‘Welcome, Mahmoud!’ (La Hora, Ecuador)
Even as tension over the Strait of Hormuz escalates, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is touring Latin America as a way of showing Iran has friends in the U.S. ‘backyard.’ But this tongue-in-cheek welcome to the Iranian leader by columnist Luis A. Vivanco of Ecuador’s La Hora goes to show that not everyone is buying the story.
For La Hora of Ecuador, Luis A. Vivanco starts out this way:
Mahmoud, I’ve been waiting for you. For so long you failed to show. Precisely five years. Five years … just imagine. We remember like it was yesterday, when you came to the inauguration of our beloved president [Rafael Correa]. It filled us with pride to know that we were finally part of a new axis. Some called it “evil,” but we all knew that behind it all was pure and simple revolution.
It’s just that we are so similar. Our markets are complimentary – and our trade is “going through the roof.” Iran represents a whole 0.02 percent of our exports. It’s an unadulterated bonanza! Thanks for shopping, and come again soon.
And like you, we live under a revolutionary regime, where the concept of universally-accepted human rights has been reinvented for the benefit of our ever-so noble civil servants. Both here and in Iran, we understand that freedom of expression is an obstacle to progress, and the official word is the squeaky-cleanest, most trustworthy – and the safest.
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