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Iranian Alert -- March 11, 2004 -- IRAN LIVE THREAD --Americans for Regime Change in Iran
The Iranian Student Movement Up To The Minute Reports ^ | 3.11.2004 | DoctorZin

Posted on 03/10/2004 11:59:56 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.

DoctorZin


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 03/10/2004 11:59:57 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 03/10/2004 12:01:53 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
ATTENTION!

Starting March 11, 2004 I will be conducting a test.

I will be starting the thread at midnight Tehran time (11:30am PST).

I will be interested in any comments on this. Please send these comments to me privately.

DoctorZin
3 posted on 03/10/2004 12:02:32 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
IAEA Text Hits Iran Nuke Secrecy

March 09, 2004
CNN
Elise Labott

WASHINGTON -- The United States and its European allies have reached agreement on a draft resolution for the U.N.'s nuclear watchdog that criticizes Iran's secrecy on its nuclear program, a senior administration official has told CNN.

But the resolution for the International Atomic Energy Agency's (IAEA) Board of Governors also praises Tehran for its cooperation with the watchdog, the official said Tuesday.

The United States has been negotiating with Britain, France and Germany and other European countries on the text, but now needs to garner the support of the rest of the international community, the official said.

The text will now be sent to capitals for comments and possible revisions.

The text, according to the official, "deplores" that Iran failed to disclose sensitive weapons technologies discovered by the IAEA and "notes with the most serious concern" that Iran's past declarations on its nuclear program "did not amount to the correct, complete and final picture of Iran's past and present nuclear program."

The draft calls on Iran to meet its obligations and comply with the IAEA, but delays further action by the IAEA until June, the official said.

The IAEA claims Iran produced and experimented with polonium, a radioactive element that can be used in the chain reaction that produces a nuclear explosion.

It also charges that Iran failed to declare designs for a sophisticated P2 advanced centrifuge that can be used to enrich uranium for nuclear weapons.

On Monday IAEA Director General Mohammed ElBaradei criticized Iran for failing to disclose the technology and called Iran and Libya, who recently declared its nuclear program, in violation of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

But the text also "welcomes" Iran's signature of an additional protocol allowing more intrusive inspections by the IAEA.

While the text says that Iran is "actively cooperating," it calls on Tehran to "intensify its cooperation."

It also censures Iran for continuing to hide its weapons program from the international community, the U.S. State Department said Tuesday.

"We think it's clear that Iran has not made any strategic decision to abandon a nuclear weapons effort," State Department spokesman Richard Boucher said.

He pointed to a "pattern of Iranian behavior" that shows "grudging, partial Iranian cooperation only when confronted by the International Atomic Energy Agency with compelling evidence of an undeclared program."

"That pattern is continuing," he said. "We believe the board should adopt a strong resolution on Iran that reflects the concerns of the board and of the international community.

"We're looking for the board to state clearly that Iran has not yet addressed fully the long-standing concerns about its nuclear activities."

Britain, France, and Germany have been trying to get Iran to cooperate with the IAEA and make good on a recent pledge to fully suspend all uranium enrichment."

http://www.cnn.com/2004/US/03/09/us.iran.nukes/index.html
4 posted on 03/10/2004 12:03:10 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran Says it Will Resume Uranium Enrichment

March 10, 2004
The Associated Press
Ali Akbar Dareini

Tehran, Iran -- Iran's foreign minister said Wednesday that his country will resume uranium enrichment once its problems with the U.N. atomic watchdog are resolved and warned European partners that it could end nuclear cooperation if they fail to support Tehran.

Undeclared uranium enrichment was one of the reasons behind an International Atomic Energy Agency probe of Iran's nuclear facilities.

``It's our legitimate right to enrich uranium,'' Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi told reporters after a Cabinet meeting in Tehran.

``We suspended uranium enrichment voluntarily and temporarily. Later, when our relations with the IAEA returns to normal, we will definitely resume (uranium) enrichment,'' Kharrazi said.

The IAEA is holding a meeting on Iran in Vienna, at which the United States had insisted that Iran be declared in breach of its international agreements, including uranium enrichment and plutonium processing. U.S. officials say those activities point to a nuclear weapons agenda.

The key meeting of the U.N. atomic agency moved closer to agreement Wednesday after the United States and key European powers agreed to praise Tehran's increased openness about its nuclear programs but criticize it for continuing to hide some suspicious activities.

In the draft, United States compromised with Britain, France and Germany to tone down criticism of Iran's continued nuclear secrecy and give some praise of Tehran's willingness to open its programs to outside perusal.

Kharrazi also warned that Iran could end nuclear cooperation, and called on its European partners to resist U.S. pressure at the Vienna meeting.

``We recommend the three European countries to remain committed to their obligations (toward Tehran) and resist U.S. pressures if they want the project of cooperation between Iran and them to lead to results,'' Kharrazi said.

He warned that Iran would stop cooperating with the three nations if they fail to support Iran.

``Cooperation is a two way street. If they don't fulfill their obligations, there is no reason for us to cooperate,'' he said.

The draft made available to The Associated Press noted ``with the most serious concern'' that past declarations made by Iran ``did not amount to the correct, complete and final picture of Iran's past and present nuclear program.''

It criticized Iran for ``failing to resolve all questions'' about uranium enrichment, which can be used to make weapons, saying it ``deplores'' this lapse.

Kharrazi accused the IAEA of giving in to U.S. pressure.

``The U.S. wants to use every opportunity to pressure Iran and pursues its own strategy. Despite the fact that we have offered maximum cooperation with the IAEA ... unfortunately, the agency is sometimes influenced by the U.S., while it should maintain its technical and professional identity,'' Kharrazi said.

The United States insists Iran wants to make nuclear weapons and wanted the meeting to condemn it for not fully living up to pledges to reveal all past and present nuclear activities. But the Europeans wanted to focus on Iranian cooperation that began after the discovery last year that Tehran had plans to enrich uranium and secretly conducted other tests with possible weapons applications over nearly two decades.

An enrichment program would be necessary for producing nuclear weapons, which Iran repeatedly has said is not its intent. Low enriched uranium is used as a fuel for electricity generating in nuclear power plants.

http://cbsnewyork.com/international/Iran-Nuclear-ai/resources_news_html
5 posted on 03/10/2004 12:03:49 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran: U.S. Seeks Revenge for Iraq Failures

March 10, 2004
The Associated Press
Andrea Dudikova

VIENNA, Austria --- Iran's chief delegate to the U.N atomic agency said Wednesday that U.S. failures in Iraq are prompting Washington to seek revenge against his country by persisting with accusations about its nuclear program.

Also Wednesday, the 35-nation board of governors meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency passed a resolution praising Libya for fully meeting its pledge to scrap its nuclear weapons program, clearing the stage to focus on what to do about Iran.

Libya also signed an agreement opening up its nuclear activities to pervasive IAEA perusal, a step that both agency Director General Mohamed ElBaradei and Libyan Science Minister Matouq Mohamed Matouq said reflected Tripoli's commitment to scrap its weapons of mass destruction.

That left the focus on Iran, and a draft resolution trying to meld U.S. demands for tough language because of continued evidence of secrecy and European wishes to praise Tehran for the substantial — but not full — openness it has shown.

Iranian delegate Pirouz Hosseini reiterated that Iran's nuclear programs are purely peaceful, despite American assertions to the contrary.

"We have never been involved in any nuclear weapons program ... and the Americans don't want to accept the fact," he told reporters. "The Americans have failed in Iraq, and it seems that it will be very difficult for them to accept a second failure."

The U.N. nuclear watchdog appeared to have moved closer to agreement on Iran Tuesday after the United States and major European powers agreed to praise Tehran's increased openness about its nuclear programs but criticize it for continuing to hide some suspicious activities.

Hosseini criticized the draft, saying the Americans had put "too much pressure" on the Europeans to toughen its language. Additional complications loomed with Iran's announcement Wednesday that it would resume uranium enrichment once its problems with the IAEA are resolved.

"It's our legitimate right to enrich uranium," Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi said Wednesday after a Cabinet meeting in Tehran.

Iran also acknowledged that some centrifuges it produced for enrichment were built by its military industries but asserted this was normal, with the same sector producing parts for television sets and other nonmilitary applications.

Undeclared Iranian enrichment of uranium was one of the reasons behind an IAEA probe of the country's nuclear program. The United States insists uranium enrichment programs conducted clandestinely until their discovery last year, along with plutonium processing and other undeclared tests, point to a nuclear weapons agenda.

Kharrazi also warned that Iran could end nuclear cooperation and called on the Europeans to oppose U.S. efforts to come down hard on Tehran at the Vienna meeting.

In the draft, agreed on Tuesday in Vienna, the United States compromised with Britain, France and Germany to tone down criticism of Iran's continued nuclear secrecy and offer some praise of Tehran's record in opening activities to outside perusal.

The United States had wanted the meeting to condemn Iran for not fully living up to pledges to reveal all past and present nuclear activities. But the Europeans wanted to focus on Iranian cooperation with the IAEA that began only after the discovery last year that Tehran had plans to enrich uranium and secretly conducted other tests with possible weapons applications over nearly two decades.

"We recommend the three European countries ... resist U.S. pressures if they want the project of cooperation between Iran and them to lead to results," Kharrazi said, alluding to agreement that foresees the three providing technology to the Islamic Republic in exchange for a stop to uranium enrichment.

When the issue first came up before the board last year, the United States pushed to have Tehran dragged before the U.N. Security Council for possible sanctions, arguing that Iran had violated the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty. But it has found little board support for that. The draft text, made available to The Associated Press, made no direct mention of the Security Council, but noted "with the most serious concern" that past declarations made by Iran "did not amount to the correct, complete and final picture of Iran's past and present nuclear program."

It criticized Iran for "failing to resolve all questions" about uranium enrichment, saying it "deplores" this lapse.

Still, it praised Iran for signing an agreement throwing open its nuclear programs to full and pervasive IAEA perusal and for signs of Iran's cooperation with agency investigations.

The resolution on Libya noted that for more than a decade, Libya violated the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty in running a weapons program but lauded it for volunteering to have it destroyed under IAEA supervision.

An IAEA report last month accused Tehran of continuing to hide evidence of nuclear experiments and mentioned finds of traces of polonium, a radioactive element that can be used in nuclear weapons. It also expressed concerns with the discovery of a previously undisclosed advanced P-2 uranium centrifuge system.

While praising Tehran for some cooperation, ElBaradei said he was "seriously concerned" about Iran's refusal to declare plans and parts for the P-2 enrichment system, calling it a "setback to Iran's stated policy of transparency."

http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=540&ncid=736&e=3&u=/ap/20040310/ap_on_re_mi_ea/nuclear_agency_iran
6 posted on 03/10/2004 12:04:32 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran Threatens to End Cooperation with IAEA

March 10, 2004
AFP
Khaleej Times

TEHERAN -- Iran will halt its cooperation with the UN nuclear watchdog if European states fail to counter US pressure on the Islamic republic over its atomic programme, Foreign Minister Kamal Kharazi threatened Wednesday.

The minister also said Iran intended to end its suspension of uranium enrichment -- a key step in producing both nuclear weapons and atomic energy -- once relations with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) were “normalised.”

“Unfortunately, the agency allows itself to be influenced by the Americans,” Kharazi told reporters here after a cabinet meeting.

“We are engaged in cooperation (with the IAEA), and for this to continue the cooperation has to be bilateral. If one side does not respect its obligations, the cooperation will end,” he added.

The foreign minister asserted that he expected European states -- which have brokered Iran’s continued cooperation with the IAEA -- to counter mounting US pressure over the Islamic republic’s suspect bid to generate atomic energy.

“We advise the Europeans to respect their obligations and to resist American pressure, otherwise there is no reason for cooperation to continue,” he warned.

The minister also suggested that the Islamic republic was becoming increasingly impatient to resume its controversial work of making its own enriched uranium instead of importing it.

“In order to build confidence we decided to voluntarily suspend, for a limited time, our enrichment activities. When relations with the IAEA are normalised, we will resume enrichment,” Kharazi said.

He spoke after the United States and western European countries reached tentative agreement on a draft resolution criticising Iran for failing to declare sensitive parts of its nuclear program but putting off seeking any sanctions until at least June.

The resolution is to be submitted to the IAEA’s 35-nation board of governors, which is meeting this week at its headquarters in Vienna.

Regarding the draft resolution, Kharazi only said that Iran “has no problem with some articles but does have problems with others.”

The United States, which claims Iran is secretly developing nuclear weapons, along with Canada and Australia, has been pushing for a tough text against Iran but Britain, France and Germany wanted a milder draft in order to keep Iran cooperating with the IAEA.

The so-called Euro 3 had in October struck a deal with Iran to cooperate with the IAEA, and are stressing the path of “constructive engagement”.

On Tuesday, Kharazi had warned that Iran, which claims its atomic programme is strictly peaceful, will “not accept” being declared as having violated nuclear safeguards agreements.

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle.asp?xfile=data/middleeast/2004/March/middleeast_March277.xml&section=middleeast&col=
7 posted on 03/10/2004 12:05:06 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran, N. Korea to Jointly Build Machinery for Enriching Uranium

March 10, 2004
AFX News
Ample

TOKYO -- North Korea and Iran are working on a project to build an underground factory in the Stalinist state to produce machinery for enriching uranium, the Sankei Shimbun reported.

The two countries have agreed to jointly build a plant to make a centrifugal separator in Kusong, 40 kilometers northwest of Anju, a site known for nuclear development by Pyongyang, the Japanese newspaper said, citing an unnamed military source.

Under the accord, reached during the visit by a senior Iranian military officer to Pyongyang in late January, both nations will use the machinery, with Iran planning to import it as "industrial goods" through a third country, the Sankei said.

South Korea detected more than 70 test explosions by the North at Kusong, the paper said.

Washington has accused the North of a program to enrich uranium in defiance of a 1994 anti-nuclear pact while Pyongyang has denied having an enriched uranium program but admits it has plutonium bombs.

The Sankei reported earlier this year that North Korea and Iran were involved in the development of weapons of mass destruction in Libya.

http://www.iii.co.uk/shares/?type=news&articleid=4920063&action=article
8 posted on 03/10/2004 12:05:35 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran Slams Europeans for Bowing to U.S.

March 10, 2004
AFP
Yahoo News

VIENNA -- Iran criticized European states for bowing to US pressure to condemn Tehran's atomic program before the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and threatened to stop cooperating with the United Nations ' nuclear watchdog.

Britain, Germany and France "have tried their best, but we expected more from our European colleagues" Iranian ambassador Pirooz Hosseini told reporters at a meeting of the IAEA in Vienna. He was referring to a draft IAEA resolution that lists Iranian failures to report sensitive nuclear activities.

Hosseini said there was "too much pressure, unconstructive pressure, by the Americans".

The IAEA has been verifying since February 2003 whether Iran's nuclear program is peaceful, or devoted to secretly developing atomic weapons, as the United States maintains.

In Tehran, Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharazi said the Islamic Republic threatened to end cooperation with the IAEA unless it stopped being "influenced by the Americans".

"We are engaged in cooperation (with the IAEA) and for this to continue the cooperation has to be bilateral. If one side does not respect its obligations, the cooperation will end," Kharazai added after the Iranian government's weekly cabinet meeting.

In Brussels, the European Commission issued a veiled warning to Iran not to end cooperation with IAEA, noting that Europe's trade dialogue with Tehran was linked to the nuclear issue.

And IAEA director general Mohamed ElBaradei urged Iran not to renew its uranium enrichment activities, as Tehran had threatened to do earlier Wednesday.

"Iran has been in breach of its (nuclear non proliferation) obligations for many years and we need to build confidence," ElBaradei said.

"I think suspension (of uranium enrichment) is a confidence-building measure and, as I said, Iran needs to do everything possible right now to create the confidence required."

The IAEA's 35-nation board of governors is meeting in Vienna this week has not yet voted on the draft resolution on Iran.

But Hosseini said the text, drafted by the US and the three European states, was "an act of bullying and putting pressure on the others".

"This is against the statute of the IAEA and not fruitful anyway," he said.

The United States, which wants to take Iran to the UN Security Council for possible sanctions, agreed on a compromise text Tuesday with Britain, France and Germany, which have stressed the need to get Iran to cooperate with the international community over nuclear non-proliferation.

The compromise text, a copy of which was obtained by AFP, condemns Iran for failing to report such crucial technologies as advanced P-2 centrifuge designs for enriching uranium, possibly to weapons grade.

But it puts off any immediate reaction, such as declaring Iran to be in non-compliance with the international nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), a move that would mean the issue being taken up by the UN Security Council and pave the way towards possible sanctions.

Britain-France and Germany struck a deal with Iran in October 2003, under which the latter agreed to cooperate with the IAEA, and were currently stressing the need to maintain "constructive engagement", a Western diplomat said.

In Washington, a senior State Department official warned late Tuesday that Iran was likely to be referred to the Security Council eventually unless it radically altered its attitude on matters relating to its nuclear program.

But Hosseini responded: "We think that the Americans do not want to accept the fact that Iran is not looking for nuclear weapons programs. This is a fact but they don't want to accept this fact."

The 13 non-aligned states on the IAEA board of governors were Wednesday examining the compromise text for the first time. Several diplomats from those countries said they were "uncomfortable" that the draft had been leaked to the press before it had been given to them.

Meanwhile, Libya took a further step towards cooperation with the IAEA, signing an additional protocol to the NPT which allows IAEA inspectors to carry out wider, unannounced inspections of its nuclear facilities.

This came after the IAEA board adopted a resolution to notify the UN Security Council that Tripoli had violated its nuclear non-proliferation commitments but had since cooperated in remedying this, so that sanctions would not be called for.

http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=1512&ncid=1276&e=1&u=/afp/20040310/wl_afp/iran_libya_nuclear_iaea
9 posted on 03/10/2004 12:06:11 PM 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; ...
Iran Slams Europeans for Bowing to U.S.

March 10, 2004
AFP
Yahoo News

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/1094866/posts?page=9#9
10 posted on 03/10/2004 12:07:09 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Tens of female students arrested in south Tehran

SMCCDI (Information Service)
Mar 10, 2004

Tens of young female school students were arrested, today, after they came into the streets of the poor suburbs of Tehran, sucha s, rey and Eslamshahr and shouted slogans against the regime and its leaders.

The brave students faced the security forces and the plainclothes agents by shouting slogans asking for free elections and the dismantelement of the repressive Bassij force.

Security forces stayed affar during the demo as hundreds of residents had joined the protesters but proceeded to their arrests at the end of the action.

The situation in most areas of the Capital is very tense and schools are closed in many districts as the regime wants to avoid more demos to take place especiall with the approach of saturday morning and the banned Fire Fiest on Tuesday.

http://www.daneshjoo.org/generalnews/article/publish/article_5292.shtml
11 posted on 03/10/2004 12:09:21 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Protest demo rocks Tehran

SMCCDI (Information Service)
Mar 10, 2004

Another spontaneous protest demonstration is rocking, as of 20:15 IR local time, parts of northern, western and eastern Tehran where groups of young people have gone into the streets and shouting slogans against the regime and its leaders. The largest gathering has been reported to be in Madar Square (formerly Mohseni) and on Mirdamad Avenue in northern Tehran.

The number of protesters is increasing, despite the massive presence of the regime's security forces. Security forces and their plainclothesmen perimeters are getting close to the demonstrators, but people are managing to join the demonstrators by alternate routes and detours.

Violent clashes are expected which will further increase pressure on the regime as internal and international fronts demand that the government show its' ability to control both situations. Less ideologically oriented supporters have been, reportedly, withdrawing important sums of money from their bank accounts as the spread of the teachers and students strikes expands nationwide

http://www.daneshjoo.org/generalnews/article/publish/article_5286.shtml
12 posted on 03/10/2004 12:09:58 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
For bowing to U.S.??

I'd say it was just the opposite and this phoney outrage is some sort of ruse or cover-up for EU.
13 posted on 03/10/2004 12:14:00 PM PST by nuconvert (CAUTION: I'm an acquaintance of someone labelled :"an obstinate supporter of dangerous fantasies")
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To: nuconvert
Good point.
14 posted on 03/10/2004 12:20:41 PM PST by Pan_Yans Wife (The soul unfolds itself, like a lotus of countless petals. --- Kahlil Gibran)
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To: DoctorZIn
Systematic Repression, Fear Stifle Freedom in Iran

March 10, 2004
AFP
IranMania

GENEVA -- A UN expert has warned that systematic repression is creating a climate of fear in Iran, where hardliners have gained a stranglehold over government and the judiciary in the country.

Ambeyi Ligabo, UN Special Rapporteur on freedom of opinion and expression, said in a report obtained Wednesday that unelected institutions run by hardliners had effectively locked out reformers even though they participated in the highest spheres of Iranian government.

The UN expert underlined that there was a "climate of fear induced by the systematic repression of people expressing critical views against the authorised political and religious doctrine and the functioning of institutions".

Coupled with the "severity and disproportion" of sentences imposed on alleged offenders, tha pervasive fear led to self-censorship on the part of journalists, intellectuals, politicians, students and "the population at large", he added in the report.

Ligabo said the Expediency Council, the Council of Guardians, the Supreme Council for Culture and the head of the judiciary exercised "institutional locks on governmental, parliamentary, and judicial processes".

Many of the people whom Ligabo met in Iran told him that "there is freedom of expression but there is no freedom after expression," the report said.

The Kenyan lawyer's report, which is due to be presented to the annual meeting of the UN Human Rights Commission beginning next week, was based on an unprecedented mission to the country last November.

The Iranian student news agency (ISNA) reported the day after Ligabo left on November 11 that a prominent Iranian student activist, who had met the envoy while on prison leave, had gone missing.

http://www.iranmania.com/News/ArticleView/Default.asp?NewsCode=23302&NewsKind=Current%20Affairs
15 posted on 03/10/2004 2:40:56 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Unfair Trial and Illegal Imprisonment

March 10, 2004
Reporters Without Borders
RSF

Reporters Without Borders has condemned a one-year jail sentence against journalist Mohsen Sazgara as unfair and contrary to international legal norms. It also spoke out against the arbitrary imprisonment of three journalists since nine months.

Sazgara learned from his lawyer on 8 March that his appeal trial had been heard while he was abroad seeking urgent medical attention, the international press freedom organisation said.

"Yet again this is a completely illegal procedure," Sazgara told Reporters Without Borders. "The Iranian authorities gave me permission to leave the country and waited until I was no longer in Iran to announce this so-called verdict in a trial held in the absence of both the lawyer and the person being sentenced." "I intend to return to Iran as soon as possible to respond to this farce," he added.

Sazgara was imprisoned on 15 June and then released on bail of six billion rials (about 580,000 euros) on 6 October 2003. A week before his release he had been charged with "undermining national security", "insulting the Guide of the Islamic Revolution" and "making propaganda against the state" and sentenced to one year in prison. During his 110 days of imprisonment he twice went on hunger strike for 56 and then 23 days to protest against government repression.

He was one of the founders of the reformist press in Iran and was publisher of the dailies Jameh, Neshat and Tous, now banned and the creator of the site: www.alliran.net (shut down after his arrest). A courageous political analyst, he wrote, "the past five years have shown that the country's religious rulers are neither reformable nor effective". He also called the Guide of the Islamic Revolution, Ayatollah Khamenei "dictatorial", which earned him several stays in Iranian prisons.

On the eve of Sazgara's arrest, on 14 June 2003, three other journalists - Taghi Rahmani, of the weekly Omid-e-Zangan, Reza Alijani, editor in chief of the monthly Iran-e-Farda and winner of the Reporters Without Borders - Fondation de France 2001 press freedom award, and Hoda Saber, a manager of Iran-e-Farda were jailed for "holding secret meetings with students". Held for months in solitary confinement, deprived of visits from their lawyers and families, they passed the legal deadline for temporary detention on 6 December 2003.

Narges Mohammadi, the wife of Taghi Rahmani, has spoken about her distress at the situation that violates the most basic principles of law. "They are in prison illegally, without charge, without sentence and without trial," she told Reporters Without Borders. "When we try to get information about their cases, we get no reply and their lawyers do not even have access to their files."

The organisation also condemns ongoing harassment of the press, with the banning of the weekly Kalam-e Moalem accused of carrying news about a major teachers' strike, and of the weekly Vaght for "offending against good morals". The managing editor Shahram Mohammad Nia, was given a six-month suspended sentence.

With 11 journalists behind bars, Iran is the Middle East's biggest prison for journalists.

http://www.rsf.org/content.php3
16 posted on 03/10/2004 2:41:29 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
"I intend to return to Iran as soon as possible to respond to this farce," he added.

Wouldn't he be a good candidate for political asylum?

17 posted on 03/10/2004 2:44:06 PM PST by Pan_Yans Wife (The soul unfolds itself, like a lotus of countless petals. --- Kahlil Gibran)
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To: DoctorZIn; F14 Pilot; freedom44; nuconvert; Grampa Dave; SAMWolf; Ragtime Cowgirl; MeekOneGOP; ...

http://www.augustachronicle.com/iraq/graphics/weapon_centrifuge.gif

Of course Iran only wants to make a flakier pastry with such apparatus and more sophisticated follow-ons.

Yet the imperialist warmongering bully cowboy in Amerika wants to crush such progressive ventures.

And we are disappointed that the good money we paid in bribes to Galloway in the UK, Chirac in france, and Schroeder in Germany didn't buy more cooperation.

If the UN pushes us too hard, we will hold our breath until we turn a cerulean blue.

And, eat worms, and wear a long face like Mr. Ed Kerry, and other extreme dire measures too ominous to enunciate.

~~~

What is a Gas Centrifuge?

In nature, uranium contains less than 1 percent of the fissile isotope uranium 235 (U-235). A nuclear explosive needs uranium enriched to at least 20 percent U-235. Ideally greater than 90% U-235 is used. In order to increase the percentage of U-235 in relation to the more prevalent U-238 the uranium must be processed, or “enriched.” One technique to enrich uranium uses gas centrifuges.

A gas centrifuge (diagrams below) comprises an evacuated casing containing a cylindrical rotor which rotates at high speed in an almost friction-free environment. The uranium is fed into the rotor as gaseous uranium hexafluoride (UF6)2 which also rotates.

The centrifugal forces push the heavier uranium 238 (U-238) closer to the wall of the rotor than the lighter U-235. The gas closer to the wall becomes depleted in U-235 whereas the gas nearer the rotor axis is enriched in U-235.

The arrows in the first illustration depict the gas flowing within the rotor. The gas flow can be produced by a temperature gradient over the length of the centrifuge. UF6 depleted in U-235 flows upwards adjacent to the rotor wall, while UF6 enriched in U-235 flows downwards close to the axis. The two gas streams are removed through small scooped pipes, called "scoops."

The enrichment effect of a single centrifuge is small, so they are linked together by pipes into cascades. Passing through the successive centrifuges of a cascade, the U-235 is gradually enriched to the required level. For civil applications, natural uranium containing about 0.7 percent U-235 is enriched to about 3-5 percent U-235 and the depleted uranium contains typically about 0.2-0.3 percent U-235. For military applications, highly enriched uranium (HEU) containing greater than 20 percent U-235 is usually produced.

Once started, a modern centrifuge runs for more than 10 years with no maintenance. An advantage of the centrifuge process is its low energy consumption.

18 posted on 03/10/2004 3:21:17 PM PST by PhilDragoo (Hitlery: das Butch von Buchenvald)
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To: DoctorZIn
Thanks for the ping DocZ, Freedom for all who wish to be responsible for it! Free Iran!
19 posted on 03/10/2004 3:24:23 PM PST by PureSolace (I love freedom.)
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To: DoctorZIn; nuconvert; F14 Pilot; faludeh_shirazi
http://news.iran-emrooz.de/more.php?id=3503_0_7_0_M

the teachers are on nationwide stike since saturday.

the presidents of all medical schools resign together in protest to government not honoring its financial comitments.

pensioners protest about their pay and the person in charge of government planning and budget blames the finance ministry. finance minister talks about everything and nothing at at the end says thay need a court rulling.
20 posted on 03/10/2004 3:32:42 PM PST by freedom44
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
I didn't notice it said where he is, but he seems to Want to go back to Iran.
21 posted on 03/10/2004 3:37:44 PM PST by nuconvert (CAUTION: I'm an acquaintance of someone labelled :"an obstinate supporter of dangerous fantasies")
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To: nuconvert
I can understand the desire. I don't care where you live, home is home. But, I would think he could obtain asylum in the west, where he can be safe. Perhaps I am missing too much of the story to understand completely.
22 posted on 03/10/2004 3:39:51 PM PST by Pan_Yans Wife (The soul unfolds itself, like a lotus of countless petals. --- Kahlil Gibran)
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To: DoctorZIn
"Nearly one-third of Iranian youth unemployed"

Tuesday, March 09, 2004 - ©2004 IranMania.com

TEHRAN, March 8 (AFP) -- Close to one-third of young Iranians are unable to find regular employment and the Islamic republic's jobless crisis is expected to worsen, an official close to the government was quoted as saying.

According to Rahim Ebadi, head of the Iranian Youth Organisation, 31% of those aged between 15 and 29 were without work, representing a successive 13% increase over the past two years.

In Iran, under-30's make up around 70% of the population, and unemployment remains a major headache for tens of thousands of graduates and those hoping to marry.

Officially, the overall jobless rate is put at 12.8%, although analysts say the real figure is substantially higher.

Iran's reformist President Mohammad Khatami has acknowledged failing to keep his promises to bring down unemployment -- a central pledge that helped him win landslide victories in 1997 and 2001.

Reforms aimed at shaking up the state-dominated and highly protected economy have also met with stiff opposition.

http://www.iranmania.com/News/ArticleView/Default.asp?NewsCode=23249&NewsKind=Current%20Affairs
23 posted on 03/10/2004 3:41:45 PM PST by freedom44
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To: DoctorZIn
Scores of Iranian Kurds arrested after demonstration
Wednesday, March 10 2004 @ 03:00 PM CST
TEHRAN, March 10 (AFP) - Around 100 Iranian Kurds were arrested after staging demonstrations to show their solidarity with Iraqi Kurds following the signing of Iraq's new interim constitution, two ethnic Kurdish MPs told AFP Wednesday.

"Over the past few days, residents of several Kurdish towns have taken to the street to show their joy and their solidarity with the Iraqi Kurds, who have gained the right of autonomy after years of repression," said Jalal Jalalizadeh, a deputy from the western Iranian town of Sanandaj.

"In many of the towns, security forces acted quickly, but unfortunately in some towns the demonstrators committed riotous acts and the police arrested around 100 people as a result," he said.

According to the MP, unrest was seen in the towns of Mahabad, Boukan and Marivan, with some protestors demanding "democracy in Iran and autonomy for Iranian Kurdistan".

Under the interim Iraqi constitution signed in Baghdad on Monday, Iraqi Kurdistan will retain its federal status, while Kurdish is recognised as one of the two official languages of Iraq.

On Wednesday, the hardline Jomhuri Islami newspaper also reported unrest in Kurdish towns, and quoted a police statement from Marivan as saying that a politician barred from standing in last month's parliament elections was among those detained.

The paper also said the demonstrators destroyed a statue of a young Iranian killed in the 1980-88 war with Iraq and used by the Islamic regime here as a symbol of devotion and sacrifice to the revolution.

"Apparently the inhabitants did destroy the statue," Jalalizadeh said. "For several years they have been asking for the erection of a statue of the great poet of Marivan, Mohammad Khanegh who died 30 years ago, but this has been refused."

Another Sanandaj MP, Bahayedin Adad, said that in the town of Boukan some 20 people were arrested, and 15 injured.

Iran has an estimated six million Kurds, and successive central governments in Tehran have consistently shown little mercy towards any moves in the Kurdish regions towards independence.

The area was the scene of heavy fighting after the 1979 revolution between Kurdish separatists and the regime.

The Islamic regime has also in the past made deals with the two main Iraqi Kurd parties -- the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) and the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) -- that Iranian Kurdish opposition groups based across the border are kept on a tight leash.

Iran Monday welcomed the signing of Iraq's interim constitution but failed to comment on its contents, which as well as guaranteeing Kurdish autonomy give only a supporting role to Islam.


http://www.dozame.org/article.php?story=20040310150002842
24 posted on 03/10/2004 3:51:04 PM PST by freedom44
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To: DoctorZIn; McGavin999; freedom44; nuconvert; Eala; AdmSmith; dixiechick2000; onyx; Pro-Bush; ...
Iran to Rethink Everything

Mehr News Agency ( State-Run )
March 10th 2004

TEHRAN, March 10 (Mehr News Agency) -- Taking into consideration the fact that Iran’s constructive cooperation with the UN nuclear watchdog, which reached its zenith with the signing of the Additional Protocol to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), was followed by the drafting of a jointly-written resolution by the U.S. and the European Union and the IAEA bowing to U.S. political pressure, has prompted Iran to review and rethink its dealings with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

The draft resolution not only corresponds with U.S. views it also demonstrates that the European states, namely, Britain, France, and Germany, which agreed in October last year to recognize Iran’s legitimate right to develop nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, have reneged on their promises. No country will be permitted to deprive the Iranian nation of this right and the nations will also never compromise on this inalienable right which has been recognized by international organizations. The masterminds behind this resolution should never forget this point.

http://www.mehrnews.com/wfNewsDetails_en.aspx?NewsID=64974&t=Political
25 posted on 03/10/2004 4:00:00 PM PST by F14 Pilot
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To: F14 Pilot
Freedom in Iran now ~ Bump!

We are winning ~ the bad guys are losing ~ trolls, terrorists, democrats and the mainstream media are sad ~ very sad!

~~ Bush/Cheney 2004 ~~

26 posted on 03/10/2004 4:38:40 PM PST by blackie (Be Well~Be Armed~Be Safe~Molon Labe!)
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To: DoctorZIn
The End of Europe?

American Enterprise Institute ^ | Thursday, March 4, 2004 | Niall Ferguson
Posted on 03/05/2004 4:41:53 AM PST by DeuceTraveler

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1091250/posts
27 posted on 03/10/2004 5:51:57 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: F14 Pilot
"No country will be permitted to deprive the Iranian nation of this right"

OHHhhh???
28 posted on 03/10/2004 6:37:55 PM PST by nuconvert (CAUTION: I'm an acquaintance of someone labelled :"an obstinate supporter of dangerous fantasies")
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To: PhilDragoo

29 posted on 03/10/2004 6:47:14 PM PST by MeekOneGOP (The Democrats say they believe in CHOICE. I have chosen to vote STRAIGHT TICKET GOP for years !!)
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran Admits Military Industries Produced Nuclear Centrifuges

March 10, 2004
The Associated Press
Ali Akbar Dareini

TEHRAN, Iran – Iran said Wednesday it would resume uranium enrichment and warned it may quit cooperating with the International Atomic Energy Agency, which it accused of kowtowing to Washington at a crucial meeting in Vienna.

Defense Minister Ali Shamkhani also told reporters the Iranian military had built nuclear centrifuges for civilian use – the first time Iran has acknowledged its military was involved in the country's nuclear program.

IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei warned that Iran risked undermining its efforts to convince the world its nuclear intentions are peaceful.

"I think suspension is ... a good confidence-building measure, and Iran needs to do everything possible right now to create the confidence required," ElBaradei said Wednesday in Vienna, Austria, where the U.N. atomic agency's board of governors was meeting.

The agency's 35-nation board of governors was preparing for a debate Thursday on whether Iran is living up to its pledge to full transparency on its nuclear program.

The United States, which suspects Iran is building nuclear arms, wants a draft resolution on Iran to take a tough line because of evidence of secrecy. But the Europeans want to acknowledge Iran has made substantial, if not complete, steps toward openness.

A draft obtained by The Associated Press said the agency noted "with the most serious concern" that Iran's declarations "did not amount to the correct, complete and final picture of Iran's past and present nuclear program."

But it also praised Iran for signing an agreement that granted a free hand to IAEA inspectors.

Iran's chief delegate to the IAEA, Pirouz Hosseini, told reporters outside the board of governors meeting that Iran was unhappy with the draft and accused the United States of putting pressure on the Europeans.

"We have never been involved in any nuclear weapons program ... and the Americans don't want to accept the fact," Hosseini said.

In Tehran, Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi accused the world body of failing to reciprocate.

"We told (the IAEA) that cooperation should be bilateral. We take steps and expect the other side to take steps. It can't go one-sided," Kharrazi said.

Kharrazi warned Britain, France and Germany – whose foreign ministers visited Tehran last year to discuss the nuclear issue – that Iran will stop cooperating with them if they fail to resist U.S. pressure at the Vienna meeting.

"We recommend that the three European countries remain committed to their obligations (toward Tehran) and resist U.S. pressure, if they want ... cooperation between Iran and them to lead to results," Kharrazi said. "Cooperation is a two-way street."

Kharrazi said Iran had a "legitimate right to enrich uranium" to fuel the nuclear reactor it is building to generate electrical power.

"We suspended uranium enrichment voluntarily and temporarily. Later, when our relations with the IAEA return to normal, we will definitely resume (uranium) enrichment," Kharrazi said.

One of the reasons for the recent IAEA inspections of Iran's nuclear facilities was last year's discovery of undeclared uranium enrichment.

Kharrazi accused the IAEA of giving in to U.S. pressure.

"Unfortunately, the agency is sometimes influenced by the United States, while it should maintain its technical and professional identity," Kharrazi said.

Defense Minister Shamkhani said the military industries had produced P-1 centrifuges, which are used for low-grade enrichment, not the P-2 models used for weapons-grade enriched uranium.

"We have produced P-1, not P-2, contrary to U.S. allegations," Shamkhani said.

"It's natural in the world that defense industries produce civilian parts," Shamkhani said, adding the industries also produce televisions and parts for civilian planes and vehicles.

The IAEA has questioned Iran about blueprints for the more advanced P-2 centrifuges. Iran says the blueprints never got beyond the research stage.

A leading Iranian hard-line editor, Hossein Shariatmadari, urged the government Wednesday to give the IAEA an ultimatum.

"Iran has to set a deadline," Shariatmadari wrote in the newspaper Kayhan. "If Iran's nuclear dossier is not removed from the agency's agenda, Iran must not only stop allowing unfettered inspections of its nuclear facilities, it must resume uranium enrichment and, possibly, even withdraw from the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty."

The treaty commits its members to peaceful use of nuclear power.

http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/world/20040310-1112-iran-nuclear.html
30 posted on 03/10/2004 6:48:29 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Al-Zaban's Murder Snapped Arafat's Longstanding Ties with Tehran

March 10, 2004
DEBKAfile
DEBKA-Net-Weekly

Tuesday, March 2, as Khalil al-Zaban, 59, sat down behind the wheel of his car in downtown Gaza City, five men in ski masks approached. One opened a conversation and still talking pulled out a gun and shot al-Zaban in the head. The other four pulled out weapons and continued shooting. Then they all made off. In the hospital, twelve bullets were found in the body.

The cold-blooded assassination shocked many Palestinians – not so much in the Gaza Strip where it took place but in Yasser Arafat’s Ramallah sanctum. For many years, he and al Zaban was very close. The dead man acted as his personal spokesman and trusted director of the Palestinian News Agency, as well as close companion from the days of Palestinian combat in the 1970s Lebanese civil war until their arrival in Gaza in 1994 from years of Tunisian exile.

In recent years, their friendship cooled, although Arafat awarded al-Zaban a modest budget to put out a small inoffensive weekly on human rights in the Palestinian Authority.

His murder was generally attributed by Palestinian media to the breakdown of authority and of law and order in Palestinian areas.

The day after the murder, Arafat declared at his Ramallah headquarters: “Episodes like this murder violate Palestinian moral principles. The killers will be punished.”

Around Gaza’s cafes, bazaars and the drawing rooms of smart seashore villas, it was whispered that al-Zaban’s murderers were heavies dispatched by Mohammed Dahlan to make sure all the Palestinian security forces knew who was top dog in the Gaza Strip. According to this account, Dahlan had made a comeback in open defiance of an order from Yasser Arafat forbidding him to re-establish himself on the Gaza Strip, which he once ruled.

Dahlan has never been forgiven for challenging Arafat’s leadership or joining the short-lived US-backed Abu Mazen government last year. As minister of interior, he attempted unsuccessfully to wrest the security forces from Arafat’s grip.

DEBKA-Net-Weekly ’s counter-terror sources confirm one part of the gossip - the murder was indeed the work of Dahlan’s men – but his motive was quite different from the one attributed to him and it is revealed here for the first time.

He knew that behind the façade of obscurity, al-Zaban was Arafat’s secret middleman for Arafat’s ties with the Iranian rulers in Tehran.

This role was of historic importance. It was instrumental in forging the epic rapprochement between the Palestinian national movement and the Lebanese Hizballah. It opened the door for Tehran to supply the Palestinians with quantities of arms, a large shipload of which Israeli commandos seized on the Red Sea in January 2002. The Iranian cargo was loaded aboard the Karine-A under the supervision of Mohammed Dahlan in his former life as Arafat’s terrorist strong arm in the Gaza Strip.

Al-Zaban was the live wire which opened up a flow of Iranian funds to the al Aqsa Martyr Brigades which carry out suicide attacks on behalf of Arafat’s Fatah-Tanzim. This source replaced Iraqi largesse which dried up when the Americans overthrew Saddam Hussein in Baghdad.

So successful was the façade that his frequent travels to Beirut, Iran and the Gulf emirates on apparent assignments for his dull little human rights publication went unnoticed. On those occasions, he met discreetly with Iranian Revolutionary Guards agents and kept up his close connections in the Iranian regime. Those connections were of long standing. Ayatollah Khomeini’s revolutionary leaders received their first training in terrorism and urban guerrilla combat at Arafat’s Fatah camps in Lebanon, before they unseated the Shah. One Iranian dissident group was placed in the personal care of Khalil al-Zaban. It numbered men whom the 1979 Islamic revolution was to raise to eminence in Tehran. One was Ali Akhbar Mohtashamipour, a founder of the Lebanese Hizballah and currently head of the Iranian organization for aiding the Palestinian Intifada. Up until last month’s parliamentary election in Iran, Mohtashamipour represented the reformist camp in the Majlis. According to DEBKA-Net-Weekly ’s Tehran sources, that was a front behind which he acted as informer for the radical regime. Another prominent Irani to whom the murdered Palestinian imparted terror tactics in their Lebanon days was Hashemi Rafsanjani, former Iranian president and today hard-line spiritual leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s closest adviser.

Our Iranian sources describe how Khalil al-Zaban, the nonentity in Gaza, was treated as a celebrity when he arrived in Tehran as the personal guest of Rafsanjani.

Mohammed Dahlan’s willingness to set up al-Zaban’s assassination shows how much he wants to prove he is a reformed character. He is the first figure with a long, black record as part of the terror-tainted Palestinian security apparatus, to step out and target a terrorist personage close to Yasser Arafat. As Abu Mazen’s interior minister, he vetoed direct action against terrorist kingpins. His refusal to fight Palestinian terror all the way was the key factor behind the first Palestinian government’s downfall. It also left the Bush road map stuck in the sand.

He believes now that his targeted liquidation of Khalil al-Zaban will be the clincher for persuading skeptical Americans and Israelis that Mohammed Dahlan has genuinely turned a new leaf and is willing to go all out to fight terror – even against Iran and the Hizballah.

But Arafat has not been inactive.

He has moved to tighten his clutch on the southern Gaza Strip and its vital smuggling tunnel routes from Egypt. Hitherto he asserted his authority from Ramallah through the local Sema Dana clan and their shared Popular Resistance Committees. DEBKAfile’s Palestinian sources reveal that recently he stepped in more directly by placing his kinsman Mussa Arafat, head of “Palestinian military intelligence,” in direct charge of the Israel-Egypt-Gaza border triangle and its labyrinth of smuggling tunnels.

This crossing with tunnels form the mainline route for illegal drugs, prostitutes and weapons – some bound for the Israeli underworld and farther parts of the Middle East - to enter Palestinian areas from Egyptian Sinai. The southern Gaza Strip has thus become a hotbed of criminal activity with smuggling tunnels snaking under the most densely populated parts of Rafah and Khan Younes.

Four hit-men from Belarus arrested in Tel Aviv Monday, March 9, on suspicion of having been hired by Israel mobsters for revenge killings of rivals, reached Israel through this route. Their illicit entry will not have been lost on the new local warlord, Mussa Arafat, and his minions. Yasser Arafat’s direct control of this unruly territory is a fresh impediment to Dahlan’s aspirations and a guarantee of its continued lawless state.

http://www.debka.com/article.php?aid=802
31 posted on 03/10/2004 6:57:38 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran Teacher Strike Forces Many Schools to Close

March 10, 2004
Reuters
Jordan Times

“It might lead to a political crisis because teachers' influence extends from the working class to the intellectual elite,” said Hossein Mirzamani, a political science lecturer at Tehran University.

TEHRAN -- Iranian teachers striking over pay have forced scores of schools nationwide to shut down in the Islamic Republic's biggest industrial dispute for at least two years, teachers and parliamentarians said on Tuesday. Though frustration over low pay and poor living conditions are widespread in Iran, nationwide strikes are rare in the oil-rich country where hardline judges tolerate little dissent.

Teachers said the strike had not been orchestrated by any labour organisation but had caught on by word of mouth. Labour unions are typically weak and disorganised in Iran.

“We're getting news that most schools are closed because of the teachers' strike and more will be closed until their demands are met,” said a parliamentarian, who asked not to be named.

Teachers, who began the strike last week, staged protests outside schools in many cities, including the capital Tehran.

“We should be respected and have better salaries to be able to teach the next generation,” said Alosh Hosseini, a 43-year-old father of three who earns $150 a month as a teacher in the northwestern city of Urumiyeh.

“With this salary I cannot even pay my rent,” he said. Like many of his colleagues in the public sector, Hosseini has been forced to take a second job driving a taxi to make ends meet.

While teachers said the strike was not politically motivated, some analysts said it could spark a wider crisis.

“It might lead to a political crisis because teachers' influence extends from the working class to the intellectual elite,” said Hossein Mirzamani, a political science lecturer at Tehran University.

But another analyst said it was unlikely the strike would spread to other sectors and the approaching Iranian New Year holiday beginning on March 20 would deprive the strike of much momentum.

While Iran's economy has grown strongly in recent years, state employees in particular often complain their low wages are constantly eroded by inflation running at around 16 per cent.

Last week, scores of teachers gathered in front of parliament and chanted slogans against the authorities for ignoring their demands.

The main association for school teachers, last week warned of the consequences of a lengthy strike. “This event might lead to a national challenge and ignorant officials are responsible,” the Teachers' Organisation said in a statement.

Education Minister Morteza Haji on Saturday promised to resolve the dispute, the official IRNA news agency said.

“There is no cause for anxiety. The problem will be solved in the next days,” he said, without elaborating.

http://www.aljazeerah.info/News%20archives/2004%20News%20archives/March/10%20n/Iran%20teacher%20strike%20forces%20many%20schools%20to%20close.htm
32 posted on 03/10/2004 6:58:24 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran Pressures UN Body In Debate Over Nuclear Program

March 10, 2004
Dow Jones Newswires
The Associated Press

TEHRAN -- Iran tried Wednesday to influence a U.N. agency debate on its nuclear program by warning that it may cease cooperation unless it receives a more sympathetic attitude.

It also said it would resume enriching uranium as soon as its problems with the International Atomic Energy Agency were over.

In a third announcement, Defense Minister Ali Shamkhani told reporters the Iranian military had built nuclear centrifuges for civilian use. It was the first time that Iran has acknowledged that its military had been involved in the nuclear program.

In Vienna, the 35-nation board of governors of the International Atomic Energy Agency prepared for Thursday's debate on Iran 's declared commitment to full transparency on its nuclear program.

The U.S., which suspects Iran is building nuclear arms, wants a draft resolution on Iran to take a tough line because of evidence of secrecy. But the Europeans want to acknowledge that Iran has made substantial, if not complete, steps toward openness.

The draft that was obtained by The Associated Press said the agency noted "with the most serious concern" that Iran 's declarations "did not amount to the correct, complete and final picture of Iran 's past and present nuclear program." But it also praised Iran for signing an agreement that granted a free hand to IAEA inspectors.

Iran regarded the draft unsatisfactory. Iran 's chief delegate to the IAEA, Pirouz Hosseini, told reporters outside the board of governors meeting that the U.S. was pressurizing the Europeans to harden the resolution.

"We have never been involved in any nuclear weapons program ... and the Americans don't want to accept the fact," Hosseini said.

In Tehran, Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi accused the world body of failing to reciprocate.

"We told (IAEA) that cooperation should be bilateral. We take steps and expect the other side to take steps. It can't go one-sided," Kharrazi said.

Kharrazi warned Britain, France and Germany - whose foreign ministers visited Tehran last year to discuss the nuclear issue - that Iran will stop cooperating with them if they fail to resist U.S. pressure at the Vienna meeting.

"We recommend that the three European countries remain committed to their obligations (toward Tehran) and resist U.S. pressure, if they want the project of cooperation between Iran and them to lead to results," Kharrazi said. "Cooperation is a two-way street."

Kharrazi said Iran had a "legitimate right to enrich uranium" as fuel for the nuclear reactor it is building to generate electrical power.

"We suspended uranium enrichment voluntarily and temporarily. Later, when our relations with the IAEA return to normal, we will definitely resume (uranium) enrichment," Kharrazi said.

But the head of IAEA, Mohamed ElBaradei, warned Wednesday that if Iran went back on last year's suspension of enrichment, it would hurt its campaign to convince the world that its nuclear intentions were peaceful.

"I think suspension is ... a good confidence-building measure, and Iran needs to do everything possible right now to create the confidence required," ElBaradei said in Vienna.

One of the reasons for the recent IAEA inspections of Iran 's nuclear facilities was last year's discovery of undeclared uranium enrichment.

Kharrazi accused the IAEA of giving in to U.S. pressure.

"Unfortunately, the agency is sometimes influenced by the United States, while it should maintain its technical and professional identity," Kharrazi said.

Defense Minister Shamkhani said the military industries had produced P-1 centrifuges, which are used for low-grade enrichment, but not P-2 models that are used for weapons-grade enriched uranium.

"We have produced P-1, not P-2, contrary to U.S. allegations," Shamkhani said.

"It's natural in the world that defense industries produce civilian parts," Shamkhani said, adding the industries also produce televisions and parts for civilian planes and vehicles.

The IAEA has questioned Iran on blueprints for the more advanced P-2 centrifuges. Iran responded that the blueprints never got beyond the research stage.

A leading Iranian hard-line editor, Hossein Shariatmadari, urged the government Wednesday to give the IAEA an ultimatum.

"Iran has to set a deadline," Shariatmadari wrote in the newspaper Kayhan. "If Iran 's nuclear dossier is not removed from the agency's agenda, Iran must not only stop allowing unfettered inspections of its nuclear facilities, it must resume uranium enrichment and, possibly, even withdraw from the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty."

The treaty commits its members to peaceful use of nuclear power.

http://online.wsj.com/public/us
33 posted on 03/10/2004 6:59:26 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
"By Cooperating with Europe, We Can Turn the American Threat Into an Opportunity"

March 11, 2004
The Middle East Media Research Institute
MEMRI

Secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council, Hassan Rohani: The World Must Accept Iran's Membership in the World Nuclear Club

Secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council Hassan Rohani, who heads the Iranian delegation for talks with Europe on nuclear matters, presented a report at the meeting of Iran's Assembly of Experts [1] on the additional protocol of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). Rohani called on the international community to accept Iran as a member of the world nuclear club, and urged the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to immediately close its dossier on Iran's violations. [2]

In presenting his report, Rohani claimed that the negative attitude toward Iran had forced it to act "independently" to obtain nuclear knowledge. At the same time, Rohani acknowledged that heavy international pressure from the industrialized states that maintain trade relations with Iran had forced Iran to agree to stricter oversight of its nuclear facilities. He stressed further that Iran's commitment to stop uranium-enriching activity was only temporary, and that Iran was determined to engage in nuclear fuel-cycle activity. Rohani's statements indicate that he sees cooperation with Europe as a means of countering the U.S. threat on Iran. The following is a collection of Rohani's statements, and recent news regarding Iran's nuclear program:

Iranian Violations Investigated by the IAEA

Following heavy American and European pressure on Iran during 2003, Iran agreed to sign the Additional Protocol to the NPT that would permit closer IAEA inspection of its nuclear facilities, including inspections without prior warning and intrusive verification. At the same time, for the past year Iran has been under investigation by the IAEA for a number of NPT violations, such as enriching uranium and establishing a centrifuge plant without reporting it to the IAEA.

Iran Versus the International Community

Rohani was recently quoted as stating that "the U.S. and former U.S.S.R. originated the NPT, the very core of which is that countries possessing nuclear weapons do not have the right to make [these weapons] available to other countries, and that those countries that do not possess this technology do not have the right to pursue it either." [3]

He complained about the international community's stance that "Iran should not gain access to nuclear know-how," adding, "When we encountered the negative attitude of all the Western and Eastern countries, we decided to act independently." [4]

Rohani also stressed that "the world must accept that Iran has [nuclear] fuel cycle [capabilities], and has enriched uranium within Iran's [territory]." [5] He pointed out that the nuclear fuel cycle was completely peaceful and legal, and reiterated the official Iranian position that according to the NPT, countries can legally pursue peaceful nuclear activities, and that the industrialized countries are obligated to assist developing countries in such activities.

'We Abided By American and European Pressure to Sign the Additional Protocol'
In presenting his report, Rohani, who is also a member of the Expediency Council, [6] related the events that motivated Iran to sign the Additional Protocol: "Last April and May, Iran was pressured to sign the additional NPT protocol. When a country signs this protocol, it [can no longer] pursue non-peaceful nuclear activities and hence the pressure is on all countries [not to pursue such activities]. America was the first to pressure us, and then Europe followed suit. [During this time] France and Germany were the first countries to launch a propaganda [campaign] against us. In every single international meeting in which Iranian delegations were present, we were pressured to sign the additional protocol. Gradually we reached the conclusion that each and every industrial country that had trade ties with Iran wanted us to sign the additional protocol. The clear case in point is Japan, which declared [that] the continuation of its cooperation in developing [the] Azadegan oilfield depends upon Iran signing the Additional Protocol. Even some presidents of other countries expressed concerns in telephone conversations with President Khatami."

Rohani also referred to the IAEA report, published in September 2003, which criticized the Iranian violations: "In this report, five cases were outlined as Iranian violations. For example, one violation was that Iran had not reported to the agency on the purchase of certain items from China. Eventually, IAEA experts examined the Natanz nuclear site and [to our surprise] reached the conclusion that … 80% of Iran's pollution was due to uranium enrichment activities. This was really strange for us, because we had not engaged in uranium enrichment activities at a very high scale. A new wave of propaganda warfare was launched against Iran, implying that it is involved in covert nuclear operations.

"Ultimately, in September the agency [i.e. the IAEA] issued an unprecedented anti-Iran declaration. Based on this declaration, Iran [had] to immediately sign and implement the Additional Protocol. One item of the declaration [stipulated] that the case of Iran's nuclear activities could be referred to the UN Security Council… We were obliged to adopt a resolute decision.

"Well, it was obvious that the Americans were [determined to hand] our dossier [over] to the UN Security Council. We decided to hold talks with Britain, Germany, and France, the countries that had played a major role in finalizing the anti-Iran declaration. Senior officials from these countries were invited to Tehran. We told these officials that we did not want to sign the additional protocol, but that we were willing to [talk about] international laws and regulations. However, they insisted that we sign it unconditionally. We also maintained that we should accept the additional protocol only [according to] our own interpretations." [7]

'By Cooperating with Europe, We Can Turn the American Threat Into an Opportunity'

Rohani was recently quoted as saying that the Iranian dossier must be examined in the framework of the IAEA, not by other institutions, and added that Iran must be given the right to continue its peaceful nuclear activity: "We voluntarily agreed to temporarily cease fuel enrichment activities and we had no permanent obligations [i.e. made no permanent commitment] in this respect. After all, we reached an agreement with these European countries, [an agreement] which [later] became the Tehran Declaration." [8]

Rohani noted that Iran agreed to sign the Additional Protocol in compliance with the principle of "give and take," and said that he saw Europe as a force that Iran could call on in the face of the American threat. "Europe stood alongside Iran when the U.S. insisted on handing the Iranian dossier over to the Security Council… So far, we have overcome another American plot against us. We do not think that the U.S. can hand our dossier over to the Security Council after all." [9]

He stressed that Iran should be permitted to "engage in fuel cycle activities," saying, "We need a national will in order to meet this objective. This issue has not yet been politicized [i.e. there is a national consensus on this issue], and we should be watchful that we do not politicize it. America wanted to threaten us by raising this debate. But I believe that by cooperating with Europe, we can turn this [American] threat into an opportunity." [10]

The IAEA Investigation Must Be Closed

Rohani has also recently demanded that the IAEA stop its 13-month investigation of Iran's nuclear violations, saying, "We must arrive at a situation in which the IAEA's board of governors completely closes the dossier of Iran's nuclear activity for peaceful purposes, and removes the matter from its agenda." [11]

The reformist Iranian daily Aftab-e Yazd quoted a top diplomatic source in the Iranian delegation to the IAEA who said that if the Iranian dossier is not closed, Iran will renew its uranium enrichment activities and will even consider halting its cooperation with the IAEA. [12]

On March 9, the secretary of the Supreme National Security Council's Foreign Policy Committee, Hossein Moussavi, warned that Iran would "adopt a new policy" if the IAEA delayed the closing of its dossier by the IAEA board of governors.

He said that "by agreeing to sign and implement the additional protocol to the NPT, Iran has dispelled any complaints by its opponents." [13]

The reformist Iran Daily recently explained, "Iran has allowed IAEA inspectors to visit Iran at will and [this] has created the wrong idea among members of the [IAEA] board of governors – that Tehran is ready to perform on the basis of their wishes… If the IAEA does not … meet Iran's nuclear needs, it should not expect Tehran to continue [its] one-sided cooperation with the Agency and not resume its uranium enrichment activities." [14]






[1] An 86-member group of ayatollahs who nominate Iran's Supreme Leader.

[2] Jaam-e Jam (Iran), March 8, 2004.

[3] Iran Daily, March 8, 2004.

[4] Iran Daily, March 8, 2004.

[5] Jumhour-e Eslami (Iran), March 8, 2004.

[6] The Expediency Council, headed by former Iranian president Ali Akhbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, is a powerful conservative body that arbitrates between the Majlis (Iranian Parliament) and the conservative Guardian Council.

[7] Iran Daily, March 8, 2004.

[8] Iran Daily, March 8, 2004.

[9] Kayhan (Iran), March 8, 2004.

[10] Jumhour-e Eslami (Iran), March 8, 2004.

[11] Jumhour-e Eslami (Iran), March 8, 2004.

[12] Aftab-e Yazd (Iran), March 7, 2004.

[13] http://khabarnameh.gooya.com/politics/archives/007503.php, March 9, 2004.

[14] Iran Daily, March 9, 2004.

http://memri.org/bin/latestnews.cgi?ID=SD67804
34 posted on 03/10/2004 7:00:39 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Powell Insists Iran Give Up Nuclear Ambitions

March 10, 2004
Voice of America
David Gollust

Secretary of State Colin Powell says the United States is not easing its insistence that Iran should give up nuclear weapons ambitions, despite its support for a compromise resolution on Iran at this week's meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna.

Listen to David Gollust's report (RealAudio)

Secretary of State Colin Powell says the United States is not easing its insistence that Iran should give up nuclear weapons ambitions, despite its support for a compromise resolution on Iran at this week's meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna. The compromise between the United States and European allies would put off any possible referral of the issue to the U.N. Security Council for sanctions against Iran until June.
News reports of the compromise spawned headlines in U.S. newspapers that the Bush administration has softened its stand on Iran's nuclear program to appease European allies.

But in Congressional testimony Wednesday, Mr. Powell said the United States had not shifted its position "in the slightest" and continues to hold that Iran should give up all "ambitions and capabilities" to develop a nuclear weapon.

The Secretary told a House Appropriations subcommittee that negotiations over the wording of the key resolution were to be expected, but that he believes the United States obtained a good compromise that protects its interests while reflecting the views of European colleagues.

He said the key to the measure is the implicit threat that a lack of cooperation by Iran with the IAEA will mean a referral to the U.N. Security Council by IAEA board, at its next meeting in June.

"What we have insisted is that there has to be language in this resolution that causes the IAEA to review the situation at their next meeting, and then in June make a judgment as to whether further action should be required and whether there should be other referrals to the Security Council. And that language, I'm confident, I hope, I'm confident - I'm not only hopeful, but confident -- will be reflected in the resolution. But in the writing of these resolutions there are always compromises taking place, there are always discussions taking place," he said.

The draft resolution, to be voted on by the 35 nation board later this week, criticizes Iran for not fully living up to a pledge to be completely open about its nuclear activities, and cites its failure to resolve all questions about uranium enrichment activities.

But it also praises the Tehran government for signing an agreement for snap inspections of its nuclear facilities and other cooperation with the IAEA.

Officials here say the measure balances the U.S. conviction that Iran has a secret nuclear weapons program with the Western European view that more can be done through "constructive engagement" with Iran to clear up questions about its nuclear activities.

Mr. Powell told the Congressional panel that U.S. firmness on the issue caused Russia to take a "hard look" at its nuclear cooperation with Iran, prompted the European Union to get involved, and caused the IAEA to discover omissions in Iranian reporting to the U.N. agency.

He said international pressure is pushing Iran, however reluctantly, in the direction of accounting for its nuclear activities.

He said the United States is not satisfied with what has been achieved thus far, but said the Iranians "are no longer walking around with the free hand" on the issue that he said they had a year ago.

http://www.voanews.com/article.cfm?objectID=C469F784-9FA6-47BE-98A65A9EF773FF29&title=Powell%20Insists%20Iran%20Give%20Up%20Nuclear%20Ambitions&catOID=45C9C78D-88AD-11D4-A57200A0CC5EE46C&categoryname=
35 posted on 03/10/2004 7:01:28 PM 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; ...
Powell Insists Iran Give Up Nuclear Ambitions

March 10, 2004
Voice of America
David Gollust

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/1094866/posts?page=35#35
36 posted on 03/10/2004 7:02:08 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: freedom44
"presidents of all medical schools resign together in protest"

Wow. Hadn't heard that.
37 posted on 03/10/2004 7:07:27 PM PST by nuconvert (CAUTION: I'm an acquaintance of someone labelled :"an obstinate supporter of dangerous fantasies")
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To: F14 Pilot
Thanks for the ping!
38 posted on 03/10/2004 7:53:16 PM PST by Alamo-Girl
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To: DoctorZIn
Getting Serious About Iran

March 11, 2004
The Washington Times
Editorials/Op-Ed

The Bush administration deserves applause for working tenaciously to focus the international spotlight on the danger posed by Iran's nuclear weapons programs.

The compromise reached late Tuesday on a resolution to be considered by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) included language praising Iran's belated cooperation with investigators while criticizing Tehran's failure to resolve questions about its uranium enrichment programs. The question now is what steps the United States should take to reduce the likelihood of an Iranian nuclear breakout.

One person with some sound ideas for dealing with this danger is Henry Sokolski, executive director of the Nonproliferation Policy Education Center in Washington. Mr. Sokolski would begin by having the administration request that the IAEA's safeguards division spell out how much time and effort would be required to certify that Iran is out of the bomb-making business. Second, in preparation for the IAEA's next board meeting in June, as well as upcoming G-8 and NATO summits, Washington should lobby its European allies to adopt a host of country-neutral nonproliferation rules that would affect Iran and other aspiring nuclear powers. These rules, to put it mildly, could make life very uncomfortable for such regimes.

The allies should declare that nations cannot free themselves from their obligation to abide by the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) by announcing their withdrawal unless the IAEA can clearly find them in full compliance and determines that they have dismantled all undeclared nuclear facilities. In addition, all countries should suspend nuclear cooperation with any nation that the IAEA cannot find to be in full compliance with its safeguards agreement until the agency can establish that that country is completely out of the weapons business. Civilian nuclear exports from NPT member nations that the IAEA can't find in full compliance with the NPT should be considered illegitimate.

Mr. Sokolski would ratchet up the pressure on Iran in myriad other ways. For example, the secretary of state should call for help from France, the EU and Japan to declare that they will delay making investments in Iran's oil industry "until and unless the IAEA finds Iran in full compliance or Iran has dismantled the nuclear facilities and materials it forgot to declare from the IAEA as required by its safeguards agreement with the agency."

Washington should work with its allies to prepare against the contingency of Iran using its nuclear capabilities in the future, either to threaten the Straits of Hormuz (through conventional means, including mining) or to use nuclear mines directly.

As we noted yesterday, the United States does not have the luxury of waiting. Iran has become increasingly defiant in recent weeks, demanding that the IAEA end sanctions. Washington and its allies need to confront the danger before it is too late.

http://www.washtimes.com/op-ed/20040310-084644-9669r.htm
39 posted on 03/11/2004 7:27:34 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran's Muffled Coup

March 11, 2004
The Washington Times
Seth Cropsey

Iran's latest coup d'etat did not use guns, but silence. Faced with rising dissent and the prospect of reformists winning more seats in parliament, the country's hard-line mullahs gagged opponents, shut down public debate, and perhaps most important, silenced national media from reporting the facts.

Until that silence is broken, people in Iran and around the world will pay the price.

The coup began with February's elections to the nation's parliament, whose incumbent reformist majority, with President Mohammad Khatami, had challenged the hard-liners' control. But under the pseudo-democratic constitution, only candidates approved by the country's repressive Guardian Council could be on the ballot. In January, the council barred thousands of reformists, including more than 80 incumbent lawmakers. After a three-week sit-in, 125 lawmakers resigned in protest, and reform parties urged people not to participate in the farcical balloting. The unsurprising result put hard-liners in control, despite low voter turnout and many blank ballots.

If more than a quarter of the members of the U.S. Congress staged a three-week sit-in on the floor of the Capitol, and then resigned their seats, you can bet American TV coverage would be 24-7. Not in Iran. As world media reported the deepening crisis, official news sources, including the country's only domestic television sources, stood mute.

Iran's official TV news channel, Voice and Vision, imposed a near-blackout on the MPs' sit-in, and even censored President Khatami's own statements, over protests from his office.

There is, in fact, nothing new about the regime's effort to control information. The Islamic Republic of Iran has consistently restricted the information that reaches the public. There is only one official TV broadcaster, although many Iranians risk owning banned satellite dishes to pick up international TV broadcasts. Newspapers must be licensed by the government, which has shut down scores.

Computer-savvy Iranians have turn to the Internet for news; but Internet service providers need government permission to operate, and there is an extensive official blacklist of banned international news sites. After the February elections, even more Web sites were threatened.

This heavy hand is meant to intimidate and control, but brave journalists continue working. There can be harsh consequences. In a special "Press Court," scores of editors and reporters have been tried and sentenced to jail and even floggings for such crimes as "promoting subjects that might damage the foundation of the Islamic Republic."

As 2004 began, 10 journalists were known to be imprisoned, including respected investigative journalist Akbar Gandji, and the ailing, 74-year-old, Siamak Pourzand, held in solitary confinement and reportedly tortured.

Today, new trials are scheduled for journalists who tried to report on the election crisis.

The hard-liners also employ the threat of violence: Militia thugs break up public meetings to silence speakers they oppose, from reform candidates to Nobel Peace Prize winner Shirin Ebadi. Journalists have also been targets of extrajudicial killings. The case of Canadian photojournalist Zahra Kazemi, murdered last summer by an Iranian intelligence agent, made international news.

What's lost when people lose free speech and a free press? Plenty. Without credible news sources, Iranians can't get the information they need about economic issues like lagging per capita income and corruption; or education, health, and environmental problems; or the fatal unreadiness to respond to catastrophes like the Bam earthquake.

Nor can Iranians get straight answers about their government's military and foreign policies: the extent of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons programs, Iran's support for terrorism; and the worldwide concern these have engendered. Without information — without genuine democratic controls — Iran's secret programs will continue posing a security threat to the U.S. and the Free World.

It is a testament to the Iranian people's love for freedom that, despite the hurdles, they continue to reach for truth, for democracy, for open relations with the world.

In a public-opinion poll sponsored in late 2002 by members of parliament, 75 percent of Iranians supported dialogue with the U.S., and almost half approved of U.S. policy toward their country. The authorities responded by jailing the pollsters.

The Iranian regime's tools of silence speak volumes about the nature of its rule. But Iranians, like captured peoples before them, are trying to search out the information they need.

They deserve our help and are getting it. U.S. broadcasting to Iran includes Radio Farda — "tomorrow," in Iran's Farsi language — and, beginning last July, the daily News and Views televised credible news about issues concerning Iranians.

News and Views reaches millions of Farsi-speaking Iranians who aren't fluent in English, and thus can't benefit from global broadcasts like CNN. And, unlike global broadcasts, News and Views focuses on Iran, permitting real depth of coverage. The program is on the air one half-hour daily.

But News and Views could do more; it could cover even more voices and issues, interview more experts on democracy from the U.S. and other free nations, and increase its dialogue with and among the Iranian people.

"Were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter," said Thomas Jefferson. He went on to explain why.

If ever people lose their knowledge of and involvement in public affairs, then all the officials of government — "Congress & Assemblies, judges & governors, shall all become wolves."

Today, the Iranian people try to keep their country from the wolves of injustice, repression and corruption. They will not succeed until all Iranians have access to real news and views.

Seth Cropsey is director of the U.S. Government International Broadcasting Bureau.

http://www.washtimes.com/commentary/20040310-084641-1937r.htm
40 posted on 03/11/2004 7:28:43 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Washington Wins More Allies Against 'Secret Bomb' Programme

March 11, 2004
The Guardian
Ian Traynor in Vienna

The US and the big European countries buried their deep differences over Iran's nuclear projects yesterday, drafting a tough statement that comes close to having the UN accuse Tehran of pursuing a secret bomb programme.

Alarmed at the steady trickle of new revelations about Iran's nuclear activities despite its protests that it had revealed all, 18 mostly western countries accepted a US-sponsored resolution at a board meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna. The resolution demanded that Iran "undertake immediately full proactive cooperation with the agency to resolve all outstanding issues on an urgent basis".

While Washington sought a formula that threatened Iran with reprisals if it balks, the Germans, French and British wanted milder wording, "not to upset the applecart", according to diplomats taking part in the meeting.

The compromise deferred until June a fuller decision on how to respond to Iran's breaches of its international nuclear commitments - a concession by the Americans, but also a defeat for Tehran which sought to have the Iranian nuclear issue removed altogether from the IAEA's agenda.

"The Iranian file is nowhere near being closed," said a diplomat involved in drafting the resolution.

The Iranians reacted furiously to what officials involved in the negotiations described as a tougher than expected response to the long-running nuclear row.

Tehran accused the EU troika of caving in to American "bullying" and served notice that it would resume its uranium enrichment activities.

The Europeans and the Americans have been seeking to get the Iranians to dismantle their uranium enrichment programmes since Iran was found last year to have been operating a secret 18-year-old enrichment project, the key to obtaining nuclear bomb-grade material.

"Iran has been in breach of its [nuclear] safeguards obligations," said the IAEA chief, Mohammed ElBaradei.

By yesterday, the US-sponsored statement had the support of 18, mainly western, countries on the UN agency's 35-strong board. More arguments are expected today at a meeting which may not end until tomorrow. But diplomats do not expect any major changes to the draft.

The draft voices "the most serious concern" that Iran has not delivered a "correct, complete and final picture" of its nuclear activities, despite its assertions to the contrary and the submission of a dossier last October that purported to be a full record.

The resolution complains that Iran has more advanced designs for centrifuges for enriching uranium than it declared, undisclosed equipment for using lasers to enrich uranium, and unrevealed equipment for a nuclear research reactor that produces bomb-grade plutonium.

All these omissions "require further investigation, not least as they may point to nuclear activities not so far acknowledged by Iran," the resolution states.

Diplomats said this was tantamount to the board declaring that Iran may be pursuing a bomb, a view firmly held by Washington.

Germany, in particular, objected to the hard line taken by Washington, and yesterday's compromise was preceded by days of wrangling and transatlantic sparring.

The Europeans cut a deal aimed at defusing the crisis last October, in effect promising to ensure that Iran is not reported to the UN security council in New York, in return for Tehran's action to "suspend" its uranium enrichment programmes.

"The Germans have been playing hard ball," a diplomat said. "There's no chance the Iranians will be reported for non-compliance to the security council. That's the red line for the Europeans."

The Americans, by contrast, argue that the Iranians are secretly establishing "the architecture" to build a nuclear bomb, but that the IAEA has not yet found the damning evidence.

At a recent internal briefing in Vienna, senior IAEA officials complained that if the Americans have intelligence on unknown nuclear facilities in Iran, they should tell the UN inspectors.

The arguments echo those between Washington and the UN inspectors that preceded the Iraq war and have raged ever since.

The row over Iran has been intensified by the recent unmasking of an extensive black market in nuclear technology centred on Pakistan.

The draft resolution declares that both Iran and Libya obtained nuclear equipment "from the same foreign sources", and demanded "clarification of outstanding questions" on Iran's black market purchases.

Given that Libya also purchased a nuclear warhead design on the black market, the fear is that Iran, buying from the same sources, did likewise.

Libya has admitted running a secret bomb programme, while Iran vehemently denies any such plans.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/international/story/0,3604,1166633,00.html
41 posted on 03/11/2004 7:29:49 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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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”

42 posted on 03/11/2004 11:38:44 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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