Defiant Ahmadinejad Blasts US, UN
In lengthy interview, Iranian Prez gives his opinions on Obama, Iraq, Europe
By Katherine Thompson,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 12, 2009 10:01 AM CDT
In this Nov. 17, 2007 file photo, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad speaks during a press conference at Gudaibiya Palace in Manama, Bahrain.    (AP Photo/Hasan Jamali, File)
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(Newser) – The diminutive leader of Iran has a big ego and is a big talker: in a lengthy interview with Der Spiegel, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad talked a lot—about his feelings for President Obama, his beef with Iraq, and other international issues—but in the end, avoided answering many of the reporter's questions. He did manage to take some shots at the US and the UN and reiterate his resistance to iran's halting work with nuclear materials. Among the high points:

  • "Great things are happening in the United States," he says—but also complains that new policies are merely "changes in the choice of language."
  • While praising himself for taking the "huge step" of writing to Obama, Ahmadinejad says, "Iran did not play a role in the development of this problem" of failed relations with the US.
  • Asked about his own and George W. Bush's influence on their respective countries' reputations, he responded: "I agree that our reputation with the American government and some European governments is not positive. But that's their problem. All peoples are fed up with the American government."