Former TV chief launches unofficial campaign
November 19, 2004
I guess the Iran presidential election would eventually come
down to a dirty fight between former president Akbar
Rafsanjani and former head
of state radio and TV (IRIB),
But Larijani, very close advisor to the Supreme Leader, is
not very well-known in the West, despite his crucial position among
young conservative politicians in Iran. He is known to be one
of their greatest strategists who has been leading the gradual
effective crackdown on the entire reform movement. He has a PhD
in philosophy and before he headed the IRIB for the past
ten years, he was a top officer in the Revolutionary Guards.
In a clear sign of his ambitions for the upcoming presidential
election, he started a
daily column based on his diary, in
most popular newspaper which is run by the IRIB and founded
by Larijani himself during the second half of his term. (A close
his, Ezzat Zarghami, now runs the IRIB, while Larijani has no position
in the administration, probably to prepare for his campaign).
Reading the first parts of the diary, which talks about the process
of him being appointed by Khamanei as the head of IRIB, it strikes
me as nothing but an official launch of his run for president.
His puts strong emphasis on personal ties with the Supreme
his great respect for his wife and family, and his skills and interests
as a university professor who teaches Philosophy of Science in
Tehran University. (He even mentions the English names of the articles
he is reading to prepare himself for the next lecture.)
It's a lot of fun reading Larijani's diary because of his particular
stiff and cold tone, even when he writes about emotional things,
but and it's also very revealing in terms of behind-the-scenes
To me it looks like a blog, written -- possibly -- ten years
ago, and published now, with a personal point-of-view and interesting
details about the life of one of the brightest stars of the conservative
camp who I guess is the ultimate hope of the Supreme Leader to
lead the country for the next eight years.
Strange that no one has picked it up yet in the press.