On the death of the Shah’s ex-envoy who became a strange admirer of revolutionary Iran

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Ardeshir Zahedi, former Iranian foreign minister and ambassador to the United States under the Pahlavi regime, died Thursday at the age of 93. in exile in Switzerland.

Zahedi was Tehran’s Ambassador to Washington from 1960 to 1962 and again from 1973 until the Islamic Revolution of 1979. He was also Iranian Minister of Foreign Affairs from 1966 to 1971. Zahedi was the son-in-law of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi and he was faithful until the last day of Shah’s life.

During his later years of life, Zahedi drew attention to his controversial positions and statements, including his criticism of the hostile US policies towards Iran. His glowing remarks on the legendary Iranian counterterrorism commander, Lieutenant-General Qassem Soleimani, also garnered media attention.

In an interview with BBC Farsi in April 2020, he congratulated General Soleimani, saying: “I am proud of him, I was proud of him and I will be proud of him … [soldiers] donate blood for their country. It is he who sacrificed his life for his country unlike those who sell themselves for money.

On January 3, 2019, US President Donald Trump directly ordered drone strikes that killed General Soleimani – who was in Baghdad on an official visit – and his Iraqi trenchmate Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the deputy commander of Hashd al. -Sha’abi of Iraq counterterrorism force.

He was a supporter of Iran’s nuclear program and called all sanctions imposed on Iran unfounded and contrary to international law.

Commenting on Washington’s regime change policy in Iran, Zahedi once said, “The United States is exerting economic and military pressure on Tehran because Iranian diplomats have put America and its allies, Israel and Arabia. Arabia, on your knees.

In another interview, Zahedi referred to Iran’s bright future and said, “I believe Iran’s future is very bright and what was in the past is over.

Referring to anti-revolutionary groups in Iran, he said: “Don’t kid yourself and don’t get financial aid from foreigners… It doesn’t matter who gives the money; Arabs, CIA or other foreigners… none of them will. help Iran and the Iranians achieve their goals.

“The social situation in Iran will undoubtedly change. I have a lot of hope and confidence in the Iranian youth, whose character, intelligence and competence will shape the future of the country, ”he said.

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