2040 GMT: Ahmadinejad Watch. President Ahmadinejad has used the set-piece of a visit from Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki to put out the line of Tehran's close relations with Baghdad in a challenge to the West and Israel:
If Tehran and Baghdad are powerful and dignified, there will be no place in the region for the enemies of nations, including the US and the Zionist regime. “The hegemonic powers that have been slapped by the two nations are trying to keep countries like Iran and Iraq weak in order to bring the entire region under their domination and control by creating dissention and sowing discord.
2010 GMT: Spin Watch. An instructive story about how Iranian State media re-packages economic news to find the "positive"....
Earlier today (see 1257 GMT) we reported the finding of the International Monetary Fund that Iran's inflation rate in 2011 was twice that of other countries in the Middle East and North Africa.
Well, although that story was in Iran's Aftab News, you won't find it in Fars or State outlets IRNA and Press TV. Instead, IRNA features a message from Tehran to the IMF:
Iran as one of the co-founders of International Monetary Found expects a supportive role from this organization, Governor of the Central Bank of Iran (CBI) Mahmoud Bahmani said here on Friday.
Bahmani made the remark in a meeting with the IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde on the sidelines of semiannual meetings of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank in Washington.
Fars has almost the exact same story.
Now watch as today's Press TV, citing Fars, suddenly turns the story, "Iran Economic Reforms Positive, Constructive: IMF Chief":
Managing director of International Monetary Fund (IMF) says the economic reforms carried out by the Iranian government in recent years, especially the Subsidy Reform Plan, have been positive and constructive.
In a meeting with Governor of the Central Bank of Iran Mahmoud Bahmani on the sidelines of semiannual meetings of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank in Washington, Christine Lagarde expressed hope that Western sanctions against Iran's central bank would be lifted.
Lagarde also indicated her concern about the fluctuations in global oil prices and their impact on the world economic growth.
We can find no record anywhere of Lagarde making these alleged remarks.