During the past month, President Ahmadinejead has launched a vigorous campaign against Iranian women for improper dress, known as “bad hijab.” In so doing, he has empowered the religious police to harass and badger Iranian women because their “hair is showing” or the buttons on their dress are too tight resulting in outsiders being able to ascertain their body shape.
But, alas, everything has now backfired on the conservative president. Mr. Ahmadinejad was attending a ceremony honoring the nation’s teachers when much to his surprise he noticed his old first-grade teacher in the crowd. She was wearing a long coat and had on a headscarf. With the aid of a cane, she stumbled up to the president where he gave her a kiss. But, then came the great act of indecency, he lowered his head and kissed her hand.
A conservative newspaper accused the President of “indecency,” arguing the act of kissing his teacher’s hand was contrary to sharia law which, theoretically, forbids a man to have any physical contact with a women to whom he is not related. “This type of indecency progressively has grave consequences, like violating religious and sacred values,” seethed the headline of Hizbollah on its front page. “The Muslim Iranian people have no recollection of such acts contrary to sharia law during Islamic rule.”
Information from The Independent, England
There is no question, Ahmadinejad has been playing the “dress question” in an effort to win back public support after his failures to revitalize the economy or reduce unemployment. He hoped to stir up enthusiasm among his conservative followers by taking a tough stand against the outrageous behavior of some Iranian women who actually allow strands of hair to be visible. It has backfired. To make matters worse, the Iranian foreign minister attended a conference where there was an attempt to reduce American-Iranian hostility by placing him near Condi Rice. The entire attempt blew up when a violinist in a red dress was playing the violin with bare arms. The foreign minister made a hasty exist.