Iran Feature: Rafsanjani Makes His Political Move….By Attacking Ahmadinejad For Corruption and Economic Problems


Former Presidents Hashemi Rafsanjani and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

Former President Hashemi Rafsanjani, building his campaign for increased influence within the regime, has found a culprit for Iran’s economic problems — former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Rafsanjani was in the political wilderness after he defended the right of Iranians to protest the disputed 2009 Presidential election. However, he has rebuilt his position as his protégé, Hassan Rouhani, claimed the Presidency in 2013.

Next month, Rafsanjani is expected to stand for leader of the Assembly of Experts, a position he lost in 2011. Hardliners — some of them close to Ahmadinejad — are trying to block him. They have even claimed that he has been involved in the “sedition” threatening the Islamic Republic since 2009, but are struggling to find a candidate to check the former President’s ambitions.

On Wednesday, Rafsanjani’s website posted portions of his October 2014 address to the Assembly that had been withheld from public view:

Hashemi [Rafsanjani] pointed at “an ocean of destruction, corruption, and theft” during the tenure of the previous government…..

He said: “Right here, I told the gentlemen, why do you approve of all the work of this government? How are you going to answer people and God tomorrow?

Then, I told my deputy at the [Assembly of] Experts…you are saying this or that person led [Ahmadinejad’s] deviation. But [Ahmadinejad] is deviation personified. If you were wrong, honestly tell the people you were wrong and don’t try to hide behind the back of someone else and claim the deviation was his work. People don’t believe such things.

Acknowledging the scale of Iran’s economic difficulties, Rafsanjani claimed that the Rouhani Government is “facing an ocean of destruction with an empty treasury and the full cannons of an extremist minority, which possessed all the opportunities in the elections but lost”.

Meanwhile, the former President’s camp maintained the official line that the former President has yet to decide if he will stand for chair of the Assembly of Experts. Rafsanjani’s brother Mohammad Hashemi, the head of his office, said, “[He has] neither declared that he will participate in the elections for Assembly of Experts, nor does he deny it.”

The 86-member Assembly of Experts is responsible for choosing the Supreme Leader and, nominally, can replace him. Rafsanjani said earlier that he would like a council to replace the Supreme Leader after the death of Ayatollah Khamenei.

Rafsanjani is also head of the Expediency Council, which rules on disputes between the branches of government.

(h/t Iran Press Review for translation)

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  1. Hashemi Rafsanjani, who heads the Iranian business mafia, and who is Iran’s richest individual, is no position to criticize anyone else for corruption.

    • True – But even he can see the writing is on the wall for the Regime. Either the Regime faces up to a Big scale kind of Glasnost that allows more freedoms and liberty for the people, or you can finally say goodbye to your Mullah Militia and it’s years of hypocrisy, criminal corruption and terrorist state oppression. Ever since 2009, Iranian’s have been a tinder box towards an exploding volcano. A totally broke economy under Khamenei’s Islamic Gestapo, will ultimately be the spark to set it off!

  2. He doesn’t head IRGC, so he can’t be the head of mafia in the islamic republic.

    Not defending rafsanjani but he always was wealthy, unlike that grand thief, khamenei. Who, used to recite prayers for the dead for 2-3 tomans(~50 cents) off back of his motorcycle….

  3. Interesting how the first offense when people who are regime supporters do when they hear Rafsanjani and his name to label him as a corrupt and wealthy mullah.

    Well Rafsanjani was from a wealthy family near Kerman before the revolution. They were in the Pistachio business (Growing and selling of it) not billionaire, but not poor by any figment of imagination either. Also the Hashemi brothers were all well educated and hence worldly even by the standards of 40 to 50 years ago. Rafsanjani during his reign had a lot of corruption and a big clan in charge of much of the industry but also the Rafsanjani clan was smart to put technocrats in positions of authority and second in charge. Further their pragmatic approach allowed professional managers and industrialists / engineers to run the show while they siphoned off some of the profits amongst the clan.
    The Khamanei gang is far less sophisticated and crude and far more like a Mafia. The clan is the hardline supporters. What matters is loyalty to the supreme leader under the guise of Velayate Faqih, and the muscle is IRGC. Instead of educated technocrats and managers, they have a bunch of bullies in universities stamping degrees for all the clan (Like Mr. Ahamadinejads PHD). Instead of leaving people of know to run businesses and siphoning off profits they are taking over businesses and then just wholesale running them to the ground. Instead of having their clan of hundreds in charge, they have an army of Basiji who are close to 500000 who are being fed. Yes there was corruption in times of Rafsanjani, but consider it more like a boutique style corruption compared to a wholesale institutionalized corruption today.

    The whole attack against Rafsanjani is a deflection to ensure no one criticizes the true thief in the house. The only solution is the elimination of Khamanei and his gang.

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