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Iranian Alert -- October 3, 2003 -- IRAN LIVE THREAD PING LIST
The Iranian Student Movement Up To The Minute Reports ^ | 10.3.2003 | DoctorZin

Posted on 10/03/2003 12:01:48 AM PDT by DoctorZIn

The regime is working hard to keep the news about the protest movment in Iran from being reported.

From jamming satellite broadcasts, to prohibiting news reporters from covering any demonstrations to shutting down all cell phones and even hiring foreign security to control the population, the regime is doing everything in its power to keep the popular movement from expressing its demand for an end of the regime.

These efforts by the regime, while successful in the short term, do not resolve the fundamental reasons why this regime is crumbling from within.

Iran is a country ready for a regime change. 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.

Please continue to join us here, post your news stories and comments to this thread.

Thanks for all the help.

DoctorZin


TOPICS: Extended News; Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: iaea; iran; iranianalert; protests; studentmovement; studentprotest
Discover all the news since the protests began on June 10th, go to:

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

1 posted on 10/03/2003 12:01:48 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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2 posted on 10/03/2003 12:03:39 AM PDT by Support Free Republic (Your support keeps Free Republic going strong!)
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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

Live Thread Ping List | DoctorZin

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

3 posted on 10/03/2003 12:04:03 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
Duel for Leadership of Shiite Muslims

Arab News - By Amir Taheri
Oct 3, 2003

Ever since the fall of Saddam Hussein, many people had expected it to happen: a theological duel between Najaf, in central Iraq, and Qom, south of Tehran, over the leadership of the world’s Shiite Muslims.

The first moves in the duel have come from Grand Ayatollah Ali-Muhammad Sistani in Najaf and Ayatollah Nasser Makarem Shirazi in Qom. The issue that triggered it is one connected with lifestyle: Does Islam permit smoking? The question was put to the two clerics by the Islamic Students Association, a pro-reform movement based in Tehran.

The answers given by the two clerics show them to be poles apart in their understanding of theology and the role it plays in a modern Muslim society.

Sistani is the primus inter pares of Iraqi Shiite theologians. Having lived under house arrest through much of Saddam’s rule, and thus prevented from communicating with Shiites outside Iraq, Sistani was unable to use his position to project his vision of Shiism. With Saddam gone, he is now free to help rebuild Najaf as a center of “Ijtihad”. Sistani was a pupil of the late Grand Ayatollah Abol-Qassem Khoi, regarded by many as the greatest of Shiite theologians of the last century. Khoi preached a version of Islam that emphasizes personal piety as opposed to public militancy. He also insisted that clerics should not seek political power but act as arbiters between state and society.

Shirazi is one of six mullahs appointed by Iran’s “Supreme Guide” Ali Khamenei as a collective “source of emulation” (Marja’a al-Taqlid).

The rival fatwas on reveal not only two schools of “Ijtihad” but two visions of the role of religion in society.

Shirazi is categorical in declaring that smoking tobacco in any form and under any circumstances and by anyone is a sin. He uses the term “haram” (forbidden). Shirazi bases his position on verse 195 of the surah Al-Baqara in the Qur’an which admonishes Muslims not to lead themselves to destruction. The verse, however, has hitherto been interpreted as a command to believers not to take suicidal action in war.

Sistani’s fatwa says that smoking is not forbidden as such but anyone who knows that it is harmful to his or her health should refrain from doing so. He regards the issue of smoking as one to be settled by human reason and individual choice, not through anathema and interdict. In doing so, Sistani shows that in most issues concerning human existence, “reason” must prevail over dogma. The “ texts” should be used for graver issues that fall beyond fallible human reasoning.

The two schools of “Ijtihad” could lead to two different forms of social and political organization. Shirazi uses words such as “must” and “obligatory”. This means that the clergy should exercise authority over society, and that their edicts should leave no room for individual choice and judgment. That position is based on the claim that a majority of the believers are incapable of knowing right from wrong and need the guidance of the clergy. Shirazi’s ideal society is ultimately Platonic: The government of the elite over the ignorant populace. Its Khomeinist version is “wilayt al-faqih”.

Sistani uses such words as “recommended” or “preferable”. He casts the clergy into the role of “advisors” and “ethical counselors” of society. The ultimate decision is made by the individual on the basis of reason, which is the most precious gift from God to man.

Sistani’s vision is ultimately Aristotelian. His ideal society is one in which rulers are ordinary pious citizens. Because the concept of an intercessor is alien to Islam, Sistani rejects the idea that an individual could escape the consequences of his deeds by simply following the clergy.

There are other differences between the two schools. For Shirazi every issue under the sun is theological. Sistani, however, allows for public and private spaces in which theology would intervene by invitation only, and then as one voice among many. In this view science, politics, literature, art, and culture in general, are independent entities not mere branches of theology.

The re-emergence of Najaf as a center of “Ijtihad” is the best news for Shiism in more than half a century. Competition between Najaf and Qom could enrich Shiite theology and benefit both centers. This is one duel that should be welcome, because it is one of ideas.

http://www.daneshjoo.org/generalnews/article/publish/article_2689.shtml
4 posted on 10/03/2003 12:05:12 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; McGavin999; Hinoki Cypress; ...
Duel for Leadership of Shiite Muslims

Arab News - By Amir Taheri
Oct 3, 2003

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/994288/posts?page=4#4
5 posted on 10/03/2003 12:06:11 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran playing with fire

Straits Times - Editorial
Oct 3, 2003

Officials from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) began talks in Teheran yesterday against a worrying backdrop: Iran's nuclear aims are drawing the country into an international confrontation which it can ill-afford. Teheran's policy is that it will not compromise on its right to have nuclear technology or to conduct uranium enrichment. That is fair enough, but it is not good enough. This truth has been underlined by IAEA chief Mohamed El Baradei, who has warned that Iran must cooperate fully with his inspectors or face accusations that it is secretly building a nuclear weapons capability. According to the IAEA, traces of weapons-grade enriched uranium were found in Iran; Teheran argues that the equipment was contaminated before being purchased - without saying where the imported parts came from. This attitude hardly creates trust. The point, then, is not the production of electricity - the stated goal of Iran's nuclear programme - but Teheran's ability to convince the nuclear watchdog that it is not pursuing a nuclear weapons agenda. In an indication of the urgency which it attaches to the issue, the IAEA has given Teheran until Oct 31 to answer all its questions. But instead of providing proof of its peaceful intentions, Iran appears to be set on a collision course with the agency. Angered by the IAEA asking it to halt uranium enrichment, Iran says that it will give inspectors only limited access to nuclear sites. That approach could see the Islamic republic's case being taken to the United Nations Security Council. It could face economic and diplomatic sanctions. Surely, not even plentiful electricity is worth that price.

The price grows higher when factored into the dispute is the fact that behind the threat of sanctions lies the strength of the United States, which accuses Iran of enriching uranium to make nuclear weapons. The European Union, too, wants it to stop activities which could produce fissile material. Unless Teheran can convince the IAEA, it will continue to feel the heat from Washington, which has branded it part of an 'axis of evil'. It took a war and a regime change for Iraq, another member of that axis, to free itself of the designation; the third member, North Korea, has embarked on a course that could result in a serious confrontation with its neighbours and the US. The stakes are high for Iran. If it has nothing to hide, it should be able to prove that it has nothing to hide by providing the answers which the IAEA seeks. Playing games with the inspectors is not only offensive but also dangerous. The point is not lost on observers that, should Iran go nuclear, the pressure on Washington to act would not be slight, Iran being, as well, an avowed enemy of Israel and a country which the US has accused of sponsoring international terrorism. Are Iranians willing to face the consequences of going nuclear?

The problem is that the nuclear issue has become a show of strength, not only between Iran and the rest of the world, but also within the country itself. It has come in handy to hardliners, who believe that Teheran must not be swayed by international pressure. For example, the editor of a hardline newspaper wants the country to pull out of the Non-Proliferation Treaty altogether. However, saner counsel in Teheran argues otherwise. That counsel should prevail in the broader area of working with the IAEA. Before travelling to Teheran, Mr Pierre Goldschmidt, a deputy director-general of the agency, said that he expected to make 'great progress' in his talks. Iran's leaders owe themselves at least that much.

http://www.daneshjoo.org/generalnews/article/publish/article_2691.shtml
6 posted on 10/03/2003 12:07:07 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
Canada's Salman Rushdie

By Stephen Brown
FrontPageMagazine.com | October 2, 2003

"You will sooner or later pay for your pack of lies."

That was only one of the threats that the author of a controversial new book about Islam, just recently released in Toronto, received via e-mail. Another typical email threat called the writer a "pro-Zionism parasite."

The work that has provoked these threats calls for a thorough reform of Islam in order to bring it into the modern world. And, as vexing as the message is for Islamic fundamentalists, even more horrifying for them is the fact that the Muslim author is a lesbian.

Toronto journalist Irshad Manji, 34, writes in her book, The Trouble With Islam: A Wake-up Call for Honesty and Change, that Muslims need to look at themselves and take responsibility for what ails them and their religion rather than continue to blame the West, Israel and "colonialism."

"Muslims have been bludgeoning each other's freedoms well before European colonialism, well before the state of Israel and well before MTV," she said in an interview before the book's launch. "You can't blame intellectual stagnation or complacency on the White House, the Jews, even blame the House of Saud. We have only ourselves to blame."

Manji is a practicing Muslim. Her family emigrated to Canada after the brutal African dictator, Idi Amin, expelled all non-Africans from Uganda in 1971. Possessing a strong, critical mind, she was kicked out of a madrassa at age fourteen. She said her questioning of life's ways began at a Baptist church baby-sitting service where, at age eight, she received the Most Promising Christian of the Year Award.

In her book, Manji condemns Islamic terrorism, anti-Semitism, fundamentalism, and discrimination against women and homosexuals. In this light, she calls for her book's Muslim readers to update their faith. Representing the views of moderate Muslims, this writer's position is not often heard. For this reason, the author says her work is an attempt to break down what she calls the appalling practice of self-censorship of Muslims and non-Muslims in the West when it comes to critically examining Islam.

Manji's book also details a trip she made to Israel, a country she admires for its freedom, tolerance, intellectual openness and the equality it provides for women. Calling the Israeli press "ferociously free," she writes that she especially enjoyed reading newspaper editorials there.

Manji's visit to the Dome of the Rock mosque best symbolizes her belief that the Islamic Reformation must begin in the West with its great liberal traditions and spread from there. As a woman unaccompanied by a male, Manji was forbidden to enter the mosque, gaining access to Islam's third-holiest shrine only after an Israeli police officer, a non-Muslim Westerner, offered to chaperone her

The Muslim-Canadian has affirmed that she had been developing the ideas for the book for many years, but the 9/11 tragedy gave the project an urgency. She credits Salman Rushdie with motivating her to write it, since he told her that the Islamic reformation would begin with women like her.

Unfortunately, like Rushdie, Manji has also had to invest in extra security measures as insurance to protect her from fanatics. She has installed bullet-proof glass in her house, hired a bodyguard and developed relations with the police. Mainstream Muslim organizations have also not received her book well, accusing her of self-hatred.

Unlike Rushdie, however, Manji told an interviewer that the political Left has disowned her, saying she is no longer one of them. In Rushdie's case, the Left rallied to his cause, supporting his right to free expression and opposing Muslim death threats for his writing The Satanic Verses.

In turn, the Canadian Muslim refusenik says she is appalled by the Left's selectivity when it comes to problems in the Middle East, since they always blame the West.

"I'm stunned by the way the political tradition from which I come has abdicated responsibility for universal human rights," she told the interviewer. "They wax eloquent that Islamic societies have their own form of democracies. But please ask them how these places treat women, how they treat Jews? They love to dissect Israel - but to the exclusion of Saudi Arabia? How can they morally live with themselves?"

Besides the Left, homosexual and Canadian women's rights organizations have also been conspicuously and hypocritically silent concerning the threats made against one of their lesbian sisters, who once hosted a gay television show.

In another interview, the Muslim author calls on non-Muslims to constantly exercise their freedoms, support the reformation of Islam and not to be cowed by fear of being called racist.

"Bin-Laden is counting on this, on non-Muslims being cowed by fear of being called racist," she says. "It's as if they feel they are doing us a favor by refusing to have faith in us Muslims to push for reform, as someone called it, the soft racism of low expectations."

Manji also told an interviewer she may leave Islam if it does not reform itself. But the positive response to her book by other Muslims has served to encourage her.

'The West has saved my faith in my faith," she affirms. "Now it is up to Islam to redeem itself."

Stephen Brown is a journalist based in Toronto. He has an M.A. in Russian and Eastern European Studies. Email him at alsolzh@hotmail.com.

http://frontpagemag.com/Articles/ReadArticle.asp?ID=10113
7 posted on 10/03/2003 12:09:13 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; McGavin999; Hinoki Cypress; ...
Canada's Salman Rushdie

By Stephen Brown
FrontPageMagazine.com | October 2, 2003

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/994288/posts?page=7#7
8 posted on 10/03/2003 12:09:47 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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Comment #9 Removed by Moderator

To: Ragtime Cowgirl
ping
10 posted on 10/03/2003 4:30:16 AM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: AdmSmith
IRANIAN AGENTS ENTERING IRAQ DISGUISED AS PILGRIMS.

Hundreds of Iranian agents have infiltrated Iraq disguised as pilgrims, according to a 28 September report by the London-based "Sunday Telegraph." The agents were dispatched at the order of the radical clergy, who do not want to see a stable and unified Iraq, according to Iraqi political leaders. An Iranian opposition group called the National Council of Resistance in Iran (NCRI) told the weekly that some translators employed by the U.S.-led administration in Iraq are working for the Iranian government and says it has knowledge of Iranian intelligence agents working in Iraq, particularly in the holy cities of Al-Najaf and Karbala, which are frequented by Iranian pilgrims. "The Iranian agents have melted into the population and are just waiting until the moment is right," one NCRI official said. Iran has reportedly also sent agents across its vast borders with Iraq to recruit sympathizers for its spy networks. One Iraqi exile told the "Sunday Telegraph" that a number of Iranian Revolutionary Guard agents deployed to Al-Najaf were working within the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI). SCIRI was based in Iran for over 20 years and funded by the Iranian government. U.S. officials have long-accused Iran of attempting to interfere in Iraqi politics since the downfall of the Hussein regime. (Kathleen Ridolfo)

source: RFE/RL IRAQ REPORT Vol. 6, No. 41, 3 October 2003
11 posted on 10/03/2003 6:11:48 AM PDT by AdmSmith
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To: AdmSmith
thanx
12 posted on 10/03/2003 6:42:06 AM PDT by nuconvert ( Stop thinking about it and do it.)
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To: DoctorZIn
Nuclear Pressure on Iran Is a Scandal -Rafsanjani

Fri October 3, 2003 08:28 AM ET

TEHRAN (Reuters) - An influential former Iranian president called international pressure on Iran's atomic program a scandal on Friday but described terms under which the country would agree to snap nuclear inspections.
Under intense U.S. pressure, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) set an October 31 deadline for Iran to prove it is not seeking atomic weapons. Iran has always denied the charge.

"The hypocritical policy of the Americans and Westerners has no justification. This is a scandal," Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani told worshippers at Friday prayers at Tehran University in remarks broadcast live on state media.

He said the Islamic Republic was willing to sign up to snap inspections but only if it were granted the same terms he insisted the United States was demanding for itself.

The United States has signed, but not yet ratified, the so-called Additional Protocol to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty that would permit snap inspections of nuclear sites.

"Our conditions...are the same as those the Americans want," said Rafsanjani, who heads the Expediency Council, a powerful body that arbitrates between the predominantly reformist parliament and Iran's hardline watchdog.

Inspections should not infringe on domestic security or religious sensibilities nor open a path for inspectors to intrude on "secrets" unrelated to the nuclear program, he said.

Iranian conservatives view inspections as tantamount to allowing spies into the country.

The cleric, a top adviser to Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, added the IAEA would have to stand by its half of the bargain which Iran has argued is to offer technological assistance as a reward for putting pen to paper.

However, signing the Additional Protocol is no longer enough to halt the pressure from an increasingly united international front.

The IAEA's resolution has demanded not only "unrestricted access" for IAEA inspectors but also a suspension of uranium enrichment. Enriched uranium can be used as fuel in power plants, or as bomb material if highly enriched.

Rafsanjani was the latest in a string of Iranian politicians to say Iran was willing to co-operate with inspectors under terms that safeguard sovereignty.

But the suspension of uranium enrichment is now the thornier issue and Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi has said Iran would sign the Additional Protocol as long as it were allowed to continue its enrichment program.

Nuclear inspectors arrived in Iran on Thursday.

Iran's reformist President Mohammad Khatami was quoted by the students' news agency on Thursday as saying the IAEA resolution was inappropriate but Iran would cooperate.

http://reuters.com/newsArticle.jhtml?type=worldNews&storyID=3553407
13 posted on 10/03/2003 8:19:33 AM PDT by F14 Pilot
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To: DoctorZIn
Iranian Hacking Attempt to Electric Corporation Foiled

October 03, 2003
Ha'aretz
Galit Yamini

Iranian hackers have attempted to break into the Israel Electric Corporation's computers and disrupt the power supply in Israel several times in recent months, Haaretz has learned.

The Iranians, some of whom may be university students, tried to damage the computer infrastructures operating Israel's power stations. They sent viruses and attempted to overload the servers in what is known as a "denial of service" attack.

The Israel Electric Corp. managed to identify the hacking attempts and foiled them without any damage to the power systems.

The hacking findings were transferred to the Shin Bet's information security agency to prevent any harm to computer systems of critical infrastructures in Israel, especially communication infrastructures. The Shin Bet traced the hackers and virus senders to Iran, some of them to computers in large universities in the country.

Israel Electric Corp. spokesman Dedi Golan said the company is not releasing any information on the matter and that all the information is being transferred to the authorized bodies.

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/pages/ShArt.jhtml?itemNo=346272&contrassID=1&subContrassID=7&sbSubContrassID=0&listSrc=Y
14 posted on 10/03/2003 8:33:10 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
A Near Deal

October 02, 2003
Al-Ahram Weekly
Mohalhel Fakih

A much publicised swap of individuals held by both Israel and Hizbullah brought hope to families on both sides, but Tehran is in two minds about it.

Israel and Hizbullah are poised to resolve one of the thorniest consequences of the Jewish state's 22-year occupation of southern Lebanon, with a prisoner exchange between the two sides expected soon. The swap, and the negotiations leading to it, are not restricted to Israel and Hizbullah, but also involve the Palestinians and Iran. Although Hizbullah has vowed to continue its struggle against Israel's occupation even if the deal succeeds, the swap seems to be highly popular in both Israel and Lebanon.

Israel's expected release from its jails of all 15 Lebanese prisoners, including resistance leaders Mustafa Dirani and Abdul-Karim Obeid, as well as hundreds of Palestinians and other Arabs, would bolster Hizbullah's standing as a powerful player in regional politics. Despite Israel's May 2000 withdrawal from southern Lebanon, the resistance Shi'ite group has pledged it would continue with its military struggle against Israel until the liberation of "every inch of occupied land" -- a reference to the Shebaa Farms, which straddles the Lebanese, Syrian and Israeli borders. Hizbullah captured three Israeli soldiers from the occupied area in October 2000, and weeks later the group said it seized Israeli Reservist Colonel Elhanan Tannenbaum, whom it described as a spy. It wants to exchange them for all the Lebanese, Palestinian, and Arab detainees that Israel is holding, along with two Iranian diplomats who disappeared during Israel's 1982 invasion of Lebanon.

"We will not stop until we regain all our prisoners and the bodies of our beloved martyrs," Sheikh Nabil Qawook, Hizbullah's top official in southern Lebanon, said at the funeral of two fighters whose bodies were handed over to the group by Israel last August, a move that observers believe set the course for the expected swap.

Although the swap would give Hizbullah the chance to pose as an Arab and Muslim liberator, Israel has been under tremendous pressure by the families of the soldiers held by Hizbullah to win their release. As part of the deal, Israel is expected to release Palestinian political prisoners whose fate had been the source of high tension in the occupied Palestinian territories.

"We are following with Hizbullah the issue of a prisoner swap, especially after it was confirmed that a deal would include a number of Palestinian captives and detainees," Hamas Politburo Chairman Khaled Mashaal said in Beirut on Saturday after meeting Hizbullah Secretary-General Sayyid Hassan Nasrallah. The latter held talks with Islamic Jihad officials on Friday.

Israeli Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom said last week that a prisoner exchange deal was "closer than at any time in the past". Meanwhile, Hizbullah's chief said in a newspaper interview that there was "great hope" of a deal taking place "soon". Speaking to the Lebanese daily Al-Safir, Nasrallah said that a deal would include the "greatest number" of Palestinians.

Despite mounting pressure from the family of missing Israeli airman, Ron Arad, to freeze the exchange deal until the fate of their son is revealed, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said in a television interview that prisoners held in Europe could be part of the German-brokered swap. It was not immediately clear whether Sharon was referring to Britain in his remarks, for Germany has also been holding an Iranian convicted of killing four Kurdish dissidents in a Berlin restaurant in 1992. Israeli newspapers reported that several Iranian and Lebanese prisoners held in England and Germany might be exchanged in return for information on Arad. Hizbullah has consistently denied holding Arad, and Nasrallah said that he told a "German mediator" that the group has "no new information" about him. "We told [the mediator] that Hizbullah was prepared to make a solemn pledge to do its utmost to ascertain the fate of the Israeli airman," Nasrallah added.

Meanwhile, tension was running high between Israel and Iran. Iran's Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi accused Israel on Sunday of being behind Britain's arrest in August of former Iranian Ambassador to Argentina Hadi Soleimanpour. The former ambassador was arrested in Britain in connection with the 1994 bombing of a Jewish community centre in Buenos Aires. Israeli press reports said that Soleimanpour could be used as a bargaining chip to obtain information about Arad. But Asefi dismissed this possibility. "The issue of Israeli hostages has nothing to do with Iran," he said. "The Zionist regime's behaviour, saying they are ready to swap [the former ambassador] for some Israelis, completely proves Israel was behind [his arrest]," the Iranian spokesman told reporters in Tehran.

http://weekly.ahram.org.eg/2003/658/re2.htm
15 posted on 10/03/2003 8:34:15 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
Don't be Fooled. The Iraqi Maelstrom Won't Save Iran

October 03, 2003
The Guardian
Jonathan Steele

The cloud is still no larger than George Bush's hand but the storm of concern which the US is orchestrating over Iran is beginning to show uncomfortable similarities with the row over Saddam Hussein's Iraq.

A deadline has been set for Iran to make a full declaration of its nuclear energy programme by the end of this month. There is a demand for international inspectors to go in and examine any site to check for a possible hidden weapons project. Punitive measures are threatened in the case of non-compliance.

Many British and American critics of the last war take comfort in the view that the mess the United States and Britain have got into in post-war Iraq has the benefit that Bush and Blair will not repeat their adventure. Do not be fooled. That, increasingly, looks complacent.

Blair's speech this week showed that he stands by his view that preventing the spread of weapons of mass destruction - if necessary by pre-emptive force - is top of his foreign policy priorities. It was not to be expected that the prime minister would publicly admit he got Iraq wrong. Had he done so, it would be a resigning matter.

But if he had private regrets he might at least have shifted the focus of future British policy to different challenges, like his old rhetoric about world poverty and Africa being a scar on the conscience of humankind. But no. He told the conference that dealing with WMD proliferation headed the agenda for the 21st century. On the BBC's Today programme, he went further by claiming a new success for the war on Iraq. It had helped to get Iran to cooperate with the International Atomic Energy Agency, he said.

For Bush, too, dealing with WMD proliferation is still a high priority in spite of the fiasco of the failed search in Iraq. While North Korea has long been in the frame, the new element is Washington's heavy focus on Iran. Power, it is often said, lies in the ability to set the agenda, and it is remarkable how Washington has managed to switch the world's spotlight to Iran.

The White House is already hinting at using force. Warning Iranians that "development of a nuclear weapon is not in their interests", Bush said in late July that "all options remain on the table". The Los Angleles Times subsequently reported that the CIA has briefed friendly foreign intelligence services on a contingency plan for air and missile strikes on Iranian nuclear installations.

Much of the pressure is coming from the Israeli prime minister, Ariel Sharon, and the same neo-conservative friends of his in Washington who drove the war on Iraq. They recently formed a "Coalition for democracy in Iran", which advocates the overthrow of Iran's regime. It includes well-known hawks like Michael Ledeen and Morris Amitay, a former executive director of the American-Israeli Public Affairs Committee. According to the Washington Post, Sharon recently told Bush that Israel might strike Iran's nuclear facilities, just as it destroyed Saddam Hussein's nuclear reactor in 1981. Whether Sharon only meant his warning as a device to get the US to take the issue seriously and strike first is not clear.

Few would deny that global nuclear proliferation is a serious danger. But as Ken Coates of the Bertrand Russell Peace Foundation points out in a new pamphlet, the Bush administration's talk of "counter-proliferation" is diametrically opposed to the old language of non-proliferation. The original idea was that all nuclear-weapons states would move towards disarmamament, a pledge that the US, Britain and the other three declared bomb-owners made in 1995. Now we have a kind of class distinction. The US continues to develop new forms of nuclear weapons. US-friendly states that refused to sign the non-proliferation treaty (NPT) but have nuclear weapons - like India, Israel and Pakistan - are treated with kid gloves. An NPT-signer such as Iran, against whom Washington bears ancient grudges, is threatened with punishment, and possible force.

Iran is not North Korea. It has no bomb and has consistently said it has no plans for one. It has a nuclear power programme and plans for full-cycle fuel enrichment, but one reason for its drive towards self-sufficiency is that its world trade already suffers from US sanctions, as well as US pressure on Russia and other European states to restrict their own exports to Iran.

All Iranians, not just the regime's supporters, resent international pressure on their country to renounce nuclear power. As one of the first countries in their region which industrialised, they feel they have a "right to technology".

If Iran is secretly trying to develop a bomb, only a few politicians are behind it. "Iran has no military lobby for the bomb like Pakistan, nor a civilian-scientific one like India," according to Shahram Chubin, one of the most clear-headed analysts of Iran's national security policy, now a Swiss citizen. Marginalising Iran, refusing to consult it where its interests are involved, and generally demonising it would strengthen those in Iran who argue that nuclear weapons confer status and influence, he wrote some months ago. The war in Iraq and the stepped-up US campaign against Iran have only reinforced his case.

The time has surely come for some sort of "grand bargain" with Iran, a dialogue in which everything is put on the table, including a lifting of sanctions, the renunciation of the use or threat of force, and the restoration of diplomatic relations with the US in return for nuclear transparency. Sadly, the recent trend has been the other way. On Monday the European Union issued its toughest statement on Iran, echoing Washington's hard line. The French went along happily - no sign of Chiraquian revolt on this one. The EU warned that even if Iran signed the International Atomic Energy Agency's additional protocol to allow for snap visits by outside inspectors, this would only be a "first step" towards "restoring international trust".

In the case of Iraq, the Clinton administration and Britain made a serious mistake in 1998 by making clear sanctions would not be lifted in return for Saddam Hussein's compliance with inspections. Now the mistake is being repeated with Iran, giving it no clear incentive to cooperate, and making people in Tehran ask what the next demand will be.

Until this summer, the EU took a different line from Washington. Instead of "containment", it argued for more dialogue and trade with Iran. Unless the EU quickly breaks with Bush and resumes the path of incentives rather than threats, Iran is more likely to be pushed into wanting a bomb than renouncing it.

- Dealing with the Hydra? by Ken Coates; Whither Iran? by Shahram Chubin, International Institute of Strategic Studies

j.steele@guardian.co.uk

http://politics.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,9115,1055025,00.html
16 posted on 10/03/2003 8:36:09 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
IRAN LOOKS INTO STATOIL CASE.

Tehran has asked the Norwegian police and Statoil for documents relating to a case involving the Norwegian oil company and a consulting firm that is reportedly connected with the son of former Iranian President and current Expediency Council Chairman Ayatollah Ali-Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani, "Upstream" reported on 26 September. Statoil signed a contract worth more than $15 million with Horton Investments, which is incorporated in the Turks and Caicos Islands and owned by an Iranian living in London named Abbas Yazdi, according to the trade publication, which specializes in the oil-and-gas industry. Yazdi reportedly introduced Statoil officials to Mehdi Hashemi-Rafsanjani, the managing director of a subsidiary of the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) called the Organization for Optimization of Energy Consumption. Petroleum Minister Bijan Namdar-Zanganeh said after an OPEC meeting in Vienna that "Iran will take action if there is any evidence of wrongdoing," according to "Upstream." He denied that NIOC had any knowledge of any Horton-Statoil arrangement and vowed that any NIOC employee will be punished for wrongdoing. Several top Statoil executives already have been dismissed over what is viewed as a bribery case (see "RFE/RL Iran Report," 22 and 29 September 2003). BS

Source: RFE/RL NEWSLINE Vol. 7, No. 189, Part III, 3 October 2003

comment: Will they touch Rafsanjani jr?
17 posted on 10/03/2003 10:21:05 AM PDT by AdmSmith
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Comment #18 Removed by Moderator

To: DoctorZIn
Iran, IAEA Inspectors Meet Ahead of Crucial Probe

October 03, 2003
AFP
TerraNet

An Iranian couple pass a mural of Iran's three-color flag in Tehran. Iranian officials and IAEA inspectors began closed-door discussions ahead of a crucial series of probes into the Islamic republic's suspect nuclear programme.

Iranian officials and inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) began closed-door discussions, ahead of a crucial series of probes into the Islamic republic's suspect nuclear programme.

The talks between Iran's atomic agency and a team of IAEA inspectors, who arrived here overnight, cover the modalities for visits across Iran in the coming days and weeks aimed at determining whether it is secretly developing nuclear weapons.

An Iranian official confirmed the talks were underway, but declined to give any further details.

The inspectors' visit, described by IAEA head Mohammad ElBaradei as "decisive", will be the last round of international investigations ahead of an October 31 deadline given to Iran to come clean on its nuclear programme.

"We do expect that we will make a lot of progress with the full cooperation of Iran and that's why I'm going," said Pierre Goldschmidt, an IAEA deputy director general, ahead of the visit.

Goldschmidt said he expected Iranian officials to "have a very important message for us" on extending cooperation "and that we can progress very rapidly because as you know we have only a few weeks to make progress."

According to the conservative Entekhab newspaper, Iran's leadership met late into the night to hammer out their "final response to the IAEA resolution."

The paper said the meeting included President Mohammad Khatami, parliament speaker Mehdi Karubi, judiciary chief Ayatollah Hashemi Shahrudi, powerful former president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani and national security council head Hassan Rohani.

On Thursday, Khatami confirmed that Iran would continue to work with the IAEA.

"Tehran will continue its cooperation with the IAEA despite the inappropriate resolution it adopted because we are not worried about the transparency of out peaceful nuclear activities," he said, according to the ISNA student news agency.

Aside from urging Iran to unconditionally sign, ratify and implement an additional protocol to the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) allowing tougher inspections, the IAEA has set October 31 as a deadline for Iran to prove it is not secretly developing nuclear weapons.

Iran has also been asked to cease uranium enrichment, following the discovery during previous visits by IAEA inspectors of traces of highly enriched uranium.

Tehran fiercely denies allegations that it is seeking to develop nuclear weapons, and asserts it is merely exercising its right to develop nuclear power to meet future energy needs.

Officials have also argued that the traces of enriched uranium came into the country on imported equipment.

But whether Iran will sign the protocol or meet the deadline remains a subject of intense speculation.

Although vowing continued cooperation with the IAEA, a string of top officials here have branded the September 12 resolution -- which fixed the deadline -- as part of a US-Israeli plot to undermine the nearly 25-year-old Islamic regime.

Nevertheless, officials here are keen to prevent the issue being forwarded by the IAEA to the UN Security Council, which in turn could sanction Iran for its non-compliance.

The United States said Monday it would press for Iran's nuclear program to be referred to the Security Council if Tehran does not meet the deadline.

Later Thursday, Khatami said that in the view of Iranians "the atomic bomb is not a source of security. To have security we count on solidarity, mutual understanding, non-interference and the support of our people."

http://www.terra.net.lb/ch/english
19 posted on 10/03/2003 1:00:00 PM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
Rafsanjani: Nuclear Pressure on Iran is a Scandal

October 03, 2003
Reuters
MSNBC News

TEHRAN -- An influential former Iranian president called international pressure on Iran's atomic programme a scandal on Friday but described terms under which the country would agree to snap nuclear inspections.

Under intense U.S. pressure, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) set an October 31 deadline for Iran to prove it is not seeking atomic weapons. Iran has always denied the charge.

''The hypocritical policy of the Americans and Westerners has no justification. This is a scandal,'' Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani told worshippers at Friday prayers at Tehran University in remarks broadcast live on state media.

He said the Islamic Republic was willing to sign up to snap inspections but only if it were granted the same terms he insisted the United States was demanding for itself.

The United States has signed, but not yet ratified, the so-called Additional Protocol to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty that would permit snap inspections of nuclear sites.

''Our conditions...are the same as those the Americans want,'' said Rafsanjani, who heads the Expediency Council, a powerful body that arbitrates between the predominantly reformist parliament and Iran's hardline watchdog.

Inspections should not infringe on domestic security or religious sensibilities nor open a path for inspectors to intrude on ''secrets'' unrelated to the nuclear programme, he said.

Iranian conservatives view inspections as tantamount to allowing spies into the country.

The cleric, a top adviser to Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, added the IAEA would have to stand by its half of the bargain which Iran has argued is to offer technological assistance as a reward for putting pen to paper.

However, signing the Additional Protocol is no longer enough to halt the pressure from an increasingly united international front.

The IAEA's resolution has demanded not only ''unrestricted access'' for IAEA inspectors but also a suspension of uranium enrichment. Enriched uranium can be used as fuel in power plants, or as bomb material if highly enriched.

Rafsanjani was the latest in a string of Iranian politicians to say Iran was willing to co-operate with inspectors under terms that safeguard sovereignty.

But the suspension of uranium enrichment is now the thornier issue and Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi has said Iran would sign the Additional Protocol as long as it were allowed to continue its enrichment programme.

Nuclear inspectors arrived in Iran on Thursday.

Iran's reformist President Mohammad Khatami was quoted by the students' news agency on Thursday as saying the IAEA resolution was inappropriate but Iran would cooperate.

http://famulus.msnbc.com/FamulusIntl/reuters10-03-052504.asp?reg=MIDEAST
20 posted on 10/03/2003 1:01:19 PM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
Authorities Urged to Give Medical Care to Imprisoned Journalist Mohsen Sazgara

October 03, 2003
Reporters Without Borders
RSF

Reporters Without Borders called today on the Iranian authorities to give immediate news and guarantees about the state of health of imprisoned journalist Mohsen Sazgara, a prominent reformist who has heart problems and has been very weakened by a hunger-strike staged since he was jailed on 15 June.

Since 14 August, his family has not had word of him and not been able to see him in prison. He was transferred on 2 October from Teheran's Evin prison to Baghiatollah Hospital, where Canadian-Iranian journalist died in July after being beaten at Evin.

"We demand that Sazgara's family doctor be allowed to see him," said the press freedom organisation's secretary-general, Robert Ménard. "His life must not be endangered in any way, either health-wise, which would suit some people, or by being beaten, which is not unusual at Evin prison, as the attacks on Kazemi there have shown.

"We also call on the European Commission to press the authorities for an inspection of the country's prisons," he said.

Sazgara, one of the founders of Iran's reformist press, published the daily papers Jameh, Neshat and Tous, which have all been suspended, and is the founder of the Internet website www.alliran.net, which was closed after his arrest.

An outspoken political commentator, he wrote that "the past five years have shown that the country's religious rulers are neither reformable nor effective." He also called the Guide of the Islamic Revolution, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, "dictatorial." He was charged with undermining state security, insulting the Guide and making propaganda against the state, and jailed for a year on 27 September.

Sazgara is a thorn in the side of the predators of press freedom, who fear that once he gets out of jail he will reveal details of his conditions of detention and the practices of officials inside Evin prison. . Several journalists currently in jail are under the supervision of hardline Teheran prosecutor Said Mortazavi and the Guardians of the Revolution and are being held in the same section of the prison where Kazemi was beaten. With 17 journalists in jail, Iran is the biggest prison for journalists in the Middle East.

http://www.rsf.org/article.php3?id_article=8152
21 posted on 10/03/2003 1:02:12 PM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; McGavin999; Hinoki Cypress; ...
Authorities Urged to Give Medical Care to Imprisoned Journalist Mohsen Sazgara

October 03, 2003
Reporters Without Borders
RSF

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/994288/posts?page=21#21
22 posted on 10/03/2003 1:02:53 PM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
AL QAEDA'S NEW COURSE

By AMIR TAHERI

October 3, 2003 -- STILL smarting from the blows it has received in the past two years, the Islamist terror movement is debating a new strategy. Conducted in Islamist circles in Pakistan, the Middle East and Europe, and echoed in numerous Web sites and newssheets, the debate centers on a key question: Which should be our priority target - the United States and its Western allies, or the fragile Muslim states where we could come to power in a reasonable time frame?
Some argue that the 9/11 attack against the United States was "premature." They insist that the Islamist movement should have first seized power in several Muslim countries and dotted itself with nuclear weapons before taking on America, which is regarded as "the last champion of unbelief in the world."

Supporters of that view cite the position the Prophet took in the last year of his life, when he led a large Muslim army against the Byzantine Empire. On reaching the border between Arabia and Byzantium, the Prophet halted his army to have a good look at the forces of Emperor Heraclius (Hirqil in Arabic).

The Prophet was impressed: He saw that the Byzantine army would be no pushover. He ordered his own host to march back home without a single engagement. Although criticized by some Arab commanders at the time, the Prophet's decision to retreat was quickly endorsed by God Himself through a message relayed by Archangel Gabriel.

The lesson was that Muslims should not become involved in suicidal operations against a far stronger foe.

That was the position that Abdallah Azzam, the Palestinian ideologist of al Qaeda, took in the autumn of 1989. The question then was whether the Islamist movement, having helped drive out the Red Army from Afghanistan, should immediately move to attack the United States, whose support had been crucial for the Soviet defeat.

Azzam delivered his answer in a sermon in Peshawar, Pakistan. It was simple: The movement must consolidate its position in Afghanistan, seize control of Pakistan, capture the Arabian Peninsula and, having created a solid power base, liberate Kashmir and then-Soviet-held Central Asia before attacking the United States.

A few days after that sermon, Azzam was killed in a car bomb attack. At the time, the murder was blamed on Ayman al-Zawahiri, an Egyptian who later became al Qaeda's No. 2.

The two men had fought an ideological duel for months. Al-Zawahiri had accused Azzam of "localism," and dismissed the strategy of focusing on the region as "cat's p-ss politics." The Egyptian argued that the time had come for a frontal attack against the United States, that driving the Americans back into their neck of the woods would lead to the domino-like collapse of those Muslim states backed by Washington.

The al-Zawahiri-Azzam ideological duel was arbitrated by Osama bin Laden, a Saudi millionaire through whom funds for the movement were channeled from the oil-rich Arab states. Days after bin Laden had decided that al-Zawahiri was right, Azzam was dead.

Having won the argument, al-Zawahiri tested it with two attacks inside America, first in 1993, against the World Trade Center in New York, and then in September 2001.

Last week, however, al-Zawahiri, making an ideological U-turn, unveiled a new strategy that sounds like a rehash of that envisaged by Azzam.

In a taped message, played in Islamist cells all over the world and broadcast in part by two Arab satellite-TV channels, the Egyptian (believed to be hiding either in Pakistan or in Iran) presents the strategy in three segments.

* First, he calls on "brothers in Jihad" to try to seize power in Muslim countries where the present regimes are regarded as weak. He singles out Pakistan as "ripe for liberation."

Al-Zawahiri's analysis is based on the assumption that the pro-Jihad elements in the Pakistani army and secret services would help the radicals win power in Islamabad. As the only Muslim country with an acknowledged nuclear arsenal, Pakistan could put the Jihadists in a new league.

* The second segment of al-Zawahiri's strategy is focused on what he calls "lands of war," meaning Afghanistan and Iraq. There, he envisages years, if not decades, of war pitting the United States against Jihadists. The aim is to weaken America in preparation for its eventual fall.

Reading between the lines, it is clear that al-Zawahiri hopes that a future U.S. administration would get tired of involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan and withdraw from both. And if and when that happens, the only organized force capable of seizing power in Baghdad and Kabul would be the Jihadists.

* The strategy's third segment focuses on what al-Zawahiri regards as unstable Muslim countries, including Indonesia, Yemen and Somalia. All three suffer from tribal, ethnic and sectarian feuds dating back centuries - feuds that Islamists could exploit to weaken the established order before administering the coup de grace.

There are two omissions in al-Zawahiri's worldview.

The first is his native Egypt - where the Jihadist movement appears to have suffered its first major political defeat, followed by mass defections. Virtually the whole of the Gamaa-Islamiyah (Islamic Society) leadership has publicly renounced violence in the past year or so.

The dominant theme in the Egyptian Islamist movement now is "the re-Islamicization of society through preaching and example" rather than armed action. It may well be that the ideological swamps in which terrorists thrived have been drained, at least for the time being.

Al-Zawahiri also omits the oil-rich Arab states of the Persian Gulf. This may be because al-Zawahiri does not want to frighten the golden goose. With the bulk of Jihad funds coming from those states, al-Zawahiri may have decided it unwise to target them publicly. There is also the fact that, since 2001, the Jihadists have suffered many defections in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates.

Al-Zawahiri's new strategy does not mean that there will be no terror attacks in America or Western Europe. The global Islamist movement consists of numerous groups with independent sources of finance and strategies. They were never totally controlled by al Qaeda and are less so today if only because al-Zawahiri and his gang are forced to spend the bulk of their energies avoiding capture.

Al Zawahiri's conversion to the doctrine of his dead rival may have come too late. His strategy ignores one important fact: What happened on 9/11 changed the parameters of global politics.E-mail:

amirtaheri@benadorassociates.com

http://www.nypost.com/postopinion/opedcolumnists/7130.htm
23 posted on 10/03/2003 1:06:25 PM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; McGavin999; Hinoki Cypress; ...
AL QAEDA'S NEW COURSE

By AMIR TAHERI

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/994288/posts?page=23#23
24 posted on 10/03/2003 1:09:06 PM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran makes arrests over UK embassy shootings - TV

Reuters
03 Oct 2003 18:30:54 GMT

TEHRAN, Oct 3 (Reuters) - Iran has made arrests in connection with three drive-by shootings directed at the British embassy in Tehran, state television reported on Friday.

"According to the Intelligence Ministry the attackers of the British embassy have been identified and arrested," television reported.

British embassy staff and witnesses said the September attacks -- two against the embassy and one against the residential compound -- were carried out by two men on a motorbike. No-one was hurt.

The television did not say how many arrests had been made or gave any further details.

At the time of the shootings, tension had been rising between Tehran and London over Britain's arrest, at Argentina's request, of a former Iranian diplomat in connection with the 1994 bombing of a Jewish community centre in Buenos Aires which killed 85 people.

Iran was outraged by the arrest in August of Hadi Soleimanpour who was Iran's ambassador to Argentina at the time of the bombing. (Writing by Christian Oliver; editing by Steve Pagani; Tehran newsroom +98 21 850 0085))

http://www.alertnet.org/thenews/newsdesk/OLI364667.htm
25 posted on 10/03/2003 1:10:06 PM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
UN Experts Say They Can't Be Fooled in Iran Probe

Reuters
Fri October 3, 2003 11:12 AM ET
By Louis Charbonneau

VIENNA (Reuters) - U.N. nuclear experts can find the smallest needle in the biggest of haystacks when hunting for clues of secret weapons programs in Iran or other countries where U.N. inspectors are called on to probe and poke around.

On Friday, a team of technical experts from the Vienna-based International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) arrived for a month of intense inspections ahead of Iran's October 31 deadline to prove it has no secret atomic bomb program as Washington alleges.

If a country has a secret weapons program, it naturally tries to cover its tracks, as was the case in pre-1991 Iraq, before the IAEA discovered and dismantled its bomb program.

But an A-bomb maker still needs 20-30 kg of arms-grade uranium or plutonium to build a bomb. This leaves a highly detectable trail, says the IAEA, as it can detect atomic particles down to a single picogram -- one trillionth of a gram.

"If you handle weapons-grade materials, trace amounts get out," said Therese Renis, a technical specialist at the IAEA.

She compared the agency's ability to find nuclear traces to finding one among thousands of marbles spread across a square mile in the center of the Austrian capital.

Some of the technology IAEA inspectors use to find sub-microscopic traces of fissile uranium and plutonium appears deceptively simple at first glance. The most important tool is a cotton swab, just 4x4 inch, used for environmental sampling.

Inspectors are especially interested in swiping areas around ventilation systems, light fixtures and the tops of shelves, said David Donohue, head of the IAEA's Clean Laboratory Unit.

"Wherever people don't usually dust," he explained.

CONTAMINATION EXPLANATION IN VOGUE

Such inspections have already yielded suspicious results in Iran -- traces of arms-grade highly-enriched uranium at two nuclear sites. This has fueled suspicions that Tehran has been secretly purifying uranium for use in a bomb, which Iran denies.

The Iranians say the uranium came from contaminated machinery purchased abroad. But this explanation has met with widespread skepticism.

IAEA experts say Iran is not the first country to claim that the discovery of arms-grade material is due to contamination.

"It's in vogue," Renis said about the contamination explanation. "It used to be: 'your results are bad'."

Asked how many contamination claims have been confirmed, Renis said: "More have been disproved than proved."

After arriving at the IAEA labs in Seibersdorf, Austria -- a half-hour from Vienna -- the samples taken at nuclear facilities in Iran or elsewhere are analyzed by several machines which detect and identify the tiniest particles on the cotton swabs.

Great care is taken to prevent contamination of the swabs before and after they have been used to swipe a location. Six identical swipes are taken at each site and each is double-bagged and sealed to prevent cross-contamination.

Of the six swipes, several are analyzed, several archived and several sent anonymously to some of the IAEA's network of 14 labs around the world to ensure consistency.

If IAEA chief Mohamed ElBaradei decides to inform the agency's governing board about a finding by his inspectors -- as happened with the discoveries in Iran -- the results have been checked so many times that they are virtually unassailable.

"We have to have a high degree of confidence in our data to go that far," said senior IAEA safeguards analyst, Diane Fischer. "We want strong, conclusive evidence."

http://reuters.com/newsArticle.jhtml?type=worldNews&storyID=3554611
26 posted on 10/03/2003 1:13:18 PM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran's 'New Terms' for Inspections

October 03, 2003
BBC News
BBCi

A senior Iranian cleric has set out four new conditions for allowing the United Nations to make snap inspections of the country's nuclear facilities.

Former President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani said they included from protecting Iranian security to continuing civilian nuclear projects.

Mr Rafssanjani said his country had the right to the same inspection conditions as those demanded by the United States.

Officials from the UN's nuclear watchdog are in Tehran to persuade Iran to accept tougher inspections.

The UN has given Iran until 31 October to convince it that it is not seeking to produce nuclear weapons.

'Hypocritical West'

Mr Rafsanjani, a leading cleric in the Islamic state, referred to the new conditions in a sermon at Friday prayers at Tehran University which was broadcast live on television.

The four conditions set out were:

That Iranian national security is not jeopardised

That Islamic values and holy sites are not affected

That military secrets unconnected with the nuclear programme are not disclosed

That other states "fulfil" their duty to assist Iran with its civilian nuclear programme

"Our conditions... are the same as those the Americans want," Mr Rafsanjani said.

The US has signed, but not ratified, an international agreement permitting snap inspections of nuclear sites - the Additional Protocol to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

Mr Rafsanjani said that pressure on Iran to prove it had no nuclear weapons ambitions was a "scandal".

"The hypocritical policy of the Americans and Westerners has no justification," he said.

It is unclear of the new conditions have the official backing of the Iranian leadership which has been negotiating with a team from the UN's International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) since Thursday.

Indignation

If Iran fails to convince the IAEA by the end of October that it is not seeking to produce nuclear weapons, the issue could be referred to the UN Security Council, and Iran could face sanctions for breaching the NPT.

The BBC's Jim Muir reports that the 31 October deadline has stirred anger in Iran, which has been giving out mixed signals about how far it will co-operate.

The IAEA has already given Iran a detailed programme and timetable for the work it wants its inspectors to do during the four remaining weeks.

The question is whether Iran will go along with that programme and answer the many questions the agency is also asking, such as how traces of highly-enriched weapons-grade uranium came to be found at two Iranian facilities.

Iran's ambassador to the IAEA, Ali-Akbar Salehi, told the BBC that Iran would answer such questions - handing over, for example, lists of the imported components on which it says the contamination was brought in from outside the country.

Mr Salehi said Iran would also co-operate in allowing further inspections and the taking of more samples.

But Iranian officials have made it clear that it is not going to be a one-way street.

North Korean way?

They want practical recognition of Iran's right to produce peaceful nuclear energy and to process their own uranium for fuel - something the IAEA has asked them to stop doing, at least for the time being.

Iran also wants assurances that if it signs an additional protocol that would allow tougher inspections, there would be limits to how intrusive they would be - and also that signing that protocol would not spur the Americans to make more demands.

This has emerged as a substantial middle ground here, after several weeks of widely-divergent views and arguments behind the scenes.

Some hardliners have been arguing that Iran should scrap its NPT commitments altogether and go the way of North Korea.

That is certainly not the official position, though it cannot be ruled out if the talks go badly wrong.

One problem, our correspondent says, could be that the Iranians want to negotiate on many points, while the IAEA officials are bound by the resolution passed by the agency's board of governors last month and have little room for manoeuvre.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/3157332.stm
27 posted on 10/03/2003 1:29:58 PM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn; Pan_Yans Wife; MJY1288; Calpernia; Grampa Dave; anniegetyourgun; Ernest_at_the_Beach; ...
Thank you for your daily thread, DoctorZ. Thanks for the ping, PYW. I too often miss early morning pings.

Pinging the list to DoctorZin's interesting posts re. shifts in power in the ME. #23, Al Qaeda dreaming of a future President who's a pushover. #4, (back in the real world) two rival Shiite leaders are working to influence the future of Iraq:

The re-emergence of Najaf as a center of “Ijtihad” is the best news for Shiism in more than half a century. Competition between Najaf and Qom could enrich Shiite theology and benefit both centers. This is one duel that should be welcome, because it is one of ideas.

 Thanks, Tonkin!

If you want on or off my Pro-Coalition ping list, please Freepmail me. Warning: it is a high volume ping list on good days. (Most days are good days).

28 posted on 10/03/2003 4:45:35 PM PDT by Ragtime Cowgirl (THE PRESIDENT: Bernie, you're a good man. MR. KERICK: Thank you, Mr. President. WH, 10/3)
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To: Ragtime Cowgirl; DoctorZIn
Thanks for ping. I had no idea there was a thread with all this info on it about Iran happenings.
29 posted on 10/03/2003 4:51:21 PM PDT by anniegetyourgun
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To: anniegetyourgun
It's a great daily thread. I've been neglectful. Iraq and Iran have much in common and DoctorZ's info isn't found at the DoD sites.
30 posted on 10/03/2003 5:26:24 PM PDT by Ragtime Cowgirl (THE PRESIDENT: Bernie, you're a good man. MR. KERICK: Thank you, Mr. President. WH, 10/3)
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To: DoctorZIn
Shirazi uses words such as “must” and “obligatory”. This means that the clergy should exercise authority over society, and that their edicts should leave no room for individual choice and judgment.

Sistani uses such words as “recommended” or “preferable”. He casts the clergy into the role of “advisors” and “ethical counselors” of society. The ultimate decision is made by the individual on the basis of reason, which is the most precious gift from God to man.

Beneath censorship and oppression, Iranis have had enough of the former, and are ready to embark upon the latter--Boucher and the rest of the Saudi whores to the contrary notwithstanding.

31 posted on 10/03/2003 5:26:56 PM PDT by PhilDragoo (Hitlery: das Butch von Buchenvald)
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To: DoctorZIn
Thank you for your work on these threads Dr. Z. Lots of good information here, always.

Prairie
32 posted on 10/03/2003 5:30:06 PM PDT by prairiebreeze (It's about the trip to Niger and the uranium report. Not the wife's name or job title.)
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To: DoctorZIn

Manji's experience confirms the fascist nature of Islamism.

And of course she is correct that the cause of oppression of Muslims is the dictatorship of the mullahs, not the hated Americans or Jews or anyone or anything else.

This woman is the most dangerous threat to that dictatorship, and thus must be targeted for assassination by their craven terrorist murderers.

33 posted on 10/03/2003 5:39:38 PM PDT by PhilDragoo (Hitlery: das Butch von Buchenvald)
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To: DoctorZIn
Your NO23 deserves it's own thread Doc.
34 posted on 10/03/2003 5:55:54 PM PDT by McGavin999
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To: Ragtime Cowgirl
Bump!
35 posted on 10/03/2003 7:28:35 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: DoctorZIn
"...al-Zawahiri hopes that a future U.S. administration would get tired of involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan and withdraw from both. And if and when that happens, the only organized force capable of seizing power in Baghdad and Kabul would be the Jihadists."

Absolutely. That's why the Democratic calls for leaving Iraq before the country is stabilized, are so blind, naive and dangerous. Knowing the Jihadists would move right in, the result (among others) would be our fallen soldiers having died in vain.
36 posted on 10/03/2003 8:26:56 PM PDT by nuconvert ( Stop thinking about it and do it.)
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To: DoctorZIn
An outspoken political commentator, he wrote that "the past five years have shown that the country's religious rulers are neither reformable nor effective."

Nor are they humane--not that Boucher and the other douche bags at State give a whit.

Memo to President Bush: Do the Augean Stables bit at State--and Give Medical Care to Imprisoned Journalist Mohsen Sazgara.

37 posted on 10/03/2003 9:20:51 PM PDT by PhilDragoo (Hitlery: das Butch von Buchenvald)
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To: DoctorZIn
What a pathetic admission of the unsaleability of extremist Islam--that it must be spread at the point of a gun.

These pygmys aren't polling well in Iraq--or Iran--or anywhere.

38 posted on 10/03/2003 9:24:30 PM PDT by PhilDragoo (Hitlery: das Butch von Buchenvald)
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To: DoctorZIn; McGavin999; Eala; AdmSmith; dixiechick2000; nuconvert; onyx; Pro-Bush; Valin; ...
Saturday, 4 October, 2003, 04:01 GMT 05:01 UK

Embassy attack arrests welcomed

BBC News

The arrests of a number of people suspected of shooting at British embassy buildings in Iran has been welcomed by the Foreign Office.
Nobody was hurt in last month's attacks in Tehran, but the embassy was closed to the public and many non-essential staff were sent home.

"We welcome this and look forward to further developments," a UK government spokesman said following the arrests.

Officials in Iran have not said how many people were held, or who they are.


Criminal offences?

A brief announcement from the Iranian intelligence ministry said only that those responsible for carrying out the attacks had been identified and arrested.

It said more information would be made available later.

It was not known whether any of those arrested had been charged with criminal offences.

Three shooting attacks were carried out in less than two weeks in September.

Two were at the embassy's main compound in the city centre and one at the residential compound further north.

There were no injuries, but in the first attack bullets pierced the window of the main embassy office building, when many of the staff were there.

Since then the embassy has been closed to the Iranian public and offering just a limited visa service.

More than half of its UK based staff have left.

Lengthy investigation

No group has claimed responsibility for any of the attacks, which Iranian officials had earlier described as illogical and unacceptable.

The shootings came amid tension between London and Tehran over the arrest in the UK of a former Iranian diplomat.

The diplomat, Hade Soleimanpour, was detained last month in connection with the 1994 bombing of a Jewish community centre in Argentina in which 85 people died.

Mr Soleimanpour was Iran's ambassador to Argentina at the time of the bombing. He denies any involvement in it.

An Argentine judge issued an arrest warrant for him following a lengthy investigation.

He is currently free on bail while a London court considers Argentina's extradition request.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/3162980.stm
39 posted on 10/03/2003 11:23:58 PM PDT by F14 Pilot
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To: DoctorZIn
This thread is now closed.

Join Us At Today's Iranian Alert Thread

Live Thread Ping List | DoctorZin

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

40 posted on 10/04/2003 12:02:32 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: Ragtime Cowgirl
Let the revolution in Iran begin!
41 posted on 10/04/2003 6:25:07 AM PDT by blackie
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To: F14 Pilot
Hey Pilot, did you read DoctorZin's #23 post?
42 posted on 10/04/2003 6:39:41 AM PDT by blackie
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To: Ragtime Cowgirl
Bump!
43 posted on 10/04/2003 10:59:26 PM PDT by windchime
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To: DoctorZIn
jihad bump
44 posted on 11/27/2003 9:30:59 PM PST by Dajjal
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