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Iranian Alert -- August 23, 2003 -- LIVE THREAD PING LIST
The Iranian Student Movement Up To The Minute Reports ^ | 8.23.2003 | DoctorZin

Posted on 08/23/2003 12:03:24 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.


TOPICS: Extended News; Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: iran; iranianalert; protests; studentmovement; studentprotest
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To: Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; McGavin999; Hinoki Cypress; ...
Iranian Asylum Seekers to be Forceably Repatriated

August 23, 2003
Brendan Nicholson
The Age

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

DoctorZin Note: What are the Austrailians doing?
21 posted on 08/23/2003 10:22:40 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
The Cult of Journalist as Hero
Amir Taheri

The Middle East's Leading English Language Daily
Friday, 22, August, 2003 (24, Jumada ath-Thani, 1424)

The Watergate episode had a lasting impact on journalism throughout the world. After it many newcomers to journalism saw themselves as white knights of the truth, storming the palaces of the mighty to lay them low. The Watergate reporters had done little on their own to find the story. The story had been spoon-fed to them by “Deep Throat” who wanted to destroy Nixon. “Deep Throat” had offered his story to four other reporters who had refused to take it. Thus the Washington Post reporters ended up, in effect, working for “Deep Throat”.

The cult of journalist as hero is dangerous because it injects the poison of personal ambition into the business of reporting. The reporter who is seeking stardom is soon programmed not to look for facts but for the story that could bring him fame and glory. All this has leads to dependence by journalists on informants, usually referred to as “highly informed sources” or “sources speaking on condition of anonymity.” The latest example of that can be seen in the current dispute between the BBC and the office of British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

Last spring, a BBC reporter, Andrew Gilligan, broadcast an item claiming that “intelligence sources” had told him that Blair’s chief press officer Alistair Campbell had exaggerated — “sexed up” — a report on Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction in order to persuade the British public to support military action against Saddam Hussein. In the months that followed, it became clear that Gilligan had not had “sources” but a single source, Dr. David Kelly, a weapons’ expert in the Ministry of Defense.

Gilligan could easily have telephoned Campbell and asked him to comment about the Kelly claim before broadcasting the story. He did not. He could have also asked a dozen other sources to comment on Kelly’s claim. He did not. It is, of course, perfectly legitimate for any journalist to hit at Campbell and Blair. But this should be done in editorials and opinion columns, not through a story presented as news.

My first editor Kazem Zarnegar taught me that no news item was acceptable unless checked with at least three sources. “If someone says something, you must find someone else who is likely to refute that,” he used to say. “Once you have those two, find a third source who is on neither side.” Journalism that depends on a single source becomes a branch of public relations. Zarnegar’s advice was to be always suspicious of anyone who leaked a story to you. He used to say: “Ask yourself: why is this guy doing it? Does he want to advance my career as a reporter or is he grilling his own kebab?” When the Watergate scandal broke out we thought that we had an argument against Zarnegar. “Would you have dismissed the Watergate story because it came from one unnamed source?” we asked him. “Absolutely,” he said.

What would have happened if Zarnegar had been The Washington Post editor in place of my late friend Ben Bradlee? “Deep Throat” would not have been able to use the newspaper as a weapon against Nixon. He would have been forced to go to the police or the FBI, or at least inform members of the Congress. All that would have forced the police and the FBI to investigate, and, in time, Nixon’s role would have been revealed. Eventually,

The idea is that the media should not try to do what other institutions of the state must do. If those institutions are weak or, for whatever reason, do not do their job properly, the media must report and analyze their shortcomings. But it should not pose as a substitute. Because of the Watergate effect, some journalists go under cover in search of stories, ranging from smuggling a knife through airport security to exposing a sexual relationship between a politician and a call girl.

Because so many journalists try to do other people’s jobs, it is no surprise that other people are trying to do the job of the journalist. Politicians write op-ed pieces at an alarming rate. And people from all walks of life set up Internet websites to secure a journalistic niche.

Abu Al-Nasr Al-Farabi said over a thousand years ago that civilization starts when men learn to mark out spaces allocated to each of the activities needed for the survival and progress of human societies. The blurring of those demarcation lines is always a step back toward barbarity.

22 posted on 08/23/2003 10:31:09 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; McGavin999; Hinoki Cypress; ...
Another article by Amir Taheri. Again, not about Iran but valuable reading. -- DoctorZin

The Cult of Journalist as Hero
Amir Taheri

The Middle East's Leading English Language Daily
Friday, 22, August, 2003 (24, Jumada ath-Thani, 1424)

"If you want on or off this Iran ping list, Freepmail me”
23 posted on 08/23/2003 10:33:34 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
"As long as there is vigilance, none of the plots hatched by the enemies of the establishment...will prove effective,"
"...these efforts, which are made under hard and complicated conditions and many people and officials are unaware of them, are among the acts which are blessed by God".

Enemy plots again.
Sounds to me like secretly arresting people (or worse), in a country that's against you is getting harder to do. And God is not blessing anything Khamenei dictates.

24 posted on 08/23/2003 10:45:45 AM PDT by nuconvert
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To: DoctorZIn
25 posted on 08/23/2003 11:35:03 AM PDT by F14 Pilot (What Goes Around, Comes Around...!)
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To: DoctorZIn
26 posted on 08/23/2003 5:35:39 PM PDT by windchime
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran Extradites Qaeda Members to Saudi Arabia

August 23, 2003

LONDON -- Iran has extradited a number of Saudi members of al Qaeda to Saudi Arabia, the official Iranian news agency IRNA, monitored in London by the BBC, reported on Saturday.

IRNA quoted Tehran's ambassador to Riyadh as saying the al Qaeda members had been arrested in Iran after the U.S.-led war on Afghanistan, but did not name them, or say how many had been extradited or when they had been handed over to Saudi Arabia.

The envoy, speaking to IRNA on the sidelines of a conference in Tehran, said Iran and Saudi Arabia, leading oil producers and both Muslim nations, had signed a security pact and "have shown a firm resolve to improve ties in all areas," the BBC said.

Last Sunday IRNA quoted Hassan Rohani, secretary-general of the Supreme National Security Council, as saying that Iran had foiled a number of attacks al Qaeda had been planning to carry out on its soil.

"Their (al Qaeda's) plans for a wide range of terrorist acts inside Iran were neutralized by our intelligence organizations," IRNA quoted Rohani as saying, though he gave no details.

Although a staunch political enemy of Washington, Iran condemned the September 11 attacks on the United States which were blamed on al Qaeda and was fiercely opposed to the rule of al Qaeda's former sponsors, the Taliban, in neighboring Afghanistan.

Tehran has said previously that it has arrested a number of al Qaeda members, including some senior figures in Osama bin Laden's organization. But it has declined to name them and has refused to hand them over to U.S. officials for questioning.

The Islamic Republic has also acknowledged that its extensive eastern border with Afghanistan is hard to police and some fleeing al Qaeda members may have been able to slip into the country undetected.

Intelligence sources and media reports suggest Iran may be holding Saad bin Laden, a son of the al Qaeda leader, al Qaeda's security chief Egyptian Saif al Adel and its Kuwaiti-born spokesman Sulaiman Abu Ghaith, among others.

Washington has in the past accused Iran of sheltering al Qaeda and said members of bin Laden's network in Iran may have planned the May 12 bombings in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, which killed 35 people.

Fifteen of the 19 men who carried out the September 11 suicide hijackings in the United States were Saudi citizens, and Riyadh, under pressure from Washington, has launched a crackdown that has involved bloody clashes between security forces and militants.

Iran says that in the past year it has arrested and deported around 500 al Qaeda suspects who fled across its borders from Afghanistan and Pakistan.
27 posted on 08/23/2003 7:25:46 PM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; McGavin999; Hinoki Cypress; ...
Iran Extradites Qaeda Members to Saudi Arabia

August 23, 2003

"If you want on or off this Iran ping list, Freepmail me”
28 posted on 08/23/2003 7:26:48 PM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran Rejects An Equal Production Quota With Iraq

August 23, 2003
Dow Jones Newswires
Nasdaq Headlines

TEHRAN -- Iran's governor for the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, Hussein Kazempour-Ardebili, said Iran will never accept an OPEC production quota on par with neighboring Iraq based on that country's alleged 112 billion barrels of oil reserves, Iran's Labor News Agency (ILNA) reported Saturday.

"For instance, if Iraq should claim that because of its 112 billion barrels of oil reserves, it must have a production equal to that of Iran, it will certainly not be accepted by us," he said.

Kazempour said estimates of Iran's oil reserves stood at 99 billion barrels in 2001, but since then it has been revised to 130.7 billion barrels based on the outcome of exploratory activities and hikes in the oil recovery index.

He said Iran's claim of cumulative reserves of 130.7 billion barrels has been "confirmed" by all international oil companies involved in oil exploration and development activities in Iran.

He also explained that quotas for the OPEC member states have nothing to do with estimates of their reserves.

"Saudi Arabia is producing 8 million barrels of oil a day in view of its 265 million barrels of reserves, though OPEC quotas have nothing to do with the members' reserves."

Kazempour said production levels by various OPEC member countries are based on mutual agreement.

In view of the anticipated drop in the global demand for crude oil, the international oil market will experience price fluctuations next year if Iraq should decide to raise its oil production to 2.5 million barrels a day by then, Kazempour said.

He said if Iraq asks OPEC for a quota of 2.5 million barrels a day, production by other members will most likely rise by some 1.2 million b/d as well to establish an equilibrium. "Therefore, we will be witnessing pressure on prices," Kazempour added.

He said that based on forecasts by industry observers, Iraq's production will amount to 1.7 million b/d by the end of this year and around 2.5 million b/d next year. "The degree of pressure on prices will depend on the level of production then."

OPEC will have to provide for production of 1.7 million b/d for Iraq to let it join the organization after a hiatus of a number of years from the organization's quota system, the Iranian governor said.

Kazempour said Iran's production capacity now stands at 4.2 million b/d with an OPEC assigned production of 3.3 million b/d.

-Hashem Kalantari, Dow Jones Newswires; +9821 896 6230
29 posted on 08/23/2003 7:28:28 PM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
Mystery Surrounds Iran's al-Qaeda Captives

August 23, 2003
The Financial Times
Roula Khalaf

Iranian officials describe them as "big fish". Western governments think they are of "high intelligence value". But the case of the senior al-Qaeda members detained in Iran - even how many they number - has been shrouded in mystery.

The US has been pressing for access to the captured operatives. But Tehran has been in no rush to deliver or to reveal details about the detainees.

The controversy erupted in May after suicide bombings of westerners' residential compounds in Riyadh, the Saudi capital. A telephone conversation between Iran and Saudi Arabia, intercepted by western intelligence, suggested that Seif al-Adel, said to be al-Qaeda's chief military planner, was in Iran.

Tehran eventually responded to renewed US pressure by saying that it had arrested 500 suspected al-Qaeda members by March and sent most of them back to their respective countries, as it had done in the past.

Since then, however, western speculation has intensified over the continued detention of top figures from the terrorist organisation. Names that have been mentioned in the region include: one of Osama bin Laden's sons; Egyptian-born Ayman Zawahiri, the second in command; Suleiman Abu Gaith, the Kuwait-born al-Qaeda spokesman; and Abu Musab Zarqawi, a key Jordanian member.

Iranian sources say Saad bin Laden, who is in his early 20s, has been sent to Pakistan and that Mr Zawahiri is too big a fish to keep in Iran. But they hint that those Iran is holding could know the whereabouts of Osama bin Laden himself.

Officials in Tehran say that while US access to the detainees has been ruled out, discussions are under way to send them to their countries of origin. But they also acknowledge resistance from powerful forces in the regime. "Internal decision-making is very difficult on this issue," says one.

Western diplomats in Tehran also say technical hurdles could explain Iranian delays in a few cases. Mr Abu Gaith, for example, has been stripped of his Kuwaiti nationality. But diplomats and analysts think the al-Qaeda file in Iran is closely guarded by hardliners who consider the captured operatives an important bargaining chip - particularly at a time when Iran faces enormous US pressure on several fronts, including its nuclear programme.

Following the ousting of the Taliban regime in Afghanistan, the US accused Iran of harbouring al-Qaeda terrorists. But Tehran has repeatedly complained that its subsequent co-operation in the war on terror had not been appreciated.

The reformist government of President Mohamed Khatami has signalled that it wants to put the al-Qaeda issue behind it. Last week Mr Khatami pledged that Saudi detainees would be sent back to Riyadh.

It remains unclear, however, whether any of the top captured al-Qaeda members are Saudi. Nor is it clear whether Mr Khatami will overcome resistance from the powerful hardliners. "There are people who say that because [the detainees] are Islamist we should at least not hurt them," says an official.

Fundamentalist Shia Iran and the Sunni radicals of the Taliban who harboured al-Qaeda had long been bitter enemies. Tehran celebrated the ousting of the militias from Afghanistan.

But some of the Islamist groups that joined al-Qaeda in the 1990s had past relations with Iran, which had been a magnet and source of support for Islamist opposition in the Middle East.

A key Iranian concern, say diplomats, is that US access to detainees if ever delivered to Arab countries may reveal how the al-Qaeda operatives entered Iran and who might have facilitated their arrival.

"A most sensitive issue for Iran is what happens when it hands them over," says a western diplomat.

Some analysts say the controversy has been further complicated by reports of recent al-Qaeda threats against Iran. "In the past we tried to hand people over to respective countries and it is still our policy, but al-Qaeda threats should be taken into account," says one insider.

"Iran will keep them as a lever. It is waiting to see positive steps from the US."

This week Tehran welcomed a US decision to close the Washington offices of the political wing of Mujahedeen Khalq, the Iranian opposition group listed by Washington as a terrorist organisation.

Iran is said to want more action on the Iranian dissidents in neighbouring Iraq and is hoping for a more general easing of US pressure on the regime.

But diplomats warn that Iran is playing a dangerous game. The longer it takes Tehran to deliver the suspects anywhere outside Iran, the more it will antagonise the Bush administration, now battling a rising tide of violence in Iraq. The value of the intelligence the operatives might reveal, meanwhile, diminishes with time.

Most perilous for Iran is that it could pay a heavy price if any of the detainees are suspected of having helped plan new terrorist attacks. "There seems to be this idea of having an ace to use vis-à-vis the US. But it's a bizarre logic. It leads to more US pressure," says a diplomat.
30 posted on 08/23/2003 7:31:32 PM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; McGavin999; Hinoki Cypress; ...
Mystery Surrounds Iran's al-Qaeda Captives

August 23, 2003
The Financial Times
Roula Khalaf

"If you want on or off this Iran ping list, Freepmail me”
31 posted on 08/23/2003 7:32:16 PM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
Iran Cuts Culture, Economic Ties with Argentina

Reuters - World News
Aug 23, 2003

TEHRAN - Iran is cutting its cultural and economic ties with Argentina because of the arrest in Britain of a former Iranian ambassador to Argentina in connection with a 1994 bombing in Buenos Aires, state television said on Saturday.

Ex-envoy Hadi Soleimanpour, 47, was arrested in Britain on Thursday after Argentina requested his extradition in connection with the AMIA Jewish Community Center blast that killed 85 people in Buenos Aires.

"Iran's foreign ministry official in charge of the Americas desk announced Iran's strong objection to the Argentinian judiciary's measure and informed him (the Argentinian charge d'affaires) of Iran's decision on halting cultural and economic cooperation with Argentina," state television quoted Foreign Ministry official Mehdi Mohtashami as saying.

Officials at the Argentinian mission in Tehran were not immediately available for comment. One Western diplomat said Argentina had a charge d'affaires in Tehran. Iranian Foreign Ministry officials were also not available.

Iran is a major wheat importer and Argentina has traditionally been among the country's suppliers. It was not immediately clear whether that trade would be affected by Iran's latest initiative. Tehran denies any involvement in the bombing and previously withdrew its ambassador from Argentina to protest against the claim of Iranian involvement, though it retains a mission in Buenos Aires.

One diplomat in Tehran said the Iranian move suggested the government wanted to express anger at the ex-diplomat's arrest, but was stopping short of a major new diplomatic initiative against Argentina.

Britain's charge d'affaires in Tehran, Matthew Gould, told Reuters he had told Iranian Foreign Ministry officials Soleimanpour's arrest was not politically motivated, and the court's decision was independent of the British government.

"The British government cannot interfere at this stage of the extradition process," he said, adding that he had been summoned to the Iranian Foreign Ministry and asked for the immediate release of the ex-diplomat. Soleimanpour entered Britain on a student visa in February last year to study at Durham University.
32 posted on 08/23/2003 7:33:29 PM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
Iranians 'secretly deported'

News - News Section
Aug 23, 2003

Three Iranian men were removed from a South Australian detention centre this morning to be forcibly deported from the country, the National Anti-Deportation Alliance (NADA) said today.

NADA spokeswoman Liz Thompson said the three men, all aged about 40, were taken from the Baxter Detention Centre, which is closed to visitors today, between 7.45 and 8am (CST).

"We have received information that three men have been taken from the compound and they are on the road at the moment, either to Adelaide or to the Woomera airstrip," she said from Port Augusta.

"Their things have been taken, so they're definitely leaving, they're not just paying a visit somewhere, their gear was collected this morning and they were removed from the compound."

Ms Thompson said it was likely more failed Iranian asylum seekers would also be removed today.
33 posted on 08/23/2003 7:34:39 PM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
Why the mullahs need a war with America

Aug. 22, 2003
Jerusalem Post

Conventional European wisdom holds that Washington's nonconservatives are itching for war against Iran, but little attention is paid to Teheran's hawks, who wish to provoke conflict as an excuse for suppressing democracy at home.

Although some mullahs, including President Muhammad Khatami, argue that a clash with the US should be avoided, others, notably Supreme Guide Ali Khamenei, are actively preparing for it. Last April Khamenei convened a meeting of senior military commanders, the largest in almost 10 years, ostensibly to review the consequences of the war in Iraq.

According to Teheran sources, Khamenei ordered commanders to prepare "a strategic plan" to face military action by the US. Ahmad Vahidi, a two-star general and adviser to the supreme guide was put in charge of preparing the plan.

Last week, what is described as the first draft of the plan was presented to Khamenei. Elements of it have been revealed in public statements by Maj.-Gen. Rahim Safavi, commander-in-chief of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, and Vice-Admiral Ali Shamkhani, the defense minister.

"We expect aggression [from the US]" Safavi told a rally of volunteers about to join the guard in Sabalan, western Iran, on August 11. "Our strategy is to prepare for an unequal battle." Safavi claimed that the "unequal battle" nabard namotoqaren worked both ways. As far as modern weapons and military technology were concerned, that inequality favored the US. But when it came to manpower and "readiness to sustain large numbers of casualties," Iran had the advantage.

The Iranian commander also revealed that "the strategic plan" was based on the assumption that the US and its allies would attack from four directions: Iraq in the west, Azerbaijan in the north, Afghanistan in the east and the Persian Gulf in the south.

At the same time the US may try to air-drop troops close to big cities such as Shiraz and Isfahan in the hope that the local population will rise against the mullahs. Safavi said that Iran's traditional war plans had been based on the assumption of attacks by "enemy forces" from the border areas, especially in the west and north. "Now we must be prepared for attacks coming from all directions," he said. "We must treat our entire nation as frontier land."

The general spelled out what he called "the doctrine of defense in depth" difaa omghi. This consists of creating thousands of small units capable of engaging the American "invaders" in countless localities, thus depriving the US of a chance to deliver a knockout blow.

According to Safavi, the new strategy provides for a dispersion of arms and materiel as a means of limiting losses likely to be caused by heavy American bombing raids. Mountain hideouts have been designated as secret arms depots.

ARE IRAN'S armed forces large enough to cover a territory three times bigger than Iraq? The Revolutionary Guard consists of two corps and four independent units, totalling 300,000 men. The regular army, used mostly as a technical backup, has 180,000 men and the lightly armed gendarmerie 120,000.

There are also a number of paramilitary organizations, of which the largest, Baseej Mustazafin Mobilization of the Dispossessed has 200,000 fighters, at least on paper. Safavi claims that the Baseej has a reserve force of over eight million. Next fiscal year, the Iranian budget will allocate an additional $1.2 billion to retraining and arming a million Baseej reservists.

Some experts, however, believe that most of the forces Safavi counts on exist only on paper. "A good part of those numbers represent the civilian personnel and the bureaucracy that runs numerous enterprises on behalf of the Revolutionary Guard," says Hamid Zomorrodi, a former army captain. "In any case Iran has few units that are trained and equipped for guerrilla warfare of the kind Safavi envisages."

Defense Minister Shamkhani, for his part, has shed more light on the current thinking in military circles. In recent interviews and speeches, he has expressed confidence that if attacked by the US, Iran would be able to resist beyond "the American capacity for endurance." That capacity is believed to be limited to a maximum of 20 weeks of fighting and 5,000 American killed.

Shamkhani believes that had the Iraqis continued to fight the US to the limits of that capacity American public opinion would have forced the Bush administration to seek a cease-fire with Saddam Hussein.

"The key question is never to admit defeat," Shamkhani said in a recent speech. "No war is won until one side admits to being the loser."

The strategy is, in part, based on Iran's experience during the 1980-88 war against Iraq. At that time Iran used its geographical and demographic superiority to wear out the outnumbered Iraqis, who also lacked territorial depth.

Iran suffered almost two million casualties, including 750,000 deaths, but managed to halt the initial Iraqi advance and then take the war into Iraqi territory.

The new strategy reflects the influence of North Korean military doctrines on Iranian commanders. Safavi, Shamkhani and almost all other senior Iranian military leaders have received part of their training in North Korea, which has been Iran's principal military ally since the mid-1980s.

FORMER FOREIGN minister Ali-Akbar Velayati, a close adviser to Khamenei, says that Iran should welcome a direct clash with the US because it would create "an earthquake" in the Middle East and, possibly, throughout the Muslim world.

In the 1980-88 war Iran also tried to spread the war to the whole region. It launched air raids on Saudi Arabia and briefly stopped the flow of Kuwaiti oil by firing at Kuwaiti tankers. This time Iranian commanders believe they have a better chance of applying the strategy of kondeh-suz bonfire and widening the war to the whole of the Middle East.

In a recent paper, partly leaked in Teheran, Velayati said that, if attacked, Iran would open "a second, a third, a fourth and a fifth front."

The Iranian-controlled branch of the Hizbullah in Lebanon would immediately open a new front against Israel, using thousands of medium-range Fajr IV missiles it has received from Teheran. Various Palestinian militant groups now heavily dependent on Iranian finance, including Hamas and Islamic Jihad, would move onto the offensive against Israel.

The Islamic Republic also has allies in Afghanistan and Iraq that could raise a few fires against the US and its allies there. The Arab oilfields of the Persian Gulf, and similar installations in the Caspian Sea, could be targeted by Iran's massive arsenal of missiles, one of the largest in Asia.

THE WHOLE strategy is based on the assumption that once Iran has developed its own nuclear deterrent it would be immune to any US attack. This is why Iran's quest for nuclear weapons has been put in high gear, emerging as one of the few issues on which all factions are in agreement.

"The next 18 months to two years will be the most dangerous in the history of our revolution," former president Hashemi Rafsanjani said in a recent sermon in Teheran. "Once we have passed through that danger zone we shall be in a position that will discourage attacks [by the US]."

Some commentators take those remarks to mean Iran is confident of having a nuclear deterrent before 2005.

Khamenei, Vahidi, Safavi, Shamkhani, and Velayati are only a few of the "bitter-enders" who think they can take on the US and defeat it.

In 1980 the Khomeinist regime was saved from a popular revolt because of Saddam Hussein's invasion of Iran. Khomeini's successors hope story will repeat itself with a US attack producing a patriotic reflex that would stifle democratic aspirations.

Anyone familiar with Iran's realities, however, knows that what was true in 1980 will not necessarily be true today. A military conflict with the US could, in fact, accelerate the downfall of what is now an unpopular, deeply divided and corrupt regime.

Paradoxically, a diplomatic settlement with the US may prolong the life of the regime. Libya's Colonel Mu'ammar Gaddafi seems to have understood what the Khomeinists refuse to acknowledge.

The writer, an Iranian author and journalist, is editor of the Paris-based Politique Internationale.
34 posted on 08/23/2003 7:50:39 PM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; McGavin999; Hinoki Cypress; ...
Very interesting article... DoctorZin

Why the mullahs need a war with America

Aug. 22, 2003
Jerusalem Post

"If you want on or off this Iran ping list, Freepmail me”
35 posted on 08/23/2003 7:52:04 PM PDT by DoctorZIn
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Comment #36 Removed by Moderator

To: Fledermaus
And let us thank Bush and his administration for doing absolutely nothing to help.
When a tin horn dictator in Cuba, while being serviced by Tom Hanks and Steven Speilberg, can jam our signals to Iran and Bush does nothing but send back those that escape, you can be assured it's not going to work out in Iran.

I am baffled by these return policies (which even on just a political assessment, is costing him the support of the Floridian Cubans). And by the fact that Bush has not only failed to purge our State Department, but leaves Colin Powell in charge. What is going on?

37 posted on 08/23/2003 8:20:46 PM PDT by Eala (When politicians speak of children, count the spoons. - National Review Editors)
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To: DoctorZIn
Organized by the CIA and the British SIS to secure Iran's oil resources from a possible Soviet takeover...

"If there had not been a military coup, there would not have been 25 years of the Shah's brutal regime...

Today, Mr. Mossadegh remains a hero to many Iranians who believe he fought against colonial exploitation and dictatorial rule during his 26 months in office. Perhaps because he represents a future denied and what might have been, his memory has approached myth.

I confess ignorance -- but not lack of interest. These three items stood out in my mind from this article, and I'd like to hear from those more in the know about Iran than I:

-Possible Soviet takeover of Iran's oil. I grew up earlier on in the Cold War and can imagine that if this were considered a real threat that such a coup would be engineered. I remember well the fear of the Soviet threat. Might Mossadegh have turned to Russia?

-25 years of the Shah's brutal regime. Um. From the limited sources I have, the 25 years of the Shah's regime were not all brutal. I have a book written by an Iranian that does not speak of the regime being oppressive until its last few years, boxed in by those intent on its destruction. Other sources, including ex-pat Iranian friends (who can be credibly labeled as having a bias) somewhat confirm that.

-Mr. Mossadegh remains a hero to many Iranians. This is something I know nothing about.

Can anyone here with knowledge of Iran respond to these, please?

38 posted on 08/23/2003 8:35:05 PM PDT by Eala (When politicians speak of children, count the spoons. - National Review Editors)
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To: All
A look at the Argentina Blast through BBC Website.
39 posted on 08/23/2003 9:50:50 PM PDT by F14 Pilot
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To: DoctorZIn
The Australian government maintains that it is safe to send them back to Iran, based on undertakings given by the Iranian government.
40 posted on 08/23/2003 9:54:36 PM PDT by BlackVeil
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