Saturday marked the beginning of the year 1400 on the Persian Calendar. Most Iranians are grappling with poverty in the new year. Instead of helping people, the regime’s president Hassan Rouhani made contradictory remarks in recent days.
“As we enter Nowruz 1400, not only is there no point of hope, but the expected inflation torments us. In all these years, people have always struggled with difficulties, and the [regime] has only praised them for resisting. Officials now face this question, that when would people have their share of peace and comfort? How long do people have to walk through hundreds of shops to buy oil? Really, how long do people have to stand in long queues for hours so that maybe it will be their turn to get poultry, not at a reasonable price, but at a price several times higher than the price they bought a month ago? How long is the people’s share of [the so-called] resistance supposed to be skyrocketing prices and empty tables? How long should salaries be below the poverty line?” wrote the state-run Tejarat daily on Thursday about the regime’s inaction and people’s crisis.
While people face skyrocketing prices, rising inflation, and scarcity of basic needs such as poultry, Rouhani claimed, “Some abuses and propaganda caused a shortage of goods and ultimately shock the price increase.”
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State-run media and officials from Rouhani’s faction rejected this bogus claim. “What Rouhani was saying was a kind of speech therapy. It was so artificial that even those around him did not believe it, let alone the people. For example, saying that next year we will no longer have the problem of the Covid-19 outbreak and that our economy will be back on its feet was like a joke. His entourage did not even believe him, let alone the people. Rouhani talks about the economy and in such a way that one thinks there are two societies; one that is in the real world and the other that is in the minds of Mr. Rouhani and his colleagues,” wrote the state-run Arman daily on March 18.
“Long queues [for purchasing basic needs such as poultry], skyrocketing prices and shortages of food items in the market and a few hundred percent increases in fruit prices are just some of what happened to Iranian families last year. While we are reaching the end of [the Persian] year, important economic indicators such as liquidity, inflation, and economic growth do not show promising figures. Despite the positive economic growth rate of 2.2%, the inflation and liquidity rate, by the end of February this year, have been 34.2 percent and 3300 thousand billion tomans, respectively. This could be a warning sign of rising inflation next year,” wrote the state-run Etemad daily on Thursday about Iran’s dire economic situation.
On Thursday, the state-run Arman published an interview with Amanollah Qaraie-Moghadam, one of the regime’s experts, further confirming the baselessness of Rouhani’s claims.
“The set of past and present events makes it possible to make an approximate prediction of the events and conditions of the people in 1400. Due to what happened in the last year, inflation and the skyrocketing prices removed the middle class. Now we only have the rich and poor classes in society. Some people spend 200 million tomans per meter for their homes, and others spend the night on rooftops. If inflation moves in the same direction, the poor class will also disappear. Before the Covid-19 outbreak, there was unemployment in our society, and there is no doubt that in 1400, the number of unemployed will increase. Unemployment brings with it all sorts of problems for society and causes significant growth of social harms,” Qaraie-Moghadam said.
He later warned the regime’s officials that “Social dissatisfaction will increase next year. As I look, I do not see a good outlook for next year. Next year we will face an increase in all kinds of social ills and turmoil in society.”
Thus, it becomes clear while despite seeing Iran’s dire economic conditions and people’s suffering, Rouhani resorts to speech therapy and refuses to address those problems. Rouhani and other regime officials know that all of the Iranian people’s problems are due to the regime’s wrong policies and economic mismanagement. Nevertheless, to quell the restive society, they resort to lies.