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.