Head of Trend News Persian Desk, Dalga Khatinoglu
Agitation campaign during the presidential elections in Iran and live broadcasting of debates between candidates on public televisions have caused excitement and agiotage amongst the people. These debates are an innovation for the people. After hot debates between the presidential candidates, former Prime Minister Mir Hussein Mousavi and Ahmadinejad, the people spent the whole night on the streets and squares, exchanged views to support their candidates.
Prior to the presidential election in the United States 49 years ago, the whole world watched the debates of presidential candidates Richard Nixon and John Kennedy, with interest. I think that also there are interesting points in the debates of presidential candidates in Iran. Especially the populist statements, disclosures and ambitious ideas of the emotional President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad draw attention.
During debates with Musavi, Ahmadinejad's sharp accusations of corruption, lawlessness, dictatorship and other crimes against former President Ali Akbar Rafsanjani and several high-ranking officials, as well as description of achievements in the field of nuclear program during his presidency show that Ahmadinejad tried to change the situation in its favor. Furthermore, the current President of Iran demonstrated that he was not interested in 25 percent inflation in the country, Iran's isolation from the international community, the fate of "disappeared" 330 million dollars, and that the Supreme Accounting Chamber accuses the government of this, as well as the restriction of freedom of speech in the country to a minimum.
During the debates, Musavi criticized Ahmadinejad, calling him "a liar, superstitious, lawlessness and visionary." In reply, the Iranian President said that the doctoral degree Musavi's wife is false and accused those who support Musavi of corruption.
The most interesting was that Ahmadinejad accused former presidents of Iran of subordination and concessions to the West, but described his term of presidency as the period of achieving successes in the nuclear program. In fact, with such a method of "fighting", Ahmadinejad is trying to avoid issues relating to economic and domestic problems in the country. Although Musavi cursorily touched upon the above-mentioned problems, detailed discussions did not take place on this topic.
Serious and humble image of Musavi, along with the ironic smile and expose of Ahmadinejad, reminded Nixon and Kennedy debates in 1960. Then the young Kennedy also carefully and seriously listened to derisive remarks of Nixon, who had eight years experience at the White House, and tried to answer him logically.
Radical and nerve statement by Ahmadinejad has caused the appearance of "an atmosphere of exposure" in all the camps of presidential candidates. Former Secretary of Supreme Security Council and former head of the delegation holding discussions with the West over Iran's nuclear program, Hassan Rukhani called Ahmadinejad's remarks regarding the nuclear program "silly and false."
Rukhani accused the president of Iran of "polluting" pre-election atmosphere and openly called him "a fool and a liar." Hassan Rukhani demanded Ahmadinejad to clarify the fate of 330 million dollars that came from oil and non-oil sector.
Nevertheless, economic problems and isolation of Iran from the international community, which are the "Achilles heel" of Ahmadinejad, were a key advantage of other participants in the presidential race. If the process will continue in the same direction, it will certainly affect the results of presidential elections in Iran.
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