Why the Iranians Wanted Ahmadinejad 

Wednesday 6 July 2005, by Reem AL-FAISAL, Arab News

Iran voted and for the second time in recent history its choice has shaken the world. Iran has chosen a man from the people and for the people. Ahmadinejad is a strange creature, an honest man dreaming of a just world surrounded by cynics. Will he be able to survive all the powers his coming has awakened within and without of Iran?

Iran, Venezuela, India and many other nations are symbols of a world revolt of what Frantz Fanon called “the wretched of the earth”. For too long the poor, the downtrodden have been repressed, silenced, ignored and when they tried to object, to raise their voice, they were silenced even harder by a world elite which is bent on achieving its objectives by any means possible.

However, the vote of the Iranians is the latest and surely not the last of a world movement which spans all cultures and religions and unites different ideologies in one goal and that is the end of a savage materialistic system which unhinged the world and brought misery and pain to every patch of land on this earth. We see a culture of rapacious opportunism by a small elite of different creeds and races but united in one objective - the satisfaction of their own needs and desires over everyone else - and in the process of achieving these goals they disregard the greater good and the well-being of the earth and the billions of human beings who inhabit it.

For too long the material desires of the few have superseded the needs of the many and still do but, now there is a slight difference - a whiff of revolution in the air - and it is happening everywhere and in every continent. Even in Europe the silent majority will no longer play the game and hold their tongue as shown by France’s refusal to ratify the European Union’s constitution.

When the people of Iran voted by a landslide an unknown into the office of president they declared to all that they will not stay silent in the corner accepting poverty and injustice so that women of Northern Tehran can wear their fashionable hijab over their peroxided hair and young men can strut around in metro fashion with their girlfriends. No, sorry, but the people of Iran opted for a man who cares about social justice and not social gatherings, a man who wants to give the youth of Iran a better life with dignity and opportunities and not the freedom to wear the latest jeans.

The time has come for the elites of every nation to leave their ivory towers and go out in the streets of their country and listen, really listen, to what their people are saying, what are their hopes, expectations and needs and stop imposing on them a fantasy world which the people will no longer accept. If they don’t do that then they are in for more surprises and much more instability and violence in the world. How can they expect these people to go on accepting injustice and cruelty in the world? How can they expect them to accept a world where every day 35,000 women and children die as a result of poverty, where a few hundred rich men hold the amount of wealth equal to a few billion human beings? How can they expect that humanity will go on quietly accepting living in misery and desperation when there is enough wealth and resources to feed and enrich far more people than the earth contains at present?

The obscenity of the world order of today can no longer be accepted and can’t continue to exist for the simple reason that the “Wretched of the Earth” today outnumber everyone else and it is now in there to outvote, outvoice and outrun everyone else. So beware of the massing voices which you hear way down there at the gates of your ivory towers; they are getting louder and they won’t go away.


Reem Al-Faisal is a Saudi photographer and writer. She is based in Jeddah.

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