Iran and Ahmadinejad

For a more nuanced and fuller view of what is going in Iran than the usual crazy quotes we get in the U.S. media from President Ahmadinejad.

Meanwhile, in Tehran, the supposedly powerful president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad still dominates the news as the glowering face of Iran; ominously, he is even a frontrunner in Time magazine’s “person of the year” poll.

But Ahmadinejad’s puffed-up persona in the western press has to be balanced against – as is too seldom done – the erosion of his rickety powerbase at home. He was elected in June 2005 on an economic platform and he will be judged on the economy. Iran is struggling with rising unemployment and surging inflation that is felt most severely by the poor, who are among his most important constituency.

Sounds a lot like, “It’s the economy, stupid.” Makes Ahmadinejad’s posturing and anti-Israeli rants looks more like attempts at deflecting attention from his inability to deliver on his campaign promises of economic prosperity before his election.

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