Like many a personal blog, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's "Personal memos" page has gradually lost steam since its debut in 2006. In 2007 the Iranian president posted just three times, down from 10 posts the previous year, and he has repeatedly apologized for his tardiness in responding to readers' letters (he says he has just 15 minutes per week of blogging time).
But at this point, besides a neat feature that allows readers to choose from five background colors, the most interesting thing about the Ahmadineblog is the comments section. Comments are apparently not screened, and, somewhat surprisingly given the president's infamous unfriendliness to dissenters, a few caustic attacks have been allowed to stand.
After the jump, a sample of comments (preceded by country of origin):
(Mexico) Juan Pablo lla Amador: "There are a very few leaders with the intelligence and courage to confront the zionism and the U.S. imperialism, my best wishes for you and all your people."
(USA) Jack Meyhoffer: "I hope someone puts a bullet in your head very soon."
(China) Frank Fu: "Like the title and thank you for your time and for your words of inspiration.I think in this way more and more Chinese will know you and your country better. Thank you very much!!"
(USA) Kevin: "You are the type of man that would start WW3. You say some pretty stupid things sometimes."
(India) ali khan auk: "His excellency, it gives me immense pleasure to visit your site and post my comments this fabulous blog of a leader of free world not only islamic world. i have been following the remarkable efforts that you are pursuing in bringing the world together and making it a more safe place to live"
(USA) Colby Brown: "God bless Iran, Bush and Isreal are unfair to Iran. I am sorry for the way you were treated at our university. All americans are not the same as Bush. Peace god bless Iran and the rest of the world!"
(China) Isis Wong: "I come to your blog just for a glance, its so liberal of you to think ou the idea of setting a blog. I didnt pay much attention to international politics before, but I find you a very intelligent and smart president~ Wish Iran and you all the best!"
(USA) ken mcfly: "die slow ..."
(Germany) John Walker: "nice blog, but you should be posting more often"
Despite the occasional vitriol, Ahmadinejad has written that he personally reads even those comments that "started with a sentence like 'I know that the president is not going to read this message, but
.'" Who says this guy can't be negotiated with?—Justin Elliott