CNN’s Piers Morgan Interviews Iranian President Ahmadinejad
Yesterday, CNN’s Piers Morgan interviewed Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, during the latter’s visit to the United States. Ahmadinejad was in the country for a UN meeting. Although the full Morgan interview will not be released until later today, CNN has released some highlights from it. In one released clip, Morgan asked the Iranian president whether or not he would condemn the murder of American ambassador Christopher Stephens, who was killed by Islamic extremists who attacked the American embassy in Benghazi, Libya.
Ahmadinejad did not directly condemn the murder. Instead he said that the whole situation was “ugly.” He focused more on the “ugliness” of the filmmaker whose YouTube released film allegedly touched off the attacks on the US embassies in Egypt and Libya than on the ugliness attack itself. “Offending the holy prophet is quite ugly,” he said. “This has very little or nothing to do with freedom and freedom of speech.” He also said that Iran condemned “any action that is provocative offends the religious thoughts and feelings of any people.”
He also said that he hoped “the day will come in which politicians will not seek to offend those whom others hold holy.” He noted that in some places, seeking to offend people in such a way was a crime. Yet the filmmaker who produced the “Innocence of Muslims” film was not a politician. He was, instead, a private citizen.
In a nod to Morgan’s question, Ahmadinejad finally said that he rejected “any kind of extremism.” However, he continued to blame western politicians for the attack, rather than the perpetrators. “Perhaps,” he said, “if the politicians take a better position in the West vis-a-vis offensive words or thoughts or pictures towards what we hold holy, I think conditions will improve.”
In spite of Ahmadinejad’s claims that Iran rejects every type of extremism, both Ahmadinejad and Iran’s Supreme Leader, Grand Ayatollah Sayyed Ali Hosseini Khamenei have often made extreme remarks about Israel.
Earlier this year, Khameni referred to Israel as “a cancer” and said that “the Zionist regime” would have to be “removed.” He also vowed to back any nation or group that would fight against Israel.
Meanwhile, just last month, Ahmadinejad called Israel an “insult to humankind” and an “affront to all world nations.”
Filed Under: Politics
About the Author: Miranda has a B.A. in political science and has worked over a decade as a news reporter, financial news writer and political blogger. More about Miranda