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Iranian President Hasan Rouhani speaks during the debate on the proposed Cabinet at the parliament, in Tehran, Iran, Thursday, Aug. 15, 2013.
Iranian President Hasan Rouhani speaks during the debate on the proposed Cabinet at the parliament, in Tehran, Iran, Thursday, Aug. 15, 2013.
(Ebrahim Noroozi/AP)

Dubowitz and Alfoneh

Iranian President's independence will be attacked from within

The election of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has created hope for a less belligerent Islamic Republic that will end Tehran’s nuclear intransigence and the brutal repression of Iran’s long-suffering people. To some, Mr. Rouhani is a “moderate” who should be lauded for his pragmatism as a former nuclear negotiator and for bringing a more temperate tone to the presidency after the bellicosity of his predecessor. To others, he is a “regime loyalist” and a “master of nuclear deception,” consistently mendacious in negotiating over nukes, and cold-blooded in his full-throttle support for Tehran’s involvement in Syria’s killing fields.