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Ahmadinejad the dangerous man, revisited

by name Mon Dec 12th, 2005 at 07:18:08 AM EST

Last week Jerome posted an article which he titled "The Iranian President is a dangerous man". Jerome quotes some offensive (to western ears) comments supposedly made by Iranian President Ahmadinejad on the Pakistani website Dawn. The Dawn article in turn is from Reuters, which  attributes Ahmadinejads comments to Iran's news agency IRNA (slow !) without giving further details. I want to revisit the characterization of Ahmadinejad as a dangerous man a) because the discussion of that article was far from satisfying and b) I think that we have all been had by the shallow reporting from Reuters, upon which lastly Jerome commented, we commented and lastly a brawl resulted.


I have in the meantime taken the trouble of looking at the IRNA website - they have an english section - but i could not find the comments attributed to Ahmadinejad, at least in the articles posted since last friday (then the server went "502 Dead Gateway"). I could only find one article where somebody from the iranian govt complains that the response of the european govts to Ahmadinejad's comments are supposedly not corresponding to international diplomatic usances, no specifics.

So why revisit the issue ? As said above, I think the we, the commenters on Jeromes original article have all been had by shallow reporting, because of not having had enough background, because in short we were squabbling over the secondary issue of Ahmadinejads supposed (until I find them at IRNA or another non-western, non-Reuters website) provocative comments instead of discussing the far more important issues he presents in his speech before the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC-OCI) in Jeddah last Thursday.

So why, and to whom, IS Ahmadinejad dangerous ? shortest, after reading his speech he does not come across as a kook to me. A bit longer, he is dangerous to the West because he follows a line of economic policies which is independent of and contrary to western economic and political interests (mostly one and the same IMO). What I mean is that he obviously knows what he is doing (and saying), he knows where his limits are, he understands where the interests of his country and their political castes are.

Judging from his speech before the OIC-IOC, the man is anything but a kook, he is far from preoccupied with shallow provocations against people who have by their past actions and words shown that they are themselves dangerous fools. To me, it looks like Ahmadinejad's preoccupations are (in no specific order) the economic development of his country, technological development of his country, unity of the muslim countries, establishing trade relations with other countries, development for the muslim world, repelling the economic, cultural, military agression of the west against the muslim world and his country - and in the context of this aggression he sees Israel's role of point man.

So, if we are to judge Ahmadinejad as a dangerous man, we should do so because he is intent on extricating his country from the eternal thieving of the "West", because he wants to develop his country, because by doing so he commits a mortal sin against the edicts (.PDF) of the PNAC, wherein it is stipulated that no country should aspire to the role of even a regional power because the US is predestined to be the king of the hill for centuries of centuries amen - a new version of the burden of the white man.

Whatever Ahmadinejad's credentials or his history, his speech and presence at that conference offer a stark contrast to the other mandataries from islamic countries -  all of whom have well known credentials of being either toadies various some western country, of taking CIA/BND/MI6/... contracts to torture desparecidos of muslim creed because of the vast experience they have gained while murdering and torturing their own citizens for western interests, of producing and exporting various kinds of drugs to the west, of conniving with western interests (uh, them again ...) to steal the wealth of their countries, of heading incredibly corrupt regimes, or all of the above and more.

For those interested, Ahmadinejad's whole speech is here.

And for those interested in jumping on me and calling me names because of secondary issues, I excerpt the parts of his speech which deal with the Palestine issue, below.

[...]

4. Among the old challenges facing the Islamic world is the existence of the occupier Zionist regime. More than fifty years, Muslims have suffered from the aggressions of this regime. Huge human and financial resources have gone away in this struggle. This existence of such a regime that enjoys the full support of the  United States poses a lasting pain and anguish for the Muslim Ummah. The honour of our Ummah has been blemished because of the existence of these occupiers. Hardly a day passes without a young Palestinian falling in his blood, a house demolished over the head of the owner, harvest of a farmer set ablaze and olive trees cut to the ground. The existence of such a vicious and destructive force is one of the pains of the Islamic world for which we must find a solution.

[...]

We need to have full agreement among ourselves in confronting our common challenges. The usurper regime of Palestine is the shared preoccupation of the Muslim Ummah. Recognition of this regime has no justification both in our Sharia or rules of international law. How can we recognize a regime that has gained strength by aggression and occupation. I said at the UN General Assembly that return of Palestinian refugees, holding a referendum with the participation of people of Palestine origin with different religious beliefs � Muslims, Christians and Jews� is the logical way to determine the type of government in the entire Palestinian land and Al-Qods as its capital. I propose a group comprising representatives of some of the member countries of OIC to follow this up at the UN on behalf of the OIC.

I submit this in the hope that it will help spawn reasonable and constructive discussion of the issue. As a last note, I think that we need to come to terms with the idea that instinctive mistrust of all western media is warranted, because, for example, the shallow Reuters quote from Dawn which served as basis to Jeromes article did more to defame the president of a country which has had enough of western colonialism and thievery than to inform of important economic and political developments in the world around us. Without  verifiable and trustable information no informed discourse can ensue, without that informed discourse no kind of democracy can exist in the long run.

What Reuters wrote and Dawn quoted is smear for the gain of the few, not journalism.

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So what did he actually say about the holocaust?

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes
by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Mon Dec 12th, 2005 at 11:12:10 AM EST
they posted this relevant article at IRNA yesterday:

http://www.irna.ir/en/news/view/line-17/0512125186133932.htm

they are angry that the europeans are angry because of their proposal to cede some provinces here and airlift all jews from palestine.

by name (name@spammez_moi_sivouplait.org) on Mon Dec 12th, 2005 at 04:41:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
They are angry that Europe is angry at their ridiculous proposal. So what?

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Dec 12th, 2005 at 04:45:41 PM EST
[ Parent ]
May be relevant to their position, but it still does not answer Jerome's question: what did Ahmadinejad actually say about the holocaust?

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Dec 12th, 2005 at 04:47:31 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Ah yes. He may be a son of a bitch but at least he's not our son of a bitch? The guy is a religious fanatic who believes in making Iran even more repressive theocracy than it already is.

Yes, he opposes US policy - so do a lot of very nasty people.

As for Israel having no recognition in international law - actually it rather obviously does. In fact non-recognition of Israel is condemned in the same UN resolutions which call on Israel to withdraw from the occupied territories. As for what Shariah says - why the hell should anyone who isn't a Muslim fundamentalist care?

Furthermore, quite frankly, why should we care what a racist like yourself thinks about the issue? (you were kind enough to openly proclaim your allegiance to racist beliefs in the earlier Iranian President thread.) You may raise occasional legitimate issues, but then so do the wackos over at racist sites like Little Green Footballs or our own resident Islamophobic troll fredouil. Problem is that any analysis by a racist of issues involving the group which he or she is prejudiced against is inherently suspect.

by MarekNYC on Mon Dec 12th, 2005 at 12:29:53 PM EST
...the secondary issue of Ahmadinejads supposed (until I find them at IRNA or another non-western, non-Reuters website) provocative comments...

Non-Western website?
Would Al-Jazeera be agreeable to you? Or the Turks? Or the Indians? How 'bout Azerbaidjan?
Non-western enough for you?

Funny how these non-European papers don't view Ahmadinejad's comments as a "secondary issue".

Lemme see: you post outrageous comments on this site, and then call for "reasonable and constructive discussion of the issue". I suppose you'll be genuinely pained if people start taking you to task for your twisted logic. Who knows? Maybe you'll start calling us names, accusing us of dodging honest debate? Maybe that's what you're baiting us with? I couldn't care less.

Funny that, this kind of wacky characterization doesn't spawn any incentive for reasonable debate in me, just scoff.

That's not to say Ahmadinejad hasn't raised any genuine issues at all, but his spouting xenophobic crap completely drowned whatever else he had to say. And you siding with him doesn't do anything to incite us into engaging a debate with you.

Stay in Fantasyland, if that's what you wish. Hope you don't mind if we won't follow you there.

by Bernard on Mon Dec 12th, 2005 at 04:38:27 PM EST

> Lemme see: you post outrageous comments on this site,
> and then call for "reasonable and constructive
> discussion of the issue"

what is so outrageous ? i said that the content of his main speech before the OIC is far more relevant and appropriate to make him dangerous than the provocations he uttered on the side of the event. from my point of view the economic implications of his main speech are far too important to become apoplectic with rage because of his not quite appropriate commentaries on the side and let that obscure the rest.

> And you siding with him doesn't do anything to incite
> us into engaging a debate with you.

i dont side with him.

the rest of your post is one childish, hateful rant. i would somehow expect an apology because i dont see how that is warranted by anything i said.

by name (name@spammez_moi_sivouplait.org) on Mon Dec 12th, 2005 at 05:13:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]
i said that the content of his main speech before the OIC is far more relevant and appropriate to make him dangerous than the provocations he uttered on the side of the event.

I find that complete and utter rubbish. As a president, he is president 24/7, not only from nine to five office hours. I take his words, both speech and those delivered "on the side", equally relevant/appropriate.

The excerpts from his speech, denying the existence of Israel, are absurdly affronting in themselves.

And by implicating that the Holocaust is fictional there is nothing, I repeat nothing, which cannot get obscured by it. If that does not resonate with you, I don't feel much for discussing further.

In yet another spate of Israel bashing during the Gaza strip withdrawal, he dismissed any comment from other countries as follows (Source: Wikipedia):


"Westerners are free to comment, but their reactions are invalid".

Please also take the time to investigate how Ahmadinejad is firing one high-ranking employee  (ambassadors, dipomats) after another, to be replaced by fundamentalistic sycophants. I predict you: things in Iran are taking a turn for the worse.

Enough.

by Nomad on Mon Dec 12th, 2005 at 09:41:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
i dont side with him.

If that is indeed the case, how about not insisting that his hateful rants are merely "not quite appropriate commentaries on the side" or "secondary issue"?

Even if he may raise important and interesting issues, he's still an obnoxious demagogue who stole the elections.

If you want to honestly debate ideas, you can just expose them; you don't need to bring this kind of hate speech into the discussion. Even the "non-Western" media are shocked.

by Bernard on Tue Dec 13th, 2005 at 03:41:26 PM EST
[ Parent ]
> If that is indeed the case, how about not insisting
> that his hateful rants are merely "not quite
> appropriate commentaries on the side" or "secondary
> issue"?

well. first, his rants ARE NOT quite appropriate. or are you telling me that his "hateful rants" are appropriate ? second, they ARE secondary issues, because the political and economic outlooks he spoke about are far more relevant to my interests and those of almost everybody in the EU than those other, secondary remarks which he made. if the iranian president starts talking about economic policies and a political stance far more independent of western interests than it is until now, that affects me because it means in all probability a hike in the prices of oil and gas, and of everything else, if our politicos continue insisting in antagonizing the iranians and generally pissing into the wind because the iranians want to build themselves a nuclear reactor and on top get uppity and want to stop being quite the backwards and wretched colony which the capitalist dogma orders them to keep being.

to cut that down to an anecdote which even you should understand, the fact that iran signed a MoU with venezuela over $850 million for trade exchange means that changes are happening in international politics outside the abusive sphere of influence of the west. it also means that our politicos are incompetent and are not doing their job, because we, that is almost any country in europe, could have signed equvalent MoUs with iran to exchange oil for services or technology much needed by them, but no, neocon ideology dictates that iran is an integrant of the axis of evil and has to be pacified (like irak) before we deign to even talk to them.

> issues, he's still an obnoxious demagogue who stole
> the elections.

even if that is too much for your pampered german sensibilities, stealing elections is common practice in most countries, and in places like iran you would even expect that to be the case. and lest we forget, even that obnoxious demagogue bush stole three elections in row if we give credit to what many americans say, but i dont remember you saying peep about that. i also dont remember you taking your govt to task for sending troops to somalia/eritrea, what is contrary to the GG as i understand it; neither do i remember you saying much about the fact that german troops are in afghanistan; and i dont remember you ever made a fuss about your govt sending public servants to listen in on torture sessions of people kidnapped by the CIA; and i dont remember you opening your mouth over the fact that the main transit points for the illegal invasion of irak are on german territory. ...

> If you want to honestly debate ideas, you can just
> expose them; you don't need to bring this kind of
> hate speech into the discussion. Even the
> "non-Western" media are shocked.

your selection of "non-western media" sucks. just like western MSM they overblow and emotionalize non-issues, never speaking of those things which are keenly in the middle of our common interest. i suggest you read asian times - www.atimes.com - where you will find insightful articles written by people who dont indulge in yellow press antics.

and, since we are talking here about "obnoxious demagogues" and "hate speech" and other themes so dear to you, i am still waiting for you to take to the keyboard and criticize the constant threat of nuclear attacks against iran made by the US, israel and the EU,  which are all but unwarranted under international law. i dont know what speech could be more hateful than constantly keeping a whole country under threat of nuclear destruction just because the policies of their leaders dont appeal to ones discerning taste.

sorry for my lack of elocuency. 3596267773 would have been a more appropriate reply.

by name (name@spammez_moi_sivouplait.org) on Wed Dec 14th, 2005 at 08:50:04 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Thank you for showing us where you put our priorities.

Thank you for letting me know that my "selection of media sucks".

Thanks you for taking the time to check where I'm from.

And, most of all, thank you to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the Iranian President, for getting at it again.

by Bernard on Wed Dec 14th, 2005 at 04:02:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I would agree with one thing, though. We shouldn't let Ahmadinejad distract us from the rest of the stuff he says and does by focusing exclusively on his string of Holocaust denials.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Dec 14th, 2005 at 05:15:28 PM EST
[ Parent ]
> Thanks you for taking the time to check where I'm from.

That is true. I did not check because, until now, I thought that you were BernHard of www.moonofalabama.org. I did not do my homework. I beg you pardon on this one. By no means did I intend to offend you, being aware that calling a frenchman german is apt to hurt sensibilities.

by name (name@spammez_moi_sivouplait.org) on Fri Dec 16th, 2005 at 11:30:47 AM EST
[ Parent ]
No harm done; there's nothing wrong with being German (or French, or Swiss, or Kenyan, or Bolivian, or Indonesian, or...). I've actually lived in Germany for a few years.

I've always been mystified by using people's origins as a way of calling them names.

by Bernard on Sat Dec 17th, 2005 at 03:48:20 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I've always been mystified by using people's origins.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sat Dec 17th, 2005 at 07:41:58 PM EST
[ Parent ]
After all it sounds like a deliberate provocation to ask Europe to solve its own "Jewish problem."  

It was the European desire to expel Jews from Europe (or kill them) that led to the migration of Jews to Palestine in the first place.  That this has created havoc in Palestine is not, of course, a European problem.  

But before we all get too excited, let's ask someone who reads Persian what he really said.  

Somehow, I doubt there is really a story here.  

The Fates are kind.

by Gaianne on Mon Dec 12th, 2005 at 06:23:13 PM EST
own presidents statements about other lands. Let's think for a minute how they are received in those lands. Let's remember some of the actions of our own dear leader and think for a minute how they are seen abroad.
by observer393 on Tue Dec 13th, 2005 at 03:00:56 AM EST
.
is just a goddam bundle pieces of paper.

Bush told the Texas evangelist James Robison:
    "I can't explain it, but I sense my country is going to need me. Something is going to happen, and, at that time, my country is going to need me. I know it won't be easy, on me or my family, but God wants me to do it."

"I am mindful not only of preserving executive powers for myself, but for predecessors as well."
Washington, D.C., Jan. 29, 2001

Bush's Intervention in Iran Election

Result was the reformers were aligned with pro-Bush appeasement and the hardliners took most seats in parliament.

There has been another holy man reinstated in a ME country!

    Then the president turns to his recent UN address.

    "On the last day when I was speaking, one of our group told me that when I started to say 'Bismillah Muhammad', he saw a green light come from around me, and I was placed inside this aura," he says. "I felt it myself. I felt that the atmosphere suddenly changed, and for those 27 or 28 minutes, all the leaders of the world did not blink. When I say they didn't move an eyelid, I'm not exaggerating. They were looking as if a hand was holding them there, and had just opened their eyes - Alhamdulillah!"


    Latest Outrage - thanks George!

"Treason doth never prosper: what's the reason?
For if it prosper, none dare call it treason."

▼ ▼ ▼ MY DIARY

by Oui on Tue Dec 13th, 2005 at 04:42:22 AM EST
[ Parent ]
That is kinda scary.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Dec 13th, 2005 at 04:58:50 AM EST
[ Parent ]
.
Josep Borrell firmly condemns unacceptable statements made by Iranian President about Israel.
    'The latest statements attributed to the Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad are unacceptable. On my own behalf and that of the European Parliament, I firmly condemn these revolting proposals.

    I condemn them just as firmly as I did, in concert with the entire European and international community, the proposals he made on 27 October.

    Today, alas, I find myself forced to repeat what I said then, and to say it even louder: the European Parliament will always be at the forefront of the struggle against the rejection of otherness, against intolerance, and against those who seek to heighten international tensions.

    I have no doubt that I am very far from alone in deploring the fact that what we said then has had so little effect.'

Recent diaries and comments ::
Propaganda and War of Words Between Israel and Iran on Explosives?
Iranian Elections In-depth (Part V) Ahmadinejad ◊ by florida democrat
YES! Definitely - It's Him ...

"Treason doth never prosper: what's the reason?
For if it prosper, none dare call it treason."

▼▼▼ READ MY DIARY

by Oui on Tue Dec 13th, 2005 at 03:43:19 AM EST


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