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Iranian Alert -- DAY 16 -- LIVE THREAD PING LIST
Live Thread Ping List | 6.25.2003 | DoctorZin

Posted on 06/25/2003 12:17:58 AM PDT by DoctorZIn

In 13 days (July 9th) the people of Iran are planning massive demonstrations events and strikes. On this date, 4 years ago, the regime brutally attacked peaceful student demonstrators while in their dorms. The result was the loss of life and liberty of hundreds of students, many of which are still unaccounted for.

Iran is a country ready for a regime change. If you follow this thread you will witness, I believe, the transformation of a country. This daily thread provides a central place where those interested in the events in Iran can find the best news and commentary.

Please continue to post your news stories and comments to this thread.

Thanks for all the help.


TOPICS: Extended News; Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: iran; protests; southasialist; studentmovement

1 posted on 06/25/2003 12:17:58 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: JulieRNR21; Ernest_at_the_Beach; Pan_Yans Wife; RobFromGa; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; ...
Iranian Alert -- DAY 16 -- LIVE THREAD PING LIST

Live Thread Ping List | 6.25.2003 | DoctorZin
Posted on 06/25/2003 12:17 AM PDT by DoctorZIn

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/935122/posts

"If you want on or off this Iran ping list, Freepmail me”
2 posted on 06/25/2003 12:21:14 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad)
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To: DoctorZIn
Dr. ZIn, I forgot to ask you to sign me up. Thanks in advance! --risk

P.S. Take care...
3 posted on 06/25/2003 12:25:50 AM PDT by risk
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To: JulieRNR21; Ernest_at_the_Beach; Pan_Yans Wife; RobFromGa; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; ...
Congressman backs Iran dialogue

Financial Times
By Guy Dinmore
Published: June 25 2003 5:00 | Last Updated: June 25 2003 5:00

Bob Ney, a Republican congressman for Ohio, yesterday extended an invitation to Iran's parliamentarians to engage in a dialogue with the US Congress.

The offer by Mr Ney, a Farsi speaker, to engage Tehran was intended as a riposte to moves by Republican senators to make regime change in Iran official US policy and cut off communications.

Iranian parliamentarians have previously expressed a desire to meet their US counterparts but their efforts were blocked by higher authorities in Tehran. Guy Dinmore, Washington

http://news.ft.com/servlet/ContentServer?pagename=FT.com/StoryFT/FullStory&c=StoryFT&cid=1054966408385

"If you want on or off this Iran ping list, Freepmail me”
4 posted on 06/25/2003 12:26:45 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad)
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To: DoctorZIn
Bob Ney, a Republican congressman for Ohio, yesterday extended an invitation to Iran's parliamentarians to engage in a dialogue with the US Congress.

I think we should contact his office and that of the Republican leadership and let them know what you think of his plan. This is NOT the first time he has done something like this in support of the mullahs.

5 posted on 06/25/2003 12:33:13 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad)
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To: DoctorZIn
So this congressman is bucking US foreign policy? Don't think that'll get very far. As a matter of fact, I believe there's a law against that.
6 posted on 06/25/2003 12:34:06 AM PDT by McGavin999
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To: JulieRNR21; Ernest_at_the_Beach; Pan_Yans Wife; RobFromGa; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; ...
Two more journalists detained in current wave of arrests
Reporters sans frontières
June 24, 2003

PARIS - The arrests of freelance journalist Amir Teirani on 16 June and Mohamed Reza Bouzeri, a journalist with Golestan-e-Iran, on 18 June - both for allegedly inciting students to demonstrate - has brought to the number of journalists detained since 14 June to at least eight.

They also brought the total of journalists held in Iran to at least 16, making it the biggest prison for journalists in the Middle East. Reporters Without Borders called for the immediate release of all them.

Meanwhile, an appeal court on 17 June upheld a prison sentence passed in April on journalist Ali-Reza Jabari, a contributor to several independent newspapers including Adineh, but reduced the term from four to three years. As well as a prison term, Jabari had been sentenced on 19 April to 253 lashes and a fine of 6 million rials (about 1,000 euros).

The official charge against Jabari was "consuming and distributing alcoholic drinks, adultery and immoral acts" although his real offence was to belong to a writers' association and contribute articles to news websites based abroad.

Following expressions of concern by Reporters Without Borders about the location of journalists detained in the past 10 days, Tehran state prosecutor Said Mortazavi reported that Teirani and Taghi Rahmani, a journalist with the weekly Omid-e-Zangan, Reza Alijani, editor of the monthly Iran-e-Farda and winner of the Reporters Without Borders - France Foundation press freedom prize in 2001, and Hoda Saber, a member of Iran-e-Farda's senior staff were being held in Evine prison in Tehran.

The daughter of Ensafali Hedayat, a journaliste with Salam arrested on 16 June in Tabriz university in the north of the country, learned that he was detained in Tabriz's main prison. He was beaten by police at the time of his arrest.

Prosecutor Mortazavi also told the family of journalist Amin Bozorgian, which had received no word of him since his arrest on 15 June, that he was officially detained. The prosecutor threatened the families of detained journalists (including the wives of Rahmani and Alijani) for saying they had been detained illegally.

Mohsen Sazgara, the editor of the website Alliran and the (closed) reformist daily Jameh, has been on hunger strike since his arrest on 15 June. He has a heart ailment and the state of his health is a matter of concern. His wife has also started a hunger strike to protest against her husband's imprisonment.

All of these journalist are alleged to have incited students to revolt. Many anti-government protests have been staged around the main university campus in Tehran and other major cities since 10 June, in the course of which police and militiamen in civilian dress have targeted journalists. The regime has also put heavy pressure on the ISNA and ILNA news agencies, which have been covering these events closely.

The relatives of Abbas Abdi, a journalist with Salam who has been imprisoned since 4 November 2002, have meanwhile voiced concern about his health. Abdi, who is being held in a separate cell and who was in poor health at the time of their last prison visit, told them he nonetheless planned to go on hunger strike if he was not granted a few days of release, as required by the Iranian law.

http://www.iran-daneshjoo.org/cgi-bin/smccdinews/viewnews.cgi?category=5&id=1056513237

"If you want on or off this Iran ping list, Freepmail me”
7 posted on 06/25/2003 12:54:02 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad)
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To: DoctorZIn
Let's protest by mass Freeoing the French Foreign Ministry.

PING!
8 posted on 06/25/2003 1:32:59 AM PDT by Big Bad Bob (FREE IRAN, FREE THE PEOPLE)
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To: DoctorZIn
Good morning
& thank you for the pings
9 posted on 06/25/2003 4:08:42 AM PDT by firewalk
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To: DoctorZIn
Good morning sir! Thanks for all of your posts.
10 posted on 06/25/2003 5:23:57 AM PDT by Constitution Day
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To: *southasia_list
http://www.freerepublic.com/perl/bump-list
11 posted on 06/25/2003 5:24:09 AM PDT by Free the USA
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To: DoctorZIn
Bush's ugly choices in Iran

By Sol Sanders
SPECIAL TO WORLD TRIBUNE.COM

June 24, 2003
The Iraq kick-the-can search for WMD notwithstanding, evidence for another nuclear threat to world peace is growing in Iran. Only part of the problem is Iran building nukes under the pretence of an oil rich economy needing nuclear power while rejecting UN International Atomic Energy monitoring. But Tehran has moved to enrichment after apparently discovering domestic uranium. The only question appears to be “how long?” Given repeated failures to appreciate the speed of such developments in Iraq and North Korea, alarm is justified.

For all of this is in the hands of a regime that has for more than two decades declared the U.S. its enemy, plotted the deaths of American military in Lebanon and Saudi Arabia, and through its surrogate, Hisb’allah, is a major obstacle to settlement in Israel-Palestine. Furthermore, Persia’s traditional cultural role from the Black Sea to China plays a critical regional role for war or peace [in Afghanistan, for example]. Without a stable, peace-dedicated Tehran regime, there is no hope of stability in the region, nor with its opivotal role in OPEC, in the whole energy-based world economy. [Iran was the principle founder of OPEC].

The growing repugnance of the Iranians for the Mullahs’ obscurantist regime is increasingly clear. A population approaching 70 million [probably now bypassing Egypt and Turkey, its two large Islamic neighbors], more than half of whom are minors, is chaffing at the bit from its antimodernist strictures, its mismanagement of the economy leading to massive unemployment, and the winds of change now sweeping the area. Unlike protests which led to the student massacre of four years ago July 9th, unrest has now spread beyond Tehran and beyond the students to the middle classes in provincial cities.

Yet any revolt faces formidable opposition. The Mullahs in all their false piety have not flinched from using thugs – apparently including foreign mercenaries. In a crunch, the radical elements of a regime which has already cost the lives of thousands of dissidents and inflicted barbarous punishments such as stoning and amputation, may not hesitate at more repression.

However, one of the critical factors militating toward the end of the regime is the presence of 2.6 million Iranians in a Diaspora since the Islamic revolution of 1979 – more than a million and a half in the U.S.. Not the impoverished refugees of other crises areas, they are talented, entrepreneurial and independent. Their relatively elaborate TV-radio propaganda offensive from California is critical in the war for the loyalty of the Iranian masses.

But the revolt still remains inchoate. It is conflicted with small but armed and fanatical opposition groups –evidenced by their activities in Iraq and France – in the hands of anti-democratic elements, even combinations of radical Islamicists and secularists under cult figures. No dominant charismatic figure has yet emerged inside Iran or on the outside. The former Shah’s son, perhaps a gifted young man, is not likely to be acceptable to a population which has been propagandized intensively against the Old Regime.

That means, as Assad Homanyoun, whose Washington-based Azadegan Foundation, one of many expatriate organizations working toward regime change, points out, overthrow has to come from the military.

And as the current about-face in U.S. policy in Iraq demonstrates, in the chaotic aftermath of these Mideast tyrannies, unless the organized military – whatever its failings – is not used, it becomes another impediment to progress toward a democratic regime. Throughout the long Persian history regimes have changed only through military coups [or neutralization at U.S. behest alas! during the overthrow of the Shah].

Reports out of Iran indicate the traditional army – as distinguished from the Islamicists’ militia— is neutral. But it has indicated it will not be used to quell the student protests. Currently a much publicized visit by the Iranian general staff chief to his close brethren in Turkey, is generally billed as a reinforcement of both Turkey and Iran’s opposition to the creation/growth of Kurd irredentist forces in Iraq. [Ironically, Turkey’s refusal to permit transit of U.S. forces during the war has led force majeure to increased American reliance on the organized northern Iraq Kudish locals, much to the chagrin of both Tehran and Ankara.] But there must also be more than a little exchange on the problem of Islamic radicals between Turkey’s militantly secular soldiers and the Iranian.

Should Washington, as events spin out of control in Tehran, lean toward acquiescing in military takeover, there will be great opposition not only from the human rights lobbyists. Our cantankerous European Union allies, again hypocritically based on their “democratic” aspirations but more on their commercial interests, call for a hoped for transition among the so-called regime moderates. Such a diplomatic conflict, as Engles would have had it, would be an Iraq redux although probably this time outside the UN, and more a farce than a drama.

Sol W. Sanders, (solsanders@comcast.net), is an Asian specialist with more than 25 years in the region, and a former correspondent for Business Week, U.S. News & World Report and United Press International. He writes weekly for World Tribune.com.

http://www.worldtribune.com/worldtribune/back_neil_2.html



12 posted on 06/25/2003 8:01:29 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad)
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To: DoctorZIn
Blair Comments Outrage Iran

June 25, 2003
BBC News
Jim Muir

The British Ambassador in Tehran, Richard Dalton, has been called in by the Iranian foreign ministry to receive a verbal protest over remarks made in the UK Parliament yesterday by Prime Minister Tony Blair.

Mr Blair said that the recent anti-regime demonstrations in Iran deserved Britain's support.

Iranian officials have condemned the remarks as an interference in Iran's internal affairs and they have accused Mr Blair of deceiving his own public opinion over the war in neighbouring Iraq.

In a meeting which British embassy sources describe as "uncomfortable", Mr Dalton was told by Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Ali Ahani that Prime Minister Blair's remarks were out of line with Britain's declared policy of non-interference in Iran's internal affairs.

They were also inconsistent, he was told, with its interest in strengthening relations between the two countries.

The Iranian side was apparently concerned that Mr Blair's remarks amounted to a shift in British policy towards Iran.

Mr Dalton sought to reassure them on that point.

Delicate time

He insisted that Britain remained committed to a policy of preserving and developing ties with Iran, holding dialogue on points of difference while pursuing co-operation in fields of mutual interest such as the war on narcotics.

He also said London believed that Iranians alone were responsible for their country's future.

British diplomats regard the affair as quite a serious jolt to relations between London and Tehran, which are always delicate.

It comes at a particularly sensitive moment when the possibility of another visit here by Foreign Secretary Jack Straw is under active discussion.

In separate remarks, the Iranian foreign ministry spokesman described Mr Blair's remarks as irresponsible and damaging to relations.

He broadened the counter-attack, accusing the British prime minister of trying to divert attention from his responsibility to account for the way he had deceived his own public opinion over the reasons for the war on Iraq and the continuing occupation by American and British forces.

The diplomatic tiff between Britain and Iran has made front-page headlines in some of the Iranian newspapers, with much speculation about a shift in British policy to bring it more into line with Washington's hostile attitude to Tehran.

That is a conclusion that the British embassy here is clearly at pains to counter.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/3019316.stm
13 posted on 06/25/2003 10:15:56 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad)
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To: DoctorZIn
US Democrats become active in order to save the Islamic regime

June 25, 2003 | SMCCDI (INformation Service)
Posted on 06/25/2003 12:20 PM PDT by Semper Paratus

The US Democrats have become active, once again, in order to save the Islamic republic regime by organizing debates on the need to "Engage Iran". Their move takes place at a time that Iranians have shown their real aspiration intending to overthrown the Islamic republic regime and are welcoming the notion of "International Help for Regime Change".

Several famous Democrat figures, such as, Bob Ney and Lee Hamilton, held a public meeting, yesterday, in the Capitol during which, while they had, finally, to acknowledge the existence of riots in Iran: They tried to reduce of their importances by making beleive that these sacrifices will not give to a Regime Change.

It's to to note that these Democrats are following the same wrong policy used during the "Clinton era" which forced the former US Secretary, Madlene Albright, to even offer apologies to the Islamic republic regime by hoping to see "changes".

The policy and the "offer apology meeting" was promoted by the mediaticlly collapsed pro-regime Lobby group "American Iranian Council" (AIC) headed by the notorious Hooshang Amir Ahmadi. The same controversial policy is being promoted, at this time, by the self called "National Iranian American Council" (NIAC) supposedly headed by a so-called Titra Parsi who's one of the assistant of Congressman Bob Ney.

Titra Parsi was before the collapse of the AIC one of its official board members.

The NIAC has pushed the Art of Demagogy to even publish, recently, statistics intending to back some of its claims. The organization has posted a news relative on collecting answers from Iranians residing in the US on how the US policy must be adopted in reference to Iran.

It's to note that this organization is rejected by the majority of Iranians residing in the US due to their knoweldge of its agenda and that less than 0.0001% of them have participated in the so-aclled survey.

Over a million and half Iranians are living in the US and most of them have access to Internet or the Los Angeles Iranian based Radio and TVs. Most of them are denouncing publicly the NIAC and anyone intending to use their name in order to buy time for the regime.

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/935458/posts

NOTE: The students got one fact wrong. Congressman Bob Ney is not a democrat, but a republican! We need to make sure the republican leadership in congress stops him. He is NOT a friend of the Student Protest Movement.
14 posted on 06/25/2003 12:39:20 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad)
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To: DoctorZIn
BTTT
15 posted on 06/25/2003 12:40:31 PM PDT by Constitution Day
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To: JulieRNR21; Ernest_at_the_Beach; Pan_Yans Wife; RobFromGa; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; ...
10 Million Basijis Prepared to Defend Iran: Says Islamic Revolution Guard Corps Commander

6.26.2003 | Tehran Times
Posted on 06/25/2003 12:56 PM PDT by DoctorZIn

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/935478/posts?page=1

Does Baghdad Bob have a cousin in Tehran?...

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

16 posted on 06/25/2003 1:02:49 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad)
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To: DoctorZIn
Several famous Democrat figures, such as, Bob Ney

Bob Ney is a Republican, sadly.

17 posted on 06/25/2003 2:05:22 PM PDT by Texas_Dawg ("Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself.")
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To: DoctorZIn

18 posted on 06/25/2003 2:54:04 PM PDT by Grampa Dave (Evil Old White Devil Californian Grampa for big Al Sharpton and Nader in primaries!)
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran's Khatami Urged to Take Stand Over Arrests

June 25, 2003
Reuters
Paul Hughes

TEHRAN -- Reformist Iranian lawmakers are urging President Mohammad Khatami to take a firm stand over an apparent mass round-up of students following this month's protests against clerical rule in the Islamic Republic.

Student leaders and legislators have said scores of students were arrested in cities across the country in recent days by plainclothes security officials. The whereabouts of many of those detained is still unknown, they say.

While defending people's right to protest, pro-reform Khatami -- whom protesters called on to resign during the recent demonstrations -- has said little about the recent arrests.

When asked to comment on Wednesday, he told reporters: "In this country criticism should be free, the right of protest should be free. But everything should be in the framework of the law." He did not make clear whether his reference to the law applied to the actions of the protesters or the security forces.

MPs said Khatami, whose popularity has slumped in recent years due to the slow pace of reform in Iran, had a duty to live up to his 1997 and 2001 election pledges to bring greater democracy, justice and social freedoms.

"What we are expecting from Khatami is to fulfil his promises and to fulfil the slogans which drew people to the ballot boxes," parliamentarian Nouredin Pirmoazen told Reuters.

Khatami's failure to overcome resistance to change from conservatives who occupy powerful unelected posts in Iran's complex political structure has led to mounting disillusionment among Iranians, 70 percent of whom are under the age of 30.

JUST KILLING TIME

Critics say the mild-mannered cleric's philosophical style is to soft for the tough world of Iranian politics.

"Since Khatami is not a politician and has no abilities in this field...(he) will not bring any changes at the present time or in the future. He is just killing time," said one caller to the reformist Etemad newspaper's open forum column.

Some 25 MPs from the reformist-dominated parliament wrote a letter to Khatami on Tuesday asking him to attend a closed-door meeting to discuss the recent arrests.

"We are asking the president to announce his stance more clearly than before ... merely expressing regret will not solve anything," Tehran MP Ali Akbar Mousavi Khoini was quoted as saying in the reformist Tosea newspaper on Wednesday.

Diplomats say the recent arrests appear to be aimed at preventing further unrest. It is feared more will erupt around the July 9 anniversary of a violent 1999 attack on a Tehran University dormitory by hardline vigilantes fiercely loyal to Iran's conservative clerical establishment.

Politicians said it was not clear which security organisation had carried out the students' arrests. Intelligence ministry and police officials have said they only have a handful of students in their custody.

"As President Khatami has said, a government has been formed inside the government, and some organisations are arresting citizens," Hadi Qabel, head of the reformist Participation Front party in the city of Qom told Tosea.

One 53-year-old woman, who asked not to be named, told Reuters she had been unable to get any information about the whereabouts of her son, a student who was arrested during the first days of the protests about two weeks ago.

The son of at least one reformist MP has also been detained and several MPs complained they had received death threats since releasing a highly critical letter to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei last month signed by 135 MPs.

http://www.reuters.co.uk/newsPackageArticle.jhtml?type=worldNews&storyID=324962

Note: Its highly unlikely he will do a thing. -- DoctorZin

19 posted on 06/25/2003 4:33:37 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad)
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To: DoctorZIn
Ten million huh? Right, I believe that. Even if they had that number, there are still more of the people than there are fanatics. When the people figure out that they, in their numbers, are far stronger than their opponents the game will be over. I don't know what's taking them so long to figure it out.
20 posted on 06/25/2003 4:56:42 PM PDT by McGavin999
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To: DoctorZIn
Militants beat prisoners relatives in Iran
The Express Chronicle
By Prima News Agency

IRAN. 23rd June militants of the Iranian regime's voluntary militia force beat up the relatives of the protesters arrested during the demonstrations on the streets of Teheran in the last 13 days. They were attacked by the militia when members of the arrested protesters families gathered outside the entrance to the Teheran prison of Evin.

According to Student Movement Co-ordination Committee for Democracy in Iran, several people bled after the beatings.

Similar incident took place on Zanjan Street outside the police HQ, where the arrested were brought. 23rd June Iranian authorities announced that any demonstrations to mark the anniversary of student protests of 9th July 1999 are banned. On the night of 24th June, in the Amir Abad district of Teheran and also in the east of the city, there were several odd protests where the demonstrators shouted anti-government slogans and then dispersed without any clashes with the authorities.

http://www.prima-news.ru/eng/news/news/2003/6/25/25089.html
21 posted on 06/25/2003 5:05:18 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad)
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To: DoctorZIn
I thought you might find this interesting....

BEN LADEN WAS IN IRAN, PREPARING NEW TERRORIST OPERATIONS

Iran Press Service ^ | 6.25.2003 | Ahmad Ra’fat
Posted on 06/25/2003 5:26 PM PDT by DoctorZIn

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/935595/posts


22 posted on 06/25/2003 5:29:09 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad)
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To: DoctorZIn
Thanks, Dr.ZIn. It really is nice to have all of this on one thread.

BTTT!

23 posted on 06/25/2003 7:53:45 PM PDT by dixiechick2000 ( My mind not only wanders, it sometimes leaves completely.)
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To: dixiechick2000
Your welcome.
24 posted on 06/25/2003 7:55:48 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad)
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To: DoctorZIn
Wondered where you were. Thanks again for your updates.
25 posted on 06/25/2003 9:06:35 PM PDT by nuconvert
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To: JulieRNR21; Ernest_at_the_Beach; Pan_Yans Wife; RobFromGa; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; ...
Iranian Exiles Sow Change Via Satellite
Islamic Government's Foes Tap TV, Web and Phones to Encourage Protests (Excerpted article)

By Michael Dobbs
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, June 26, 2003; Page A01

LOS ANGELES -- "Good morning, Iran," says Zia Atabay, a former Iranian pop star who fled Iran after the 1979 Islamic revolution. "And good evening, America."

It is 9 a.m. in Tehran, 9 p.m. in Los Angeles. The previous evening, Iranian demonstrators roamed the streets of Tehran, shouting, "Down with the mullahs." From a makeshift television studio halfway around the world, Atabay is urging people to join the protests -- and news reports from Iran suggest the appeal is striking a chord.

"If you don't act now, the regime will be around for a long time," he shouts into the television camera, as a telephone console on his desk flickers with calls from Iran. "So join with the students to bring the regime down. If you believe in freedom and democracy, everyone must be together."

A quarter-century after an exiled Iranian ayatollah named Ruhollah Khomeini undermined the shah of Iran by flooding the country with audiotapes of his fiery sermons, a new generation of Iranian exiles is seeking to emulate his feat. Their goal is to use modern-day communications technology -- radio stations, the Internet, cell phones, and, above all, satellite television -- to bring down Khomeini's successors....

The rebellion on the streets of Tehran and other Iranian cities comes at a time when the Bush administration has stepped up its criticism of the country's Islamic rulers for developing nuclear weapons and providing shelter to members of the al Qaeda terrorist network. While U.S. officials have voiced strong rhetorical support for the aspirations of the Iranian democracy movement, they deny exercising any influence over the Los Angeles-based television and radio stations, and have declined to support congressional attempts to fund their operations.

While some administration officials, particularly in the Pentagon, have argued in favor of a more active policy of undermining the Tehran government, others are skeptical of the exile groups' ability to trigger a revolution back home. They point out that the exiles lack a charismatic leader. Their most prominent spokesman is Reza Pahlavi, the son of the former shah, who lives in Falls Church. In the eyes of many Iranians, however, Pahlavi is tainted by the excesses of his father's rule.

None of the criticism fazes Atabay, who has sunk hundreds of thousands of dollars from his wife's plastic surgery business into National Iranian TV (NITV), and is described by friends as an Iranian mixture of Pat Boone and Jerry Springer. He has barely slept for the past two weeks, since Iranian students began staging nightly demonstrations in Tehran and other cities to demand democracy and an end to Islamic rule. His dream, he said, is to become head of Iranian state television after the fall of the mullahs.

"If the Iranian regime falls, I will have a good business," he laughed. "But if it doesn't fall in the next five months, I will go bankrupt."

According to western news reports from Tehran, the protests snowballed as the result of blanket coverage on NITV and other satellite stations. Using cell phones and telephone credit cards distributed by exiled opposition groups, demonstrators called the Los Angeles-based stations to describe the protests and appeal to their fellow Iranians to join them in the streets. The protesters have used the satellite stations to circumvent a news blackout on their activities in Iran....

One measure of the influence of the Los Angeles-based TV and radio stations has been the angry reaction of the Iranian government. Former Iranian president Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani used one of his Friday prayer sermons to urge Iranians "not to be trapped by the evil television networks that Americans have established."

While the mullahs may be convinced that the satellite stations are tools of the CIA, the broadcasters insist that they have not received a penny from the U.S. government. Sen. Sam Brownback (R-Kan.) has proposed legislation that would channel as much as $50 million to democracy activities in Iran, including TV and radio stations. But leaders of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee oppose the amendment, and few observers expect it to pass this year.

"We need the money desperately, but until now it's just been talk and empty promises," said Fariborz Abbassi, founder of Azadi Television.

With names such as Pars, Channel One and Tapesh, the Los Angeles-based stations are shoestring operations that run as much on enthusiasm as large injections of cash. The communications revolution has made it possible to set up and run a satellite television station, dedicated to overthrowing a foreign government, for relatively small sums.

According to Atabay, the monthly budget for NITV, one of the better-funded stations, is around $140,000: $45,000 for satellite fees, $20,000 for office and studio rental, $40,000 for salaries, and the remainder for incidental expenses, such as cell phone costs. His revenue includes $25,000 in subscriptions from American viewers (Iranians with a satellite dish receive the service free), $27,000 from advertising, and $30,000 from commissions on sales of Iranian carpets.

That leaves a monthly shortfall of around $60,000, which Atabay either has to pay with his own money or raise from rich Iranian Americans eager to support the anti-Islamic street uprising back home.

Fomenting revolution in Iran was the last thing on Atabay's mind when he began NITV in March 2000 as a cultural station aimed at the Iranian American Diaspora. He only discovered six months later that his signal was capable of reaching Iran when a viewer called NITV from the central Iranian city of Isfahan. NITV soon became so popular in Iran -- with news shows, chat programs and "Saturday Night Live"-like spoofs of Iranian mullahs -- that the Iranian authorities began intermittently jamming the signal.

Back in Los Angeles, the station spawned a host of imitators eager to cater to the estimated 7 million Iranians with satellite dishes. (Since many dish owners share their signal with neighbors, the perspective audience for the satellite programs is several times larger.) The stations range in focus from hard-line anti-mullah to pop music.

"We are all part of the movement, each in his own way," said Alireza Amirghassemi, founder of TV Tapesh, which treats its viewers to a heavy diet of singers Shakira and Jennifer Lopez. "When we air a video of a girl with . . . a lot of flesh, we are showing something that is forbidden in Iran."

The most ideological of the stations is Azadi, Persian for "freedom." The son of an Iranian army general, Abbassi has decorated his office with mementos of the former shah, including a large wall tapestry. He describes the shah's son as "Iran's only hope" and broadcasts almost daily interviews with him. He said he has smuggled hundreds of cell phones and thousands of phone cards into Iran, creating a network of supporters around the country.

"You tell me what action you want inside Iran, and I can do it in two hours, with a single phone call," said Abbassi, one of whose favorite phrases is "Money talks."

A recent call-in show on Azadi featured phone interviewers with Iranian demonstrators, urging viewers to get into the streets. "If everyone comes out, the Islamic militants will go away," said a caller from Isfahan. Another caller warned the Iranian government not to use force to break up the demonstrations, "or we will be forced to defend ourselves." The host, a restaurant manager-turned-TV firebrand named Behrooz Souresrafil, called for strikes at gasoline refineries and in the Tehran bazaar.

Such open political incitement is banned at U.S.-funded stations, such as Radio Farda, a 24-hour news and music Persian language station, which went on the air last December. Like Voice of America and Radio Free Europe, the Washington-based Radio Farda is obliged by charter to be factual in its reporting....

© 2003 The Washington Post Company

This is an excerpt of the article for the full text go to..

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A33643-2003Jun25.html?nav=hptop_tb

"If you want on or off this Iran ping list, Freepmail me”
26 posted on 06/25/2003 10:38:18 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad)
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To: DoctorZIn
Less than two weeks to July 9th. Looks like things are bubbling over there. All we can do is pray for their safety and pray that the Persian military remembers their obligation to protect the people.
27 posted on 06/25/2003 11:05:17 PM PDT by McGavin999
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To: McGavin999
A lot of breaking news...
I will be posting the information on tomorrows thread in a few minutes.
I will provide a link to the new thread in a few minutes...

DoctorZin
28 posted on 06/25/2003 11:54:04 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad)
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To: DoctorZIn
This threas is being closed. Join us today's thread for all the breaking news...

Iranian Alert -- DAY 17 -- LIVE THREAD PING LIST

Live Thread Ping List | 6.26.2003 | DoctorZin
Posted on 06/26/2003 12:01 AM PDT by DoctorZIn

Breaking News... The regime plans on executing many of the jailed protesters on Friday, it is being reported. Join us to learn all the news and what you can do to help the people of Iran battle its regime.

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/935805/posts?page=2
29 posted on 06/26/2003 12:09:48 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad)
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