What Ahmadinejad Did Not Say at the UN, that Some People Instead Chose to Hear

First, let’s start with what should be the starting point, not someone’s preferred interpretation, not a gloss, not a twist, nor an inventive rewording or taking of words out of context–but the actual spoken statement of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad at the 65th session of the UN General Assembly on 23 September 2010, with particular attention to what you hear being said starting at 09:05, and which is identical to the actual text of the speech provided by the UN, and filed with it by Iran’s Permanent Mission to the UN. I encourage readers to download it, open it, and follow along with the spoken speech, starting on page 3, or else trust the exact copy of the relevant section of the speech reproduced below:

One can analyze the current governance of the world by examining three events:
First, the event of the 11th September 2001 which has affected the whole world for almost a decade.

All of a sudden, the news of the attack on the twin towers was broadcast using numerous footages of the incident.

Almost all governments and known figures strongly condemned this incident.

But then a propaganda machine came into full force; it was implied that the whole world was exposed to a huge danger, namely terrorism, and that the only way to save the world would be to deploy forces into Afghanistan.

Eventually Afghanistan, and, shortly thereafter, Iraq were occupied.

Please take note:

It was said that some three thousands people were killed on September 11th, for which we are all very saddened. Yet, up until now, in Afghanistan and Iraq hundreds of thousands of people have been killed, millions wounded and displaced and the conflict is still going on and expanding.

In identifying those responsible for the attack, there were three viewpoints.

1- That a very powerful and complex terrorist group, able to successfully cross all layers of the American intelligence and security, carried out the attack. This is the main viewpoint advocated by American statesmen.

2- That some segments within the U.S. government orchestrated the attack to reverse the declining American economy and its grips on the Middle East in order also to save the Zionist regime. The majority of the American people as well as other nations and politicians agree with this view.

3- It was carried out by a terrorist group but the American government supported and took advantage of the situation. Apparently, this viewpoint has fewer proponents.

The main evidence linking the incident was a few passports found in the huge volume of rubble and a video of an individual whose place of domicile was unknown but it was announced that he had been involved in oil deals with some American officials. It was also covered up and said that due to the explosion and fire no trace of the suicide attackers was found.

There remain, however, a few questions to be answered:

1- Would it not have been sensible that first a thorough investigation should have been conducted by independent groups to conclusively identify the elements involved in the attack and then map out a rational plan to take measures against them?

2- Assuming the viewpoint of the American government, is it rational to launch a classic war through widespread deployment of troops that led to the death of hundreds of thousands of people to counter a terrorist group?

3- Was it not possible to act the way Iran countered the Riggi terrorist group who killed and wounded 400 innocent people in Iran. In the Iranian operation no innocent person was hurt.

It is proposed that the United Nations set up an independent fact-finding group for the event of September 11th so that in the future, expressing views about it is not forbidden.

If Ahmadinejad Said Something About 9/11, It Must Be Inflammatory!

Very clearly, if one is calm, sensible, rational, and without a comprehension disorder brought on by severe ideological conditioning, Ahmadinejad has said there are three different views about the events of 11 September 2001, with reference to those responsible for the attacks. He has not said which one he endorses. If you accuse him of endorsing one view, then one can just as easily say that he is endorsing either of the other views, or even less logical, that he endorses all of the competing views. Ahmadinejad states, in his second point under “identifying those responsible for the attack” that the “majority of the American people as well as other nations and politicians agree” that it was orchestrated by the U.S. government. One wonders where he gets the idea that the majority of Americans are “9/11 truthers” (not that he is known for the high esteem in which he holds American beliefs), but the point is that he is not making an argument that the number of believers in a claim makes that claim correct.

That is not what significant elements in the mainstream U.S. media heard. They heard Ahmadinejad, 9/11, inside job, and they were done with it.

The New York Times said “President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran made a series of incendiary remarks in his speech to the United Nations General Assembly on Thursday, notably the claim that the United States orchestrated the Sept. 11 attacks to rescue its declining economy, to reassert its weakening grip on the Middle East and to save Israel.”

So eager was NYT to add its condemnation, in its own editorializing article, that it was later forced to print a “correction“–see the bottom of the page: “In his speech, Mr. Ahmadinejad asserted various theories about the origin of the attacks, including the possibility that they had been planned by the United States. He did not say that the United States had planned the attacks.” That’s a pretty big correction, considering that it completely contradicts and invalidates the very start of the article! The correction should appear at the top of the page.

The NYT’s Neil MacFarquhar also notes that his statement prompted 33 delegations to get up and walk out on Ahmadinejad. For those who like myself followed the speech live, you will recall that almost as soon as Ahmadinejad started to speak about 9/11, the U.S. delegation rose to leave, and had left well before he could finish his remarks–they were waiting for the first chance to do so, as keen as they claim to be about dialogue and diplomacy, and gave in to their reflex, now virtually instinctive reactions: Ahmadinejad, Iran, 9/11, intolerable.

The U.S. Mission, as NYT notes, “swiftly” issued a “terse response”: “Mr. Ahmadinejad has yet again chosen to spout vile conspiracy theories and anti-Semitic slurs that are as abhorrent and delusional as they are predictable.” Now they are hearing Ahmadinejad also attacking all Jews, and presumably Palestinians as well, because his remarks were “anti-Semitic.” He chose to “spout vile conspiracy theories”…and yet at least one of the views presented by Ahmadinejad was the U.S. government’s own preferred view, which is a rather clumsy statement to make for those trained to represent their country as diplomats. They have now added their government’s view to the list of conspiracy theories.

CBS News was at least a little clearer and more careful than the NYT was:The U.S. delegation walked out of the U.N. speech of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Thursday after he said some in the world have speculated that Americans were actually behind the Sept. 11 terror attacks, staged in an attempt to assure Israel’s survival.” Thus they walked out because Ahmadinejad said what we already knew: that some, including many (not the majority though) of Americans, believe that the 9/11 attacks were staged by the U.S. itself. They thus also walked out on a segment of American public opinion, for which Ahmadinejad gets the blame, because apparently it is highly offensive to even observe that some speculate about the attacks in this manner. By the same logic, had Ahmadinejad referred to the fact that some Americans are racist, that would have also made him a racist.

CBS was also careful to note that “the Americans stood and walked out without listening to the third theory that the attack was the work of ‘a terrorist group but the American government supported and took advantage of the situation’.” In other words, they walked out before they even heard everything Ahmadinejad had to say on the matter, which was not much.

TIME did the best job in subjecting Ahmadinejad’s words to the kind of torture that would get them to hear what they wanted: “The Iranian leader’s U.N. General Assembly address included the bizarre — and, in Obama’s words, ‘inexcusable’ — allegation that the U.S. government had orchestrated the 9/11 attacks.” Obama also called Ahmadinejad’s statement “offensive” and “hateful.” Remarkable.

The New York Daily News published this headline: “Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad: United Nations needs to investigate my 9/11 conspiracy theory.” Investigate my conspiracy theory? Again, what he actually said:

“It is proposed that the United Nations set up an independent fact-finding group for the event of September 11th so that in the future, expressing views about it is not forbidden.”

About Those Conspiracy Theories…

Even more, the New York Daily News charges Ahmadinejad as follows: “he accused the US government of having a hand in the attacks.” They then add, quoting him from a news conference:

“An event occurred, and under the pretext of that event two countries were invaded and up to now hundreds of thousands of people have been killed as a result. Don’t you feel that that excuse has to be revised? Why do you assume that all nations must accept what the US government tells them?”

Having first planted the suggestion in readers’ heads that Ahmadinejad is speaking of 9/11 as an inside job, the hope is  that they will miss the nuance of an unrelated statement. Ahmadinejad is referring to facts: now two U.S. governments, and a countless number of official speeches and articles in the media have drummed up the idea that because of 9/11 the U.S. invaded Iraq and Afghanistan (in Bush’s case), or at least Afghanistan (Obama’s case). “The excuse has to be revised” –yes it does, because now it is accepted fact that Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11, even though more Americans still struggle with the fact that the Taleban also had nothing to do with 9/11 nor were the attacks launched from Afghanistan, nor were the alleged key actors Afghans, yet here we are occupying Afghanistan. If this is “controversial” it shows just how willfully blind, ignorant, and self-deceiving some are, ever trusting of what the state tells them.

And speaking of conspiracy theories, some would be well served to remember that when the Taleban leadership first asked the U.S. to provide evidence that their guest, Osama Bin Laden, was ultimately responsible for the attacks, that none was provided. The Taleban were being asked to hand over someone alleged of great crimes, without any evidence. Meanwhile, the U.S. continues to harbour two terrorists, whose acts of terror are documented and factually incontestable, refusing official extradition requests: one being Luis Posada Carriles, guilty of having bombed a civilian passenger jet, killing all 73 people on board, sought by Venezuela; and Emanuel Constant, Haitian death squad leader whom Haiti has repeatedly asked be deported back to Haiti to stand trial.

Another way of putting this is that the Taleban could just as easily have accused the U.S. of plotting illegal aggression based purely on a conspiracy theory, without any kind of evidence, with five repeated denials by Bin Laden. Only after years had passed did the U.S. ever furnish anything resembling an attempt at evidence, and a lone mysterious statement allegedly by Bin Laden now suddenly claimed responsibility for 9/11, even though he continues to not be listed by the FBI as wanted for that crime. Indeed, the FBI first said there was “no hard evidence connecting Bin Laden to 9/11,” then later clarified that 9/11 was not listed among the crimes for which Bin Laden is sought because “no formal charges” against him have been made, according to the Washington Post.

Given these details alone is it at least reasonable to say that questions can be asked? And can one just ask those questions without being confronted with the orthodox, not to mention hysterical response that one is alleging 9/11 was an inside job? Apparently not.

When You Start Hearing Things, What Should That Tell You?

Many Americans, and some others beyond the U.S., need to hear certain things in order to feel reassured and safe in their preferred self-perception and their preferred representation of dark and evil enemy Others. This is about myth making. Ahmadinejad is the state-designated enemy. Hating him on cue means loving America without hesitation. Unlike the U.S., which both has nuclear weapons and has used them against civilians, Iran has none. Unlike the U.S., which has invaded and occupied other nations, Iran has not. Unlike the U.S., which has threatened Iran with military action, Iran has never threatened the U.S. This is precisely what nationalistic, true believing Americans do not want to hear. Telling them such things provokes the same reaction as if you had poured acid into their ears. They would rather pick up a sharp object and ram it into their eyes than see Ahamdinejad as anything other than an evil enemy, driven by the worst intentions. This is not restricted to followers of any one partisan ideology either: you can hear these views of Iran being rejected by conservative Republicans such as Ron Paul, as you can hear them instead being endorsed by self-described Marxists.

As an example of not wanting to listen to what you would rather not hear, there is Matt Armstrong, a pseudo-academic suspended in a web of mystification spun by the powers that be, and reproduced by him and his self-styled “Mountain Runner Institute.” Armstrong prefers to fix himself within a mist of preferred representations of the U.S. and its designated enemies, in an act that he champions as “public diplomacy,” which is little more than a nice way of not saying state-sanctioned propaganda. The difference between him and a Soviet apparatchik is that the latter had guaranteed employment and free medical care, and in the end probably had a more critical mind. A transcript of our “conversation” on the topic of Ahmadinejad’s statement can be found here. Confronted with the facts, Armstrong turns to his usual tactic: resorting to insults. I am thus “ignorant,” a poor anthropologist, who engages in willful distortions and falsification. Indeed, for referring to the actual transcript of Ahmadinejad’s speech, I am accused of “removing words AND meaning” –i.e. I do not echo what he asserts without basis. If Armstrong is uncomfortable with objectivity, he finds honesty to be a loathsome stranger. One must repeat after him, word for word, or be accused of lying–he sets the bar high for himself, and very low for Ahmadinejad.

In a discussion about Wikileaks, with Armstrong desperately clawing at its surface in the vain hope of a “take down,” Armstrong invents a new meaning for “expression”: it must be “labeled” and “framed” or it is not expression. Providing him with established definitions of expression earns you the charge of “manipulating vocabulary,” of propaganda (an Orwellian charge at best from a servant of a war state). Providing dictionary definitions earns you the accusation of playing with “ambiguity,” being “lazy” and “manipulative.” He deleted a tweet (talk about “removing words”) where he called Julian Assange narcissistic, a propagandist, and criminal (but he retained his response to my challenge, and others remain as well: see here and here)–perhaps because he later said he wanted Assange on a panel. The fact that the same could be said of Obama, Hillary Clinton, Stan McChrystal, seems lost on him. He complains about Wikileaks’ release of the Collateral Murder video, but not of the crimes committed against unarmed and wounded civilians as shown in the video. It’s a crime to talk about “our” crimes. He complains that Wikileaks editorializes, then complains about the absence of framing; he complains that it is not a whistle blower organization, then calls it a whistle blower for the Taleban (of course, Assange must be added to the list of state-designated enemies, what an effective way of aligning him with those the U.S. thinks it has a right to kill)–confronted with his obvious contradictions, he denies them. If you address the subject when it is changed, he accuses you of changing the subject. I would prefer not to think of him as a mere idiot (but who obviously thinks everyone else is an idiot), but the practice of an Orwellian liar is quite unmistakable here, and not without its consultancy rewards. If there is one thing the U.S. State Department loves to hear it is to hear those who sound like the U.S. State Department.

As the U.S. faces the reality of its loosening grip on the world, some are clearly losing their grip on reality and good sense. Empires degenerate fastest when they collapse from within, and there is no mistaking the rot that exists in imperial heads as they collapse in on themselves. I would encourage other anthropologists to begin their salvage ethnography on American exceptionalism before it dies out and becomes a dusty relic in some freak show.

17 thoughts on “What Ahmadinejad Did Not Say at the UN, that Some People Instead Chose to Hear

  1. SmallAxe

    Reminds me of a game song we used to sing as children in the schoolyard:

    “Chip Chip Charlie sitting on a stone.
    Trying to make a dollar out of fifty cents.
    He twist, he twist, he twist like this …”

    These people are trying to twist fifty cents into a dollar and actually thinking that they can get away with it. Don’t be surprised if Ahmadinejad brings presentation aids the next time he undertakes the task of addressing this audience. I’d suggest that he use Elmo the puppet as a pantomime while the actual words of the speech scroll across a wide screen with a karaoke-style bouncing ball to guide the dolts through the script. I’ve heard of things being lost in the translation but here is a marvellous example of things being added – poetic license on bad political crack.

    Thanks for outlining the entire chain of events. This will remain as a well documented and extremely disheartening case of people not just hearing voices in their heads but actually carrying on frantic conversations with those voices. How can anyone now respect this particular academic as a serious scholar, if he has demonstrated publicly for the record that he cannot read and comprehend even the simplest texts?

  2. Pingback: Tweets that mention What Ahmadinejad Did Not Say at the UN, that Some People Instead Chose to Hear « ZERO ANTHROPOLOGY -- Topsy.com

  3. CM

    When I heard that the U.S. delegation (and probably the Canadian one as well) had “stood up and walked out” on Ahmadinejad’s speech, it reminded me of the character who sticks his fingers in his ears and loudly proclaims “La, la, la – I am not LIST’ening!. His speeches, at least to the UN and the west, are always logical and well-argued. In past years he was invited to Columbia University and they didn’t listen to him there, either.

    Nobody can hear anything over the rabble who denounce without either listening or understanding. I often check with Juan Cole’s blog on the interpretations of his speeches since he’s fluently multilingual. When Prof. Cole first interpreted (properly) that Ahmadinejad had not said that Israel should be “wiped off the face of the map” but rather that “he quoted an old saying of Ayatollah Khomeini calling for ‘this occupation regime over Jerusalem’ to ‘vanish from the page of time.’ ” , the boo-ers and hissers didn’t get that either.

    Many Israelis have the same hopes, like journalists Gideon Levy and Uri Avnery. Cassandras all. Not the way its usually used, as a doomsayer and pessimist, but as the poor mortal who was given the gift of prophecy, and, because she spurned the attentions of the deity who gave her the gift, was then cursed with never being believed.

    I think it was Andrew Bacevich who said that US universities were turning out huge batches of systems managers rather than critical thinkers. Nobody questions, nobody checks. They simply accept what they’re told.

    1. Maximilian Forte

      Thanks again CM, for the usual valuable notes, references, and observations. You’re right, this is not the first time that Ahmadinejad has been misquoted, selectively quoted, or mistranslated, and in the case that you mention even now media continue to repeat the fable that he called for Israel to be wiped off the map.

  4. Maximilian Forte

    Thank you SmallAxe and CM, very much.

    SmallAxe, about “demonstrated publicly for the record”…this is how that “scholar” responds:

    “mountainrunner: @1D4TW again false: I pointed you to an audio source because you clearly couldn’t read; deny/chng subj, but Ahmad. said inside job”

    First, it was not an “audio” source, but the UN video, of which the above is an exact copy (see his original statement for yourself). I can’t read? Well at least I know the difference between audio and video.

    Then he adds most definitely this time: “Ahmad. said inside job”

    Ahmadinejad also said: “It was carried out by a terrorist group but the American government supported and took advantage of the situation” and then before that said nearly the same thing: “That a very powerful and complex terrorist group, able to successfully cross all layers of the American intelligence and security, carried out the attack.”

    Black on white.

    If we follow Armstrong’s pathetic attempt at logic, then Ahmadinejad is also guilty of intentionally shoring up official U.S. claims about 9/11.

    It’s good to get a personal taste of “public diplomacy” in action. Also “demonstrated publicly for the record” on his blog which I linked to above, is that I began with comments that you would typically get from an academic peer reviewer–nothing personal, you have to be clear about your meanings and understand what established terms mean, etc. Scroll down, and you see him initiate the personal attacks. As I told him: it’s his reputation, he can do to it whatever he wants.

    1. Maximilian Forte

      You’re an idiot.

      But useful, in connection with my reference to freak shows.

      You’re the author of this wonderful remark about Wikileaks’ Collateral Murder video that shows the kind of self-blinding exceptionalist “thinking” I referred to above: it “showed American forces firing upon a group of armed insurgents. Wikileaks editorialized and ‘labeled’ the material in such a way that was propaganda at best and criminal at worst.”

      You see armed insurgents in a civilian van, with children, coming to offer aid to unarmed and wounded civilians and journalists. Then you reduce propaganda to labeling, no matter how honest and accurate it is. Finally, you call the labeling criminal, but try to avoid any mention of the war crimes committed, about which two members of the very same unit have already gone on record for saying was something they were trained to do, to indiscriminately fire at civilians. You have no case, you are a case.

      PS: This is the same person from Armstrong’s site who innocently accuses me of being “anti-Western power.” When Afghanistan is occupying cities and towns in the U.S., then call me. When Iran launches a preemptive strike against Washington, and flattens half of it, then call me. When Zimbabwe establishes its colonial rule over Britain, then call me. Until then, don’t be so tragically dumb, you disgrace the collective to which you signed over your personal identity, “US Navy Vet.” So, besides providing support for the Taleban, I am now anti-Jew. Coming up next: I steal American babies and eat them. As I said, they lose their grip on the world, and thus lose their grip on themselves, perfectly unhinged.

  5. Syd Walker

    Ahmadinejad might also have quoted from Yeats’ post-Balfour Declaration masterpiece:

    “The darkness drops again but now I know
    That twenty centuries of stony sleep
    Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
    And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
    Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?”

  6. usnavyvet

    You misrepresented the wikileaks case (again)
    See http://www.collateralmurder.wordpress.com

    Ps why do you dislike jews? Seems rather bigoted

    Max, I am in shock. Could it be that you didn’t look at the counter point made at the URL provided above? Surely somebody as learned as you would be able to see that wikileaks edited out over 15 minutes of video clearly showing that there were RPGs and AK-47s on site.

    Afghanistan: They can ask us to leave at any time. But, for some reason they prefer us to the Taliban. Go figure.

    See, what I love about you Max, is I think you honestly believe the BS you write.
    The difference between you and me regarding defense and counter insurgency is simple: I have been actually doing this type of work for 12 years. You, however, have actually done (not read about) this type of work for how long? Just wondering.

    1. Maximilian Forte

      This comment was in the spam queue, where really it ought to have stayed.

      Yes, that’s right, they were all armed insurgents, not unarmed civilians, and that van with the children really deserved to get shot to pieces. So you not only hear things, you are seeing things too. This is the wonderful thing about the psychotic militarized mind. You boast about doing this for 12 years, and yet you seem totally unfamiliar with what Ethan McCord and Josh Stieber have stated about events like those shown in the video:

      “If someone in your line gets hit with an IED, 360 rotational fire. You kill every motherfucker on the street.” Myself and Josh and a lot of other soldiers were just sitting there looking at each other like, “Are you kidding me? You want us to kill women and children on the street?”

      And you couldn’t just disobey orders to shoot, because they could just make your life hell in Iraq. So like with myself, I would shoot up into the roof of a building instead of down on the ground toward civilians. But I’ve seen it many times, where people are just walking down the street and an IED goes off and the troops open fire and kill them.

      A Lieutenant Colonel in the Pentagon already posted on this blog words that are pretty disturbing and to the same effect, it doesn’t matter if what was being fired at was a hotel with civilian journalists in Baghdad, you don’t have to wait for any gunfire to target such a building. We’ve been through this before on this blog, your comment is off topic, to say the least.

      “They can ask us to leave at any time. But, for some reason they prefer us to the Taliban. Go figure.”

      Who is THEY? The ones profiting from the cash you bring into Afghanistan? You mean war lords and private militias and local businessmen? If the Taleban were anywhere near as unpopular as you dream them to be, you wouldn’t be losing this war. The Taleban control more districts than ever, and have more fighters than ever before. The “surge” for them has been a phenomenal success, and the irony is that you helped to pay for part of it. That still makes me laugh.

      You spoke elsewhere about my “moral compass,” as if there were something deeply disturbing about being anti-war. This takes you beyond psychotic, in the way you spout militarist arguments, show total disregard for civilian lives, ignore torture, sending detainees to Uzbekistan to be boiled alive, funding war lord rapists in Afghanistan, propping up a regime that passes legislation stripping women of their rights, piling arms into private security militias that beat and murder for cash, subverting democracies around the world, sinking your filthy bases into poor countries and corrupting their governments, funding and training death squads, secret detentions, extrajudicial murders, drone strikes against villages killing hundreds of civilians, placing American citizens on CIA death lists, domestic spying, and on it goes. You miss ALL of it, because your head is so crammed with military doctrine and star-spangled excrement.

      I also gather that you do not count the resistance as being Afghans, because surely people blasting your asses off the roads are sending you a very clear message that you are not wanted. While I have never heard of pro-American demonstrations anywhere in Afghanistan, we have seen dozens of anti-American ones, with thousands participating, right up until the other day.

      Time and again I am showing you that you suffer from serious, ideologically induced hallucinations. And that is the great news, because anyone in such a state cannot any longer produce the results that match his ambitions. Don’t get me wrong: I am greatly pleased at your failure.

      No, you’re right, I don’t do counterinsurgency. Again, you’re off topic, and off your rocker. You repeat the anti-Jew insult once more, and the next time you post off topic and insulting remarks don’t expect them to appear.

  7. usnavyvet

    Max, one more thing. I noticed all 5 of your readers marked my first comment with a thumbs down :(

    Good news is, last I checked, you only had 4 readers. Bravo Max! :)

    1. Maximilian Forte

      I told you that you are an idiot, why do you refuse to believe the evidence? Only 4 readers? You don’t have the access needed to know how many readers this article has had, which stands at 191 after a mere six hours online. It’s been tweeted 23 times already, so that alone would tell you it cannot have had a mere 4 readers. You confuse readers with commentators, and as you fumble with the smallest and easiest of distinctions you achieve grand failure with anything that is more complex.

      By the way, you are also a determined liar, like your friend Matt Armstrong. Yours are not genuine mistakes, but deliberate ones. You may be too much of a cog to realize it and do it consciously, that I admit. But to call someone anti-Jewish, because he quotes correctly, and raises questions about historical events, shows what an extremist and fanatic you are.

      You are not worth my time.

  8. georgiebc

    Brilliantly responded as always. One day we will kill the propaganda machine, one day everyone will learn to think. Thanks for your tireless work towards that day …

    I love how Time managed to quote what Obama thought of Ahmadinejad’s words, much more important than the words themselves. Of course Obama’s reaction is the point … look, our fearless leader played ‘street’ basketball, and what Ahmadinejad said was ‘inexcusable’, combined with ‘So far, sanctions have not been as effective as the Administration would have liked, and most analysts still believe they’re unlikely to change Iran’s calculations in the future.’ and republicans will portray Obama ‘as going soft on Iran’ equals All Roads Lead to War.

    No need to mention any specific analysts or republicans there. Ahmadinejad himself, not to mention his words, are completely irrelevant to this ‘story’. All we really need to hear is what we already knew … Iran is the new Iraq.

    1. Maximilian Forte

      Thanks, much appreciated, both the visit and the comment. Excellent point about TIME inserting Obama’s words into what should have been a straight quote from Ahmadinejad, and an insult to readers: we can’t let you read what he really said, we need to write in the words of the Commander-in-Chief instead, to tell you what to think.

  9. Maximilian Forte

    In retrospect, I am so sorry that I deleted this comment–and very happy that I found it preserved elsewhere. It is such a valuable piece of ethnographic evidence, a testimonial document, worth preserving and cherishing:

    Comment on What Ahmadinejad Did Not Say at the UN, that Some People Instead Chose to Hear by joelhar

    Comments for ZERO ANTHROPOLOGY 2 Oct 2010, 6:10 pm CEST

    Maximilian Forte, I’ve read this entire blog and I wonder if you are aware that you are a certified idiot? Not only do you twist the facts around but you misrepresent the truth. Not only do you take delight belittling others, but you seem to try to build up your self esteem in this meaningless attempt to resurrect your obviously fragile ego. In your own words you are indeed “ignorant,” a poor anthropologist, [you] engage in willful distortions and you do engage in falsification. You also do remove words AND distort their meaning.

    Your obviously pro-communist perspective is understandable and your pursuit to belittle anything representing the freedoms enjoyed by the Western world are almost laughable. Your perspective is so skewed you obviously originate from a culture so imbued with Anti-Western and Anti-US propaganda that these distorted truths are a logical extension. Countless conversations with my Afghani neighbor resulted in me walking away, shaking my head, wondering how a person’s perspectives could be so obviously skewed with mistruths, half-truths and just outright falsehoods. But both you and he seem to enjoy your freedom of speech brought to you via this blog. You enjoy a modicum of success that you have access to a computer and use it frequently. I wonder for whom you work that you have the time to research these matters and still write as much as you do. I was tempted to use the word prolifically, but that implies a modicum of expertise based on the facts, but, sadly, that is not the case.

    Your logic is flawed, the basis for most of your arguments is unsound and your words read like skewed drivel. I pray you are not in a position where you might teach, for you are ruining a generation of students to not be objective, to not see both sides of an argument and not to reach a logical conclusion. You are part of the problem and truly exude ZERO anthropological discipline.

    1. joelhar

      I too, am glad you chose to delete my comment and I am just as happy that you chose to preserve it in this fashion. What you have succeeded in accomplishing is illustrating your willingness to tolerate opinions dissimilar to your own or lack thereof.
      When I was referred to read your blog I did not know who you were, nor was I aware of your background. The funny thing is that we work in related fields but I had never heard your name, and in my position I know most of the experts in my field. I hope to change that in the future, I’d be interested in learning your perspective on many issues.
      I continue to disagree with almost everything you’ve written and I’m seeking to understand the way you process the same information that I read, but in a totally different manner.

Comments are closed