Oh my gosh! Apparently Iran is not a monolithic monster whose entire energies are united in destroy all that’s good and holy and can be sold at Wal-Mart.
It looks like there are serious and deepening divisions in the ruling elite there, with the Ayatollah Khamenei slowly tightening the noose around the neck of President Ahmadinejad. How confusing this all is! For one thing, whom are we supposed to demonize in the usual cartoonish rendering of reality favored by our own noble leaders and our leading organs of information, where there must be, always, everywhere, “good guys” and “bad guys” to help or hinder?
Ahmadinejad has been one of the more durable “new Hitlers” of our era, always good for a scary headline or a boost in military spending or a reason for continuing the war crime in Iraq. But now he is being attacked by the Ayatollah, the black-robed center of Islamic extremism and “state-sponsored terrorism” in the popular – and political – mind. (It’s likely that a great many people think Khamenei is the same Ayatollah who served as the all-powerful bin-Ladenish bogeyman of American nightmares after the Iranian hostage crisis.) How can we support an Islamic bogeyman against a secular leader? But if that leader is the new Hitler, then how can we … ???