Last Wednesday, a commander in Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps became the nation’s oil minister and the president of opec despite his being the target of international sanctions.
Back in October 2010, Iran took over the rotating presidency of opec, so the appointment of Rostam Qasemi as the country’s oil minister automatically makes him the head of the powerful international oil cartel.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had handpicked Qasemi for the position the previous week, and on Wednesday the Iranian Parliament made the decision official when an overwhelming 216 of the 264 mps members of parliament voted for him. The Guardian said Iran’s national media have interpreted the landslide vote as “a reaction by Iran’s parliament to international sanctions against the country, especially those which have targeted the Revolutionary Guards and the country’s nuclear program.”
For example, the head of the Revolutionary Guards’ public relations department called the vote “a meaningful and crucial response to the attacks against the Guards from the West’s media empire.”
The vote was an act of intentional defiance toward Western powers on Tehran’s part, which comes as no surprise given the Islamic Republic’s track record of such behavior.
Ali Motahhari, the only parliamentarian who spoke out against Qasemi’s nomination, said, “A ministerial position for a military figure in the Oil Mi… >>>