Skip to comments.AZERBAIJAN: President Aliyev compared unfavorably to hot-headed mobster in WikiLeaks cable
Posted on 12/04/2010 7:39:12 PM PST by Pan_Yan
Azerbaijani President Iham Aliyev awoke Friday to the diplomatic equivalent of a severed horse head in his bed.
According to a leaked U.S. diplomatic cable, the staff of the U.S. Embassy in Baku has been comparing the president, rather unflatteringly, to Sonny Corleone, the most impulsive and thin-skinned of Don Vito Corleones sons in the hit novel and film trilogy, "The Godfather."
In a secret cable entitled President Ilham Aliyev Michael (Corleone) on the outside, Sonny on the inside, sent in September 2009, U.S. diplomats describe the Azerbaijan president as similar to Michael Corleone - which is to say, cool-headed and realistic - when dealing with foreign partners, but similar to Sonny Corleone - which translates to harsh, over-reactive, and increasingly authoritarian - when dealing with domestic issues.
The "Godfather" analogy in the diplomatic world is based on a short book, The Godfather Doctrine: A Foreign Policy Parable, by John C. Hulsman and A. Wess Mitchell, which uses the three fictional Corleone sons characteristics as a metaphor for different strategies of leadership: Michael is level-headed, Tom Hagan is conciliatory, and Sonny is brash, violent and prone to overreaction.
Drawing on this analogy, U.S. diplomats say there is a clear divergence in approaches between President Aliyevs domestic policies and those of his father, the former Azeri President Heyder Aliyev (who maintains a pervasive omnipresence in Azerbaijan, making him the clear "Godfather" figure).
(Excerpt) Read more at latimesblogs.latimes.com ...
Unfortunately, this probably now qualified for deep thinking in diplomatic circles.
The State Department is full of Ivy League intellectuals with superiority complexes.
These WikiLeaks are going to do a ton of damage before we’re through. Thanks, Obama, for letting this stuff out on your watch. Thanks for all your care in dealing with it.
13. (C) Aliyev said that Iranian provocations in Azerbaijan were on the rise. He specifically cited not only the financing of radical Islamic groups and Hezbollah terrorists, but also:
-- the Iranian financing of violent Ashura ceremonies in Nakhchivan,
-- the organization of demonstrations in front of the Azeri consulates in Tabriz and Istanbul,
-- a violent religious procession recently in Baku,
-- the use of the President's photo alongside the Star of David on the Azeri-language Seher TV broadcast into Azerbaijan, and
-- conflict in the Caspian.
14. (C) The President added that Azerbaijan will not reciprocate on the liberalization of the visa regime with Iran. He also noted that Azerbaijan is planning to create a TV channel in Persian that will broadcast into Iran. He said that he did not understand why the Supreme Religious Leader chose Ahmadinejad over former President Moussavi. He joked that perhaps it was too dangerous to have two ethnic Azeris at the head of the Iranian state. He said that the election fraud was outrageous, with Ahmadinejad winning in Azeri-dominated Tabriz and Moussavi winning in Tehran, where it was harder to falsify the vote. He viewed the situation as very tense within Iran and believed it could erupt at any time.
19. (C) Unprompted by U/S Burns, Aliyev spelled out the reasons Azerbaijan decided to sell gas to Russia last year, noting that ""Moscow had asked" and offered a good price for gas that was surplus anyway. But the real reason, Aliyev confided, was that the sale illustrated to "our Turkish friends" that they will not be allowed to create a gas distribution hub. "Aliyev made clear his distaste for the Erdogan government in Turkey, underscoring the "naivete" of their foreign policy and the failure of their initiatives, including the loss of support for Turkey among traditional international friends because of Ankara,s hostility to Israel. He noted that in his view, there had never been any merit to the notion of a "moderate Islamist" government in Turkey, and that Erdogan,s insistence on promoting Hamas and Gaza ) when other Arab countries were notably silent on these issues ) had brought Turkey no benefits. - US embassy cables