Seth Meyers Cheers Iranian Foreign Minister’s ‘Well-Done’ Response to Tom Cotton’s Tweets

During a segment about Twitter, NBC’s Late Night host Seth Meyers on Thursday night praised Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif’s reaction to series of tweets from Republican Senator Tom Cotton (Ark.) as “well-done” and admitting that he was “very impressed” with Zarif’s use of “reverse criticism.” 

Transitioning from talking about a social media manager for the NBA’s Houston Rockets being recently fired, Meyers set the scene by parroting the standard liberal line about the Iran letter: “Cotton is the Senator who penned an open letter to Iranian leaders in an attempt to derail President Obama's negotiations with them.”

The Late Night host then read one of Cotton’s four tweets: 

Giving his own spin on the tweet, Meyers proceeded to repeatedly mock the conservative lawmaker: 

Marched to die? Thank God he didn't use emojis for that. Also, nobody likes the numbered tweet. It makes you seem like someone leaving a crazy multi-part voicemail to an ex. “Hey, Karen, it's Steve again. The machine cut me off. Look, I never lied to you and –“ Beep. “Damn it!” [LAUGHTER]

As for how Zarif replied, Meyers lauded his conduct:

Zarif responded to Cotton the only way you should ever respond to a negative tweet. How? With reserve criticism followed by well wishes: “Serious diplomacy, not macho personal smear, is what we need. Congrats on Ur newborn, may U and Ur family enjoy him in peace.” [APPLAUSE] Very well-done. Very impressed. 

In conjunction with the other jokes in the segment, Meyers gave his idea for an appropriate Twitter emoji to summarize the situation with this one being “a peach that looks like a butt farting on a cloud that looks like cotton.”

The relevant portion of the transcript from NBC’s Late Night with Seth Meyers on May 1 can be found below.

NBC’s Late Night with Seth Meyers
May 1, 2015
12:44 a.m. Eastern

SETH MEYERS: But, Twitter isn't just used by sports teams, it's also used by senators, like Tom Cotton of Arkansas. A little background, Cotton is the Senator who penned an open letter to Iranian leaders in an attempt to derail President Obama's negotiations with them. On Wednesday, Javad Zarif, Iran's Foreign Minister, made a joke at Cotton’s expense while speaking to a crowd at NYU.

So Cotton took to Twitter, not with a joke response, but rather with a four part invitation to debate the Constitution that included, “I understand if you decline...after all, in your 20s, you hid in the U.S. during Iran-Iraq war while peasants and kids were marched to die.” Marched to die? Thank God he didn't use emojis for that. Also, nobody likes the numbered tweet. It makes you seem like someone leaving a crazy multi-part voicemail to an ex. “Hey, Karen, it's Steve again. The machine cut me off. Look, I never lied to you and –“ Beep. “Damn it!” [LAUGHTER]

Zarif responded to Cotton the only way you should ever respond to a negative tweet. How? With reserve criticism followed by well wishes: “Serious diplomacy, not macho personal smear, is what we need. Congrats on Ur newborn, may U and Ur family enjoy him in peace.” [APPLAUSE] Very well-done. Very impressed. Of course, I would have gone with a peach that looks like a butt farting on a cloud that looks like cotton. [LAUGHTER]

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