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Revolution Anniversary March Without Portraits of Ahmadinejad: The Infighting Continues

By Arash Bahmani, Rooz Online

"People Now Know Which Statistics Are Real and Which Fictitious"

Ahmadinejad speaking in Tehran's Azadi Square on February 11

On the very day that the media was focusing on the absence of portraits of Ahmadinejad in the march commemorating the victory of the Islamic revolution in 1979, the minister of energy of Ahmadinejad's administration said, "People understand by looking at the faces of officials whether the statistics they provide are true or not."

And so began a new round of attacks and counterattacks between Ahmadinejad's allies and his opponents. The verbal barrage reached a point where Administration supporters even called Majlis deputies critical of the government a bunch of "Thieves in the house of people."

In a separate row, the head of Majlis' research center Ahmad Tavakoli denied the accusations leveled by the administration's first vice-president Mohammad-Reza Rahimi against him and announced that he would file a lawsuit against him.

Alef site, belonging to Ahmad Tavakoli wrote that Rahimi made these remarks after "Dr Tavakoli publicly criticized the pressure exerted on the judiciary to dispatch an investigator from the financial corruption case to interview Tavakoli and stressed that like any other defendant Rahimi too had to be summoned by the court and make himself present in the court for the case."

Tavakoli denied all the accusations raised by Rahimi and said none of them were new and that they had been responded to.

This eighth-Majlis MP also said that the accusations indicated who had been behind similar anonymous charges in the past, adding, "I have not sued those sites and do not intend to but now will file a suit against Mr. Rahimi so that the judiciary can investigate the issue."

Khabar Online site close to Majlis speaker Ali Larijani also jumped in the game and through an editorial wrote that no portraits of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had been distributed to the marchers commemorating the anniversary of the Islamic revolution in 1979, on February 11. This site close to the speaker of the eight Majlis opined that the reason no such placards were present during the march was that the "marchers were not ready to carry portraits of Ahmadinejad."

This is of course not the first round of verbal attacks and counter attacks between Ahmadinejad's allies and his opponents, as each side has published "documents" to prove the other is corrupt. But now that Ahmadinejad has been successfully summoned to the Majlis, his allies have focused their attacks on the principlists inside the Majlis.

Soon after the Majlis voted to summon Ahmadinejad to the parliament, a website close to the president wrote that people should expect "historic expose by Ahmadinejad."

Another pro-Ahmadinejad website called Majlis deputies to be "thieves, corrupt and hypocrites in the house of people," and added that the president would make revelations during his Majlis appearance.

In related news, minister of energy Parviz Fatah announced that people understood from the faces of officials whether the statistics they provided were real or fictitious.

Commenting on the March 2 Majlis elections, a leading member of the central council of the Islamic Coalition Party Assadollah Badamchian said that people who are obedient to the supreme leader should be elected to the national assembly. The principlists have gathered around clerics Mahdavi Kani and Mesbah Yazdi to create unity for the Majlis elections." These remarks come at a time when the Steadfast Front (Jebhe Paidari) recently announced that it would present a Majlis candidate list of its own, separate from that of the principlists united under the conservative Jebhe Motahed Osoolgarayan front. The Steadfast Front has announced that its list of candidates for the Majlis awaits confirmation by conservative ayatollah Mesbah Yazdi.

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