TEHRAN – The global reaction to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s announcement that he would like to be his nation’s first astronaut has been largely derisive, with many in the international community mocking the president for his childish aspiration. But in recent weeks, more and more of the president’s enemies have sought out the person who may be most responsible, the kindly schoolmarm Ms. Behrokh Mahmoudieh, who reportedly encouraged a five-year-old Ahmadinejad to “follow his dreams” more than 50 years ago.
“Oh, I always told all of my students that if they worked hard, one day they might be a professional racecar driver, or an astronaut, or even the president,” said Mahmoudieh in a statement yesterday afternoon. “And yes, I am ashamed to admit, I even said this to little Mahmoud,” she added. When asked if she felt culpable for Ahmadinejad’s disastrous presidency, she responded by trying to send the Reuters photographer to the principal’s office.
Thousands of angry Iranian citizens have begun marching on Tehran, demanding that Behrokh Mahmoudieh step down from her position at Oak Crest Tajoud Elementary School. The Iranian Space Agency has made similar demands, asking her – out of earshot of the President – if she knows what kind of disastrous extraterrestrial expedition she has wrought on the nation.
Before she could be reached to comment on more recent developments, Mahmoudieh was assassinated by a balaclava-clad gunman on a Suzuki motorcycle, an act for which the Israeli government has denied any responsibility.