I keep returning to Reza Aslan here because he is an excellent example of a deceptive Islamic supremacist who is widely taken as a “moderate.” He is therefore a perfect illustration of how such Islamic supremacists bamboozle the ignorant and unwitting.
The adolescent literary pretender Aslan continues to race around the country promoting his new literary anthology and trying to claim a spurious victim status for Muslims by whining about “Islamophobia,” but his moderate pose wears increasingly thin. He has called on the U.S. Government to negotiate not only with Ahmadinejad but with Hamas — that is, with some of the most barbaric and genocidally-inclined adherents of Sharia. He has even praised the jihad terror group Hizballah as “the most dynamic political and social organization in Lebanon” — recalling the useful idiots and fellow travelers who used to praise Stalinist Russia and even Hitler’s Germany for their social services apparatuses.
Also, he is a Board member of the National Iranian American Council, a group that genuine Iranian pro-democracy forces regard as an apologetic vehicle for the Islamic Republic of Iran. And so not surprisingly, in this piece about the trouble Iran’s Thug-In-Chief, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, is facing at home, he offers not one critical word about Ahmadinejad’s genocidal antisemitism, or the regime’s persecution of non-Muslims. Instead, he praises certain domestic policies of Ahmadinejad.
Yes, and Hitler built the autobahn.
The irony is that Ahmadinejad is unquestionably doing the sensible thing in pushing ahead with the removal of government subsidies. Subsidies account for approximately 30 percent of Iran’s entire annual budget. That is simply untenable for an economy that just last month saw the value of its currency drop by a staggering 13 percent against the dollar. Iran’s oil industry, its most lucrative source of revenue, is in shambles after the recent departure of four oil companies– Shell, Total, ENI, and Statoil. The carpet industry, once valued at $500 million, has disintegrated thanks to increased sanctions. The government claims that 22 percent of Iranians are unemployed (experts say the number is closer to 40 percent), three-quarters of them under the age of 30. Some 40 percent of Iranians live below the poverty line. Inflation is officially at 10 percent, though many economists believe it to be more like 24 percent. With the price of oil remaining stable and Iran’s international isolation increasing, the government simply cannot afford to keep paying out nearly a third of its entire budget in subsidies.
But while what Ahmadinejad is doing may be the right thing for the country, it is the way he is doing it–by virtual fiat–that has parliament up in arms. In order to alleviate some of the economic hardships that Iranians will no doubt face, Ahmadinejad is personally doling out millions of dollars to families in need. According to the Iranian newspaper Payvand, some 60 million people (out of a population of 75 million) will receive about $40 a month to offset the inevitable rise in prices.