Cranky, cranky

The exchange appeared to mark several firsts in Iranian politics—the first time an Iranian president has used a public forum to launch potentially criminal allegations about another official, especially incorporating incriminating documents, which is another rarity in Iranian politics. In a political culture that places much stock in public politeness, it was also appeared to be the first time a parliament speaker has levied insults and counteraccusations in the face of a sitting president.

The exchange suggests an erosion in the authority of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has the final word on all state matters. Mr. Khamenei has repeatedly warned rival political factions not to publicize their spats. In October, he said that anyone who creates divisions in the run-up to June presidential elections has committed treason.

It’s a little frightening to think of Ahmadinejad as more than just a puppet for Khamenei, as he seems to be the crazier of the two. On the other hand, it’s nice to know the psycho is cracking under pressure.

Pleasant place, that Iran, no?