Tasnim news agency held a round table discussion with a number of critics on Wednesday to address the course of political affairs after the presidential election.
In this session Abbas Salimi Nami, Amir Mohebian, Abbas Abdi, and Parviz Amini provided comments on the issue from different angles.
Abbas Abdi believed that Rouhani was the only candidate that could really be called a politician.
Abdi said "In this election, out of the 6 candidates, the only one who could really be called a true politician was Rouhani. The others were not able to prove themselves as politicians. Some were diplomats, but being a politician in the domestic sphere takes a lot more than being a diplomat.”
Abdi also believed that Rouhani talked much like Khatami. He said "There was a kind of similarity with Khatami’s words. It gave a sort of assurance which the multiplicity of forces and people rather liked. Meanwhile, it lacked the philosophical aspect of Khatami. It was rather scientific and objective, which I believe was a positive point about him.”
He also said that more than 90 percent of the Iranians are currently concerned with economic problems such as inflation and unemployment. He said that the main obstacles to economic growth are political ones, both in domestic and foreign affairs. "I believe that in his speeches, Mr. Rouhani made more references to these two issues than anything else.”
Abbas Salimi Namin then said in turn that in the course of 2013 presidential elections the Reform movement was removed in favor of the Construction Party.
He believed that the disqualification of Hashemi greatly contributed to his status prior to the elections, which naturally lead to the Reform movement fading out.
He also said that the Principalist candidates miscalculated the circumstances by believing that the real opponent is one of themselves, neglecting the other side entirely.
Salimi Namin also believed that Ahmadinejad was an ally to the Reform movement in working against Qalibaf. He said "Ahmadinejad had managed to form a radical current indirectly. This current was the Resistance Front which mustered all its power to deface Qalibaf.”
He stated that while Ahmadinejad had outwardly implied to be supporting Jalili, some of those close to him voted for Rouhani in fact, only out of opposition to the Principalist side.
Amir Mohebian then expressed his views, saying that Jalili turned out to be a help to Rouhani. He said "If Rouhani and Qalibaf ran to the runoff or they would have been to compete only each other things would have been just like that. People would have seen both of them as pragmatists, that is, they held low degrees of idealism and no contrast would have existed between them.”
"Therefore a third party was needed, which turned out to be Jalili. The Resistance Front and parallel currents, or whoever it was that controlled the case, in fact created a figure which would give that formula to flight,” he continued.
He further believed that it was Hashemi who controlled the Reform movement in the 2013 elections by kindly asking Khatami to run for presidency. "Probably from his political experience, Mr. Hashemi could tell that if he was disqualified, there would arise a force which would be directed towards the one who was considered as an alternative for him.”
Parviz Amini also said that Jalili was a politically impotent figure. "He was not able to tap the ideological current and the fixed votes, he could only turn them into votes in the boxes, but was unable to turn them into a social current which would fill the country with his presence and mottos,” he said.
Amini also believed that one of the major strategic errors by the 2+1 coalition was their unchanging arrangement where Qalibaf was the chief representative. He also said that the coalition was further unable to give an image of itself against the social status quo.
He further asserted that it is politically rash to call Rouhani a Principalist. "When you say that the moderation has won the election, you are admitting that you are a radical current,” he said.