Friday, October 17, 2008

Iran: Thanking God for small favors

And best wishes to you as well, dear Ayatollah. Don't confuse this fellow with Muhammad Khatami, reformist former president of Iran.
Ayatollah Khatami in Iran Friday Sermon: U.S. Lust for Power To Blame For 'Economic Tsunami' ; Crisis Is Result of Moral Fiasco of Liberal Democracy; "Thank God Economic Crisis Hit The U.S. Itself"

Delivering the Friday sermon at the TehranUniversity campus, Ayatollah Ahmad Khatami focused on the global financial crisis, saying that the U.S.'s "lust for power" had set off an economic tsunami and calling the crisis the result of "liberal democracy." The sermon was covered by multiple Iranian news agencies, with IRIBnews headlining its report "Economic Crisis Result of Moral Fiasco of Liberal Democracy." In addition, Khatami said that the defeat of the U.S. is a moral defeat of liberal democracy, and advised Europe to distance itself from the U.S. He also discussed the upcoming 10th Iranian presidential elections.

The following are excerpts from his sermon. [1]

U.S. Power Lust Behind 'Economic Tsunami'; Crisis Marks Failure Of Liberal Democratic System

In his sermon, Ayatollah Ahmad Khatami said that Washington's lust for power was the main reason behind the "economic tsunami" in the U.S. economy. He added that the crisis, now hitting the globe, marks the failure of the liberal democratic system.

Khatami told worshipers, "Following the U.S. financial crisis, Europe and the U.S. allies too have been hit by an 'economic tsunami' and are shaken. Perhaps they had never experienced such a shock. Certain people used to name Americans' liberal democracy as their utopia at the end of the history of mankind, claiming that the U.S. is master of the said utopia; however, we are today witnessing defects in the utopia and its crushing failure."

He added, "The Bush administration's aggressive policies in Iraq and Afghanistan are the main cause of America's financial angst and distress."

Americans Themselves Say It's the Beginning of the End for U.S. Hegemony

"Americans have over the past eight years attacked anywhere on Earth they wished under the pretext of democracy, bringing nothing but death to the countries and poverty for their own people. Friends of (U.S. President George W.) Bush admit that the U.S. used to have a budget surplus eight years ago, but now it faces a budget deficit, as it has now spread to China too."

Khatami noted that the economic crisis is a big fiasco for the U.S. statesmen, as Bush's party colleagues announce their disavowal of him, and added that in their own analyses, the Americans are saying that they have come to the beginning of the end of American hegemony in the world.

Europe Should Distance Itself From The U.S.

Khatami said, "The Islamic Republic of Iran has time and again announced that Europe should distance [itself] from the U.S. because Europe practically collaborated with the U.S. and is now in the midst of crisis. Now, Arab states which used to link themselves with the U.S. are put in the trouble."

He said, "The U.S. had over recent months used all its efforts and the U.N. Security Council too, which served as a tool for the U.S. against Iran, issued a resolution against us so as to make us economically turbulent, but thank God, economic crisis hit the U.S. itself."

He continued, "They wished to fan economic crisis in Iran to raise public fury but Iranian people tolerated it with patience and officials too are kindly active in the field," he concluded.

Iranian Presidential Candidates Should Not Undermine Islamic Revolution's Values

Elsewhere in his sermon, Khatami urged hopefuls in Iran's 10th presidential elections not to run the race at the cost of undermining the Islamic Revolution's principles and values.

He said that the presidential elections candidates should avoid backbiting and bickering, distorting image of their rivals.

"Elections are in fact a kind of political celebration, especially in Iran, which had for long years been experiencing dictatorship and monarchical systems," Ayatollah Khatami said.

He said that the elections is an issue which cannot easily be overlooked by a Friday prayer leader either, and that free, legal, moral and popular elections are what the Islamic Republic establishment deserves, and that all should make efforts to guarantee its success.

[1] IRIBnews, IRNA, Press TV (Iran), October 17, 2008

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