12/21/2005 12:58 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

Happy Yalda, From One President To Another

Dear George,

Sorry about the lengthy greeting card, but there’s so much to mention this year! Firstly, a very Happy Yalda to you and yours. I know it’s a pagan Persian holiday, but if even I can enjoy it, so can you. It’s the longest night of the year, and boy, I understand it feels like the longest days of the year to you, but chin up, things will only get better! Second, a very Happy Christmas to you! I won’t be celebrating, but you have a good one!

Oh, and a Happy Hannukah to any of your staff who are Jewish. Do you have any Jews in your cabinet? I don’t. Of course there is that member of Iran’s parliament who is Jewish, but I don’t pay much attention to him. You will note, however, that he didn’t object to my calling for Israel’s destruction or my denying the holocaust. Neither did Tehran’s Chief Rabbi. Nor even the shopkeepers on Manouchehri Street, where I just bought my wife a new diamond ring! I wouldn’t tolerate criticism from Jews, mind you, but it’s nice they didn’t think it was necessary. My comments sure did put the reformists and liberals on the defensive though, didn’t they! Don’t worry; pretty soon I’ll have destroyed them completely.

Listen, I know you want Israel to be around for the rapture, so that all the Jews can die then, but I still think my plan is better. Move Israel to Germany and there’ll still be some Jews left in Palestine....if your rapture comes, then there’ll still be Jews, to say nothing of Muslims, who’ll die. But I have to tell you I think my Messiah, or twelfth Imam, is coming first. In which case I'm afraid the Christians might have to convert or die too. To each his own, right? (Either way the Jews die unless they convert? I should check with my Ayatollah.)

What a year it’s been! I can’t thank you enough for all the negative things you said about our elections here in the spring and summer. Calling them a sham was a real blessing for me; it really helped solidify my base amongst conservative Iranians who still hate U.S. foreign policy. And then all that stuff about me being a hostage taker and all that fuss about denying me a visa to attend the U.N.: sheer genius. Couldn’t have done more for my revolutionary credentials, and it sure helped me to portray those pansy reformists who want relations with the U.S. as your lackeys. Thanks!

Iraq, Iraq, Iraq! What a year there, huh? Thanks for sticking it out and killing as many Sunni bastards as your forces can. And destroying Sunni villages like Fallujah. Kill those heathen Sunnis all you like! Listen my friend: I know you’d prefer a secular Iraq (why? I thought you wanted a more religious U.S.), but I’m afraid that’s not going to fly. We’re in charge there, and secular we’re not. By the way, you haven’t met Ayatollah al-Sistani, have you? He’s Iranian, you know. I haven’t met him yet, but many of our officials have, unlike your officials, I think. It’s Shia-time in Iraq! (Can’t America be happy for Iran, just once?)

Sorry about all your troubles at home. Wiretapping, secret prisons, rendition, torture: when’s it going to end? Can I do anything to help? I thought the whole Israel/Holocaust thing was going to help you divert attention away from your other problems, but it seems that whatever I say your press still goes after you. Hint: try shutting down a paper or two: if you can get away with all the small illegal stuff you're doing, why not try some really tough tactics. Just say what we say in Iran: shutting the newspaper was in the interests of national security.

As I write this, my nuclear team is in Vienna meeting the Europeans. Don’t worry, they have instructions to be as difficult as possible. So next year, you can start dissing Iran-again, and maybe you can bang the war drums a bit louder now. That’ll help both of us. That sly Rafsanjani is after me, and pretty soon Iranians are going to be talking about “the good old days” under Khatami....sort of like Americans who talk about the “good old days” under Clinton. (Can you imagine if those two were still around? They'd probably be kissing each other by now!) We need some serious threats, George, and we need to raise the tension between our two countries, or neither one of us might survive our terms! Tell Karl to give me a call on the secure line. (He hasn’t returned my calls, by the way; is he okay?) And really, don’t fret too much about Iraq. After we’re both done killing some more Sunnis you can pull out. I’ll make sure the Iraqis give you something good to talk about. How about “peace with honor”? I know that was Nixon’s line, but it still sounds good. And we’ll make sure to keep the peace once you’re gone, trust me! (I am an ex-Revolutionary Guard, al-Qods force, or did you already know that?)

So, back to the holidays. I hear your Christmas card didn’t mention Christmas this year (I haven’t received mine yet, but mail from the U.S. can be slow). Well, as you can see, my card does. So Happy Christmas, Happy Yalda, and here’s to an even better year in 2006! I'm thinking I’ll revive the Salman Rushdie fatwa: he lives in your country now, right? What do you think?

Warmest regards,

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
President of the Islamic Republic of Iran