13, 2006

Ahmadinejad keeps fooling the world

First of all, I should say I didn't find anything of real substance in Ahmadinejad's interview with CBS tonight as it only gave--as I predicted earlier--Ahamadinejad a chance to turn loose another tired, nonsensical phillipic on the US and Israel. Still, there are a couple of points here I 'd like to bring to your attention as an Iranian who certainly can read deeper into Ahmadinejad's words and also a journalism major myself:

  • First of all, I was disappointed to some extent with Mike Wallace and the way he did the interview. He particullarly didn't follow up on some of Ahmadainejad's answers (which by the way, at times were totally unrelated to the question Wallace asked) such as the one about the roadside bombs in Iraq. Maybe Wallace had been told he couldn't push Ahmadinejad beyond a certain limit or even ask some off-limits question. In my opinion, there were times Wallace, as one of America's most-respected and seasond investigative journalists, could force Ahmadinejad into a corner but rather decided ( reasons I can't figure out) to let him reiterate the nonesense he always trots out .

  • Wallace also made a boo-boo when he called Bush the commander in chief of the "so-called" free world, prompting Ahmadinejad to capitalize on that by saying "The word 'so-called" that you yourself mentioned says it all.'" That was a gift from Wallace handed to Ahmadinejad on a silver plate.

  • Ahamdinejad said:"Before the revolution, the German, French, American government and the Canadian government had signed contracts with us to produce nuclear fuel inside Iran. But immediately after the establishment of the Islamic Republic, their opposition started," he said. "Right now, they are opposed to our nuclear technology. Now why is that?" The answer is very clear. The previous government of Iran under the late Shah, was a respected member of the world community who was committed to all international treaties to which it was signatory. The current regime under Khamenei and Ahmadinejad is a terrorist one which speaks of wiping another nation off the map. That's the difference. Wallace (who has interviewd Shah by the way) remained mute when Ahmadinejad asked that question.

  • On Iraq and Iran's role in causing the current atrocites there, Wallace asked" am told that your revolutionary guards, Mr. President, are taking bombs, those — those roadside bombs — the IED's into Iraq. And what they are doing is furnishing the insurgents in Iraq with the kind of material that can kill U.S. soldiers. Why would you want to do that?" Interestingly enough, Ahmadinejad didn't even bother to deny Iranian incitement in Iraq, nor did he get angry at Wallace's question. Instead he said,"Well, we are very saddened that the people of Iraq are being killed, I believe that the rulers of the U.S. have to change their mentality. I ask you, sir, what is the American army doing inside Iraq? " which means the allegations about Iran's role in attacks against the American-led forces in Iraq are indeed true (and it was as if he wanted to imply yes, we do that. What are you gonna do about it?)

  • Ahmadinejad, at one point, went so far as to threaten Bush,"Please give him this message, sir. Those who refuse to accept an invitation to good will not have a good ending or fate." This message did sound like a threat and Ahmadinejad did mean it. Keep in mind that he compares his letter to Bush to the letter Muhammad--Muslims' prophet--sent to the Persian King "khosrow Parviz", asking him to become a muslim. Khosrow Parviz refused to do so and even is said to have torn the letter. Eventually, an Islamic invasion put an end to the Persian empire.

Ahmadinejad claimed, "Today is the era of thoughts, dialogue and cultural exchanges." These words couldn't sound any emptier, coming from someone who openly calls for the destruction of another nation, and orders crackdown on the internet and satellite TV, two main channels of cultural exchanges in today's world. He preached Bush to try to love people whereas in the prisons of the regime he represents, innocent Iranians are being tortured and killed on a regular basis. He is a sham and thousands of empty words and fake smiles of the kind we saw in this interview tonight won't be able to stop the world from seeing him for what he really is: A dangerous man who--through pursuing nuclear weapons and spreading terror in the region--is pushing Iran toward an all-out disaster.