First things first: we wish the Iranian people well, following their elections.
Now to media coverage. While even an Iran-obsessive blog like this one had trouble keeping up, we did notice that at least two journalists worked tirelessly to get the word out. One of them being RFE’s Golnaz Esfandiari, who as far as we could tell was one of the first – if not the very first – to tweet the final results. Kudos.
But if we were giving out a trophy, it would definitely go to the New York Times’ Thomas Erdbrink. Particularly since we’ve gotten on his case occasionally, we feel it’s important to give credit where credit’s due. Following his twitter account on election day was riveting: hitting the pavement until he dropped, reflecting the mood among the people, telling it like it is re the regime, and of course also filing the obligatory piece.
Excellent article at that. After paying mandatory lip service to the latest vogue – the oft abused word “moderate” – he fairly quickly gets to the point:
“Rowhani’s election was not expected to represent a break with Iran’s nuclear policies (…).”
While not the most startling of revelations – readers of this blog would have noticed the attention given to Rouhani (forget SEO, can we have spelling uniformity, please?) throughout the campaign – it still needed to be said. For beneath the confetti and good cheer remains the cardinal question: what does this mean for the nuclear crisis?
Erdbrink doesn’t hesitate to answer this question, either, by choosing to illuminate Rouhani’s 2004 speech in which he “made it clear that his goal was ultimately about mastering the nuclear process” – and presenting Pakistan as his role model for defying international demands.
Great work, Mr. Erdbrink!