Magazine article Newsweek

Iran Turns against Its President

Magazine article Newsweek

Iran Turns against Its President

Article excerpt

Byline: Maziar Bahari

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad--Holocaust denier, nuclear aspirant and the West's favorite bugbear--may soon become the ex-president of Iran. According to recent government-funded polls seen by NEWSWEEK, some 16 million to 18 million Iranians say they plan to vote for his main rival, Mir Hossein Mousavi, on June 12--compared with just 6 million to 8 million for Ahmadinejad. If the polls prove correct, that will sweep Mousavi to victory in the first round of voting. This is a tidal shift from just four weeks ago, when public polls showed Ahmadinejad ahead by 50 percent, and the turnaround has shocked the country's political elite.

Perhaps they shouldn't be so surprised. Ahmadinejad's recent antics have dismayed Iranians from all walks of life. His government has responded to the global recession by hiking salaries for state employees and doling out cash to those who attend his speeches, fueling inflation and creating resentment. Meanwhile, the political theatrics that made Ahmadinejad a household name worldwide now seem to be working against him. Many of Mousavi's supporters are first-time voters who have avoided politics till now--but plan to show up on June 12 to vote against Ahmadinejad, whom they've come to regard as reckless and endangering their country's international standing.

Even Iran's Revolutionary Guards and members of the country's vast intelligence apparatus seem to have come around to this position: a large majority of them also plan to vote for Mousavi, according to the government poll. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.