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Iran: Memo from the President to the Supreme Religious Leader
A Publius Essay | 20 November 2001 | Publius

Posted on 11/20/2001 12:29:58 PM PST by Publius

From: Mohammed Khatami, President
To: Ali Khamenei, Supreme Religious Leader

Subject: Changed Circumstances

The collapse of the Taliban in Afghanistan has changed the geopolitical equation drastically, and it is time for Iran to reevaluate its options. Please note that I warned you about this after the World Trade Center incident. To use an American expression, “There is a new sheriff in town, and he is urinated off.” [Difficult translation from the Farsi.]

Osama bin Laden is Not Our Friend

Osama Bin Laden has taken great pains to parallel the life of the Prophet, and it is apparent he has positioned himself to be the Mahdi. This is a direct challenge to Shiism and Iran. Sunni prophecy states that the Mahdi will be Sunni, and the False Madhi will be Shia. Our Shia prophecy states that the Mahdi will be Shia, and the False Madhi will be Sunni. In both prophecies, the Mahdi will defeat the False Madhi, march on the holy cities and convert the world. There is no getting around this: It’s one or the other.

Had bin Laden succeeded in defying the Americans and sending an army to march on Mecca and Jerusalem, the Islamic world would have seen that the Sunni prophecies were correct. In such a situation, Shiism would be seen as a heresy, and all of us would be condemned as heretics. Eventually you, myself, and all other Shia mullahs would shortened by the length of a head.

I argued vehemently in the past, my learned colleague, that your sporadic secret support of the Taliban and bin Laden was a high-risk tactic and a dangerous mistake. Fortunately this is a mistake from which we can recover.

It is imperative that Osama bin Laden be eliminated. The best solution to this problem would be to capture him, take him to Qom, try him under the Sharia and behead him on international television. (We could make a fortune selling broadcast rights.)

I do not know the mind of Allah, and I would hope He is willing to wait a few centuries before bringing the Mahdi and False Mahdi into the world for their great contest. But if it is His will that this be the time, who can prove bin Laden the False Mahdi?

The Situation at Home

Had this crisis come upon us during the lifetime of our late, exalted leader, Rudollah Khomenei, all of Iran would have risen as one to fight. But our leader told our men and women to bear many children, not understanding what would happen when the entire nation went through puberty at the same time.

Today, were any mullah to attempt a jihad against the False Mahdi, the people would refuse to fight. The Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran is a weak reed to lean upon when 70% of our people want to replace it with the Constitution of the United States. The female 35% yearns for the day when they can wear miniskirts, fishnet stockings and stiletto heels. The male 35% yearns for the day when the first “Hooters” opens in downtown Teheran. (I never understood the Americans obsession with owls.)

My learned colleague, since I came to power four years ago, we have fought in the press and in the courts. When you sent your soldiers to enforce your unpopular laws, I told the people to remain peaceful so as to avoid a bloody confrontation. Your insistence on enforcing the law against satellite dishes was sheerest folly. The single worst time to risk a popular uprising is when foreign soldiers occupy the house next door.


That camel dropping of a nation was once a part of our traditional sphere of influence. When the Soviets began playing the Great Game and helped overthrow King Zahir in 1973, we let Afghanistan slip away. Then the Americans and the Pakistanis removed the Soviets and handed everything to the Taliban, a group of Sunni heretics, for the sake of stability. The Americans came to regret that decision quickly enough.

With the Taliban gone, Afghanistan threatens to dissolve into civil war. It is apparent that the Americans will keep the territorial boundaries of Afghanistan intact, but will divide the country into spheres of influence controlled by the armies of the various Muslim occupiers. I do not see the Iran on that list. To use an American expression related to their national game of poker, “You need to sit at the table to play.”


Mr. Bush and his people have been kicking donkeys and taking appellations. [Again, questionable translation from the Farsi.] You have seen what they did to Afghanistan. It may take them a year to build a coalition and organize their military forces, but once they have done so, the Americans and their allies will obliterate Saddam Hussein. This time Iraq will be dismembered with the Turks, Kuwaitis and other victors taking much of the country. What remains may well be merged with Jordan under young King Abdullah of the House of Hashem, a man who is almost an American. Again, my honored colleague, I do not see Iran on that list of victors.

But I see us on another list. Once Iraq is dismembered, the eyes of America will turn to Iran. And they will not like what they see.

The Saudi Gambit

You have spent the past three years working on a relationship with Crown Price Abdullah of the House of Saud. Because of his desire to bring the Americans to their knees, he was willing to take the risk of friendship with a Shia mullah and use our assets to terrorize the American infidels out of his country. But he was no fool! He knew very well the identity of the “pilgrims” who seized the Grand Mosque in 1979, and he knew very well that our eyes stared straight through him to Mecca and Medina. Your strategy succeeded in splitting the Saudi royal family, but now that strategy has backfired.

The Crown Prince was willing to play both sides and back bin Laden, as did you. You can be sure the Americans are interviewing the 5000 heirs of the royal family to find a suitable replacement for Abdullah.

My Trip to America

The Americans have worked hard to pin Lockerbie on the Libyans so as to facilitate the normalization of relations with Iran. But don’t be fooled, my learned colleague, they know who really did it, how, and why. That was why I decided to take the risk of a trip to America.

After Afghanistan the Americans were holding a royal flush, and we were holding a busted flush. (Come to my office some time, and I will explain the difference.) I decided to draw some new cards at the United Nations when I issued that unconditional condemnation of Islamic terrorism. Please note that I did not use the “weasel words” so common to politics. (The Americans have such quaint expressions about animals: donkeys, owls and now weasels.)

I spoke plainly, without your approval, and I got results: A discreet inquiry from the American State Department. I want to thank you for your prompt response to my request. The Americans appreciated your removing our 700 soldiers from Yugoslavia and sending them to Afghanistan. Our soldiers and their special forces have worked well together, and they appreciate the intelligence we are discreetly providing them. That working relationship is critical for our future.


It is time for us to bury the outmoded rhetoric about the “Great Satan”. First, our people no longer buy it; they want to be Americanized. Second, we are witnessing the re-colonization of the oil-bearing lands. In this new order, we can be colonizers or colonized. (In the English language, the words “colony” and “colon” differ by only one letter. Come to my office and I’ll explain.)

Do we owe anything to the Sunni heretics? Do we owe anything to the Arabs? They are neither of our faith nor our blood.

To use an expression common in the American financial community, “we are being offered a ground floor opportunity in a major growth industry.” The Yankee traders are proud of their business acumen and negotiating skills. Let’s see how they compare to us Persians.

TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; Miscellaneous
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1 posted on 11/20/2001 12:29:59 PM PST by Publius
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To: Publius
That is awesome!
2 posted on 11/20/2001 12:40:11 PM PST by Dixie republican
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To: Dixie republican
First Publius Essay I've written in a year. So many FReepers don't know about the internecine warfare in the Iranian government. I wanted to explain who the players were by using a little humor.
3 posted on 11/20/2001 12:43:31 PM PST by Publius
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To: Sabertooth; A.J.Armitage
4 posted on 11/20/2001 12:44:02 PM PST by Publius
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To: Persian_Libertarian
Did I get it straight?
5 posted on 11/20/2001 12:45:14 PM PST by Publius
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To: Publius
Well done. Good job with the difficult translations, too!
6 posted on 11/20/2001 12:48:26 PM PST by Dog Gone
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To: Publius
A minor quibble: I don't think that a learned Shia would use the term "Mahdi" to describe the prophesied leader--they would call him "the Twelfth Imam." But an excellent analysis otherwise.
7 posted on 11/20/2001 12:53:04 PM PST by denydenydeny
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To: denydenydeny
Thanks. I'll need to work on my Shia colloquialisms.
8 posted on 11/20/2001 12:56:19 PM PST by Publius
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To: Publius
Verrrryyyy interesting indeed.... As I read the piece, I was trying really hard to figure out if it was fact, fiction or a bit of both.
9 posted on 11/20/2001 1:04:19 PM PST by Donna Lee Nardo
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To: Publius
Subject: FW: Intercepted Taliban Intracave Memo

The following intracave memo was intercepted by sophisticated U.S. surveillance equipment:

From: Bin Laden, Osama
Sent: Monday, November 12, 2001 11:14 AM
To: Cavemates
Subject: Cave Memo

Hi guys. We've all been putting in long hours, but we've really come together as a group and I love that. Big thanks to Omar for putting up the poster that says "There is no I in team" as well as the one that says "Hang In There, Baby." That cat is hilarious. However, while we are fighting a jihad, we can't forget to take care of the cave. And frankly I have a few concerns.

First of all, while it's good to be concerned about cruise missiles, we should be even more concerned about the scorpions in our cave. Hey, you don't want to be stung and neither do I, so we need to sweep the cave daily. I've posted a sign up sheet near the main cave opening.

Second, it's not often I make a video address but when I do, I'm trying to scare the most powerful country on earth, okay? That means that while we're taping, please do not ride your razor scooter in the background. Just while we're taping. Thanks.

Third point, and this is a touchy one. As you know, by edict, we're not supposed to shave our beards. But I need everyone to just think hygiene, especially after mealtime. We're all in this together.

Fourth: food. I bought a box of Cheez-Its recently, clearly wrote "Osama" on the front, and put it on the top shelf. Today, my Cheez-Its were gone. Consideration. That's all I'm saying.

Finally, we've heard that there may be American soldiers in disguise trying to infiltrate our ranks. I want to set up patrols to look for them. First patrol will be Omar, Muhammed, Abdul, Achmed, and Mike.

Death to infidels and Happy Ramadan,


10 posted on 11/20/2001 1:07:15 PM PST by VRWCmember
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To: Donna Lee Nardo
It's a fictional way of explaining some complicated facts. As the vendor says in the baseball park, "You can't tell the players without a program."
11 posted on 11/20/2001 1:09:39 PM PST by Publius
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To: Dog Gone
Those translations were tough. Mr. Khatami was confused by the American references to animals in our colloquialisms. He especially couldn't understand why American males love cats.
12 posted on 11/20/2001 1:11:08 PM PST by Publius
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To: Publius
President Khatami is quite a stylist. :-)
13 posted on 11/20/2001 1:27:04 PM PST by A.J.Armitage
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To: Publius
14 posted on 11/20/2001 1:27:55 PM PST by Dog Gone
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To: A.J.Armitage
President Khatami received his education as a civil engineer in West Germany back when the late shah was sending his people abroad for college. He still speaks German fluently.

After his appearance at the Newark basilica (after his UN speech), Khatami and Archbishop Myer spoke in German for a while. I'd have loved to be a fly on the wall for that conversation.

15 posted on 11/20/2001 1:35:54 PM PST by Publius
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To: Publius
Wow, outstanding job of putting the pieces together in once accessible place.

I'd love to see what you've got on the Shia vs. Sunni conflict over the Mahdi.

16 posted on 11/20/2001 1:40:24 PM PST by Sabertooth
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To: Victoria Delsoul; harpseal; Travis McGee; Spirit Of Truth; Manny Festo; The Documentary Lady...

17 posted on 11/20/2001 1:40:52 PM PST by Sabertooth
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To: Trident/Delta
"Sabertooth" wants the lowdown on the Mahdi/False Mahdi dichotomy. You've been in Saudi Arabia for a while, so I think your reflections on the mind of the average Muslim needs an airing on this thread.
18 posted on 11/20/2001 1:47:23 PM PST by Publius
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To: Billthedrill; Libertina; big ern
19 posted on 11/20/2001 2:05:09 PM PST by Publius
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To: Dog Gone

Your point, pup?

20 posted on 11/20/2001 2:14:31 PM PST by Sabertooth
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