Iranian parliament votes to cut Ahmadinejad’s term short

posted at 2:59 pm on December 3, 2006 by Allahpundit

I won’t even pretend to know what this is about. But it passed overwhelmingly and it looks like it’s going to be rubber-stamped by Rafsanjani, who heads the country’s constitutional committee and who happens to be the guy Ahmadinejad defeated in the last presidential election. If it’s ratified, it’ll push the end of his term up from August 2009 to February 2008, which could affect our own election depending upon who replaces him.

If you believe the opinion polls, he’s about as popular in Iran as Bush is here.

Are the Iranians ready to try a “new approach”? They have nothing to fear from us but a lot to fear from the Saudis; in fact, the Kingdom is so worried about Iran that they’re allegedly preparing for the unthinkable. Without the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to demagogue the mullahs will lose some momentum, so maybe throwing “Mahdi” under the bus is a conciliatory gesture aimed at cooling things off before something crazy happens and peace breaks out somewhere. It’s still good cop/bad cop; it’s just that the bad cop they’ve got now is starting to make everyone nervous. Even, perhaps, Russia.


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I question the timing.

JammieWearingFool on December 3, 2006 at 3:08 PM

I don’t know what to make of it either. Perhaps sanity is going to break out, but I wouldn’t bet on it.

Snake307 on December 3, 2006 at 3:10 PM

Gotta say, I did NOT see this coming. What’s up, really?

Someone smarter than me needs to figure this out. Too much ‘nuke Israel’ talk? Or is he too passive? All talk no gumballs?

shooter on December 3, 2006 at 3:11 PM

Next, a coup led by Uncle Ahmie?

Kokonut on December 3, 2006 at 3:13 PM

Its internal politics. Ahmadinejad while an islamicist isnt a Ayatollah so therefor they are uncomfortable having a non cleric in a position of power.

Gotta remember this is a theocracy over there. For the people of Iran the choice was between Ahmadinejad who while not a Ayatollah was certainly of the same mindset and Rafsenjani who was a Ayatollah.

The people simply didnt want the Ayatollahs in charge and Ahmadinejad was the only other alternative.

I think the clerics of Iran want full control again. They dont like someone who is an outsider even if he is an Islamic nutcase

William Amos on December 3, 2006 at 3:14 PM

Poor little guy. I hope he’s taking the news well.

JammieWearingFool on December 3, 2006 at 3:14 PM

This is huge news

Opinionnation on December 3, 2006 at 3:16 PM

another way to think of it was that the Ayatollahs but a complete but up against one of their breathern in the hopes the people of Iran would still back the Ayatollahs. The upshoot of it all is that the Iranian people would have elected SATAN over a Ayatollah. Or the next best thing.

William Amos on December 3, 2006 at 3:18 PM

Great news if true.

Good Lt on December 3, 2006 at 3:19 PM

Man, I wonder if he’ll get really p*ssed off and take a bunch of hostages again…don’t push him, he’s close to the..edge..he’s trying not to lose his head…it’s like a jungle som..sorry. Such a catchy song..:)

austinnelly on December 3, 2006 at 3:27 PM

It worries me he might try to speed up his plans

tomas on December 3, 2006 at 3:27 PM

The western press has ignored a large amount of domestic unrest in Iran. The Kurds are causing problems in the north and the Arabs are causing problems in the south. Even the college students are taking to the streets upset because the government has forced people to remove their sat antennas from their houses and has closed down much of the press. Many people there believe that Ahmadinejad is just another Russian “stooge” (a position that I happen to agree with). Even if the latter isn’t true Iran’s Islamofascist revolution hasn’t really been strongly supported by the people and with Saddam out of the way a great amount of nationalistic fear has evaporated. Ahmadinejad’s talk that he is the 12th Imam didn’t help him either.

Buzzy on December 3, 2006 at 3:35 PM

Perhaps the mullahs noticed that Ahamalamadingdong is batsh*t insane. But then, what would they have to compare him to?

Pablo on December 3, 2006 at 3:38 PM

I know things are bad in Iran but at least “I’m-a-dinner-jacket” gave the murderous, animalistic, dark-ages, type of Muslim the end of the world to look forward to. Now what have they got to do… but kill everyone who disagrees with them.

Mojave Mark on December 3, 2006 at 3:43 PM

Man, I wonder if he’ll get really p*ssed off and take a bunch of hostages again

That wasn’t him; it was someone who looks like him and nothing more.

Christoph on December 3, 2006 at 3:43 PM

Are the Iranians ready to try a “new approach”? They have nothing to fear from us but a lot to fear from the Saudis; in fact, the Kingdom is so worried about Iran that they’re allegedly preparing for the unthinkable.

My, but we do live in interesting times.

Pablo on December 3, 2006 at 3:45 PM

Christoph,

That wasn’t him; it was someone who looks like him and nothing more.

There are those who were there who say otherwise.

Pablo on December 3, 2006 at 3:46 PM

“If it’s ratified, it’ll push the end of his term up from August 2009 to February 2008,”

Which probably means that they would have liked to cut him loose right now… except that some little legality is in the way. The way that I would play this one is that Bush has finally started wearing him down by putting him in a situation where he “thinks” he needs to talk tough, but he just keeps coming off like a raving apocalyptic mongering fascist half-baked muslim version of Woody Allen playing Mussolini in a film directed by Sergio Leone. (The Short, the Stupid, and the Crazy).

As for the Russians… A pit bull in the yard is a great way to keep the neighbors at bay, right up until you see it growling at the kids. We will never know all of the back door petting and feeding that has been going on with those two, but I’ll bet that it’s been juicy indeed. And he may have nipped at the hand of the Ruskies or some such thing to have gained their distrust in this area. At least enough to soften their support along these “Nut With a Nuke in the Back Yard” lines.

RalphyBoy on December 3, 2006 at 3:48 PM

They couldn’t take the Member’s Only jacket anymore. That’s gotta be it.

jaleach on December 3, 2006 at 3:53 PM

I don’t know, it might be me, but the guy (Ahmadinejad) looks like an Iranian version of Fonzi. He reminds me of a mid eastern version of Henry Winkler. Sorry Fonz.

I too have no idea what to make of this.

voiceofreason on December 3, 2006 at 4:09 PM

What? No more President Ahmadummyjerk? Can it be he’s too radical even for the mad mullah’s? It just begs the question of who, or what, will replace him. The “devil you know” and all that. Really, he’s given the Iranian government a bad name (if that’s possible) in the world, and now they’re losing their international allies. I’m sure that has something to do with it. Sanctions could easily cause the population to rise up and overthrow the government. If his popularity polls can be believed, it’s probably been on their minds already.

thedecider on December 3, 2006 at 4:21 PM

Loved the high school yearbook photo of him on the main page.

Valiant on December 3, 2006 at 4:22 PM

THis kinda jibes with Ted Koppel’s Discovery Channel Report on Iran. While Ahmadinejad had the popular support of the illiterates, the educated classes seemed to consider him a buffoon. Granted anything produced in an authoritarian state is suspect, but the fact that these people critized him must be significant.

Iblis on December 3, 2006 at 4:40 PM

There is one problem with the idea that his opoularity and Bush’s are about the same.

Many of those who dissapprove of Bush here don’t think he is being assertive enough. I hope its the opposite over there.

Good Lt on December 3, 2006 at 4:46 PM

Beware of Iranians bearing gifts.

pocomoco on December 3, 2006 at 5:02 PM

Iraq will look tame in 2 years.

tomas on December 3, 2006 at 5:07 PM

Iran is in a precarious situation.

The West is blowing the lid off of their ideology, with Ahmadinejad’s help. While thier idelogy was kept internal and off of American airwaves it was not a big problem. Now it is scaring off investors and that is the last thing the mullahs need or want. Economic collapse and they can wave goodbye to their totalitarian state and hello to civil war.

Problems for the mullahs:

1)Many Iranians are not loyal to Iran, or Arabs. Israel is seem by many as an Arab problem. Persians don’t care as much. Kurds certainly care much less.

2) A factoid I picked up from Newsweek. Iran imports 5 billion in oil annually! And they are even below their OPEC quota. Before the Khomeni revolution Irans output was 6.1 million barrels, now it is down to 3.9 million barrels. Their infrastructure is crumbling and without outside investment a serious depression is just ticks off of the clock. That is the last thing the mullahs want.

3) The inverse relationship between jihad and wealth. Jihadis can not govern nor can they sustain their states. Jihad scares off customers and investment. The Suadis are the exception. (I’m hoping Glenn Beck does an expose of the Saudi influence in America and its mosques) They have been smart and stayed off of the radar and been very covert about spreading Wahhabism. For Iran that is now an impossibility.

4) Those same Saudis have threatened to boost output and cut the price of oil. That would cut the heart right out of the Iranian economy.

5) The Mexican factor. Once American oil companies get set up on Mexican oil reserves the price is going to drop anyway. What would Iran do if Saudi’s boosted output and a few years later Mexican oil exports chopped the price again? Iran could face a decades long depression.

I think it all adds up to “STFU Ahmadinejad!”, Iran simply cannot afford his rhetoric or regional ambitions.

Theworldisnotenough on December 3, 2006 at 5:08 PM

February 2008 is quite a ways off.

If there was any serious problem between Ahmadinejad and the ruling mullahs, I think they would do something sooner.

LegendHasIt on December 3, 2006 at 5:13 PM

2) A factoid I picked up from Newsweek. Iran imports 5 billion in oil annually! And they are even below their OPEC quota. Before the Khomeni revolution Irans output was 6.1 million barrels, now it is down to 3.9 million barrels. Their infrastructure is crumbling and without outside investment a serious depression is just ticks off of the clock. That is the last thing the mullahs want.

I think it all adds up to “STFU Ahmadinejad!”, Iran simply cannot afford his rhetoric or regional ambitions.

Theworldisnotenough on December 3, 2006 at 5:08 PM

Great points enough. Another factor is that iran doesn’t refine any of it’s own gasoline and has to import it. That is yet another choke point in their economy.

They need the nukes to make their little extortion scheme work. And you’re right about the disconnect between jihad and business investments.

Hey, if anybody sees Nonfactor, tell him/her there are responses and questions back on the mikey moore thread I’d appreciate being addressed. I’d also be interested to hear foggy’s take on those points; if you’re willing that is, foggy.

Thanks!

techno_barbarian on December 3, 2006 at 5:32 PM

If you ain’t making Mullah…the Mullahs will kick you to the dirt road.

tomas on December 3, 2006 at 5:41 PM

Man, I wonder if he’ll get really p*ssed off and take a bunch of hostages again…don’t push him, he’s close to the..edge..he’s trying not to lose his head…it’s like a jungle som..sorry. Such a catchy song..:)

austinnelly on December 3, 2006 at 3:27 PM

I expect more than that from him. He is a big boy. He might drop some nukes.

Ouabam on December 3, 2006 at 5:42 PM

February 2008 is quite a ways off.

If there was any serious problem between Ahmadinejad and the ruling mullahs, I think they would do something sooner.

LegendHasIt on December 3, 2006 at 5:13 PM

At least, he is leaving when president Bush is still in office. He had somebody–president Bush–who kept him in check through out the series of peaceful letters and speeches.

What would Chavez say about this?

Ouabam on December 3, 2006 at 5:51 PM

The clerics control huge sections of the Iranian economy, and must make billions off of it. I wonder if Ahmad is threatening the gravy train with his foreign adventurism.

Clark1 on December 3, 2006 at 6:03 PM

Did you guys and gals see the Time magazines spot on al-cnn where they’re seriously considering ol’ chavez as Time’s person of the year?!

I saw that and just shook my head in disgust. Utterly clueless to even suggest it, much less make a puff video promo for it.

The folks at Time really have their priorieties screwed up. A tin pot dictator for person of the year. Unbelievable.

techno_barbarian on December 3, 2006 at 6:32 PM

Iran Daily is reporting that the bill extends parliamentarian terms rather than cutting short the Presidential term.

“Simultaneous Election Bill” -> http://www.iran-daily.com/1385/2724/html/national.htm#s192918

Since Iran Daily is written in English, you must also recognize who is the target audience.

Anyone on HotAir able to tranlate Iranian local newspapers?

rockhauler on December 3, 2006 at 6:33 PM

The folks at Time really have their priorieties screwed up.

Dog bites man.

Christoph on December 3, 2006 at 6:40 PM

Is it real or smoke and mirrors? “Don’t mind me, I won’t be here for that long.” Talk about a stall tactic.

- The Cat

MirCat on December 3, 2006 at 7:06 PM

If this is true then it’s one huge turn of events that could prevent another conflict … or hasten one. Let’s all pray that this leads to an uprising of Iranians who want freedom, and that they overthrow the mullahs in a bloodless revolt.

Tony737 on December 3, 2006 at 7:32 PM

Oh and by the way, Chavez is way ahead in the “polls”.

Tony737 on December 3, 2006 at 7:46 PM

Oh and by the way, Chavez is way ahead in the “polls”.

Tony737 on December 3, 2006 at 7:46 PM

Yep. And he’s running on the platform “A vote for me is a vote for the destruction of the United States of America, the most violent and corrupt nation on the face of the earth, run by satan himself.”

/gag

techno_barbarian on December 3, 2006 at 8:13 PM

If this is true, it could totally change world politics. This man is a thorn in everyone’s bum. The MSM will be totally heartbroken over it though, with him being their posterchild for so called peace. Now if we could get Venezuela to come to its senses.

Vanquisher on December 3, 2006 at 8:13 PM

I agree with MirCar. I think that if he was a big a problem as is being assumed, he wouldn’t have two years grace.

Krydor on December 3, 2006 at 8:51 PM

Whatever this means, it can’t be good. Why quit while you’re ahead??? Something stinks.

Zorro on December 3, 2006 at 8:55 PM

Maybe the mullahs are trying to look ‘reasonable’ and worth negotiating with?

Hudna with a side of taqyia, anyone?

techno_barbarian on December 3, 2006 at 10:21 PM

I’m-a-damn-nutjob gives speeches to the Partei faithful that wold make Hitler proud. When J. Random Imam does that, it can be ignored. When the President does it, it can’t. The mullahs need to keep that stuff under wraps, not give Glenn Beck material for a (CNNHN!) special.

They need to have a President Elect in the bully pulpit before W leaves office, or something truly scary could happen – HillBama might be forced to Do Something™ about him. The mullahs must know that the MSM only allows Democrat presidents to take military action.

The Monster on December 3, 2006 at 10:49 PM

Man, I am SO glad that Beck is doing all those specials, and that they’ve been getting the huge ratings they’ve been getting. FINALLY! Somebody exposing this stuff to the masses. And it’s gotta be a rodeo cowboy with the guts of Churchill doing it, instead of some enterprising journalist with some actual integrity and a desire to tell a really fascinating and true story that needs telling. Where the hell are all the REAL journalists and reporters?

Beck is the only thing I’ll watch on al-cnn.

techno_barbarian on December 3, 2006 at 11:14 PM

Oh and by the way, Chavez is way ahead in the “polls”.

Tony737 on December 3, 2006 at 7:46 PM

So was Hitler at the end of the Austria Anschluss voting day (there might have been 3 counts against it). And, not to forget that Saddam Hussein had 100% vote for him too. So would Fidel Castro, or Raul, if they’d commence voting.

Entelechy on December 4, 2006 at 1:29 AM

Oh, how could that little pimple get cut any shorter?

seejanemom on December 4, 2006 at 10:41 AM

The funny thing is…

The Iranians are suddenly afraid of their president getting into a war, except that for the last 30+ years Iran’s leaders have been calling for exactly that.

Sounds like the Iranians are chickening out a bit. Maybe Bush and the current Administration know what they are doing?

We also need to keep in mind that the average Iranian citizen (a significant number who view themselves as Persions, not Muslim Arabs) have no desire to fight a war for Islam right now.

Lawrence on December 4, 2006 at 12:14 PM

Admittedly, I have never taken the time to read Iran’s constitution, but this post made me curious. It’s amazing how much of it reads like a very democratic document on the surface (especially if you forget about the “Supreme Leader” parts…), such as:

From Article 19:
All people of Iran, whatever the ethnic group or tribe to which they belong, enjoy equal rights; and color, race, language, and the like, do not bestow any privilege.
From Article 20:
All citizens of the country, both men and women, equally enjoy the protection of the law and enjoy all human, political, economic, social, and cultural rights, in conformity with Islamic criteria.

(It’s that last caveat that’s the “gotcha.”) Interesting too that the President has almost no real powers (aside from establishing the budget and paying the bills.) Anyway, from the text:

From Article 110:
10.Dismissal of the’ President of the Republic, with due regard for the interests of the country, after the Supreme Court holds him guilty of the violation of his constitutional duties, or after a vote of the Islamic Consultative Assembly testifying to his incompetence on the basis of Article 89 of the Constitution.

From Article 89:
2. … In the event, after hearing the statements of the opposing and favoring members and the reply of the President, two-thirds of the members of the Assembly declare a vote of no confidence, the same will be communicated to the Leadership for information and implementation of Section (10) of Article 110 of the Constitution

So, I guess that the 80% of the Assembly that voted to cut his term short feels that Ahmadamnnutjob is “incompetent.” Or, as Pablo said:

batsh*t insane.

Still doesn’t explain why they just didn’t boot him out now though.

lan astaslem on December 4, 2006 at 2:18 PM

So, you mean all Muslims aren’t terrorist, scum-sucking, “kill the infidels at costs” nutcases?

No shit.

honora on December 4, 2006 at 3:53 PM

So, I guess that the 80% of the Assembly that voted to cut his term short feels that Ahmadamnnutjob is “incompetent.”

lan astaslem on December 4, 2006 at 2:18 PM

Incompentent in what, though. Are they upset because he hasn’t done enough to get a real smack-down thermo-nuclear war started?

Lawrence on December 4, 2006 at 4:26 PM