Skip to comments.Iranian Alert -- May 15, 2004 [EST]-- IRAN LIVE THREAD -- "Americans for Regime Change in Iran"
Posted on 05/14/2004 11:55:15 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 Americans 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.
Iran is Unlikely to Hang Dissident Aghajari-Lawyer
May 15, 2004
TEHRAN -- Iranian reformist academic Hashem Aghajari, whose death sentence for blasphemy in 2002 led to mass protests, is unlikely to be executed although a provincial court has upheld the sentence, his lawyer said on Saturday.
"The death sentence will definitely be quashed by the Supreme Court, if legal principles are taken into account," Aghajari's lawyer Saleh Nikbakht told Reuters.
Iranian newspapers on Saturday reported Zekrollah Ahmadi, judiciary chief in the western province of Hamadan where the sentence was reviewed, as saying Aghajari's case had been sent to the Supreme Court although no appeal had been lodged.
Aghajari himself has refused to appeal against the sentence, effectively challenging the hardline judiciary to hang him for saying Muslims should not blindly follow senior clerics "like monkeys."
Shi'ite Muslims have to follow the decrees of senior clerics. By debating this point Aghajari, a history lecturer, questioned the entire system of clerical rule.
Students staged mass protests when Aghajari's sentence was first handed down in November 2002, prompting Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei to call for a review of the case.
A provincial judge in Hamadan, carrying out the review, insisted on the death sentence in a closed-door session.
Some 600 people gathered on Tuesday at Tehran University to criticize the hardline judiciary's treatment of Aghajari, who lost a leg in the 1980-1988 war with Iraq.
His death sentence has been widely denounced in Iran, even by some Islamic conservatives who said it was a gift to reformists and Iran's Western enemies.
In a rare direct criticism this month, pro-reform President Mohammad Khatami condemned Aghajari's "unjust death sentence" and said the judge who issued it was "inexperienced."
End in Sight for Iranian Film Mocking Clerics
May 15, 2004
TEHRAN -- Iran is going to take a hit movie mocking clerics off cinema screens by Friday, the film's producer Manouchehr Mohammadi was quoted as saying on the official IRNA news agency on Saturday.
"The Lizard" follows the fortunes of a thief who escapes prison by donning the turban and robes of Iran's clerical elite. Ironically, he proves a crowd-pleaser as a preacher.
"This film is going to be taken off screens gradually by the end of this week," Mohammadi was quoted as saying.
The film, which had a contract to run for 11 weeks from April 21, has packed cinemas across the Islamic Republic. Mohammadi said it had grossed just under $1 million in Tehran alone.
But hard-liners have sharply criticized it. Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati -- head of the Guardian Council, an unelected constitutional watchdog with sweeping powers -- said recently the movie was a "bad influence and should be banned."
Worshippers in the cities of Shiraz and Hamadan heard prayer leaders attacking the film in sermons on Friday. It has already been banned in cities of Mashhad, Rasht and the seminary center of Qom.
"Those who oppose 'The Lizard' do not want cinema to exist as a modern medium. They want cinema to be down at heel," Mohammadi told reporters. "They are worried about films that make good money and the existence of brave and effective audience-based cinema," he added.
Strategists Call For Israeli Strikes Against Expanding WMD Threat
May 14, 2004
TEL AVIV -- Leading strategists in Israel have proposed preemptive strikes against the expanding threat posed by weapons of mass destruction arsenals in the Middle East.
A report, entitled "Israel's Strategic Future," called such strikes an option in preventing the formation of a WMD coalition. The report said the Jewish state has been threatened by a biological or nuclear first-strike that seeks to exploit Israel's small space and high population density.
"To meet its ultimate deterrence objectives that is, to deter the most overwhelmingly destructive enemy first-strikes Israel must seek and achieve a visible second-strike capability to target approximately 15 enemy cities," the report, presented to Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, said.
The report marked the last phase of Project Daniel, sponsored by the Ariel Center for Strategic Studies, part of the College of Judea and Samaria. The contributors to the report included [Res.] Maj. Gen. Yitzhak Ben-Yisrael, the former director of research and development at Israel's military and Defense Ministry, Middle East Newsline reported.
The report also urged the Israeli military to reduce the priority assigned to conventional warfare without impairing its superiority over any enemy coalition. The report said Israeli strategy must be revised to address the expanding threats from what it termed terrorism and long-range WMD attacks.
One option, the report said, would be to target an enemy WMD regime.
"The tools for preemptive operations would be novel, diverse and purposeful; for example, long-range aircraft with appropriate support for derived missions; long-range high-level intervention ground forces; long-endurance intelligence-collection systems; long-endurance unmanned air-strike platforms," the report said.
"Ranges would be to cities in Libya and Iran, and recognizable nuclear bomb yields would be at a level sufficient to fully compromise the aggressor's viability as a functioning state. All enemy targets should be selected with the view that their destruction would promptly force the enemy to cease all nuclear/biological/chemical exchanges with Israel."
The report called on Israel to operate a multi-layered ballistic missile defense system as well as establish a second-strike capability. Such a missile defense should include a Boost Phase Intercept capability as well as enhanced real-time intelligence acquisition, interpretation and transmission.
The report said that despite the prospect of a WMD attack, the principal existential threat to Israel was a conventional war mounted by a coalition of Arab states along with Iran. But such a war, the report said, could be facilitated by the development of WMD and result in nonconventional weapons strikes against the Jewish state.
"Irrespective of its policy on nuclear ambiguity vs. disclosure, Israel will not be able to endure unless it continues to maintain a credible, secure and decisive nuclear deterrent alongside a multi-layered anti-missile defense," the report said.
The report said advanced weaponry would enable Israel to reduce its defense expenditure while enhancing effectiveness and lethality in conventional warfare. The report cited the need for increased weapons range, precision, warhead efficiency; electronic warfare, reduced infrared and radio frequency signatures.
The report also stressed the need for real time tactical and strategic intelligence within a command, control, communications, computer and intelligence [C4I] system. The technologies cited to combat strategic threats included ballistic missile defense, early-warning satellites, combat unmanned air vehicles and deep-strike forces.
"There is no operational need for low-yield nuclear weapons geared for actual battlefield use," the report said. "There is no point in spreading and raising costs Israel's effort on low-yield, tactical nuclear weapons given the multifaceted asymmetry between Israel and its adversaries."
Israel must also maintain its policy of refusing to acknowledge nuclear capability, the report said. The report said such a policy should be revised in the future if an enemy state turns nuclear.
The report asserted that the development of an Arab and Iranian nuclear weapons program required 20 years while that of a long-range missile would need 12 years. But once development is completed, the report said, the production and acquisition of nuclear weapons and long-range missiles would entail a short process. Any country could build an arsenal of 100 atomic bombs within four years of the assembly of its first nuclear weapon.
"Israel will have to maximize its long-range, accurate, real-time strategic intelligence," the report said. "Israel will have to maximize the credibility of its second-strike capability. Israel will have to develop, test, manufacture and deploy a BPI [Boost Phase Intercept] capability to match the operational requirements dictated by enemy ballistic missile capacities -- performance and numbers."
The report also called on Israel to deploy recoverable and non-recoverable stealth UAVs to suppress enemy air defenses, electronic warfare, intelligence-gathering and strikes. The military was also urged to develop a second-strike land or sea nuclear capability.
To finance such an effort, Israel must cooperate with the United States, make better use of U.S. military aid and eliminate obstacles to U.S.-Israel defense trade. One option was for Israel to consider revising its defense strategy to account for an expanded U.S. military presence in the Middle East.
The report urged Israel to seek U.S. cooperation for a joint BPI project, something the Defense Department has refused. Another option was for the United States to "participate technologically and financially in Israel's multi-layered missile defense efforts as fully as possible."
Commemorators beaten up by security forces
SMCCDI (Information Service)
May 14, 2004
Tens of commemorators were beaten up and several of them arrested by the Islamic regime forces, yesterday, in the Niavaran Park of Tehran. Those subject to this brutal intervention were intending to pay tribute to Soosan, a deceased exiled popular singer, who passed away in Los Angles (California) few days ago.
Clubs and chains were used against the commemorators who, in retaliation, shouted slogans against the regime and its forces and thrown pieces of stones and hand made incendiary devices against the security vehicles. The clashes continued in this usually calm area of Tehran till the late hours of night.
Soosan was known for her opposition to the Islamic regime and advocacy for Iranian poors. She was cherisheed in the poor suburbs of Tehran and main Iranian cities and was qualified as the "Singer of the Deseherited".
This just in from a student inside of Iran...
"Please tell our American friends that Iranian Mullahs TV keeps saying that Terrorists and thugs in Iraq are popular forces and they are uprising against the US.
All in the states, should know HOW THESE MULLAHS FILL IRANIAN PEOPLES MINDS with their BS."
Montazeri Sees another Revolution Coming
Either officials change their methods and give freedom to the people, and stop interfering in elections, or the people will rise up with another revolution, dissident cleric Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri told New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof in Qom. There is no freedom, repression is carried out in the name of Islam, and that turns people off. . . . All these court summonses, newspaper closings and prosecutions of dissidents are wrong. These are the same things that were done under the shah and are now being repeated. And now they are done in the name of Islam and therefore alienate people, Montazeri said.
Freedom isn't free.
"it's better to die on your feet, than live on your knees."
It is a quote from Emilio Zapata, the George Washington of Mexico. Even though the mexican people have forgotten, it is still a good quote.
"Iran is going to take a hit movie mocking clerics off cinema screens by Friday, the film's producer Manouchehr Mohammadi was quoted as saying on the official IRNA news agency on Saturday."
Surprised they've allowed it to be shown this long.
" the growing recognition that the nonproliferation system that had served the world well during the cold war was now unraveling. "There's a consensus that something needs to be done," he said. "But there's not yet consensus on what needs to be done." "
And at this rate, there won't be a consensus until it's too late.