IRGC commander: If we had killed Rushdie, insults against the Prophet wouldn’t have taken place

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Cmdr. Ahmad Zolghadr, the deputy head of the Tehran Revolutionary Guards, has said in  a speech in Mashhad: “If we had acted on the fatwa of the late imam [Khomeini] and had killed Salam Rushdie, insult against the Prophet of Islam would not take place.”

[Apparently, he meant that subsequent perceived insults including films and cartoons, including the infamous Danish cartoon that led to violence, wouldn't have been produced.}

The British-Indian writer, Salman Rushdie, famously penned a novel by the name of The Satanic Verses,  in reaction to which Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the then Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran, issued a fatwa in February 1989, shortly before his death, urging Muslims to execute the writer on charges of apostasy, stating that his murder was Islamically lawful or halal.

Even after Rushdie recanted and claimed he had returned to the fold of Islam, Khomeini refused to lift the order.

In other news

Ali Akbar Velayati, a former foreign minister and presently adviser to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, in an interview with Bashgah-e khabarnegaran, stated that the three-man coalition of Velayati himself, Gholam Ali Haddad Adel and Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf, will introduce its chosen candidate for the presidency, along with its preferred Cabinet.

Said Velayati: “A strong government is a collection of able individuals, who are directed by a strong manager. On this basis we three individuals comprising this coalition, who in the future election in the form of a single, harmonious and coordinated team, will offer ourselves and in truth, enter the electoral fray for people to vote for one team.

“With view to the necessity of forming a primary core for this coalition, we three people decided to form a coalition and invite other friends to join this group. Perhaps the existence of numerous individuals in this coalition from the start was not possible.

“The primary core of this coalition tried to continue in the same path, and the members of this tripartite coalition of Principalists have met with Ayatollah [Mohammad Reza] Mahdavi Kani, Ayatollah [Mohammad] Yazdi, Mr. [Habibollah] Asgarowladi, Mohammad Reza Bahonar, [Mostafa] Pourmohammadi and [Yahya] Al-e Ashaq, and these meetings will also continue. The tripartite coalition looks upon the honourable Society of Seminary Teachers [of Qom] and the Society of Combantant Clerics as two pillars of the important pillars of Islamic society, who have had an important role before and after the Islamic Revolution. In our view no important political movement can be undertaken in the country without relation to the clergy.”

Former President Mohammad Khatami made a number of noteworthy comments in a meeting with the Youth Organization of the Assembly of the Imam’s Line, in which he “implicitly” thanked Habibollah Asgarowladi, the prominent member of the traditional conservative Islamic Coalition Party who has been most vocal amongst conservatives in stating that Green Movement leaders, Mir Hossein Mousavi and Hojjati al-Islam Karroubi, are not “the leaders of the sedition” [the term used by regime conservatives and neoconservatives against the movement accused of being set on overthrowing the Islamic Republic in the aftermath of the 2009 presidential election].

Other prominent conservative voices, however, such as Ayatollah Ahmad Khatami, one of Tehran’s influential Friday Prayer Leaders, has been adamant in their denunciations of Mousavi and Karroubi, stating unequivocally that they are “leaders of the sedition.”

A Hawaiian singer/ songwriter called Kawehi has released a song titled Neda, the video of which features footage and pictures of the young girl, Neda Agha-Soltan, whose tragic death in the aftermath of the 2009 postelection protests was captured on camera and sent shock waves across the world.

The hardliner editorial team at Serat News, close to the Kayhan Institute, have picked up on the video which is circulating on social networking sites, and have reacted thus:

“With the end of mediocre artists who would work for the seditious current [Green Movement], in order to further their goals they have been forced to resort to international whores.”

“Kawehi, singer/songwriter and on the basis of that what Americans themselves have said about her “a speaker of the most nonsensical statements” and they name her a ‘shit talker’.”