During his speech to the United Nations General Assembly, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi declared “victory” over the United States and “the old liberal order.”
“Efforts to universalize American ideals throughout the world have proven to be failures,” Raisi told a gathering of international leaders in New York. “There is widespread optimism for the establishment of a new and equitable world order.” The abandoning of global hubris in favor of regional cooperation and orders is central to the emerging world order.”
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Raisi’s triumphant tone came only days after the one-year anniversary of the murder of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old woman who died while in the custody of Iran’s so-called morality police, provoking widespread demonstrations. The Iranian president mocked the popular protest, which he blamed on foreign meddling.
“Last year was the year of the victory of the people of Iran,” Raisi said, per a live U.N. interpreter. “Certain Western nations and their intelligence services during the past year made a grave mistake by the miscalculation that didn’t [fail] to diminish and undervalue and underestimate the power of the Iranian people.”
This claim underlines Raisi’s view that the US and its allies instigated the months-long protests in the country. In March, Iranian judicial officials declared that 22,000 people had been pardoned; additionally, “at least 527 people, including 71 children, were killed, and hundreds of protesters were severely injured,” according to a U.N. estimate released that month.
“Their whole [propaganda] is that no anti-regime movement is organic, and no anti-regime movement is free of foreign influence, whether that be foreign governments, foreign media, or foreign kind of elitist,” said Behnam Ben Taleblu, senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies. “They spin their continued presence [in power] as a result of the nation intervening on their behalf to thwart enemy plots to separate society from the state.” They want to appropriate the vocabulary of street or social appeal.”
During Raisi’s statement, Israeli Ambassador Gilad Erdan, who called Raisi’s attendance “a new moral stain for the United Nations,” held up a photo of Amini. U.N. security took him out of the assembly room.
“Meanwhile, outside the UN, hundreds of Iranians were protesting, begging for help from the international community,” Erdan wrote on social media. “Those who roll out the red carpet for murderers and antisemites must be held accountable for their actions.”
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According to the Organization of Iranian American Communities, “several thousand Iranians” attended the protest to commemorate murdered dissidents and condemn a recent US agreement that secured the return of five American hostages in exchange for approving South Korea’s payment of nearly $6 billion to settle an outstanding oil debt, a transaction stalled by the threat of US sanctions.
“Releasing 6 billion dollars as a ransom to the world’s leading state-sponsor of terrorism is a heinous act that cannot be justified under any pretext,” OIAC Advisory Board Chairman Ramesh Sepehrrad stated in a statement to the Washington Examiner on Monday evening. “This will only embolden the regime, leading to more hostage-taking and terrorism.”
Those Americans landed in the United States on Tuesday, as President Joe Biden and Raisi prepared for their UN speeches. Siamak Namazi, the longest-serving American in that group, urged the US to adopt “the kind of measures that would upend the cost-benefit calculations of Tehran’s foul business” or risk even more “state hostage-taking.”
US authorities, for their part, argue that the deal resulted in “no profit” for Iran. “There is no profit that the Iranians got from this deal,” said Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield, who oversees the US delegation at the UN. “We freed five unjustly detained American citizens and returned them to their families.” And what the Iranians received were five of their countrymen who were held accountable for their actions. And, according to your information, one or two of them do not want to return home.”
Raisi, whose dictatorship has emerged as a Russian arms supplier with strong diplomatic ties to China, embraced the notion of a transnational alliance to destabilize Western hegemony.
“The global landscape is also undergoing a paradigm shift toward an emerging international order, which is irreversible,” he added. “The equation attributed to Western hegemony no longer resonates with the diverse realities of today’s world.”
Source: Washington Examiner