Khamenei Schadenfreudes All Over the U.S. for Ferguson Protests

The supreme leader of Iran, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, rarely skips an opportunity to bash the United States. The tense standoff in Ferguson, Missouri, is giving him a new chance to engage in some very serious Twitter schadenfreude. In the days since 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot dead by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson, the Twitterverse ...

-/AFP/Getty Images
-/AFP/Getty Images
-/AFP/Getty Images

The supreme leader of Iran, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, rarely skips an opportunity to bash the United States. The tense standoff in Ferguson, Missouri, is giving him a new chance to engage in some very serious Twitter schadenfreude.

In the days since 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot dead by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson, the Twitterverse has been full of eye-opening photos and videos of unarmed protesters squaring off against heavily-armed police equipped with sniper rifles and armored vehicles that seem better suited for Afghanistan than for a small Missouri town. Khamenei -- or whoever runs his English-language Twitter account -- has clearly taken notice.

 

The supreme leader of Iran, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, rarely skips an opportunity to bash the United States. The tense standoff in Ferguson, Missouri, is giving him a new chance to engage in some very serious Twitter schadenfreude.

In the days since 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot dead by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson, the Twitterverse has been full of eye-opening photos and videos of unarmed protesters squaring off against heavily-armed police equipped with sniper rifles and armored vehicles that seem better suited for Afghanistan than for a small Missouri town. Khamenei — or whoever runs his English-language Twitter account — has clearly taken notice.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Khamenei isn’t the only critic of America reveling in the images from Ferguson. For instance, the Russian media have used the arrests of two reporters to accuse the U.S. of double-standards on press freedom, in effect turning a common American critique of the government of Russian strongman Vladimir Putin on its head. Palestinians have pointed to the similarities between the events in Ferguson and their own clashes with Israeli security forces, and have even shared some practical tips about how to deal with tear gas.

Reid Standish is an Alfa fellow and Foreign Policy’s special correspondent covering Russia and Eurasia. He was formerly an associate editor. Twitter: @reidstan

More from Foreign Policy

A Panzerhaubitze 2000 tank howitzer fires during a mission in Ukraine’s Donetsk region.
A Panzerhaubitze 2000 tank howitzer fires during a mission in Ukraine’s Donetsk region.

Lessons for the Next War

Twelve experts weigh in on how to prevent, deter, and—if necessary—fight the next conflict.

An illustration showing a torn Russian flag and Russian President Vladimir Putin.
An illustration showing a torn Russian flag and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

It’s High Time to Prepare for Russia’s Collapse

Not planning for the possibility of disintegration betrays a dangerous lack of imagination.

An unexploded tail section of a cluster bomb is seen in Ukraine.
An unexploded tail section of a cluster bomb is seen in Ukraine.

Turkey Is Sending Cold War-Era Cluster Bombs to Ukraine

The artillery-fired cluster munitions could be lethal to Russian troops—and Ukrainian civilians.

A joint session of Congress meets to count the Electoral College vote from the 2008 presidential election the House Chamber in the U.S. Capitol  January 8, 2009 in Washington.
A joint session of Congress meets to count the Electoral College vote from the 2008 presidential election the House Chamber in the U.S. Capitol January 8, 2009 in Washington.

Congrats, You’re a Member of Congress. Now Listen Up.

Some brief foreign-policy advice for the newest members of the U.S. legislature.