Monday, September 22, 2008

Stop Lying!

Nateq-Nouri’s Criticism against the Administration:


By:Alborz Mahmoudi

Ali Akbar Nateq-Nouri, head of Supreme Leader’s Audit Office, blasted on Saturday ‎those who purport to communicate with or know of the time of return of Imam Zaman, ‎the twelfth Shia Imam currently in occultation, calling them liars. The remarks were ‎made despite Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s repeated claims in various speeches that his ‎administration is guided by “Imam Zaman.” On at least one occasion, Ahmadinejad has ‎claimed that the time for Imam Zaman’s return is near. ‎

Imam Zaman is the twelfth Shia Imam. According to Shia theology, he is in occultation ‎like the Messiah, and will return at “the end of time” to reform the earth. In his critical ‎remarks, uttered at Ayatollah Khomeini’s burial site, Ali Akbar Nateq-Nouri said, ‎‎“Anyone who says I know when Imam Zaman is returning is lying, and anyone who ‎claims to be communicating or know that Imam Zaman is returning in near future days or ‎years is talking nonsense. Then it is mentioned that some are falsely claiming to have ‎seen or communicated with Imam Zaman. Anyone who claims that I have seen Imam ‎Zaman or communicate with him and he has given me messages is a liar.” ‎

This prominent conservative figure who had previously criticized the Ahmadinejad ‎Administration’s economic policies, reserved the last part of his speech for more pointed ‎criticism of the ninth administration’s religious claims, noting, “There is no doubt that ‎this country is the country of Imam Zaman, a Shia country that is a Islamic Republic and ‎governed based on Islamic principles; but that does not mean that everything we do is ‎coming from him [Imam Zaman]. Why are we spending on Imam Zaman’s behalf?” ‎

In an implicit reference to Ahmadinejad’s remarks earlier noting “Imam Zaman’s ‎management” of the country’s affairs, Nateq-Nouri said, “When our actions are carried ‎out in Imam Zaman’s name, people say that perhaps he would manage things the same ‎way when he returns; therefore this is better. I take this issue to be very dangerous.” ‎

Nateq-Nouri’s criticism of the ninth administration’s religious ideas on Saturday is ‎publicized despite the fact that, ever since coming to power, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has ‎touted “speeding up Imam Zama’s return” as the political agenda of his administration. ‎Nonetheless, serious rifts emerged between him and major Islamic jurists last spring ‎when, at a speech in Mashhad, Ahmadinejad promised that he “sees Imam Zaman’s hand ‎in all affairs.” He even attributed his “successful” appearance at Columbia University – ‎despite “obstacles” manufactured by American politicians - to Imam Zaman’s help and ‎claimed that 500 million people watched his speech on television. ‎

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