Personal and academic blog. Explores the borderlands between rhetoric, politics and intelligence.


Ahmedinejad II: The Doomsday Scenario

The Shiite branch of Islam is a fascinating, catholic religion - brilliantly and insightfully described in Roy P. Mottahedeh's "Mantle of the Prophet", which is part fiction, part facts (Oversat i en fremragende udgave til dansk "Profetens Kappe. Lærdom og Magt i Iran." (København, Forlaget Vandkunsten, 2005 - tak Laura).

It features a messianic figure, the 12th Imam, who disappeared around the turn of the last millenium, but is said to return and bring an era of righteousness.

This week in the danish weekly Weekendavisen, it is speculated that the Iranian president Ahmedinejad is supporter of an escatological cult of revellers of the 12th Imam and that he foresees the return of the Imam in 2007, during his own presidency.

This is not exactly an element that fits well with the more rhetorical/realist analysis that I have launched on this page, but it is an interesting (however paranoid and scary) thought. When you think about it, when have those escatological cults ever had any political influence for real?

Another observation of the article by Rasmus Christian Elling, however, is that Ahmedinejad belongs to the generation of Iranians who fought Iraq in the 1980s and that this generation, militarized and tired of the appeasement towards the west of prior governments, now are getting into control.


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