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Iranian Alert -- March 23, 2004 [EST]-- IRAN LIVE THREAD -- Americans for Regime Change in Iran
The Iranian Student Movement Up To The Minute Reports ^ | 3.23.2004 | DoctorZin

Posted on 03/22/2004 9:01:41 PM 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. I began these daily threads June 10th 2003. On that date Iranians once again began taking to the streets to express their desire for a regime change. Today in Iran, most want to replace the regime with a secular democracy.

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

1 posted on 03/22/2004 9:01:43 PM PST by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
Anything new going on in Iran today?
2 posted on 03/22/2004 9:02:16 PM PST by Betaille ("Show them no mercy, for none shall be shown to you")
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To: Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; McGavin999; Hinoki Cypress; ...
Join Us At Today's Iranian Alert Thread – The Most Underreported Story Of The Year!

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

3 posted on 03/22/2004 9:03:39 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Add me to your Americans for Iranian Freedom ping list please!
4 posted on 03/22/2004 9:04:10 PM PST by Rabid Dog (Join your FreeRepublic Chapter and make a difference!)
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To: Betaille
The regime is not to happy with this news. -- DoctorZin

EU Freezes Iran Trade Talks Over Nuclear Worries
AP - World News
Mar 22, 2004

BRUSSELS -- The European Union urged Iran on Monday to demonstrate to the U.N. that it's not developing nuclear weapons. The E.U. foreign ministers discussed Iran's nuclear program at a meeting and found that "a number of questions ... remain outstanding."

Iran insists its nuclear program is only for peaceful purposes.

In a statement, the European ministers called on Tehran "to provide full and proactive cooperation" with the International Atomic Energy Agency. The U.N. body recently discovered uranium enrichment equipment and other suspicious activities that the government in Tehran failed to reveal.

Iran later agreed to allow inspections to resume Saturday. The IAEA hopes to have a definitive assessment of Iran's nuclear activities by June.

Iran's problems with the IAEA have come to interfere with E.U. plans for a free trade agreement. Negotiations were halted last June as allegations gathered strength that Iran was developing nuclear weapons.

The E.U. has said the talks can only resume if Iran makes a convincing case its nuclear program serves peaceful ends, it improves its human rights record and contributes more to the search for peace in the Middle East.
5 posted on 03/22/2004 9:05:03 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran & Syria – a match made in hell

Mar. 22, 2004 23:32
Jerusalem Post

If the Bush administration needed another reason to look beyond Baghdad in its war on terrorism, it has just been given one. In late February, Iran's Defense Minister Rear Admiral Ali Shamkhani embarked on a whirlwind tour of Syria and Lebanon. The resulting tightening of ties between Teheran, Beirut and Damascus marks the birth of an ominous new alliance, deeply threatening to American interests.

Shamkhani's diplomatic offensive commenced with a two-day tour of Syria. There, Iran's Defense Minister held a very-public summit with his Syrian counterpart, Lieutenant-General Mustafa Tlas, at which the two hammered out a landmark strategic accord. The new "memorandum of understanding" establishes a joint working group on bilateral military and security issues, paving the way for deeper defense-industrial cooperation between Teheran and Damascus. More significant still, the agreement contains an unprecedented Iranian commitment to defend Syria in the event of either an Israeli or an American offensive, formally making the Ba'athist state a part of Iran's security.

From Damascus, Shamkhani traveled to Beirut, where he held court with the upper echelons of the Lebanese government. In meetings with the country's president, Emile Lahoud, as well as prime minister Rafik Hariri, parliamentary speaker Nabih Berri and army commander Michel Soleyman, he pledged closer military ties with Beirut – and an active Iranian role in Lebanon's emerging military modernization.

The Iranian defense minister also made a point of meeting with the leadership of Lebanon's Shi'ite terrorist powerhouse, Hizbullah, to whom he confirmed that the newly minted security guarantees between Syria and Iran would extend to their country.

The message was unmistakable – the Israeli and American enemy would now "think a thousand times before attacking Lebanon."

TEHERAN'S FULL-COURT diplomatic press is already paying dividends. In an outright show of support, Lebanese President Lahoud has publicly praised the regional importance of the emerging "Teheran, Damascus and Beirut axis."

And Syrian officials – under fire abroad for their government's deep support for terrorism – have similarly made no secret of their enthusiasm for the nascent alliance's deterrent potential.

But these stirrings reflect more than just a broadening of bonds between Iran, Syria and Lebanon. They are indicative of a larger realignment now underway in the Middle East, where the political vacuum created by overthrow of Saddam Hussein's regime has begun to be filled.

Iran is rapidly emerging as the biggest beneficiary of the new regional status quo. Over the past two years, American efforts in the war on terrorism have successfully eliminated Iran's most immediate strategic adversaries – Saddam Hussein's Iraq and the Taliban in Afghanistan – while effectively de-clawing the principal terror threat to the Islamic Republic: the radical, Iraq-based Mujahedeen e-Khalq organization. These moves have left the United States as Iran's principal regional challenger. It is no wonder that Iranian policymakers like Expediency Council Secretary Mohsen Reza'i have begun to view their country as the natural "center of international power politics" in the post-Saddam Middle East.

Teheran has wasted no time translating this vision into action. In recent months, the Islamic Republic has gravitated toward a new, more confrontational strategic doctrine – one that includes a major expansion of Iran's military capabilities and political presence in both the Persian Gulf and the Caucasus. This aggressive agenda has only been solidified by the sweeping victory of regime hard-liners in the country's recent, hotly-contested parliamentary elections.

The trilateral alliance just crafted in Damascus and Beirut is a big part of these plans. Iran's leaders hope that such a radical coalition will blunt the impact of the US-led transformation taking place next door in Iraq on their own restive population, and derail larger American plans for a sea-change in the region's political balance – an initiative they view as a "serious threat to the security, independence and stability of the Islamic countries."

Simultaneously, Teheran is seeking an answer to pro-Western constructs, like the Israeli-Turkish strategic partnership, capable of supplementing American efforts. And, in the midst of the war on terrorism, the Islamic Republic is working hard to ensure the continued relevance of its most potent regional proxy, Hizbullah.

If it manages to accomplish these objectives, Washington might just find that US Middle East policy has become a victim of Teheran's success.

The writer is vice president for policy at the American Foreign Policy Council in Washington, DC.
6 posted on 03/22/2004 9:10:04 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn

Jim Lobe: 3/22/04
EURASIA INSIGHT March 22, 2004

Iranian officials have characterized Washington’s policy-making process as "childish" after a top Bush administration official downplayed the chances of a rapprochement between the United States and Iran. Meanwhile, Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei has called on Iranians to be vigilant against foreign efforts to destabilize the country.

Iran’s conservatives, who regained control over the Iranian legislature in February’s parliamentary election, have been reportedly eager to pursue a rapprochement with Washington. The rationale for normalization, from the point of view of Iranian conservative leaders, is that a greater sense of international stability is needed to increase the chances for the successful implementation of their domestic agenda, which is aimed at providing an outlet for public frustration over the country’s flagging economy. [For background see the Eurasia Insight archive].

Over the last year, Iran has made repeated overtures to the United States, expressing a desire to restart a dialogue on the normalization of relations, according to a March 16 report in the Financial Times. [For additional information see the Eurasia Insight archive]. Tehran’s main aim would be the lifting of US sanctions, an act that would make it immeasurably easier for conservatives to invigorate Iran’s struggling economy.

To demonstrate its good faith, Tehran reportedly offered to cut its support to a variety of radical groups in the Middle East, including the Palestinian terrorist organization Hamas. Iranian officials also may have held out the prospect of talks concerning Tehran’s ongoing efforts to develop nuclear capabilities. Iranian leaders insist that the country’s nuclear program is designed to meet civilian energy needs. International experts worry, however, that Iran’s program may develop weapons-making capabilities. [For background see the Eurasia Insight archive].

The Bush administration never responded to the Iranian feelers. Apparently, fierce differences among top presidential advisors caused policy gridlock within the White House, the Financial Times report suggested.

Iranian officials did not comment on the Financial Times report. Then, in a March 18, television interview broadcast by the CNN network, US National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice dismissed the need for US-Iranian talks. She cited US concerns about the Iranian nuclear program. Rice also mentioned Washington’s suspicion that Tehran may be sheltering leaders of the al Qaeda terrorist organization, and trying to disrupt US stabilization efforts in neighboring Iraq. [For background see the Eurasia Insight archive]. "I don’t think anybody needs to have a conversation with the Iranians, because they know what the problem is," Rice told CNN.

On March 20, the official Iranian news agency IRNA ridiculed Rice’s comments as "another example of contradictory and non-coherent stances in the American policy-making apparatus." The report went on to say that Washington had sent "contradictory" signals in recent months, mentioning specifically the US goodwill gesture of providing humanitarian aid to victims of the late December 2003 Bam earthquake, and the tough US stance on Iran’s nuclear program.

The IRNA commentary suggested that Iran was looking for a more consistent policy coming out of the White House. "Only a fundamental change in US policies would change the existing atmosphere of hostility between the two arch-foes [the United States and Iran]," the IRNA commentary said.

Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman, Hamid Reza Asefi, also heaped scorn on the Bush administration. "America’s childish persistence on its wrong policies has led to an escalation of insecurity in the world," the foreign ministry spokesman said. He added that the US reconstruction struggles in both Afghanistan and Iraq raised questions "about the appropriateness of American policies among its [Washington’s] own allies."

Iranian leaders are now concerned that, rather than engaging Tehran, Washington will undertake measures aimed at destabilizing the Islamic republic, especially in the event that Bush wins re-election in November. Many in Tehran apparently believe that ongoing problems with reconstruction efforts in both Iraq and Afghanistan could prompt the Bush administration to attempt to cast Iran as a scapegoat.

In public comments March 21, Khamenei, the supreme leader, said the United States was "stuck in a quagmire" in Iraq. He went on to caution that the United States was likely to try to destabilize Iran. "The most important duty of people and officials is to be vigilant," IRNA quoted Khamenei as saying. "The enemy should know that any decision it is making against the Iranian nation will be thwarted because Iranians are awake and vigilant."

The shrill tone of recent Iranian rhetoric may be indicative of the conservatives’ profound disappointment over the Bush administration’s refusal to engage. The inability to count on a rapprochement with the United States means the conservatives’ ability to implement their domestic stabilization agenda is in doubt.

Just a few months ago, many observers in both Washington and Tehran believed that a thaw was in the offing. This idea gained momentum in January when the United States dispatched planeloads of emergency aid to Bam earthquake victims, and followed up with an offer to send a high-level delegation to inspect the damage.

In addition, while Washington was highly critical of February’s parliamentary election, it refrained from mounting an intensive effort to discredit the results. Meanwhile, in Iraq, the US-dominated Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) approved plans for the construction of an oil pipeline across the Shatt al-Arab waterway to the Iranian port of Abadan, a project that is expected to be completed by the end of this year. Iranian conservatives had hoped such signals meant that the United States was prepared to parlay. But subsequent events have shown that such hopes were misplaced.

Editor’s Note: Jim Lobe is a freelance reporter specializing in financial affairs. He is based in Washington.
7 posted on 03/22/2004 9:12:18 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
EU: Foreign Ministers Hold Talks On Terror, Iran, And Wider Middle East

By Ahto Lobjakas

EU foreign ministers today are holding their regular monthly meeting in Brussels. Discussions are expected to focus on terrorism, the topic also topping the agenda at the bloc's summit later this week. Talks will also turn to Iran, Syria, and the Wider Middle East -- including today's killing of Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, the founder of the Hamas militant group. Yassin was killed by an Israeli air strike while leaving a mosque in Gaza City.

Brussels, 22 March 2004 (RFE/RL) -- European Union foreign ministers today are continuing discussions on terrorism.

That topic was at the center of an EU interior ministers' meeting on 19 March, and it is also expected to feature prominently in the bloc's two-day summit later this week (25-26 March).

There appears to be broad agreement on a bloc-wide political declaration of antiterrorism solidarity. This will allow member states targeted by an attack to receive quick community aid.

EU leaders later this week also expected to create the office of a new counterterrorism coordinator.

Most member states are also calling for the bloc to pool its intelligence resources.

States appear willing to share police intelligence. They are more reluctant to pool information from individual security services, with many member states rejecting the notion of a "European CIA," similar to the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency.

But EU officials say the new counterterrorism office may include an intelligence unit that brings together information from all the member states.

Germany and France are also pushing for strict timetables to speed up the pace at which member states put existing antiterrorism legislation into practice.

Foreign ministers today will also discuss improving antiterrorism cooperation with non-EU countries.

EU treaties containing counterterrorism clauses have already been signed with Algeria, Lebanon, Croatia, Macedonia, and most South American countries. Talks with Iran, Syria, and the Gulf countries on similar agreements are already in progress.

Today's talks are also expected to focus on the Middle East, which is expected to figure prominently in future U.S.-EU policy discussions.

EU diplomats are looking for any Middle Eastern initiative to address the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. That conflict reached a new crisis point today with the killing in an Israeli air strike of Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, the founder and spiritual leader of the Hamas militant group.

Tens of thousands of Palestinians have staged spontaneous demonstrations in the Gaza Strip and West Bank since this morning's attack. Hamas and other militant groups have threatened swift retaliation.

Ministers today are also likely to look at Iran. The EU is likely to express continued concern over Iran's failure to fully disclose details about its nuclear program to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

An EU official on 19 March said the bloc is adopting a wait-and-see attitude with the new Iranian parliament. The bloc does not expect to relaunch trade and political talks with Tehran until the IAEA finalizes a new assessment on Iran in June.

Relations with Syria will also be addressed. An EU said an association agreement the bloc expects to sign with Damascus in May will be the last step toward the EU's Barcelona process aimed at establishing closer links with the Mediterranean region.

Today's meeting will also confirm a series of EU initiatives at the 60th session of the UN Commission on Human Rights, currently under way in Geneva.

The EU and the United States have cosponsored resolutions criticizing Belarus and Turkmenistan for their lack of progress on rights issues. The EU has also authored statements on the human rights situation in Chechnya and Israeli settlements in the Palestinian territories.

Last week's flare-up of violence in Kosovo is likely to be condemned in an EU statement today. EU officials say they will call on local leaders in the province to settle differences by peaceful means.

The Serbian prime minister, Vojislav Kostunica, is due to visit Brussels tomorrow. His Kosovar counterpart, Bajram Rexhepi, will travel there later this week.

The EU will also issue a statement calling for Serbia's full cooperation with the war crimes tribunal in The Hague.
8 posted on 03/22/2004 9:13:53 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
I am delightd , if not astonished, that the EU is for the moment standing firm.

For the sake of the Iranians, do everything you can to defeat Kerry. He is another Carter..
9 posted on 03/22/2004 9:24:51 PM PST by the Real fifi
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To: DoctorZIn
Will Jack Straw get a backbone now? Is it time to put more pressure on the Brits?
10 posted on 03/22/2004 9:30:39 PM PST by Pan_Yans Wife (Much of your pain is self-chosen. --- Kahlil Gibran)
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To: DoctorZIn
"Iran & Syria – a match made in hell"

Good title.

Wonder what Berman thinks of Iran, Syria & N. Korea?
11 posted on 03/23/2004 4:44:10 AM PST by nuconvert ("America will never be intimidated by thugs and assassins." ( President Bush 3-20-04))
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To: the Real fifi
"I am delightd , if not astonished, that the EU is for the moment standing firm"

Me too. They were waffling before, but seems Madrid scared some sense into them.
12 posted on 03/23/2004 4:46:50 AM PST by nuconvert ("America will never be intimidated by thugs and assassins." ( President Bush 3-20-04))
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To: DoctorZIn
Alcatel Wins Iran DSL Project

MARCH 23, 2004
Light Reading

PARIS -- Alcatel (Paris: CGEP.PA and NYSE: ALA) today announced that it will supply the first DSL network in Iran. This contract has been signed with ADA (Asre Danesh Afzar), an Iranian Private Operator, as part of the Private Access Provider (PAP) governmental plan for DSL privatisation in Iran.

Alcatel will provide and support one hundred thousand DSL lines over the next 3 years, that will provide large numbers of users in Teheran and across the country with a high speed internet connection, and in time get access to a breadth of broadband services. The first phase of the agreement covers 23,000 lines and its deployment should be completed in May 2004.

Under the terms of the contract, ADA will deploy the Alcatel 7300 Advanced Services Access Manager, the industry’s leading broadband access platform with the highest density and lowest power consumption, throughout Iran. Alcatel's broadband access leadership allows it to offer an unequaled service level and an integrated product portfolio that helps operators face their key challenges: increasing coverage, tackling scaling problems, offering more services on their broadband infrastructure and converging voice and data platforms.

“Alcatel’s comprehensive broadband portfolio and global leadership in delivering high quality and cost effective DSL solutions made it an ideal business partner to support us in delivering enhanced broadband solutions to our subscribers,” said Ardeshir Montaseri, Chairman of ADA. “We are also confident that the Alcatel-solution is the most cost effective means of meeting our needs.”

According to Michel Rahier, Chief Operating Officer of Alcatel’s fixed communications activities, “This contract further confirms our commitment to helping to accelerate broadband deployments in emerging markets of the world. Moreover, as Alcatel would be one of the first companies entering the Iranian private operator’s market, it will improve our position in this country.”
13 posted on 03/23/2004 6:09:00 AM PST by F14 Pilot (John Fedayeen Kerry - the Mullahs' regime candidate)
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To: yonif; freedom44; RaceBannon; PhilDragoo; nuconvert; Valin; McGavin999; AdmSmith
Hang Tough

by Ted Belman
Mar 22, '04
Arutz Sheva

Ha'aretz published an article by Aluf Benn entitled "Landau disappointed by Netanyahu's stance on PM's pullout". Evidently, "During Sunday's meeting, Sharon invited his ministers to offer their own, alternative proposals for ways to improve Israel's diplomatic and security situation."

With diminishing respect, that's the problem in a nutshell. Those issues should be secondary. The primary issue is what is the best policy Israel can follow to ensure we keep a large part of Judea, Samaria and Gaza, if not all of it.

Israel is doing a great job now in thwarting terror. True some attacks succeed, but the situation is improving and will continue to improve. Operation Continuing Story to destroy Hamas is going forward with American approval. The United States has decided that there is no chance for anyone to take over Gaza until Hamas is destroyed. Even the European Union is not seriously condemning Israel on this operation. The Palestinian Authority is falling apart and Yasser Arafat won't last forever. Internecine fighting has begun. Now is not the time for Israel to cave.

The US also takes seriously the new treaty between Iran, Syria and Lebanon, which is dedicated to drive the US out of Iraq, among other things. Coupled with the announced intention of Iran to acquire the bomb, the US has no choice but to deal with the threat, irrespective of the Palestinian/Israeli conflict.

Furthermore, when the Western coalition against terror is struggling to hold itself together after Spain announced it would leave Iraq, and more attacks against supporters in the EU are expected, now is not the time for Israel to turn tail. Bush is in no mood for the further weakening of the coalition. My guess is that for this reason alone the US will not agree to the Gaza disengagement.

From a security point of view, Israel should continue what it is doing and perhaps do more, rather than to take the risk of losing control by retreating. Oslo proved the more Israel retreats, the more there is terrorism. While the retreat from Lebanon reduced the number of casualties Israel was suffering, it gave way to establishing Hezbollah as a major force, with Iran and Syria backing it.

According to Israel National News, Binyamin Netanyahu is willing to support the disengagement subject to three conditions:

The first is that Israel must control all entrances and exits to the Gaza Strip, including the Philadelphi route separating Egypt and Gaza.

Secondly, the counter-terrorism partition fence around Judea and Samaria must be completed - including around as-yet undefined "settlement blocs" and Route 443 (the Modi'in-Jerusalem Highway) - before he would agree to the retreat.

Thirdly, Netanyahu said, the Americans must issue public declarations in support of settlement blocs in Judea, Samaria and Gaza and against the so-called "Right of Return" for Arabs who left Israel in 1948.

Netanyahu also said that we must not retreat under fire, but must rather ensure that Gaza-based terrorism is neutralized before a withdrawal.

If he holds firm on his demands, then I, too, would favor the retreat, but the American declaration that he requires must be iron-clad. As we have seen in the past, the US can weasel out of most anything. Their assurances regarding Egypt in the Camp David Accords, and their agreement to give "serious consideration" to Israel's fourteen conditions to accepting the Roadmap are two cases in point.

Nothing short of agreed borders, to Israel's satisfaction, should be the quid pro quo for the retreat, with its attendant risks. Since Israel's position is that the fence is not the final border, it matters little if the US agrees to its location. The US must agree that it will also be the border.

To suggest, as Tzipi Livni and Silvan Shalom have done, that if the US rejects the "Right of Return", then that is reason enough to retreat, is frightening. To suggest that such a retreat is well worth it to get such support suggests that Israel is indeed weak and is vulnerable to having the "Right" imposed on it. I would like to believe that Israel can just say "no" to the "Right of Return" and need not give anything to prevent it.

This weakness is further reflected in the following extract: "Government sources in Jerusalem said that in individual conversations with the ministers ahead of Sunday's meeting, it has become clear that none of them think that Israel's current situation is particularly good. 'The argument is over the way to escape this situation,' said one."

I, for one, fail to understand why Israel's position is so weak. Sure, the World, including the State Department, supports a Palestinian State with '67 borders providing there is an end to terror, but what can they do if Israel says "no" and if the Arab terror continues? What, pray tell, are these ministers worried about? Without Israel's consent, the World can do nothing. And don't forget, the American people support Israel's fight against terror and its claim to the land.

The problem in Israel is that the Left doesn't value retaining the settlements and considers them bargaining chips to get peace and diplomatic approval. It is even prepared to forgo the bargaining value and to just withdraw. The Right, on the other hand, embraces the settlements as Israel's and will not concede them for a peace agreement. This is the central debate in Israel. Is Israel fighting for security or for its rights and its land? As to whether or not giving up the settlements will achieve peace and strengthen Israel or instead will weaken Israel is part of this debate.

What makes Israel weak is not that the World is against it, but that it is divided. The Left wants to give up what they don't value, land, for a mess of pottage, namely illusory peace and good will. The Right will have none of it and rightly so.

How is Israel to keep the settlements? Hang tough, rout the terrorists, reject the freeze, build the fence to suit its interests - not only in security, but also in keeping the land - and keep putting facts on the ground.
14 posted on 03/23/2004 6:41:24 AM PST by F14 Pilot (John Fedayeen Kerry - the Mullahs' regime candidate)
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To: DoctorZIn
"Supreme Leader" on Yassin's Assassination

March 22, 2004
Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting

Tehran -- Supreme Leader of Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei condemned here Monday the assassination of Hamas founder and spiritual leader Sheikh Ahmed Yassin by the Zionist regime.

In a message, Ayatollah Khamenei said "I was informed that the sinful hands of the Zionist occupying regime committed a heinous crime and assassinated Hamas founder and spiritual leader Sheikh Ahmed Yassin."

"Undoubtedly, martyrdom was the wish of this pious man but this cannot decrease the magnitude of the sin the Zionist criminal occupiers committed", the Supreme Leader said.

"The blood of Ahmed Yassin will nourish the Islamic resistance and will further flame Palestinians' anger.

His oppression will hoist the flag of the Palestinians' oppression", the Leader said.

The message added "Yassin's weak and disabled body was the only thing they got. But they cannot deprive Palestinians from his thoughts and his way." "The spirit of Sheikh Yassin is alive and his thoughts, which is now further highlighted, will be the inspiration for Palestinian youth, Ayatollah Khamenei stressed.

"The occupying criminals should know that their stupid showdown is the greatest witness to their failure and weakness. The Zionist Regime is doomed to annihilation. "Palestine belongs to Palestinians and any stubbornness against this inalienable right i s doomed to failure," Ayatollah Khamenei concluded.
15 posted on 03/23/2004 9:04:13 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
EU adopts anti-terrorism measures

Washington Times - By Jerry Seper
Mar 23, 2004

Brooklyn man has been arrested by federal agents on charges of illegally shipping missile components, radar equipment and F-4 fighter parts through a company in Israel for later transfer to buyers in the Middle East.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) spokesman Dean Boyd yesterday said Leib Kohn, 70, was arrested Friday on charges of violating the Arms Export Control Act and the International Trafficking in Arms Regulations. He was named last week in a criminal complaint in U.S. District Court in Bridgeport, Conn.

His arrest corresponded to the arrest Thursday by Israeli police of Eli Cohen, an Israeli arms dealer investigated in the past in connection with the illegal shipment of weapons to Iran, according to Mr. Boyd. In 2002, Mr. Cohen was the focus of an Israeli probe into accusations he transferred parts for armored personnel carriers to Iran. A request by Israel police that he be indicted was later rejected by prosecutors.

According to the complaint, Mr. Kohn obtained from Radio Research Instrument Co., a Waterbury, Conn., manufacturer, munitions over several months whose export is controlled by the State Department. The complaint says he shipped the items to Israel without the required State Department licenses.

The complaint says some of the exported items were for use in military radar, F-4 Phantom jet fighter aircraft and missile systems, and they left the United States bound for Israel. Mr. Boyd said ICE agents do not believe Israel was the final destination, but an investigation is continuing.

The complaint also says ICE agents worked with the Israeli national police, requesting they search a warehouse owned by QPS, an Israeli company, where they recovered some of the items Mr. Kohn obtained in Connecticut — including components of the Hawk missile and parts used in a radar system installed in warplanes.

Mr. Kohn was released on $200,000 bond after a court appearance Friday before a U.S. magistrate. Prosecutors said they would present the case to a federal grand jury in an effort to obtain an indictment.

"This case demonstrates that those who endanger U.S. security for the sake of profits will ultimately be held accountable," said Robin Avers, who heads the ICE office in New Haven, Conn. "Halting the illegal export of munitions and sensitive technology is one of the highest priorities of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement."

Mr. Boyd said the military items at the heart of the case represent "a threat to Americans at home and abroad."

U.S. Attorney Kevin J. O'Connor in Bridgeport, whose office in handling the case, described assistance by the Israeli national police as "vital to the success of the investigation thus far," adding that federal authorities would "continue to work with the international law enforcement community to ensure that military items built in the United States do not fall into the wrong hands."

"This office is committed to preserving the integrity of the licensing process and will prosecute violations of the export statutes to the fullest extent," Mr. O'Connor said.
16 posted on 03/23/2004 9:06:03 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
"Undoubtedly, martyrdom was the wish of this pious man ..." ...blah blah blah.
He got his wish.
17 posted on 03/23/2004 9:28:07 AM PST by nuconvert ("America will never be intimidated by thugs and assassins." ( President Bush 3-20-04))
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To: DoctorZIn
Norooz named Iranian-American Friendship Day by San Diego
By Badi Badiozamani, Center for East-West Understanding

I am pleased to announce that the city of San Diego through issuing a proclamation, has named March 20, 2004 (Norooz day) as the "Iranian-American Friendship Day".

In response a plaque containing a replica of Cyrus the Great's declaration of Human Rights was presented to the mayor of San Diego. The proclamation is being sent to you as an attachment. And below is the text of thanking remarks for your review.

Text of Badi Badiozamani's address upon receiving the Iranian-American Friendship Day proclamation:

Honorable Mayor Murphy & City Council members,

As you know, President Bush and several state governors have issued proclamations wishing Iranians a happy Norooz. But Iranians all over the world will be very proud, happy and grateful that this city has gone one step further to use the Persian New Year as an occasion to proclaim an Iranian-American Friendship Day.

It will be a distinct honor and privilege for me, as the founder of the Center for East-West Understanding- whose mission is to work to reduce extremism & violence by fostering understanding among and bringing the peoples of the world together- to disseminate your message throughout the world.

For thousands of years, Norooz has brought an occasion for new and renewed friendship to the people of the Middle East as well as central, southern & eastern Asia. Today, I am honored to be accompanied by Mrs. Najat Sadeghi, Hamida Askar, Shadia Mohammad of the Kurdish people of Iraq, Mr. Ashraf Yosofi of Afghanestan, Mr. Nazim Akburak of the Kurdish people of Turkey as unofficial representatives of many countries that celebrate Norooz. Your declaration today formally acknowledges Norooz's more recent role as a spark for strengthening relationships between Americans and the peace loving peoples of the Middle East. It is my hope and dream that our efforts in San Diego will be but one seed in a blossoming field of mutual friendship and tolerance.

I wish to present to the people of San Diego, as a token of appreciation, a replica of the decree on tolerance given by Cyrus the Great. It reads:

The First Declaration of Human Rights

Decree of Cyrus the Great, founder of the Persian Empire, granting national and religious freedom to the peoples of Babylon in 542 B.C.

When I entered Babylon...I did not allow anyone to terrorize the land... I kept in view the needs of Babylon and all its sanctuaries to promote their well-being. The citizens of Babylon... I lifted their unbecoming yoke (slavery). Their dilapidated dwellings I restored. I put an end to their misfortunes.

Thus said the Lord to his anointed, to Cyrus, whose right hand I have holden...(Isaiah, XLV-1-3)

Presented to the people of San Diego on 3/20/2004

By Badi Badiozamani, Ph.D.

Center for East-West Understanding

Mayor Murphy, Council member Atkins and other distinguished Council members, the House of Iran and the Persian community in the United States seek your blessing and support in placing a plaque containing Cyrus' message of tolerance and freedom in Balboa Park. We are prepared to bear the expenses. We hope you will see this, as we do, as a way of further encouraging both Americans and Iranians to learn more about the history of peace and tolerance in the Middle East and the humanity that brings our two cultures together.

As part of this continued learning, allow me to humbly ask you to please support the Persian Cultural Center, the Iranian School of San Diego, the House of Iran and other non-profit entities in our community that contribute tremendously to the cultural heritage and vitality of this great city in their efforts to educate both Iranians and Americans.

May the new Persian year bring friendship, peace and progress to San Die and the world
18 posted on 03/23/2004 10:29:54 AM PST by freedom44
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To: F14 Pilot; the Real fifi
Unfortunately, the EU countries are so in bed with the regime, that even the Madrid bombings won't be enough to end their relationships.
19 posted on 03/23/2004 10:41:23 AM PST by nuconvert ("America will never be intimidated by thugs and assassins." ( President Bush 3-20-04))
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To: nuconvert
I'm afraid that may be right, but for the moment they aren't..and that "is a good thing".
20 posted on 03/23/2004 10:56:43 AM PST by the Real fifi
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To: DoctorZIn
EU Freezes Out Iran Trade Talks

March 23, 2004
Irish Independent

The European Union will not resume trade talks with Iran because of worries over the country's nuclear programme, officials in Brussels said last night, dashing Tehran's hopes of a potentially lucrative agreement.

Iran wants negotiations on a trade and co-operation agreement with the bloc to resume after they were put on hold last year because of doubts about its nuclear programme. The deal would give Iranian goods preferential access to European markets.

"The ministers did not resume discussions on the trade talks given that it is considered premature until Tehran makes more progress on the nuclear question and other politicalaspects," said a spokeswoman for EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana.

Washington accuses Iran of using its nuclear power programme as a front to build a bomb.
21 posted on 03/23/2004 11:50:47 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
What to do About Pyongyang and Teheran

March 22, 2004
The Jerusalem Post
Bennett Ramberg

Once again Teheran has ducked Washington's efforts to hold it accountable for violating the nuclear nonproliferation treaty (NPT). Given the risk a nuclear armed Iran would pose to regional security, its feat – along with North Korea's continuing nuclear challenge – ought to prompt new strategies to reverse nuclear transgressors.

In a report released last month, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
concluded that Iran continued to hide enrichment and polonium – a radioactive substance which can trigger a nuclear blast – activities that could service a nuclear weapons program.

Despite the finding, the IAEA Board of Governors –over US objections – this month decided to give Teheran yet another opportunity to come clean.

In his attempt to encourage Iran's fidelity to the NPT, the Agency's director general, Mohammed ElBaradei, expressed "the hope this will be the last time any aspect of the program has not been declared to us."

However, the response of Hasan Rohani, Iran's representative, provides little confidence: "We have other research projects which we have not announced to the agency and do not think it is necessary to announce them to the agency."

Teheran's decision to delay the next round of IAEA inspections further demonstrates its defiance.

Unfortunately, despite resolutions "deploring" Iran's lack of cooperation, the IAEA is incapable of dealing with such challenges: Other than a bully pulpit, it has no enforcement mechanism. As a last resort, its Board of Governors can issue a resolution of non compliance and refer the matter to the United Nations Security Council.

Last year it did just that in the case of North Korea. The results were not reassuring. In February 2003 the agency reported its "inability to verify non-diversion of nuclear material that is subject to safeguards."

Hardly a surprise – the month before Pyongyang expelled IAEA inspectors and then announced its withdrawal from the NPT – the Security Council froze. It was unable even to come up with a resolution condemning Pyongyang. No doubt divisions over Iraq had an important impact. But Iraq's expulsion of inspectors in 1998 already demonstrated the council's impotence, a precedent that would haunt UN members attempting to bridle Washington's ardor for military action.

North Korea – a far better armed adversary located on the doorstep of its vulnerable kin to the south – posed a more difficult challenge. Frustrated by the United Nations, but bogged down in Iraq, the Bush administration took a different tact. It mobilized China, Japan, Russia and South Korea in a diplomatic offensive to woo Pyongyang to abandon its nuclear investment. To date, negotiations have generated no material progress and concern lingers that the North is using time to bolster its nuclear capacity.

THE NUCLEAR weapons ambitions of both Pyongyang and Teheran beg the question: how do we reverse nonproliferation violators?

Enforcing treaties in the anarchical world of international politics is an old problem. But in the current era it is all the more important given the risk that nuclear materials can migrate into the hands of terrorists.

The solution calls for new international standards that would promise nonproliferation treaty violators sure and swift consequences. Embodied in a new nonproliferation action template, enforcement would begin within two weeks of an IAEA declaration of noncompliance. Sanctions against the violator would become progressively more intense and mount quickly:

Weeks 1 to 2, international calls for compliance "or else."
Week 3, suspension of international commerce.
Week 5, ban on international travel.
Week 7, naval and air blockades to enforce all prohibitions.
Week 9, military action.

But there remains a practical problem: the enforcement mechanism. The Security Council would be the obvious candidate. It best represents the cross section of global interests. But as Iraq and North Korea cases demonstrate, the Council has the propensity to dither. Furthermore, the United Nations itself has no standing instrumentality for enforcement.

Another candidate would be the membership of Washington's Proliferation Security Initiative. The dozen or so nations already have assumed the mission to intercept nuclear contraband. However, the membership is not effectively organized to impose a template sanctions. Of course this could change.

NATO would be a third alternative. As a military alliance, it already maintains a comprehensive capacity to enforce the template. Finally, United States could remain the compliance guarantor of last resort.

At first blush, the template's proposed time table and sanctions may appear draconian. But this ignores the template's purpose: establishment of a credible standard of punishment that deters nations from violating their non proliferation vows.

In so doing, it promotes a practical measure that fills the nuclear nonproliferation action vacuum that exists today.

The writer served in the State Department's Bureau of Politico-Military Affairs in the first Bush administration. Dr. Ramberg is currently authoring a book entitled Booby-Trapped: Can We Prevent a Nuclear 9/11?.
22 posted on 03/23/2004 11:52:06 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
The World of Megaterrorism

March 19, 2004
The Wall Street Journal
André Glucksmann

PARIS -- Read carefully the statement that claimed responsibility for the Madrid massacres. Al Qaeda puts everyone, from the Crusaders to the Jews, all countries who sent troops not just to Iraq but to Afghanistan as well, in their gun sights. In other words, all of Europe -- Berlin and Paris, no less than Rome, London or Warsaw. France merits special condemnation for its ban on the Islamic veil in public schools.

Mad is the European who thinks himself immune for having opposed Saddam Hussein's overthrow. No accommodation provides insurance against attack. No public building, no train platform, no sidewalk is spared by the Islamist butchers. "Death train," "death's black smoke," "the wind of death," the bleak metaphors fly over the borders in the name of al Qaeda. The bombs in Madrid, they say, are the "answers to the crimes you have committed Iraq and in Afghanistan."

In manipulating the Spanish election, terrorism proclaims its gospel and applies it in practice. The perfect timing of March 11 is the monstrous example. Little does it matter that the 201 dead and the 1500 wounded were working class people, most likely opposed to an intervention in Iraq -- as were some 90% of the Spanish. The "human material" has no value for the terrorists who prove the strength of their convictions and the power of their weapons with the murder of the disarmed, whoever they may be and whatever they may think, whether believers or not. It was an encore, as everyone said: On this March 11, 2004, Europe lived its own September 11, the horror of Manhattan all over again.

Except this time the assassins can proclaim they have won. It took them three days to sway popular opinion. The Popular Party of Jose María Aznar, the expected winner, got trounced. "Punished!" they said. But by whom? What's the point of political campaigns, meetings, reports, programs and debates if within a few hours, the bombing of packed train cars can reverse the result? This final landslide, that no polls had predicted, is entirely due to the Atocha station catastrophe and the terror it spread. How could the terrorists not assume that they are the decision-makers, and that terrorism is now stronger than democracy? If the Socialists brought to govern Spain keep their pledge (made before the massacre) to withdraw from Iraq, they will confirm the killers' innermost conviction: Crime pays -- and the greater the horror, the more efficiently.

"But of course not," object the wishful thinkers, Mr. Aznar lost because his alliance with George W. Bush was unpopular. Nonsense! The alliance was just as unpopular three days before the elections, but the Popular Party was still favored then, and his opponents did not hope to win back many "antiwar votes." Without the bombs, without the bloodbath, the shouts of "Aznar assassin" would have sounded ludicrous. But Madrid's ground zero panicked the minds and awoke the demagogues, ready to invert responsibility. Were there not already weak minds -- Lenin's "useful idiots" -- who eagerly claimed that Mr. Bush and the CIA had planned the fall of the Twin Towers?

With hundreds of dead, more than a thousand wounded and the threat of another imminent terrorist attack, Mr. Aznar did not see, know and understand everything within 24 hours. Should a head of government be blamed for not being God? Should he be imagined plotting a Machiavellian scheme to cheat his people without cheating himself, as some kind of extra-lucid devil pulling the strings of a conspiracy as huge as it would be absurd? Stop this delirium.

One rule, one and only one firm rule must impose itself on Europe after this tragedy. In the event of another electoral hijacking, voting must be immediately postponed. The governed and the governing must both be given the time to recover their right minds. They must be able to assess and address the horror, its antecedents and its consequences; cool down before undertaking an informed vote. Let a people abruptly thrown in the abysses of hell maintain the suspense for a fortnight or two, so that it can exercise its sovereign power with sovereignty!

Right at the moment, fearing to confront the true culprit, a virtual culprit was caught in Spain. Mr. Aznar replaced Osama bin Laden. A magic trick -- an exercise in exorcism. With no grip on the true mastermind, some voters find imaginary guilt and decide to symbolically kill through the ballots their own head of government. Illusionists arise to face the blackmailers, a consoling witchcraft dreams of itself as a worldwide antiterrorist operation. In front of the candles lighted for the victims, banners cursed the demons: In small case the Basque terrorists "ETA," then "bin Laden," in bigger letters "Bush," while the huge letters spelled "Aznar." The world is upside down.

"Not in the least," object the sincere or the false naïfs: The conservative government destroyed itself by hiding the truth and pointing to ETA instead of al Qaeda. What a miserable alibi. As soon as the news broke, every single Spaniard -- backed by 20 years of bloody memories -- including the Socialist winner Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, and even a majority of Basques, were inclined to follow the ETA trail. Within 48 hours, the police, the intelligence services, the press and the ministers rectified their initial assumptions. As they were going to the ballot, the voters had heard of everything that was known, and Spanish democracy and its institutions had worked.

But some of the protesters were still waving around the lie of a "state lie;" and numerous voters, perfectly well informed, changed their minds and chose to bow down without regrets to the blackmail of their fellow citizens' assassins. A minute of silence, followed by a night of rejoicing for the electoral winners. What a short memory. Al Qaeda -- oh sorry! "the Arab resistance," to use the words of the spokesman of Batasouna/ETA -- has waged its elections campaign with corpses, and the ballot box has granted its diktat. Whether we like it or not: "Welcome to the world of megaterrorism!"

Time has come for decisions. Either Europe unifies to resist the engineers of the apocalypse, following Tony Blair. Or it poses as an opponent of the United States, following the pseudo-"camp of peace" led by Jacques Chirac, Vladimir Putin and the hesitating Gerhard Schroeder. The "viva la muerte" chanted by the Islamist legions vindicates Tony Blair. But the terror they spread, petrifying European citizens, threatens to lead to resignation after resignation.

Rome, Paris, Athens, Warsaw, Berlin...? Don't ask who's next! "Never ask for whom the bell tolls, it tolls for thee." Hemingway the anti-Francoist was quoting John Donne, an 18th century poet. Bin Laden's mercenaries take their inspiration from the Spanish fascist Millán Astray: "You want life, we want death." Will Mr. Zapatero find the voice of Miguel de Unamuno, the independent thinker of Salamanca who denounced the fascist general's "cry of necrophilia," and stand up to today's nihilist killers? It is never too late to prevent a disaster.

Mr. Glucksmann is the author, most recently, of "Ouest Contre Ouest" (West Against West), published in Paris last year by Plon.,,SB107964901046859583-search,00.html?collection=autowire%2F30day&vql_string=Glucksmann%3Cin%3E%28article%2Dbody%29
23 posted on 03/23/2004 11:54:52 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; McGavin999; Hinoki Cypress; ...
The World of Megaterrorism

March 19, 2004
The Wall Street Journal
André Glucksmann
24 posted on 03/23/2004 11:56:52 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
One rule, one and only one firm rule must impose itself on Europe after this tragedy. In the event of another electoral hijacking, voting must be immediately postponed. The governed and the governing must both be given the time to recover their right minds. They must be able to assess and address the horror, its antecedents and its consequences; cool down before undertaking an informed vote. Let a people abruptly thrown in the abysses of hell maintain the suspense for a fortnight or two, so that it can exercise its sovereign power with sovereignty!

I thoroughly disagree with this. We would NOT do this in America. Elections must continue, as planned. It isn't the timing of the election that was the problem. The spineless electorate wrecked their own havoc.

25 posted on 03/23/2004 12:16:07 PM PST by Pan_Yans Wife (Much of your pain is self-chosen. --- Kahlil Gibran)
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To: F14 Pilot
Sure, the World, including the State Department, supports a Palestinian State with '67 borders providing there is an end to terror, but what can they do if Israel says "no" and if the Arab terror continues?

What is this "end to terror" fairy tale?

What does "the World" or "the State Department" have to do with Israel's security?

Bush said "We will not require a permission slip to defend America."

So should it be with Israel.

The "Road Map" is just more denial: the Pallies still live to kill Jews and destroy Israel.

As for the current regime in Iran: it is now (and perhaps has always been) the headquarters for world terrorism.

It hosted the annual terrorists' jamboree, and has been responsible for the 1983 Beirut Embassy bombing and the 1996 Khobar Towers bombing.

It is in Iraq conducting attacks and is behind Hezbollah as it assumes control of Hamas.

There will be no security and freedom in the region for anyone until the Ayatollah gets the Complete Ceaucescu.

Arafat's head in a jar will be an object d'arte but not an essential.

26 posted on 03/23/2004 1:50:56 PM PST by PhilDragoo (Hitlery: das Butch von Buchenvald)
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To: DoctorZIn
If the Socialists brought to govern Spain keep their pledge (made before the massacre) to withdraw from Iraq, they will confirm the killers' innermost conviction: Crime pays -- and the greater the horror, the more efficiently.

They are cowards in a mutual embrace with Jean-Fraud Kerry.

The terror does not sway America, Israel, Poland.

For terrorists the reward is not virgins, just cobras breathing fire.

27 posted on 03/23/2004 2:27:45 PM PST by PhilDragoo (Hitlery: das Butch von Buchenvald)
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To: knighthawk; McGavin999; SJackson; tet68; Eala; Stultis; river rat; risk; F14 Pilot; DoctorZIn; ...

Hey everyone - I'm back after being banned for a week.. What's the word? Good to be back - hopefully these mods won't get all trigger happy and ban those of us from again.. it's starting to get pretty annoying.. -United

28 posted on 03/23/2004 2:31:37 PM PST by faludeh_shirazi
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To: faludeh_shirazi
Welcome back, faludeh!!
29 posted on 03/23/2004 2:34:20 PM PST by Eala (Sacrificing tagline fame for... TRAD ANGLICAN RESOURCE PAGE:
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To: faludeh_shirazi
Glad to see you.
I hope to see you more often.
I love your posts.
30 posted on 03/23/2004 3:29:18 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Aid Agencies Scramble to Deal with Influx of Refugees from Iran

March 23, 2004
Electronic Iraq

BAGHDAD -- Aid agencies and US administrators are scrambling to deal with the number of Iraqi refugees who have returned from Iran in the past few months. Up to 1,500 are returning on buses every week, and this could double in coming weeks, Pascal Marlinge, director of the Italian NGO Intersos in Iraq, told IRIN in Baghdad. The figures are based on registrations at a refugee transit centre set up in the southern city of Basra, Marlinge said.

According to estimates from the US-led authorities governing Iraq, up to 50,000 people may have returned over the past year, but accurate figures are hard to establish.

Since 19 November 2003, 19 convoys of Iraqi refugees, totalling 5,227 people, have returned to Iraq voluntarily with assistance from the office for the UN Commissioner on Human Rights (UNHCR), Enda Savage, the agency's regional repatriation coordinator, told IRIN from Jordan. However, the UNHCR could not assess the number of spontaneous returns, he said.

Iran hosts the largest number of Iraqi refugees in the world at around 202,000, according to the UNHCR. Iraqis have fled to Iran since the mid-1970s, escaping war and persecution, with many arriving following the 1991 Gulf war.

Many were also forced out in the past 10 years when the former regime of Saddam Hussein drained marshlands in the south, taking away the livelihoods of thousands of people. In some places, people are trying to re-flood the region, a complicated process which often displaces other people who have built homes in places once covered by water.

Refugees now want to return to reclaim their land, Marlinge said. This is coupled with pressure from within Iran itself, he added, with the government seemingly encouraging Iraqis to leave. Although recognising that it's hard for aid groups to tell exactly what's going on in Iran, since most are not allowed to work there, Marlinge said Iran was also struggling to take care of other refugees from Afghanistan.

Iran has the world's largest refugee population, with over two million Afghans living in the country.

Marlinge was optimistic that conditions had improved sufficiently in Iraq for the refugees to return. "We will see migration, so we must be ready to welcome them," he said. "We have developed a lot of infrastructure to help them."

When refugees come to the transit centre, they get food and sign up for a ration card to be eligible to receive more food in the future, as well as receiving mine awareness training, Marlinge said.

"Last year, there was chaos in Iraq. Now there is rebuilding in education and health care systems," he said. "The conditions for return are getting easier and they see there is more support for them."

However, the UNHCR is less convinced. Citing security concerns and a lack of infrastructure to cope with returnees, the organisation has appealed to governments to ban forced repatriations. Nor is it promoting voluntary returns. It is, however, facilitating - in close coordination with host governments and upon clearance by Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) - the return of individuals who want to go back to Iraq voluntarily despite current conditions.

Looking at those who have made the journey back spontaneously it is hard to know where many end up once they arrive. Many homes were destroyed by the former regime or are now occupied by other families.

Some communities are bursting at the seams with recent arrivals who appear to be staying with relatives and neighbours, said Jose Fernandez, a programme manager at International Medical Corps (IMC), a US-based NGO. Hundreds of such people seem to be coming back into the country through informal border crossing points, he said.

In one village, for example, the population has grown from an estimated 2,500 to more than 40,000, Fernandez said. In another rural area, a population of 500 people has grown to 3,000. These estimates are based on each extended family returning having up to 11 people, he said.

However, US administrators announced over the weekend that they will close 16 of 19 legal border crossing points between Iraq and Iran in an attempt to stem terrorism, which could affect the flow of returnees. Fernandez said many things are currently being smuggled across remote border crossing points, including drugs and weapons.

IRIN-Asia, Tel: +92-51-2211451, Fax: +92-51-2292918, Email:
31 posted on 03/23/2004 3:57:05 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
IAEA Chief Urges Dialogue to Make Mideast Free Of WMDs

March 23, 2004
Dow Jones Newswires
The Associated Press

CAIRO -- The head of the U.N. nuclear watchdog agency on Tuesday called for an urgent dialogue among Middle Eastern countries - including Israel - to make their region free of weapons of mass destruction.

Mohammed ElBaradei, director of the International Atomic Energy Agency, spoke to reporters on his arrival in Cairo, where he will meet Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak on Wednesday.

"There are a lot of voices in the international community calling for creating a region free of weapons of mass destruction in the Middle East so that the region enjoys security and stability," ElBaradei told reporters on his arrival in Cairo.

He said he had already called for a dialogue to build regional security parallel with the peace process.

"There must be a dialogue on how to envision the region, including Israel, free of weapons of mass destruction and with limits on conventional weapons, especially as the region has seen war for more than 50 years. This strategic dialogue should start now before tomorrow," ElBaradei said.

The U.N. General Assembly has already adopted a "nuclear-free Mideast" resolution.

Israel is believed to be the only Middle Eastern country with nuclear weapons, though it has never confirmed or denied this.

Iran , which admitted it was enriching uranium but denied having a weapons program, recently agreed to surprise U.N. inspections of its atomic facilities. Libya also recently agreed to dismantle its long-secret nuclear and other terror weapons programs under international supervision.

ElBaradei said his talks Wednesday with Mubarak and Foreign Minister Ahmed Maher would include regional security issues and the nuclear dossier of both Iran and Libya.

He said he would visit Iran early next month for "deep and comprehensive" talks and to urge more cooperation with the IAEA.

ElBaradei said Iran suspended uranium enrichment processing as a confidence-building step, but, "There are a lot of needed steps to be adopted by Iran before the IAEA concludes its work there."

He didn't elaborate. He said with Iran 's continued constructive cooperation and full transparency, the IAEA will be able to reach positive conclusions concerning Iran 's nuclear program.

On Libya, ElBaradei said that after a few months the IAEA would have "fully examined" Libya's former nuclear program.
32 posted on 03/23/2004 3:57:57 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn

33 posted on 03/23/2004 3:58:46 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Osama & Friends

March 23, 2004
National Review Online
Barbara Lerner

Al Qaeda isn't the only terrorist group we're up against.

The real al Qaeda — the al Qaeda that attacked us on September 11, the al Qaeda we are hunting in Pakistan and Afghanistan right now — is a dangerous enemy, but it's not the only al Qaeda. There's another, equally dangerous al Qaeda: the mythical, ten-foot-tall al Qaeda we create when we give the group credit for every major terrorist attack, everywhere in the world, heedless of evidence that, in many cases, points elsewhere. The press does that, routinely. In the collective media mind, when it comes to terrorism, if it's international, it must be al Qaeda, and if it's al Qaeda, then the reflex assumption is that local and/or regional terrorist groups can't be involved. They're off the hook, along with the terror-sponsoring states that are currently attacking us by proxy.

The reality we face is nothing like this one-dimensional caricature. In the terror world of the 21st century, al Qaeda is not the only terrorist entity that threatens us; neither is it the only terror group with an international reach. There are at least a half dozen others in the Middle East alone, and it's a great mistake to let them all hide behind the slogan "al Qaeda did it." Al Qaeda didn't create these other terrorist groups and they won't just vanish when we wipe al Qaeda out. The Salafists and the Armed Islamic Group that slaughtered upwards of 100,000 civilians in Algeria, then spread to Morocco and on to Spain will still be here, threatening the West. The Muslim Brotherhood that arose in Egypt, assassinated Anwar Sadat, spread to Jordan, Syria, and beyond, and sprouted dozens of violent offshoots in as many lands preceded al Qaeda, and bids fair to survive it. Hezbollah, the terrorist proxy Iran and Syria control, will still be here, still welcoming foreign terrorists from all over the world into Lebanon, funneling them into Iraq, and joining with them in attacks against us and the Iraqi people. Of course we need to get al Qaeda, and we will, but we need to recognize and respond effectively to the other threats that face us too.

To do that, we need to be clear about the fact that the conventional wisdom of striped-pants style "experts" is the opposite of the truth. These "experts" have been telling us for years that Sunni terrorists will never collude with Shiite terrorists, let alone with secular terrorist groups like ETA, the IRA, and the PA. Don't believe them. In the terror world of the 21st century, all these groups not only can but routinely do cooperate with one another — with al Qaeda and its offshoots, Jamat al Islamiya and Ansar al Islam, and on occasion with terrorists from Chechnya, the Caucasus, and beyond. They find it easy to cooperate when it suits their purposes, because they all subscribe to one overriding article of faith: The enemy of my enemy is my friend, at least for the moment.

Because we don't grasp this, we make al Qaeda look mightier and more fearsome than it is, and fail to understand or take effective action against other terrorist groups and states that pose real threats to us and to our allies. There are many examples of this. Let me offer three specific ones below, then conclude by spelling out some of the more general ways in which these myths and misperceptions help our enemies, hurt us, and retard our progress in the war on terrorism.

Let's look first at the March 11 attack on Spain's morning rush-hour trains, and the way the press reported it. Evidence that Islamic terrorists from abroad were involved in the multiple, simultaneous train bombings in Madrid is persuasive, but the conclusion the press and the Spanish Socialist party instantly leapt to — that al Qaeda alone was responsible — is not. Neither is the charge that the now-defeated Spanish government lied when, in the immediate aftermath of the attack, it focused suspicion on ETA, the violent Basque separatist group that tumbles down both sides of the Pyrennees, threatening France as well as Spain. In fact, Jose Maria Aznar's government had good reason to look first to ETA, because it had evidence that ETA had been trying to attack Spanish trains in the months before March 11, and the fact that foreign terrorists were involved in that attack is no proof that ETA wasn't. Which foreign terrorists? Al Qaeda is certainly one possibility. We know there is an active al Qaeda cell in Spain, but it's not as if it has the field all to itself. As real experts like David McCormack and Colleen Gilbert of Frank Gaffney's Center for Security Policy pointed out in the Jerusalem Post on March 15, the Armed Islamic Group, the Salafist Group for Call and Combat, and members of the Syrian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood are also active on Spanish soil. These groups have cooperated with ETA in the past and with al Qaeda too, and the fact that so many of the suspects arrested thus far are from Spain's near neighbor, Morocco, makes Salafist and/or Armed Islamist Group involvement look especially likely. Surprise, surprise, there is also a chest-thumping letter, claiming all the credit for al Qaeda one more time, but another real expert, MEMRI's master translator, Yigal Carmon, says the style it is written in differs from bin Laden's style in significant ways.

Lisa Myers of NBC News provides us with our second example. In an otherwise trenchant March 16 article on the failure of the Clinton administration to go after Osama bin Laden when it could and should have, Myers was not content to credit bin Laden with the horrific second attack on the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. She asserts that he was also responsible for the first attack on the Trade Towers on February 26, 1993 — and thus contributes to the myth of an all-powerful, omnipresent al Qaeda. But this is an extremely dubious claim. The evidence here is not as clear as it should be, because the Clinton administration refused to recognize that attack for what it was — an act of war — and handled it strictly as a law enforcement matter, cutting the CIA and the DIA out of the investigation. As a result, we got a criminal conviction against the terrorist mastermind behind the attack — a man we call "Ramzi Yousef" — without coming any closer than we were before the trial to any real understanding of who this mysterious frequent flyer with multiple names and passports really is. To our official "experts," it's a mystery still. Unofficially, the available evidence — evidence meticulously assembled and expertly analyzed by Laurie Mylroie — indicates that 'Ramzi Passports' was an Iraqi intelligence agent. Recognizing this likelihood interferes with the Left's insistence that Iraq was not a terrorist threat to us until we toppled Saddam Hussein. In fact, it appears Iraq has been a terrorist threat for some time.

Example three brings us to our current troubles in Iraq. The first time I wrote about foreign terrorists invading Iraq with the help of hostile border states like Iran and Syria, State Department spokesmen were still insisting that local Baathist remnants were the only significant threat in Iraq. Subsequent developments have made it increasingly clear that many of the most devastating attacks on our forces, our allies, and the Iraqi people were and are the work of foreign terrorists — but, once again, the automatic assumption has been that if they're foreign, they must be al Qaeda. This is a non-sequitor. Al Qaeda is active in Iraq, but Hezbollah is too and is as least as dangerous because it is a proxy for Iran and Syria, the two states with the most to fear from a free Iraq. The ruling despots in both of those countries are already under threat from their own people: Students and workers have been mounting mass protests all over Iran; fed-up Kurds are fighting back in the Syrian north; and a few brave Arabs and Christians are trying to raise their voices in the rest of Syria and in occupied Lebanon too. Syria's Baathist Alawite tyrants and Iran's hated Khomeini-style mullahs all know in their quaking bones that if we succeed in creating a free Iraq on their very doorstep, their grip on their increasingly restive people will ultimately fail, and they are desperate to prevent that. The bottom line here, as I argued in October, is that we're not likely to succeed in stabilizing Iraq until we face up to the role that Iran, Syria, and Hezbollah are playing, and force them to stop training foreign terrorists and funneling them into Iraq.

In all three cases described above and others besides, al Qaeda is happy to take sole credit for attacks in which it is only one of a number of terrorist actors, as well as for those in which it had no role at all. It makes al Qaeda look supernaturally powerful, making it easier to recruit new jihadis and to intimidate weak-willed governments, and it has no downside, because al Qaeda no longer has an address. Since we successfully drove them from power in Afghanistan, they have only a warren of widely dispersed, hard-to-find holes to hide in, mostly in the wild mountains between Afghanistan and Pakistan, in a few failed African states, and in Iran. Occasional jealousies aside, other terror groups and states are generally happy to see al Qaeda get all the credit, because they do have obvious local addresses and hence greater reason to fear our retaliation. Blaming everything on al Qaeda gives them what is, in effect, a free pass, letting them operate with impunity, hiding in plain sight.

The overall bottom line here is this: Of course we need to kill or capture bin Laden — and we will, sooner or later — but to win the war on terror we need to do much more. We need to demythologize al Qaeda, and then focus clearly and realistically on each of the remaining terror groups and terror states that threaten us. We need to go on the offensive against them, too, mounting an aggressive, unrelenting campaign aimed at bringing them to their knees and empowering native freedom fighters already locked in unequal combat with them. I believe George W. Bush understands that, but there's no denying the fact that politically it's a very tough sell. It's hard enough to unify the wobbly West behind the necessity to fight together against obvious enemies like al Qaeda; it's doubly daunting to garner support, at home and abroad, for the broader war we need to fight. But it must be done. Unless and until we do garner such support, the odds of achieving stability in Iraq and a decisive victory in the overall war on terror are just not good enough.

Despite the difficulty, and the many ways in which the election campaign heightens it, President Bush is moving in the right direction. He's planning to turn up the sanctions screws on Syria this week, and that's a good thing, but it would be even better if he would speak out on Iran, too, expressing our sympathy for the Iranian people's struggle for democracy and condemning the brutal measures the mullahs are using to repress them. Is it too risky to do that, prior to the election? Maybe, if you think the election can be won on the defensive. My guess is that, like the war on terror, it can only be won on the offensive. And an offense that rallies behind people who are already fighting for freedom makes more sense than pressing for democracy in places like Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Jordan where there is, as yet, no real constituency for it.

-- Barbara Lerner is a freelance writer in Chicago.
34 posted on 03/23/2004 3:59:48 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; ...
Osama & Friends

March 23, 2004
National Review Online
Barbara Lerner
35 posted on 03/23/2004 4:01:43 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: faludeh_shirazi
Welcome back.
I think you set a record last time.
Try to last a longer..... ; )
36 posted on 03/23/2004 4:26:49 PM PST by nuconvert ("America will never be intimidated by thugs and assassins." ( President Bush 3-20-04))
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To: faludeh_shirazi
OH WELCOME BACK FALUDEH!!!!! YOU WERE MISSED!!!!! I'm sorry that you were banned for a week, but it IS nice to see you back here now.

Message for the Mods: PLEASE REMEMBER PATIENCE when dealing with those of us who tend to get EXCITED about "breakouts of FREEDOM" around this weary world. Without FREEDOM, life isn't really life, it's just existence, sigh.

37 posted on 03/23/2004 4:41:12 PM PST by Reborn
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To: DoctorZIn

Good One
38 posted on 03/23/2004 5:06:13 PM PST by nuconvert ("America will never be intimidated by thugs and assassins." ( President Bush 3-20-04))
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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”

39 posted on 03/23/2004 10:37:31 PM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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