Iran : Khamenei’s death, a rumour that lacks of imagination
Since last Tuesday evening, a rumour goes around on the net : websites of Iranian opponents state that the Supreme Guide Ali Khamenei would have died after a 24 hours coma. Those websites would have gathered this information in the corridors of Tehran Bazar and Bazaris would have heard it anywhere. We didn’t publish this rumour because we already published it in 2007 !
On the 4 January 2007, a rumour went around into every Iranian media and it announced “the death of the Supreme Guide at the beginning of the afternoon which would have explained the massive presence of militiamen on crossroads and on roads that lead to the capital’s sensitive areas”, a presence that was “reported by eyewitnesses”. From this date, we questioned the concerned media about their role into promotion of fake opponents. That’s why we appeared more reserved concerning the new version of this rumour which is exactly the same because it deals with a death that happened the day before further to a coma and we announce it on the strength of witness account of massive presence of militiamen on crossroads.
The rumour that was spread yesterday is similar to 2007 one because it comes from the same source : not from “opponent’s websites” but from a man who rules the roost in Washington into the circles of opponents to mullahs. The person in question is Michael Ledeen, a widely known member of the American Enterprise Institute, a think tank that was in charge of importing democracy in Iraq and that also got down to coordinate efforts about Iran. In the case of this country, it was not a matter of playing it like Lafayette but of financing actions that would be fit for intimidating mullahs in order to encourage those Arab street’s inspirers to accept an agreement with America, an agreement that is vital for its strategic interests.
It’s within this much devious framework that in 2007 Ledeen had the idea to spread the rumour of the Guide’s death. He suggested the mullahs to take out of circulation this leader who is known to be immoderate and replace him with another who would have a good reputation in order to make this agreement between mullahs and United States politically correct. This wish was expressed at a time when the United States were threatening Tehran with a second resolution they didn’t really want. However they feared that this would perpetuate sanctions and contribute to making fail its future useful allies.
Nowadays while the United States finds itself back in the same situation, i.e. the day before sanctions they fear of adopting, they expressed automatically the same white wish !
However there’s still a slight problem because in summer, the regime itself planned to change its Guide during the course of Green Revolution. This was supposed to give the regime and its institutions a new lease of life. At the same time, the regime also hoped for simulating an internal crisis to block every negotiation with Westerners. This manoeuvre fell through because American didn’t back such manipulation. The automatic resumption of this rumour shows Washington’s lack of imagination. Washington has run out of ideas to make its project of agreement with mullahs true.