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Unacceptable Behavior

January 25, 2010

Well, excuuuuuuuuuse Iran’s tourism minister!

Iran angrily denied reports on Thursday that its tourism minister shook hands with his Israeli counterpart at a reception in Spain, which would have violated Iran’s strict anti-Israeli policies.

An adviser to Stas Misezhnikov, the Israeli tourism minister, said the two ministers shook hands at a reception on Wednesday hosted by the king and queen of Spain. Only ministers and ambassadors were present at the meeting, said the adviser, Amnon Liebermann.

The Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization, which serves as Iran’s tourism ministry, issued a statement on Thursday dismissing that claim as an “ugly and false rumor,” adding that Iranian officials “never encountered Israeli officials in any form.” The statement added that Iran considered “the permanent struggle against this international pariah its divine duty.”

Yeah, no, let’s keep trying to negotiate with these guys.  I wish Katie Couric had asked Mahmoud Ahmadinejad questions that would have made that even more awkward than it already was.  Something like, “So, how do you feel about Jews in general?”  “Do you even know what your wife looks like—I mean, you’ve only seen that rag on her face for the past however-long-y’all-have-been-married.  Can you be sure it’s really her?”  “What’s your stance on spousal rape?”

None of our options on Iran are anything that we’d ever want to do, but there’s a good reason the phrase “non-negotiable” exists.  Would the country implode if their ambassador to Timor-Leste accidentally slept with a Jewish girl that he didn’t realize was Jewish?  Should that be our strategy?  Not a bad idea, if you ask me.

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