Extended Democracy: Iran and Israel
It occurred to me to wonder how consistently the Iranians were willing to apply their principle. If the Palestinian diaspora gets to vote, how about the Jewish diaspora? If someone counts as a Palestinian even if he lives somewhere else, on the grounds that his parents, grandparents, or great grandparents were Palestinian, then do I count as a Palestinian on the grounds that my distant ancestors left Palestine about two thousand years ago?
A different point raised in the interview was that although President Ahmadinejad gets quite a lot of attention, he isn't actually in charge of the Iranian government. The Supreme Leader, currently Grand Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, is head of the armed forces, makes foreign policy, has the ultimate authority. The president is merely the executive head of government, implementing the will of the Supreme Leader.
The President is elected. The Supreme Leader is appointed by the Committee of experts, a body of clergymen elected from a government screened list. If the Iranian support for democracy is to be applied consistently to both Israel and Iran, there seem two possibilities:
1. Let the Supreme Leader be elected by majority vote of all Iranians, including Iranian expatriates and their adult descendants.
2. Put the supreme authority over the Israeli government in the hands of a leader selected from a suitably screened body of the Israeli rabbinate.
So far as I know, neither of these options has yet been proposed by President Ahmadinejad.