CNN’s Fareed Zakaria re: Iran

July 3, 2009

CNN’s FAREED ZAKARIA weighs in on Iran.

Evidently there are at least three politicians who aren’t going to recognize AHMADINEJAD.

Presidential candidate MEHDI KARRUBI wrote a letter in his party’s newspaper (which caused the paper not to be published), saying that he would not recognize the government and vowed to “stand by the people and the revolution, until the end of my life.”

Hope that doesn’t give anyone any ideas.

Ahmadinejad’s main presidential rival, MIR HOSSEIN MOUSSAVI released a statement Wednesday criticizing the government and its crackdown on the media, which he said has created a “bitter, coup d’etat atmosphere” in Iran.

Iran’s former reformist President MOHAMMAD KHATAMI called on Iranians to keep up the struggle, noting that “all doors are not yet closed.”

They’ve each got to have their own supporters. And how many who were behind ahmadinejad changed their minds when they saw what was happening in the street to their own neighbors? How many people in Iran even know about NEDA?

The situation is fluid. The challenger, Mir Hossein Moussavi, and the former president, Khatami, are still criticizing the government for stealing the election. That is an extraordinary level of dissent at the highest levels of the establishment. But the most likely outcome remains that for now, the regime will be able to reassert order.

But it has become a naked dictatorship, losing the facade of the Islamic and democratic political ideals that are important to it.

And what about the “holy men”? Are any of them in favor of peace? Blaming Infidels and putting UK embassy workers on trial are not going to fly anymore.

Iran’s nuclear program?

Zakaria: I would say do nothing. Inaction can be a strategy. The five major powers on the U.N. Security Council (plus Germany) have given Iran a very generous offer to restart the nuclear negotiations. It has not responded. Until it does, the West should build support for tougher sanctions and more isolation.

Until we hear from Tehran, there is no reason for the United States or the others to get engaged.

He thinks that although the West is limited because of the threat of nuclear proliferation – Iran doesn’t have many options because of the state of the economy and general mood of the country.

Zakaria: Let the supreme leader and President Ahmadinejad figure out what they should do first. Time might not be on their side.

And it appears neither are the people.

How many innocents have been murdered or tortured?

Does anyone know?

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