FLASH: Joel to appear on the Glenn Beck show on Fox at 5pm eastern Wednesday to discuss today’s shooting at the Holocaust Museum in Washington, rising anti-Semitism, and the Iranian elections on Friday.
UPDATED: Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad could lose his re-election bid on Friday. More on that in a moment.
First, disturbing new evidence suggests President Obama’s strategy too woo Iran back from the dark side is not working. Indeed, a new poll finds America’s favorable ratings among Iranians has actually gone down significantly since Obama took office. “Just 29 percent of Iranians said they have favorable views of the United States in the latest poll, which was conducted last month,” reports the Associated Press. “In a similar survey in February 2008 — nearly a year before Barack Obama became president — 34 percent had positive opinions about the U.S.” What’s more, Iran’s Supreme Leader, the Ayatollah Khamenei, responded to the President’s speech in Cairo last week by noting that Muslims hate the U.S. from the bottoms of their hearts.
What’s happening? Why were we more popular in Iran when George W. Bush was in office? Because President Bush told the truth. He didn’t kowtow to the Radicals in Tehran. He accurately described them as members of the “axis of evil.” President Obama, by contrast, keeps apologizing about American shortcomings — real and perceived — and keeps beseeching Iran’s Radicals to please, please come to the table and talk to us. Iranians by and large hate their government for lying to them and enslaving them and destroying their economy and their children’s future. They don’t respect Western leaders who legitimize the tyrants who oppress them, plain and simple.
That said, keep your eye on the Ayatollah Khamenei this week. When Iranians go to the polls on Friday, the big question will be whether the Supreme Leader believes Ahmadinejad has outlived his usefulness to the regime. Both men share a Radical, apocalptic, genocidal, Shia Muslim world view. Both believe the end of the world is at hand, the Islamic Messiah’s arrival on earth is “imminent,” and that annihilating the U.S. and Israel are central objectives to hastening the Mahdi’s arrival. Up until now, Khamenei has supported Ahmadinejad as the face and voice of such views. Does he still? We’re about to find out. The elections on June 12th are rigged. If Ahmadinejad is reelected, that will be seen as an affirmation that the Persian Hitler known as Ahmadinejad is still the valued “front man” for the Supreme Leader. If someone else wins, we’ll have to watch closely to see if that presages a mere p.r. face lift, or suggests an actual, fundamental shift away from Radical Shia eschatology. Right now, I’m expecting Ahmadinejad to win. But I really don’t know how this will play out. Anything is possible. Should be an interesting few days for everyone in the epicenter. See more below.
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WHO IS MIR-HOSSEIN MOUSAVI?
Mir-Hossein Mousavi is the Iranian presidential candidate who appears to have a shot at toppling current President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Friday. He is claiming to be a “Reformer,” and campaigning on the mantra of “change.” And the Western media is touting him as a moderate. But is Mousavi really a pro-Western, pro-democracy Reformer? He has criticized Ahmadinejad’s denial of the Holocaust, and the President’s erratic, “extremist” foreign policy because both have sullied Iran’s reputation internationally. But the preponderance of the evidence suggests Mousavi is actually a wolf in sheep’s clothing — a Radical who is soft-spoken and genteel in public.
Mousavi was very close to the Ayatollah Khomeini during the initial phase of the Islamic Revolution. Indeed, Mousavi was appointed by Khomeini to be Iran’s Prime Minister from 1980 to 1988, after serving as Iran’s Foreign Minister. Despite some policy clashes in the past, he is believed to be close to Iran’s current Supreme Leader, the Ayatollah Khamenei. They are from the same town. And they have worked together over the years to advance the Revolution. Mousavi’s record clearly suggests he is a jihadist at heart. He believes in exporting the Islamic Revolution as did his mentor. He hates Israel. He has no intention of slowing down Iran’s enrichment of uranium. His eschatology is, as yet, unknown. The big question is whether Khamenei has decided to give him — or another of Ahmadinejad’s rivals — the nod. That remains to be seen. Developing….
- In German interview, Mousavi refuses to recognize Israel
- In Financial Times interview, Mousavi refuses to suspend Iran’s enrichment of uranium, says he doesn’t see Ahmadinejad as a danger, would follow closely the policies of the Supreme Leader Khamenei
- Mousavi is believed to be close to Supreme Leader Khamenei, was born in the same town as Khamenei, and years ago helped Khamenei found a now-defunct political party in Iran called “Islamic Republic.”
- Though Mousavi is claming the mantra of “change” today, he was Prime Minister of Iran in the 1980s during the Iran-Iraq war when a million people died, he oversaw executions of political prisoners, and is believed to be politically close to Gen. Mohsen Rezaei, former head of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards for 16 years, who recently threatened to destroy Israel with one bomb
- In a speech in Iran, Mousavi calls Ahmadinejad a dictator who is lying to the people in the name of Islam
- Mousavi slams Ahmadinejad’s Holocaust denial in TV debate
- New York Times: “[Mousavi] took issue with Mr. Ahmadinejad’s constant questioning of the Holocaust, saying that it harmed the country’s standing with the rest of the world and undermined its dignity. ‘For the past four years you kept saying that the United States is collapsing,’ Mr. Moussavi said. ‘You have said Israel is collapsing. France is collapsing….Your foreign policies have been based on such illusional perceptions.’”
- MOUSAVI DURING DEBATE: “We have been told many times: ‘We believe America is being defeated and is on its way to demise.’ If that is the case, why did you travel there four times and write them two letters?….This debate began with foreign policy, and in this very field we have harmed the honor of our people, and we have disgraced our country. This has harmed our domestic development, and has caused much tension with other countries.”
- Iranian Presidential Candidate Calls Ahmadinejad an Extremist
- Ahmadinejad accuses rivals of “Hitler” campaign tactics, threatens to imprison those who have insulted him
- Ahmadinejad’s mayoral successor bans the president’s campaign posters
- Ahmadinejad accuses opponents of contact with Zionists
- (NEW) MEMRI ANALYSIS — IRANIAN HARDLINERS ARE ARGUING PUBLICLY THAT MOUSAVI IS MORE RADICAL THAT AHMADINEJAD: “The reformist camp that existed until 2005 has been wiped out by the regime, through a systematic policy which began with the 1998 assassination of intellectuals and continued following the 2005 election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Today, the only meaningful distinction is between two streams that both clearly belong to the conservative camp. Presidential candidates Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi, though often portrayed in the West as reformists, cannot really be regarded as such; rather, they belong to the old guard and to the elite of the Islamic Revolution. Both are today in their 70s, and both have held senior positions in the regime; neither were part of the reformist movement when it was active….In a June 2, 2009 press conference held by the headquarters of the conservative supporters of Mousavi, group leader Ali Davani explained that Mousavi was even more conservative than Ahmadinejad. Another group member, Reza Akrami, explained that he supported Mousavi because Mousavi accepted the four fundamentals: Islam, the Islamic Revolution, Imam Khomeini, and Supreme Leader Khamenei.”