There is a consistent thread in much of the mainstream media coverage about Iran and its new president – Hassan Rouhani – suggesting there is going to be a new, moderate approach. For example, the Guardian reports:
Hassan Rouhani sworn in as president of Iran, urging moderation and respect
Cleric marks inauguration with speech on transparency, equal rights for women and need for dialogue rather than sanctions
The BBC says:
Mr Rouhani promised a government of “wisdom and hope.” It was a phrase he chose to repeat throughout his speech. He also repeated the word “moderation” and said that he would distance himself from fantasy – that’s perhaps an implicit criticism of his predecessor Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
So he must be a good guy, mustn’t he?
And when people – like Labour’s Douglas Alexander – criticize the British government decision to decline the invite to the inauguration, we can see where he is coming from in the light of all this moderation.
There is just a wee bit of a
flipping huge fly in the ointment.
It would be good to know what Douglas Alexander would have expected the UK representative to do when the rest of the invitees to the inauguration ceremony were asked to chant “Death to those who oppose the Supreme Leader, Death to America, Death to England, Death to Israel” as seen in this clip from yesterday’s inauguration ceremony?
See the clip (and the full article by Potkin Azarmehr) at For a democratic secular Iran here.
Perhaps the British government were not so daft after all.
Perhaps there are different definitions of moderate. For example, they were only moderately wanting death for America, England (sic) and Israel, as opposed to really, really, really wanting these countries to die. (George Orwell must be having a right good laugh in his grave.)
So, just be on watch for more moderate coverage of that nice cleric from Iran.
It would be good if the so called moderation translated into real deeds of moderation. The emphasis is on “if”, because on the basis of what we have seen so far, the core of hate remains.
Bonus question: why do none of the mainstream media mention these death threats? Your answers in an email please, addressed to email@example.com.
[First seen at Harry’s Place.]