Raisi: Raise or raze?

I’ve written briefly about Iran’s newly elected president — the mass murderer Ebrahim Raisi — in “Meet Iran’s new prez,”, “Biden sleepers will not awake,” and “Hope springs supreme” (more here). Raisi brings a bracing clarity to Iran’s public face. Even John Kerry might have a problem prettifying it. He probably won’t be bragging that the guy is his friend, anyway.

Spectator deputy editor Dominic Green takes up Raisi’s election in the context of American national security politics in “Raisi’s election confirms the futility of returning to the Iran Deal.” Dominic is a trained historian who writes with wit and bite. The Spectator has made his column accessible for the time being at our request. It opens this way:

The president is a placeholder for the people who really run the country. The elections were rigged. And most of the American media cheers along.

No, not the United States: Iran. The peace-loving, centrifuge-spinning, flag-burning regime has a new president, Ebrahim Raisi. The Biden administration did promise us a new era in US-Iranian relations, and here it is: Raisi will be the first Iranian president to take office while under sanctions for mass murder.

Over the weekend the Washington Post published a long backgrounder on Raisi by Reuel Marc Gerecht and Ray Takeyh of the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies and the Council on Foreign Relations, respctively. Their essay is published in the Post under the headline “In Ebrahim Raisi, Iran’s clerics have groomed and promoted their ruthless enforcer.” The Foundation for the Defense of Democracies has posted the opening of their essay in accessible form under the same heading here.

I urge interested readers not to miss either of these valuable contributions to understanding the regime, the problem, the threat.