Just one week after a historic phone call between Iran’s new president, Hassan Rouhani, and Barack Obama, there were still Iranians chanting the customary “Death to America” and burning US and Israeli flags after Friday prayers in Tehran on October 4, 2013.
Still, some Iranians hope the call was a step towards thawing relations that could someday lead to US sanctions being lifted. Others are unhappy about any dialogue with “the Great Satan,” as the United States is most often referred to in Iran's official speeches.
As an indication that this topic also on President Rouhani's mind, he has reportedly asked two polling organizations to “find out” what Iranians think about USA-Iran relations. Meanwhile, netizens share their own ideas about the ongoing saga between the two countries.
One Iranian citizen uploaded a video of himself on YouTube, ironically suggesting that Rouhani add three extra questions to his survey:
- “How many people want the Islamic Republic regime?”
- “What do they think about social and political freedom?”
- “You [President Rouhani] said there was no fraud in the controversial 2009 presidential election, let's ask what Iranians think about it”
Zarebin writes [fa] in his blog that the survey will be engineered in whatever which way the Supreme Leader wants. If he wishes to improve the relationship with the USA, then the survey will reflect this. And if not, the survey will reflect that. “What a trap we are stuck in. Everything is the Leader's opinion with a survey to cover it up.”
To Talk or not to Talk
در هیچ رابطه ای عجله جایز نیست، حالا میخواد دیپلماتیک باشه یا غیر دیپلماتیک. #روحانی
— Firoozeh (@firoozehimany) September 27, 2013
In any relationship, whether diplomatic or non-diplomatic, we should not rush things.
Siding with the Islamic regime, blogger Khabrnegar1351 writes [fa] that Iran has become so powerful that the USA “looks to Iran as superpower” and “aims to improve relations with Tehran out of fear.”
َAnother blogger, Ahestan, reminds us of the anti-American teachings of Ayatollah Khomeini, the Islamic Republic's founder and says [fa], “The real winner of the Obama-Rouhani phone conversation is Obama.” This blogger says the main goal of the phone call was to show the millions of Muslims who follow the Imam [Khomeini's] teachings that Iran is willing to negotiate with “the Great Satan.”