Recently a biased and blinkered ideologue sent me a link to a New Duranty Times puff piece on Mahmoud Ahmadinejad that I discussed here: “What a sweet guy. Hostage taker? Naaah, he couldn’t have been. Look: he gave poor people discounted meat. This kind of story reminds me of puff pieces about Hitler published in the 1930s: the FÃ¼hrer with his beloved dogs, admiring comments about his personal warmth from his inner circle, etc. Only I don’t think even the New Duranty Times stooped that low in those days.” (You can also find there an explanation of why the New York Times richly deserves to be called the “New Duranty Times.”)
This same emailer falsely declared that Jihad Watch had not reported on U.S. official statements that Ahmadinejad was not one of the 1979 embassy hostage takers (we did here) and made this astounding statement in response to another story giving evidence of Iranian bellicosity: “How many centuries do you have to go back to find when the Persians invaded another nation?” Well! They’ve been peaceful for centuries! They must be peaceful now!
This is the level of “analysis” that unfortunately prevails among large segments of the American Left today. As Bush declines to rule out the use of force against Iran, which is a topic calling for careful, reasoned discussion, his words in some quarters are just a signal to start characterizing Iran as benign, inoffensive, and its thug President even cuddly.
Meanwhile, back in Iran, however, the evidence continues to mount of how far this view is divorced from reality. From AP, with thanks to the Constantinopolitan Irredentist:
TEHRAN, Iran – Iran’s new president nominated a Cabinet on Sunday that has hard-liners in all key ministries and is likely to lead to more confrontation in the country’s dispute with the Washington and Europe over its nuclear program.
Not one of the 21 ministers that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad nominated is known to be pro-democratic reform in Iran. The nominees, who have to be approved by parliament, are widely seen as followers of Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, a noted conservative who has the final say on all state matters.
The proposed foreign minister is Manouchehr Mottaki, a conservative lawmaker who has criticized Iran’s nuclear negotiations with the Europeans, saying the country should adopt a tougher position and make no concessions.
Several other proposed ministers are either members of the Revolutionary Guards, or have a history of cooperating with the Guards and security agencies, which take hard-line positions on Iran’s nuclear program.