Sunday, May 14, 2006

Janati: Criticized for saying Ahmadinejadt’s Letter was Inspired by God

Hamid Ahadi, Rooz Online:
Following the negative response of US officials to Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s letter to his US counterpart - which was interpreted as insulting by the Iranian media - the secretary of Iran’s powerful Guardians Council said at the last Friday congregational prayers in Tehran that the president’s letter to president George Bush has been inspired by God and compared the letter to the one that the late ayatollah Khomeini had sent to Gorbachev, in which he invited the Soviet leader to Islam.

In response to these remarks, the Jomhuri Eslami newspaper, which normally reflects the views of Qom Theological Center Teachers Association (Jame-e Modaresin Hoze Elmie Qom), counseled the cleric to balance his remarks and curtain his praise for the Ahmadinejad’s gesture and not refrain from fair criticism.

At the same time, president Ahmadinejad said that the letter was sent to the US president in the spirit of historic Islamic practice when others were invited to peace and teachings of prophets and saints. He made these remarks while he was in Bali, Indonesia attending the D-8 meeting last week. And without directly mentioning the US president, Ahmadinejad said the reason why the “powers” were angry at the letter was because of their arrogance but reiterated that we shall not talk to them when their “armed planes are in our skies over our heads.”

Meanwhile, Saeed Hadadian, a known prayer leader and religious hymn singer who shows up at Passdaran Revolutionary Guards Corps and Baseej meetings and criticizes pre-Ahmadinejad administrations in Iran, also called Ahmadinejad’s letter to George Bush a “sign of the coming of the twelfth Imam, in a televised live program.

And finally, conservative Keyhan newspaper which tows the government line, wrote that Americans were “shocked” by the letter that Ahmadinejad had written to his US counterpart but claimed that “90 percent of people of America” agreed with the words of Ahmadinejad’s letter.