U.S. Walks Out on President Ahmadinejad, Rightfully So
By Judy Yoo '14
In New York on Sept. 19, in an interview with the Associated Press Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said, “The future belongs to Iran.” He challenged the United States and told the world that Iran has a major role in the world, and that it is time that we all accept it.

Despite this confident approach to diplomacy, President Ahmadinejad did not forget to reveal several points of peacemaking his government desired. He insisted that his government does not want an atomic bomb and that Iran is seeking a nuclear-free world. He expressed his relief at the release of American hiker Sarah Shourd from prison in Tehran and was honest in stating his belief in the suspicion of FBI employee Robert Levinson in 2007. President Ahmadinejad’s calm disposition throughout his visit made peacemaking seem possible and imminent.

Then came the speech.

President Ahmadinejad’s speech on the demise of capitalism accounted for more than just an attack on capitalism. He declared that the U.S. was responsible for orchestrating the 9/11 attack as a way to reverse the falling U.S. economy and take control of the Middle East. Ahmadinejad did not fail to point out that, indeed, a majority of Americans and nations agree with this radical view. Again confident of his ideas, Ahmadinejad went so far as to propose the U.N. carry out a formal investigation of the matter.

The accusations did not end there. Following the far-reaching remark about the 9/11 attack, Ahmadinejad accused the U.S. of using 9/11 as an excuse to start bullying Iran about their nonexistent nuclear weapons. Ironically, his series of criticisms were concluded by, again, promises on cooperation. He stated Tehran would be ready for talks on the nuclear program. and holding the Bible and Quran in his hands, indicated its equality. In response, 33 UN leaders, including the US representative, walked out.

Disrespectful? I disagree. President Ahmadinejad’s address to the world leaders on Sept. 23 was one of the most daring acts of “diplomacy” done by the Iranian government. Of course, most people of the government, if not all, disagree with his claims. Farzad Farhangian, who spent 23 years in the Iranian diplomatic service, has a different idea of what is about to collapse. It certainly isn’t capitalism. It just may be the chance for diplomacy. And according to the U.N., this isn’t the first time President Ahmadinejad has resorted to such childish accusations — accusations which have no basis in fact, but only basis in conspiracy theories fostered by popular culture. As reported by The New York Times, Britain’s deputy prime minister, Nick Clegg, planned to tell the General Assembly on Sept. 24 of his plans to welcome progress on renew talks concenring Iran’s nuclear program. But the floral speech given by the president has erased public concern over what is truly important.

Many have set out to analyze President Ahmadinejad’s reasons for forecfully proclaming such attacks. It was noted that, by blaming U.S. for the terrorist attacks, Ahmadinejad may have been able to improve the image of Iran. Whatever the reason may be, his actions at the U.N. were inexcusable. Both sides of the party, the U.S. and Iran, have acted in ways that led to misunderstandings and insults. However, with peace talks so imminent, President Ahmadinejad should not have declared such conspiracy theories in a formal and prominent meeting. He degraded the seriousness of peace talks on both sides and wasted the time of the nations who took the time to be there. He distracted the public from being concerned about the importance of lives being lost by focusing on himself. He showed the hypocrisy of his actions as he deemed the holy books to be equal, but his actions not so.

Who knows? Maybe all the conspiracy theories are true. Heck, we should even throw in the idea that President Bush was completely responsible for Sept. 11. But this is certainly not the time to play the blame game or delve into something that happened almost a decade ago. We need to hammer out a solution and stop poking fun at the sensitive wounds of our past.

Issue 04, Submitted 2010-09-28 23:46:46