Women are “Strategy,” Says Iran’s Supreme Leader

6 01 2012

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei spoke at a “Forum on Strategic Thought” on Wednesday, the theme of which was “Women and Family.”  This is what he said, according to the Tehran Times:

“’The role of women in the campaign (against the Iranian dictator Mohammad Reza Pahlavi’s regime), in the victory of the Islamic Revolution, and after the revolution, particularly during the extremely difficult time of the Sacred Defense (1980-1988 Iran-Iraq war), and in various areas is an effective, special, and unique role, which cannot be measured with any criterion,” the Leader said. 

Ayatollah Khamenei also advised scholars, researchers, and the media to pay due attention to the issues of women and family from the viewpoint of Islam.

Elsewhere in his remarks, the Leader criticized the West’s attitude toward women as insulting and said that this attitude has damaged the dignity and status of women in Western societies.’”

The ambiguity of his comments surprised me.  I don’t know if it was limited reporting, or he in fact did not elaborate on the role of women during Iran’s revolution and crises, and the “special, unique role, which cannot be measured with any criterion.”  Notwithstanding the theocracy’s male-mullah-dominated power structure, it’s extremely unnerving to me that the state would define women’s roles and effectiveness.  I’d like to ask my readers to chime in on this one.

NOTE:  Everything I write in this blog constitutes my personal opinions and views.

Supremacy Squared

5 01 2012

The world now has two “Supreme Leaders”:  Ayatollah Ali Khamenei in Iran, and Kim Jong Un in North Korea.  And, the late Colonel Muammar Qaddafi called himself the “Brother Leader.”  But it’s the double “supreme” leaders that render a global enigma.  Can the world have two “supreme leaders”?  Of course, this is a rhetorical question, tinged with a dose of sarcasm.

Khamanei runs a totalitarian theocracy, based on Twelver Shiism.  Kim Jong Un, now succeeding his deceased father, Kim Jong Il, heads a totalitarian “Stalinist” state.  Both, to varying degrees, stoke personality cults, both rely on powerful militaries, and both embrace nuclear power.  The legacy of both has led their respective countries into isolation, invited harsh economic sanctions, arrested socioeconomic development, brutally repressed opposition and grossly violated human rights, and provocatively brought their countries to the brink of war without regard to the consequences of their actions, and at the expense of their own people.  Supremely reckless indeed.

NOTE:  Everything I write in this blog constitutes my personal opinions and views.