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Iranian Alert -- April 13, 2004 [EST]-- IRAN LIVE THREAD -- "Americans for Regime Change in Iran"
The Iranian Student Movement Up To The Minute Reports ^ | 4.13.2004 | DoctorZin

Posted on 04/12/2004 9:00:25 PM PDT 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.” 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: adamereli; alikhamenei; alirezanoorizadeh; alsadr; armyofmahdi; ayatollah; cais; cleric; donaldrumsfeld; ereli; gerecht; humanrights; iaea; insurgency; iran; iranianalert; iranquake; iraq; jayshalmahdi; journalist; kazemi; khamenei; khatemi; mohammadkhatemi; moqtadaalsadr; noorizadeh; persecution; politicalprisoners; protests; revolutionaryguard; rueulgerecht; rumsfeld; satellitetelephones; shiite; southasia; southwestasia; studentmovement; studentprotest; terrorism; terrorists; thuriya; wot; zahrakazemi
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Join Us At Today's Iranian Alert Thread – The Most Underreported Story Of The Year!

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

1 posted on 04/12/2004 9:00:29 PM PDT 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 04/12/2004 9:02:11 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Is an Iranian Hand Stirring the Iraqi Pot?

April 12, 2004
Radio Free Europe
Bill Samii

As Iraq undergoes some of its most serious unrest since the demise of Saddam Hussein's regime in April 2003, questions have been asked about the role Iran may be playing in the violence. There is no publicly available substantive evidence of an Iranian role, but an exploration of these questions indicates that actors in the Iranian foreign policy field have the motivation and the means to interfere in Iraqi affairs.

President Hojatoleslam Mohammad Khatami briefly addressed events in Iraq in a 6 April speech, state television and the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) reported, claiming the U.S.-led coalition is misusing the issues of democracy and human rights. "Those who violate human rights exert pressure on other countries in the name of human rights," Khatami said. "Those [foreign troops] who use tanks to crush people of an Iraqi town for staging a demonstration do not have the right to talk about human rights."

Iranian Foreign Minister Kharrazi said on 6 April, "The United States should change its attitude toward the Iraqi nation in line with efforts to settle the ongoing crisis in that country and stop the threats, detention, and massacre of the nation, because this method has proven inefficient," IRNA reported. Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Assefi said on 5 April, "The occupying forces are responsible for the continuation of the unrest in Iraq," state television reported.

Iran, as the self-perceived leader of the Shi'a community, can be expected to make such statements. Its statements, furthermore, are consistent with its continuing hostility to the United States. The focus therefore shifts to Tehran's relationship with Iraqi cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, who the White House and U.S. officials in Iraq assert is behind the current uprising. (Unnamed U.S. intelligence officials said in "The Washington Post" on 8 April that this is a "broad-based uprising that goes well beyond the supporters of one militant Islamic cleric.")

Al-Sadr's role in the current unrest began when the coalition authorities closed his "Al-Hawzah" newspaper in late March for inciting violence. In early April, Iraqi police arrested al-Sadr associate Mustafa al-Yacubi in connection with al-Khoi's murder and announced that a warrant had been issued for al-Sadr's arrest. Al-Sadr responded by announcing, in a 4 April speech reported in the "International Herald Tribune" on 5 April, "There is no use for demonstrations, as your enemy loves to terrify and suppress opinions and despises peoples.... I ask you not to resort to demonstrations because they have become a losing card and we should seek other ways.... Terrorize your enemy, as we cannot remain silent over its violations."

Al-Sadr's leadership credentials initially had more to do with being the son of slain Grand Ayatollah Mohammad Sadeq al-Sadr than with any personal accomplishments. Yet in the space of one year he has gone from relative obscurity to being considered the leader of a significant threat to Iraq's stability. He was a relative unknown until his associates allegedly murdered a cleric named Abd al-Majid al-Khoi in April 2003. Over time he has established a base by providing his supporters some of the social services normally provided by a functioning government. He also has created a militia, the Imam Al-Mahdi Army, that numbers up to 6,000.

Some in Washington believe Iran has a hand in the unrest. U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said on 7 April, "We know the Iranians have been meddling [in Iraq] and it is unhelpful to have neighboring countries meddling in the affairs of Iraq and I think the Iraqi people are not going to want to be dominated by a neighboring country, any neighboring country," RFE/RL reported. "No country wants to be dominated by its neighbors." Yet State Department spokesman Adam Ereli was less definitive on 9 April. "We've seen, generally speaking, reports of suggestions of Iranian involvement, collusion, provocation, coordination, et cetera, et cetera. But I think there's a dearth of hard facts to back these things up," Ereli said, as cited by UPI.

The relationship between Iran and al-Sadr is rather unclear. He went from being a critic of Iran when he emerged on the scene to making a trip to Iran a few months later (see "RFE/RL Iran Report," 9 June 2003). Al-Sadr said in response to a September 2003 question about his position as an extension of Iran's Islamic revolution, "I am the extension of my own reference, that of my father. If the two lines are similar, which is a fact, then our goals are also similar. There is no harm in my being an extension of the Khomeini revolution" (see "RFE/RL Iraq Report," 25 September 2003).

Moreover, an Iraqi cleric based in Iran, Ayatollah Kazem al-Haeri, appointed al-Sadr as his personal representative in April 2003. Sources in the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI) said in October 2003 that they are under pressure from some Iranian officials to recognize al-Haeri as their source of emulation and to declare allegiance to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei (see "RFE/RL Iran Report," 28 April and 13 October 2003).

An Iraqi Governing Council member told the "Al-Hayat" daily on 6 April 2003 that Iran is waging influence through al-Sadr.

Yet Tehran's relationship with other Iraqi Shi'a has deeper roots. SCIRI and Al-Da'wah al-Islamiyah have had relations with Iran since the early 1980s, when they were forced to relocate to Iran after fleeing Ba'ath regime repression. Leaders in these parties were based in Iran, and SCIRI's Badr Corps militia was trained by and fought alongside the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) -- a relationship that reportedly continues. Muddying the waters further is Tehran's early recognition of the Iraqi Governing Council and the frequent trips to Tehran of council officials, whether they are associated with SCIRI, Dawa, the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, or the Iraqi National Congress.

One possible explanation for alleged Iranian actions is the dual nature of the Iranian foreign policy apparatus, in which officials associated with the executive branch and the Foreign Ministry interact with their counterparts in other countries, while officials in the IRGC, the Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS), and the armed forces deal with insurgent groups and terrorists. Not only can these latter three institutions bypass the executive branch and the Supreme National Security Council, but their actions are sometimes at odds with the government's stated policies. An example of the real impact of this foreign policy dichotomy is a 6 April report, in the "Al-Hayat" daily, that the Iranian charge d'affaires in Iraq, Hassan Kazemi Qomi, served in the IRGC in Lebanon. (Before Qomi came to Iraq in December 2003 he was the consul-general in Herat, another place where Iran was involved with activities against U.S. forces; see "RFE/RL Iran Report," 23 February 2004.)

The Iranian executive branch has frequently stated that it wants to see a democratic and unified Iraq with a democratic form of government that is acceptable to all the country's ethnic groups. It wants the United States out of Iraq and away from Iran's borders.

Yet other officials use the "quagmire" metaphor when discussing the U.S. role in Iraq. They don't just want the U.S. to leave the region. They want a humiliated and bloodied American army to give up on Iraq, thereby handing Iran a public relations victory in the battle for Muslim hearts and minds.

Such thinking was expressed by Expediency Council Chairman Ayatollah Ali-Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani in a 9 April Friday prayers sermon. "Americans have a bumpy road ahead of them.... They are really in a quagmire," he said according to state radio. "The day they set foot in Baghdad, I said that they had entered a quagmire and that from then onwards, the policy of extricating themselves from the quagmire had to be implemented."

Another example of such thinking was expressed in the IRGC's 8 April statement as cited by the Iranian Labor News Agency (ILNA): "A fate more horrifying than Vietnam awaits America in the morass of Iraq." An earlier example occurred in Ayatollah Mohammad Emami-Kashani's 5 December 2003 sermon in Tehran, according to state radio. "America is now stranded in Iraq. It is trapped in a quagmire which it created itself," Emami-Kashani said.

In the context of dueling institutions, it is notable that when Muqtada al-Sadr visited Iran he reportedly met only with Expediency Council Chairman Ayatollah Ali-Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani; "Al-Sharq al-Awsat," however, reported on 8 October 2003 that Khatami refused to meet with him. When SCIRI's Abd al-Aziz al-Hakim visited Iran in early October he met with President Khatami as well as many other top officials.

Comprehension of the Iranian foreign policy process is made more difficult by the actions of actors outside governmental and military security institutions. Para-statal foundations are extremely wealthy, act with no government oversight, and pursue actions that have a significant foreign policy impact. For example, the 15th of Khordad Foundation's 1989 offer of a multimillion dollar bounty for British author Salman Rushdie is still valid. Religious institutions can be used to channel money to figures in Iraq, thereby allowing state institutions the opportunity to deny any involvement in the unrest.

Apologists for Iran will ask for proof of an Iranian hand in the current unrest. It is unlikely, however, that any evidence that will satisfy these people will ever be found. Indeed, whatever the extent of Tehran's involvement, it is clear that its direct or indirect agitation has stirred up native tensions. Nevertheless, for the last 25 years Iran has involved itself in a range of regional conflicts, and there is no reason to believe that it will end this involvement when its perceived survival is at stake.
3 posted on 04/12/2004 9:03:13 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Syria, Iran involved in Iraq - Abizaid

Jerusalem Post - By Staff
Apr 12, 2004

Syria and Iran are involved in Iraq, and their involvement is not meant to assist the US-led Coalition there, Gen. John Abizaid, head of U.S. Central Command said Monday.

Speaking to reporters in Washington via video-link from Baghdad, Abizaid said there were signs that Iran's involvement is not designed to assist US efforts in Iraq.

Abizaid made the same claim against Syrian involvement in Iraq.

"We know the Iranians have been meddling, and it's unhelpful to have neighboring countries meddling in the affairs of Iraq," US Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld said last Wednesday.
4 posted on 04/12/2004 9:04:27 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn

By Safa Haeri

LONDON, 12 Apr. (IPS)

"There can be no change in Iran unless the present theocratic-based Constitution of the regime is radically changed into a real democracy", says Mr. Mohammad Mohsen Sazegara, a veteran Iranian political dissident, adding that, "however, no real reform could take place from within the system", referring to the failure of President Mohammad Khatami’s efforts to introduce some reforms, even limited.

Speaking to Iran Press Service in London, where he is going medical check up, the 49 years-old Sazegara, a former Islamist revolutionary who helped the creation of the Revolutionary Guards and a devote supporter of the late Grand Ayatollah Roohollah Khomeini and the regime he initiated says there could be no real democracy without a secular system based on a parliamentary system.

"No democratic regime can take its legitimacy from religion only. However, democracy has become a necessity, not a luxury, for the Iranians. None of the major difficulties we face in the economic, social, cultural and foreign relations fields could be solved without implementing democracy as a fist stone and in turn, this could not be achieved without a fundamental change in the present Constitution", Mr. Sazegara, a journalist sentenced to one year imprisonment argued.

In his view, the regime’s major handicap is both unemployment and a heavy centralised administration that, for the time being, is relieved because of high oil prices.

"The other major issue facing the regime is its foreign policy based on "Palestinisation" in the one hand and antagonism with the United States instead of policy based on national interests", he says.

Here are large excerpts of the hour-long interview.

Iran Press Service – What you say is exactly what the Iranian people has also realised and wishes. How do you see the future of this regime?

Mohammad Mohsen Sazegara – The basic condition for this regime to survive is to change the present theocratic Constitution, the separation of the three powers with total independence of the Judiciary and public media, free political parties, press, unions. Democracy is no corns or tail, religious or atheist. It is what it means and nothing more than that.

IPS – The conservative have won the Majles elections. They also control the Judiciary and in the mean time, the government of Mr. Khatami had never a real voice in major decisions. Two questions in one: Why the conservatives wanted to control the Majles at any cost and how do you see the future?

MMS – Power game. The sixth Majles, no matter its impotence, but on the surface, in speeches from the so-called reformists, the reports and investigations from various committees had some unprecedented achievements that the ruling conservatives could not tolerate….

IPS - …. But when the reformist lawmakers who were rejected by the Council of the Guardians staged a sit-in, the bulk of the people and most particularly the students did not supported their protest movement. In another word, the people sealed the fate of both President Khatami and the reformists. If this is the case, what the reformists would do in the future?

MMS – In the past six years, the reformists were the grey colour between black and white, covering the gap between the people and the Islamic Republic. In case the reformists would succeed, the path to democratisation would be better paved, the process accelerated and generalised.

Now, to answer your second question, the reformers must chose between going to the people or the hegemonists (conservatives). Our women, students, young generations have already made their decision by separating their position from that of the leadership, including the Second Khordad Coalition that supported President Khatami. In my view, the future of the regime depends of a strong opposition that can in turn express clearly the real needs of all sectors of the Iranian people.

IPS – In the absence of any kind of opposition you mention, which force would be able to pretend to such legitimacy?

MMS – First of all this opposition must have a clear program, a flag, that of secularism, joining the international community and freedoms. In my view, those who would raise this flag would emerge in due time.

IPS – To continue survive, the conservative have reached the conclusion that they must talk to the Americans. Is that correct?

MMS – Some says so. Some are afraid of the prospect of an entente between Iranian and American militarists creating an atmosphere like that of 1953 (the year the CIA and the Intelligence Service triggered the revolt against Dr Mohammad Mosadeq, the then nationalist Prime Minister). Some among the monopolists might think of such a scenario in order to survive.

Personally, I think that our era being that of the rule of democracy and human rights has no place for dictatorial regimes. Competitions among international, globalised companies, regional conglomerations on the expenses on national borders, free float of investments, information and news etc. create an insurmountable obstacle for a regime like that of velayate faqih that we have now in Iran, a system that run against all these concepts.

Now, if the present rulers want to change, even by adopting the Chinese model, they must do away with the velayat faqih and theocracy, meaning starting by de-Khomeinisation, they would then face their real power base. This is something they cannot and would not.

IPS – And then how to survive, as they have proven that they are ready for changes?

MMS – The answer depends to their clairvoyance. They still have the occasion to a smooth hand over of the power to an opposition that is ready to let them live in peace. But if they fail to grab this occasion, as they say in Spain, "everything is possible in Toledo!".


5 posted on 04/12/2004 9:05:23 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn

6 posted on 04/12/2004 9:06:39 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn; freedom44; nuconvert; Eala; McGavin999; AdmSmith; Valin; Defender2; Stefania; MLedeen; ..
The US Must Develop a Policy on Iran

April 13, 2004
by Amber Pawlik
Men's Daily News

The history of terrorist attacks against the United States abroad reveals a re-occuring theme: the Islamic regime of Iran that was behind it. It is now known that recent insurgencies in Iraq have been coming from leader al-Sadr, who is sponsored by the Islamic regime of Iran. It is time for the United States to develop a policy regarding Iran: to rid the world of its modern NAZI Germany.

The Islamic regime of Iran is the biggest threat to the civilized world. It poses not just a threat to the United States but could possibly start the next genocide against Jews. The Islamic regime of Iran is developing a nuclear program that could hit Israel, a small area with roughly 5 million Jews – almost equivalent to the number of Jews that Hitler killed.

So as long as this thug regime is around, it will seek to destroy the United States, Israel, and our soldiers in Iraq. This regime does not want a success story in Iraq. A success story in Iraq would mean a death to them, which is why they are launching attacks now on American soldiers. Unless we want to keep sending our soldiers into dangerous areas, with more insurgencies coming up because we are not attacking the root of the problem, it is time to deal with Iran.

There is a very simple and effective solution that the United States can adopt to rid the mullahs in Iran with little cost to us: give unequivocal moral and military support to the rebelling Iranian population.

The Iranian population is ripe for a regime change. The Iraqi population was not. In order for regime change to happen in Iraq, it had to happen by military force. In Iran it does not: the population can overthrow its own government.

Hopefully the work others and myself have done on Iran will enlighten the public to the pro-American nature of the Iranian population. After 9-11, whereas Palestinians came to the streets to cheer on bin Laden, the Iranians came out with candlelight to support the Americans. You can see pictures of this at Helping to arm the Iranian population is not the same as arming bin Laden, which we did to fight the Soviets. In fact, to not use them or turn our backs on the Iranian population would be suicidal.

If the Iranian population can overthrow its own government without US military involvement, it would mean a host of good things. This includes little casualties for us (possible border protection should be provided against insurgencies into Iraq), the inability for the left and Europe to call us “imperialist,” and support from the Iranian population, since they do not favor war in their backyards.

Relying on the Iranian population to overthrow their own regime, however, does not mean we should do nothing at all. The Iranians have fought with great courage for freedom, to have the rest of the world turn their backs on them. Moral and military support from Western world leaders must be given to the Iranian population.

Most who support regime change in Iran have thought that Bush would wait until his re-election to deal with Iran. We must reject that mentality. The United States should develop a policy towards dealing with the Islamic regime in Iran, starting today.

As was taught to us by Madrid on 3-11, America could easily be vulnerable during election time come this next November. Terrorists may see it as a time where they could influence American politics, or they may recognize it as the vulnerable time it is, since no politician wants to utilize military force right before an election. I say we reject that mentality completely. Even if we are attacked in early November, we should begin attacks immediately on whoever did it. This is all the more reason to start taking actions now.

If the Islamic regime of Iran stays in power, the success in Iraq thus far will have been futile, for the Iranian thugs will try to take over this country. If President Bush wants to finish the job in Iraq, he must turn his attention to Iran. If John Kerry is elected president, who said recently he thought al-Sadr was a “legitimate voice,” we can expect tyranny and oppression to loom in the Middle East for years to come, and all efforts towards ridding the world of dictators and terrorists will revert backwards. Action should be taken now.

I’ve wanted to start an organized activist campaign regarding Iran for a while now. The time is right. Here are some things you can do.

Write letters to politicians.

Here are two email addresses to send letters to:

The president’s email is

The vice president’s email is

Since I am a United States’ citizen, I will write to United States’ politicians. However, people throughout the world should write to their politicians too. The threat the Islamic regime of Iran poses is a global one. A global front must be made in retaliation.

Here is a brief list of things you can tell the President and Vice President or your leader:

It is time to rid the world of its modern NAZI Germany.
US Soldiers must be given the support they need, ridding the source of violence against them, which is the Islamic regime of Iran.
More speeches in favor of the Iranian population must be given.
Military support can be and should be provided to the rebelling Iranian population.
The Iranian Islamic regime should have pressure put on it to release its political prisoners.
What is going on in Iran must be clarified in clear, moral terms: the mullahs are evil and the people who desire freedom are good. The Iranian plight generally goes unnoticed and unreported. Support from Western leaders – or celebrities or newspapers or anything – would give the growing rebellions in Iran the moral support they need. The Iranian people are our greatest asset in this, and if we could fuel the fire under them, this would mean little or possibly no casualties of ours.

Write to the media.
The Islamic regime of Iran is more afraid of the people rebelling in Iran being reported in Western media than they are of the actual rebellions. It can be speculated that the mullahs are making threats to Western media about reporting what is going on. The Iranian situation is always either under-reported or never reported accurately by the media – sympathy is always given to the Islamic regime. Recently, Time magazine questioned if the Islamic regime of Iran was funding al-Sadr, which is the equivalent of questioning if Hitler was sponsoring NAZIs. The only way the rebellions of the Iranian people were reported from last July was because thousands of people started sending faxes, emails and letters to the media. Shedding light on the situation may be the best disinfectant possible.

Write letters to the editor.
If you are familiar with the situation in Iran, a simple letter to your newspaper will help shed light on the situation. This is especially important if you are at a university, where political debate is high.

Start a university club.
University clubs in favor of a Free Iran already exist. It is Iranians themselves who start them. But many Iranians hide their identity and refrain from activism, because they still have family in Iran. American college students, who are so yearning to find any given cause, should also start such clubs.

People often times wonder why I’ve poured so much time into the Iranian cause. Besides the first obvious reason, that the Islamic regime poses a direct threat to the United States, it is really quite simple. I live in a country where I can speak freely. For me to sit idly by, and not write about it, when at best I risk not my life or friends or even my job but at worst - unpopularity, would be the most cowardly thing I can think of.

We must develop a policy regarding Iran, which should revolve around unequivocal moral support given to the people, not the mullahs, of Iran.

Amber Pawlik
7 posted on 04/12/2004 10:19:36 PM PDT by F14 Pilot (John Fedayeen Kerry - the Mullahs' regime candidate)
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To: All
THIS IS THE BIGGEST JOKE/LIE OF THE YEAR, Couldn't help laughing when I was reading that -- Pilot

The former Iranian President, Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, has chided Islamic countries for remaining indifferent to his claim the US spending one billion dollars per week to spread corruption in Iraq, IRIB website reported.

"America today spends one billion dollars each week to block the way of God and spread corruption and insecurity in Iraq and the region, but those who must defend Islam fail (to address the issue)," he said Monday at a nationwide charity forum.

"Against such a heavy spending by America, the Islamic states are looking at regional developments with indifference," said Rafsanjani, who heads the arbitrative Expediency Council.
8 posted on 04/12/2004 11:14:12 PM PDT by F14 Pilot (John Fedayeen Kerry - the Mullahs' regime candidate)
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To: F14 Pilot
What regional developments would Iran be talking about? Taking over Iraq perhaps.

Got to close down for the night.
9 posted on 04/12/2004 11:55:29 PM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach (The terrorists and their supporters declared war on the United States - and war is what they got!!!!)
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To: DoctorZIn
U.N. nuclear inspectors arrive to check up on Iran

By Ali Akbar Dareini
The Associated Press
Via - The Salt Lake Tribune
Apr 13th, 04

TEHRAN, Iran -- Five U.N. nuclear inspectors arrived Monday to try to confirm whether Iran has stopped suspicious nuclear activities -- including the building of centrifuges for uranium enrichment.
Mohammad Saeedi, a top Iranian nuclear official, said the experts from the U.N.'s International Atomic Energy Agency arrived for a series of meetings and inspections.
The visit coincides with a call by Iranian radicals that their government should defy the U.N. nuclear agency, expel U.N. inspectors and resume uranium enrichment. The Iranian government, though, appears determined to stick to a more moderate approach in hopes of avoiding international isolation.
The United States and other nations accuse Iran of having a covert nuclear weapons program and are pushing the United Nations to impose sanctions. Tehran insists its nuclear activities are peaceful and for the purpose of generating electricity.
Saeedi said that to win "greater international trust," Iran stopped building and assembling centrifuges Friday, as it promised during a one-day visit last week by IAEA chief Mohamed ElBaradei.
It was the second such promise: Iran said March 29 that it had already stopped building centrifuges for uranium enrichment.
ElBaradei had welcomed the centrifuge announcement and said the inspectors who arrived Monday would try to verify that all uranium enrichment activities have stopped.
Later Monday, ElBaradei arrived in his native Egypt from Vienna for a three-day visit, during which he is expected to discuss the issue of weapons of mass destruction in the Middle East with Arab League Secretary-General Amr Moussa and Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Maher.

In Cairo, ElBaradei said Iran has been "slow" to cooperate with the IAEA, but that he hoped following his visit to Tehran that negotiations over Iran's nuclear program would improve.

During ElBaradei's visit, Iran also committed to meeting deadlines on disclosing the source of traces of weapons-grade uranium found here and answering questions on its recently discovered program to make advanced P-2 centrifuges to enrich uranium, possibly to weapons grade.
Iranian hard-liners have accused ElBaradei of being "America's agent" and say that by giving in to the IAEA, Iran is giving in to U.S. demands to surrender nuclear technology.
"The only logical option is to resume uranium enrichment, expel IAEA inspectors and withdraw from [the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty] if the [IAEA] continues to illegally deny Iran its rights," hard-liner Hossein Shariatmadari wrote in an editorial last week in his newspaper, Kayhan.
Shariatmadari is close to Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has the final say on all state matters.
10 posted on 04/13/2004 1:21:07 AM PDT by F14 Pilot (John ''Fedayeen" sKerry - the Mullahs' regime candidate)
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To: F14 Pilot
11 posted on 04/13/2004 3:51:41 AM PDT by Stefania
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To: Stefania


Well, things are going on well.i have the support of some important people both here and outside italy.

Having little experience in these things (i said little not "no experience" ), some friends help me and i can count on good people .

Well, i think i may shortly write something on this project..

First steps which should be taken..

1) Build a a website in Italian first of all. The websites would have some important sections-

a)Foreign Policy (Iran,Cuba,China,North Africa,Africa at whole,Middle East,US ,European Union,UN,Russia,Chechenya,etc..)

b)Economic Policy(Free-markets,Globalization,Genetically Modified Food,etc.. )

c)Italian Politics (arguing in favor of a true free market economy and urge an end to statalist-bureaucratic economic policies; reform of the retirement;and so on..)

There might be a section all dedicated to the neocons' thought.

Articles and Editorials from the major international and italian newspapers would cover every one of the topics.

You,Michael Ledeen plus other people may write your opinions and help.

For a more complete website, a Forum should also be created.

Once the Italian Website is almost built, it would be translated in English and,if possible, in French,Parsi and Arabic.

We count to do a good job and spread it all over here and abroad.

Note: The project won't be only virtual..Not at all.

To begin with , a good website is a first step.

Then, we will think to organize the Association with people which have joined us .

For exemple. there might be sit-in in various cities,meetings,petitions,etc..

please tell me what you think and i count on you to give me the best advises...

You are wiser than me..

It'd be good to spread the neocons' point of view in a country ,Italy, where the European Union controls the media and dictates the foreign policy.

12 posted on 04/13/2004 3:59:42 AM PDT by Stefania
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To: DoctorZIn
(Posting only here because I don't think it's of general FR interest, though relevant to this thread:)

Iran slates second round of parliamentary elections for May 7

TEHRAN (AFP) - The second round of Iran's parliamentary elections is scheduled to be held on May 7, state media announced, with the vote expected to add to an already overwhelming majority of hardliners in the new assembly.

In the first round of voting on February 20, a likely coalition of religious conservatives, hardliners and centrists swept around 155 of the 289 seats up for grabs.

Reformists loyal to President Mohammad Khatami (news - web sites), who had held a crushing majority in the Majlis since 2000, were left with around 40 seats. That was hardly surprising given that most of their candidates were barred from standing by a powerful political vetting body run by conservatives.

Of the approximately 65 seats going to a second round -- required when no single candidate wins more than 25 percent of votes cast -- reformists can only contest around 17 of them, according to unofficial estimates.

The hardline Guardians Council, the body that drew up the candidate blacklist and approves the dates on which elections can be held, did not specify the exact number of seats going into a second round.

Reports only said that in addition to the 60 seats where there was no clear winner on February 20, the results from several more constituencies had been invalidated by the body and would go up again on May 7.

In the light of the disqualifications, voter turnout became a key focus point of the polls, with the clerical regime waging an all-out media campaign to bring out the voters and angered reformists hoping for a mass boycott to pressure the regime.

In the end, turnout was put at 50.57 percent, a record low for a major election in the 25-year history of the Islamic republic but still far above some predictions of a mass boycott.

13 posted on 04/13/2004 8:36:23 AM PDT by Eala (Sacrificing tagline fame for... TRAD ANGLICAN RESOURCE PAGE:
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To: DoctorZIn
Iraqi Spring Offensive Hijacked by Iran Forces Reshuffle of US Middle East Cards

DEBKAFile - Special Report
Apr 13, 2004

US president George W. Bush’s appointment book for the remainder of April reflects a Middle East without Iraq. Two days after seeing Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak in Crawford on Monday, April 12, he meets Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon in Washington and Abdullah King of Jordan on Friday, April 21.

No Iraqi leader joins the procession of Middle East visitors because no suitable prime minister for the new federal republic of Iraq is so far visible. Although Bush would have preferred to devote the week to the crisis besetting Iraq, he cannot cancel visits that were scheduled before the April 3 outbreak of Iraq hostilities. This seems to indicate a lack of intelligence forewarning. The White House must have been warned in general terms that a Sunni-Shiite spring offensive was in the offing – but without a date and word of the tactical coordination forged between the radical Shiite Moqtada Sadr’s Mehdi Army militia and the Al Farouk Battalions, which is made up mainly of crack troops of Saddam’s old Special Republican Guards plus some al Qaeda elements.

President Bush will therefore be too preoccupied with the more pressing Iraq crisis to give his fully attention to the problems of Egypt, Israel and Jordan, however important. He will prefer to quiz his guests closely on the knowledge and evaluations of their intelligence services on Iraq.

For this reason, DEBKAfile’s Washington sources report, Bush is looking forward most of all to a visitor from outside the Middle East, British premier Tony Blair. Their lunch date on Friday, April 16, will in fact be a counsel of war. The two will chart the next political and military moves for Iraq as well as conferring on other Middle East issues. Mubarak, Sharon and King Abdullah know this as well as anyone. Therefore, all three tried to impress the British leader with their views in advance of his conference with Bush.

Alive to European and British sensitivities, President Bush ordered US commanders to slow down their offensives in Iraq over the weekend and so stem Iraqi civilian bloodshed. He knows Blair needs time to prepare domestic opinion for the sudden rise in Iraqi civilian deaths to 800 – 600 in Fallujah alone – in the space of one week’s combat, and more than 2,000 injured.

The role Iran has played in this flare-up will no doubt figure large in the Bush-Blair parley. The president left much of the handling of the Iran issue in British hands when earlier this year he accepted Blair’s offer of a European front for handling this chestnut. Blair proposed a concerted European effort to check Iran’s advance towards nuclear weapons and halt its uranium enrichment, while at the same time laying the groundwork for a Washington-Tehran diplomatic accommodation over Iraq. However, British foreign secretary Jack Straw, who was charged with the maneuver, failed completely. Iran refused to give way on its nuclear program even though the European Union suspended a trade accord that Tehran badly wants. Instead, it marched forward defiantly in three spheres:

1. The Isfahan centrifuge plant was fully assembled and began operating in breach of a solemn Iranian undertaking to the EU and the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna.

2. Work was accelerated on the heavy water reactor in Arak, 200 km southwest of Tehran, where building begins in June. This reactor will produce enough plutonium to make one nuclear weapon per year. It will enable Iran to make up the fuel shortfall created by Russian president Vladimir Putin’s promise to Bush to withhold 8000 fuel rods from the big Bushehr reactor. Bushehr is now preparing to get its fuel from Arak.

3. Through its agents, Revolutionary Guards officers and Hizballah cells in Iraq, Tehran propelled the turbulent young Shiite cleric into staging an uprising against the US-led coalition in the Shiite centers of Baghdad and southern Iraq. At the same time, Iran-based al Qaeda operatives who move in and out of Iraq through the Iranian and Syrian borders were sent to broker tactical links between Sadr’s militia and the Sunni insurgents in Falluja and Ar Ramadi. Once the flame was kindled and Sunni and radical Shiite insurgents engaged in hostilities in the first week of April, Tehran, according to DEBKAfile’s sources, told its agents to break away and maintain a low profile lest Washington be provoked into dealing out punishment.

That was how the Iraqi spring offensive evolved into an Iranian assault, turning US Middle East political and military strategies upside down.

This is the disarray greeting the Middle East visitors to Washington. It is the scene into which Sharon hopes to fit his plan for unilateral disengagement from the Palestinians and closure of Gaza Strip settlements.

For the time being, the prime minister is far from sure he can sell his scheme at home. Monday night, April 12, before emplaning for Washington, he stood up in Maale Adumim, a West Bank Jewish town just outside Jerusalem, and vowed to hang onto the six large urban blocs Israel has built in the territory over nearly 40 years: Ariel, Givat Zeev, Gush Etzion, Kiryat Arba and the revived Jewish Quarter of Hebron, as well as Maale Adumim. His vow did not impress. Since he stated his determination to remove Gaza Strip settlements, Sharon’s credibility with his own following has plummeted. At least one member of his cabinet sees in the latest vow an attempt to swing the Likud opposition round to his plan for the April 29 party poll rather than demonstrating a resolute posture for Washington’s benefit.

In any case, DEBKAfile’s Washington sources report, he is unlikely to bring much cheer home from his talks with Bush. Quite the reverse:

1. He is the first Israeli leader to go into a meeting with a US president without prior consultation or even knowledge of the US statement on their talks. His senor aides spent days in Washington trying for a peek at the text, to no avail. The purported US concessions flooding the media on the Palestinian refugees, the security barrier and the funding of grand Negev development schemes, have been drummed up by the prime minister’s office spin machine or simply conjecture.

2. The White House has not budged an inch from its original position that challenges Sharon to evacuate the Gaza Strip, if Israel so decides, on its own, without making claims on the United States. Nothing is being offered in exchange for this move.

3. The prime minister’s feelers to attract European support for his disengagement initiative have met with a cool response except for a flicker of interest in London. His overture had one result which he certainly did not seek. British interest in a security role in Palestinian areas, though stalled and short of attracting interest in Europe, opened a door for the Americans to walk through, out of reluctance to let the British run with this ball. Washington has accordingly resumed direct contacts with the Palestinian Authority. Yasser Arafat’s minister of information, Nabil Shaat, is invited to Washington next week to meet secretary of state Colin Powell, when only last year no Bush administration official was willing to meet any Palestinian minister.

4. The aggressiveness with which Sharon’s aides lobbied for his plan antagonized senior administration officials and even turned US ambassador to Israel Dan Kurtzer against it.

DEBKAfile’s exclusive sources reveal that, in view of his low expectations from his talks with Bush, Sharon’s advisers went in search of a breakthrough to tilt the Likud poll in favor of his plan. He asked AIPAC ex-president Steve Grossman to approach Democratic candidate John Kerry’s staff and ask him to follow the Bush communiqué at the end of their Wednesday talks with a separate statement of endorsement. Sharon then planned to report to Likud members that his disengagement plan had won bipartisan backing in the United States and was safe even if the Democratic candidate carried the November election.

Grossman has meanwhile heard nothing from Kerry’s staff. Our Washington sources strongly doubt that either of the two US presidential candidates, who are gearing up for the toughest stage of their race, have any interest in feigning assent on an issue on which they are as deeply divided as the Middle East conflict. Kerry can hardly grant Sharon a promise of support for an unknown quantity i.e. Wednesday’s presidential statement.
14 posted on 04/13/2004 8:52:54 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
'Iranians have been meddling' in Iraq

National Post - By Peter Goodspeed
Apr 13, 2004

Suspicion grows that Hezbollah is behind Shiite insurgency

There is a growing chorus of claims that Iran's Revolutionary Guards and Hezbollah, the Iranian-backed Lebanese terrorist group, are secretly supporting and directing Shiite guerrilla forces attacking the U.S.-led coalition in Iraq.

The Iranian hard-liners are bent on creating a new Islamic Republic in Iraq, while trying to prevent any future U.S. targeting of Iran as a charter member of the "Axis of Evil." This includes pouring secret agents, arms and tens of millions of dollars a month into Iraq to bolster rebellious Shiite militias.

Iranian intelligence officials are said to have funnelled millions in aid and arms to outlawed Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, allowing him to develop his personal militia, the Mahdi Army.

In addition, thousands of Iranian agents have infiltrated Iraq disguised as pilgrims.

Operating from a network of up to 2,000 safe houses across southern Iraq, they have recruited Iraqi youths who are sent to Iran for training at secret military camps run by the Revolutionary Guards.

In the meantime, members of Iran's al-Quds Army are providing some of the backbone for Shiite militia groups that suddenly turned on U.S. troops last week in a series of carefully co-ordinated attacks.

"The Islamic Republic's security forces simultaneously fund and direct militias to harass Iraqi democrats and kill American soldiers," said Michael Rubin, a fellow at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, who just returned from eight months in Iraq.

"Mr. al-Sadr's constituency [the poor and dispossessed] alone cannot fund his activities," Mr. Rubin said.

"His few religious endowments produce little income. Much of Mr. al-Sadr's financial support is channelled through Ayatollah Kazem al-Haeri, a resident of the Iranian holy city of Qum, who enjoys the close confidence of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran's Supreme Leader, who maintains slush funds for which he is accountable to neither parliament nor [Iran's] president."

Officially, Tehran has repeatedly expressed its readiness to participate in rebuilding Iraq.

But just as frequently, U.S. officials have accused it of interfering in Iraq's affairs.

While there is no single "smoking gun" to back up the claims, U.S. officials, intelligence agents, academics and diplomats insist last week's "Iraqi intifada" was not so much a spontaneous, indigenous revolt against the U.S.-led occupation as it was a strategically timed, Iranian-backed demonstration of Shiite power.

"We know the Iranians have been meddling, and it's unhelpful to have neighbouring countries meddling in the affairs of Iraq," Donald Rumsfeld, the U.S. Defence Secretary, told a news conference in Washington last week at the height of the fighting in Iraq.

Weeks earlier, while testifying before Congress, George Tenet, director of the Central Intelligence Agency, also warned that Iran is trying to influence events in Iraq.

"The social and political interplay is further complicated by Iran, especially in the south, where Tehran pursues its own interests and hopes to maximize its influence among Iraqi Shia," he said.

As Mr. al-Sadr called on his followers to "terrorize" U.S. troops in Iraq last week, he further fed claims of Iranian involvement in the bloodshed by boasting, "I am the striking arm for Hezbollah and Hamas in Iraq."

Both terrorist groups are backed and bankrolled by Tehran.

The Hezbollah link is even more explicit in Mr. al-Sadr's case. Hezbollah leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah studied with Mr. al-Sadr's father in Najaf in 1976, before returning to Lebanon and joining the Amal Shiite militia, which was founded by one of Mr. al-Sadr's uncles.

U.S. intelligence officials have been warning for months that Hezbollah has become increasingly active in Iraq since the fall of Saddam Hussein.

The terrorist organization operates a string of new "charities" in the country and its al-Manar satellite television network regularly publicizes announcements from Mr. al-Sadr's militia.

The recent rash of kidnappings of foreigners working in Iraq is also eerily reminiscent of Hezbollah's kidnapping of foreigners in Beirut during Lebanon's civil war.

Mr. al-Sadr talks openly of creating an Iranian-style Islamic Republic in Iraq, something that appeals to Iranian hard-liners who are desperate to prevent the emergence of a democratic, secular state next door.

Having waged a vicious political campaign in Iran to turn back demands for political reform, the ruling mullahs will feel threatened by any attempt to establish a genuine pluralist democracy in Iraq.

Last June, Mr. al-Sadr travelled to Tehran, where he had lived in exile after Saddam Hussein's regime assassinated his father and two elder brothers. While there, he met Iran's influential former president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani.

Yesterday, speaking to a charity forum in Tehran, Mr. Rafsanjani complained Muslim states were not doing enough to counter U.S. influences in Iraq.

"America today spends $1-billion a week to block the way of God and spread corruption and insecurity in Iraq and the region. But those who must defend Islam fail [to address the issue]," he said.

Last Friday, during prayers at a mosque in Tehran, Mr. Rafsanjani hailed Shiite Muslim militiamen fighting U.S. troops in Iraq, especially members of the Mahdi Army, as "enthusiastic, heroic young people."

In almost the same breath he denied any Iranian interest in fomenting trouble.

"Iran does not wish to get involved in acts of adventurism," he said in a speech televised nationally in Iran. "We do not intend to become involved in clashes. We do not intend to interfere. We helped in the case of Afghanistan; we helped in the case of Iraq and we are still helping in security and other issues, but America has become vulnerable."

Alireza Nourizadeh, head of the Centre for Arab-Iranian Studies in London, said the power struggle in Iran between religious conservatives and reformers may see different segments of the government once again opposing elements of Iraqi Shiites.

The Revolutionary Guard and intelligence units loyal to spiritual leader Ayatollah Khamenei are backing Mr. al-Sadr.

But Mohammad Khatemi, Iran's President, supports the more moderate Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq and its military wing, the Badr Corps. Both organizations operated from Tehran during Saddam's reign, but they do not support calls for creating a theocratic state and are co-operating with U.S. forces by serving on the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq.

"There are different factions with their own agendas," Mr. Nourizadeh said.

"The so-called conservatives don't want to see a secular state in Iraq. The reformers, of course, want the Iraqi experience to end with success because they believe if there is a democratic government in Iraq at the end of the day, it is going to help their status in Iran. It's going to help them to have more influence in their own power struggle."
15 posted on 04/13/2004 8:55:32 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: Eala
Thanks for posting!
16 posted on 04/13/2004 8:55:36 AM PDT by F14 Pilot (John ''Fedayeen" sKerry - the Mullahs' regime candidate)
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To: DoctorZIn
Tehran Denies Asylum Reports

April 13, 2004
Alba Waba

An aide of Shiite leader Moqtada Sadr was detained by occupation forces in Iraq, according to reports Tuesday. Hazem al-Araj was reportedly arrested by US soldiers in Baghdad, the reports said.

The troops arrested al-Araj as he attended a meeting of tribal leaders at a hotel Tuesday. He was detained as he entered the conference hall at the Palestine Hotel. His bodyguards reportedly tried to prevent the arrest, but stepped aside when confronted by the soldiers.

The troops took him to the neighboring Sheraton Hotel.

Meanwhile, Iran's Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi on Monday in Tehran dismissed as "baseless and untrue" several foreign media reports that said Moqtada Sadr was seeking asylum in Iran.

A report released by the Foreign Ministry media department, and cited by IRNA news agency, quoted Asefi as stressing Iran does not meddle with Iraq`s internal affairs.

"Spreading such speculations is a clear act of mischief and diversion of the public opinion from the ruthless genocide of the innocent Iraqi people," he added.
17 posted on 04/13/2004 8:56:39 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Holy War in Europe

April 13, 2004
American Enterprise Institute
Reuel Marc Gerecht

At an alarmingly increasing frequency, westernized Muslims and converted Christians in Western Europe are joining radical Islamic organizations to wage jihad against the United States and its allies.

These young Muslim males funnel continental anti-Americanism and the alienation of centuries-old Islamic struggle against the Christian West into full-fledged rage that threatens to divide Western allies who together withstood the advance of the Islamic empires during the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries.

On August 26, 1995, a militant Islamic group led by a twenty-four-year-old French Muslim named Khaled Kelkal attempted to blow one of France's high-speed trains off its rails. Luckily, the bomb's detonator, which used an ordinary twelve-volt battery, failed. Later that fall, other bombs would go off in France: two in double-decked metro rail cars in suburban Paris, one in a trash can along the very bourgeois Avenue de Friedland, another in a Parisian open-air market, and one more in a provincial Jewish school. In all there were nine attacks in three months, which killed ten people and wounded 114.

The bombings in 1995 provoked a widespread awareness for the first time in France that the country had a radical-Muslim problem, which was increasingly homegrown and not imported. Kelkal moved to France from Algeria when he was one month old; not known for being religious in his troubled youth, he became an Islamic militant in a French jail, as have hundreds of highly westernized French Muslims. Many more thoroughly secularized French Muslims, who did not have crime-filled youths, have become Islamic radicals, culturally at war with the society that made them. Zacarias Moussaoui, the "twentieth hijacker" of 9/11, is the most notorious example of a religious Frenchman who became intoxicated with the holy-war ideology preached in many radical mosques throughout Western Europe.

European-Grown Jihad

This phenomenon of highly westernized Muslims and converted Christians becoming radicalized believers has happened throughout Western Europe. Relatively few Turks have joined radical Islamic organizations allied with Osama bin Laden's al Qaeda, even though Turkish fundamentalists are numerous and often hardcore. At home and abroad, they are perhaps more numerous and better organized than are fundamentalists of any other nationality. But the Turks who have been arrested for association with al Qaeda usually share one bond: they were either born or raised in Germany and are culturally more German than they are Turkish Muslim. These young men are part of what the Iranian-French scholar Farhad Khosrokhavar has called the néo-umma guerrière--"the new holy-war community of believers" that recognizes neither national nor ethnic identity nor traditional Islamic values. Their Islam is "a new type of Nietzscheanism" where suicide and murder become sacred acts of an elite, self-made race of believers who want to bring on a purifying apocalypse.

A small cadre of European scholars, mirrored by a small group of European internal-security and intelligence officials, have followed the growth of Islamic radicalism in Europe for nearly twenty years. They know, even if European politicians do not, that Europe's most fearsome Muslim true believers are not products of the Israeli-Palestinian confrontation, or the First Gulf War, or the American troop presence in Saudi Arabia after 1990, or the Algerian civil war, or the Bosnian war, or the strife in Chechnya, or the Hindu pillaging of mosques, or the war in Afghanistan, or the second American war against Saddam Hussein, or the globalization of American culture. These events are banners that men who are already converted to jihad wave as they march to give battle. The holy warriors in Europe do not want to see peace in Palestine any more than Osama bin Laden or Iran's clerical guide Ali Khamenei wants to see Israelis and Palestinians solve their problems in two separate, peacefully coexisting states or Hamas's spiritual chief Ahmad Yassin wanted to. They do not care about Israeli settlements.

Europe's jihadists are born from their imperfect assimilation into Western European societies, from the particular alienation that young Muslim males experience in Europe's post-Christian, devoutly secular societies. The phenomenon is vastly more common among Arabs than among African or Asian Muslims. The reasons why these young, predominantly Arab males are drawn to the most militant expressions of Islam are complex and always personal. But their journey--which they usually begin as highly westernized, modern-educated youths of little Islamic faith and end as practitioners of bin Ladenism--is a thoroughly European experience.

The jihadists of Europe have drunk deeply from the virulently anti-American left-wing currents of continental thought and mixed it with the Islamic emotions of 1,400 years of competition with the Christian West. It is a Molotov cocktail of the third-world socialist Frantz Fanon and the Muslim Brother Sayyid Qutb. Muslims elsewhere have gone through similar conversions--the United States, too, has had its Muslim jihadists and will, no doubt, produce more. And the globalization of this virulent strain of fundamentalist, usually Saudi-financed, Islam is real and probably getting worse. But the modern European experience seems much more likely to produce violent young Muslims than the American one. Europe may be competitive with the worst breeding grounds in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and Pakistan.

For Americans, after 9/11, this is obviously not just of academic interest. For the future of al Qaeda--if al Qaeda is to have a future where killing Americans en masse remains its transcendent raison d'être--it is in Western Europe. September 11 could not have happened without a European base of operations.

Though the State Department was not particularly discriminating in issuing visas to Saudis before 9/11, it does a much better job now. The security review of visas granted to Middle Eastern men will only become more stringent with time, doing enormous injustice to the innocent and greatly complicating the operational lives of the guilty. Western European travel documents--which still allow easy access to the United States--are essential for al Qaeda and its allied organizations. But obtaining travel-worthy false European passports for non-state-supported terrorist organizations is becoming harder and harder (this is particularly true since the European Union forced the Belgians to implement better control of their passports, which had been routinely "disappearing" in large numbers). Thus, Islamic holy-warrior terrorist organizations need European Muslims who can lawfully obtain Western European passports.

Al Qaeda knew this a long time ago, which is why the recruitment of Muslims who could travel and operate in the West was a high priority. If al Qaeda or allied holy-warrior organizations cannot operationally enlist and train American Muslims to strike within the United States--and the evidence before and after 9/11 suggests that al Qaeda has done a poor job of finding American Muslims who need to kill non-Muslim Americans to express their love of God--then they must enlist European Muslims or risk compromising the most important element in their recruitment call to holy war. French-born holy warriors could perhaps spiritually survive bombing France, but it is not the same as attacking the United States. America is the cutting edge of Western civilization--not France--and modern Muslim holy warriors want ideally to terrify and humble their enemy's advance guard, not the more lightly armed, less threatening troops behind.

Effects of the Bombings in Spain

Which brings us to Spain. It is possible that if the Spanish withdraw from Iraq as incoming Prime Minister José Luis Zapatero promises to do, they might save themselves from further jihadist attack. It has been a long time since Spain was the preeminent Christian foe of the Muslim world. Unlike France, which is still a cultural force in North Africa (even if, increasingly, it is only a French translation service for American civilization), Spain is irrelevant to the dreams, aspirations, and hatreds of Arabs. France has a Muslim population now deeply and permanently anchored in its national psyche and daily life. Spain does not. And as much as some Muslim denizens of Spain may hate their non-Muslim neighbors, it is a little hard to envision even the most historically sensitive Spanish Muslim holy warrior bombing Madrid repeatedly because of the medieval loss of "Andalusia" to the Catholic princes of Castille and counts of Barcelona. Spain could probably walk away from the United States, pillory America as loudly as possible (anti-Americanism in Spain runs deep and is historically much more heartfelt than in France), emphasize the glories of Muslim Spain and sincerely regret its fall, and not get bombed anymore.

The bombings in Spain could easily produce a Europe-wide temptation to duck: while quietly assisting America in its counterterrorist efforts (the French have been superb allies in this regard since 9/11), they publicly would take as much distance as possible from the United States and ratchet up the "pro-Muslim," "pro-Arab" propaganda. This approach would naturally blend into Western Europe's current official analysis of the Israeli-Palestinian confrontation as the crux of all the bad blood between the Muslim world and the West. It could dovetail nicely with the developing Democratic Party campaign argument depicting Iraq as a mistake, as a digression from the war on terror that has made counterterrorism more difficult. Muslim holy warriors might still try to bomb American embassies or businesses in Europe, which of course could victimize numerous Europeans, but that would be better than having European passenger trains blown off their rails or Alpine highway tunnels firebombed.

President Bush has said that we, the West, are all in this together. But this simply is not true. The néo-umma guerrière does not really want to strike Spain, Belgium, Holland, Luxembourg, Portugal, Italy, Austria, Germany, Poland, or even France as much as it wants to bomb the United States. It would be a delicious irony if small bands of Muslim holy warriors in the twenty-first century accomplished the opposite of what the Ottomans, the most powerful of Islam's empires, achieved in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. The latter helped bring the West together; the former may help tear it apart.

If a Western split does not occur, then we will probably have the French to thank. They know that Zacarias Moussaoui was once upon a time a good Frenchman. They know that more Khaled Kelkals are being born in the banlieues. They know that even the most dedicated Muslim holy warriors might sometimes have to settle for attacking the second best. But then again, Paris hated losing on Iraq. Many in the French elite--most prominently, the foreign minister, Dominique de Villepin--want the democratic experiment in Iraq to fail. With the American loss of Spain and the waffling in Poland, the French sense victory in Europe. It will be interesting to see whether France's envy of American hegemony trumps its own experience and fear of Muslim holy warriors trying to blow their way into heaven.

Reuel Marc Gerecht is a resident fellow at AEI.
18 posted on 04/13/2004 8:57:33 AM PDT 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; ...
Holy War in Europe

April 13, 2004
American Enterprise Institute
Reuel Marc Gerecht
19 posted on 04/13/2004 8:59:02 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: DoctorZIn
Time for Regime Change in Iran

April 13, 2004
Intellectual Conservative
Hedayat Mostowfi

The road map to democracy in Iraq passes through Tehran and not the other way around...After two decades of pursing the policy of critical dialogue, the international community has exhausted all diplomatic channels to deal with the Islamic Republic of Iran.

The road map to democracy in Iraq passes through Tehran and not the other way around.

After two decades of pursing the policy of critical dialogue, the international community has exhausted all diplomatic channels to deal with the Islamic Republic of Iran. The time has come to make a strategic decision about the Iranian regime. Given that any hope of democratic change in Iran within the regime itself turned out to be a mirage, picking business over human rights can no longer be justified. Engaging Tehran has only prolonged the mullahs’ grip on power.

The Iranians’ boycott of the parliamentary election farce last February made it palpably clear that the clerics lack any legitimacy at home. As the leading state sponsor of terrorism, the prospects of a nuclear armed regime should sound the alarm bells in Western capitals.

International Atomic Energy Agency inspectors in Iran recently discovered a blueprint of a much more sophisticated centrifuge for uranium enrichment. They have also found traces of plutonium isotope, which is used in making nuclear weapons.

The Los Angeles Times on March 27, 2004, reported that "Iran set up a committee late last year to coordinate the concealment efforts after international inspectors uncovered evidence that the Islamic Republic had tried to hide aspects of its nuclear program, including secret research on advanced centrifuges that can produce weapons-grade uranium, according to the diplomats….. The committee's most pressing tasks include trying to hide nuclear evidence at nearly 300 locations around the country."

According to the Iranian opposition, 2005 is the year that Iran will have enough material to make a nuclear weapon. The Iranian opposition was responsible for disclosing Iran's uranium enrichment facilities in Natanz for the first time. Ironically, were it not for the revelations of this group about Tehran’s extensive secret nuclear program, the world would not have known what it knows today about the advanced nuclear weapons program in that country.

Each year, Tehran funnels millions of dollars to Islamic fundamentalist groups who simply murder civilians and innocent people.

The U.S appointed civil administrator of Iraq, Ambassador Paul Bremer, has expressed his grave concerns about Iran's interference in Iraq. In a letter to Secretary of State Colin Powell and National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, Senator Norm Coleman (R-MN) expressed his deep concerns about the Iranian interference in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Iran’s mullahs are bent on preventing a stable and democratic Iraq from taking shape. In the aftermath of the war in Iraq, Tehran has dispatched thousands of its well-trained agents to that country to undermine the efforts of the coalition forces to restore calm and security in Iraq.

With the heavy US military presence in the west and the east, Tehran is feeling the pressure. The State Department, a longtime proponent of conciliation with Tehran, has failed to use that presence as leverage and get tough on Iran. In many ways, it has been co-opted by the ever-shrewd Europeans, who only look after their short-term business interests.

In the run-up to the Iranian parliamentary elections, the United State Senate passed a resolution drafted by Senator Sam Brownback and his colleagues -- Senators Ron Wyden, Norm Coleman, Evan Bayh, Jon Kyl, Mary Landreiu -- condemning the charade and endorsing a democratic referendum in Iran. In his message, Senator Brownback added: "By their defiance and despite a tremendous price so far, the Iranian people have rejected hollow promises of reform. Their message to us is that Iran's ruling theocracy can not be reformed from within and that instead of engaging Iran's so-called moderates or any other faction, we must engage the Iranian people and their democratic opposition by fully supporting the call for an internationally monitored referendum for democratic change to determine the fate of the fundamentalist regime in Iran. There is hope for internal change by relying on the organized opposition, where there was none in Iraq or Afghanistan."

Some 750 parliament deputies from nearly a dozen countries in Europe have also backed the call for a United Nations-supervised regime change referendum.

Certainly, as much as a free, democratic and secular government in Iran would discourage the fundamentalist elements in Iraq, it would inspire the democratic forces in that country. The road map to democracy in Iraq passes through Tehran and not the other way around. The U.S. could help its own cause by supporting the democratic opposition to Tehran and the call for a referendum in Iran.

Hedayat Mostowfi is the Executive Director for nationwide Committee in Support of Referendum in Iran.
20 posted on 04/13/2004 9:00:09 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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