As various countries continue to wage strategic and ideological battles around the world, many have turned to the Internet to further their cause. Case in point: the fake LinkedIn profile that Israel set up for Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.
According to the Daily Beast, the Israeli embassy in Washington tweeted a link to a picture of the profile on Monday evening. The parody page lists Rouhani as “President of Iran, Expert Salesman, PR Professional and Nuclear Proliferation Advocate.”
“I’m a career politician, expert public relations professional, leading international salesman and longtime advocate of nuclear proliferation,” the bio reads.
“Since my election as President of Iran in 2013, I developed and executed an unprecedented PR campaign for the government of Iran,” the bio continues. “Through a series of statements, tweets, op-eds and smiles I have re-branded the human rights suppressing Ayatollah led regime as moderate and a source of hope among the international community.”
Under the skills and expertise section, it reads “engaging public speaker,” “deceptive trade practices,” “weapons of mass destruction,” “nuclear weapons,” “military justice,” “ballistics,” “missile” and “public relations,” among other things.
Noam Katz, the Israeli embassy’s minister of public diplomacy, told the Daily Beast he was behind the profile. “LinkedIn was our way to highlight Rouhani’s long history in Iranian politics and his true position as the leading PR face for the regime that the public is largely unaware of on a platform they’re familiar with,” he said.
The scathing parody comes at an inopportune time for Rouhani. As the New York Post points out, the profile appeared just hours before the Iranian president was due to make his address before the United Nations General Assembly.
According to CNN, Rouhani indicated during his speech that Iran is ready to come to the table for nuclear talks. "Nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction have no place in Iran's security and defense doctrine, and contradict our fundamental religious and ethical convictions," Rouhani said at the UN General Assembly.
“Iran poses absolutely no threat to the world or the region,” Rouhani added.
Some, however, are not convinced. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu instructed his delegates to walk out during Rouhani’s speech, the Washington Post reports.