Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad warned that enemy states will be “slapped in the face” if they do not cease interfering in Iran’s internal affairs. “The Iranian nation has for 30 years endured the actions of enemy states with magnanimity, but if you do not desist from your interference, it [Iran] will slap you in the face so hard that you will not be able to find your way back home… Ahmadinejad pointed to British interference in Iran’s post-election unrest, saying, “Some of this country’s officials thought that by launching a Persian-language channel they will be able to reach their objectives in the Islamic Republic, but they underestimated the Iranian nation’s love for the rule of its just jurisprudent [Ayatollah Khamenei].”
And now a news petulant fit, this time directed at the US’s Farsi language efforts:
Iranian lawmakers voted overwhelmingly on Sunday for a bill creating a $20 million fund intended in part to expose human rights violations by the United States, the ILNA news agency reported… The U.S. Senate passed a bill in July that would allocate $30 million for technologies to allow the U.S. government’s Farsi-language satellite and radio stations to bypass Iranian government efforts to jam their broadcasts. An additional $20 million would be set aside for developing Web sites and other technologies that will improve Iranian access to censored information. An additional $5 million is authorized for documenting information about human rights in Iran.
“We must respond in kind to America’s injustice and tyranny and the interference of this country against Iran,” Boroujerdi said, according to Press TV. The lawmakers need to vote again on the bill within six months in order to finalize it.
The WaPo goes on to muse that maybe – maybe – this might be a sign that Obama’s outreach isn’t going to work because of lingering “distrust.” Which is weird because just a few weeks ago the WaPo was channeling Scowcroft and Brzezinski on the point that The One’s charming charmfulness had gotten rid of anti-Americanism.
It is interesting that there are foreign policy experts who ritualistically intone that Iran’s paranoia over foreign interference is “unfortunately” justified and foreign policy experts who insist that we have to embrace public diplomacy and those are often the same foreign policy experts. Not there’s anything wrong in theory with trying to win Arab and Muslim hearts and minds. It’s only when State’s institutional imperatives for success run up against the reality that there’s a deep ideological conflict between the West and large swaths of the Islamic world – only then do we get our diplomats going on obsequious apology tours and our foreign media outlets broadcasting antisemitic cant.
Which also wouldn’t matter, except that’s all the time.
References and previously after the jump…
* Hello, there! [Tehran Bureau]
* Persian Paranoia [Hitchens / Slate]
* Iranians Seek Out Abuses By U.S. [WaPo]
* Huge Relief: Obama’s Awesomely Awesome Charm Means Anti-Americanism Isn’t A Problem Any More [MR]
* Which Egyptian TV Station Should Get An Obama Post-Speech Interview? [MR]
* Public Diplomacy Means Always Having to Say You’re Sorry [MR]
* State Department’s Arab TV Station: Israel Conducting “Holocaust Against 1.5 million Palestinians” [MR]
* Aww: Obama Hits The Reset Button With Al Jazeera’s Anti-American Islamist Managing Director
* Aww: Al Jazeera Reports On "Real Appreciation" For Obama In Syria
* Perfect: Iran Creates Propaganda Gold Out Of Hillary’s Empty "We Empowered The Protesters" Bragging [Video]