HBO’s Chernobyl has scared the crap out of everyone — including Iran. As Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty points out, an advisor to President Hassan Rohani has praised the five-part miniseries for carrying lessons for political leaders across the world.
Said advisor is Hesamedin Ashena, who also heads the country’s Center For Strategic Studies. Earlier this week, he referenced the series by tweeting, “What is the cost of lies?” He stressed it’s a “mind-boggling question” for “those in politics and government.”
For context, the miniseries tells the story of the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster, specifically the terrifying meltdown of the titular facilities, the thousands who sacrificed their lives to contain it, and Russia’s attempts to cover up the chaos from its citizens.
That coverup isn’t lost on the series’ Iranian viewers, who have since stirred up a debate on social media for their own safety. One Iranian physician tweeted, “If this happens in Iran, would our health system be ready to handle so many irradiated patients?”
To date, the Iranian government has insisted that their facilities don’t pose a threat. However, as Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty notes, one Iranian health official went on record in 2012 to say multiple accidents have been consistently covered up.
So, whether Ashena is posturing is up for debate. At the very least, his reaction to the miniseries is certainly a step up from Russia’s, whose own NTV will soon offer up their own counter-programming that lays blame to, you guessed it, America.
Chernobyl is currently available on HBO. Watch the trailer below.