The Isolation of Ahmadinejad

Ahmadinejad’s estrangement at home and abroad puts entire nation at risk.

One of the most important results of the rigged presidential election of June 12, 2009, and its bloody aftermath has been the almost total isolation of the government of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and its patrons, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and top commanders of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. This isolation has taken place at both the national and international levels.

Internally, even some of Ahmadinejad’s most ardent supporters — those who, when he was first elected president in 2005, were willing to go to any lengths to justify whatever he did — are deserting him. As the vast scale of corruption, incompetence, and nepotism of his administration becomes clearer, some of the more honest fundamentalists have criticized Ahmadinejad and the men around him.

As but one example, consider the so-called Fatemi Street Fiasco. Right before the end of the Iranian year on March 20, there were several reports that some of the people closest to Ahmadinejad, most importantly First Vice President Mohammad Reza Rahimi, have been involved in embezzling as much as $35 million — a large sum by any standards, and particularly for Iran.

The fiasco acquired its name because another apparent culprit was a high-ranking manager in a state-controlled insurance company with headquarters on Tehran’s Fatemi Street. The judiciary ordered the arrest of a few people. Sadegh Larijani, the judici… >>>

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