Hostilities In Vain
TEHRAN, Aug. 6
Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei here on Wednesdaysaid despite the propaganda warfare that a global anti-Iran drive has been formed, Iran's enemies are only the US and Israel.
According to IRNA, Ayatollah Khamenei was addressing the heads of the threebranches of the government, chairman of State Expediency Council, cabinet members, MPs, judicial officials and senior military and police commanders of the country.
The leader noted that the US and Israel showed their hostility towards Iran from thevery beginning of the Islamic Revolution in different ways, such as the Nojeh coup attempt, Tabas military operations, encouraging Iraq to fight against Iran, rendering unconditional support to the former Baathist regime of Iraq during eight wars of war with Iran, attacking Iranian oil platforms, downing an Iranian airbus towards the end of the Iraq-imposed war and imposing various economic sanctions.
"Thanks to Almighty God, all these hostile efforts have been in vain so far," he said.
Ayatollah Khamenei underscored that the only way to withstand the enemies is by forging such a high level of national unity that the enemies would become automatically disappointed with their hostile approach.
Referring to the country's natural resources, the leader stressed that Iran has many potentials to undergo progress and development.
"The enemies of the Islamic Revolution have been forced to admit that Iran is among 10 countries of the world with access to the nuclear fuel cycle know-how he pointed out.
Ayatollah Khamenei pointed out that the Islamic system has succeeded in institutionalizing public participation in electoral undertakings.
"Serving the public under the banner of the Islamic system is source of honor. This glorious feeling should also be conveyed to the youth so that they also feel proud of living in Iran,despite all the enemies' propaganda," he concluded.
Iran Daily August 7, 2003
Siasat-e Rouz reflected on the rumors pertaining to a widening rift among reformist groupings. The paper asserted that veteran reformers argue that the newly-formed reformist entities are extremely radical and that they have a poor track record. How is that the vanguards of the reform movement have only recently spoken about the shabby performance of new reformist groups?" asked the paper.
More senior reformers actually blame the new reformers for the existing economic shortfalls, it added. It claimed that because the public did not vote for reformers the way they were expected in the course of City Council elections last March, some reformist groups, such as the Assembly of Combatant Clerics, have decided to regain people's support by blaming all the existing problems on the so-called neo- reformers.
Yas-e Nou covered the statements of President Mohammad Khatami during his recent meeting with MPs and cabinet mem bers. The paper recalled that the president's remarks have received a mixed reaction. In fact, Khatami's comments could be assessed from two different angles; namely the people whom the chief executive addressed and also the content of his speech, it asserted. It must be clearly understood that the people who were addressed by Khatami are not those whom he expects to win their votes in the next presidential elections, because he cannot become president for another time, it maintained. The crux of the matter is that what Khatami said revealed his concern about the ongoing plots masterminded against the Islamic system and Islam, it highlighted.
Resalat in an editorial wrote that the recent standpoint adopted by US President George W. Bush with regard to Iran's nuclear activities was not completely covered inside the country. Bush said that the US wants to pressure Iran to stop its nuclear activities by seeking assistance from the European Union (EU) and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), it recalled. The paper noted that Bush also intends to force the 18 European member-states of the IAEA's Board of Directors to issue an anti-Iran resolution in an upcoming meeting.
Nasim-e Saba in a political commentary discussed the issue of Iran's joining the UN Convention for Removing All Forms of Discriminations Against Women. The Majlis and reformers came under attack by those who consider the Majlis ratification, which urges Iran to join the convention, to be contradictory to Islamic tenets, it stated. The main issue at stake is not what the Majlis has done, but rather that efforts are still underway to portray that the incumbent Majlis and the reformist camp are incompetent, argued the daily.
Amid all this, some ruling elite insist our adminis trators should have "absolute power" and be off limits to "criticism" which actually means "account- ability".
But is this not contradictory to the lofty notion of a religious-democracy?
Sections of the officialdom should realize that the survival of the system largely depends on transparency and putting the performance of senior officials to the full glare of public scrutiny.
The fact remains that constructive criticism is no longer an issue of political or any other convenience. It is a strong and undisputed necessity if we really want to build our country, know our flaws and move forward with confidence, honor, and dignity.
Those who think otherwise should be great enough to do a service to themselves and the nation. The need to get out of the way and kiss politics and economics goodbye.
Learning From Criticism
TEHRAN, Aug. 6--President Mohammad Khatami here on Tuesday called on the nation to continue the historical movement for establishing democracy.
Speaking at a meeting with members of the Scientific Committee and the Headquarters for Commemorating the Centenary of the Constitution Movement, he referred to the Constitution Movement as a sym bol of the will and determination of the Iranian nation in the past century to materialize democra cy. He added that though people's attempts failed for various rea sons, the nation never stopped its campaign even after the constitu tion was established, IRNA reported.
Turning to Iran as a forerunner in establishing a democratic system in the region, Khatami said, "I believe that the major success achieved by mankind in the field of human sciences was that power, which is a material con cept, should be harnessed in accordance with a nation's will and determination."
Referring to the democratic rule of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) at the outset of Islam, the presi- dent regretted that in practice and similar to the history of other communities, the prophet's demo cratic legacy was violated by powerful empires and eventually replaced by the prevalent system which ignored the national will.
Khatami noted that Iran's Constitution is rooted in the peo- ple's Islamic and national beliefs and marks the historical maturity of a nation determined to release itself from the grip of dictator ship linked to foreign powers.
Turning to traditionalism and western concepts as the major factors behind the Constitution's failure, he reiterated that tradi tionalists and western-oriented groups interfered with the move ment in the name of religion and freedom, and sidelined moderate reformists such as Allameh Naini.
"Unfortunately, our contempo rary community suffers from extremism and needs to be mod erated to help meet people's demands," he declared.
Pakistan Denies Nuke Assistance
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan, Aug. 6--Pakistan has rejected as "completely false, irresponsible and motivated" a US media report alleging Pakistani assistance to Iran in the latter's alleged enrichment program, IRNA reported.
"Such reports appear part of a malicious campaign against Pakistan's consistent and established record of safeguarding its sensitive nuclear technology and ensur- ing that this technology was not transferred by any orga- nization or individual to any other country," a foreign office spokesman said Tuesday.
He was responding to a question regarding a news report in the US, alleging Pakistan's assistance to an alleged Iranian enrichment program.
The spokesman said the allegation had already been denied at the highest level.
"Pakistan's commitments, affirmed at the highest level that it would not export any sensitive technologies to third countries, remain unquestionable. Pakistan has a strong export control regime in place. Pakistan's record in this regard is impeccable," he added.
With regard to Abdul Qadeer Khan, the spokesman said, "Pakistan's prominent scientist had never set foot in Iran or ever met with any Iranian nuclear experts. The false allegation by the so-called defector from Iran that A.Q. Khan had a villa on the Caspian Sea further demonstrated the baseless and fabricated nature of these wild flights of fancy."
Call for Tracking Journalist's Killer
TEHRAN, Aug. 6--Wife of Iranian journalist Mahmoud Saremi, who was killed by Talibanmilitia when they captured Mazar-i-Sharif,urged the Iranian government to identify the killer of her husband. Khadijeh Rouzbahanisaid here on Wednesday that those who were behind Saremi's death have not yet been identified since five years ago.
She went on to say that theambiguities surrounding Saremi's death add to the great sorrow of his death.
"I expect the officials to help Saremi's family to visit Mazar-i-Sharif in Afghanistan, where he was killed,lt she said.
Born in 1968 in Boroujerd, Saremi worked at the state news agency IRNA as an expert in 1992. He was sent to Afghanistan in 1996 as the head of IRNA bureau in Kabul and undertook the responsibility of disseminating news and developments about the war-torn country.
Saremi was killed on August 7, 1998, along with eight Iranian diplomats. The day is annually marked in Iran as Journalist Day.
UK Unions Slam US Policies
LONDON, Aug. 6--British labor unions have been urged to voice their opposition to US threats against Iran in the annual congress slated for next month.
According to IRNA, they are also expected to con- demn the US-led war against Saddam Hussein's Iraq and call for the end of the war-ravaged country's occu pation.
The congress, which represents some seven million British laborers, will also emphasize the necessity of administering justice in occupied Palestine.
In a communiqué on the threshold of their annual meeting, British labor unions denounced US efforts to put pressure on such independent states as Iran, Syria and Cuba to change their regimes. It added that the US- led war on Iraq further destabilized the Middle East region and gave rise to the possibility of acts of terror worldwide.
Kharrazi Sympathizes With Russian Victims
MOSCOW, Aug. 6--
Iran's Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi has expressed condolences over an explosion at a Russian military hospital, which claimed at least 50 lives.
In a message to his Russian counterpart Igor Ivanov, a copy of which was faxed to IRNA officehere, the Iranian foreign minister regretted theblast and hoped for an end to such incidents.
"With deep regret, I condole your Excellency and the Russian nation, especially the bereaved families, over the deathof several Russian nationals in the tragic Mozdok hospital incident in North Ossetia," Kharrazi said.
"I hope that the existing crises will end in favor of the peace-loving Russian people in the wake of helpful conciliatory negotiations."
A vehicle packed withexplosives blew up outside a hospital in a Russian region bordering Chechnya on August 1, killing at least 20 people.
Mozdok, North Ossetia, was the base for Russian troops when they entered Chechnya to deal with a separatist rebellion in 1999.
Mozdok was also the scene of a suicide bombing two months ago when a woman blew herself up killing 18 people, mainly military pilots on a bus in the outskirts of the town.
Jakarta Bomb BlastsCondemned
Meanwhile, Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi here on Wednesday condemned a bomb blast at a hotel in Jakarta which left at least 15 people dead and tens others injured. The massive explosion at the Marriott Hotel in Jakarta on Thursday was caused by a car bomb.
Expressing Iran's sympathy with the Indonesian government and the families of the victims, Asefi said that such inhuman and illegal acts only incite anger and hatred.
Secular Systems Cannot Survive
HAMEDAN, Aug. 6--A senior cleric said secular ruling systems can no longer survive as human beings realize the futile nature of the world minus the here after.
Leader's representative and Shiraz Friday prayer leader, Ayatollah Mohieddin Haeri-Shirazi, added that many are of the view that "religious establishments are on the verge of extinction, while this is the beginning of religious rule in the world".
"In the current age, human beings have figured out what futility is and those who wrongly believe that spir- ituality is a thing of the past must know that mankind has made new attempts for greater familiarization with the creator," he analyzed.
The senior cleric also noted that while criminal and brutal acts are on the rise worldwide, man's endeavors to find the truth has also improved significantly.
Haeri-Shirazi pointed out that the man of today does not voice strong opposition to secularist thoughts, although religious rationality has greatly improved. He went on to say that the enemy has resorted to economic means to lure the youth away from the 1979 Islamic Revolution's lofty ideals.
Ganji in hospital
TEHRAN, Aug. 6--
Relatives of prominent political activist Akbar Ganji said he has been taken to hospital from prison on Monday after his health deteriorated, the student news agency ISNA reported.
They also said that thejailed journalist was medically treated in the prison before he was transferred to a Tehran hospital for further treatment.
Ganji is reportedly suffering from a chronic flu.
His relatives told ISNA that he is still not allowed to speak to his family.
Ganji was sentenced in 2000 to five years in jail by a revolutionary court in Tehran on charges of undermining national security and carrying out propaganda against the Islamic system.
Iraqi TV Director Resigns
TEHRAN, Aug. 6--
Managing director of Iraq's national TV net- work stepped down for what he said was the humiliating failure of US propaganda against Iran and the former regime of Saddam Hussein.
Ahmad Al-Rikaby, a former London-basecorrespondent for Radio Free Iraq, was quoted by the Saudi daily Ar-Riyadh as saying that the US has lost its psychological war against Iran and Saddam.
He also said that Washington has failed to bring Iraqi media under control, because the "Iranian Al-Alam satellite TV as well as Qatar-based Al-Jazeera are enormously popular in the war-battered country."
The former political dissident went on to say that the US must try to meet the Iraqi people's demands.
Al-Rikaby's family was forced into exile when the Ba'ath party came to power in 1968.
"It has been very difficult not to have a homeland, or rather to have a homeland you cannot visit without risking your life," he said.
His family sought refuge in seven different countries. He complained about not knowing the comfort of his close rela tives.
"When I speak now with other Iraqis in exile, we talk mainly about the future. We don't dwell on torture inside Iraq because it is something so obvious. We are concerned about the future--how to change the current situation, how to rebuild our country. We talk about our dreams of a democratic Iraq, whereyou can travel, write and express your opinion about the government or any other subject. As a journalist, I want to meet the next Iraqi president and ask him tough questions without fearing for my life," he said.
"IRAN" faces new complaints
TEHRAN, Aug. 6--
Managing director of the Persian daily Iran showed up at Branch III of the Government Employees and Press Judicial Complex, ISNA reported on Wednesday.
Abdorrasoul Vesal was summoned to respond to a compli- ant filed against "Iran" by the prosecutor general for printing a headline about Information Ministry being dissatisfied with the follow-up on the case of Zahra Kazemi in its July 4 issue.
After leaving the complex, Vesal said, "After several hours of interrogations, I was informed that in addition to this complaint, other complaints have also been filed against "Iran" for printing the viewpoints of Mashallah Shamsolvaezin (an outspoken veteran journalist), Mohsen Armin (a prominent MP),Mohammad Reza Khatami (Majlis first vice speaker) and Ali Akbar Mohtashamipour (head of the Majlis reformist faction).
"I have been given five days to defend myself against these complaints.
Of course, the Information Ministry has not yet directly reacted and the first complaint was only filed by the prosecutor general."
Kazemi, an Iranian-Canadian photojournalist, died of brain hemorrhage caused by a severe blow to her head while in police custody.
The popular daily has been accused of spreading lies, libel, and propigating against the Islamic system.
SPIN CYCLE COMPLETE. PEASE RINCE TWICE TO REMOVE REMAINING PROPAGANDA.
IMHO I would state that as "Bush Administration appears to be paralysed over Iran situation".