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Iranian Alert -- January 10, 2004 -- IRAN LIVE THREAD --Americans for Regime Change in Iran
The Iranian Student Movement Up To The Minute Reports ^ | 1.10.2004 | DoctorZin

Posted on 01/10/2004 12:01:17 AM PST by DoctorZIn

The US media almost entirely ignores news regarding the Islamic Republic of Iran. As Tony Snow of the Fox News Network has put it, “this is probably the most under-reported news story of the year.” But most American’s are unaware that the Islamic Republic of Iran is NOT supported by the masses of Iranians today. Modern Iranians are among the most pro-American in the Middle East.

There is a popular revolt against the Iranian regime brewing in Iran today. Starting June 10th of this year, Iranians have begun taking to the streets to express their desire for a regime change. Most want to replace the regime with a secular democracy. Many even want the US to over throw their government.

The regime is working hard to keep the news about the protest movement in Iran from being reported. Unfortunately, the regime has successfully prohibited western news reporters from covering the demonstrations. The voices of discontent within Iran are sometime murdered, more often imprisoned. Still the people continue to take to the streets to demonstrate against the regime.

In support of this revolt, Iranians in America have been broadcasting news stories by satellite into Iran. This 21st century news link has greatly encouraged these protests. The regime has been attempting to jam the signals, and locate the satellite dishes. Still the people violate the law and listen to these broadcasts. Iranians also use the Internet and the regime attempts to block their access to news against the regime. In spite of this, many Iranians inside of Iran read these posts daily to keep informed of the events in their own country.

This daily thread contains nearly all of the English news reports on Iran. It is thorough. If you follow this thread you will witness, I believe, the transformation of a nation. This daily thread provides a central place where those interested in the events in Iran can find the best news and commentary. The news stories and commentary will from time to time include material from the regime itself. But if you read the post you will discover for yourself, the real story of what is occurring in Iran and its effects on the war on terror.

I am not of Iranian heritage. I am an American committed to supporting the efforts of those in Iran seeking to replace their government with a secular democracy. I am in contact with leaders of the Iranian community here in the United States and in Iran itself.

If you read the daily posts you will gain a better understanding of the US war on terrorism, the Middle East and why we need to support a change of regime in Iran. Feel free to ask your questions and post news stories you discover in the weeks to come.

If all goes well Iran will be free soon and I am convinced become a major ally in the war on terrorism. The regime will fall. Iran will be free. It is just a matter of time.


TOPICS: Extended News; Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: iaea; iran; iranianalert; iranquake; protests; southasia; studentmovement; studentprotest
Join Us At Today's Iranian Alert Thread – The Most Underreported Story Of The Year!

"If you want on or off this Iran ping list, Freepmail DoctorZin”

1 posted on 01/10/2004 12:01:19 AM PST by DoctorZIn
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2 posted on 01/10/2004 12:01:57 AM PST by Support Free Republic (Hi Mom! Hi Dad!)
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To: Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; McGavin999; Hinoki Cypress; ...
Join Us At Today's Iranian Alert Thread – The Most Underreported Story Of The Year!

"If you want on or off this Iran ping list, Freepmail DoctorZin”

3 posted on 01/10/2004 12:03:55 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: Support Free Republic
The actors in House of Sand and Fog infuse this story of a real-estate war over an auctioned house with a seismic power that goes beyond the writing and the imagery. When your mind objects to the rigging of the plot and a climactic avalanche of melodrama, the performers' intensity and passion still cut you to the quick.

Ben Kingsley plays an immigrant Iranian who was a high-level air force officer in the Shah's regime. In order to support his family in an aptly regal manner, he's been working on a road crew during the day and at a convenience store at night, hiding his employment from the San Francisco Bay Area's upper-crust Iranian enclave.

At the movie's start, he sees the chance to replenish his coffers: He buys, at county auction, a bungalow in a fog-shrouded coastal suburb. He swiftly improves it and prepares to sell it off at more than four times his cost. The problem is, the county had seized the house by mistake. Were it not for the erroneous assessment of a home business tax, the bungalow would indisputably belong to a newly single woman (Jennifer Connelly), who inherited it from her father. But she's a recovering addict who's such an emotional wreck that she's been tossing out tax notices without reading them. Before her lawyer can prevent him, Kingsley makes the property his own.

The high intentions of the original novelist, Andre Dubus III, and the director, Vadim Perelman (who co-wrote the script with Shawn Lawrence Otto), stick out all over all the place. In the book, the anti-heroine constantly refers to Kingsley's character as an Arab; actually, he's Persian. Yet the fight over territory where two people insist on equal ownership and rights inevitably evokes the tensions of the Middle East. And with Kingsley trying to work his new country's system for everything he can get and Connelly as a marginal figure who too easily drops out of that system, House of Sand and Fog also means to uncover the nightmare fringes of the American Dream.

What makes the movie potent, though, has nothing to do with metaphor or parable. It's that the story provides Connelly, Kingsley and Shohreh Aghdashloo as Kingsley's wife with all the tools they need to resurrect, flesh out, revamp and criticize outmoded male and female roles. Connelly turns her forlorn flake into a new-millennium damsel in distress with a bit of femme fatale mixed in. She's a woman who grew up with the idea of liberation but doesn't have the inner resources to make it on her own.

Connelly delivers the film's most daring performance. Unlike those Hollywood flavors of the month who sneak their own glamorous highlights into the most downtrodden characters, Connelly brings out all the shadows and languor of her usually glowing beauty. She creates a woman who insists on her worth even when the sole weapons she can muster against the Iranian are shame and embarrassment.

Her tragedy is that when a married deputy sheriff (Ron Eldard) woos and offers to help her, she gives in too easily to his wants and her romantic fantasies. He aims to be the man in uniform who comes to the rescue. But he's too sloppy and needy - and love makes him reckless. The outcome recalls Nelson Algren's advice, "Never, never, no matter what else you do in your whole life, never sleep with anyone whose troubles are worse than your own."

Ironically, Kingsley is the man in uniform who comes to the rescue, but only for his own family - and only for a while. I think that for this story, the real value of his Persian rituals and discipline is that they underline the romance of patriarchy. And Kingsley goes all the way with it. The unconscious shadings that sneak into this highly conscious actor's best performances are what give them a magnetic vim. In House of Sand and Fog he's at his peak.

Kingsley knows in his bones that without arms deals to secure or troops to command, his character has focused all his force into domestic machismo. His assumption of total parental and marital responsibility is off-putting - also admirable. It includes doing anything to marry off his daughter properly and to prize his teen-age boy's sensitivity and honor while trying to toughen him up.

This husband is simultaneously forbidding and erotic in his air of command. And Aghdashloo plays his wife with exquisite sensuality, compassion and pride. She engages him in alternately violent and subtle struggles over their household's direction, and when they share a moment of ecstasy, their pleasure becomes palpable without soft-core rolling around.

The colonel's tragedy is that he places too much confidence in his capacity to manage events - which, of course, can't extend over volatile people like the woman he displaces and her too-determined-to-prove-himself screw-up of a deputy. Kingsley makes you see the valor of the colonel's masculine urge to control and the pride that comes before a fall worse than anything he could have expected. Into an ending that could have been an unrelieved (and unearned) downer, he breathes the cleansing force of emotional release.,0,3949693.story?coll=bal-artslife-today

I finally had the chance to see this movie, it was an excellent depicition of the average Iranian-American family. I'd have to say that the protrayal of the family was so concise that it reminded me of all surrounding family friends growing up.
Though it tried to separate Persians from Arabs, in one scene Mrs. Aghadashloo even prejudically says 'I did not come to America to work like an Arab', some ignorantly took it to mean that she as an Iranian is an Arab and she came to America to separate herself from her 'Arabism', instead of the fact that she is a Persian and Iranians have had a strong prejudical past with Arabs and see them lower than themselves.

about 3/4th of the theater was crying.. it's extremely sad.. and i hope this opens more doors to Persian culture and heritage and allows more of the reality to sink in..

If you haven't seen it, i hightly recommend it.. bring a shoulder to cry on.
4 posted on 01/10/2004 12:04:13 AM PST by freedom44
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To: DoctorZIn
Fall of the Dictators

January 10, 2004
The Straits Times
William Choong

ONE of the world's biggest gatherings of dictators - both past and present - can be found in a private garden in the American state of Texas.

There, a notorious crowd of top names mingles. It includes Soviet leader Vladimir Lenin, Romanian despot Nicolae Ceausescu and long-serving Cuban autocrat Fidel Castro.

Owned by Dallas real estate investor Harlan Crow, the statues and busts of such colourful personalities were bought off sculptors or officials as regimes crumbled.

Lenin's statue, for example, was toppled by a Georgian crowd celebrating the end of Moscow's formal control there.

It was found behind a warehouse and was ferried by truck across Georgian and Turkish checkpoints before being shipped to Texas.

'I had to sleep with one eye open for three days, but it was worth it,' Mr Crow told the New York Times.

His growing collection bears out one key fact: For those adept at harassing their citizens and political rivals, stashing away large wads of their countries' hard-earned foreign exchange and building up huge arsenals of banned weapons, dictators had a torrid year in 2003.

The trend is new. For years, dictators got away into relatively tranquil retirement, unfrazzled by trial or retribution.

Nigeria's Ibrahim Babangida, for example, kept enough political power to even avoid the bother of exile.

But in recent years, a confluence of factors has affected tyrants from Baghdad to Tripoli.

Across many countries, there has been a burgeoning of an educated and well-informed middle class which has enjoyed some aid from Western democracies to rout their local despot.

Another push factor has been the growing web of globalisation and democracy. And after the Sept 11 attacks in the US, the American doctrine of pre-emptive strikes against so-called rogue states has yielded significant returns.

Iraq's deposed president Saddam Hussein, for example, bore the brunt of this policy in April last year when his regime fell to US-led forces.

And analysts believe that Libyan autocrat Muammar Gaddafi was all too aware of this policy when he announced the termination of his country's banned weapons programmes last month.

'There's a fear on the part of Gaddafi and North Korea's Kim Jong Il that if they don't change, the US might actually invade,' said Mr Mark Palmer, author of Breaking The Real Axis Of Evil: How To Oust The World's Last Dictators By 2025.

And this is a long-term trend, the veteran US diplomat told The Straits Times.

Since 1974, about 30 of the world's despots - or half the global total - have been toppled.

According to a widely watched annual report by Freedom House last year, a New York-based human rights group, about a quarter of the world's 192 countries were tagged 'not free' - markedly lower than 43 per cent in 1973.

The departure of many big-name dictators, however, would mean a loss of entertainment value - particularly for news hacks.

For years, their notoriety stemmed not only from their clinical efficiency in dispatching their political opponents, but also their quirky and quixotic qualities.

According to Italian journalist Riccardo Orizio, who wrote a book based on hard-won interviews with seven dictators, Ugandan strongman Idi Amin takes the cake.

To Britain's Queen Elizabeth, Amin - nicknamed the 'buffoon tyrant' - offered to send a cargo ship full of bananas to help Uganda's former coloniser with its 'economic problems'.

According to Mr Orizio, Amin once wrote a telex to the Queen saying: 'Dear Liz, if you want to know a real man, come to Kampala.'

Amin - who died in August in Saudi Arabia - was also reported to have expressed admiration for Adolf Hitler and kept the severed heads of political opponents in his refrigerator.

In Turkmenistan, President Saparmurat Niyazov has named some days of the week after himself, including a new name, 'Turkmenbashi', or 'father of all Turkmen'.

A golden profile of the man is also broadcast on a corner of two state television channels at all times.

All said, analysts and diplomats agree that there is much work to be done about the world's remaining dictators.

To some, however, the process of 'domino democratisation' is again happening.

This happened across Eastern Europe in the early 1990s and Latin America in the 1980s.

It is the exact opposite of the 1960s-vintage domino theory put out by American policymakers, which predicted a communist wave engulfing states during the Cold War.

Washington Post columnist Charles Krauthammer has argued that American military force used in Iraq has yielded results across the Middle East.

Besides Libya, Iran has agreed to surprise checks on its nuclear sites while Syria - Israel's arch foe - has made peace overtures.

'The domino effects of the Iraq campaign are already in clear view,' he noted.

Another instrument to bring down dictators would be the full force of international law, said other analysts.

Already, a growing number of leaders have been brought to international tribunals.

They include former Yugoslavian leader Slobodan Milosevic, Liberia's Charles Taylor and Jean Kambanda, the Rwandan prime minister jailed for life for genocide.

'The practice of dictatorship should really be considered a crime against humanity,' said Mr Palmer.

There are other more novel ways as well.

Some have proposed the 'fatal hug', where the United States would grant its enemies full diplomatic recognition.

The end-result: This opens the door to the 'insidiously attractive' forces of globalisation and democracy - Coca Cola, Levi's and Big Macs.

This could work in relatively isolated countries like Iran and North Korea, where anti-American rhetoric has been used to mask decades of autocratic rule.

'It would certainly catch the mullahs by surprise,' Iranian dissident Azar Nafisi told Time magazine.

'It would drive them crazy - the thought of having an American embassy in Teheran again, with lines of people around the block, trying to get green cards,' said the fellow at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.

An even more innovative way to manage dictators like North Korea's Mr Kim could well be something akin to a Dictators Anonymous.

Mr Ralph Cossa, president of the Pacific Forum CSIS, a research institute based in Honolulu, has even suggested that Libya's reformed Mr Gaddafi speak to Mr Kim himself.

Such a form of private diplomacy beats other private initiatives conducted by well-meaning professors, former politicians and diplomats, he argued.

Novel initiatives aside, the year 2003 was probably the only year where so many of the world's most noxious leaders have fallen.

'Unfortunately there are still several dozen well-entrenched dictatorial regimes in the world and I think they will fall only slowly,' Mr Thomas Carothers, a senior associate at Washington's Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, told The Straits Times.

The key problem could lie with the US.

During much of the Cold War, Washington supported oppressive regimes which it used to form a defence against the expansion of the former Soviet Union's communist empire.

Notable examples were Saddam and the Shah of Iran before the revolution of 1979.

Former US president Franklin Roosevelt reportedly said this about murderous Nicaraguan dictator Anatasio Somozo: 'He may be a son of a b***h, but he's our son of a b***h.'

Now, however, a similar trend is occurring - states with dictatorial leaders who are on-side with Washington in its global war against terror have been given lots of latitude.

Take, for example, Ethiopia's ruling People Revolutionary Democratic Front, Uzbek leader Islam Karimov or Pakistan's Pervez Musharraf, an army general who toppled an elected government.

And quite often, such dictators clothe themselves with the tools of political legitimacy - democracy. 'They are elected autocrats,' argued former Foreign Affairs editor Fareed Zakaria, referring to leaders such as Zimbabwe's Robert Mugabe and Azerbaijan's Ilham Aliyev.

'Maybe that's the form new dictatorship takes, through leaders who have found a way to use the symbols of legitimacy of the modern age.

'They embrace one element of democracy - elections - and forgo all the others.'

Rogues Gallery

For many decades, the career paths of the world's dictators went from the brutal oppression of citizens and the amassing of great wealth, and then into leisurely retirement. Recently, however, an increasing minority are finding themselves out of a job, in court or in prison.


Saddam Hussein (1979-2003)

Styling himself as a Arab nationalist, Saddam ruled his people with brutal force and even gassed them. He also led Iraq into three wars in two decades.

He was captured by US forces last month and is awaiting trial.

Slobodan Milosevic (1989-2000)

Milosevic rode a wave of Serbian nationalism to power in 1989 when he was elected President of the Serbian Republic.

But Nato action to stop ethnic cleansing of Kosovo resulted in his capture and removal from power in 2000. He is on trial at the Hague for war crimes.

Idi Amin (1971-1979)

Dubbed the buffoon tyrant, Idi Amin presided over a reign of terror in Uganda during which an estimated 300,000 people died.

He declared himself King of Scotland, banned hippies and mini-skirts, and appeared at a royal Saudi Arabian funeral in 1975 wearing a kilt. He died in August last year.

Charles Taylor (1989-2003)

He came to power after launching a revolt against Liberia's dictator Samuel Doe in 1989. An estimated 200,000 people died before his supporters emerged as the dominant force.

He is accused of masterminding conflicts in West Africa. He lives in exile in Nigeria which, for now, is refusing to extradite him for trial before a UN tribunal.


Muammar Gaddafi (1969 - )

Hostile towards the West and reportedly a sponsor of terrorism, Colonel Gaddafi rules by decree and denies Libyans a range of basic rights.

With Libya becoming increasingly isolated, however, he has sought to have Libya accepted back into the international community.

Kim Jong-Il (1997 - )

Diplomats and escaped dissidents talk of a vain, paranoid, cognac-guzzling hypochondriac. He is said to wear platform shoes and favour a bouffant hairstyle to appear taller than his 1.57m.

Analysts said such eccentricities could mask the cunning mind of a master manipulator, or betray an irrational madman.

Fidel Castro (1959 - )

Life in Castro's Cuba is essentially controlled by the state, and political dissent is a punishable offence.

He earned the enmity of the US by nationalising US-owned properties and has reputedly survived more than 600 CIA-sponsored attempts on his life.

Sources: BBC, Christian Science Monitor, Newsday,4386,229322,00.html
5 posted on 01/10/2004 12:05:44 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn
Where are the Ayatollahs?
6 posted on 01/10/2004 12:07:34 AM PST by freedom44
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To: DoctorZIn
When I think of the Iranians I think of the people that fought the invading Mongols so well that even in defeat, after Gengis had made mountains of severed Persian heads, Gengis himself said Persians were worthy of respect.

Gengis was a tough audience!!!!

You guys hang in there, things are working out. Keep George Walker Bush President. That is what it takes.
7 posted on 01/10/2004 12:15:15 AM PST by Iris7 ("Duty, Honor, Country". The first of these is Duty, and is known only through His Grace)
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To: DoctorZIn

The hardline Muslim regime in Iran is watching uncomfortably as the United States prepares ousted Saddam Hussein. Polling has shown the Iranian people are among the most pro-American in the Middle East. And recent demonstrations reveal that many Iranians want an end to the Islamic government.

In December, it looked to some observers that the end might be near for Iran's Islamic theocracy. But the largest anti-government demonstrations since 1999 sparked a police crackdown and fizzled out. But what has not fizzled is the Iranian people's yearning for radical change, both political and economic. Unemployment is officially at 16 percent but may be as high as 30 percent. Public opinion polls regularly embarrass Iran's anti-American leadership.

In surveys, most Iranians agreed with George W. Bush that their government is part of the "Axis of Evil." In one poll, most Iranians said they wanted better relations with the United States. And despite years of government propaganda, many Iranians love the U.S. But perhaps the biggest problem of all for Iran's Islamic hardliners is demographics. Of Iran's 70 million people, two-thirds are under the age of 30. And half were not alive at the time of Iran's 1979 revolution.

Iran's young people have been called the most serious threat to the future of the Islamic republic. Most want freedom and a higher standard of living, and they do not care about the ideals of the Islamic revolution. Built upon that discontent, a grassroots movement for reform is continuing to spread.

President Khatami, who promised reform but has failed to break the grip of the fundamentalist clerics, has threatened to resign. If he did resign, and that is a big "if," it could trigger public upheaval substantial enough to bring down the entire regime.
8 posted on 01/10/2004 12:29:15 AM PST by freedom44
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To: DoctorZIn; McGavin999; freedom44; nuconvert; Eala; AdmSmith; dixiechick2000; onyx; Pro-Bush; ...
Solana: Iran, natural partner of EU

IRIB English News

Brussels, Jan 10 - Javier Solana, EU high representative for the common foreign and security policy, Friday described the Islamic Republic as an important country with which the EU seeks solid relationship.

"I have been in Tehran on many occasions and I will continue to be, because for us, for Europeans Iran is a natural partner and is an important country and a country ( with which) I hope there will be a solid relationship," said Solana in an exclusive interview with IRNA in Brussels Friday afternoon.

Solana begins an official visit to Tehran on Monday for talks on EU-Iran relations with the Iranian leadership.

"This trip I have a mandate from the leaders of the European Union. We have a dialogue in many fields and I hope there will be a very close relationship. As I said before Iran is a natural partner for the EU," he said.

The EU summit in Brussels in December asked Solana to go to Tehran to lay the ground for further development of relations after Iran signed the additional protocol to the NPT. Solana denied reports in some western media which alleged that he was going to Tehran to put pressure on the Iranian side on issues like human rights, nuclear programme and the Middle East problem.

"Relations with an important country like Iran is based on mutual respect. There are issues that we agree and issues that we disagree. We try to solve all the problems through the mechanism of dialogue and not through any other way," stressed Solana in the interview with IRNA.

Replying to a question on the current EU-Iran relations, Solana said, "We want to have a very natural partnership with Iran. We have many points of contact, dialogue, cooperation, transparency."

Asked when he thought the trade and cooperation negotiations between the EU and Iran would resume, Solana said he cannot give a specific date now.

"It will be something to discuss, to talk. The dialogue will continue to be open in all the fields in which we have a dialogue now."

"I hope that soon we can contribute to the resumption of the negotiations,'' added Solana who is regarded as one of the main proponents of engagement and dialogue between the European bloc and Iran.

EU and Iran have held four rounds of TCA talks which were launched in December 2002.

Solana noted that his visit is taking place "in a very dramatic moment for Iran," referring to the Bam earthquake.

"The Europeans have shown deep sympathy for the tragedy in Bam,"he said.

"I would very much like to visit Bam to show on behalf of the European Union to the people of Bam our support and sympathy and commitment to provide assistance to humanitarian efforts," he said.
9 posted on 01/10/2004 12:31:22 AM PST by F14 Pilot (Either you are with us or you are with the terrorists.)
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran UN Diplomat Warns against Conservatives' Victory in Majles Elections

•“Yet the conservative bloc and its authoritarian fringe — which had seen a succession of devastating defeats from 1997 to 2001 — were emboldened by last year's result and have set their eyes on recapturing the Parliament next month. Should this happen, the immediate result would be that President Khatami's hands would be tied for the rest of his final term of office, which expires in 2005,” member of the Islamic Government's permanent mission to the UN Bagher Asadi, who is a member of the Secretary General's panel on civil societies, writes in the New York Times. (Ali Sajjadi)

•The Guardians Council will disqualify a large number of election candidacy applicants, deputy Majles speaker and influential member of the leftist Mojahedin of the Islamic Revolution organization (MIRO) Behzad Nabavi said today. The measure of people's participation in the February 20 Majles elections is the impact of their vote on the country's affairs, he added. In the past, the people's vote has not been honored, and the elected Majles and government had no impact, he added. Observers in Tehran said the interior minister and the Majles speaker did not succeed to get the Supreme Leader's approval to lowering the number of disqualified applicants. Many of the Majles MPs are reportedly among those barred from standing in the upcoming elections. (Nima Tamadon)
10 posted on 01/10/2004 12:52:51 AM PST by freedom44
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To: DoctorZIn
40 Percent of Workers Live Below Poverty Line

•More than 40 percent of the country's labor force lives below poverty level, and 60 percent are on the verge of poverty, secretary of the association of workers' Islamic councils Hassan Sadeqi says. The government's minimum wage law has no effect when the inflation is in double digits. (Nima Tamadon)
11 posted on 01/10/2004 12:53:52 AM PST by freedom44
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To: DoctorZIn
Top Film Honors

The supporting-actress honor went to Shohreh Aghdashloo for "House of Sand and Fog," and Melissa Leo (news) was runner-up for "21 Grams."
12 posted on 01/10/2004 1:00:01 AM PST by freedom44
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To: freedom44
I saw that, I thought it was one sick movie!

Almost everyone in that movie made choices which were the wrong ones it seems, with the worst ones made by Connelly and the Cop.

Each failure here was one of selfishness or laziness. If Connelly read her mail she would not have had this problem. If the Cop remembered his oath to his wife, he would not have done what he did.

Even after the house sale, when confronted with the facts, Kingsley should have done the right thing and moved out of the woman's house. He should have offered to sue the city with the woman for a false sale, and BOTH of them make money for the error.

To end the movie the way it did, that was a cowardly way out, also.

I found it to be one of those movies that you just could not take your eyes off of it while watching it, but had to take a bath after.
13 posted on 01/10/2004 2:43:18 AM PST by RaceBannon
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To: F14 Pilot
"for Europeans Iran is a natural partner"

Solana likes to repeat this.....what the heck does it mean? "natural"? That the europeans are tyrants at heart, too?
14 posted on 01/10/2004 6:44:03 AM PST by nuconvert ("This wasn't just plain terrible, this was fancy terrible. This was terrible with raisins in it. ")
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To: DoctorZIn
The mullahs and Mugabe must be included on that list... if Musharaff is included. What a strange article. I'll have to read it again.
15 posted on 01/10/2004 8:07:53 AM PST by Pan_Yans Wife (Freedom is a package deal - with it comes responsibilities and consequences.)
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To: DoctorZIn
Rebuilding Bam Could Cost $1 Billion, Says UN

January 10, 2004
VOA News
AFP and AP

United Nations humanitarian affairs officials say reconstruction costs in the earthquake stricken Iranian city of Bam could reach $1 billion.

U.N. experts said Friday that rebuilding would likely take several years. The majority of the cost will be paid by the Iranian government, but the United Nations will be involved in the planning phase.

As plans get under way to rebuild the devastated city, U.N. officials are dealing with the immediate issue of trying to feed and shelter survivors.

In Rome Friday, the World Food Program launched a three-month emergency operation to feed 100,000 people affected by the Bam earthquake.

The U.N. food agency has allocated nearly $3 million to provide survivors with daily rations of food, including special nutritional crackers. The food aid is meant to help meet their daily needs, so they can try to get on with the monumental task of rebuilding their lives.

More than 30,000 people died in the December 26 quake. Thousands more were injured and most of the city's residents were left homeless.

Some information for this report provided by AFP and AP.
16 posted on 01/10/2004 8:16:43 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn
Special Visa Created Just for Well-off from Iran

January 10, 2004
The Sydney Morning Herald
Mike Seccombe

Australia will host foreign guest workers for the first time, after changes to immigration law permitting indentured workers to stay for up to three years.

But the new visa provisions, which came into force on January 1, will allow only a fortunate few Iranians to have "working holidays" here, under conditions far more lenient than those applying to other temporary visitors.

So far, only five have been granted and only three people have arrived in Australia.

The unique provisions arise from a secret memorandum of understanding between Iran and Australia, aimed at reducing the number of asylum seekers.

Under the deal, Iran agreed to accept the return of asylum seekers, and Australia agreed to grant extra visa privileges to well-off, well-educated Iranians.

Under visa subclass 462 such people can apply for up to three consecutive work and holiday visas, and can do so without leaving the country as others do.

They can also, for the first time, apply even if they have dependent children. Usually, working holiday visas are for young, dependent-free tourists to fund extended visits with casual work.

However, the special category appears closer to the concept of guest-worker visas, as used by many other countries.

Details on the Immigration Department website stipulate that to apply for an extension the visa holder must have the "support of their foreign government and of their current employer".

When the Herald sought details from the department, a written response said it was part of "ongoing implementation of the memorandum of understanding with Iran, signed in March 2003".

It said the aim was to help combat illegal immigration, and said it would allow "young Iranians and Australians to work and holiday in each others' countries".

The Foreign Affairs website warns that visiting Iran carries risks, including from terrorist attacks, battles between security forces and drug lords, corrupt officialdom, and dying in an air crash aboard the country's aged aircraft.

A spokesman for the Immigration Minister, Amanda Vanstone, said yesterday it was "completely wrong" to categorise the holders of such visas as guest workers, because the category was restricted to the tertiary qualified.
17 posted on 01/10/2004 8:19:30 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn
US: Iran Must Address Freedom, Nuclear Capability

January 10, 2004

Iran must improve democratic rights and come clean about its nuclear assets, the US Department of State said.

The department also said US engagement with Iran would come "if and when" President George W. Bush determines the time is ripe.

Analysts had thought US aid to earthquake victims in Bam, southern Iran might open a door to rapprochement, but US officials said Iran is still developing nuclear weapons and hampering democracy.

"Our policy has been to engage Iran on specific issues of concern in an appropriate manner if and when the president determines he wants to do so," State Department spokesman Richard Boucher said.

"I don't want to speculate at this point of whether there might be such discussions again but we do think these issues need to be addressed," Boucher told reporters.

Boucher said Washington continues to have "issues with Iran."

"Issues like the voices of people in Iran that look for more freedom, issues like al-Qaeda members who are in Iran, issues like Iran's nuclear program, which needs to be resolved in a satisfactory manner consistent with Iran's promises and commitments to the international community," Boucher said.

He said the two countries had broached some of these issues, alluding to secretive US-Iranian diplomatic talks in Geneva last May.

However, Iran's former president said Friday that it was time for the United States to put such "accusations" behind it.

The Islamic republic's former president Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani said the United States must stop making accusations against Iran if it wants to open a new page in relations with Tehran.

"If the United States wants to extend the hand of friendship and turn a new page, they should stop repeating past accusations (against Iran) which are totally false," Rafsanjani said at weekly Friday prayers in the Iranian capital.

The two countries broke off relations in 1980 following the Islamic revolution that deposed the Shah of Iran. Bush has described Iran as part of the "axis of evil."

Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khameini, said Thursday that US humanitarian aid for the victims of the Bam earthquake had not improved relations, saying Washington continues to show "basic hostility" toward Iran.

In Washington, US Secretary of State Colin Powell, on Thursday, seemed more upbeat on diplomatic prospects following the dispatch of US aid to the quake zone.

"This is not a political breakthrough, but it was nevertheless a human breakthrough ... so we will see what happens in the future with respect to our relationship with Iran," Powell said.
18 posted on 01/10/2004 8:21:20 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; McGavin999; Hinoki Cypress; ...
US: Iran Must Address Freedom, Nuclear Capability

January 10, 2004
19 posted on 01/10/2004 8:22:37 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn
He said the two countries had broached some of these issues, alluding to secretive US-Iranian diplomatic talks in Geneva last May.

Is there any further information about these talks?

20 posted on 01/10/2004 8:24:05 AM PST by Pan_Yans Wife (Freedom is a package deal - with it comes responsibilities and consequences.)
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To: DoctorZIn
Iranians Can't Import Booze, But Iraqis are Happy to Help

January 10, 2004
The Associated Press
St. Petersburg Times

SULAIMANIYAH, Iraq - Just east of here, where the towering peaks of the Zagros mountains mark the border with Iran, a single product dominates the Iraqi exports hauled across the frontier by pack mule and tractor-trailer.

That product is liquor: from well-known Western brands of bourbon and Scotch whisky to various types of vodka, gin and anise-flavored arak.

Iraq's booming liquor trade with Iran is a consequence of the divergence between the two countries' laws. Alcohol is banned in the Islamic Republic of Iran. It is perfectly legal in secular Iraq, even if most Iraqis avoid it for religious reasons.

Not only is liquor legal in Iraq, it is untaxed and cheap. Stores sell liter bottles of Johnny Walker Red Label for $10. In Iran, the same bottle commands at least five times the price, people here say.

"A tractor-trailer load of Jack Daniels is worth a few million dollars on the other side," said Staff Sgt. David Spence-Sales, 34, of the U.S. Army's 101st Airborne Division. "It's illegal to bring alcohol into Iran but it's not illegal to ship it out of Iraq."

The penalty for sale or consumption of alcohol in Iran is a fine or flogging, or both.

Iranian citizens who are Armenian Christians are legally allowed to make their own wine for church services and spirits for personal consumption.

The arbitrage keeps afloat a plethora of liquor stores in Sulaimaniyah, the largest city in the Kurdish lands of northeastern Iraq and a center of trade with Iran.

Spence-Sales, whose long-range surveillance unit has trained several groups of Iraqi border police, says Iraqi customs officers simply wave the trucks through the main border post near the town of Penjwin, despite knowing the trucks ferry goods banned across the line.

At least a few of the 100 to 200 trucks that cross into Iran at Penjwin each day are laden with liquor, said Sgt. Louis Gitlin of Wasilla, Alaska. Across the border, truckers pay bribes to see the loads through Iranian customs.

"They'll pick a small border site and pay the Iranians $20, and they'll leave it open all day," said Spence-Sales, a Canadian from Toronto. "It's big money over there."

"Everybody gets his little piece," Gitlin said.

At a staging point trains near the border, a group of smugglers loaded crates of vodka, whiskey and gin onto a dozen pack horses destined for a rocky trail that leads into Iran. The smugglers, all ethnic Kurds, said the smuggling is made easier because Kurds, who dominate the population on both sides of the border, are able to move back and forth with ease.

Besides liquor, Iraqi exports to Iran include cigarettes, televisions, vacuum cleaners, scrap metal and heavy machinery, as well as subsistence food such as rice and beans, the soldiers said. But liquor is the most lucrative, Spence-Sales said.

Six U.S. military surveillance units and 870 Iraqi border police officers - most of them ex-Kurdish independence fighters - patrol the 434 miles of border between Iraqi Kurdistan and Iran.

"They call us infidels for our loose moral standards," Spence-Sales said. "But they live just like everyone else. You have to balance the rhetoric with what really happens."
21 posted on 01/10/2004 8:28:17 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn
Jailed Iranian Journalists Start the New Year in Harsh Prison Conditions

January 09, 2004
Reporters Without Borders

Reporters Without Borders has expressed its indignation at the prison conditions of 11 Iranian journalists, most of them ill and in a very physically and psychologically weakened state. The international press freedom organisation renews its objections to their often-arbitrary detention and calls for their release.

"It is completely unacceptable for journalists like Siamak Pourzand, who is sick and 74-years old, to still be held in solitary confinement," said Robert Ménard, secretary general of Reporters Without Borders."The same goes for Ali-Reza Jabari, 60, who is suffering from heart problems and has even received 253 lashes. The journalists' families are not even allowed to bring warm clothing to the sick prisoners.". Ménard added that Reporters Without Borders remained very concerned by the cases of Taghi Rahmani, Reza Alijani and Hoda Saber, whose legal position was unclear at the least and for whom the legal period of being held in custody had long ago passed.

Information about the 11 jailed journalists :

Siamak Pourzand, freelance journalist for several independent newspapers, sentenced to eight years in prison, has been jailed since November 2000. This 74-year-old has been put under heavy psychological pressure and has been tortured during interrogation. In an open letter his wife said, "He is held in solitary confinement in the basement of Evin Jail. According to a diagnosis given on 30 July 2003 at the Imam Khomeini Hospital in Teheran he is suffering from an arthritic neck and worrying disc problems that will require an operation. He is unable to walk and to attend to his daily needs".

Ali-Reza Jabari, journalist with the monthly Adineh, jailed since 17 March 2003, was sentenced to three years in prison and 253 lashes. At over 60 years old, Ali-Reza Jabari has heart problems. Held in a cell with common-law prisoners, he has been treated even worse since a letter detailing his prison conditions was published on an Internet site. The prison authorities refuse to allow his wife to bring him warm clothing.

Hassan Youssefi Eshkevari, journalist for Iran-e-Farda, sentenced to seven years in prison, has been jailed since 5 August 2000. Diabetic and insulin-dependent and suffering from bleeding from his eyes, he was given a temporary release to seek medical treatment but his doctors say he urgently needs intensive care outside of prison.

Akbar Ganji, journalist with the daily Sobh-e-Emouz, sentenced to six years in prison, has been jailed since 2 April 2000. Suffering from an acute throat disorder, he was allowed a 10-day pass for treatment but doctors believe he needs an urgent operation.

Iraj Jamshidi, editor in chief of the financial daily Asia, held in detention since 6 July 2003, has still not been tried. On the eve of a visit from the UN special rapporteur, Ambeyi Ligabo, he was transferred from his isolation cell to a dormitory. Since then he has been returned to the basement of Evin Jail. He has been allowed only one visit, coinciding with Ligabo's trip.

Ali-Reza Ahmadi, also of Asia, jailed since 29 July 2003, and still remanded in custody.

Hossein Ghazian, journalist with the daily Norouz, sentenced to four and a half years in prison and jailed since 31 October 2002.

Abbas Abdi, of the daily Salam, sentenced to four and a half years in prison and held since 4 November 2002.

Taghi Rahmani, of Omid-e-Zangan, imprisoned since 14 June 2003, for no official reason, has been held in solitary confinement for nearly two months and has not been allowed to receive any visitors since 6 December. He was reportedly sentenced on appeal, in another case, to 13 years in jail.

Reza Alijani, editor in chief of Iran-e-Farda and laureate of the Reporters Without Borders-Fondation de France press freedom prize, imprisoned since 14 June 2003, for no official reason, held in solitary confinement for nearly two months and not allowed any visitors since 6 December. He was reportedly sentenced on appeal in another case to six years in prison.

Hoda Saber, managing editor of Iran-e-Farda, also held since 14 June 2003. He was reportedly sentence on appeal in another case to ten years in prison.

The Association for the Defence of Prisoners' Rights, set up at the end of December by the journalist Emadoldin Baghi (given a one-year suspended jail sentence on 4 December) and human rights activist, on 6 December 2003 released a statement in Teheran condemning the situation of Iran's jailed journalists.

A petition signed by more than 1,000 university students and professors was published and addressed to the 'Iranian people' on 5 January 2004, calling for the release of Taghi Rahmani, Reza Alijani and Hoda Saber whom it said had been "illegally and unfairly arrested".
22 posted on 01/10/2004 8:31:08 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn
Powell sees chances for dialogue with Iran

By Reuters

WASHINGTON - U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell said on Friday the Bam earthquake had opened up some opportunities for dialogue between the United States and Iran even though there was no reason to expect a quick political rapprochement

In his comments to Arab television network Abu Dhabi TV, Powell went further than other U.S. officials over the last few days in raising the possibility of a dialogue between the long-time adversaries.

"It showed that in a crisis like that we could cooperate, and maybe that will lead to other areas of cooperation. But we should not think that just because of this humanitarian rapprochement it immediately leads to a political rapprochement," Powell said according to a transcript of the interview released by the State Department.

"But I think it has opened up some opportunities for dialogue with Iran," the top U.S. diplomat added.

In the aftermath of the December 26 disaster that killed more than 30,000 people in the city of Bam, the U.S. relief efforts seemed to have prompted something of a thaw in relations between Washington and the Islamic state.

But when Iran rejected a U.S. proposal to also send a high-level humanitarian mission, including Sen. Elizabeth Dole, a former head of the American Red Cross, the chances of further contacts appeared to cool.

Amid mixed messages from Tehran, Iran's Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi on Thursday again raised hopes for fresh contacts saying the government was willing to resume dialogue with the United States, provided the talks were based on mutual respect.

While adopting a softer tone since the earthquake both Tehran and Washington have set pre-conditions for improving relations, which have been formally broken for more than two decades.

Washington wants Tehran to hand over detained al Qaeda suspects, abandon its nuclear program and stop backing Palestinian militant groups that attack Israel.

Iran has called on Washington to lift economic sanctions imposed in 1995, which among other things prevent U.S. companies from investing in OPEC's second largest oil producer or trading in Iranian oil.
23 posted on 01/10/2004 8:35:55 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn
I just received this from a student in Iran regarding the upcoming elections in Iran...

"I have got some thing for you. Another poll done by the Social Science faculty of University of Tehran.

The poll shows that 31 percent of the people being asked haven't decided whether to vote or not, 26 percent won't vote and 42% will vote.

Those who plan to vote get their news from state run media, those who wont vote get news through LA based TV channels."
24 posted on 01/10/2004 8:45:29 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: F14 Pilot
So, the EU wants to be partners with Iran. Are they even slightly aware of the democracy movement in that country? Do they have any idea how much the people of Iran will hate the EU and once they take over (and they will) they will continue to hate the EU?

Ask the Iraqi people how fond they are of the french. Most of them want absolutely nothing to do with them. Sure, eventually they'll be allowed to bid work in Iraq, but their feet will be held to the fire, the average person will spit on the french, and they will find that behind the "it's only business" smiles there lurks a deep desire for revenge against those who helped to keep Saddam in power.

The stupid EU has learned NOTHING!

25 posted on 01/10/2004 8:46:29 AM PST by McGavin999 (Don't be a Freeploader-Have you donated yet?)
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To: F14 Pilot
Thanks for the ping!
26 posted on 01/10/2004 9:01:16 AM PST by Alamo-Girl
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To: DoctorZIn
42% is awfully high. I wonder if people are afraid of the conservatives taking over if they don't vote?. Can't blame them in that regard, but the people should unite and decide what they want as a whole in order to convey a message to the regime and the rest of the world.
27 posted on 01/10/2004 10:01:30 AM PST by nuconvert ("This wasn't just plain terrible, this was fancy terrible. This was terrible with raisins in it. ")
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To: F14 Pilot
Freedom in Iran ~ Now!
28 posted on 01/10/2004 10:23:24 AM PST by blackie
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran reformists react to GC's illegal invalidations

Saturday, January 10, 2004 - ©2003

TEHRAN, Jan 10 (IranMania) – With Iran’s much anticipated February Parliamentary elections approaching, all the candidates affiliated to the Freedom Movement, the majority of the reformist figures and the national-religious party aspirants have been ruled out by Iran’s hardline Guardian Council.

The Spokesman of the central supervisory board, Mohammad Jahromi said that so far almost 30% of the candidates have been ‘invalidated’.

Many political activists believe that such an act by the Guardian Council is in violation of the elections laws and the ratifications of the Expediency Council and the reformists have announced that they will categorically react to “these illegal invalidations”.

Some political activists and MPs have commented on the issue. Mohsen Armin, an MP in Tehran says that once it is proved that the supervisory boards have acted under the influence of extremist anti-reformist elements, Iranians “would firmly stand in their way in order not to give them a chance of creating tension in the country.” He emphasized that the reformists will never abandon their rights.

Armin believes that by banning candidates, the hardliners intend to provoke the reformists so that they can gain certain political advantages over the issue.

According to the Secretary General of the Freedom Movement, Ibrahim Yazdi the best reaction to the illegal invalidations is to avoid taking part in the elections.

“Despite its so-called investigations, the Guardian Council is not capable of deciding on the fate of 8,000 election aspirants and therefore having its own objectives in mind, it only rules out certain prominent figures. I think even those who have been approved of have to boycott the elections.” Yazdi says.

Hadi Ghabel, Member of the Participation Front thinks that if the elections are not to be fair and free, they should not take part in the event, for they do not intend to set the scene for the hardliners to win the seats. He blames the administration and the Ministry of Interior for the chaos.

Tehran’s MP, Elaheh Koulaei says that all reformists have to unanimously counter these illegal decisions. She described the 7th parliament as a big challenge and emphasized that the 6th parliament will defend the rights of citizens tooth and nail.

Emad-al-Din Baghi, Iranian historian and former jailed editor believes that in the past 25 years the Supervision Board (which authorizes the Guardian Council to rule out candidates before giving the citizens a chance to vote for them) has never helped the formation of a unified parliament.

“The only fruit of the 6th parliament was that it showed the Guardian Council’s ability in paralyzing the will of a nation in moving toward reforms.” he said.

Note: 95% of the Bills introduced by 6th parliament (majlis) were veto'd by the GC these bills included more press freedom, legalization of satellite dishes, push for equality on womans rights, privization of economy, foreign investment, ties with US, and finally getting rid of the GC.

The only bill that was passed of importance was equality of 'blood money' for Christians, Zoroastrians, and Jews. I don't know whether to laugh or cry.

29 posted on 01/10/2004 2:01:56 PM PST by freedom44
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To: DoctorZIn
"Imam Khomeini" airport to open in February

Saturday, January 10, 2004 - ©2003

TEHRAN, Jan 9 (Iran Daily) - The Minister of Road and Transportation Ahmad Khorram said that Imam Khomeini International Airport will handle all international flights once it becomes operational in February.

He added that Mehrabad International Airport will continue to serve passengers on domestic routes as well as those going on pilgrimage to Syria and Saudi Arabia. The minister further told reporters that Mehrabad Airport will provide better facilities for the pilgrims.

He stressed that the Islamic Republic of Iran's Airlines and the Saudi Airlines will transport over 96,000 Iranian Hajj pilgrims from Tehran, Mashhad, Sari, Isfahan, Shiraz, Tabriz, Kerman, Ahvaz, Yazd, Zahedan, Rasht, Kermanshah, Orumiyeh, Bandar Abbas and Bushehr to the holy cities of Jeddah and Medina in Saudi Arabia.

Khorram also said that financial ambiguities concerning the results of last year's tender for privatizing Shahid Rajaei Container Port are the main reason for the ministry's failure to make any specific announcements to this effect.

"This is a legal tender but the Ports and Shipping Organization is not quite sure about the figures," he maintained, declining to confirm reports that the tender has been annulled.

My friend jokingly told me about turning his grave into a nightclub with regime change.

30 posted on 01/10/2004 2:03:26 PM PST by freedom44
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To: F14 Pilot; DoctorZIn; Grampa Dave
Solana Sees Sympathy for Socialism, Anti-Semitism in EU and Iran.

Where does the EU stand on beating Canadian women journalists to death for reporting the truth about murderous regimes?


31 posted on 01/10/2004 4:34:26 PM PST by PhilDragoo (Hitlery: das Butch von Buchenvald)
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To: F14 Pilot
Solana and EU are worried when the people bring the criminal Mullahs down. They know once that happens they won't have access to freebies via corrupt Mullahs.
Solana and the rest of EU need to know helping Mullahs won't help them any more. It is the Iranian Nation they should help! May be soon they will find out how much the Iranian Nation hates EU for keeping quite about the atrocities of the last 25 years!! Mr. Solana, you won't be welcomed to Tehran, very soon!!
32 posted on 01/10/2004 4:55:10 PM PST by Mullah-Killer
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To: DoctorZIn; F14 Pilot; Grampa Dave
Issues like the voices of people in Iran that look for more freedom, issues like al-Qaeda members who are in Iran, issues like Iran's nuclear program

These accusations are false.

33 posted on 01/10/2004 5:40:52 PM PST by PhilDragoo (Hitlery: das Butch von Buchenvald)
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To: DoctorZIn
No Plans to Start Talks with US, says Iran FM

January 11, 2004
The Peninsula

TEHRAN -- Iran said yesterday it had no plans to start talks with its long-time adversary the United States, and that US policy towards the Islamic Republic must change.

US Secretary of State Colin Powell said on Friday Iran’s acceptance of US aid after the Bam earthquake had opened up opportunities for dialogue between the foes although there was no reason to expect a quick political rapprochement.

“Now there is no plan for starting negotiations,” said Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi. “US policy towards Iran must change, getting rid of its hostile atmosphere.”

“We have said that it is important for the negotiations between the countries to be based on mutual respect and to take place on an equal footing,” he added.

In the aftermath of the December 26 earthquake in the city of Bam that killed more than 30,000 people, the US relief effort was seen as prompting moves towards improved relations between Washington and Tehran.

Washington broke ties with Iran shortly after the 1979 Islamic revolution when radical students stormed the US embassy in Tehran and held 52 hostages for 444 days.

The United States has accused Iran of seeking nuclear weapons, of supporting anti-Israeli Islamic militants and of fomenting violence in Iraq. US President George W Bush said it was part of an “axis of evil” along with North Korea and Iraq under Saddam Hussein.

Iranians widely term the United States “The Great Satan” and President Mohammad Khatami was quoted in the hardline Jomhuri-ye Eslami daily on Wednesday as saying it was an “enemy” and “unreliable”.

Iran has called on Washington to lift sanctions imposed in 1995, which among other things prevent US companies from investing in OPEC’s second-largest producer or trading in Iranian oil.
34 posted on 01/10/2004 7:33:18 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn

TEHRAN, 9 Jan. (IPS)

A majority of candidates running for the next Majles (parliament) elections have been invalidated because of their rejection of the very fundaments of the present theocratic Constitution, according to a statement released Friday by the leader-controlled Council of the Guardians (CG).

Based on results obtained from the various examining bodies, including the Intelligence Ministry, the Office of the Public Prosecutor and the Law Enforcement Forces and the Interior Ministry, 54.5 per cent out of the 8.146 candidates that have registered so far have been rejected by the Council of the Guardians because they either "do not believe in Islamic principles (13.8%); do not believe in the fundaments of a religious governance (14.5%) or do not agree with the Constitution (16.5%).

Another 32 per cent of the runners have been rejected because of "financial and moral corruption or bad antecedents", the pro-conservative "Baztab" internet newspaper said without explaining, quoting the regime’s powerful but controversial 12-members Council of the Guardians that vets all candidates to all elections in the Islamic Republic.

"The result confirms the growing trend pointing to the majority of Iranians being divorced with the religion, opposed to the Constitution of the Islamic Republic and supporting s parliamentary system based on secularism", one Iranian scholar teaching at Tehran University told Iran Press Service on condition of anonymity.

According to Baztab, an internet website belonging to Mr. Mohsen Reza’i, the Secretary of the Expediency Council, some leading reformist figures like Dr. Mohammad Reza Khatami, the younger brother of the powerless President Mohammad Khatami who is both the leader of the Islamic Iran Participation Front (IIPF) and vice-Speaker, Mr. Mohsen Armin and Mr. Behzad Nabavi, both influential leaders of the Islamic Revolution’s Mojahedeen Organisation, the most important and best organized member of the Second Khordad Coalition that supports the lamed Khatami, Mrs. Fatemeh Haqiqatjoo, an outspoken reformist deputy from Tehran and Mr. Naser Shirzad, a representative to the Majles form Esfahan are among the hopefuls that have been rejected on charges of activities against the regime.

Next legislative elections are slated for 21 February and odds are that the conservatives would regain the control of the Majles, as a majority of young voters, deceived with both the reformist’s failure to carry out reforms promised by Hojjatoleslam Khatami during his first election campaign in 1997, have decided not to go to the polls, while other voices, including from the ranks of the reformists, call for a total boycott of the elections.

Expressing serous concern about the outcome of the elections, the seventh in the life of the Islamic Republic, Mr. Nabavi contested the Guardian’s self-appointed right of vetting candidates, saying, "Majles representatives are servants of the people, not the Council of the Guardians".

"I rather explode over a mine or I would disclose all information about the existence of a General Staff working against reformist candidates, he warned during a press conference on Friday, confirming an earlier statement by the Government’s official spokesman about the formation of such an "illegal" group.


35 posted on 01/10/2004 7:52:43 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn
Wait a darn minute! The State Dept says Iran is a democracy, and we all know they're never wrong about these sorts of thing.
36 posted on 01/10/2004 8:36:43 PM PST by Valin (We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give.)
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To: Mullah-Killer
First of all, I should welcome you the thread created by DoctorZIn...
We agree with you and I am sure that Mr. Solana and his EU counterparts won't be able to stop the movement Iranians started.
37 posted on 01/11/2004 12:08:14 AM PST by F14 Pilot (Either you are with us or you are with the terrorists.)
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To: DoctorZIn
This thread is now closed.

Join Us At Today's Iranian Alert Thread – The Most Underreported Story Of The Year!

"If you want on or off this Iran ping list, Freepmail DoctorZin”

38 posted on 01/11/2004 12:10:14 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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