Leaders of Iran

Friday, December 10, 2004

Hoder on Ali Larijani

E:M | Making of the next President: Ali Larijani's diary: "Making of the next President: Ali Larijani's diary
I guess the Iran presidential election would eventually come down to a dirty fight between Akbar Rafsanjani, former president and Ali Larijani, former head of Iranian radio and TV (IRIB).

But Ali Larijani, very close advisor to the Supreme Leader, is not very well-known in the West, despite his crucial position among the young conservative politicians. He is known to be one of their greatest strategists who has been leading the gradual but very effective crackdown on the entire reform movement. He has a PhD in philosophy and before running the TV and radio for the past ten years, he's been a top official in Revolutionary Guards of Iran.

In a clear sign of his ambitions for the upcoming election, he has started a daily column based on his diary, in Jaam-e Jam, the most popular newspaper which is run by IRIB and is founded by Larijani himself during the second half of his term,. (A close friend of his, Ezzat Zarghami now runs the IRIB, while Larijani has no position in the administration, probably to prepare for his campaign).

Reading the first parts of the diary, witch talks about the process of him being appointed by Khamanei as the head of IRIB, it strikes me as nothing but an official start of campaigning. His strong emphasis on his personal relationship with the Supreme Leader, his great respect for his wife and family, and his skills and interests as a university professor who teaches Philosophy of Science in Tehran University. (He even mentions the English names of the articles he is reading to prepare himself for the next lecture. )

It's a lot of fun reading it because of his particular stiff and cold language, even when he writes about emotional things, and it's also very revealing about some behind-the-scenes incidents.

To me it looks like a blog, written -- possibly -- ten years ago, and published now, with a personal point-of-view and interesting details about the life of one of the brightest stars of the conservative camp who I guess is the ultimate hope of the Supreme Leader to lead the country for the next eight years.

Strange that no one has picked it up yet in the press."

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