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Iranian Alert -- August 4, 2003 -- LIVE THREAD PING LIST
The Iranian Student Movement Up To The Minute Reports ^ | 8.4.2003 | DoctorZin

Posted on 08/04/2003 2:10:10 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: iran; iranianalert; protests; studentmovement
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1 posted on 08/04/2003 2:10:10 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach; Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; ...
Join Us at the Iranian Alert -- August 4, 2003 -- LIVE THREAD PING LIST

Live Thread Ping List | 8.4.2003 | DoctorZin

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

2 posted on 08/04/2003 2:10:46 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad... Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn
A very troubling report. -- DoctorZin

Iran Closes In on Ability to Build a Nuclear Bomb

LA Times 8.4.2003
By Douglas Frantz, Times Staff Writer
VIENNA — After more than a decade of working behind layers of front companies and in hidden laboratories, Iran appears to be in the late stages of developing the capacity to build a nuclear bomb.

Iran insists that like many countries it is only building commercial nuclear reactors to generate electricity for homes and factories. "Iran's efforts in the field of nuclear technology are focused on civilian application and nothing else," President Mohammad Khatami said on state television in February. "This is the legitimate right of the Iranian people."

But a three-month investigation by The Times — drawing on previously secret reports, international officials, independent experts, Iranian exiles and intelligence sources in Europe and the Middle East — uncovered strong evidence that Iran's commercial program masks a plan to become the world's next nuclear power. The country has been engaged in a pattern of clandestine activity that has concealed weapons work from international inspectors. Technology and scientists from Russia, China, North Korea and Pakistan have propelled Iran's nuclear program much closer to producing a bomb than Iraq ever was.

No one is certain when Iran might produce its first atomic weapon. Some experts said two or three years; others believe the government has probably not given a final go-ahead. But it is clear that Iran is moving purposefully and rapidly toward acquiring the capability.

Among the findings:

• A confidential report prepared by the French government in May concluded that Iran is surprisingly close to having enriched uranium or plutonium for a bomb. The French warned other governments to exercise "the most serious vigilance on their exports to Iran and Iranian front companies," according to a copy of the report provided by a foreign intelligence service.

• Samples of uranium taken by U.N. inspectors in Iran in June tested positive for enrichment levels high enough to be consistent with an attempt to build a nuclear weapon, according to a foreign intelligence officer and an American diplomat. The Reuters news service first reported the possibility that the material was weapons-grade last month.

• Iran is concealing several weapons research laboratories and evidence of past activity at a plant disguised as a watch-making factory in a Tehran suburb. In June, U.N. inspectors were refused access to two large rooms and barred from testing samples at the factory, called the Kalaye Electric Co.

• Tehran secretly imported 1.8 tons of nuclear material from China in 1991 and processed some of it to manufacture uranium metal, which would be of no use in Iran's commercial program but would be integral to weapons production.

• As early as 1989, Pakistani generals offered to sell Iran nuclear weapons technology. Abdul Qadeer Khan, a Pakistani nuclear scientist regarded by the United States as a purveyor of nuclear secrets, has helped Iran for years. "Pakistan's role was bigger from the beginning than we thought," said a Middle Eastern intelligence official.

• North Korean military scientists recently were monitored entering Iranian nuclear facilities. They are assisting in the design of a nuclear warhead, according to people inside Iran and foreign intelligence officials. So many North Koreans are working on nuclear and missile projects in Iran that a resort on the Caspian coast is set aside for their exclusive use.

• Russian scientists, sometimes traveling to Iran under false identities and working without their government's approval, are helping to complete a special reactor that could produce weapons-grade plutonium. Moscow insists that it is providing only commercial technology for the civilian reactor under construction near the Persian Gulf port of Bushehr, an assertion disputed by Washington.

• In recent months, Iran has approached European companies to buy devices that can manipulate large volumes of radioactive material, technology to forge uranium metal and plutonium and switches that could trigger a nuclear weapon. European intelligence sources said Tehran's shopping list was a strong indication that Iran has moved to the late stages of weapons development.

Regional Impact

A nuclear-armed Iran would present the United States with a difficult political and military equation. Iran would be the first avowed enemy of Israel to possess a nuclear bomb. It also has been labeled by the Bush administration as a state sponsor of international terrorism.

Iranian nuclear weapons could shift the balance of power in the region, where Washington is trying to establish pro-American governments in Afghanistan and Iraq. Both of those nations border Iran and are places where Tehran wants to exert influence that could conflict with U.S. intentions, particularly in Iraq.

The Bush administration, which partly justified its war against Iraq by stressing concerns that Saddam Hussein had revived his nuclear weapons program, calls a nuclear-armed Iran unacceptable. At his news conference Wednesday, President Bush said he hopes international pressure will convince the Iranians that "development of a nuclear weapon is not in their interests," but he added that "all options remain on the table."

Foreign intelligence officials told The Times that the Central Intelligence Agency, which has long contended that Iran is building a bomb, has briefed them on a contingency plan for U.S. air and missile attacks against Iranian nuclear installations. "It would be foolish not to present the commander in chief with all of the options, including that one," said one of the officials.

A CIA spokeswoman declined to confirm or deny that such a plan has been drafted. "We wouldn't talk about anything like that," she said.

There is precedent for such a strike. Israeli fighter-bombers destroyed a French-built nuclear reactor outside Baghdad in 1981 shortly before it was to go online. The attack set back Iraq's nuclear program and drove it underground.

Taking out Iran's nuclear infrastructure would prove tougher, said Israeli military planners and outside analysts. For one thing, the facilities are spread around the country and small installations are still secret. At least one key facility is being built to withstand conventional airstrikes.

Contacts between Washington and Tehran are very limited, and analysts said U.S. decision-making is still dominated by a distrust of Iran rooted in the taking of American hostages during the Islamic Revolution in 1979 and an ideological aversion to negotiating with a regime regarded as extremist.

"The administration does not have a strategy because there is a fight in the administration over whether you should even deal with this government in Iran," said George Perkovich, a nuclear weapons expert at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Washington.

Inspections' Challenge

For now, the Bush administration is pinning much of its hopes of containing Iranian nuclear ambitions on the same international inspection apparatus that it blames for failing to locate weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.

So far, the U.N.-affiliated International Atomic Energy Agency, based here in Vienna, has preferred negotiation to confrontation with Iran.

In a June 16 report to the 35 countries represented on the agency's board, its director-general, Mohamed ElBaradei, criticized Iran for concealing many of its nuclear activities. But he resisted U.S. pressure to declare Iran in violation of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, which was created in 1968 to stop the spread of nuclear weapons.

Inspections are continuing along with Iranian roadblocks to a thorough examination, according to officials monitoring the progress. Still, IAEA officials hope to have a clearer picture of Iran's nuclear program by Sept. 8, when a follow-up report to the board is due.

The Iranian Foreign Ministry did not respond to telephone requests for interviews or to written questions for this article. Iran said last year that it plans to build six civilian reactors to generate electricity for its fast-growing population of 65 million. Ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi has said that allegations that Iran is concealing a weapons program are "poisonous and disdainful rumors" spread by the United States.

Iran's civilian nuclear energy program started in 1974 and was interrupted by the Islamic Revolution. It got back on track in 1995, when Russia signed an $800-million contract to complete the commercial reactor at Bushehr, which is scheduled to come online next year.

Russia also promised to sell Iran the uranium fuel to power the reactor. But Iran maintains that it wants to develop its own nuclear fuel-making capability, a position that has roused international suspicions.

Typically, nations with civilian nuclear programs buy fuel from the countries that export the reactors because the fuel-making process is complicated and expensive. In the most common way to make the fuel, uranium ore is converted to a gas and pumped into centrifuges, where rotors spinning at twice the speed of sound separate isotopes. The process concentrates, or "enriches," the uranium to the point that fission can be sustained in a reactor, which pumps out heat to drive electrical turbines.

The same enrichment process can concentrate fissionable uranium at greater levels to produce material for a bomb.

Countries that try to enrich their own uranium or manufacture plutonium in special reactors are immediately suspected of trying to join the elite nuclear arms club. Israel, India and Pakistan developed their own plants for producing fissile material for bombs under the guise of commercial reactors.

Iran agreed not to produce nuclear weapons when it signed the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty in 1970, which opened the door for it to acquire civilian reactors. The treaty does not prohibit Iran from producing or possessing enriched uranium but requires it to submit its nuclear facilities to international monitoring to ensure that materials are not diverted to weapons use.

Iran has permitted inspections of its declared commercial nuclear facilities. But last year, an Iranian exile group pinpointed a secret underground enrichment plant outside Natanz, a small mountain town about 200 miles south of Tehran known for its bracing climate and fruit orchards.

In December, the Institute for Science and International Security, a small think tank in Washington, published satellite photos of Natanz from the archives of a commercial firm, DigitalGlobe. The photos showed large-scale construction inside the perimeter of a security fence. Among the buildings were a pilot centrifuge plant and two underground halls big enough for tens of thousands of centrifuges, the institute said.

Pressure mounted to allow international monitors into Natanz, and senior IAEA officials visited the plant in February. They found 160 assembled centrifuges and components for 1,000 more. Moreover, the equipment was to be housed in bunkers 75 feet deep, with walls 8 feet thick.

The level of centrifuge development at Natanz already reflects thousands of hours of testing and advanced technological work, experts said. By comparison, Iraq had tested a single centrifuge for about 100 hours when IAEA inspectors began dismantling Baghdad's nuclear weapons program after the 1991 Persian Gulf War.

"They are way ahead of where Iraq was in 1991," said a U.N. official who is familiar with both programs.

Once it is up and running, Natanz could make enough material for a bomb within a year and eventually enough for three to five bombs a year, experts said.

Nuclear Neighbors

The Iranian exile group also revealed a secret site near Arak, a city of 400,000 in western Iran known as a historic center for weaving fine Persian carpets. Under international pressure, Iran conceded in February that it plans to build a special type of reactor there that will generate plutonium for research. Plutonium is the radioactive material at the heart of some of the most powerful nuclear bombs.

The disclosures cast previous Iranian government statements in a new light.

Hashemi Rafsanjani, head of an influential government council and president of Iran from 1989 to 1997, gave a speech on Dec. 14, 2001, that has been interpreted widely as both a signal that Iran wants nuclear weapons and a threat to use them against Israel. Describing the establishment of the Jewish state as the worst event in history, Rafsanjani warned, "In due time the Islamic world will have a military nuclear device, and then the strategy of the West would reach a dead end, since one bomb is enough to destroy all Israel."

Rafsanjani has since stepped back in his rhetoric, noting in a sermon on Friday that "because of religious and moral beliefs and commitments that the Koran has created for us, we cannot and will not pursue such weapons that destroy humanity."

On July 20, Iran unveiled a missile based on a North Korean design that brings Israel within range and hailed the event as an important step in protecting the Palestinians. Experts said the new missile could be armed with a small nuclear warhead, and Iran is developing a version that will carry a heavier payload.

"Today our people and our armed forces are ready to defend their goals anywhere," Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran's supreme leader, said in a ceremony unveiling the missile.

Many outside experts as well as Iranians say that even reformers linked to Iranian President Khatami believe that Iran needs a deterrent against its nuclear neighbors — Israel, Russia and Pakistan — and possibly against the United States.

"These weapons would guarantee the territorial integrity and national security of Iran," Nasser Hadian, a professor at Tehran University who is aligned with the reformers, said in a telephone interview from New York, where he is teaching at Columbia University. "We feel that we cannot possibly rely on the world to provide security for us, and this is felt by all the factions."

At a symposium in Rome in early July, ElBaradei told the audience that stopping the spread of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons depends greatly on eliminating the incentives for states to possess them. "It is instructive that the majority of the suspected efforts to acquire WMD are to be found in the Middle East, a hotbed of instability for over half a century," he said.

A senior U.N. official said he is not sure that Iran is developing a bomb. But the different fates of Iraq and North Korea, the other members of what Bush called the "axis of evil," demonstrate why countries out of favor with the United States might want a nuclear weapon, he added.

Iraq did not have a bomb and was easily invaded, he said, while North Korea claims to have a bomb and is trying to use it as a bargaining chip with the U.S. for security assurances and possibly increased aid. "If a regime has the feeling that it is not on the right wavelength with the United States, its position is to have a nuclear weapon," he said.

Iran faces numerous technological obstacles before it can produce a nuclear bomb, according to intelligence officials and independent experts. Once those problems are solved or close to being solved, some experts said they expect Iran to withdraw from the nonproliferation treaty, as North Korea did, and close its doors to IAEA inspectors.

"They have made the decision to develop a breakout capability, which will give them the option to leave the treaty in the future and complete a nuclear weapon within six months or a year," said Gary Samore, director of nonproliferation programs at London's International Institute for Strategic Studies and a former Clinton administration security official. "I think the program is probably unstoppable through diplomatic means."

Others disagree.

"I don't believe they have passed the point of no return," said Perkovich, the nuclear weapons expert at the Carnegie Endowment. "We should try to reverse Iran's direction by providing better, low-cost options to fuel the Bushehr electricity plant and by easing the security concerns that make Iranians, reformers and hard-liners, interested in getting a bomb."

Diplomacy has proved an imperfect solution in the past. The Clinton administration persuaded China not to sell nuclear items to Iran in the mid-1990s. Administration officials later used sanctions and negotiations to convince Russia to curb technology transfers to Iran's civilian program that U.S. intelligence believed were being diverted to weapons work.

But Russia is committed to the Bushehr reactor, which generates 20,000 jobs for its beleaguered nuclear industry. The project also allows hundreds of Iranians to train in Russia, raising concerns within the intelligence community that knowledge and hardware for weapons work will slip through.

Officials in Moscow, outside experts and foreign intelligence officials said economics are driving continuing Russian assistance to the Iranian weapons program and that it is probably occurring without government approval. They said thousands of Russian physicists, mathematicians and other scientists are unemployed or paid a pittance at home, pushing them to sell their expertise elsewhere.

"Russian scientists are freelancing, leading to a leakage of expertise, and you can't control that," said Bobo Lo, a former Australian diplomat and associate fellow at the Royal Institute of International Affairs in London. "That's where it gets really messy with the Iranians."

Multiple Sites

"Iran has made tremendous progress during the last two years, and according to our estimates it could reach a technical capability to create a nuclear device by 2006," said Anton Khlopkov, a nuclear expert at Moscow's Center for Policy Studies in Russia. "The problem is neither Russia nor the U.S. nor the IAEA had a clear understanding about real Iranian achievements in the nuclear field."

U.S. Secretary of State Colin L. Powell echoed the sentiment in March, saying on a CNN program, "It shows you how a determined nation that has the intent to develop a nuclear weapon can keep that development process secret from inspectors and outsiders, if they really are determined to do it."

Plants as large as Natanz are not necessary to build a bomb. Once the technology is developed, as few as 500 centrifuges can enrich enough uranium for a small weapon, experts said. Hiding that number would be easy, said an IAEA official, which is why intelligence officials are concerned about several smaller, still-secret plants throughout Iran.

For example, officers from two foreign intelligence agencies said weapons research is being conducted at a plant outside Kashan. One of the intelligence officials said the plant was involved in nuclear fuel production in two large halls constructed 25 feet underground.

The National Council of Resistance of Iran, the Paris-based exile group that revealed the Natanz and Arak sites, said in July that it had pinpointed two more weapons research locations in a rural area called Hashtgerd about 25 miles northwest of Tehran. The group is the political arm of the Moujahedeen Khalq, which is listed by the U.S. State Department as a terrorist group, but independent experts said its information from inside Iran has often been accurate. IAEA inspectors' requests to visit the Hashtgerd sites have been refused by Iranian authorities.

This spring, after considerable pressure from the IAEA, Iran reluctantly allowed inspectors to visit a nondescript cluster of two warehouses and smaller buildings tucked into an alley in the Tehran suburb of Ab-Ali. The place, called the Kalaye Electric Co., claimed to be a watch factory, but Iran conceded it had been an assembly point for centrifuges.

When the IAEA team arrived in March, they were refused access to the plant. A second trip in May was slightly more successful — inspectors entered the buildings, but two large rooms were declared off limits, according to new information from U.N. officials.

On June 7, inspectors returned to Iran for four days of probes at various sites. This time authorities refused to let them near Kalaye, U.N. officials said. They also were barred from using sophisticated testing equipment the team had brought from Vienna.

Such tests could detect a particle of enriched uranium within a huge radius and determine whether its concentration exceeded the 2%-to-5% level generally used in civilian reactor fuel. One IAEA official compared the ability of a swipe to detect enriched particles to finding a four-leaf clover in a field of clover 6 miles long, 9 miles wide and 150 feet deep.

But during their trip in June, IAEA inspectors took samples from an undisclosed location in Iran that tested positive for enriched uranium at a level that could be used in weapons, according to diplomatic and intelligence sources. IAEA officials refused to comment on the report.

Chinese Uranium Ore

Officials from two foreign intelligence services said Iranian scientists used nuclear material from a secret shipment from China to help enrich uranium at Kalaye and elsewhere.

China had long denied rumors about transferring nuclear materials to Iran. Early this year, U.N. officials said in interviews, the Chinese admitted selling Iran 1.8 tons of uranium ore and chemical forms of uranium used in the enrichment process in 1991.

Faced with a letter describing China's admission, Iranian authorities acknowledged receipt of the material, said the officials. At the same time, Iran said some of the chemicals were used at Tehran's Jabr ibn Hayan laboratory to make uranium metal, which has no use in Iran's commercial program but is a key part of a nuclear weapon.

In addition to China and Russia, Pakistan and North Korea have played central roles in Iran's nuclear program, according to foreign intelligence officers and confidential reports prepared by the French government and a Middle Eastern intelligence service.

North Korean technicians worked for years helping Iran develop the Shahab-3 missile, unveiled last month in Tehran. A foreign intelligence official and a former Iranian intelligence officer said the Koreans are now working on a longer-range Shahab-4 and providing assistance on designs for a nuclear warhead.

The foreign intelligence official said high-ranking North Korean military personnel have been seen at some of Iran's nuclear installations. A hotel is reserved for North Koreans in Tehran and a resort on the Caspian Sea coast northwest of Tehran has been set aside for their use, according to one of the sources and a U.N. official.

The centrifuges seen by IAEA officials at Natanz in February were based on a Pakistani design, according to intelligence officials. The design and other new evidence point to Pakistan as a bigger supplier of nuclear weapons technology to Iran than initially thought, said foreign intelligence officers, Iranian exiles and independent experts.

While U.S. intelligence is aware of Pakistan's help to Iran, the Bush administration has not pushed the issue with Islamabad because of Pakistan's role as an ally in the battle against the Al Qaeda terrorist network and Afghanistan's Taliban, outside experts and foreign intelligence officials said.

Signs of Pakistani Aid

The most convincing sign of Pakistan's role in Iran comes from what several people described as the long involvement in Iran of Khan, the scientist regarded as the father of Pakistan's nuclear bomb.

The CIA concluded in a top-secret analysis last year that Khan shared critical technology on centrifuges and weapons-test data with North Korea in the late 1990s. The agency tracked at least 13 visits by Khan to North Korea over a span of several years, according to a January article in the New Yorker magazine.

Two former Iranian officials and American and foreign intelligence officials said Khan travels frequently to Tehran to share his expertise. Most recently, two of these people said, he has worked as a troubleshooter to iron out problems with the centrifuges and with weapons design.

Ali Akbar Omid Mehr, who was in charge of Pakistani affairs at Iran's Foreign Ministry in 1989 and 1990, said he came across Khan as he prepared what is known as a "green book" detailing contacts between Tehran and Islamabad.

"I saw that Mr. A. Q. Khan had been given a villa near the Caspian Sea for his help to Iran," Mehr said in an interview in Denmark, where he and his family live under assumed names since he defected in late 1995.

His account of the villa was supported by other Iranian exiles.

Khan might have played a role in a previously undisclosed offer from Pakistani military commanders to sell nuclear weapons technology to Iran in 1989, two former senior Pakistani officials said in separate interviews describing the episode.

According to their accounts, soon after Rafsanjani's election as president of Iran in 1989, he took Benazir Bhutto, then prime minister of Pakistan, aside at a reception in Tehran and told her about the proposal from her generals.

Rafsanjani was commander of Tehran's armed forces at the end of the Iran-Iraq war in 1988, and one of his goals as president was to reestablish his country as a regional power. He told Bhutto that the Pakistani generals wanted to transfer the technology secretly, on a military-to-military basis, but he wanted her to approve the transaction, the former Pakistani officials said.

Earlier that year, Bhutto had appeared before the U.S. Congress and promised that Pakistan would not export nuclear technology. Bhutto often bucked the generals, and the two officials said she blocked the transfer — at least until she was ousted in 1996.

Current Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf said in an interview with The Times that his country never provided nuclear assistance to Iran, before or after he took office in a military coup in October 1999. "Zero," the general insisted. "Never worked — even before — never worked with Iran. This is the first time this has been raised, ever."

Pressured by the United States, Musharraf removed Khan as head of Pakistan's nuclear program nearly two years ago. Since then, Musharraf said, Khan has been retired and his travel is not monitored.

Other intelligence officials and governments disputed Musharraf's denial.

"There are convincing indications about the origin of the technology — it is of Pakistani type — but Iran undoubtedly controls the manufacturing process of centrifuges and seems even able to improve it," said the French government report on Iran's nuclear program, which was delivered in May to the Nuclear Suppliers Group, an organization of governments with nuclear programs.

A growing body of evidence suggests that Iran is simultaneously pursuing another way to produce material for a bomb.

This alternative is a heavy-water reactor, which could breed weapons-grade plutonium. In the initial stage of the program, Iran is building a plant to distill heavy water near the Qareh Chay River, about 35 miles from Arak. Heavy water, which is processed to contain elevated concentrations of deuterium, allows the reactor to operate with natural uranium as its fuel and produce plutonium.

This type of reactor is used in some places to generate electricity, but it is better known as a means of producing plutonium for weapons that bypasses uranium enrichment and its many technical obstacles. As a result, the presence of a heavy-water reactor is often regarded as a sign that a country is trying to develop a weapon.

American spy satellites had detected construction at Natanz before its existence was made public last year. But the work near Arak had remained secret because the plant under construction looked like any other distillery or similar factory, according to intelligence officials and U.N. authorities.

After exiles revealed Arak's existence, Gholamreza Aghazadeh, the president of Iran's atomic energy organization, informed the IAEA that the planned reactor was strictly meant for research and producing radioisotopes for medical use.

To many experts, however, the project raises another red flag. "For Iran, there is no justification whatsoever to have a heavy-water plant," said Samore of the International Institute for Strategic Studies.

Echoing him, a senior U.N. official said, "The heavy-water plant sticks out like a sore thumb."

Iran first tried to buy heavy-water reactors as turnkey projects from China and India in the mid-1990s, according to a previously undisclosed dossier prepared by a foreign intelligence agency and provided to The Times. Blocked on that front by the United States, according to former U.S. officials, Iran decided to build its own and turned to two Russian institutes.

The United States learned of the cooperation through telephone intercepts and imposed sanctions on the Russian institutes in 1999. The sanctions remain in effect, but officials with foreign intelligence agencies and the CIA said there is evidence that Russian scientists are still providing expertise for the project.

Khlopkov, the Russian nuclear expert, said he thinks it is unlikely that Russian scientists are helping Iran with any of its weapons programs. Still, he said, the recent disclosures about the Iranian program surprised Moscow and might cause Russia to cancel a second planned reactor unless Iran agrees to stricter international inspections of its nuclear facilities.

Industrial Scale'

Despite Iran's progress, most experts said it is unlikely to develop a weapon without more outside help, particularly in procuring specialty technology. That is why some said they were alarmed by Iran's recent attempts to buy critical dual-use technology, which has military and civilian applications.

In November, German authorities blocked an attempt by businessmen allegedly working on behalf of Iran to acquire high-voltage switches that could be used for both breaking up kidney stones and triggering a nuclear weapon.

French authorities reported that French firms with nuclear expertise have received a rising number of inquiries from suspected Iranian front companies for goods with military uses.

In a previously undisclosed incident, French authorities recently stopped a French company from selling 28 specialized remote manipulators for nuclear facilities to a company in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, that the authorities said was a front for Iran's nuclear program.

Because the manipulators were designed to handle heavy volumes of radioactive material, intelligence authorities suspected they were destined for a plant in which uranium or plutonium would be reprocessed on a large scale.

"Such intent is indicative of a willingness to move from a laboratory scale to an industrial scale," said a European intelligence official who is familiar with details of the attempt.

The pattern of attempted purchases and the discovery of previously secret nuclear installations led the French government to conclude in May that Iran is using its civilian nuclear program to conceal a military program.

"Iran appears ready to develop nuclear weapons within a few years," said the French report to the Nuclear Suppliers Group.

http://c.moreover.com/click/here.pl?l82962348
3 posted on 08/04/2003 2:29:03 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad... Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach; Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; ...
A very troubling report. -- DoctorZin

Iran Closes In on Ability to Build a Nuclear Bomb

LA Times 8.4.2003
By Douglas Frantz, Times Staff Writer

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/957730/posts?page=3#3

"If you want on or off this Iran ping list, Freepmail me”
4 posted on 08/04/2003 2:30:50 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad... Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran's Hardliners Step Up Arrests of Activists

August 04, 2003
The Guardian
Dan De Luce

Iran's hardline clergy has begun arresting and interrogating journalists, students and political activists in a new attempt to intimidate opposition before next year's parliamentary elections.

In the most extensive wave of detentions in recent years, plainclothes security agents have detained hundreds of student activists as well as journalists and reformist commentators.

"This is not a new process," Reza Yousefian, an MP in the reformist movement, told the Guardian. "But it has accelerated. They want to prepare themselves for the next round of parliamentary elections.

"Newspapers and students are the two engines of reform and they have been damaged and disrupted in some way by these arrests."

The most recent detentions include the arrest of Abolghasem Golbaf, the editor in chief of the political monthly Gozaresh.

Ever since the election of reformist Mohammad Khatami as president six years ago, conservative militants acting through the judiciary and shadowy security services appear to have waged a campaign of repression to undermine the reformist movement.

A number of President Khatami's allies have been imprisoned, a senior adviser was murdered three years ago and dozens of newspapers have been shut down.

Reformist activists say the pro-democracy demonstrations which erupted in June have provided a fresh opportunity for the conservative clergy to go after the most strident voices demanding reform of the country's theocracy.

The minister of science, research and technology, Mostafa Moin, submitted his resignation last week amid speculation that he had objected to political interference at universities and had come under pressure to punish student activists after the June demonstrations.

Upon release, many students and other activists are less ready to speak their minds and some journalists choose to stay away from "sensitive" topics. After being freed on bail, dozens of journalists and activists operate under the cloud of a pending trial.

But despite the imprisonment of more than 20 journalists in recent months, the news media and dissident voices are growing increasingly defiant as they test the limits of the system.

Details of psychological torture are emerging and a flurry of open letters to the powerful supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, have castigated "authoritarian methods".

In a 32-page letter published last month, Abbas Abdi, a reformist held in solitary confinement, described how the authorities put inmates under extraordinary pressure to extract confessions.

A former student radical who helped to seize the US embassy in 1979, Mr Abdi was imprisoned and accused of plotting with foreign powers after his firm published a poll last year showing more than 70% of Iranians favoured restoring relations with the US.

The death in custody last month of a Canadian photojournalist of Iranian descent, Zahra Kazemi, shocked the country. Revelations that she died of a blow to the head and that authorities might have tried to hush up details of her case have underlined the reformists' long-held concerns that hardliners are operating parallel security services and unregistered detention centres outside legal authority.

Many voters, disappointed with the pace of reform, are expected to boycott elections next February, allowing the conservatives to win back control of parliament.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/iran/story/0,12858,1011846,00.html
5 posted on 08/04/2003 2:37:07 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad... Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach; Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; ...
Iran's Hardliners Step Up Arrests of Activists

August 04, 2003
The Guardian
Dan De Luce

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/957730/posts?page=5#5

"If you want on or off this Iran ping list, Freepmail me”
6 posted on 08/04/2003 2:38:28 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad... Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn
Powell Discusses North Korea, Iran, War on Terrorism

August 03, 2003
US Department of States
Washington File

Interview by regional news syndicates August 1

Any substantive discussion of North Korea's nuclear weapons program must be "a negotiation among six parties who have equities," Secretary of State Colin Powell said in an interview with U.S. regional news syndicates August 1.

"What North Korea has been doing is in direct contravention to understandings and agreements they have with some of their neighbors," Powell said. "And therefore, North Korea has to explain and answer to China, South Korea, Japan, Russia, the United States the nature of their policies and everybody has an equity."

He continued, "I think it is quite appropriate, in fact, I think it is essential that all of the parties be involved" in any talks with North Korea."

Powell said that U.S. policy "is to work diplomatically with our partners and the North Koreans to find a diplomatic political solution to the problem."

He also cited the positive role played by the Chinese in moving the negotiations forward. "They are using their influence in a very effective and positive way -- it was through Chinese efforts that we got to the trilateral step, and through Chinese efforts that we are at this next step."

Regarding Iran, Powell said the United States is concerned about that country's nuclear energy program and is "particularly engaged with the Russians on their support of the projects such as we share.

"We want to see whether or not Iran is so committed to creating an indigenous fuel cycle that they don't need outside help after a while," Powell said. "And we believe that the international community is more and more coming to the conclusion that we have to do everything possible to persuade the Iranians one way or another that this is not the direction in which they should be moving."

Powell stressed that seeking nuclear weapons will not "do much" for the Iranian people, and that such activities are "destabilizing to the region." He added that "benefits await the Iranian people at some point in the future if they abandon this kind of activity of trying to develop weapons of mass destruction and they foreswear support of terrorist activities."

The Secretary said that the global war on terrorism is "alive" and "active," citing international efforts in Afghanistan and Iraq -- "and what we're doing with friends around the world either through intelligence activity, law enforcement activity, military activity."

Powell added that the United States has been strong "on the 'demand side' of the global war against terrorism by improving the way in which we watch our airports, and the way in which we have knowledge of those who are coming to our country, the visa changes we have made, the INS [U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service] work that's underway, the investment that's been made in the Department of Homeland Security and the work that [Homeland Security secretary] Ridge has been doing."

In response to a question on Saudi Arabia's contributions to the war on terrorism, Powell said that the U.S. relationship with that country is a good one.

"They gave us support during the Iraq war through use of facilities and whatnot. They have become much more aggressive in the global war on terrorism," he said. "They are a major oil producer in that part of the world, and they make sure that there is a steady supply of petroleum that we need. We pressed them to change some things they have done in the past with respect to how charitable contributions have previously ... been funneled to certain religious organizations that are teaching more than religion. And they have been responsive to our concerns."

Powell said that the United States and Saudi Arabia are working together on a broad range of other issues as well.

"We had a number of child-custody cases that a difference of approach and policy would resolve a number of them. There are many more yet to be resolved and we're working with the Saudis in a cooperative manner," he said. "They were very helpful in the Sharm el Sheik summit as we got the roadmap underway. And so I think we have a good relationship with the Saudis. They are doing more for us and ... when they are disagreements or policies that we think they need to take another look at, we engage with them as friends of 50 years."

Following is a transcript of the interview, as released by the Department of State:

(begin transcript)

Interview by Regional Syndicates
Secretary Colin L. Powell
Washington, DC
August 1, 2003

QUESTION: North Korea.

SECRETARY POWELL: Yes, sir.

QUESTION: You know, you talked about this is essentially a multi-party kind of thing that's supposed to happen, but isn't the United States a big gorilla, thousand pound gorilla in the room? Really when it comes down to push and shove, it doesn't have to be a direct negotiation between us and them.

SECRETARY POWELL: No, it has to be a negotiation among six parties who have equities. I would not say that China is not a gorilla in using your context, not my context. But what North Korea has been doing is in direct contravention to understandings and agreements they have with some of their neighbors, especially South Korea, and it is the Chinese President, Jiang Zemin, who said at Crawford last fall that the Chinese policy is a denuclearized peninsula. And therefore, North Korea has to explain and answer to China, South Korea, Japan, Russia, the United States the nature of their policies and everybody has an equity. So I think it is quite appropriate, in fact, I think it is essential that all of the parties be involved.

Now once we are at these meetings, many conversations can take place. A formal setting is six, but I have been in many diplomatic settings where different parties among those in attendance can talk to one another, one-on-one, two-on-two and three-on-three.

As I have said to North Korea, most recently at the ARF meeting in Phnom Penh -- and I said this openly to 20-odd nations that were represented there -- anything we say to the North Koreans would be known to our friends and partners. There will be no secrets. And anything the North Koreans say to us will be shared with our friends and partners, because this is going to be an open, transparent process with our friends and partners.

So I've been trying to make it clear to the North Koreans that no particular benefit is gained by insisting on a one-to-one discussion or one-to-one negotiations as they like to say. But there will be certainly an opportunity is a six-party meeting for them to say something directly to us if they choose to do so and for us to backwards. But the formal setting will be six.

QUESTION: Is a non-aggression pact an option? There seems to be a bit of confusion about whether --

SECRETARY POWELL: No, there's no confusion. We've said we're not doing non-aggression pacts. We don't have any. I don't know of a single non-aggression pact that I can think of. And we, as a practice, don't do that. But there are ways to talk about security, and there are ways to talk about intent, but they'll include a pact that will require some form of Senate confirmation or some form of legislative procedure.

It's also important to point out that the North Koreans were given various assurances by the previous administration on a number of occasions beginning with the agreed framework. The North Koreans entered into an assurance agreement with the South Koreans two years before the agreed framework. And in the last several years of President Clinton's Administration, there were communiques issued and other statements made that certainly demonstrated no hostile intent on the part of the United States. And in the face of that, the North Koreans went ahead and created a second track of enriched uranium capacity.

So I believe that there are ways, and I have some ideas which I am not prepared to share with you today, on how their concerns about security and U.S. intent can be dealt with and dealt with within a multilateral framework.

QUESTION: Can you talk about the other parts of the pact, other things they are interested in like economic aid, diplomatic relations?

SECRETARY POWELL: The President has --

QUESTION: The same with sanctions.

SECRETARY POWELL: The President has said very often that he cares about the North Korean people and the terrible situation they find themselves in with respect to lack of food, an economy that is not functioning well. Others of our friends who follow North Korea have the same concerns, the Japanese, the South Koreans of course, the Chinese who provide million a year -- we estimate -- in aid, direct aid as well as economic activity and 80 percent of their fuel. And so all of us are concerned about the plight of the North Korean people.

And the President has made it clear that he is willing to assist them in relieving the difficulties that they are having. Japan has said so. In fact, last year Prime Minister Koizumi had even made rather specific generous suggestions or offers to what Japan might be able to do.

So as we go forward, and as you look at what we're calling it -- what was our nickname for it? Was it --

QUESTION: The comprehensive approach?

SECRETARY POWELL: No.

QUESTION: The Bold Approach?

SECRETARY POWELL: The Bold Approach. Yeah. There are benefits for North Korea for moving away from this kind of activity. And that's what Mr. Kelly went to tell them last October.

QUESTION:There has been talk in theory about, I believe it was Deputy Secretary Wolfowitz talked about fairly recently about the regime being on the verge of collapse. People have been talking about that for years. Wouldn't the collapse of that regime be utterly disastrous in terms of how to deal with -- to interact with twenty-some odd million -- thirty million -- many of them -- legions of them undernourished. There would probably even be a refugee run, the likes of which we haven't seen in years.

Wouldn't a collapse like that be something of a disaster?

SECRETARY POWELL: It would depend on what it collapsed into or what filled the vacuum. But people speculated about collapse to this regime, as you say, for many years and the regime is still there. I don't have a basis for saying there is an imminent collapse. My challenge is to work with not a collapse may or may not happen, but the situation is there.

Right now there is a government there. It's been there for a lot of decades, and that's what I have to deal with. So I can't speculate on what the situation might or might not be. What the situation would be following a catastrophic collapse, I don't really know. I don't think it's anything that any of North Korea's neighbors at the moment wish to see.

QUESTION:What's your --

SECRETARY POWELL: They clearly do not wish to see it. And our policy, the President's policy, is to work diplomatically with our partners and the North Koreans to find a diplomatic political solution to the problem.

QUESTION: What's your sense of why Kim Jong Il did this? Why is it in their self-interest to do it at this time? They've been resisting this for a long time.

SECRETARY POWELL: I don? think -- I think it's best that I not try to speculate on his decision-making process or what went through his mind. Let me just not totally duck your question by saying that clearly he must have seen that it was somehow in his interest to engage with his neighbors and with the United States in this multi-party forum, and we welcome that. The President is optimistic, as we said earlier today, that progress can be made.

QUESTION: Do you think China is now prepared to apply the kind of leverage that you would like them to? I mean they seem to have the most control. They are also somewhat at least -- somewhat restricted into the tension that you put on this leverage, because they --

SECRETARY POWELL: I think China is applying its influence. Let me use the word influence rather than pressure and leverage. But they are using their influence with them. And North Korea, in a very effective and positive way -- it was through Chinese efforts that we got to the trilateral step, and through Chinese efforts that we are at this next step.

We seriously started to engage the Chinese on this I would say last year when President Bush and Jiang Zemin met at Crawford. And then earlier this year in February, when I went to China, I encouraged the Chinese to get more directly involved. Until that meeting in Beijing I had with them, the Chinese were taking the position, even after Crawford, look, you guys have to go talk to the North Koreans. We're all going to have to go talk to the North Koreans. And the Chinese kept saying, you don't understand, they won't talk to anybody but you. And so the only solution is you have to talk to the North Koreans. And my answer was we did talk to the North Koreans last October, and we ended up with a difficult problem in that they acknowledged that they had a second nuclear weapons program.

And so this went back and forth, and finally the Chinese came and said we'll try. They tried, and they were very effective. And they sent senior leaders to Pyongyang and presented the case and succeeded in arranging for the trilateral discussions. We thanked them for it, and we told them at that time that this is a start, but we really want to get to a fuller forum, a bigger forum where all parties are represented who have an interest.

Remember, our initial idea was nine. We could think of nine countries that might be a part, the more I remember. We had Australia -- we had quite a few -- the EU might have been a member.

And so we went back and we did the three, the trilateral in April. We said to the Chinese, if we go down this road, it has to be expanded. And why not? Because we're going to tell our other friends that is going on. Transparency.

The last time it was done, the South Koreans weren't really getting a role in the commitments that were being made and all the negotiations that were taking place. This time, openness and transparency.

And the Chinese came here two Fridays ago in the next conference room. We talked for two hours and 40 minutes, and I laid out a way to get to multi-party discussions that went beyond trilateral and told them I think this is a way a lot of interest can be served. And the Chinese left last Friday night and came back the day before yesterday with President Hu speaking with President Bush and saying we got something. And then in the last 36 hours it's been confirmed through multiple channels.

And so that's the Chinese using their influence, their leverage, if you will.

QUESTION: So the deal is now the non-aggression pact is off the table. It's food and other aid --

SECRETARY POWELL: I didn't say that.

QUESTION: I thought -- let me get straight. You said we don't do --

SECRETARY POWELL: No, you're suggesting -- we don't do pacts, that's right. That part's fine.

The question that was asked was, do you expect that there will be a way for you to assist in the future with economic assistance and whatnot?

We already provide food to North Korea. And I think I answered that, but I don't want to answer it quite the way you asked to suggest that we're going over there with a shopping bag and there's a trade -- trading is about to begin at the very next meeting.

If we solve this problem --

QUESTION: This problem being?

SECRETARY POWELL: Nuclear weapons and other behavior of theirs that is troublesome -- drugs. There are other issues, proliferation of weaponry and technology. So there are a number of issues that have to be solved. And as we go forward, this issue, if we see progress in this set of discussions, then I believe opportunities do open up for us to help the people of North Korea. But I don't want to quite answer it the way you asked it, that bing, bing, bing, bing.

QUESTION: Question on a different topic? Iran? I don't expect you to say that there are negotiations going on, but there are, Mr. Secretary, reports that the Iranians are willing to turn over some senior al-Qaida people that they have, but they would in turn want us to take further action against the MEK in Iraq, disband, eliminate, whatever term you want. Is that a fair description of the situation? Is that a deal worth doing considering the case of the terrorist lists?

SECRETARY POWELL: We are in, as you can imagine, this is a sensitive issue let me just say. Using appropriate interlocutory, we are in touch with the Iranians on both of these issues.

QUESTION: Are you optimistic?

SECRETARY POWELL: We'll wait and see. Want to go back to that one?

(Laughter.)

QUESTION: Let's sort of stick with the subject, the flavor of the minute here on Iran. A lot of people are theorizing that they are now the model state for developing nuclear capacity sort of in the modern transparent world. You get to within 12 to 18 months of a program by claiming and essentially disguising it as a civilian energy program, and then when you feel the moment is right you back out of your treaties and then you plow headlong towards a weapons program. And virtually, I mean, the press is loaded with certainly with analysis that would seem to indicate that. What is your take right now on Iran's nuclear energy project? And how concerned are you about where it's going?

SECRETARY POWELL: We are concerned. We expressed that concern repeatedly throughout the course of this administration. We are particularly engaged with the Russians on their support of the projects such as we share. The Iranians, in recent months, have been found to be doing a number of things that we didn't know they were doing before that have now been brought to the attention of the IAEA. Some of the facilities that the IAEA is now looking at and wants more access to.

I think the Russians now share our concern and have used that word "We share concerns you have," that we have to be very careful going forward. As a first step, the international community is asking Iran to sign on to this additional protocol. Iran may or may not do that. We would not be satisfied until not only is the protocol signed, but any other indication that they might be using nuclear power activity for development of weapons has been dealt with.

As you rightly say, you can enter into lots of agreements and then back out of them. We want to see whether or not Iran is so committed to creating an indigenous fuel cycle that they don't need outside help after a while. And we believe that the international community is more and more coming to the conclusion that we have to do everything possible to persuade the Iranians one way or another that this is not the direction in which they should be moving. It doesn't do much for the their people. It's destabilizing to the region. And benefits await the Iranian people at some point in the future if they abandon this kind of activity of trying to develop weapons of mass destruction and they foreswear support of terrorist activities. And this is a policy we had maintained for some time.

I think what's changed in most recent months is that whereas it used to be just the United States sort of crying alone in the wilderness on this one, in light of recent revelations and information that's become available to IAEA and others, public people now share our concern.

I have time for one or two more.

QUESTION: Senator Graham of Florida was in our office yesterday, and you probably heard all this before, but he says with the war in Iraq we -- the United States -- basically has its priorities wrong, that it lost the momentum on the war on terrorism. What do you say to that? And has the trail gone cold on Usama bin Laden?

SECRETARY POWELL: I don't know if its gotten colder or warmer than it was last week or the week before. I know he -- still somebody we want to get our hands on. But it's hard to agree with the assessment that we've lost the (inaudible) on a global war on terrorism when we see our friends, as well as the United States, still hot on the trail. And with each passing week, there are a new series of arrests or cells being broken. The Saudis are now totally engaged in the process and doing quite a bit of effective work in recent weeks especially since the May bombing. And so we're still hard at work. No priority has been lost on a global war against terrorism. And as you've heard me and my colleagues say, we believe Iraq was part of that global war. Afghanistan is now finding its way forward as a new democratic nation on the face of the Earth. It's got difficulties, but it's amazing how far we have come in just about 18 months.

Yesterday morning is show and tell in the Oval Office. Even old generals can play show and tell. I brought the President a piece of the asphalt road that is now going in that will really change things in Afghanistan. And the more you improve the situation of the people in Afghanistan, the more you stabilize that country, the less hospitable it will become for Taliban and for people like Usama bin Laden to appeal to disenchanted people who are no longer disenchanted because their life has gotten better than it ever was under the Taliban. And they will no longer wish to be hosts for this kind of terrorist activity.

So what we're doing in Afghanistan we did in Iraq, and what we're doing with friends around the world either through intelligence activity, law enforcement activity, military activity, the global war on terrorism is alive, active, and chasing them down.

I might also point out that we have done a heck of a lot of work on the "demand side" of the global war against terrorism by improving the way in which we watch our airports, and the way in which we have knowledge of those who are coming to our country, the visa changes we have made, the INS work that's underway, the investment that's been made in the Department of Homeland Security and the work that Governor Ridge has been doing. All of this is on the demand side, if I can put it that way, of the global war on terrorism.

So we're going after it in every dimension imaginable.

QUESTION: I believe at the start of the week you were asked about another resolution on Iraq.

SECRETARY POWELL: Yeah.

QUESTION: In when you spoke to Reuters and said you hadn't yet made a decision. Has that changed at all --

SECRETARY POWELL: No, it's still under consideration. I have to -- I'm still in discussions with my foreign minister buddies on the Security Council, and we think we have all we really need in 1483. But that's not a closed issue. There are some nations that might provide forces who indicate they need some additional mandate either as a result of -- either in the form of a request from the governing council or some international organization, not necessarily the UN, or a UN resolution. But it's not an overwhelming case yet that a new UN resolution is needed for those purposes. And a UN resolution always starts off a new UN battle. And so I have to constantly weight, okay we go for a UN resolution to achieve this purpose, but how much does it take to get such a resolution passed, and what might others expect in such a resolution.

You had a small foretaste of that earlier this week when there was a debate under the Spanish the presidency say about a presidential statement. And I could already see just -- they didn't finish it yesterday and then the presidency ended and we have a new president today in Syria.

QUESTION: Talk about (inaudible).

SECRETARY POWELL: Don't be too sure. Don't be too sure. But we're reviewing it constantly, and presidential statement resolution, but we're taking our time. I'm taking my time. I don't find that there's any particular time pressure on this deliberation. And many of my Security Council colleagues are sort of taking August at a slightly slower pace than I usually take August.

QUESTION: Thank you very much. There's a lot of talk on the Hill that we're traveling with the Saudis. A) How much of a mistake would it be if the Senate got together, got the authority in terms of votes that it needed to declassify the now infamous 28 pages? And B) is our relationship with the Saudis now, our current relationship, is that sustainable?

SECRETARY POWELL: On the first question, President doesn't leave -- it should be classified at this time. Maybe it will change at some point in the future. That remains the administration's position.

Our relationship with the Saudis is a good one. They gave us support during the Iraq war through use of facilities and whatnot. They have become much more aggressive in the global war on terrorism. They are a major oil producer in that part of the world, and they make sure that there is a steady supply of petroleum that we need. We pressed them to change some things they have done in the past with respect to how charitable contributions have previously been funded -- been funneled to certain religious organizations that are teaching more than religion. And they have been responsive to our concerns.

We had a number of child custody cases that a difference of approach and policy would resolve a number of them. There are many more yet to be resolved and we're working with the Saudis in a cooperative manner. They were very helpful in the Sharm el Sheik summit as we got the roadmap underway. And so I think we have a good relationship with the Saudis. They are doing more for us and we -- when they are disagreements or policies that we think they need to take another look at, we engage with them as friends of 50 years.

Okay, guys, have a good weekend. Have a good summer.

(end transcript)

(Distributed by the Bureau of International Information Programs, U.S. Department of State. Web site: http://usinfo.state.gov)

http://usinfo.state.gov/xarchives/display.html?p=washfile-english&y=2003&m=August&x=20030803182804uhp0.7937128&t=usinfo/wf-latest.html
7 posted on 08/04/2003 2:40:17 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad... Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach; Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; ...
Powell Discusses North Korea, Iran, War on Terrorism

August 03, 2003
US Department of States
Washington File

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/957730/posts?page=7#7

"If you want on or off this Iran ping list, Freepmail me”
8 posted on 08/04/2003 2:41:17 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad... Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn; nuconvert; dixiechick2000; RaceBannon; freedom44; Eala; AdmSmith; ewing; risk; Valin; ...
Iran calls for US pullout from Gulf

Press Trust of India
Manila, August 4

Iran on Monday urged US troops to leave the Gulf region and rejected Washington's accusations that it is running a clandestine nuclear weapons programme.
"Neither Iran nor the countries in the region... feel comfortable with foreign troops in the region," Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi told reporters on a visit to the Philippines.

"We hope the situation comes that the foreign troops, including the Americans, will leave ... Because the security and stability of the region would be safeguarded by the countries in the region."

He said "the best remedy for the regional instability" is cooperation among the Gulf states.

Asefi also rejected US accusations that his country is involved in clandestine nuclear weapons programs, saying, "We are not looking for any military nuclear activity."

"That is out of the question. ... We are not thinking that way," he said. "We are having a very good cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency. We are ready to continue that."

Iran, which insists its nuclear program is for peaceful, electrical power purposes, has said it would agree to unfettered inspections by the Vienna-based IAEA if it is granted access to advanced nuclear technology as provided for under the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/news/181_328935,0005.htm
9 posted on 08/04/2003 3:37:36 AM PDT by F14 Pilot
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To: DoctorZIn; RaceBannon; dixiechick2000; nuconvert; freedom44; Eala
Iran calls for U.S. pullout from Gulf, denies acquiring nuclear weapons

(08-04) 01:32 PDT MANILA, Philippines (AP)

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/news/archive/2003/08/04/state0432EDT0023.DTL
10 posted on 08/04/2003 3:41:06 AM PDT by F14 Pilot
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To: DoctorZIn
http://www.lasvegassun.com/sunbin/stories/w-me/2003/aug/04/080404121.html

Iran Parliament Vote Provokes Opposition

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) - A vote by Iran's reformist-dominated parliament to join an international agreement on women's rights is provoking bitter denunciation from hard-line clerics.

Over the weekend, dozens of clerics in the holy city of Qom held street protests on Friday and Saturday against parliament's vote in favor of Iran joining the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women.

The parliament approved the convention on July 23. The vote has to be endorsed by the unelected, hard-line controlled Guardian Council to become law. The council, which must approve all legislation before it becomes law, is likely to reject it.

11 posted on 08/04/2003 8:57:23 AM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: DoctorZIn
http://www.guardian.co.uk/iran/story/0,12858,1011846,00.html

Iran's hardliners step up arrests of activists
Dan De Luce, Tehran Monday August 4, 2003

Iran's hardline clergy has begun arresting and interrogating journalists, students and political activists in a new attempt to intimidate opposition before next year's parliamentary elections.
In the most extensive wave of detentions in recent years, plainclothes security agents have detained hundreds of student activists as well as journalists and reformist commentators.

"This is not a new process," Reza Yousefian, an MP in the reformist movement, told the Guardian. "But it has accelerated. They want to prepare themselves for the next round of parliamentary elections. (excerpt)

12 posted on 08/04/2003 9:08:53 AM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: DoctorZIn
Wow! That's very disturbing, Dr.Z.

Thanks!
13 posted on 08/04/2003 9:27:26 AM PDT by dixiechick2000 ("The Prez is as focused as a doberman on a hambone!"---Dennis Miller)
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To: F14 Pilot
"Iran calls for U.S. pullout from Gulf"

That won't happen...

Thanks for the post, F14 Pilot.

Good to see you!

14 posted on 08/04/2003 9:32:19 AM PDT by dixiechick2000 ("The Prez is as focused as a doberman on a hambone!"---Dennis Miller)
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
Good posts!

Thank you!
15 posted on 08/04/2003 9:36:06 AM PDT by dixiechick2000 ("The Prez is as focused as a doberman on a hambone!"---Dennis Miller)
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To: F14 Pilot
Iran: Khomeini's Grandson Calls For New Revolution

Prague, 4 August 2003 (RFE/RL) -- The eldest grandson of the late Iranian revolutionary leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini (pictured) has called on Iranians to launch an attack on the current regime.

The London-based Arabic language newspaper "Al-Sharq al-Awsat" quoted 46-year-old Hussein Khomeini as saying: "Iran needs a new democratic regime that does not use religion to suppress the people."

The paper said that Khomeini made the remark from his residence in Al-Najaf, Iraq. Hussein Khomeini said his grandfather's successors in power in Tehran have abused the ayatollah's name to legitimize unjust regimes. He predicted Iran would soon face a new revolution.

The paper said that Khomeini, who sympathizes with the reformists and student protestors in Iran, has moved into a house in Al-Najaf once used by his grandfather when he was living in exile.

The Tehran office of the late Ayatollah Khomeini today vehemently denied the press reports, saying that Hussein Khomeini must have been misquoted.

Meanwhile in Tehran, Iranian President Mohammad Khatami warned today against what he called a danger of Islamic "fascism" in Iran.

The official Iranian news agency IRNA quoted Khatami as making the statement during a joint session of parliament and his cabinet yesterday.

Khatami said that the aim of the Islamic revolution is not to institutionalize fascism in the name of Islam and revolution or to brand anybody outside this framework as anti-Islamic and counterrevolutionary.

Hardliners in the Iranian regime have used their control of the judiciary to arrest scores of liberal activists on vague charges of disloyalty to Islamic and revolutionary values. They have also repeatedly closed reformist newspapers.


source http://www.rferl.org/nca/features/2003/08/04082003124336.asp

Comment: Expect more on the secular line from Najaf the coming weeks. The religious hegemony from Qom is doomed.
16 posted on 08/04/2003 9:45:07 AM PDT by AdmSmith
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To: All
Good Morning

You've been busy.
Thank you.
Sorry I can't stay, but I'll be back later.
17 posted on 08/04/2003 9:57:27 AM PDT by nuconvert
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To: DoctorZIn
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/3122347.stm

UN seeks snap Iran inspections
Talks on inspections without notice of Iran's nuclear facilities have begun in Tehran.
A team of legal experts from the UN's nuclear watchdog is seeking to persuade it to drop opposition to such visits.

Iran said in the past it would only agree to them if it was granted more access to nuclear technology.
(excerpt)
18 posted on 08/04/2003 10:27:52 AM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: AdmSmith
Re #16

I hope that Hussein Khomeini have a secure residence. Perhaps inside the American military base.:) I read from another post that Pasdaran goons are looking for him in Iraq.

19 posted on 08/04/2003 10:30:05 AM PDT by TigerLikesRooster
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To: TigerLikesRooster
I read from another post that Pasdaran goons are looking for him in Iraq.

Do you have a link to that post?
20 posted on 08/04/2003 12:09:36 PM PDT by AdmSmith
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To: AdmSmith
Here it is
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/957968/posts
21 posted on 08/04/2003 12:13:17 PM PDT by AdmSmith
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To: DoctorZIn
SMCCDI: Security measures increased in Iranian cities

Aug 4, 2003

Security measures have been increased, since this evening, in most Iranian cities as many Iranians are intending to celebrate, from the early hours of Tuesday morning, the 97th anniversary of the banned Constitutional Revolution of 1906.

Patrols have been increased the Capital and most main provincial cities in order to stop vehicles for ID check and the search of passangers.

The areas most under special watch of the Capital are the Baharestan square, Rey, Majidieh, Tehran Pars, Tajrish, Vali e Asr and Guisha. Same increase of surveillance have been reported from cities, such as Esfahan, Tabriz, Mashad and Shiraz.

Many groups of young freedom fighters have created quantities of hand made detonation devices and will start to use them in the early hours of the morning and during the popular gatherings which will take place later on Tuesday.

The 1906 Constitutional Revolution was an unprecedented move which created the path for the creation of a Nation-State based on Secularism and Modernism in Iran. Clerics have always tried to undermine its legacies as contrary to their illegitimate power.

http://www.daneshjoo.org/generalnews/article/publish/article_1560.shtml
22 posted on 08/04/2003 2:42:30 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad... Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach; Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; ...
SMCCDI: Security measures increased in Iranian cities
Aug 4, 2003

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/957730/posts?page=22#22

"If you want on or off this Iran ping list, Freepmail me”
23 posted on 08/04/2003 2:43:28 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad... Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn
"hand made detonation devices"

What would that be?

24 posted on 08/04/2003 2:45:07 PM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: All
State Dept. Changes Seen if Bush Reelected

August 04, 2003
The Washington Post
Glenn Kessler

Secretary of State Colin L. Powell and his deputy, Richard L. Armitage, have signaled to the White House that they intend to step down even if President Bush is reelected, setting the stage for a substantial reshaping of the administration's national security team that has remained unchanged through the September 2001 terrorist attacks, two wars and numerous other crises.

Armitage recently told national security adviser Condoleezza Rice that he and Powell will leave on Jan. 21, 2005, the day after the next presidential inauguration, sources familiar with the conversation said. Powell has indicated to associates that a commitment made to his wife, rather than any dismay at the administration's foreign policy, is a key factor in his desire to limit his tenure to one presidential term.

Rice and Deputy Defense Secretary Paul D. Wolfowitz are the leading candidates to replace Powell, according to sources inside and outside the administration. Rice appears to have an edge because of her closeness to the president, though it is unclear whether she would be interested in running the State Department's vast bureaucracy.

With 18 months left in Bush's current term, many officials said talk of a new foreign policy team is highly premature -- particularly because Bush's reelection is not assured. No one inside or outside the administration agreed to be quoted by name or affiliation in discussing possible Cabinet choices. But on the eve of the country's first post-Sept. 11, 2001, presidential campaign, in which foreign affairs will play a prominent role, the national security lineup for a second Bush term is already a major topic of conversation, at least among those who make and analyze U.S. foreign policy.

Indeed, Director of Central Intelligence George J. Tenet is already the third longest serving CIA chief and is expected to depart, perhaps before the current term ends. Tenet's role in the Iraq weapons controversy has led to calls on Capitol Hill for his dismissal, fueling speculation he will quit soon.

The current administration has been characterized by fierce policy disputes, often between Powell and more hawkish members, and a reshuffling likely would significantly change the tenor and character of the foreign policy team.

Although Bush appears to value the range of opinions he has received from his chief national security advisers, he may feel free if he wins a second term to realign his foreign policy more closely to the harder-edged, conservative view exemplified by Vice President Cheney and Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, according to Zbigniew Brzezinski, President Jimmy Carter's national security adviser.

Powell has staffed key positions in the State Department with close associates, and many of those officials also are expected to leave at the beginning of a second Bush term, giving the new secretary of state the opportunity to substantially re-staff the department.

Some observers have speculated that Powell, who made an extensive presentation before the United Nations in February on Iraq's weapons of mass destruction before the war, has been embarrassed by the failure to find much evidence of chemical, biological or nuclear weapons programs. But Powell, both publicly and privately, has said he has no regrets about his comments to the Security Council, arguing that they hold up well if read carefully.

Powell has declined to answer questions about his plans. "I serve at the pleasure of the president," he said last month. "That's the only answer I've ever given to that question, no matter what form it comes in."

Bush recently named Rice as his personal representative on the Middle East conflict, a move that some State Department officials view as an audition for secretary of state. Republican political operatives have also touted Rice as a possible candidate in the 2006 race for California governor.

But Rice's image has been tarnished by the fallout over the administration's use of intelligence about Iraq's weapons, raising questions about her scrutiny of the materials and the veracity of her public statements.

Rice "is an honest, fabulous person, and America is lucky to have her service, period," Bush said at a news conference before departing for his August vacation.

Wolfowitz, the administration's foreign policy intellectual and prime advocate of a confrontation with Iraq, would be a more daring and controversial choice. A senior Senate Democrat said Wolfowitz would have little trouble winning confirmation in a Republican-controlled Senate. But others said that because Wolfowitz is considered more of a strategic thinker than a manager, he could be tapped as Rice's replacement as national security adviser if she became secretary of state or entered politics.

Long-shot candidates for secretary would include Sen. Richard G. Lugar (R-Ind.), the centrist chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee who is a strong supporter of Powell. Lugar is so respected by Democrats that his name was also floated during the Clinton administration.

Another dark horse is former House speaker Newt Gingrich. The Georgia Republican appears to be openly campaigning for the job, arguing in speeches and in a recent Foreign Policy magazine article that the State Department under Powell has failed to adequately support Bush's policies.

Among other key members of the foreign policy team, Rumsfeld is deeply involved in modernizing the military, as well as in the Pentagon's ongoing operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, and appears willing to stay on beyond the start of a second term, officials said.

If Rice became secretary of state, that would open up another key slot -- national security adviser. Although Wolfowitz is considered a strong possibility, Rice's deputy, Stephen J. Hadley, could move up, much as Samuel R. "Sandy" Berger did when President Bill Clinton won a second term.

Officials also said another strong candidate is I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, Cheney's chief of staff and already a principal foreign policy adviser inside the White House.

A dark-horse candidate for national security adviser is Steve Biegun, chief foreign affairs aide to Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.), who is said to have impressed Bush when he served as executive secretary of the National Security Council early on in the administration.

There appear to be few obvious choices for a new CIA director. Armitage, known as a sharp manager willing to tackle tough projects, is viewed by some officials as the ideal replacement for Tenet. But Armitage has insisted to others that he will leave the administration on the same day as Powell, one of his closest friends.

Rep. Porter J. Goss (R-Fla.), chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and a former CIA case officer, is considered a strong possibility, as is Wolfowitz if he is not tapped for secretary of state or national security adviser.

Two mid-level administration officials who could move up are Stephen A. Cambone, undersecretary of defense for intelligence, and Richard L. Haver, assistant to Rumsfeld on intelligence (and to Cheney when he was defense secretary in the administration of President George H.W. Bush).

Air Force Lt. Gen. Michael V. Hayden, head of the National Security Agency, and retired Adm. William O. Studeman, a former NSA director and former CIA deputy director, are regarded as highly qualified for the job.

Two retired senators who served on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence -- Warren B. Rudman (R-N.H.) and Fred D. Thompson (R-Tenn.) -- are considered long-shot candidates for CIA director. But Thompson, a sometime actor who now appears in the television series "Law and Order," has one unusual attribute: He already played the CIA director in the 1987 Kevin Costner movie "No Way Out."

http://iranvajahan.net/cgi-bin/news_en.pl?l=en&y=2003&m=08&d=04&a=6
25 posted on 08/04/2003 2:45:26 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad... Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn
U.S. Cooperating with Shiites in Iraq

August 04, 2003
World Tribune.com
worldtribune.com

The United States is apparently cooperating with Shi'ite insurgents in helping quell attacks against the military in Iraq, according to a new report.

The report in Middle East Intelligence Bulletin said the U.S. military might be cooperating with the Islamic Call Party, or Hizb Al Daawa Al Islamiya, regarded as having been one of the most formidable opponents of the former Iraqi regime of Saddam Hussein. The report said Washington might be acquiring information from Al Daawa on insurgents, particularly in the Shi'ite community.

Little is known of Al Daawa's organizational structure. But the group has been credited with numerous attacks on the Saddam regime, including seven attempts to assassinate the president and the near-fatal shooting of his son, Uday, Middle East Newsline reported. Uday and Qusay were killed in a U.S. military strike in Mosul in July.

"There are also some indications that the party may be cooperating with the United States in rooting out armed resistance," the report said. "A recent statement by an anti-American Iraqi nationalist group accused Al Daawa of treason for 'informing the occupation forces about the resistance forces.'"

The report said the Shi'ite group differs from most of the emerging movements in Iraq. Al Daawa has expressed its opposition to a hasty U.S. withdrawal from Iraq and criticized the imposition of Islamic law in Shi'ite areas.

"Hizb Al Daawa has proved itself to be an adaptable and resilient ideological movement and activist network," the report, authored by Iranian analyst Mahan Abedin, said. "Its main challenge will be transforming itself from a secretive cell-based organization into a popular political party."

Al Daawa, regarded as the oldest Shi'ite political movement in Iraq, has refused to formally cooperate with the United States and did not join the anti-Saddam coalition organized by Washington. But in January 2003 Al Daawa leader Ibrahim Al Jaafari traveled to the United States and met presidential adviser Zalmay Khalilzad.

The report said Al Daawa, which attacked U.S. interests in the 1980s, has emerged in central and southern Iraq and organized the first demonstrations against the U.S. military presence in the city of Nasseriya.

At the same time, Al Daawa was said to have rejected Iranian attempts to dominate the Shi'ite community in Iraq.

"For the United States, Al Daawa represents both peril and promise," the report said. "While the movement has refused to endorse American intervention in Iraq, it has also refused to subordinate itself to Iran.

http://www.worldtribune.com/worldtribune/
26 posted on 08/04/2003 2:47:17 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad... Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach; Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; ...
U.S. Cooperating with Shiites in Iraq

August 04, 2003
World Tribune.com

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/957730/posts?page=26#26

"If you want on or off this Iran ping list, Freepmail me”
27 posted on 08/04/2003 2:48:35 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad... Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn
BUMP for Iran - may things change for the better soon!
28 posted on 08/04/2003 2:49:15 PM PDT by dandelion
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran Warns Of Possible Oil Price Collapse

August 04, 2003
Dow Jones Newswires
Nasdaq Headlines

LONDON -- Iran's oil minister says oil prices could collapse if the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries doesn't get cooperation from non-OPEC countries once Iraqi crude exports reach significant levels.

"Production increases by non-OPEC countries and a failure by OPEC to cut output while Iraqi oil returns to the market will see oil prices collapsing," OPEC's official news agency, Opecna, reported Iranian Petroleum Minister Bijan Namdar Zangeneh as saying.

He said the speed and extent of Iraq's return to the oil markets remains unclear.

"It is impossible at present to exactly project the future shape of Iraqi (oil) production, but OPEC will decide on the Organization's output in case of any change in Iraq's production," the Iranian News Agency IRNA quoted him as saying.

OPEC is scheduled to meet in Vienna on Sept. 24 to review the market and supply and demand forecasts, in its bid to keep prices within the group's target range of $22-$28 a barrel for the OPEC basket of seven crudes.

Iraq's oil production is estimated to be around 1 million barrels a day, compared with its pre-war capacity of 2.8 million b/d.

http://iranvajahan.net/cgi-bin/news_en.pl?l=en&y=2003&m=08&d=04&a=8
29 posted on 08/04/2003 2:50:00 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad... Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn
Intelligence Officer: Iran Could have Nuclear Weapons by 2005

August 04, 2003
Ha'aretz
Ha'aretz Service and Reuters

Iran will soon complete its program for achieving a basic ability to create nuclear weapons that will be operational by 2005, Israel Radio quoted a senior military intelligence officer as telling the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee on Monday.

The Los Angeles Times reported Monday that Iran appears to be in the late stages of building a nuclear bomb and has sought help from scientists in Russia, China, North Korea and Pakistan.

Shimon Briarsky, a former intelligence official in charge of Iranian affairs, urged the United States to exert "massive" diplomatic pressure on Iran to stop it from developing a nuclear bomb.

The U.S. has "a window of a year and a half, two years," Briarsky told Army Radio on Monday. "Not for military action, for diplomatic action that would start with diplomatic pressure and continue with involving the [United Nations] Security Council - massive pressure on the Iranians to destroy and neutralize what they have attained."

Citing its own three-month investigation into Iran's clandestine nuclear capacity, the Times said it had strong evidence Iran's commercial program masked a plan to become the world's next nuclear power and it was "much closer to producing a bomb than Iraq ever was."

Iran has consistently denied it has plans to build nuclear weapons and has said its program is for peaceful civilian use.

The Times, in the story from Vienna, said it was unclear when Iran might produce its first atomic weapons. Some experts thought two to three years was likely while others believed the Iranian government had probably not given a final go-ahead.

In Vienna, a spokesman for the International Atomic Energy Agency declined to comment on the story. "We do not comment on media reports," spokesman Lothar Wedekind told Reuters.

The story cited a confidential report by the French government in May it said concluded Iran was "surprisingly close" to having enriched uranium or plutonium for a bomb.

Reuters last month reported that UN nuclear inspectors found traces of enriched uranium in environmental samples taken during recent inspections in Iran.

Foreign intelligence officials told the Times the CIA had briefed them on a contingency plan for U.S. air and missile attacks against Iranian nuclear installations.

"It would be foolish not to present the commander in chief with all of the options, including that one," one of the officials was quoted as saying. The CIA declined comment on such a plan to the paper.

The newspaper said North Korean military scientists were recently monitored entering Iranian nuclear facilities and were assisting in the design of a nuclear warhead.

A Middle Eastern intelligence official was also quoted as saying Pakistan's role in helping Iran develop a nuclear program was "bigger from the beginning than we thought."

Russian scientists, sometimes traveling to Iran under false identities and working without their government's approval, were also helping to complete a special reactor that could produce weapons-grade plutonium, the paper said.

Tehran has also imported 1.8 tons of nuclear material from China in 1991 and processed some of it to manufacture uranium metal, the report said.

Another indicator Iran was in the late stages of weapons development was the fact that Tehran recently approached European companies to buy devices that could manipulate large volumes of radio-active material, technology to forge uranium metal and plutonium and switches that could trigger a nuclear weapon.

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/pages/ShArt.jhtml?itemNo=325516&contrassID=1&subContrassID=8&sbSubContrassID=0&listSrc=Y
30 posted on 08/04/2003 2:51:14 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad... Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach; Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; ...
Intelligence Officer: Iran Could have Nuclear Weapons by 2005

August 04, 2003
Ha'aretz
Ha'aretz Service and Reuters

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/957730/posts?page=30#30

"If you want on or off this Iran ping list, Freepmail me”
31 posted on 08/04/2003 2:52:22 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad... Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran to Keep al-Qaida Captives

August 04, 2003
Toronto Star
The Associated Press

TEHRAN -- Iran said today it won't hand over its senior al-Qaida captives to the United States and denied reports it hopes to swap the detainees for U.S.-held Iranian opposition figures.

"We hand over al-Qaida operatives who belong to friendly countries or countries we have signed extradition treaties (with). We don't have an extradition treaty with the United States," government spokesman Abdollah Ramezanzadeh told reporters.

Iranian officials confirmed for the first time last month that the country is holding "a large number of small and big elements of al-Qaida." Tehran did not identify them.

Ramezanzadeh also refused to name any of the detainees, and rejected reports that Tehran may swap al-Qaida members with leaders of the Iraq-based armed Iranian opposition group, the People's Mujahedeen, who are under U.S. control in Iraq.

"We will take members of the hypocrites (Iran's reference to People's Mujahedeen) from America if they offer, but there is no talk of swap. We don't treat the issue of terrorism selectively, nor do we make deals," Ramezanzadeh said.

U.S. officials have said intelligence suggests that al-Qaida figures in Iran include Saif al-Adl, a top al-Qaida agent possibly connected to the May 12 bombings in Riyadh; Abu Mohammed al-Masri, wanted in connection with the bombings of two U.S. Embassies in East Africa in 1998; Abu Musab Zarqawi, whom some U.S. officials describe as the key link between al-Qaida and Saddam Hussein; and Saad bin Laden, the son of al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden.

Many al-Qaida operatives are believed to have fled to Iran after the overthrow of the Taliban regime in neighbouring Afghanistan in late 2001.

Iran said earlier it was holding talks with foreign intelligence services, including Britain's, over the fate of detained al-Qaida members. Iran has also said it would hand over to Saudi Arabia any Saudis among the detained suspects.

Earlier this year, Iran said it had extradited more than 500 al-Qaida members to their homelands in Arab, European and African countries.

The United States last month repeated its accusations that Iran and Syria harbour terrorists, a charge both deny.


http://www.thestar.com/NASApp/cs/ContentServer?GXHC_gx_session_id_=a1a5ad796521c5a6&pagename=thestar/Layout/Article_Type1&c=Article&cid=1059994927382&call_pageid=968332188492&col=968705899037
32 posted on 08/04/2003 2:55:23 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad... Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach; Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; ...
Iran to Keep al-Qaida Captives

August 04, 2003
Toronto Star
The Associated Press

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/957730/posts?page=32#32

"If you want on or off this Iran ping list, Freepmail me”
33 posted on 08/04/2003 2:56:29 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad... Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn
More on al-Da'wah:
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/947630/posts?page=31#31

34 posted on 08/04/2003 3:23:33 PM PDT by AdmSmith
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To: DoctorZIn
Iraq's oil production is our bargaining chip.

Theirs seems to be the Al-Queda guys they say they have!
35 posted on 08/04/2003 6:54:40 PM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach (All we need from a Governor is a VETO PEN!!!)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach
Japan Ignores US On Iran Oil Deal

04.08.2003 08:38

Iran and Japan are continuing their negotiations about the $2 billion development of the Azadegan oil field.

There was no initial deal within the deadline due to US pressure to block the venture.

Iran wanted to keep the door open for several Japanese companies but it is not clear when a deal can be struck.

It is expected that negotiations could be closed by the end of the year. However, Japan is still afraid of repercussions from Washington.

http://www.neftegaz.ru/english/lenta/show.php?id=38301
36 posted on 08/04/2003 7:24:53 PM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad... Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: DoctorZIn
Many of Us Agree with You, & Follow events in Iran with Great Interest.

BUT

You Present us with TOO MUCH "VERBIAGE!!"

MAKE YOUR POINT, & then "Document It" with Lesser Posts.

MOST OF US are "On Your Side!!"

"The Details," while Interesting, are NOT as Important as the "Salient Points!!"

PLEASE, SIR, "Give Us the "Skinney," & report the Supporting Facts--in Detail--Later!!

You're Doing Good!!--just give Us a While to "Absorb" "The Details" AFTER you "Hit Us" with "The Good Stuff!!"

Doc

37 posted on 08/04/2003 7:41:45 PM PDT by Doc On The Bay
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
Hi.

Did someone call me?
38 posted on 08/04/2003 8:52:05 PM PDT by nuconvert
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To: Doc On The Bay
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.
39 posted on 08/04/2003 9:05:42 PM PDT by nuconvert
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To: AdmSmith
Re #20

Here is a link:

Report: Grandson of Ayatollah Khomeini slams Iranian regime

the excerpts from the post:

...Meanwhile, the newspaper said a special unit from Iran's elite Revolutionary Guard, or Pasdaran, entered last week the Iraqi territory in search of Hussein Khomeini. The Revolutionary Guard's deputy commander, Mohammad Bagher Zolghadr, was quoted as saying that Hussein Khomeini should be eliminated.

40 posted on 08/04/2003 9:10:37 PM PDT by TigerLikesRooster
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To: nuconvert
Thank you.
41 posted on 08/04/2003 9:11:29 PM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: nuconvert
I'm on Your Side!!

Doc

42 posted on 08/04/2003 9:24:24 PM PDT by Doc On The Bay
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To: AdmSmith; nuconvert; dixiechick2000; RaceBannon
Re#16
I'd like to reply to grandson of Mr. Khomeini
I would ask:
Where have you been when people of Iran were getting killed and tortured by the devil agents of Khomeini in 1979 and 1980's?
You are not the right person to call for another revolution in Iran.
Go get a life some where else!
43 posted on 08/04/2003 9:29:25 PM PDT by F14 Pilot
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To: Doc On The Bay
Sorry. Your "verbiage" (verbal expression) I mistook for people's comments. I thought you were asking for less comments, more news.

Some days are slower news days than others.
Today was kind of overwhelming.
Made up for yesterday which was kind of slow.

Please feel free to join our discussion any time.
44 posted on 08/04/2003 9:38:28 PM PDT by nuconvert
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To: F14 Pilot
What a great reply! I hope someone will tell him that!
45 posted on 08/04/2003 9:40:47 PM PDT by dixiechick2000 ("The Prez is as focused as a doberman on a hambone!"---Dennis Miller)
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To: Doc On The Bay
Do you want more discussion, more opinions of Freepers posted?

Is your objection to the number of articles that are listed?

If you are on "our side", what is your complaint? If you could explain, I would appreciate it.
46 posted on 08/04/2003 9:46:32 PM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: dixiechick2000; DoctorZIn; RaceBannon; freedom44; AdmSmith
Commentary: Iran says protests hurt tech

By Mojdeh Sionit
Published 8/4/2003 5:49 PM

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 4 (UPI) -- Iran's leaders have developed a new political strategy seeking to discredit student protestors who rocked universities around the nation last June. They are accusing them of trying to undermine centers where science and technology, especially nuclear physics, is being taught to make Iran a major world power.

After two days of popular pro-reform demonstrations in Tehran, the Iranian Student News Agency on June 12 quoted Iran's Supreme Ayatollah Ali Khamenei as making this case.

Far from blaming the teaching of science for the riots, or criticizing it as being inimical in any way to the religious principles upon which the Islamic Republic was based, Khamenei emphasized the government's goal of supporting the teaching and application of science and technology. It was Iran's enemies, he said, who opposed this and wanted to discredit and undermine the institutions where these things were taught.

"The enemy has realized that young Iranian scientists have got to know about nuclear science and that is why they are threatening our universities by rioting," Khamenei said. "They want to prevent us from getting the opportunity to improve our knowledge."

Khamenei also claimed that the United States was behind all the unrest and rioting in Iran. "The enemies bluntly support those adventurers who can become their mercenaries by disturbing people's security," he said. "Thus, the whole nation, the youth and officials in particular, must remain vigilant."

The U.S. government had been forced to adopt a strategy of indirect subversion through encouraging the student protests because it could not directly challenge the unified determination of the Iranian people, Khamenei said.

"If the Americans had been able to eliminate the Islamic establishment, they would not have hesitated even for a day; but the enemy has realized that it cannot do anything against the valiant Iranian nation," he said.

The Iranian media also reflected growing official concern that the United States was acting energetically to initiate a policy of destabilization and eventual regime change in Iran.

On June 4, Iran's official Islamic Republic News Agency released a report from the city of Shiraz quoting a member of the national Expediency Council and former head of Parliament, Ali-Akbar Nateq Nouri, warning that "the United States would not move militarily against Iran but it would seek to overthrow Islamic system through internal popular uprisings."

Also on June 4, IRNA reported from the city of Hamedan that a representative of Supreme Guide Khamenei in the Revolutionary Guards named Mohammad Ali Movahedi Kermani had condemned the U.S. efforts to wage psychological warfare against the Islamic Republic.

Addressing a gathering to commemorate the anniversary of the death of the Islamic Republic's founder, Imam Ruhollah Khomeini, Movahedi Kermani rejected calls for major systematic reform.

"Change to the present system is not needed, but those favoring change should be expelled from the system," he said, according to the IRNA report.

While emphasizing Iranian unity in the face of student protests, the Iranian media also sought to discover and emphasize splits between the United States and its closest allies on policies towards their country.

The daily newspaper Hambastegi on June 12 quoted British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw, as saying that London opposed regime change in Iran. According to the report, Straw said British officials were trying hard to continue constructive negotiations and contacts with Iran.

The Tehran daily Entekhab also gave prominent coverage on June 4 to a report that U.S. officials had confessed they knew that Iran did not have any nuclear weapons and that the United States and Britain were split on policy towards the Islamic Republic. However, "Despite the confessions of U.S. officials that Iran has no nuclear weapons, (U.S. Defense Secretary) Donald Rumsfeld has claimed that Iran will soon have access to nuclear weapons," it said.

Iranian officials energetically hit out at Israel as well as the United States in the verbal war of claims and counter-claims over Iran's nuclear program. Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid-Reza Asefi, on June 10 blasted comments by Israel Prime Minister Ariel Sharon on Iran's nuclear activities as "ridiculous controversy and opportunism," IRNA said.

Iranian analysts have also interpreted the Bush administration's Middle East policies as part of a grand design to outflank and weaken major European nations that might otherwise challenge Washington.

Meanwhile, Iranian leaders expressed skepticism even on the -- to them -- rare occasions when prominent U.S. officials seemed to be holding out the hand of friendship rather than the closed fist of confrontation.

On June 12, IRNA reported that Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi made this point in his response to a relatively friendly statement two days earlier by U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell.

IRNA said Powell in his statement of June 8 had expressed Washington's desire to resume friendship with Iran, but "ironically not a single day passes without a new conspiracy emerging to tarnish the image of the Islamic Republic before the international community."

"If the United States desires friendship with Iran, it would naturally be expected not to interfere in Iranian domestic affairs and show respect for the decisions of the Iranian people and their values," Kharrazi said.

(Mojdeh Sionit is a former Iranian journalist now resident in the United States.)

http://www.upi.com/view.cfm?StoryID=20030804-033145-8583r
47 posted on 08/04/2003 10:08:28 PM PDT by F14 Pilot
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To: DoctorZIn; RaceBannon; dixiechick2000; nuconvert; yonif; Valin; freedom44; piasa; norton; ...
Iran Closes in on Building Nuke Bomb - Report
Mon Aug 4, 6:28 PM ET

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Iran appears to be in the late stages of building a nuclear bomb and has sought help from scientists in Russia................... More>>>

http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/nm/20030804/wl_nm/iran_nuclear_report_dc_2
48 posted on 08/04/2003 10:28:01 PM PDT by F14 Pilot (If God brings you to it, He will bring you through it.)
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To: DoctorZIn
This thread is now closed.

Join Us at the Iranian Alert -- August 5, 2003 -- LIVE THREAD PING LIST

Live Thread Ping List | 8.5.2003 | DoctorZin

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

49 posted on 08/05/2003 12:43:30 AM PDT by DoctorZIn (IranAzad... Until they are free, we shall all be Iranians!)
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
"Sigh!!"

NO, I am NOT objecting to ANYTHING on these Threads!!

You People are Promoting "Freedom" in a Country HORRIBLY OPPRESSED by a "Religious Sect" UNCONNECTED with Reality!!

My "Heart goes 'Out to You!!'" ~

My ONLY HOPE is that Citizens of Your Culture CONNECT WITH Western Reality, & SOMEHOW, INTERFACE WITH the Concept of "Reality" & "Western Reality," & SOMEHOW, ALL OF US "Reconcile" our Disparate Concepts of "Reality," & ALL of us Eventually understand the Utterly Foreign Concept of, "ISLAM!!"

50 posted on 08/05/2003 7:25:14 PM PDT by Doc On The Bay
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