Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Iranian Alert - May 22, 2005 - Eye of the Storm: The Buzz in Teheran - MUST READ!
Regime Change Iran ^ | 5.22.2005 | DoctorZin

Posted on 05/22/2005 5:03:45 PM PDT by DoctorZIn

Top News Story

Eye of the Storm: The Buzz in Teheran

Amir Taheri, The Jerusalem Post:

While the world is focused on Iran's alleged efforts to build a nuclear arsenal, the more immediate debate about its regional strategy may have been sidelined. This, at least, is the opinion of Ibrahim Asgharzadeh, one of the mullahs and politicians who have registered to become candidates in Iran's presidential election next month.

In speeches in Teheran this week Asgharzadeh warned that a coalition of military commanders and mullahs is in the making with the aim of provoking "a direct confrontation" between the Islamic Republic and the United States in the Middle East, especially Afghanistan and Iraq.

"If these schemes go through the nation will be led into dangerous waters," Asgharzadeh warned. "There are people who want to push Iran into a war against the rest of the world, especially the United States."

Asgharzadeh is no run-of-the-mill power-seeker in the Khomeinist republic. He was one of the leaders of the "students" who raided the United States Embassy in Teheran in 1979 and held its 55 diplomats hostage for 444 days. After his hostage-taking experience he joined the Islamic Revolutionary Guard, took part in the liquidation of the regime's opponents, fought in the war against Iraq in the 1980s, and held ministerial posts before becoming chairman of the Teheran Municipal Council. He has also been a key adviser to President Muhammad Khatami whose second, and final, four-year term ends next month.
To be sure, Asgharzadeh has no chance of winning the presidency and may not even be allowed to become a candidate. The buzz in Teheran is that the "Supreme Guide" Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the effective ruler of the country with virtually limitless powers, plans to promote one of his acolytes to the presidency, thus flushing the pro-reform coalition out of their last slot within the regime.

Because no one quite knows how decisions are made in the Khomeinist system, in which formal government wields little power, it is not easy to independently verify Asgharzadeh's claim. But a careful reading of statements made by senior clerical and military leaders, including Khamenei himself, shows that a debate is taking place within the establishment.

IN A number of speeches during the past few weeks Khamenei has claimed that the Middle East and the Muslim world at large were now faced with a choice between "American-imposed" democracy and "revolutionary Islam" offered by Iran.

In one speech he told government officials to prepare for "the mighty battles" ahead as "the Imperialist-Zionist axis" tries to promote its notion of human rights in the Muslim world.

All this, of course, may be dismissed as the usual rhetorical fare that the Khomeinists have spouted for more than a quarter of a century. Nevertheless, there are several indications that the regime may be bracing itself for moving onto the offensive.

One sign came last month when Iran informed King Abdullah II of Jordan that plans that had been discussed last winter for him to act as an intermediary between Teheran and Washington were "no longer on the table."

The Jordanians believe that Iran changed its mind because it succeeded in driving a wedge between the US and its European Union allies. "The mullahs in Teheran could relax," says a senior adviser to the king. "They knew that, with the EU playing their game, they will get off the hook."

Another sign that Teheran may be moving onto the offensive came in a speech last week by Defense Minister Rear-Admiral Ali Shamkhani. He said his ministry had "comprehensive plans" to make "life like hell" for the US and its allies throughout the region.

"Wherever they [i.e. the Americans] are, we are also," he said. "And wherever they can hit us we can hit them, and harder."

Asgharzadeh's analysis is backed by other analysts and observers in Teheran, including Saeed Hajjarian, another former regime insider.

These analysts believe that Khamenei is increasingly relying on the military who are, in turn, demanding a bigger share in decision-making.

Several Revolutionary Guard commanders including Rahim Safavi, Muhammad-Baqer Zolqadr and Yadallah Javani have broken the long-established tradition under which the Iranian military never comment on political issues. To highlight their claim to a share in political decision-making the guard commanders have fielded one of their own, Brig. Muhammad-Baqer Qalibaf, a former police chief, as candidate in next month's presidential election.

The guard commanders believe that President George W. Bush's campaign for democracy in the Muslim world is primarily aimed at Iran and should be thwarted by engaging the US in low-intensity warfare wherever possible. The idea is that Bush is an aberration and that once his term ends the US would revert to the defensive posture it had maintained in the Middle East since the Carter administration in the 1970s.

"The Americans do not have the stomach for a long fight," says Brig. Javani, one of the rising stars of the military in Teheran.

Most observers, including Asgharzadeh, agree that the debate over whether to take on the US on all fronts in the region has not yet been finalized.

Much depends on what happens in Iraq within the next few months. But pressure for the Islamic Republic to go on the offensive against the US is growing. And the military, who appear to be developing political ambitions, are already increasing their assets in Afghanistan, the Persian Gulf region, Iraq and Lebanon, in preparation for low-intensity and prolonged showdowns with the US. Next month's presidential election would offer some indication about the future course of the debate within the regime.

A Daily Briefing of Major News Stories on Iran:



TOPICS: Extended News; Foreign Affairs; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: aaipacspiesonus; alqaedaandiran; alsadr; ambyss; anniversary; armyofmahdi; axisofevil; axisofweasels; ayatollah; azadi; binladen; bush43; china; cleric; cruisemissiles; democracy; disinformation; elbaradei; eu; freedom; freedomdeficit; germany; humanrights; iaea; impendingapocalypse; impendingarmageddon; insurgency; iran; iranianalert; irannukes; iranpolicy; iraq; irgc; iri; islam; islamicfanatics; islamicrepublic; israel; japan; journalist; kazemi; khamenei; khatami; letsroll; madmullahs; mahdi; moqtadaalsadr; mullahs; muslims; nomoreiran; norooz; nukeem; nukes; opec; persecution; persia; persian; persians; persianvote; politicalprisoners; protests; rafsanjani; regimechangeiran; revolutionaryguard; rumsfeld; russia; satellitetelephones; shiite; smccdi; southasia; southwestasia; studentmovement; studentprotest; taketheoiltoo; tehran; terrorism; terrorists; us; vevak; wot; zawahiri

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

1 posted on 05/22/2005 5:03:51 PM PDT by DoctorZIn
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

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 05/22/2005 5:05:25 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DoctorZIn

Thank you. Very informing.


3 posted on 05/22/2005 5:12:12 PM PDT by BigFinn
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DoctorZIn

bump


4 posted on 05/22/2005 5:14:01 PM PDT by kimosabe31
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DoctorZIn
ever eager to see Iran go peacefully democratic, it bears reminding:

If the pro-freedom forces don't start killing the jihadi-fascists soon and force a civil war, they should start moving away from the Iranian nuke facilities... very soon.
5 posted on 05/22/2005 5:15:47 PM PDT by Yehuda (America: Land of the free, THANKS TO THE BRAVE! [" Choke on it, pinkos!"])
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DoctorZIn

bump


6 posted on 05/22/2005 5:16:50 PM PDT by spower
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: BigFinn

Wasn't this the guy who was going to fly into Iran a few months ago and take over?

I think his tin-foil hat has fallen off again.


7 posted on 05/22/2005 5:19:21 PM PDT by Right Wing Assault ("..this administration is planning a 'Right Wing Assault' on values and ideals.." - John Kerry)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: DoctorZIn

They're next!


8 posted on 05/22/2005 5:19:44 PM PDT by demsux
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DoctorZIn
Longer than you will be in this world...
9 posted on 05/22/2005 5:20:20 PM PDT by JasonC
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Right Wing Assault

I was referring to Doctor Zin, not anyone in the article.


10 posted on 05/22/2005 5:20:27 PM PDT by Right Wing Assault ("..this administration is planning a 'Right Wing Assault' on values and ideals.." - John Kerry)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: DoctorZIn

Perhaps this is all just sabre rattling based on not knowing what else to say publically. I guess I do not read anything new in this article we already did not understand. One thing appears certain, the Mullahs will continue to dictate how heavy the joke of oppression should be for their people. No one is going to change the regiem any time soon. They know just how much they can get away with and will go no further.
Thanks for post.


11 posted on 05/22/2005 5:20:54 PM PDT by Marine_Uncle
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DoctorZIn

"Wherever they [i.e. the Americans] are, we are also," he said. "And wherever they can hit us we can hit them, and harder."


Wanna bet?
Someone really needs to give Khamenei some reality therapy. Going to war with the worlds only superpower is a REALLY bad idea.

What do dictators do when they think they're going to lose power?


12 posted on 05/22/2005 5:25:25 PM PDT by Valin (The right to do something does not mean that doing it is right.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DoctorZIn

http://rescueattempt.tripod.com/sitebuildercontent/sitebuilderpictures/iranian-student-leader.jpg

Here's a picture of this terrorist.

recently he was quoted as saying he wanted better relations with the US.

Seems he is true to his Islamikazi colors.


13 posted on 05/22/2005 6:29:40 PM PDT by RaceBannon ((Prov 28:1 KJV) The wicked flee when no man pursueth: but the righteous are bold as a lion.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Right Wing Assault
The author of this article is one of the most respected Middle East journalists alive today. He is the former editor of Kayhan, which was the most respected newspaper in Iran, during the time of the Shah.

He understands the nuances of the Middle East.

The person that wanted to fly into Iran and "bring down the regime" is a Mr. Yazdi. He never left the U.S.
14 posted on 05/22/2005 6:38:04 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: Valin

"Wherever they [i.e. the Americans] are, we are also," he said. "And wherever they can hit us we can hit them, and harder."

From what I can tell, the important thing in contemporary military confrontation for these guys is the face they show their enemy. Not what is actually achieved on the battlefield. That's why Saddam was able to claim victory in the first Gulf War even though he got his butt kicked on the battlefield. He never gave in to US demands, that's what was most important.


15 posted on 05/22/2005 6:41:23 PM PDT by Gum Shoe (I'm not a professional military officer, I just play one on TV.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: DoctorZIn

>>>>"The Americans do not have the stomach for a long fight," says Brig. Javani, one of the rising stars of the military in Teheran<<<<

Dont worry , it wont take long dickbreath.


16 posted on 05/22/2005 6:49:23 PM PDT by sgtbono2002
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DoctorZIn

My mistake. You are correct.


17 posted on 05/22/2005 6:55:55 PM PDT by Right Wing Assault ("..this administration is planning a 'Right Wing Assault' on values and ideals.." - John Kerry)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 14 | View Replies]

To: Gum Shoe

As the old saying goes "That was then, this is now."


18 posted on 05/22/2005 7:18:15 PM PDT by Valin (The right to do something does not mean that doing it is right.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

To: Valin

"The Americans do not have the stomach for a long fight," says Brig. Javani, one of the rising stars of the military in Teheran."

He's correct, it will have to be quick and very violent.


19 posted on 05/22/2005 8:43:42 PM PDT by Bringbackthedraft (tor)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 18 | View Replies]

To: DoctorZIn

Military commanders in Tehran think that they have upper hand to rule the country.

Given the fact that they are absolutely crazy, it will bring an imminent confrontation between the US and Iran both in diplomatic and military scenes.


20 posted on 05/22/2005 9:09:47 PM PDT by Khashayar (Screw You and Your Gas!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 14 | View Replies]

To: DoctorZIn; SJackson; yonif; Happy2BMe; Simcha7; American in Israel; Taiwan Bocks; ...
'Ping!'


AMERICA AT WAR
At Salem the Soldier's Homepage ~
Islam, a Religion of Peace®? Some links...  by backhoe

American Flag

21 posted on 05/22/2005 9:16:42 PM PDT by Salem (FREE REPUBLIC - Fighting to win within the Arena of the War of Ideas! So get in the fight!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DoctorZIn

Reformers threaten to boycott Iran election as council bars them from running

CBC News
May 23

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) - Iran's hardline constitutional watchdog has rejected all reformists who registered to run in next month's presidential election, approving only six of the 1,010 hopefuls, state-run television reported Sunday.

The dramatic announcement prompted a crisis meeting from opposition groups, who immediately threatened to boycott the election.

"We are warning the Guardian Council that we will not participate in the election if it doesn't reverse its decision," Rajabali Mazrouei, a top member of the reformist Islamic Iran Participation Front, told the Associated Press.

"Barring reform candidates means there will be no free or fair election," he said.

Similar outrage was provoked last year when the Council - which supervises the elections - disqualified more than 2,000 moderate candidates from legislative elections, leading to a low voter turnout. Reformers denounced that vote as a "historical fiasco."

But the Council's announcement appeared to be the final decision, and effectively leaves moderates seeking democratic change within the ruling Islamic establishment without a candidate.

Ruling clerics are trying to consolidate their power following the departure of reformist President Mohammad Khatami, who is barred from seeking another term. Khatami came to power in a popular landslide in 1997, but hardline clerics led by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei have succeeded in stifling his program for political and social reform.

The approved candidates for the June 17 presidential race included powerful former president Hashemi Rafsanjani, who moves frequently between the hardline and more moderate camps and was seen as a front-runner.

The other approved candidates were former police chief Mohammad Bagher Qalibaf, former radio and television chief Ali Larijani, Tehran Mayor Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, former parliamentary speaker Mahdi Karroubi, and former head of the elite Revolutionary Guards Mohsen Rezaei.

Former culture minister Mostafa Moin, who was the sole candidate of Iran's largest reformist party, the Islamic Iran Participation Front, was among those disqualified. Another top reformist hopeful was Vice President Mohsen Mehralizadeh, who heads Iran's sports organization.

The Guardian Council said in a statement its announcement did not mean the disqualified registrants could not get other government posts.

"Announcing the names of those possessing the qualifications (to run) doesn't negate at all the competency of those not in the list from taking other responsibilities," the statement said.

The Council is controlled by hardliners loyal to Khamenei, who has the final say on all state matters. The council barred women from running for the office.

The presidential election comes as Iran faces international pressure to cease its controversial nuclear program. It is trying to convince the United States and Europe that it is not seeking to develop weapons, but to produce nuclear energy.

Moin was the only hopeful who supported continued suspension of all of Iran's uranium enrichment-related activities to avoid a nuclear crisis and reach a political compromise with the Europeans.

Iran has vowed to restart some uranium reprocessing activities soon, saying it will unilaterally resume such activities if last chance talks with Europeans fail later this week.

Rezaei, Larijani, Ahmadinejad and Qalibaf are widely seen as Khamenei candidates because of their strong loyalty to him. All of them are former military commanders.

Karroubi is a hardliner-turned-reformer who has lost his popularity among the youth and reformists because of his increasing support of Khamenei and his rigid policies.

With the reformist movement severely weakened, Rafsanjani is seen as the most credible force to stop hardline allies of Iran's supreme leader from seizing the post of president. But the savvy politician has changed his stripes frequently in the past, sometimes backing the hardliner camp, sometimes taking a more moderate line and seeking to build ties with the west.

Political analyst Saeed Leylaz suggested hardliners were hoping to avoid a candidate, like Moin, who has the support of the youth of the nation.

"For hardliners, Khatami's victory was equal to allowing the predominantly young nation criticizing the ruling establishment. Allowing Moin to run may repeat that historical event. They don't to take such a risk again," he said.

Leylaz said the disqualification of progressive candidates undermines the legitimacy of the elections.

"The disqualification damages the credibility of the ruling system, discourages the public from voting," he said. "Apparently hardliners prefer discrediting the country rather than giving up power despite unpopularity."

http://www.cbc.ca/cp/world/050522/w052260.html


22 posted on 05/22/2005 10:14:52 PM PDT by F14 Pilot (Democracy is a process not a product)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: DoctorZIn

Some recent pix of Journalists' protest in Tehran

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1408517/posts


23 posted on 05/22/2005 11:28:59 PM PDT by Khashayar (Screw You and Your Gas!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: DoctorZIn
"In speeches in Teheran this week Asgharzadeh warned that a coalition of military commanders and mullahs is in the making with the aim of provoking "a direct confrontation" between the Islamic Republic and the United States in the Middle East, especially Afghanistan and Iraq."

I strongly suspected Iran's ruling mullahs, in conjunction with Syria, Hizballah & Hamas would attempt to coordinate some sort of multi-wave of terrorism directed at Iraq, Israel, Afghanistan and Lebanon as well.

The fanatical mullahs are cognizant a showdown with the U.S. & Israel is inevitable over Tehran's threatening nuclear build up.

Assad and the powers behind him in Damascus are also aware the winds of freedom are blowing from the direction of Lebanon and they will use Hizballah to keep the fires of tension burning inside Lebanon, and by way of firing rockets into northern Israel.

Real lasting 'peace' is completely impossible due to the robot like, suicidal nature of Islamic death cults. Their way is only total jihad to the death.

Hamas, supported by Iran & Syria will try to launch a new wave of terror, which this time Israel will most likely respond with mammoth anti-terrorist counter measures

The tyrants of Tehran also know their vast amounts of OPEC crude oil exports can also be used as a weapon, if they think their time as a régime is drawing to an end.

The six so-called 'candidates' for Iran's June presidential election approved on May 22nd by the Guardians Council, the country's election watchdog. Clockwise from top L are hardliner, popular former police chief Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf, conservative former president and current frontrunner Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, former state broadcast boss and Revolutionary Guards veteran hardliner Ali Larijani, hardline Tehran mayor Mahmud Ahmadi Nejad, moderate former parliament speaker Mehdi Karoubi and hardline former chief of the Revolutionary Guards Mohsen Rezai(AFP/File)

As a copy of the Islamic holy book Quran is held by a man, foreground right, Iranians attend an anti-U.S rally to condemn the alleged desecration of the Quran by American interrogators in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba after Friday prayers at the Enqelab (Revolution) square in Tehran, Iran, Friday>

The evil eye: An Iranian woman in front of a portrait of the late founder of the Islamic Republic Ayatollah Khomeini in Tehran. Despite all the tough talk, Iran will likely delay acting on its threat to resume its nuclear program during talks this week with the European Union (EU), analysts say.(AFP/File/Behrouz

24 posted on 05/23/2005 3:56:52 AM PDT by M. Espinola (Freedom is never, ever 'free'.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: M. Espinola

Good post, thanx!


25 posted on 05/23/2005 8:14:10 AM PDT by nuconvert (No More Axis of Evil by Christmas ! TLR) [there's a lot of bad people in the pistachio business])
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

To: DoctorZIn

Iranian Truth
Saturday, May 21, 2005

http://iraniantruth.blogspot.com/2005/05/rise-of-militarism-there-is-view-now.html

The Rise of Militarism

There is a view now amongst Western writers and shared by some Iranian journalists that the actual issue behind the current presidential elections, and the recent parlamentarian elections, is the rise of militarism. Patrick Clawson of the Washington Institute on Near East Policy, a right-wing think tank, writes: "Nearly all of the important political figures to date—reformers and hardliners alike—came from the 1979 revolutionary generation. By contrast, many of the hardliners elected to the Majlis last year were new political faces from the 1980–88 Iran-Iraq war generation (to which the rest of the candidates openly appeal)." William Samii discusses the same trend in the Weekly Standard.

Indeed key political positions have already been taken over by members of the Revolutionary Guards. Last year, Ezatollah Zarghami was named chief of national television and radio chief, a key political position in Iran which, prior to Zarghami, was held by Ali Larijani, one of the key conservative presidential candidates this year. Furthermore, the closure of Iran's new international airport by the Revolutionary Guard, justified on the basis that the involvement of a Turkish consortium represents a threat to national security and prestige, has been viewed by many commentators as the Revolutionary Guards greatest demonstration of power. Particularly, given that the company which lost the contract bid to build the airport to the Turkish consortium allegedly has close ties to the Revolutionary Guards.

Needless to say, the Revolutionary Guards have a favored candidate in these elections, Tehran mayor Mahmoud Ahmadinezhad. Ahmadinezhad is supported by the Alliance of Builders of Islamic Iran, a conservative party which dominated the recent parliamentarian elections by winning almost all of Tehran's seats. Assuming this trend to continue, one would expect that Iranian foreign policy begin to reflect current militarist perspectives in Israel This would mean the expansion of unilateralism, alarmism, political conservatism, and authoritarianism. Even where a reformist candidate were to be elected, given the limited powers allocated to the president, if the election were to demonstrate the infiltration of militarism in the conservative party, rather then pragmatism, it is more likely then not that Iran's economic and political reform process will collapse altogether.

Also posted at Iranscan.net
|| Nema # 5/21/2005 05:24:00 AM


26 posted on 05/23/2005 8:53:35 AM PDT by Valin (The right to do something does not mean that doing it is right.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DoctorZIn
To read today’s thread click here.

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”

27 posted on 05/23/2005 10:39:01 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: nuconvert

Thank you :)


28 posted on 05/23/2005 6:25:20 PM PDT by M. Espinola (Freedom is never, ever 'free'.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 25 | View Replies]

To: Bringbackthedraft
"The Americans do not have the stomach for a long fight," says Brig. Javani, one of the rising stars of the military in Teheran."

"He's correct, it will have to be quick and very violent."

I think they may be waiting for a liberal president who would be much less likely to engage to victory militarily.
29 posted on 05/24/2005 11:56:15 AM PDT by Jim 0216
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson