In the days since Iranian president-elect Hassan Rouhani won an Iranian election that analysts fear was stacked for him by the regime, Western journalists and analysts have called attention to his history of conducting violence and terrorism against regime opponents domestically and abroad.
Iranian proxies and clients in Lebanon and Syria, in contrast, expressed enthusiasm. Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah offered his support, celebrating among other things ties between Rouhani and the ruling clerical regime:
“We in Hezbollah, and with us all the mujahideen [fighters] and this country of resistance, offer our blessing on the occasion of winning deservedly the confidence of the great nation,” Nasrallah added.
He said Rouhani’s election had made the wish of Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei come true. “As this political saga revived, by your blessed election, the hopes and aspirations of the people of our beloved Iran, it also renewed hopes for all your friends and beloved brothers from the oppressed Arab and Islamic peoples,” Nasrallah said.
Syria’s embattled rule Bashar al-Assad – who, due largely to support from Iran and Hezbollah, has weathered a two-year war waged by rebels seeking his overthrow – emphasized unity between Tehran and Damascus:
Assad said first on the agenda for the two leaders would be “confronting the plots of hegemony and aggression against the national sovereignty in our region in a way that reflects positively on the peoples of both friendly countries,” according to a report carried by Syria’s state-run SANA news agency. He also called for upgrading the cooperation between the two countries in a number of fields, according to the report.
Rouhani himself has expressed support for continued efforts by Iran and Hezbollah to bolster Assad:
“Syria has constantly been on the frontline of fighting Zionism and this resistance line must not be weakened,” Hassan Rohani said on Tuesday.
“Syria has a particular position in the region and in the past 60 years has formed the resistance line against the Zionist regime [of Israel],” he told Turkey’s Ambassador to Tehran Umit Yardim. Rohani stressed the importance of refraining from meddling in the internal affairs of Syria or any other regional countries.
[Photo: MTVLebanonNews / YouTube]