SECOND THOUGHTS

Iran Leader Wants Fair Trail for Saberi

Why couldn't President Ahmadinejad have spoken up before Roxana Saberi's case was closed? In a surprising letter to Tehran's prosecutor, the Iranian president has requested the American journalist convicted of spying "be given her legal right to defend herself." The letter comes the day after Saberi's conviction, which was rushed through in a closed-door trial that lasted all of one day. The BBC reports the letter may indicate that hard-liners within Iran hijacked the trial. It is unclear whether Ahmadinejad is referring to a specific injustice in the trial or if he is making a broader statement about fairness in trials receiving international attention.