Hassan Rouhani: Sheep or Wolf?

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Hassan Rouhani is the new Iranian president.
This blog would like to wish him a fruitful term and may he truly serve the interests of the Iranian People...

The Western media judged the president-elect as moderate - as if westerners had the need to be assured that Iran could produce "moderate" politicians. However there are some details that should not be overlooked: Mr Rouhani is a cleric who participated in the Iranian Islamic Revolution, in 1979; who was connected to the late Ayatollah Khomeini (the founder of the Islamic Republic) and who was the chief nuclear negotiator from 2003 to 2005 (when he confessed that Iran had been duping the West: "While we were talking with the Europeans in Tehran [about suspending enrichment], we were installing equipment in parts of the facility in Isfahan"). This background doesn't quite work in his favour as a moderate.

Iran is, presently, a theocracy with democratic characteristics. The prospective Presidential Candidates have to be approved by the Guardian Council (which is the same as saying that candidates are to be analysed and selected according to the Ayatollah's best interests); then after much conservative deliberation, the Iranian electorate will choose from the vetted candidates and elect a president; knowing though that the Supreme Leader retains the last word on issues, mainly on foreign affairs and on the nuclear programme (in his words "A nuclear arsenal would serve Iran as a deterrent in the hands of God’s soldiers").

President-elect Rouhani made some interesting statements:
1. "You should know the nuclear issue and the sanctions will also be resolved, and economic prosperity will also be created."
2. "I said it is good for centrifuges to operate, but it is also important that the country operates as well and the wheels of industry are turning."
3. "What I truly wish is for moderation to return to the country. This is my only wish. Extremism pains me greatly. We have suffered many blows as a result of extremism."
4. "Social woes have been on the rise over the past years. I do believe that the only way to resolve these problems is decentralisation. Our problems will not be resolved as long as only the government is in charge of our cultural affairs."

A priori, these words do offer some comfort and assurance that Iran is stepping into the threshold of change. However, as the president-elect continues to talk in public, his rhetoric slowly morphs into subtle warnings:

1."The nations who tout democracy and open dialogue should speak to the Iranian people with respect and recognise the rights of the Islamic republic."
2. "The sanctions are unfair, the Iranian people are suffering, and our (nuclear) activities are legal."
3."These sanctions are illegal and only benefit Israel."

Looking closely at these words, we realise that Ayatollah Khamenei - in his attempt to mislead the world into relaxing sanctions - has left his fingerprints behind.
Change doesn't seem to be on Iran's agenda after all, for:

  • it still obsesses over getting - instead of gaining - the West's respect (revealing, thus, a complex of inferiority),
  • it still fails to comprehend that its rhetoric wards off potential diplomatic partners,
  • it still refuses to take responsibility for its nuclear stubbornness, 
  • it still rejects the principle of self-accountability,
  • it still obsesses over Israel instead of focusing on solving its own issues.

Although the wording is changing; we must not precipitate ourselves...
Beware of those who "come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves." (Matthew 7:15)

Comments

  1. Let us give him some time. He is a great deal better than his low life predecessor. I also suspect that he is more tuned to modern Iran's expectations and aspirations than anyone else there at the moment.

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    1. Hey Rummy :D!

      Well, Ahmadinejad was "entertaining" (to put it mildly). I am not saying that President Rouhani won't rule properly, I am just saying that he is not as moderate as he wants us to believe he is. Plus, Ayatollah Khamenei has the last word in everything, so...
      But we wish Hassan Rouhani a fruitful term.

      You may have a point. Let's wait and watch.

      Rummy, thank you ever so much for your great comment :D.

      Cheers

      Delete
  2. We can give Rouhani all the time in the world yet he will reveal himself as another Khamenei puppet. I agree that this smooth talk is to fools us into relaxing sanctions. When he said that extremism pains him and created a lot of problems to Iran, he meant it as "That idiot (Ahmadinejad)didn't know how to fool the west and now I will have double work in doing just that for the Ayatollah. I have done it before"!!
    Max, Max, Max...you said the same as Rummuser about Hollande and look what happened in France!

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    1. Hi Ana :D!

      The domestic strategy seems to be changing though. Now he is asking the internet to be accessed freely; he also urged the government to stay away from people's lives; he is criticising info filtering etc - but once again, this is for domestic consumption (which is what the president, in Iran, is supposed to do). What concerns us if Iran's foreign policy and the nuclear programme, which are in the thus far inflexible Supreme Leader's hands...so, I don't know.

      lol You are right about Hollande and France *nodding*...

      Ana, thank you so much for your comment :D.

      Cheers

      Delete
  3. Rouhani is a big bad wolf; make no mistake!

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    1. Hi Anonymous :D!

      Thanks for your comment :D.

      Cheers

      Delete
  4. Iran should really pay attention to what happened in Egypt today. If Iranians really want change then they must be willing to get it but not doing anything and then talk crap against the government won't cut it! Egyptians are the proof that when a people want change they get it no matter what! As for Rouhani: he is just another Ayatollah toy...

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    1. Hi Adam :D!

      How's tricks?

      Egypt's second revolution does send a strong message, doesn't it?
      You may have a point there. Only Egypt is not Iran - the Persians are different. Besides, they are weighing the costs and benefits of doing such revolutions.

      Adam, thank you for your comment :D. Always a pleasure.

      Cheers

      Delete
  5. I belive in Mr Rouhani, he really wants change! Look at what he said to the clerics (including the ayatollah):
    "A strong government does not mean a government that interferes and intervenes in all affairs. It is not a government that limits the lives of people. This is not a strong government."
    If that's not change I don't know what is!

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    1. Hey Celia :D!

      You do? President Rouhani's words were directed at his domestic audience; plus, as Iran's president it is his duty to deal with Iranian day-to-day business. But what concerns the international business is Iran's foreign policy and the nuclear programme, which is in the hands of Ayatollah Khamenei (who had the final word on these two subjects) - given these facts are there much room for change?

      Celia, my dear, thank you so much for your comment :D.

      Cheers

      Delete
  6. "A newly elected Iranian president Hasan Rowhani was allegedly involved in plotting the deadly 1994 attack on a Jewish community center in Buenos Aires , according to the indictment filed in the case. The attack, attributed to Iran and carried out by the terrorist group Hezbollah, killed 85 people and injured hundreds. The 2006 indictment names Rowhani as a member of the committee headed by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei that planned the bombing, the deadliest attack of its kind in Argentinian history." just to make us stop and think a bit about this so called moderate!

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    1. Hey Anonymous :D!

      Very interesting indeed. Where did you get this info from (if you don't mind my asking)?
      This should definitely make us think...

      Anonymous, thank you ever so much for this piece of information :D.

      Cheers

      Delete
  7. would a sheep reveal herself as a wolf? would a wolf reveal himself as a sheep?
    in the first case most probably would be eaten by its pairs.... in the other case would be to scare the catle... my perception is that nowadays leaders are puppets in someoneelses hands...and so what to do then?i people so powerless that can't take is own destiny? "we all work for someoneelse" - well not all - but we should accomplish someones agenda... family-> parents | company-> Boss | society->government | government - > People (?)
    People should try to get really free!
    all th best
    Gallardo

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    1. Ciao G :D!

      I can think of a case or two when a sheep revealed itself to be a damned wolf. I never saw a wolf revealing itself as a sheep though.
      You make an excellent case: we all work for someone else, somehow.

      "People should try to get really free!"

      I believe you are the second commenter who says this. And yes, they should.

      Gallardo, thank you so much for your great comment :D.

      Cheers

      Delete
  8. Can't agree more with your thoughts. I guess it would be Iran's best interest to synergise itself more with democratic principles and take its citizen along to provide a better way of life to them rather than to create a false bogey of fear against the West and parrot itself with the timeless rhetoric's. Its time it accepts that the country's best interest would be served in an inclusive growth rather to remain in a cage in self glossy imagery and participate in an all conclusive global order. Maybe it should see the history of the last 5 to 6 decades and gaze that the world order has changed dramatically and prevent itself from staying decades back still, which won't serve itself anyhow or the others.

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    1. Hey K :D!

      Hear! Hear! *applauding*

      In Portugal, when we like a speech we say "Ah, Fadista!!" (Fadista = Fado singer, whose singing usually touches the core)...and that expresses well my thoughts on your comment.

      Kalyan, thank you ever so much for your input, man :D. Awesome.

      Cheers

      Delete
  9. Rouhani's time in England means that he can tell the west what they want to hear in words that westerners think contain meaning and substance. My interpretation of the election is that the Iranian people think a bit more deft politician would be beneficial for the managing and manipulating of Western intellectual elites.

    But I am wondering, is the Iranian president a leader? Or is he more like a spokesman and chief ambassador? Of course I don't know anything about Iran's governmental structure.

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    1. Hi Looney :D!

      You know it. And it sort of worked, didn't it? The Western leftist media jumped of joy at this "moderate" president and were filled with "hope".

      lol Excellent question! I don't think he is a leader (as per our definition of leader) because he does not have the autonomy to politically think and decide by himself - the Ayatollah does that for him. Ahmadinejad tried to be independent and look at the mess he had to face (his authority was constantly questioned in public by the Supreme Leader). Having said that, the Iranian president is more like a chief ambassador, I'd say.

      Looney, thank you for your great comment :D. Always a pleasure.

      Cheers

      Delete
  10. Happy Birthday Max! Hope you're doing great and that you have a wonderful time on your birthday.

    Kisses and hugs.

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    1. Hi Liza :D!

      Thank you *bowing*. I am doing great, thanks - getting ready for my summer break. Thanks for having remembered :D.

      Kisses and hugs, darling!

      Cheers

      Delete

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Dissecting Society welcomes all sorts of comments, as we are strong advocates of freedom of speech; however, we reserve the right to delete Troll Activity; libellous and offensive comments (e.g. racist and anti-Semitic) plus those with excessive foul language. This blog does not view vulgarity as being protected by the right to free speech. Cheers