In the recent days, the Iranian regime mouthpiece Kayhan has devoted several editorials to explaining to the Iranian public why the coronavirus pandemic has befallen the world and the lessons that the world should derive from it. In an April 6, 2020 editorial the daily postulated that the coronavirus is a product of the godless Western civilization, which takes pride in science for its own sake and which also created the atom bomb and chemical weapons. Like senior regime officials, this editorial accused the U.S. and Israel of manufacturing and spreading the coronavirus throughout the world "in order to rid it of the elderly and the poor." The pandemic, it added, exposes the wrongs that Western civilization has caused humanity, wrongs were perpetuated in order to preserve the superiority of Western civilization and culture while consigning Islamic civilization to obscurity. According to Kayhan, the coronavirus also exposes the inferiority of Western civilization and its leadership versus the superiority of Iran, which offers mankind the Islamic civilization and a new world order. The editorial praised the mobilization and solidarity of Iran's society and political and military leadership in fighting the disease, while contrasting it with the West, which is said is collapsing as its leaders resort to spreading lies and to stealing from each other in their desperate effort to control the pandemic. The editorial reiterated the Iranian regime's messaging of denying the Jewish Holocaust, which "has no basis," while calling America "the Great Satan" and Israel is a "malignant growth."
Unlike the April 6, 2020 editorial, which accused the U.S. and Israel of creating and spreading the virus, an April 13, 2020 editorial by Kayhan's editor-in-chief Hossein Shariatmadari stated that
the virus was sent by God to humiliate the leaders of corrupt and enervated Western civilization and prove to mankind that it has no succor save for God. Like the April 6 editorial, this article, titled "The Coronavirus, the Virus with a Crown," claimed that the coronavirus exposes the hollowness and collapse of Western civilization, versus the superiority of Islamic civilization, which Iran promotes via the values of self-sacrifice and spiritual morality displayed by its leaders and citizens.
The following are excerpts from the two editorials.
Kayhan, April 6: "This Pandemic Bears The Stench Of Faithless Science And Of A Godless, Arrogant World – Yet It Is The Postmodern West That Has Collapsed!"
Kayhan's April 6, 2020 editorial stated: "...We who believe in the pure Islam possess diverse, unending riches, and without this infinite treasure, we too would be oppressed and corrupted by problems. What protects us from the storm of events is the study [of Islam], which calms our hearts and eases our minds, and which gives us the hope to try harder...
"The world's entire population has been afflicted by this pandemic, and its strength has been exhausted… This pandemic bears the stench of faithless science and of a godless, arrogant world – yet it is the postmodern West that has collapsed! The very same godless science that invented the atom bomb, chemical [weapons], mustard [gas], the SARS [virus], and Stuxnet [the computer virus that targeted Iran], etc. is now inflicting the coronavirus upon humanity. This is the same secular science that does not believe in God. Science which covers up ignorance without aiming to improve the quality of life is a merchant of death and [serves] Satan. The West-struck ones [i.e., people blinded by the West] lied when they promoted science for science’s sake and art for art's sake, and sold science and art to Pharaoh, Korah, and Zion before [they sold it to] us. The West-struck ones and their supporters, who described the ordinary [achievements] of the West as 'civilization' and the 'cradle of science,' considered the wizards and warlocks of the White House as roses and magic in Trump's decrepit body – like the wizards of Pharaoh's court.
Mourners at grave of coronavirus victim in the city of Qom (source: khordadnews.ir, March 15, 2020)
"The unspoken truth of history tells us a lot more than what was spoken and written. We must recognize the most important events in history from what is unspoken, and not from what is spoken. They [Westerners] wanted what was spoken and wrote it down [in history books], but they either didn’t know or didn’t want to write down that which was unspoken. They limited Iran’s vast history of some six millennia to 2,500 years. We were told nothing about the connection between the Purim celebrations and us Iranians. We were not told that in the ninth century, while the Muslims gave the king of France the gift of a clock, Europeans were buying and selling human flesh alongside animal flesh in their various markets. We were also not told about the genocide of nine million Iranians at the hands of the English 100 years ago. Moreover, we were not told that the Holocaust of the Jews has no basis, nor that tens of thousands of Muslims were murdered in Bosnia and Srebrenica in the heart of Europe 25 years ago, and so on. We do not look at many other important historical periods and events, because history was written by Westerners or by the West-struck, and there was little opportunity for free scholars [to write history.]
"Today, the coronavirus has [deprived] the West-struck liars of the chance to distort and counterfeit reality, and has given the current generation the opportunity to see it. America, that claimed that it could wipe everyone out with a push of a button, now has its medical teams wearing single-use masks for five days, and instead of [protective] gear, they wear trash bags. The fearful [American] people are purchasing weapons in order to stay alive and are emptying the stores of their merchandise! People with Down's syndrome and the elderly are left without medical care, and doctors are calling the state of American hospitals 'hellish.'
"In England, policemen were sent to protect toilet paper, and the queen fled to a safer location. In addition, different European countries have decreed a six-month jail sentence to those who violate quarantine, in addition to fines amounting to 1,000 pounds and 10,000 Euro.
"[French President Emmanuel] Macron announced that France is in a state of war. According to [American linguist Noam] Chomsky, it is strange for this civilization that Germany cannot help Europe, but Cuba can. The armies of Italy and Spain are collecting the bodies of those who died [of the coronavirus] in trucks, while Israel would only allow medical aid to be released to the Palestinians if [the Palestinians] released [Israeli] hostages, and so on. All this is in addition to the grave charge that the virus was created and cultivated in America and Israel in order to limit [the numbers of] humankind and rid it of the elderly and the poor, or to combat their enemies, or for any other Satanic reason, and there is no greater malice than the coronavirus. God says of such people: 'And when he goes away, [he strives throughout the land to cause corruption therein and destroy crops and animals.' Quran 2:205]. Today, even as the arrogant [American] and reactionary [Saudi] media turn their back on truth and reality, their eyes remain fixed on Iran, and they are being paid to spread lies and slander about us and our friends in cyberspace, and we must hope that the public knows it must see the truth clearly, rather than its opposite. [The public] sees that certain 'business partners' [of Iran's] refuse to ease or remove their sanctions during these difficult times, and take no action to make good on their promises. And, conversely, [it sees that] those who need to see to their [own problems] themselves arrogantly offer aid to Iran only on the condition that certain requests be fulfilled, and, failing [that], use deceit and infiltration to send the spies known as Doctors Without Borders to decipher the secret to Iran's resistance and success.
"If the Imam [Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini] said we [Iran] must be independent and that America is the 'Great Satan' but also a 'paper tiger,' and that Israel is a 'cancerous growth,' it was surely for this reason. And if the current Imam [Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei] says the solution for Iran's problems is internal, that Iran must become stronger and not rely on Europe and American, it was for this reason. And if… [there are those in Iran] who have extended their hand [to Europe and America], they should count their fingers to make certain they are all still there, because the leader of the tribe [i.e. President Trump] is a thief. They [the Americans even] stole a plane carrying masks. Yet, unfortunately, Iran is full of wounds [caused by] traitors and infiltrators, stubborn and ignorant, who have infiltrated [the country] and who cause greater pain than the pain that the coronavirus cough and headache cause the enemy.
"God will not forgive those who humiliate their own people before their enemies. The result of trusting the enemy is humiliation, and the [secret] to empowerment is independence. Although in the current situation there are still some who seek comfort from the enemies and their agents, in this context, the Iranian heroes must be praised... If [IRGC Qods Force commander Gen.] Qassem Soleimani were alive today, he would see the people [who wage] our campaign: Our scientists invented a kit for diagnosing the coronavirus as well as artificial intelligence that can diagnose the coronavirus; Iran's military built a hospital with 2,000 beds in 48 hours; and the IRGC is disinfecting streets and neighborhoods of contamination of the disease. The Basij members are surveying the health of 70 million civilians, and religion students, merchants and citizens are all fighting, and the streets and alleys smell like a battlefront.
"As the cowardly [American] gentlemen who murdered [Gen. Soleimani] at Baghdad airport sit behind a desk, stealing each other's cargo and begging for aid from Korea and China, our people in Iran are manufacturing and distributing masks and protective gear. Our people are combating the coronavirus with dignity and from a place of power... With God's help, we will soon defeat the coronavirus and move closer to a new world order."
Kayhan, April 13: "The Virus Has Humiliated The Oppressive Leaders Of The West Who [Once Trumpeted] 'I Am Your Supreme Master' – And Has Challenged And Put To Shame Their Claims Of Modern Administration"
The following are the main points of Kayhan's April 13, 2020 editorial, "Coronavirus – The Virus With A Crown," by Kayhan editor-in-chief Hossein Shariatmadari:
"The coronavirus comes from the word 'crown' because it looks like the crown of kings! With such a resemblance, the coronavirus can be called 'the king of viruses'! And of course, the 'Virus King' is much like other monarchs: irritating, destructive, tyrannical... The coronavirus is millions of times smaller than the mosquito that killed Nimrod.
Disinfecting the Fatima Masumeh Shrine in the city of Qom (source: asriran.com, March 15, 2020)
"This virus, infinitely small, has created an immeasurably large reality. In only a few weeks, it has thrown the world off course. It has turned cities into ghost towns, banned public gatherings, restricted the people of the world to their homes, stopped all places of business, and completely disrupted train, vehicle, and airplane [traffic]. At the same time, it has humiliated the oppressive leaders of the West who [once trumpeted] 'I am your supreme master,' challenging and putting to shame their claims of modern administration, posing a difficult, breathtaking test to supposedly great civilizations, completely changing peoples' lifestyles, [and] frightening people of every nation and race...
"The coronavirus has shown people mired in the material world that there is no refuge but the merciful God. All nations, regardless of religion, are praying to God for help. Those who expelled God from their lives, even if not necessarily denying His existence, are now coming to their senses and calling on God to have mercy on them...
"Shortly after the coronavirus arrived in America, short-haul [flights] were disrupted countrywide. [There is] an incredible shortage of basic supplies for fighting the coronavirus, such as masks, gloves, protective gear, hospital beds, ICU capacity, and even toilet paper... [The virus] has paralyzed the American healthcare system, and now the situation requires the U.S. administration to seek aid from other countries. Alongside other Western countries in severe distress like America, they started stealing each other’s medical cargo...
"The British Guardian mocked Trump's arrogance, writing: ‘Trump said that, from this day forward, a new vision will govern our land. From this moment on, it’s going to be America First. But now America is first in another sense, [it is first] in the number of people infected by the coronavirus!... Yesterday [President] Trump announced a state of emergency called 'the great disaster' due to the spread of the coronavirus and the inability to fight it across the 50 states. He expressed sorrow, and noted, because of the situation, which is unprecedented in the history of the America, that ‘the coronavirus has shut down the American economy...’
"The point that cannot and must not be ignored is that it is as if God has challenged the hollow, atrophied civilization of the West so as to reveal its hollowness to the people of the world – while also showing to the eyes and hearts of the nations the humane and life-affirming view of Islamic civilization. A brief glance at the self-sacrifice, the empathy, and the spiritual morality of the people and officials on this side of the story, and a comparison of this with the other side of the story, [that is, with] the leaders of the West, stands as a perfect example and proof of the difference between Islamic civilization and the contemptible Western civilization."
 See e.g., MEMRI Special Dispatch No. 8658, IRGC Cyber Division Confirms Supreme Leader Khamenei's Assertion That 'Demons Are Assisting The Enemies' With Statements That 'The Israeli Mossad Is... Using Demons' And 'The Jews Are Experts At Sorcery And At Creating Relationships With Demons', March 26, 2020; Special Dispatch No. 7873, IRGC Gen. Gholamreza Jalali, Head of Iran's Civil Defense Organization: Coronavirus Has Many of the Characteristics of a Biological Weapon; The U.S. Has Many Biological Labs in the Area That May Be Responsible for Spreading the Virus, March 10, 2020.
 A reference of the Jews’ killing of 75,000 of their enemies described in the Book of Esther.
 Kayhan (Iran), April 6, 2020.
 According to Arab tradition, Nimrod was the great-grandson of Noah, a hero and a gifted hunter, who boasted that he could overcome all creatures and was punished by Allah's insertion of a mosquito into his brain, driving him mad.
 Kayhan (Iran), April 13, 2020.