Prominent Iranian intellectuals to Lebanese people: “Let Ahmadinejad not fool you”

13 Oct 2010

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Today, the Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad arrives in Lebanon for a state visit to the country, the first of its kind since he took office in 2005. The main aim of his visit is “to strengthen the Lebanese national unity”, Iran’s ambassador to Lebanon has said last week. But in an open letter to the Lebanese people, prominent Iranian intellectuals warn the Lebanese people for Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s lies and misleading policies, and ask them to not see this man as a representative of the Iranian people. They call him “but a populist showman whose game must not fool us.”

The letter, which is first published on TehranReview today, says that “Khatamis and Mousavis are the true representatives of the Iranian people.” A list of important Iranian writers, intellectuals and journalists warns for the policies of Ahmadinejad, which they consider more dangerous than ever, referring to the frauded presidential elections in June 2009 and “the bloodsheds that followed the rigged elections, with his ever more radical and controversial policies.” Specifically addressing the people of Lebanon, the signatories refer to Iran’s support for Hezbollah, condemning this support of one particular group as opposed to other political groups, which “would both lead to further tension in Lebanon.”

Among the signatories are Shahrnush Parsipour (Iranian-American writer), Hamid Dabashi (professor at Columbia University), Azadeh Kian (sociologist), Mohsen Makhmalbaf (film director), Mehdi Jami (journalist), Nayereh Touhidi (academic) and Ramin Jahanbegloo (professor of political science).

During his visit to Lebanon, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is expected to meet with Lebanese President Michel Sleiman, Prime Minister Saad Hariri, Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri as well as leaders of the Hezbollah resistance movement.

Tehran Review
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