It is Tehran’s hardline clerics who are endangering the nation, not innocents languishing in the nation’s jails
Iran’s merciless persecution of Nazanin Zaghari‑Ratcliffe, the Iranian-British woman held in Tehran’s Evin prison on spurious charges of spying, is deeply disturbing. What possible purpose was served by the airing this week on state television of a video showing her arrest in April 2016, as she prepared to board a plane to London?
When accosted by security men, Zaghari-Ratcliffe does not for a moment act guilty. She is not concealing anything. She does not try to run away. She looked then like the person she still is today: frightened, alarmed, uncomprehending and, above all, innocent. Showing this video was the regime’s latest, pathetic effort to justify the unjustifiable.
It’s plain that the supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, though old, ailing and underqualified, still casts a reactionary shadow over the regime’s external dealings