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Iranian Alert - February 22, 2005 - Iran, Syria Anti-US-Israel Alliance is a Hoax: Analysts
Regime Change Iran ^ | 2.22.2005 | DoctorZin

Posted on 02/22/2005 1:04:19 AM PST by DoctorZIn

Top News Story

Iran, Syria Anti-US-Israel Alliance is a Hoax: Analysts

Safa Haeri, Iran Press Service:

The proposed alliance between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Arab Republic of Syria aimed a thwarting threats from the United States is more a hoax than a serious project, Iranian analysts said.

"We are ready to help Syria on all grounds to confront threats", Iranian Vice-President Mohammad Reza Aref assured last week after meeting Syrian Prime Minister Naji al-Otari in Tehran.

"Our Syrian brothers are facing specific threats and we hope they can benefit from our experience. We are ready to give them any help necessary", Mr Aref said told reporters, stopping short to specify what kind of assistance the Islamic Republic can bring Syria, as the two countries are badly isolated in the international scene, are extremely unpopular at home and have weak armies, equipped with ageing weapons.

According to the Iranians, the proposal for a Syrian-Iranian front was made by Mr. Otari during his visit to Tehran, where he arrived one day after the assassination of Mr. Rafik Hariri, a former Lebanese Premier on 16 February.

But Washington said that if Iran and Syria had aimed their remarks at the US they were "misreading the issue".

The two countries have a strategic alliance established in 1980

after the Arab Republic of Syria took alone the side of non Arab Iran when it that was attacked by the now toppled Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein and both are supporting the Lebanese Hezbollah organization against Israel and moderate Palestinians.

This is like a blind offering his services to another blind”, said Mr. Ali Keshtgar, an Iranian dissident activist living in Paris, adding that the proposed alliance is in total contradiction with the sentiments of the Lebanese people calling for the withdrawal of Syrian forces from their country. ...

According to Iranian travelers, the news of firing a missile on the nuclear reactor of Bushehr, by the Arabic service of the Iranian Radio and Television was itself an Iranian maneuver to divert tensions from Damascus to something else, as the information had caused an immediate soaring of oil prices.

But if the creation of an axis between Iran and Syria looks possible in theory, a proposal presented earlier by the Iranians, including Ayatollah Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, the Iranian regime’s number two man in command to form an axis made of Tehran, Baghdad, Beirut and Damascus falls in the domain of outright foolishness, observers points out. ...

Nevertheless, there is no doubt that Tehran was not very happy with the visit of Mr. Otari at a time that hundreds of thousands of Lebanese were demonstrating against Syria.

Asked about the project by reporters, Mr. Kamal Kharrazi, the Iranian Foreign Affairs Minister downplayed its importance, observing that while the two nations have both common enemies and mutual interests, but the creation of such an axis is not “their primary objective. ...

A Daily Briefing of Major News Stories on Iran:

Why Millions Say, Softly, God Bless America - Paul Johnson, Forbes

Syria hints at pullout as Beirut protesters fill streets - Nicholas Blanford in Beirut,

Riots Rock Three Kurdish Towns in Iran - Iran Focus

Shia Mourning Ritual Turns Into Deadly Protest Demos - SMCCDI (Information Service)

Students Protesting in Tehran - From an Iranian Student

Bin Laden not arrested by Iran: Ramezanzadeh - IranMania

Excerpts: Bush address ... Iran - BBC News

Scott Ritter Says US Will Attack Iran in June - News Hounds

Blog interview - Michael Ledeen: "Never, never, ever give in to tyranny" - Chrenkoff

TOPICS: Extended News; Foreign Affairs
KEYWORDS: alqaedaandiran; alsadr; anniversary; armyofmahdi; axisofevil; axisofweasels; ayatollah; azadi; binladen; bush43; china; cleric; democracy; elbaradei; eu; freedom; freedomdeficit; germany; humanrights; iaea; impendingapocalypse; impendingarmageddon; insurgency; iran; iranianalert; iraq; irgc; iri; islam; islamicrepublic; japan; journalist; kazemi; khamenei; khatami; letsroll; moqtadaalsadr; mullahs; muslims; persecution; persia; persian; persians; persianvote; politicalprisoners; protests; rafsanjani; regimechangeiran; revolutionaryguard; rumsfeld; russia; satellitetelephones; shiite; southasia; southwestasia; studentmovement; studentprotest; terrorism; terrorists; us; vevak; wot; zawahiri

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1 posted on 02/22/2005 1:04:32 AM PST by DoctorZIn
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To: Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; McGavin999; Hinoki Cypress; ...
Join Us At Today's Iranian Alert Thread – The Most Underreported Story Of The Year!

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2 posted on 02/22/2005 1:06:30 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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To: All

Up to 400 dead in Iran quake

Tue. 22 Feb 2005
By Parisa Hafezi

TEHRAN - A strong earthquake has hit southeast Iran, killing almost 400 people, injuring hundreds and destroying villages, a local official has told Reuters.

Tuesday's quake, which measured 6.4 on the Richter scale, was centred on the town of Zarand in Kerman province, about 700 km (440 miles) southeast of Tehran.

While villages were razed, major settlements in the area appeared to have escaped heavy damage so the toll would not be as high as the many thousands killed in some past quakes in Iran of a similar strength, officials said.

"Figures we have show that in the early hours more than 1,000 were injured and almost 400 killed," said Ali Komsari, a spokesman for the Kerman provincial governor's office.

State radio, quoting other local officials, said 104 had been killed and hundreds injured.

"We are expecting the death toll to rise," Ali Sharifi, head of Kerman's medical university, told radio.

The head of Kerman Natural Disaster Headquarters, Mohsen Salehi, was quoted by the official IRNA news agency as saying destruction in five villages was between 20 and 70 percent.

The tremor, which struck at 5:55 a.m. (2:25 a.m. British time), evoked memories of the devastating earthquake which hit the desert citadel city of Bam, about 250 km (160 miles) southeast of Zarand in December 2003.

The pre-dawn Bam quake, which had a magnitude of 6.7, flattened the city, killing some 31,000 people.

Criss-crossed by several major fault lines, Iran is one of the most earthquake-prone countries in the world, natural disaster experts say.

But damage in major urban centres on Tuesday was light.

"In Zarand and Kerman only some walls have collapsed and there were no casualties," Interior Ministry spokesman Jahanbakhsh Khanjani said.

Kerman Governor Mohammad Ali Karimi told television that aid groups had been sent to the villages but he had not yet asked for any help from other provinces.

No major oil or gas production facilities are located in the affected area in OPEC's second largest oil producer.

3 posted on 02/22/2005 1:31:26 AM PST by Khashayar (We are the champions, No time to lose us!)
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To: All
A secret student meeting against the Mullahs in a university class in Tehran

4 posted on 02/22/2005 1:45:54 AM PST by Khashayar (We are the champions, No time to lose us!)
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To: Khashayar

In this image made from Iranian IRINN TV, Tuesday, Feb. 22, 2005, men are shown lifting a body from the rubble of a destroyed building in the town of Zarand, Iran, following a powerful earthquake. Several villages have been destroyed according to reports, in the 6.4 magnitude quake, leaving an unknown number of people dead and injured. (AP Photo / IRINN TV)

5 posted on 02/22/2005 2:30:34 AM PST by Khashayar (We are the champions, No time to lose us!)
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To: All

6 posted on 02/22/2005 3:08:22 AM PST by Khashayar (We are the champions, No time to lose us!)
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To: DoctorZIn; McGavin999; freedom44; nuconvert; sionnsar; AdmSmith; parisa; onyx; Pro-Bush; Valin; ...


7 posted on 02/22/2005 3:11:42 AM PST by F14 Pilot (Democracy is a process not a product)
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To: DoctorZIn


8 posted on 02/22/2005 4:10:27 AM PST by windchime (Hillary: "I've always been a preying person")
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To: Khashayar

OHhh.....It looks very bad; Like when an F5 tornado hits a town here.
Very sad.

9 posted on 02/22/2005 4:35:46 AM PST by nuconvert (No More Axis of Evil by Christmas ! TLR)
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To: Khashayar; DoctorZIn; All

10 posted on 02/22/2005 5:12:20 AM PST by nuconvert (No More Axis of Evil by Christmas ! TLR)
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To: Khashayar

My heart grieves for each precious Iranian who has suffered loss in this wretched quake. Prayers....

11 posted on 02/22/2005 7:16:32 AM PST by Reborn
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To: Reborn

Only the good dye young. Unfortunate in its horrible death and injured toll and an unfortunate distraction for the forces of political change.

Also I think mullahs are spread too thin and preoccupied by their own insecurities to be any good for Syria. Just empty threats, as always.

12 posted on 02/22/2005 12:56:07 PM PST by Reza2004
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To: Reza2004
First, I wish to express my condolences for all those killed and injured in the earthquake today.

Now, it appears that British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw said something that has more truth in it that he realized, I think. I think he forgot to be deceptive and he said what he really thinks:

"We will do all we can to help the Iranian government," said Mr Straw.

This may seem over the top, but Jack Straw has long been a supporter of terrorism. So, it's only natural that Straw would be inclined to encourage his government to support the Iranian regime.

We're doing pretty good. Free and fair elections in Afghanistan in 2004, Iraq in 2005 (three times!). Will Lebanon be next? It looks like it. However, the question is if regime change in Syria will be necessary for freedom and democracy to come to Lebanon? If Assad takes Syria out of Lebanon, suffice it to say he won't be popular among the dictators. No, he won't do it. Unless they dig up Saddam's WMDs before leaving. If Syrian forces leave Lebanon without the use of force, then I think that means that Assad's regime will begin to crumble.

Unlike the president, I don't [yet] consider the elections in Palestine to be any more significant than the Arafat's "re-election" in 1996. Abbas may be softer than Arafat, but he's still on the side of terror. The "two-state solution" doesn't look any less disastrous today than when Bush propsed it in 2002. In my amatuer judgement, the opportunity created by Arafat's death has been lost. We may have to wait a generation for a similar opportunity. What I think should be have been done, a long time ago:

The IDF should have invaded and conquered all of the Palestinian lands. Wouldn't be difficult to do, although the Palestinians hate the Jews already, and would love to kill some more. Israeli (and American if the president would have felt so inclined) forces would eliminate the PA and all terrorist groups and the terrorists themselves, wiping the area clean. The military would then withdraw ASAP as non-UN groups would come into the country to establish a democracy, vis-a-vis Iraq and Afghanistan. My solution may seem extreme, but I have zero confidence in any other solution. Most especially the critically flawed Roadmap for peace. It's a roadmap for disaster, in all reality. It'll never work.

13 posted on 02/22/2005 4:24:23 PM PST by JWojack (Rice for President in 2008!)
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To: DoctorZIn; nuconvert; freedom44; Khashayar; F14 Pilot; Grampa Dave; MeekOneGOP; Happy2BMe; ...
Syria's Bashar Assad and Iran's Swami Khatami are an Axis of Dead Men Talking.

Daniel Pipes sees progress for freedom in the near-term:

Lebanon's Liberation Approaches
by Daniel Pipes
New York Sun
February 22, 2005

The fate of Syria was in good measure determined on January 21, 1994. That's when, driving at a too-high speed to the Damascus airport for a skiing trip abroad, Basil Al-Assad crashed the Mercedes he was driving, killing himself and his passengers.

The accident had great consequence because Basil, then 31, was being groomed to succeed his father, Hafez Al-Assad, as dictator of Syria. All indications pointed to the equestrian, martial, and charismatic Basil making for a formidable ruler.

After the car crash, his younger brother Bashar got yanked back from his ophthalmologic studies in London and enrolled in a rapid course to prepare as Syria's next strongman. He perfunctorily ascended the military ranks and on his father's demise in June 2000 he, sure enough, succeeded to the presidential throne. (This made Bashar the second dynastic dictator, with Kim Jong Il of North Korea having been the first in 1994. The third one, being Faure Gnassingbé of Togo, emerged earlier this month. Other sons waiting in the wings include Gamal Mubarak of Egypt, Saifuddin Gadhafi of Libya, and Ahmed Salih of Yemen. Saddam Hussein's pair never made it.)

The possibility existed that Bashar, due to his brief Western sojourn and scientific orientation, would dismantle his father's totalitarian contraption; Bashar's early steps suggested he might do just that, but then he quickly reverted to his father's autocratic methods - either because of his own inclinations or because he remained under the sway of his father's grandees.

His father's methods, yes, but not his skills. The elder Assad was a tactical genius, even if his rule ultimately failed (he never regained the Golan Heights, never came close to destroying Israel, and rode Syria's economy and culture into the ground). The younger Assad combines strategic blindness with tactical ineptitude.

Within months of Bashar's accession, questions arouse about his ability to retain control over Lebanon; not long after, his ability to hold on to power in Syria itself came under doubt. The Syrian government's rush to the side of Saddam Hussein just as he was ousted made eyebrows rise with wonder. Bashar's pattern of promising one thing to U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell, then instantly breaking his word caused general bafflement.

These mistakes prompted passage of two landmark anti-regime measures. In December 2003, the American government passed the Syrian Accountability Act which punished Damascus for its malfeasance. In September 2004, the U.N. Security Council passed Resolution 1559 which called on all "foreign forces" to withdraw their troops from Lebanon, a clear reference to the Syrian troops that arrived in 1976.

These steps encouraged leading Lebanese politicians to demand the withdrawal of Syrian forces. Most notably, Druze leader Walid Jumblatt and Sunni leader Rafik Hariri took this fateful step, thereby threatening to deprive Damascus of both its sense of territorial achievement and its golden Lebanese economic goose.

There can be little doubt that Mr. Assad was behind the massive (probably underground) blast on February 14 that gouged a 20-yard-wide crater, killing Hariri and 16 others. With his flair for incompetence, Mr. Assad presumably decided that the former prime minister had to die for this betrayal. But, quite contrary to Mr. Assad's presumed expectations, far from reducing pressures on Syria to leave Lebanon, the atrocity magnified and intensified them.

Mr. Assad's response – pretending to denounce the murder, putting a relative in charge of the intelligence services, purchasing SA-18 anti-aircraft missiles from Russia, and announcing a mutual defense pact with Tehran – points to his cluelessness about the trouble he has stirred up for himself. For the first time in three decades, Lebanon now seems within reach of regaining its independence. "I don't see how Syria can stay now," observes Lebanon's former president, Amin Gemayel.

The reassertion of Lebanon's independence will fittingly reward an unsung steadfastness. The Lebanese may have once squandered their sovereignty, starting with the Syrian invasion of 1976 and culminating in the nearly complete occupation of 1990, but they showed dignity and bravery under occupation. Against the odds, they asserted a civil society, kept alive the hope of freedom, and retained a sense of patriotism.

Lebanon's independence will also serve as a large nail in the coffin of the brutal, failed, and unloved Assad dynasty. If things go right, Syria's liberation should follow on Lebanon's.

Thus can a mere traffic accident influence history.

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14 posted on 02/22/2005 6:11:09 PM PST by PhilDragoo (Hitlery: das Butch von Buchenvald)
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To: JWojack

IMHO, We should not expect elections in those newly democratized nations to be more than for perception, at first. We also should not expect everyone to replace their cultural values and superstitions with ours and we should not force them to. We should support forces and organizations that promote science and education.
When people of countries under tyrannical rule free themselves, the results are worlds apart from those that are freed by outside force. In a country like Iran, fundamental Islam is a cuss word to majority and this majority and the nature of Persian culture will quickly assimilate the remaining minority and a few short years later, we will have a robust democratic political process in place. People of Iran already are free of mullahs but haven’t removed them yet.
In Palestine, Syria, Iraq, oh boy KSA, Pakistan and … there is another force at work, Islam. Islam is field with self-preservation or bust techniques for its hard-core believers. They shouldn’t be measured and compared to Iran and it’s educated none Arab Moslems. The reason I think is that Arabs had no identity before Islam while Persia never gave up its culture and identity entirely to Islam and we are witnessing a nation resisting the invasion of an Arab ideology. I bet once Arab people are exposed to reality, truth and therefore what they didn’t know that they didn’t know, within a few generations, they will free themselves or fall in line to a given process like the one in Iraq.

15 posted on 02/22/2005 6:36:43 PM PST by Reza2004
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To: PhilDragoo

"The younger Assad combines strategic blindness with tactical ineptitude."

Not a winning combo

16 posted on 02/22/2005 7:11:36 PM PST by nuconvert (No More Axis of Evil by Christmas ! TLR)
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To: Reza2004

The example of Pakistan in my last comment was mistakenly bunched with reference to Arab Moslems. They are as well as Iran a none Arab nation but culturally very Moslem.

17 posted on 02/22/2005 8:17:40 PM PST by Reza2004
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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!

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18 posted on 02/23/2005 10:21:44 AM PST by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
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