tehranbureau An independent source of news on Iran and the Iranian diaspora

Iranian Voices: Mottaki's Unceremonious Dismissal

25 Dec 2010 02:5114 Comments


Photo: Writing on door says, "Push," "Exit."

Manouchehr Mottaki, recently removed from his position as Iran's foreign minister, responded to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's remarks about his dismissal in Istanbul, calling it "immoral behavior." He also issued a press release in which he discredited the accounts of the incident offered by the president, his cabinet, and his chief of staff, Esfandiar Rahim Mashaei.

"Someone should tell him [Mottaki] you are well acquainted with the president's diplomatic etiquette and his refined manner. How is it that you still haven't realized he [Ahmadinejad] has no regard for any diplomatic conduct? How is it that you hadn't realized until now that lying and cheating come naturally to him? How is it that you did not know until now who you were working for? You can't befriend the caravan and be partners with the highwaymen. "

--Blogger, 27

* Mottaki began his press release: "Following the un-Islamic, insulting and in-violation-of-political-and-diplomatic-etiquette manner of dismissing the foreign minister..."


You [Mottaki] traitor and agent of the global arrogance, who the intelligence ministry has a thick file on you, that shows you are a spy. Mahmoud said in Istanbul that these things are common in Iran, didn't he?

--Comment on Persian language website

* Individuals prosecuted by IRI officials are almost always branded as "spies," "Enemy agents," and/ or "MKO members."


The day when this Manouchehr [Mottaki] came to the [Foreign] Ministry to create a job for his wife, he established the directorate for women at the Foreign Ministry and appointed his wife, who has a B.A. in obstetrics as the head of this organ.... From now on this directorate will be interesting [to watch]...because it's the [former] minister's wife's [department].

--Comment on Persian language website


"What I think about most these days are the things Mottaki said during Ahmadinejad's election campaign, when he called Ahmadinejad a divine blessing for Iranians and the Muslim world. People are interesting. Now that they have taken him by the tail and thrown him out he is singing a different tune."

--Political activist, 26


"'God's servant -- Manouchehr Mottaki.' You really are only one of God's creatures now, Mr. Former Minister and current creature of God."

--Journalist, 29

* Mottaki signed his press release, "God's servant -- Manouchehr Mottaki." The expression "bande khoda," which translates as "God's servant" or "God's creature," is also used to express pity for someone.


"When even a minster does not have job security in the country, what can you say about the rest of us? You call this a country?"

--Courtesy of "You Call This a Country" blog


"Imagine being picked up from the airport in a limo and having to go back in a cab."

--Politics major, 25, Tehran

* Reference to the fact that Mottaki was officially received at the airport in Senegal, but that after his dismissal there was no need for the Senegalese to officially send him off.


"This idiot of a president that we have has caused us to lose face even in Africa. Like a stubborn child, he had to take his domestic dispute abroad. Everyone knows this was part of their mafia wars."

--Cab driver, 60, Tehran

* Reference to the long-standing dispute between Ahmadinejad and Mottaki.


"I heard from a credible source that the Senegalese were in a meeting with Mottaki when they received a cable telling them that he had been fired and they were the ones who told him he was fired. Apparently the Senegalese told him that the meeting was no longer a diplomatic one but they could still be friends!"

--Journalist, 30

* Motakki confirmed in his press release that he was informed of his dismissal by the Senegalese.


"Idiots ask why Mottaki was not present at his farewell ceremony. The answer is: IQ! When they didn't inform him he was fired, how can you expect them to tell him about the farewell ceremony?"

--Anonymous comment on Persian-language website

* Many have been speculating as to why Mottaki was not present at his own farewell ceremony and the inauguration of his replacement, Ali Akbar Salehi. Mottaki confirmed in his press release that no one had informed him about his dismissal, his farewell ceremony, or that Salehi would be replacing him. Iranians use IQ in disparagement to convey that the person referred to is unintelligent.


"I love how they coordinate things. Why doesn't someone tell them to coordinate things so that Mottaki doesn't come and spoil everything for them. When you know there is someone who knows what you did last Muharram, don't provoke him to spill the beans."

--Architect, 32, Tehran

* Reference to the movie "I Know What You Did Last Summer." Mottaki was fired in the Islamic month of Muharram. Mashaei, Ahmadinejad's chief of staff, claimed Mottaki had been informed of his dismissal before going to Senegal and as everyone thought he would be back on Monday they informed the press about his removal. In his press release, Mottaki rejected both claims.

Copyright © 2010 Tehran Bureau

SHAREtwitterfacebookSTUMBLEUPONbalatarin reddit digg del.icio.us


It is amazing how these guys only get to know the true nature of the very evil system they helped create only after they are tussed aside like a used rag. Mousavi & Karroubi after the sham election and now the infamous Mottaki.There is no honor amongst thieves and murderers.

Niloofar / December 25, 2010 5:55 PM

you got a point there Niloofar. I wouldn't necessarily call moosavi or karroubi thives and murderers... but it is indeed amazing how fast these people change course... is it the denial? is it the personification of the proverb the rider knows nothing of the runner?
or is it simply, instinctivly, basically all about the benefit?

Heidi / December 25, 2010 8:41 PM

I agree with Heidi and Niloofar. Now the system they helped create is destroying them. What goes around comes around.

12th Imam / December 25, 2010 11:40 PM

In our own words, "saggeh zard baradareh shoghaleh!" They're all cut from the same cloth. They're with the government and totally supportive of the direction the country's doing, until they government's not supportive of them. At that time, they become like Ganji, if they can flee, or Moosavi, or this idiot. Ducks in a row, set'em up and shoot'em down.

Ali / December 26, 2010 6:17 AM

Well-said Niloofar.

I recently came across an old online article from an old MKO Newspaper from 1979/1980 when they described and celebrated (in most gleeful way) the execution of 4 of Shah's generals soon after their conviction by Revolutionary Court.

Not long after they suffered the same faith at the hands of the same Revolutionary Court.

Last year Moussavi and Karoubi got the taste of the same medicine.

Now Mottaki and other insiders ( who helped creat this Frankenstein monster) have the table turned on them.

My hope is that Iranians do things differently this time when the regime goes (And it will---its a matter of time), and not repeat their errors of early years of 1979. violence, revenge, vengence and intolerance creates the same cycle.

ahvaz / December 26, 2010 6:50 AM

well i just want to make the note that although moosavi by no means can measure up to my expectations of a leader for this movement, I still consider him rather a decent man who has made mistakes than a devious, cunning man thirsty of power. after all he left office at the hight of his courier by his own choice.
but ahvaz I too hope it all goes as you said.
this time we shall take our time... no revenge, no violence no intolerence... may me find our peace and virtue rather in listening than shouting

Heidi / December 26, 2010 9:35 AM

"the Persian month of Muharram"!!!!!!!!

Do you mean the Islamic month of Muharram?! TB editor, please correct!

Kia / December 26, 2010 11:06 AM

I do agree the Barbaric regime is approaching its end. What I am worried about is the current state of readiness of Iranians for a meaningful change towards democracy. I see no one group and no plan(s) of any kind. Iranians are in dire need of a neutral leadership. One that can satisfy the essential needs and prepare the ground work for a referendum and eventual future system of governance. It is only through a pluralistic approach that the errors of 1979, violence, vengence, intolerance and imposition of a barbaric system can be avoided. Such approach requires advance planning, management, financing and leadership. Do you see anything on the horizon?

Niloofar / December 26, 2010 12:26 PM

Fairly typical selections with which to fit in to a anti-Iran narrative.

Pirouz / December 26, 2010 12:55 PM

Thank you, Kia.

Moderator / December 26, 2010 4:43 PM

@ Niloufar

Dear shirzan! What do you mean, there are no groups with plans to fill in the void? What about the.... women? If anything or any group has been denied most of its rights, it has been the women (and bahai's). I have high expectations and regard for the women movement, and I believe very firmly (intuition) that the next president of Iran will be a woman! The women of our country will change its course for the good, my faith is in their prevailing.

Green messenger / December 27, 2010 2:22 AM

God speed.

Niloofar / December 27, 2010 6:43 AM

GM, you rock.

green hoori / December 31, 2010 2:45 AM

Just like the pre-revolution Iran during the Shah, it is very hard to pinpoint which groups are poised to "fill in the void". That is a very good thing. Because the regime does not have fixed and identified targets to demolish. It is very hard to go after oblique and moving targets. A close look at what is going on in Iran right now shows the components for resistance and change are all there. Just wait for the "right" moment. The regime is doing a perfect job of cutting the limb it is sitting on.

Anoosh / January 2, 2011 1:43 AM