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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 03/04/2004 12:12:06 AM PST by DoctorZIn
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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”

2 posted on 03/04/2004 12:14:30 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Nukes `R' Us

New York Times - By Gary Milhollin and Kelly Motz
Mar 4, 2004

WASHINGTON - America's relations with Pakistan and several other Asian countries have been rocked by the discovery of the vast smuggling network run by the Pakistani nuclear scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan. Unfortunately, one American ally at the heart of the scandal, Dubai in the United Arab Emirates, seems to be escaping punishment despite its role as the key transfer point in Dr. Khan's atomic bazaar.

Dubai's involvement is no surprise to those who follow the murky world of nuclear technology sales. For the last two decades it, along with other points in the emirates, has been the main hub through which traffickers have routed their illegal commerce to hide their trails. Yet the United States, which has depended on the emirates as a pillar of relative stability in the Middle East and, since 1991, as a host to American troops, has done little to pressure it to crack down on illicit arms trade.

In the wake of the Khan scandal, Washington has at least acknowledged the problem. President Bush singled out SMB Computers, a Dubai company run by B. S. A. Tahir, a Sri Lankan businessman living in Malaysia, as a "front for the proliferation activities of the A. Q. Khan network." According to the White House, Mr. Tahir arranged for components of high-speed gas centrifuges, which are used to enrich uranium so it can be used in nuclear weapons, to be manufactured in Malaysia, shipped to Dubai and then sent on to Libya. (In its investigation, the Malaysian government implicated another Dubai company, Gulf Technical Industries.)

American authorities say that Mr. Tahir also bought centrifuge parts in Europe that were sent to Libya via Dubai. In return for millions of dollars paid to Dr. Khan, Libya's leader, Col. Muammar Qaddafi, was to get enough centrifuges to make about 10 nuclear weapons a year.

Why ship through Dubai? Because it may be the easiest place in the world to mask the real destination of cargo. Consider how the Malaysian government is making the case for the innocence of its manufacturing company. "No document was traced that proved" the company "delivered or exported the said components to Libya," according to the country's inspector general of police. The real destination, he said, "was outside the knowledge" of the producer. One can be certain that if the Khan ring's European suppliers are ever tracked down, they will offer a similar explanation.

Dubai provides companies and governments a vital asset: automatic deniability. Its customs agency even brags that its policy on re-exporting "enables traders to transit their shipments through Dubai without any hassles." Next to Dubai's main port is the Jebel Ali free trade zone, a haven for freewheeling international companies. Our organization has has documented 264 firms from Iran and 44 from rogue regimes like Syria and North Korea.

With the laxity of the emirates' laws, there is simply no way to know how many weapon components have passed through. But consider some incidents that our organization has tallied — based on shipping records, government investigations, court documents, intelligence reports and other sources — over the last 20 years.

• In 1982, a German exporter and former Nazi, Alfred Hempel, sent 70 tons of heavy water, a component for nuclear reactors, from Sinochem in China to Dubai. The shipping labels were then changed to mask the transaction, and 60 tons of the heavy water were forwarded to India, where it enabled the government to use its energy-producing reactors to create plutonium for its atomic weapons program. The other 10 tons went to Argentina, which was interested in atomic weapons at the time.

• In 1983, Mr. Hempel sent 15 tons of heavy water from Norway's Norsk Hydro, and 6.7 tons from Techsnabexport in the Soviet Union, through the emirates to India.

• In 1985 and 1986, Mr. Hempel sent 12 more tons of Soviet heavy water to India that were used to start the Dhruva reactor, devoted to making plutonium for atomic bombs. (The details of these transactions come from German and Norwegian government audits, but Mr. Hempel, who died in 1989, was never convicted of a crime.)

• In 1990, a Greek intermediary offered Iraq an atomic-bomb design (probably of Chinese origin) from Dr. Khan in Pakistan, with a guarantee that "any requirements or materials" could be bought from Western countries and routed through Dubai. Iraq has said it rejected the offer and suspected it of being part of a sting operation, although a more likely explanation is that the impending 1991 Persian Gulf war precluded the deal.

• In 1994 and 1995, two containers of gas centrifuge parts from Dr. Khan's labs were shipped through Dubai to Iran for about $3 million worth of U.A.E. currency.

• In 1996, Guide Oil of Dubai ordered American-made impregnated alumina, which can be used for making nerve gas ingredients, and tried to pass it along to an Iranian purchasing agent, Drush Jamshidnezhad, in violation of American export control laws. A sample was delivered before the deal foundered when middlemen were caught by American officials in a sting operation.

• Also in 1996, the German government listed six firms in Dubai as front companies for Iranian efforts to import arms and nuclear technology.

• From 1998 to 2001, several consignments of rocket fuel ingredients shipped to Dubai by an Indian company, NEC Engineers, were sent to Iraq, in violation of Indian law and the United Nations embargo on Saddam Hussein's regime.

• In 2003, over Washington's protests, emirates customs officials allowed 66 American high-speed electrical switches, which are ideal for detonating nuclear weapons, to be sent to a Pakistani businessman with longstanding ties to the Pakistani military. American prosecutors have indicted an Israeli, Asher Karni, for allegedly exporting the switches through Giza Technologies in New Jersey to South Africa and then to Dubai.

The pattern is terrifying, and those examples are most likely a small part of the overall picture. So, will the Bush administration, with its focus on fighting terrorism and the spread of weapons of mass destruction, start cracking down on the emirates? The first signs are not promising. President Bush has warned of interrogations in Pakistan and actions against the factory in Malaysia that supplied Dr. Khan, but has given no hint of any penalties against Dubai. Lockheed Martin is about to send 80 F-16 fighters to the emirates, and a missile-defense deal may be in the offing.

The lesson of the Khan affair is that instead of focusing solely on "rogue regimes," we have to shut down the companies and individuals that supply them with illicit arms and technology. The United States and its allies have to put pressure on the countries that allow the trade to flourish — even if it means withholding aid and refusing arms sales. Unless Dubai cleans up its act, it should be treated like the smugglers it harbors.

Gary Milhollin is director of the Wisconsin Project on Nuclear Arms Control. Kelly Motz is associate director.
3 posted on 03/04/2004 12:18:02 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Check out my NEW thread:

Bush draws a crowd
[USC Daily Trojan covers pro-Bush Iranian-American/Free Republic rally] ^ | March 4, 2004 | SHRADDHA JAISWALI
Posted on 03/04/2004 5:32:13 AM PST by RonDog

Bush draws a crowd

President Bush spoke at the Shrine Auditorium Wednesday. More than 100 showed up for the event.

Elizabeth Leitzell | Daily Trojan
Mixed Emotion. The Iranian American Republicans were among the demonstrators who welcomed President Bush to the Shrine Auditorium Wednesday afternoon; they said they support him because he opposes terrorism in Iran.

Staff writer

President George W. Bush's visit to Southern California on Wednesday was marked by demonstrations from more than 130 supporters and opponents who packed onto the four corners of Jefferson Boulevard and Shrine Place in the early evening.

The demonstrators, both for and against the president, waved signs and shouted slogans at the drivers passing the Shrine Auditorium where Bush was scheduled to speak at 5:35 p.m.

With the clock ticking down to the November presidential election, Bush planned a three-day visit to California in hopes of raising funds for his re-election campaign.

The anti-Bush corner was home to about 80 people of all ages waving signs reading everything from a general "Stop Bush" to the more specific "End Occupation in Iraq" and "Immigrant Rights."

Many of the anti-Bush signs were provided by the Act Now to Stop War and End Racism organization, but they were joined by groups such as Code Pink, The Socialist Organization and Out Against War as well as by individuals simply wanting to be heard.

Those gathered at the corner shouting against Bush's policies felt it was necessary to protest even at a fundraising event to open the eyes of Californians.

"I hope to call attention to the fact that other people who think he should not be president will know they are not alone," said Eda Hallinan, a member of the women's peace group Code Pink.

"Bush is probably the worst president this country has ever had," she said. "I think that we are so much worse off now than when he first took office, in terms of the economy and our own security."

Along with the sea of anti-Bush posters, the protesters chanted their messages from a megaphone with sayings such as, "George Bush — we know you — your daddy was a killer too," and "Hands off Haiti."

But despite the loud anti-Bush sentiments, Bush supporters were not deterred from standing their ground. The largest group of Bush advocates at the four corners was a group of Iranians waving flags and shouting praises of the president's international policies.

"We're here to support President Bush because he's for democracy, not only in Iran, but around the world," said 59-year-old Reza Ershadi.

Fellow conservatives praised the Iranian effort to support Bush saying that they were dedicated and knew that Bush could help them.

"These guys have been here since 3 p.m.," said Ron Smith [aka RonDog] pointing to the Iranians. "Think about it, they've got family in Iran. They've got family right now in a brutal regime, and they're saying, 'well we appreciate what you did in Iraq, how about coming over here and helping us out in Iran...'"

CLICK HERE for the rest of that thread

7 posted on 03/04/2004 6:31:25 AM PST by RonDog
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To: DoctorZIn
S. California's Iranian diaspora intervenes in US electoral campaign

SMCCDI (Information Service)
Mar 3, 2004

The south Californian Iranian diaspora started, today, its official intervention in the US electoral process.

While several hundreds of Iranians rushed to show their support of President Bush at the occasion of his speech in Los Angeles, tens of other rushed to Orange County in order to protest against John Kerry and its immoral Iranian fund raisers who are pushing for the removal of sanctions against the Islamic republic regime. It's to note that President Bush speech was made at Shrin Auditorium and the Kerry's controversial fund raisers were holding their "gala" at the Ritz Carlton in Dana Point.

Slogans in favor of President Bush and the continuation of pressures on the Oppressive and Terrorist Islamic regime, along with Condemnation of John Kerry's intention to establish relations with the Mullahs and Denouncing the pro-regime lobbyists were shouted during the two demos.

The main Iranian organizers and guests of this evening's controversial "gala" at Ritz Carlton were the very same Faraj-Alai, Susan Akbarpoor and Hassan Namazee who have tried for the last seven years to show a "better" face of the Islamic regime and to use their access to Democrat circles for trying to establish relations between the US and a repressive regime rejected by most Iranians.

Ritz Carlton at Dana Point has often been used by these controversial Iranians who are rejected by most Iranian-Americans for pushing their immoral agenda. The resort was the scene, in year 2000, of a noisy demo when the Islamic regime's FM made his speech.

Speaking to the Los Angeles based "Voice of Iran" (KRSI), Aryo Pirouznia of SMCCDI, condemned, this afternoon, the "immoral actions of the few well known Iranians who are closing eyes on the plight of their countrymen and are using their position to gain support of a blood thristy regime".

"It's the duty of any respectable Iranian to rush showing support of President Bush and to reject the pro-regime's lobbyist's shameful actions" he added.
12 posted on 03/04/2004 8:02:20 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
US Seeking Common Stance Towards Iran

March 03, 2004
The Financial Times
Roula Khalaf and Stephen Fidler

Washington will not press next week to refer Iran to the United Nations Security Council at a meeting of the governing board of the UN's nuclear watchdog, in spite of Iran's failure last year to come clean on all aspects of its uranium enrichment programme.

According to a senior US administration official, the board of the International Atomic Energy Agency meeting in Vienna will focus on the success of Libya's disarmament rather than on Iran's nuclear controversy.

Although the US has consistently adopted a hard line over Iran's nuclear programme, the official said it would co-operate with European governments that have favoured a more moderate approach. "We are very determined . . . that Iran gets no perception that there is any difference among us about the need to hold Iran's feet to the fire," the US official said.

Iran would face increased international pressure if the issue was referred to the UN. "The United States is not going to seek to move it to the Security Council," the official said.

In a report last week to the IAEA board, Mohamed ElBaradei, director-general, said Iran's omission of any reference to its possession of the so-called P-2 centrifuge design drawings and related research and testing activities was "a matter of serious concern". It ran counter to Iran's declaration in October, which was supposed to be comprehensive.

The report outlined other undeclared activity, including the secret production of polonium, a radioactive element that can be used in triggers of thermonuclear weapons.

Tehran, however, has moved quickly to ensure the support of European governments in Vienna next week by telling the IAEA that it has now agreed to European demands for a fuller suspension of its uranium enrichment programme.

Britain, France and Germany struck a deal with Tehran in October that allowed for more intrusive inspections of Iranian nuclear sites and for the suspension of uranium enrichment.

The agreement was threatened by Iran's insistence on a narrow definition of the suspension. According to the IAEA, however, Iran has now agreed to halt the assembly and testing of centrifuges and the domestic manufacture of centrifuge components.

The US official said he was comfortable with the tactical differences between the Europeans and the US as long as the ultimate objective - a complete cessation of Iranian enrichment activities - remained the same.

"The danger is [that] the greater the length of time that is bought, the more progress the Iranians are making in their clandestine weapons programme," the official said. Iran insists its nuclear programme is for peaceful purposes.

The US is seeking to have Libya referred by next week's meeting to the Security Council for its past non-compliance with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty to establish a precedent.

But the official expected the resolution would also praise Libya's decision to abandon weapons of mass destruction programmes.
13 posted on 03/04/2004 8:03:45 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Gadhafi's Mea Culpa on Arms, Terror

March 04, 2004
United Press International
Kenneth R. Timmerman

SIRTE, Libya -- In a turnabout from 35 years of hostility to the West, Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi told delegates at the opening of the Libyan People's National Congress in this seaside resort town Tuesday that his government had renounced terrorism and weapons of mass destruction and declared that "a new era has started" of openness and cooperation with the United States.

In an address to the nation's top elected leaders as well as seven members of the U.S. House of Representatives, the Libyan leader gave the first detailed public account of the reasons behind his surprise announcement on Dec. 19 that Tripoli was prepared to abandon its hitherto secret nuclear-weapons program.

He also detailed Libya's extensive support for insurgencies, including the Irish Republican Army, South West African People's Organization (SWAPO) and the African National Congress, while pledging an end to that era.

"We have guests from countries that have launched wars against us, and this pleases us," said Col. Gadhafi, in a nod to the U.S. congressman who had addressed the gathering just minutes before the Libyan leader appeared. "We are grateful to them for coming, but now the Libyan people shall hear the meaning of this."

Col. Gadhafi spent close to 90 minutes telling his story to the People's Congress, many of whom later said they heard the details for the first time.

"There were stories in the press and rumors that Libya might have a secret nuclear program," Prime Minister Shokri Ghanem told UPI after the speech, "but no one really knew for sure."

And although "people knew officially that we supported liberation movements" in the past, no Libyan government official had come out with such a frank account as Col. Gadhafi had.

"No one separated Libya from the world community," Col. Gadhafi insisted. "Libya voluntarily separated itself from others" by its actions.

"No one has imposed sanctions on us or punished us. We have punished ourselves." The irony, Col. Gadhafi stated repeatedly, was "all these things were done for the sake of others."

In a brutally self-critical account of Libya's past support for radical movements worldwide, Col. Gadhafi concluded that the country had paid a high price for its adventures.

"Libya helped African nations" as they were breaking away from former colonial powers, "and we made other countries view Libya as an enemy."

Libya helped the Palestinians, and now "the Palestinian president enters the White House. And we tell [Yasser] Arafat we oppose America because of you? How can [Arafat] enter the White House and we not improve our relations with the United States?"

Because of the changing circumstances in the world, where former enemies have become partners, if not friends, Col. Gadhafi said, "we decided to review our decisions, and concluded that we had isolated ourselves from the rest of the world."

"If the Palestinians can recognize Israel, how can we not recognize that country?" he asked. "We cannot be more Palestinian than the Palestinians themselves." The liberation struggles that Libya had supported "are finished, the battle is finished ... Now people are shaking hands. So should only we stay enemies?"

Turning to his previously secret nuclear-weapons program, he noted that Libya, like many developing nations, had sought to acquire nuclear weapons "without really thinking against whom we would use it."

"But today ... it becomes a problem to have a nuclear bomb.

"At the time, it was maybe the fashion to have a nuclear bomb. Today, you have no enemy. Who's the enemy?" he asked.

"Yes, there was such a program," Col. Gadhafi said of Libya's nuclear-weapons effort. Libya chose to declare it to the United States and Britain and seek their help in dismantling it "because it's in our own interest and security."

When the American teams came secretly last year to Libya to begin verifying its declarations, they asked why Tripoli had not divulged the program before. "Because now there are new realities. We are adapting to the new realities," he said.

At another point, Col. Gadhafi said, "We got rid of it. It was a waste of time; it cost too much money." He called on all countries to "get rid of their [weapons of mass destruction]," naming the United States, Russia, China, India and Pakistan, but not Israel, which is not a declared nuclear-weapons state.

Turning to the United States, the Libyan leader said he was hoping for technology to help develop his country's economy, as well as joint ventures with U.S. firms. "We can be friends because we are not enemies anymore," he said.

"We were part of history tonight," Rep. Curt Weldon, Pennsylvania Republican, who led the seven-member congressional delegation, told UPI. "Colonel Gadhafi's statements were unequivocal. There were no ifs, ands or buts."

Rep. Solomon P. Ortiz, Texas Democrat, said Col. Gadhafi had shown political courage. "I have lots of respect and admiration for a man who publicly admits his mistakes. It takes a lot of guts to say what he said in front of all these people. But now, he must live up to it."

In his colorful presentation, Col. Gadhafi frequently sounded the theme that nuclear weapons and terrorism were no longer a guarantor of security, but a security risk. Having publicly abandoned its weapons and opened its nuclear sites to international inspections, Libya had enhanced its security, not diminished it, he said.

"If there is any aggression against Libya now, the whole world will come to defend Libya," he said. "Yesterday, that was not the case."

The U.S. congressmen applauded Col. Gadhafi when he spoke of his desire to build a strong new relationship with the United States, and were upbeat about the prospects for bilateral cooperation.

"At first, I was just listening to the speech, but what he was saying was so amazing that I started writing it down so I could report to my constituents," said Rep. Susan A. Davis, California Democrat. "I took 24 pages of notes."

"I thought it was very sincere and well thought out and vigorously pleaded," said Rep. Chris Chocola, Indiana Republican. The United States "should accept his posture, but trust and verify."

The U.S. government has commended Libya for its cooperation in disclosing and dismantling its ballistic missiles and chemical and nuclear weapons. "The Libyans are now waiting to see if we are going to come through, or whether we just wanted to get the weapons out," Mr. Weldon said.

In recounting his earlier relations with the United States, Col. Gadhafi pointed out that when he asked the United States to abandon its military bases in Libya, the army left "and we were still friends."

"The incredible thing about being here is to hear a former antagonist of our country say, 'What in the world was I thinking when I took on a superpower?' " said Rep. Sylvestre Reyes, Texas Democrat. "I thought it was an incredible historic moment. This could potentially redefine our relations with Africa, and potentially with the most conflicted part of the world, which is the Middle East."

"If I had not been here and had Chairman Weldon or Congressman Ortiz tell me about it, I would not have believed it," he added.

Mr. Weldon had led the first bipartisan congressional delegation to Libya from Jan. 25 to 27 and had met with the Libyan leader for more than two hours. He told Mr. Ghanem, the prime minister, at the time that he intended to return in the near future.

Sen. Joseph R. Biden Jr., Delaware Democrat and ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, had been invited to address the People's Congress with Mr. Weldon, but previously unscheduled floor votes kept him in Washington until late Tuesday evening.
14 posted on 03/04/2004 8:05:02 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Top U.S. official: Iran Hiding Nuclear Weapons Program

March 04, 2004

LISBON - A top U.S. official accused Iran on Thursday of concealing a nuclear weapons program, and said international pressure must be kept up to make Tehran reveal it.

John Bolton, Undersecretary of State for arms control and international security, said the United States, its European allies and other countries on the board of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) were determined eventually to force Iran to come clean about its atomic weapons program.

"We are not going to reduce the pressure on Iran," Bolton told a news conference. "We think the pressure they've been under has been critical to their revealing the pieces about their nuclear program that they already have revealed."

Bolton, a well-known hawk in the Washington administration, confirmed the United States would not seek to have the IAEA, the UN nuclear watchdog, report Iran to the UN Security Council, a move that could lead to sanctions.

But he declared: "We think the Iranians are still trying to conceal a clandestine weapons program, and that's why it remains a grave concern to us."

IAEA chief Mohamed ElBaradei has declined to say whether the IAEA board would censure Iran at a March 8 meeting, but said this week Tehran was cooperating better with global non-proliferation efforts.

He voiced confidence that Iran would make good on a pledge to suspend uranium enrichment activities. Tehran insists its nuclear effort is purely to generate electricity.

Bolton was in Lisbon for a two-day meeting of 14 countries that are part of the Proliferation Security Initiative. Canada, Norway and Singapore are attending for the first time.
15 posted on 03/04/2004 8:06:28 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Bush: Regimes of North Korea and Iran are Challenging the Peace

March 03, 2004
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary

"Our future also depends on America's leadership in this world. The momentum of freedom in our time is strong, but we still face serious dangers. Al Qaeda is wounded, but not broken. Terrorists are testing our will in Afghanistan and Iraq. Regimes of North Korea and Iran are challenging the peace. If America shows weakness and uncertainty in this decade, the world will drift toward tragedy. This will not happen on my watch."

Remarks by the President at Bush-Cheney 2004 Reception
The Shrine Auditorium
Los Angeles, California

THE PRESIDENT: Thank you all very much. Thanks for coming. (Applause.) Thank you all for coming. Appreciate you coming. Please be seated. Thanks for the warm welcome. It is great to be back in Los Angeles. I'm thankful you all are here.

I'm aware that they handed out the Oscars last Sunday night. "Terminator 3" didn't win any. (Laughter.) But the star of the movie had a pretty good year. (Applause.) I know he's new to politics, but he is getting used to all the lights and the cameras. (Applause.) I used to think my brother, Jeb, was the coolest governor. (Applause.) By electing Arnold Schwarzenegger, the voters of California have shown that no party can take this state for granted. (Applause.)

The Vice President and I are going to be spending some quality time in the state of California. With your help, we're going to make California part of a nationwide victory in November of '04. (Applause.)

Speaking of the Vice President, he's doing a fine job. The country has had no finer Vice President than Dick Cheney. (Applause.) Mother may have a second opinion. (Laughter.)

It's good to see the Desert Moms here. (Applause.) Those are the ones who didn't go through the background check. (Laughter.) But recently, Laura was in the desert with the Moms. (Applause.) And she sends her best to not only the Moms, but all the folks here. I'm really proud of Laura. She is a fabulous First Lady and a great wife. (Applause.)

I want to thank my friend, Brad Freeman, who has been a loyal friend. He's the state finance chairman here in California. I want to thank my friend, Gerry Parsky, who's the state campaign general chairman. I want to thank my friend, Mercer Reynolds, from Cincinnati, Ohio, who is the chairman of the Bush-Cheney Reelect Campaign. I appreciate the fact that Bill Simon is here, and his wife, Cindy. I want to thank them for having served. (Applause.)

I want to thank all the grassroots activists who are here. (Applause.) There you go. I appreciate my friend, Rabbi Marvin Hier, who gave the blessing. He has a wonderful heart. It sets an incredibly important tone for the country. (Applause.) I want to thank Art Yoon, who's the Mayor Pro Tem of Hermosa Beach, for leading the pledge.

But most of all, I want to thank you all for being our friend. Thank you for helping us. (Applause.) Thank you for getting ready for this campaign.

Last night, I placed a call to Senator Kerry. I told him I was looking forward to a spirited campaign. I congratulated him on his victory. This should be an interesting debate on the issues. He spent two decades in Congress; he's built up quite a record. (Laughter.) In fact, Senator Kerry has been in Washington long enough to take both sides on just about every issue. (Applause.)

The voters will have a very clear choice this year between keeping the tax relief that is moving this economy forward, or putting the burden of higher taxes back on the American people. It's a choice between an America that leads the world with strength and confidence, or an America that is uncertain in the face of danger. (Applause.) I'm ready for this campaign. (Applause.) I look forward to setting the alternative squarely before the American people.

We've achieved great things the past three years. But most importantly, we have a positive vision for the years ahead; a positive vision for winning the war against terror and extending peace and freedom. (Applause.) A positive vision for creating jobs and promoting opportunity; a positive vision for compassion here at home. We'll leave no doubt where we stand, and we will win on the 2nd of November. (Applause.)

The last three years have brought serious challenges, and we have given serious answers. We came to office with a stock market in decline, an economy heading into recession. We delivered historic tax relief, and now our economy is the fastest growing of any industrialize nation. (Applause.)

We confronted corporate criminals that cost people their jobs and their savings. So we passed strong corporate reforms and made it clear we will not tolerate dishonesty in the boardrooms of America. (Applause.)

We saw war and grief arrive on a quiet September morning. So we pursued the terrorist enemy across the world. We captured or killed many of the key leaders of the al Qaeda network. And the rest of them will learn there is no cave or hole deep enough to hide from American justice. (Applause.)

We confronted the dangers of state-sponsored terror, and the spread of weapons of mass destruction. So we ended the two most violent and dangerous regimes on Earth. We freed over 50 million people. And once again, America is proud to lead the armies of liberation. (Applause.)

When Dick Cheney and I came to Washington, we found a military that was underfunded and under-appreciated. So we gave our military the resources and respect they deserve. (Applause.) And, today, no one in the world can question the skill and the strength and the spirit of the United States military. (Applause.)

When we came to office, people had gotten used to gridlock, and old problems were used to score political points. Old problems were politicized and debated and then just passed on from year to year. But we came to Washington to get things done. We passed major reforms to raise the standards in our public schools. We passed reforms in Medicare to get prescription drugs and choices to our seniors. We have chosen to lead, and we have delivered results for the American people. (Applause.)

It is the President's job to confront problems, not to pass them on to future Presidents and future generations. (Applause.) A President needs to step up, make the hard decisions, keep his commitments -- and that is exactly how I will continue to lead our country. (Applause.)

Great events will turn on this election. The man who sits in the Oval Office will set the course of the war on terror, and the direction of our economy. The security and prosperity of America are at stake. My opponent hasn't offered much in the way of strategies to win the war, or policies to expand our economy. So far, all we hear from that side is a lot of old bitterness and partisan anger. Anger is not an agenda for the future of America. (Applause.) My administration has taken on the big issues with optimism and resolve and determination, and we stand ready to lead this nation for four more years. (Applause.)

A big issue for every family in America is the federal tax burden. With the largest tax relief since Ronald Reagan was President, we've left more money in the hands that earned it. By spending and investing and helping create new jobs, the American people have used their money far better than the government would have. (Applause.) Because we acted, our economy is growing stronger. The economy grew in the second half of 2003 at the fastest rate in nearly 20 years. Productivity is high; business investment is rising; interest rates and inflation are low; home ownership is the highest rate ever; manufacturing is increasing. We've added 336,000 new jobs over the last five months. The tax relief we passed is working. (Applause.)

My opponent has plans for those tax cuts. He wants to take them away. And he will use that money to expand the federal government. I have a better idea -- to keep this economy growing and to create jobs, the tax cuts must be permanent. (Applause.)

And we must do more to keep the economy growing. We need to maintain fiscal discipline in Washington, D.C. We need to protect small business owners and employees from frivolous lawsuits and needless regulation. (Applause.) We need to help control the costs of health care by passing federal medical liability reform. (Applause.) We need to continue to open up markets for America's farmers and ranchers and entrepreneurs and manufacturers. We need to pass sound energy legislation to modernize the electricity system and make our country less dependent on foreign sources of energy. (Applause.)

My opponent talks about job creation, too, but he's against every one of these job-creating measures. Empty talk about jobs and economic isolation won't get anyone hired. The way to create jobs is our pro-growth, pro-entrepreneur agenda. (Applause.)

This economy of ours is going through a time of change, and we're helping people to gain the skills and security to make a good living. All skills start with education. So I worked with Congress to pass the No Child Left Behind Act. This is a good law that is challenging the soft bigotry of low expectations. It's a law that is bringing higher standards and accountability to every public school so that not one single child is left behind. (Applause.)

And there's more to do. We have a plan to help high school students who fall behind in reading and math. We have a plan to help community colleges train workers for the industries that are creating the most new jobs. You see, this administration understands clearly that education is the gateway to a hopeful future, and that gate must be open to all Americans. (Applause.)

We're also working to promote an ownership society in America in which more people own their own homes and build their own savings. We want more people owning their own small businesses. We want people to own and manage their own health care plans. We want younger workers to be able to own and manage their own retirement under Social Security. (Applause.)

I understand this, that when people have solid assets, they gain independence and security and dignity and more control over their own future. I believe in private property so much, I want everybody to have some in America. (Applause.)

On issue after issue, the American people have a clear choice. My opponent is against personal retirement accounts. He's against putting patients in charge of Medicare. He's against tax relief. He seems to be against every idea that gives Americans more authority, more choices, and more control over our own lives. It's the same old Washington mind-set: They'll give the orders, and you will pay the bills. I've got news for the Washington crowd: America has gone beyond that way of thinking, and we're not going back. (Applause.) I trust the people of this country. I trust the people to make the best decisions for their own money, for their own health, for their own retirement.

Our future also depends on America's leadership in this world. The momentum of freedom in our time is strong, but we still face serious dangers. Al Qaeda is wounded, but not broken. Terrorists are testing our will in Afghanistan and Iraq. Regimes of North Korea and Iran are challenging the peace. If America shows weakness and uncertainty in this decade, the world will drift toward tragedy. This will not happen on my watch. (Applause.) This nation is strong and confident in the cause of freedom. And, today, no friend or enemy doubts the word of the United States of America. (Applause.)

America and our allies gave an ultimatum to the terror regime in Afghanistan. The Taliban chose defiance, and the Taliban are no longer in power. (Applause.) America and our allies gave an ultimatum to the terror regime in Iraq. The dictator chose defiance -- the dictator now sits in a prison cell. (Applause.) September the 11th, 2001, taught a lesson I will never forget: America must confront threats before they fully materialize. (Applause.)

In Iraq, my administration looked at the intelligence information and we saw a threat. Members of Congress looked at the intelligence and they saw a threat. The United Nations Security Council looked at the intelligence and it saw a threat. The previous administration and Congress looked at the intelligence and made regime change in Iraq the policy of our country. In 2002, the United Nations Security Council yet again demanded a full accounting of Saddam Hussein's weapons programs. As he had for over a decade, Saddam Hussein refused to comply. So we had a choice to make: either to take the word of a madman, or take action to defend America and the world. Faced with that choice, I will defend America every time. (Applause.) Thank you.

My opponent admits that Saddam Hussein was a threat. He just didn't support my decision to remove Saddam from power. Maybe he was hoping Saddam would lose the election in Iraq. (Laughter and applause.) We showed the dictator and a watching world that America means what it says. Because our coalition acted, Saddam's torture chambers are closed. (Applause.) Because we acted, Saddam's weapons programs are ended forever. Because we acted, nations like Libya have gotten the message and renounced their own weapons programs. (Applause.) Because we acted, an example of democracy is rising at the very heart of the Middle East. Because we acted, the world is more free, and America is more secure. (Applause.)

We still face thugs and terrorists in Iraq who would rather go on killing the innocent than accept the advance of liberty. They know that a free Iraq will be a major defeat in the cause of terror. This coalition of killers is trying to shake our will. They don't understand America. America will never be intimated by thugs and assassins. (Applause.) We are aggressively striking the terrorists in Iraq. We're on the offensive. We'll defeat them there so we don't have to face them in our own country. (Applause.)

We're calling on other nations to help Iraq to build a free society. A free Iraq will make us all more safe. We're standing with the Iraqi people as they assume more of their own defense and move toward self-government. These are not easy tasks, but they are essential tasks. We will finish what we have begun. We will win this essential victory in the war on terror. (Applause.)

On national security, Americans have the clearest possible choice. My opponent says he approves of bold action in the world, but only if other countries don't object. (Laughter.) I'm all for united action, and so are the 34 coalition partners in Iraq right now. Yet America must never outsource America's national security decisions to leaders of other countries. (Applause.)

Some are skeptical that the war on terror is really a war at all. My opponent said the war on terror is "far less of a military operation and far more of an intelligence-gathering, law enforcement operation." I disagree. Our nation followed this approach after the World Trade Center was bombed in 1993. The matter was handled in the courts and thought by some to be settled -- but the terrorists were still training in Afghanistan, plotting in other nations, and drawing up more ambitious plans.

After the chaos and carnage of September the 11th, it is not enough to serve our enemies with legal papers. (Applause.) With those attacks, the terrorists and their supporters declared war on the United States of America, and war is what they got. (Applause.)

At bases across our country and the world, I've had the privilege of meeting with the men and women of our military. These good folks are defending our country. They're sacrificing for our security. I've seen their great decency and their unselfish courage. I can assure you, ladies and gentlemen, the cause of freedom is in good hands. (Applause.)

This nation is prosperous and strong, yet, we need to remember that our greatest strength is in the hearts and souls of our citizens. We're strong because of the values we try to live by: courage and compassion, reverence and integrity. We're strong because of the institutions that help give us direction and purpose: families and schools and religious congregations. These values and institutions are fundamental to our lives and they deserve the respect of our government. We stand for the fair treatment of faith-based groups so they can receive federal support for the works of compassion and healing. We will not stand for government discrimination against people of faith. (Applause.)

We stand for welfare reforms that require work and strengthen marriage, which have helped millions of Americans find independence and dignity. We will not stand for any attempt to weaken those reforms and to send people back into lives of dependence. (Applause.) We stand for a culture of life in which every person counts and every person matters. We will not stand for the treatment of any life as a commodity to be experimented upon, exploited or cloned. (Applause.)

We stand for the confirmation of judges who strictly and faithfully interpret the law. (Applause.) We will not stand for judges who undermine democracy by legislating from the bench and try to remake the culture of America by court order. (Applause.)

We stand for a culture of responsibility in America. We're changing the culture of America from one that has said, if it feels good, do it, and if you've got a problem, blame somebody else, to a culture in which each of us understands we are responsible for the decisions we make in life. (Applause.) If you are fortunate enough to be a mother or a father, you're responsible for loving your child with all your heart. (Applause.) If you're worried about the quality of the education in which you live, you're responsible for doing something about it. (Applause.) If you're a CEO in corporate America, you have a responsibility to tell the truth to your shareholders and your employees. (Applause.) And in this new responsibility society, each of us is responsible for loving our neighbor just like we would like to be loved ourselves. (Applause.)

For all Americans, these years in our history will always stand apart. There are quiet times in the life of a nation when little is expected of its leaders. This is not one of those times. You and I are living in a period when the stakes are high and the challenges are difficult, a time when resolve is needed.

None of us will ever forget that week when one era ended and another began. On September the 14th, 2001, I stood in the ruins of the Twin Towers. I remember a lot about that day. I remember the workers in hard hats who were shouting, "Whatever it takes." I remember the guy who pointed at me and said, "Don't let me down." As we all did that day, these men and women searching through the rubble took it personally. I took it personally. I have a responsibility that goes on. I will never relent in bringing justice to our enemies. I will defend the security of America, whatever it takes. (Applause.)

In these times, I've also been a witness to the character of this nation. Not so long ago, some had their doubts about the American character, our capacity to meet serious challenges, our capacity to serve a cause greater than self-interest. But Americans have given their answer. I've seen the unselfish courage of our troops. I've seen the heroism of Americans in the face of danger. I've seen the spirit of service and compassion renewed in our country. We've all seen our nation unite in common purpose when it mattered most.

We will need all of these qualities for the work ahead. We have a war to win, and the world is counting on us to lead the cause of freedom and peace. We have a duty to spread opportunity to every part of America. This is the work that history has set before us. We welcome it. And we know that for our country, the best days lie ahead.

God bless you all. Thank you all. (Applause.)
16 posted on 03/04/2004 8:18:32 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Famous young movie editor dies from torture

SMCCDI (Information Service)
Mar 4, 2004

A famous young film editor died of his wounds inflicted during torture after the unsuccesful attempt of doctors to save his life.

Ardeshir Afshinzadeh, aged 25, passed away in Tajrish hospital after his transfer from the regime's paramilitaries prison following his arrest in the demos that rocked the capital at the occasion of the Tabou breaking popular gatherings made during the mourning ritual of Ashura.

Several internal organs of the victims had been smashed due to an intense beating made by Hezbollahi thugs who had stated to the doctors that Afshinzadeh's wounds have resulted as he tried to escape by jumping from a 5th floor window.

It's to note that non of the victims bones were broken during this alleged escape and that his clothes were smelling heavily alchool while no trace of such substance was found in his body.
19 posted on 03/04/2004 8:51:35 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn

20 posted on 03/04/2004 2:12:01 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
DoctorZin Note: Nuclear Proliferation is becoming a Major Problem.

Nigerian army 'offered nukes' [Guess who is offering them...]

The Australian ^ | March 04, 2004
Posted on 03/04/2004 2:03:30 AM PST by Piefloater
21 posted on 03/04/2004 2:15:33 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Pro-reform Party Announces Strategy After Majlis Elections

March 04, 2004
BBC Monitoring
BBC Monitoring Middle East

Tehran -- Leading Islamic Iran Participation Front (IIPF) issued a communique on Wednesday [3 March], announcing the party's strategy after the 7th Majlis elections.

The IIPF communique reads, "This organization is now focusing on other phases of its activities, aimed at the establishment of democracy."

The IIPF adds in the communique, a copy of which was faxed to IRNA on Wednesday night, "The IIPF that has shouldered the tough political and social burden of reforms during the recent years, is more than ever before concerned about the reforms' status today, and tomorrow."

The communique says the Participation Front has considered the main concern for Iran yesterday, today, and tomorrow, the establishment of grass root democracy, arguing, "In order to pass through the tough path towards the full establishment of democracy in Iran, we need to rely on shared wisdom of the Iranians, shared criticism, and joint practical moves."

The political front added, "The IIPF still believes paving the path towards comprehensive grandeur and advancement of Iran would be possible only through proceeding towards the establishment of democracy and emphasizing on the need to push forth the reforms movement."

The writers of the communique believe, "Despite all hardships this front has endured and all accusations it has suffered from, the IIPF still considers being involved in civil and political activities as its natural right, and will keep on pursuing its objectives through all legally approved ways."

The Front adds, "IIPF will do all its best not to permit the revolution's ideals, and Islamic Republic's achievements be robbed under narrow-minded interpretations."

Elsewhere in the communique the IIPF adds, "this organization, while expanding its civil and political activities, will prioritize political criticism for all deviations."

"We will focus on devising our short term and long term policies in all possible fields," adds the communique.

Arguing that today we can realize the dynamism and vivaciousness of the reforms movement more than ever before, the IIPF has stressed, elections, rather than insisting on its traditional conservative stands has resorted to reformist mottoes is further proof for the dynamism of the reforms movement, that is irrevocable."

The writers of the communique believe, "It goes without saying that the political current that has for many years opposed the reforms movement and bitterly criticized the reformers has now adopted mottoes in line with the reforms, the nation, too, will not yield to anything short of their keeping their promises in pushing forth plans in that line."

The IIPF argues, "The core of those mottoes is abiding by the laws, denouncing aggression, guaranteeing the political freedoms, strengthening the civil organizations, refraining from fomenting tension at regional and international scenes, safeguarding the human rights, justice and equal rights for the whole nation, and briefly speaking, good governance, and arranging for an ideal society."

The political front has elsewhere in the communique reflected its evaluation of the 7th Majlis elections, offering the characteristics of a free and fair election, regardless of who its winners might be.

The IIPF has expressed certainty that by propagating lenience and tolerance, the "so called winners of the elections are after conquering the presidential elections, too, and thus after the exertion of their hegemony over the executive body as well."

The IIPF has predicted that in pushing forth that strategy, it is quite probable the winners of the Majlis elections might resort to creating new obstacles on the way of political and cultural activities, student and university movements, freedom of the press, parties, and civil organization, and barring the path of the government in performing its legally approved tasks.

Text of report in English by Iranian news agency IRNA

Source: IRNA news agency, Tehran, in English 2213 gmt 3 Mar 04
22 posted on 03/04/2004 2:17:47 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
EP Committee Hears Nobel Peace Prize Winner Shirin Ebadi

March 04, 2004
European Parliament
European Union Press Releases

Shirin Ebadi, the 2003 Nobel Peace Prize winner, was the guest on Wednesday of a joint meeting of Parliament's Foreign Affairs and Women's Rights Committees. MEPs greeted her with a thunderous round of applause, after which Ms Ebadi gave a speech setting out her views on the role of Islam in democracy, the situation of women in Iran and the parliamentary elections of 20 February, which are expected to result in a big victory for conservatives.

"It is unfortunate that a large number of candidates were declared ineligible", she said. "By signing up to the Charter of Human Rights, the Islamic Republic of Iran had stated its intention of abiding by its obligations. Any signatory country undertakes to respect individual rights through participation in free elections", she added. Several MEPs voiced disappointment at this setback to democratisation in Iran. One of them was Michael Gahler (EPP-ED, D), who asked "How can the European Parliament pursue dialogue effectively while also supporting reform?". Bob van den Bos (ELDR, NL) maintained that the Council of Guardians of the Revolution was responsible for manipulating the elections. "How can we continue talks with people who are utterly manipulated by the regime?" he asked Ms Ebadi.

"When Mr Khatami was elected, the flower of democracy flourished. It is perhaps our fault that we did not cherish that flower", she told MEPs. She then urged the European Parliament to adopt a report on Iran "provided you monitor events and provide for sanctions" if Iran fails to implement any commitments it gives. She also stressed that negotiations, rather than boycotts or embargoes, were the best way for Europe to help democratisation in Iran. "But negotiations must have a purpose and not be simply limited to maintaining dialogue".

Turning to the relationship between Islam and human rights, Shirin Ebadi set out her position straight away: "Islam is a religion which protects women's rights", she said, explaining that it was "patriarchal culture" that lay at the root of many social problems. "This tribal culture does not believe in equality between human beings", she argued. "Women are the victims but they are also the vehicles of this culture. Every violent man was brought up by a woman. They are therefore also responsible for transmitting this pernicious disease", she said. "I see only one solution: education".

The Nobel Prize winner told MEPs that progress had been made on women's and children's rights, although sex discrimination still existed under Iranian law. The law on child custody following a divorce had been amended last month, both to protect more strongly the right of women to look after their children and also to take account of children's emotional needs. "To improve their lot, Iranian women must take further action", she said. But she also warned against easy optimism, since laws banning torture and discrimination against women, which had been approved by the Iranian parliamentary assembly, had then been rejected by the Council of Guardians of the Revolution. According to Mrs Ebadi, "The attitude of this Council is worrying".

Edward Mcmillan-Scott, (EPP-ED, UK) wondered whether Iranian women's organisations would accept EU funding to promote democracy. "This is the only funding that does not require consent of the host government when it is spent", he pointed out. Shirin Ebadi replied "Don't give us financial help because we'll be accused of being spies! We need your spiritual aid but not your financial help".

25.02.2004 Committee on Foreign Affairs, Human Rights, Common Security and Defence Policy

In the chair: Elmar BROK (EPP-ED, D)

Press enquiries:

Joelle Fiss - tel. (32-2) 28 41075 - e-mail:

Katarzyna Prandota - tel. (32-2) 28 31051 - e-mail:
23 posted on 03/04/2004 2:18:20 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
U.N. Nuke Watchdog Prepares Iran, Libya Resolutions

March 04, 2004
Louis Charbonneau

VIENNA -- Member states of the U.N. atomic watchdog are in intense backroom talks to draft a resolution criticizing Iran for failing to declare sensitive parts of its nuclear program in its declaration last year, diplomats said.

Monday, the International Atomic Energy Agency's (IAEA) Board of Governors begins a week-long meeting to discuss the nuclear programs of Iran and Libya and other atomic issues.

Although Washington has long accepted there was little support for a resolution finding Iran in "non-compliance" with the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) -- which would refer it to Security Council -- Washington wants the board to criticize Tehran in the harshest possible terms, diplomats said.

"We think the Iranians are still trying to conceal a clandestine weapons program, and that's why it remains a grave concern to us," U.S. undersecretary of state for arms control and international security John Bolton told reporters in Lisbon.

Bolton confirmed Washington was not seeking a non-compliance resolution, but said Washington was "not going to reduce the pressure on Iran."

Tehran, which says its atomic program is peaceful, wants to avoid any criticism. Diplomats from IAEA member states said Iranian officials have been lobbying board members to have the Iranian nuclear program removed from the board's agenda.

How to mix some praise with criticism in the resolution will be the focus of haggling during the drafting process, they said.

"Iran has been cooperating more," a non-aligned diplomat said, referring to IAEA chief Mohamed ElBaradei's comments from earlier this week in Brussels. "A resolution should say that."

Last week, France, Britain and Germany promised Tehran they would try to prevent the passage of any resolution on Iran in exchange for its agreement to a total suspension of activities related to the enrichment of uranium. But several diplomats said the three countries' view was unrealistic.

"In the case of Iran, there must be a resolution," a Western diplomat told Reuters. "Not to have a resolution on Iran would be to ignore the IAEA report."


ElBaradei's latest report said Iran withheld information on research and development in the advanced "P2" enrichment centrifuge, which can produce arms-grade uranium at twice the speed of the first-generation "P1" centrifuge.

In its October declaration, which Tehran described at the time as a full and truthful account of its entire program, Iran also did not mention sensitive experiments with plutonium and polonium, a substance that can be used to initiate a chain reaction in a nuclear fission bomb.

"Iran did not make a full and final declaration," said one Western diplomat. "Doubtless there will be more revelations."

In the October dossier, Iran acknowledged keeping its enrichment program secret for 18 years. It later admitted getting help from Pakistani scientists, including the father of Pakistan's atom bomb, Abdul Qadeer Khan, diplomats said.

Diplomats who follow the IAEA say the Libyans deserve much of the credit for the most recent revelations about Iran. They said the Libyans have been providing the IAEA with a wealth of details about the global black market that supplied Iran, Libya and North Korea with potentially arms-related technology.

The United States and Britain are co-sponsoring a resolution that praises Libya's December announcement it would renounce all weapons of mass destruction programs, but notifies the U.N. Security Council of Tripoli's NPT breaches.

Although the Council has the power to impose sanctions, diplomats said the referral of Libya would be "pro forma" and would not call for punitive actions since Libya is cooperating.

(Additional reporting by Ian Simpson in Lisbon)
24 posted on 03/04/2004 2:19:13 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
John Kerry and the War on Terror

Human Events
by Robert Spencer
Posted Mar 4, 2004

When Abraham Lincoln received complaints about the hard-drinking, cigar-smoking General Grant, he responded: "I can't spare this man: he fights." That could be the last word on George W. Bush in 2004.

There are many things that the President has said and done that I don't like. But at least he has some awareness of what's at stake in the war on terror. Since global jihadists want to destroy republican government and the secular societies of the West, anti-terror efforts should enjoy bipartisan support. But instead, they've become a political football.

In an address to the Council on Foreign Relations in December, John Kerry declared: "We have a president who has developed and exalted a strategy of war -- unilateral, preemptive and, in my view, profoundly threatening to America's place in the world and to the safety and prosperity of our own society. Simply put, the Bush administration has pursued the most arrogant, inept, reckless and ideological foreign policy in modern history. . . . The Bush administration should swallow its pride and reverse course."

Reverse course? What that might mean for the war on terror was demonstrated on February 27 in the Philippines, when the Muslim terror group Abu Sayyaf bombed a ferry boat, killing as many as 134 people. Abu Sayyaf may have picked that day for the bombing because it was the day that two members of the group, including its leader's brother, were sentenced to life in prison for the 2000 kidnapping of an American, Jeffrey Schilling. Schilling was held for eight months by Abu Sayyaf, often in body chains, and was tortured.

Remember that kidnapping? No? You're in good company. But Abu Sayyaf has kidnapped and even killed other Americans in the Philippines as well. None of these incidents ever made much of an impression stateside. Before 9/11, Americans tended to slough off overseas terrorist attacks on Americans -- and even on our soldiers, sailors and Marines. Such attacks were merely passing outrages somewhere out there beyond our borders. When Bill Clinton noted them at all, he treated them as criminal matters, to be dealt with by law enforcement officials. Aside from a few cruise missiles here and there, this amounted to very little. And this indifference allowed our enemy to thrive and grow.

It was the Bush Administration that recognized that we are in a war, and began to fight. As part of a global network of Al-Qaeda affiliates and allies, Abu Sayyaf knows that it is one of the ultimate targets.

No doubt, therefore, the Abu Sayyaf guerrillas in Mindanao are wearing Kerry buttons now -- as are the Iranian mullahs. About Iran's recent sham elections, Bush said: "I join many in Iran and around the world in condemning the Iranian regime's efforts to stifle freedom of speech, including the closing of two leading reformist newspapers in the run-up to the election. Such measures undermine the rule of law and are clear attempts to deny the Iranian people's desire to freely choose their leaders. The United States supports the Iranian people's aspiration to live in freedom, enjoy their God-given rights and determine their own destiny."

Kerry? He made no statement. In fact, shortly before the Iranian election his campaign sent an email to Iran's Mehr News Agency which was trumpeted by the Tehran Times as evidence that the Democratic front-runner would, as President, work with the hardline Islamic regime that has trampled upon human rights in Iran since 1979. The email stated that Kerry "believes that collaboration with other countries is crucial to efforts to win the war on terror and make America safer."

Kerry's campaign said that they didn't know how this email message got to Mehr, but by then the damage was done. The mullahs knew what Kerry meant by "collaboration with other countries." The Iranian Ayatollah Mehdi Haeri, who is at odds with the Iranian regime, told Insight magazine that the current Iranian leaders "fear President Bush." Bush's expressions of support for Iranian pro-democracy groups "have given these people the shivers. They think that if Bush is re-elected, they'll be gone. That's why they want to see Kerry elected."

With the war on terror slipping steadily in the polls as an important issue to voters, that's something to think about. When John Kerry says that he wants to reverse course, he gives heart to the forces of international jihad that are bent on destroying America. That's why we may not be able to spare George W. Bush, for all his faults. He fights.

Mr. Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and the author of Onward Muslim Soldiers: How Jihad Still Threatens America and the West (Regnery Publishing -- a HUMAN EVENTS sister company) and Islam Unveiled: Disturbing Questions About the World's Fastest Growing Faith (Encounter Books).
25 posted on 03/04/2004 2:22:01 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
If There Was A Revolution In Iran, Who Would Move Back?

Beverly Hills Iranian Americans talk to Karmel Melamed about what it would take for them to return to Iran.

By Karmel Melamed

After the collapse of Iraqís totalitarian dictatorship earlier this year, local Iranian American residents reflect on the option of returning to Iran should its brutal regime also be toppled in the near future. With the large number of Iranian Americans moving to Beverly Hills over the last 25 years, Iran has become a faded memory for many. The majority of Iranians who came to Beverly Hills in the late 1970s and 1980s believed their stay in the city would be brief during the reign of the Ayatollah in Iran, but little did they know they would become a permanent part of Beverly Hills more than two decades later.


While the U.S.-led war on terrorism is achieving victories and bringing new freedom to Afghanistan and Iraq, Iranian Americans living in Beverly Hills wonder if neighboring Iran is next in line for a regime change.

I would definitely go back to visit because a part of me is there, I spent my teenage life there and you canít take away your roots, said Sima Noble, a salesperson at Beverly Hills BMW.

Noble was one many Iranian American residents who said they initially came to Southern California as college and university students and eventually stayed here when the political situation in Iran took a turn for the worse.

I went to college here back in 1975 because I didn't get accepted to university in Iran, and Iíve stayed here since then, Noble said.

Local Iranians involved in Persian language newspapers, radio stations, and television programs said Iranians in Beverly Hills and all over Southern California are eager to return to Iran for a visit because of nostalgia for their origins.

From what Iíve heard, as soon as the regime changes many [Iranian] people have told me they will take the first flight out to Teheran, said Pari Abasalti, host of a call-in talk show at ìRadio Sedaye Iran, a 24-hour FM radio station based in Beverly Hills.

Abasalti, a former member of the Iranian parliament, said some Iranian Americans like herself who had ties to the late Shah of Iranís government have not traveled to Iran for fear of being imprisoned by Iranís radical Islamic regime.

Of the [Iranian American] people, 99 percent just want to see what has happened to their country, Absalti said. ìI would estimate that more than 50 percent of Iranians in [Southern California] would want to stay in Iran, and the rest would just visit once the regime changes.
Others in the local Iranian media said Iranian Americans living in Beverly Hills would be unlikely to restart their lives in a democratic Iran because of the prosperity they have achieved in the U.S.

In Beverly Hills, 90 percent of the Iranians are rich and they donít plan on going there [Iran] to live; more of those Iranians from the Valley, Los A Ali Limonadi, director and owner of the ìIranian Television (IRTV), a weekly Persian language television programngeles, and Orange County would move back there to live, said.

Many Iranian Americans living in Southern California have already begun traveling to Iran in the last 10 years, said Abasalti, who also heads one of a number of Persian language newspapers in Los Angeles.

A lot people have traveled to Iran and opened exotic businesses; they have offices and factories in Iran, Abasalti said. ìThey stay there for a couple of months to handle their businesses and then come back to the United States for a few months.

Several Iranian Americans working in Beverly Hills said some Iranians in the U.S. would develop new businesses in Iran and spark a large influx of trade between the two countries if the regime is overthrown.

ìI donít think Iranians here will drop everything and go to Iran forever, said Behzad Mahjour, an 15-year owner of a photography studio on Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills. ìIranians are very clever and from statistics I read they are managing over $400 billion dollars in the U.S. and if the regime changes they could take a lot of their business to Iran.

As the Iranian American population in Beverly Hills has grown in the last 25 years, a new generation of Americans of Iranian decent have grown up and gone through the Beverly Hills school system.

A few Iranian Americans residents who were once among the religious minorities in Iran said they would not restart their lives in Iran even if the regime changed because of the persecution they encountered from Iranís fundamentalist Islamic government.

I donít think Iranian Jews would go back to stay there because they have no family and no future there, said Polin Aghaei, a South Tower Drive resident. ìThe revolution gave Iranian Jews the clear message that it was not safe for them to live there.


Southern California political activists and experts on Iran said regime change in Iran in imminent in the coming years because of the tremendous social and political repression the Iranian population has been subjected to by their government.

People [Iranian Americans] are perhaps more hopeful but there is a lot of confusion, said Hossein Ziai, professor and director of Iranian Studies at UCLA.

Ziai, who has been teaching the Persian language at UCLA since 1988, said Iranian Americans in Southern California would make Iran their new homes depending on their personal financial success in the U.S., age, and opportunities available in Iran, and other personal factors.

Some Iranian Americans monitoring activities in Iran said that unlike Iraqis, the Iranian population is more willing to embrace a democratic form of government because of Iranís modernization and previous exposure to Western ideologies.

They [Iranians] are definitely ready for democracy, said Abasalti. ìIt wonít be very difficult because parents in Iran have experienced Western life and have told their children about the freedoms of a democracy.

Those Iranian Americans in contact with their families and friends in Iran, said the majority of Iranians would like to have an elected parliamentary type government in Iran.

When I speak to political activists, they want a secular government and they want everything to be decided by the people in free elections, said Limonadi, who has been in contact with student resistant movements in Iran via telephone and the Internet.

Younger Iranians in Iran have been beaten, imprisoned, or killed for demonstration for more freedom in Iran, Limonadi said.

Limonadi said students living in Iran along with their counterparts in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. have recently begun organizing plans against the Iranian regime and also with Senator Sam Brownback (R-Kansas) in Washington, D.C. for political assistance.

According to those Iranian Americans following the news in Iran, this coming July 6 student opposition groups in Iran will mark the third anniversary of a student uprising by demonstrating in mass numbers in the streets of Tehran.

Former exiled Iranian crown prince Reza Pahlavi, who has been active in promoting democracy in Iran while residing in the U.S., was contacted by the Weekly for this story but declined to comment.


With a formidable Iranian Jewish population in Beverly Hills, the Nessah

Educational and Cultural Center located on South Rexford Drive has been a focal point to as many as 1,000 Iranian Americans in the city who gather for weekend religious services.

I have no idea why Iranian Jews have chosen Beverly Hills, but I do have a theory that usually an immigrant communityís first place of arrival is where they stay to live together, when you're together you feel more secure and I think this was the case for the Iranian Jews, said Rabbi David Shofet, heading the centerís religious services.

Shofet said most of the Iranians in his congregation are uncertain about the political situation in Iran and have been more involved in the continuity of their own traditions since the founding of their organization more than 20 years ago.

As Jews we have learned that it is impossible for us to predict where we can live since our situation has been precarious for the past 2,000 years, Shofet said. America has been the most generous host to us, and we donít really know what will happen in Iran tomorrow.

Other leaders in the Iranian Jewish community said Iranian Jews have chosen to live in Beverly Hills because of the cityís educational opportunities for their children.

Coming from a revolution, you feel more vulnerable. Choosing Beverly Hills by Jews and non-Jews had everything to do with security, said Dariush Fakheri, head of the International Judea Foundation (SIAMAK), an Iranian Jewish organization based in Los Angeles.

Iranian American residents of Beverly Hills were active in the Judea Foundationís 2000 campaign to bring international attention to the plight of 13 Jews who were falsely accused of treason in the Iranian city of Shiraz, said Fakheri.

Ultimately, the Judea Foundationís Iranian American leadership, through the help of the Simon Weisenthal Center, U.S. Congressional figures, and European leaders, was able to pressure the Iranian government from carrying out death sentences for the 13 Jews in Shiraz, said Fakheri.

Other Iranian Americans said some Iranians who have immigrated to Southern California have not been as able to enjoy the prosperity of their fellow countrymen.

There are a lot of Iranian people that are doctors and lawyers, but could not pass the examinations in the U.S. and are not able to do their own work here, said Abasalti. I know people that were generals in Iran and now theyíre working in valet parking.

The Beverly Hills Adult School has aided Iranian residents in the city who wish to learn English through their free English as a second language courses (ESL), a program which is funded by the state.

According to the 2000 U.S. Census Bureau records, more than 6,000 Iranians live in Beverly Hills and approximately 72,000 live in Los Angeles County.

These census figures were disputed by Iranian Americans contacted for this story who said the number of Iranians in Beverly Hills and Southern California was larger since some Iranian Americans failed to register during the 2000 census or identified themselves as Caucasian or Asian rather than Iranian.

After two decades of living in Beverly Hills, Iranian Americans have even become more involved local government. This past March, Iranian American Jimmy Delshad, was elected to the City Council in part as a result of his effort to mobilize the Iranian American vote citywide.


Some Iranian Americans contacted for this story said they were optimistic that a new government and new freedoms were on the horizon for those living in their former homeland.

A great majority of Iranians believe that a change is eminent in the very near future, said Homayoun Hooshiarnejad, editor of Asre Emrooz, a popular Persian language newspaper based in the San Fernando Valley.

Abasalti said those Iranian Americans who would make Iran their new home if the regime should change, will still maintain their strong bonds with the U.S. after living here for more than 20 years.

If they go to Iran, they won't want to lose their ties to the U.S., because they still want to see their friends and family and do business with the United States, Abasalti said.

Various Iranian Americans working and living in the city said the collapse of Iranís current regime would cut off funds the Iranian government gives to many terrorist groups and be a potentially tremendous victory for the U.S. War on Terror.

By removing the Iranian government you could cut off $100 million to terrorist groups like Hamas and those in Lebanon, because Iran right now is the financial root of a lot of terrorist activities around the world, said Mahjour.

Many younger Iranian Americans living in Beverly Hills who were contacted for this story said they felt more American than Iranian, and would find making a permanent transition to Iran an impossibility after growing up in to the city.

America is my home, where my business is at, and it would be hard to restart a new life over there in Iran, said Barry Cohanim, a 24 year-old resident of North Trenton Drive.

Cohanim, who was born in Iran but raised in Beverly Hills, said he would make a one time journey to rediscover his roots in Iran, but preferred to live his life in the U.S.

I would go [to Iran] just to see where I was from and what areas our family lived in, but I wouldnít want to live there, Cohanim said. ìIíve gone to school in Beverly Hills, graduated from Beverly High in 1996, and my whole family lives in the city or nearby. Thereís no point in living in Iran when Iím so connected to this city.

Other younger Iranians said that while they would not move to back to Iran, they would still support any movements in the U.S. or abroad set out to democratize Iran.

We as Iranian Americans canít help but feel a dynamic responsibility to support these legitimate aspirations for democracy and freedom [in Iran], said Sam Yebri, a 22 year-old North Hillcrest Road resident.

Yebri, who was born in Iran and later immigrated to Southern California in 1983 during the Iran-Iraq War, said he would visit a secular and non-hostile Iran in the future but still preferred to start his own family one day in Beverly Hills.

As for Beverly Hills, Yebri said, I could not imagine a better place to live, grow, and raise children."
26 posted on 03/04/2004 3:23:48 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran Ranked at the Bottom of Globalization Index

March 04, 2004
Iran Institute for Democracy
Ramin Parham

Disconnected from an Increasingly Connected World

In an attempt to measure Globalization, The fourth annual A.T. Kearney/FOREIGN POLICY Globalization Index analyses and ranks 62 countries in its 2004 report. The study covers all major regions of the world, encompassing both developed and developing nations. The results are quite enlightening both with regard to the global context, two years after the deadly terrorist attacks on September the 11th 2001 and the downturn of the global economy as a result of events consecutive to 9/11 and to more predictable economic cyclic patterns, and with regard to the specific case of Iran. What follows, is a summary of the report’s methodology and findings. Ranked 62 over 62, the Islamic Republic of Iran, one of the 4 Islamic theocracies of the world along with Mauritania, Pakistan, and the “transitional Islamic state” of Afghanistan, sinks “dead last for the fourth consecutive year …near the bottom in most categories”.

Number of countries analyzed: 62
These countries, including the Islamic Republic of Iran, “account for 96 percent of the world’s gross domestic product (GDP) and 84 percent of the world’s population”.

Data Period:
Annual data for 2002 are used to calculate the index published in March/April 2004.

Data Source:
Sources include “World Development Indicators 2003 (Washington: World Bank); International Financial Statistics Yearbook 2003 (Washington: International Monetary Fund); Balance of Payment Statistics 2003 (Washington: International Monetary Fund); International Telecommunications Union Yearbook of Statistics 2003 (Geneva: International Telecommunication Union); Compendium of Tourism Statistics 2003 (Madrid: World Tourism Organization); The Secure Server Survey 2003 available online from Netcraft; World Factbook 2003 (Washington: Central Intelligence Agency)”.

Categories studied:

1) Cultural Integration:
In an attempt to measure the extent to which a given country is integrated with the global network of circulating cultural products, researchers (two from Singapore University) have focused their attention on "the conduits by which ideas, beliefs, and values are transmitted". These "conduits" are termed "cultural proxies" and "Proxy signifiers" measuring the "extent to which beliefs and values are moving across national boundaries. The most likely proxy, then, would be the vehicles by which culture is most typically transmitted." Although the authors acknowledge that any empirical quantification of "all possible facets of culture" is infeasible, they have nevertheless been able to identify "key indicators" of cultural globalization: 1) "cinematic films"; 2) "television programming" as a less costly way of cultural production and diffusion than Hollywood style feature film making, and, 3) the "volume of imported print publications" including magazines, periodicals, books and so on. These indicators are also said to demonstrate the extent to which the people of any given country can "create a way of looking at the world that is not bound by tradition." Recognizing the difficulty to find reliable and systematic sources of data, GI (Globalization Index) researchers have finally taken into account the only indicator for which systematic data have been available, that is printed materials. Based on this, the normalized calculation of the index has "tallied up the imports and exports" of printed materials divided "by the population size" (normalization). To interpret the results the following guidelines are given:

- "the higher a country is on this index, the more likely an individual in that country is to receive foreign cultural products"; and
- "the higher the dollar value of this index is, the more likely an individual in that nation is to recieve cultural products."

2) Economic Integration:
“Trade, foreign direct investment, portfolio capital flows, and investment income”.

3) Technological Integration:
This is a measure of “connectivity” as determined by the number of Internet users, Internet hosts, and secure servers.

4) Personal Contact:
“International travel and tourism, international telephone traffic, and remittances and personal transfers (including worker remittances, compensation to employees, and other person-to-person and nongovernmental transfers)”.

5) Political Engagement:
Absolute numbers here are given for “Memberships in international organizations, personnel and financial contributions to U.N. Security Council missions, international treaties ratified” and GDP-adjusted “governmental transfers” (sum of credits and debits).

Calculating the Index
“For most variables, each year's inward and outward flows are added, and the sum is divided by the country's nominal economic output (as measured by GDP) or, where appropriate, its population...The resulting data for each given variable are then normalized through a process that assigns values to data points for each year relative to the highest data point that year. The highest data point is valued at one, and all other data points are valued as fractions of one ... Globalization Index scores for every country and year are derived by summing all the indicator scores”.

Global Context at the time of the study

The period of the study, 2002, was in a sense Year One in a post September 11th world. 2002 was also a world of global economic downturn among the causes of which one could take into account the huge productivity gains made during the 1990s as a result of the pervasive penetration of information technology use in all aspects of social life from corporate governance to household connectivity. In their depiction of the global context, the authors of the 2004 GI also point out to:

- the collapse of the World Trade Organization (WTO) meeting in Cancún, Mexico;
- the trading of “diplomatic blows over free trade and the ongoing war on terrorism” between the US and EU;
- the “effective collapse” of the Growth and Stability Pact in the euro zone;
- the internal EU divide over political integration “as Europe's leaders failed to reach consensus on a draft constitution”; and to
- the inability of the UN to overcome the trans-Atlantic divide over the war on Iraq, “the most visible” symbolic failure of “multilateral cooperation”.

Global Results
“Globalization endured in 2002”, the report says, and so, despite a downturn in economic indicators. The resiliency of the globalization process is credited on non-economic such as travel, mobile telephony, and the world wide penetration of the internet:

- “More than 130 million new Internet users came online in 2002, bringing the total to more than 620 million, representing 9.9 percent of the total world population ... the World Wide Web now contains a volume of information that is 17 times larger than the print collections of the U.S. Library of Congress” ... The Middle East remained among the world's least connected areas, but saw the number of Internet users jump by 116 percent
- “International telephone traffic continued to grow, up 9 billion minutes to a total of 135 billion minutes in 2002 ... In 2002, for the first time, the number of mobile phones per capita (“mobidensity”) worldwide exceeded that of main telephone lines...”

Country Results

Integrating Economic, Technological, Political, and Personal data, the 2004 GI Top 10 and Bottom 10 countries are ranked as follow:

Top 10: Ireland, Singapore, Switzerland, Netherlands, Finland, Canada, United States, New Zealand, Austria, Denmark

Bottom 9: Brazil, Kenya, Turkey, Bangladesh, China, Venezuela, Indonesia, Egypt,

“Dead last”: Islamic Republic of Iran
Overall ranking among the 62 countries: 62
Economic ranking: 59/62
Political ranking: 61/62
Technological ranking: 48/62
Personal ranking: 62/62

High on Opiates and Connected to Heroin Lords

Released by the Bureau for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (US Department of State), the International Narcotics Control Strategy Report 2003 gives yet another striking picture of the reality of Iran under the revolutionary theocratic regime.

According to the report:

- The Islamic Republic of Iran is a major transit route for opiates smuggled from Afghanistan and through Pakistan to the Persian Gulf, Turkey, Russia, and Europe.
- Opium addiction in Iran ... is a major social and health problem ...
- About two percent of Iran’s 67.7 million citizens (that is, about 1,354,000 people) [official estimates] ... Other sources ... would add perhaps 500,000-600,000 “casual” users, for a total of perhaps two million ... UNODC estimates that 2.8 percent of the Iranian population over age 15 used opiates in 2001. Only Laos and Russia come close to Iran’s estimated drug abuse ... In 2002, the number of deaths from drug abuse increased by 370 percent ... reflecting a shift in Iran to abuse of heroin, especially intravenous abuse ... Sixty-seven percent of all recorded HIV cases are associated with drug abuse...
- Opiate drug seizures during 2002 in Iran ... were almost 208 metric tons of opium equivalent (Opium Equivalent = Opium +(heroin x 10)+(morphine base x 10), making Iran number one in the world in opiate seizures. Projected drug seizures for 2003, based on nine month figures, were even higher, at 243.6 metric tons of opium equivalent.
- Iran has ratified the 1988 UN Drug Convention, but its laws do not bring it completely into compliance with the Convention ... particularly in the areas of money laundering and controlled deliveries...
- Drug offenses are under the jurisdiction of the Revolutionary Courts ... More than 60 percent of the inmates in Iranian prisons are incarcerated for drug offenses, ranging from use to trafficking. Narcotics-related arrests in Iran during 2002 remained high at 118,819 persons ... Iran has executed more than 10,000 narcotics traffickers in the last decade ...
- Trafficking: The use of human “mules” is on the rise. Individuals and small groups also attempt to cross the border with two to ten kilograms of drugs, in many cases ingested for concealment. Trafficking through Iran's airports also appears to be on the rise.

Attentive readers may add to this, recent reports (ISNA, November 10th 2003) according to which:

- drug seizures in Iran amount to no more that 5% of the narcotics that circulate or transit through the country;
- 8000 drug and prostitution rings are active in Tehran alone;
- in the last 7 years, the average age of prostitutes has dropped from 27 to less than 20 years old;
- 1.8 billion US dollars has been the estimated value of the drug in circulation in the country in 2002-2003, more than six times higher than its value 8 years earlier
- the number of HIV infected Iranians is put at 25000 to 40000, five to eight times higher than official estimates [10 November 2003 (RFE/RL)]
30 posted on 03/04/2004 5:10:18 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn; All
"When there is a demonstration sponsored by the medieval elements in a country like Iran, it is not the German flag that they burn. They do not shout death to Germany. They do not destroy likenesses of the Eiffel Tower or Big Ben. They burn the American flag. They smash likenesses of the American Capitol, and they clearly let us know that we are the ones who are in their sights. So be it.

If we understand that we are the targets, then we must understand we have a special responsibility to act."

I know he's a democrat, but this congressman Andrews is right on.
31 posted on 03/04/2004 5:11:56 PM PST by nuconvert (CAUTION: I'm an acquaintance of someone labelled :"an obstinate supporter of dangerous fantasies")
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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”

33 posted on 03/05/2004 12:03:49 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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