The Leader’s Course Must Take over the Country

Rooz on Line
Fecha de publicación: 
19 Nov 2012

Seven months left for the presidential elections in Iran, some analysts speculate that a number of banned newspapers will be allowed to republish and a number of prominent political prisoners will be released prior to the June 2013 elections with the goal of creating public enthusiasm to vote, individuals close to the supreme leader of the Islamic regime have said that the next president must be more coordinated with the leader.

Ahmad Elm-Alhoda, the influential Friday prayer imam of Mashhad who is also a member of the Experts Assembly on Leadership announced that the course affiliated with the supreme leader must become dominant across the country.

Ali Saeedi, the representative of ayatollah Khamenei in the Revolutionary Guards Corps made similar remarks and said, “The future president must be a person committed to ethical values and coordinated with the supreme leader.” He listed three qualities for coordination to be: in harmony with the supreme leader; commanding management skills to run the country, and; be committed to ethical values.

The future president must be a person committed to ethical values and coordinated with the supreme leader

Prior to these remarks, Saaedi made newsworthy remarks about Mahmoud Ahmadinejad during his interview with Etemad newspaper. “I see a changing evolving in Mr. Ahmadinejad. This is evident in his views, behavior and performance.” After the public row between Ahmadinejad and ayatollah Khamenei, Saeedi provided reasons for his support of Ahmadinejad in these words. “We did not have magical powers of prediction then. This appetite unfortunately belongs to people who are not genuinely doctrinaire. Relations with the US are something that Messer Hashemi (Rafsanjani), Khatami and Ahmadinejad also pursued and each wanted to accomplish this under their name. I do not understand what this nonsense (i.e., relations with the US) is that these gentlemen want to carry its medal. I really do not know what goes on in Ahmadinejad’s mind that he is talking about relations with the US. We don’t have magical powers to know what Ahmadinejad was thinking about in those days.”

This criticism of Ahmadinejad of course is not new and it began soon after his differences with the supreme leader ayatollah Khamenei went public last year. But their return is noteworthy as the incumbent is known to have ambitions of installing his protégé at the presidency.

Supreme Leader Not Responsible for Problems

As economic pressure on Iran mounts and international sanctions intensify, officials point the finger of blame on Ahmadinejad as the person responsible for the crisis. Interestingly, after the public row between Khamenei and Ahmadinejad, Ali Saeed had even said that Khamenei in fact had not supported Ahmadinejad for the 2009 presidential elections. “The supreme leader had a positive view of the goals and slogans that Ahmadinejad presented, otherwise he would not have supported him,” implying that he was deceived.

Such remarks come despite the clear evidence that Revolutionary Guard commanders and officials spoke of the implied support that the supreme leader had given to Ahmadinejad. In this regard, Ali Motahari is on record to have said, “In the 2009 presidential elections, 90 percent of Principlists (the ruling party in the Islamic republic) said that Khamenei supported Ahmadinejad.”

In early October this year, Saeedi had predicted economic problems ahead and the possibility of public protests and had warned, “The enemy is focusing on two goals: breaking public resistance to the sanctions and forcing them to protest, and second, a change by the supreme leader. We must negate both of these threats.”

Saeedi’s most recent remarks about “coordination with the supreme leader” come despite what the constitution of the country says about the qualifications of a president, which is that he must be “committed to the constitution and the supreme leader.” His qualifications are to be reviewed by the Guardians Council comprising of six individuals appointed by the supreme leader while the other six are elected by the judiciary, whose leaders are appointed by the supreme leader.

The supreme leader of the Islamic regime has had problems with all three presidents that were elected during his reign. Rafsanjani, Khatami and Ahmadinejad all had issues with Khamenei, although Ahmadinejad was initially strongly supported by him.

In a related development, Mashhad’s Friday prayer leader Ahmad Elm Alhoda said, “Today, rather than introducing a person and then launch a campaign in his support which may result in an uncertain future, it is better to completely install the leader’s course on our society. Those individuals who claim to be loyal to the supreme leader must present the evidence for this loyalty and dedication.”


Arash Bahmani