I have commented in the past weeks frequently on the alleged Iranian presidential election fraud and my growing anger about the ruthless response of the country’s leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who had maneuvered himself in a hopeless situation when prematurely and most probably unjustified supporting his hardliner populist ‘principlist’ president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad after the June 12 election.
Although I am still pretty convinced that rigged election results cannot be proved from outside the country by statistical means or by pointing at irrational results from certain ethnical groups; and that their correctness can definitely not be confirmed by telephone polls from a neighboring country three weeks before election day, the brutal crackdown and rounding up of the regime after the mass demonstrations with dozens if not hundreds of casualties, torture and show trials have severely undermined the willingness of most western commentators to let the Iranians settle their domestic disputes in their own rights.
The present power struggle seems now to take place without contribution of ‘the people’. Whether Rafsanjani, Khamenei (or his son Mojtaba), Karroubi or Mousavi finally prevails, who cares? There has probably never been such an analysis bywestern commentators of a third world’s country election than that in Iran 2 months ago.
Tomorrow’s Afghan election is already a charade, or political theater, as Eric Margolis put it in Information Clearing House. Who will win? The candidate chosen by the US and its NATO allies: corrupt and incompetent Hamid Karzai and his warlords, war criminals Mohammed Fahim and notorious Rashid Dostam.
“[All] parties are banned; only individuals are allowed to run. This is a favorite tactic of non-democratic regimes, particularly the US-backed dictatorships of the Arab world.”
As the BBC informs us, thousands of voting cards have been offered for sale and thousands of dollars have been offered in bribes to buy votes. There will be no free and fair election for the war-torn country. We will see whether Karzai will make it in the first round.
“But as international forces fight and die to allow this election to go ahead, serious questions are raised about the credibility of the process and the balance between sacrifice and reward.”
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Last Thursday, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has announced a new chapter of Iranian history. In front of Basij militia in Mashhad in Eastern Iran, in front of one of the holiest shrines of Shi’a Islam, he described the fate of his adversaries:
“A new period has begun.
“Let me take the oath of office, and wait for the government to begin its work.
“Then, we’ll seize them by their collars and stick their heads to the ceiling.”
He and his government have hurried in the meantime in commencing the first round of show trials in the Revolutionary Court, not dissimilar to Roland Freisler’s notorious People’s Court of Nazi Germany, to publicly humiliate some opposition rear ranks such as former veep Mohammad Ali Abtahi (the “blogging Mullah”) and to intimidate the bigger shots. They (Rafsanjani, Khatami, Mousavi; and brave Karroubi, who has in fact been identified in new demonstrations in Tehran today) did not attend today’s endorsement farce.
In a comical situation, the two ‘leaders’ of the Islamic Republic, for a moment, didn’t know how to finalize the act. It seemed so as if Khamenei tried to avoid any physical contact with his old and new president, who finally managed to kiss his left shoulder. What a difference to the affectionate ceremony four years ago.
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Provided being confirmed (God forbid!) by the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei , the following is the text of President elect Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s oath according to Article 121 of the Iranian Constitution:
“In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful,
“I, as President, swear in the presence of the Noble Qur’an and the people of Iran (sic!), by God, the Exalted and Almighty, that I will guard the official religion of the country, the order of the Islamic Republic and the Constitution of the country; that I will devote all my capacities and abilities to the fulfillment of the responsibilities that I have assumed; that I will dedicate myself to the service of the people (sic!), the honor of the country, the propagation of religion and morality, and the support of truth and justice (sic!), refraining from every kind of arbitrary (sic!) behavior; that I will protect the freedom (sic!) and dignity of all citizens and the rights that the Constitution has accorded the people that in guarding the frontiers and the political, economic, and cultural independence of the country I will not shirk any necessary measure; that, seeking help from God and following the Prophet of Islam and the infallible Imams (peace be upon them), I will guard, as a pious and selfless (sic!) trustee, the authority vested in me by the people (sic!) as a sacred trust, and transfer it to whomever the people (sic!) may elect after me.”
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Posted in Iran, tagged Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, election fraud, Esfandiar Rahim Mashaie, Gholam-Hossein Mohseni-Ejei, Kamran Baqeri-Lankarani, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Mohammad Jahromi, Mohammad-Hassan Saffar-Harandi, new election on July 26, 2009 |
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Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s public humiliation of ‘re-elected’ President Ahmadinejad by sending a handwritten note that the pick of Esfandiar Rahim Mashaie as his first vice president is ‘null and void’ makes an impact. Ahmadinejad’s cabinet rapidly decays. Iranian media report that three ministers have been sacked today: Intelligence Minister Gholam-Hossein Mohseni-Ejei, Culture and Islamic Guidance Minister Mohammad-Hassan Saffar-Harandi and Labor Minister Mohammad Jahromi; for criticizing the President’s decision, of course. Today’s claims that Health Minister Kamran Baqeri-Lankarani was also removed from his post were later denied, as semi-independent presstv writes.
Ahmadinejad seems to have little support in the majlis. But now it might be that the ‘re-elected’ President gets into real trouble. Since he has removed, during his first four-year term, 11 out of 21 ministers, he may face the rather weird situation of having to seek a fresh vote of confidence from Parliament for the very last days of his government. Article 136 of the Iranian Constitution demands that “[I]n case of half of the members of Cabinet are replaced, the government must seek a fresh vote of confidence from Parliament.”
The 9th Government tenure ends August 2, so there is one week left. Maybe the way is being cleared for a new election after the June 12 probable massive election fraud in favor of Ahmadinejad. Wouldn’t it be a pretty elegant loophole?
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Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s re-election was legitimate since it had been confirmed by the Leader of the Islamic Revolution. This message was spread today by Ayatollah Seyyed Ahmad Khatami, interim leader of the Friday prayers at Tehran University in an outrageous criticism of former president Mohammad Khatami who had called for a referendum on the legitimacy of the administration to end the nationwide unrest. And the nomination of Ahmadinejad’s first vice president, Esfandiar Rahim Mashaie, was not, since the Supreme Leader has expressed his dismay. Khatami urged Ahmadinejad to “obey [the leader] at the quickest time.” Mashaie, whose daughter is married to Ahmadinejad’s son, had stressed last year his strong sentiment of Iran being friend with all nations, even the U.S. and Israel. Since then, he is under fire in Iran.
While even hardliners zero in on Ahmadinejad one might intuitively think that Ali Khamenei might seek an ultimate solution for the current political impasse: firing both, the ‘re-elected’ president and his veep. Irrespective of legitimacy.
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