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Iranian Alert -- October 11, 2003 -- IRAN LIVE THREAD PING LIST
The Iranian Student Movement Up To The Minute Reports ^ | 10.11.2003 | DoctorZin

Posted on 10/11/2003 12:38:05 AM PDT by DoctorZIn

The US media almost entirely ignores news regarding the Islamic Republic of Iran. As Tony Snow of the Fox News Network has put it, “this is probably the most under-reported news story of the year.”

But most American’s are unaware that the Islamic Republic of Iran is NOT supported by the masses of Iranians today. Modern Iranians are among the most pro-American in the Middle East.

There is a popular revolt against the Iranian regime brewing in Iran today. Starting June 10th of this year, Iranians have begun taking to the streets to express their desire for a regime change. Most want to replace the regime with a secular democracy. Many even want the US to over throw their government.

The regime is working hard to keep the news about the protest movement in Iran from being reported. Unfortunately, the regime has successfully prohibited western news reporters from covering the demonstrations.

The voices of discontent within Iran are sometime murdered, more often imprisoned. Still the people continue to take to the streets to demonstrate against the regime.

In support of this revolt, Iranians in America have been broadcasting news stories by satellite into Iran. This 21st century news link has greatly encouraged these protests. The regime has been attempting to jam the signals, and locate the satellite dishes. Still the people violate the law and listen to these broadcasts.

Iranians also use the Internet and the regime attempts to block their access to news against the regime. In spite of this, many Iranians inside of Iran read these posts daily to keep informed of the events in their own country.

This daily thread contains nearly all of the English news reports on Iran. It is thorough.

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. The news stories and commentary will from time to time include material from the regime itself. But if you read the post you will discover for yourself, the real story of what is occurring in Iran and its effects on the war on terror.

I am not of Iranian heritage. I am an American committed to supporting the efforts of those in Iran seeking to replace their government with a secular democracy. I am in contact with leaders of the Iranian community here in the United States and in Iran itself.

If you read the daily posts you will gain a better understanding of the US war on terrorism, the Middle East and why we need to support a change of regime in Iran. Feel free to ask your questions and post news stories you discover in the weeks to come.

If all goes well Iran will be free soon and I am convinced become a major ally in the war on terrorism. The regime will fall. Iran will be free. It is just a matter of time.


PS I have a daily ping list and a breaking news ping list. If you would like to receive alerts to these stories please let me know which list you would like to join.

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

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

1 posted on 10/11/2003 12:38:06 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: All

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2 posted on 10/11/2003 12:39:47 AM PDT by Support Free Republic (Your support keeps Free Republic going strong!)
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To: Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; McGavin999; Hinoki Cypress; ...
Join Us At Today's Iranian Alert Thread

Live Thread Ping List | DoctorZin

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

3 posted on 10/11/2003 12:47:50 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn

By Safa Haeri

Mrs Shirin Ebadi, the outspoken Iranian human rights activist and one of Iran’s most respected lawyer won Friday the 2003 Nobel Peace Prize for her work “fighting for democracy and the rights of women and children”, a spokesman for the Nobel Peace Price announced.

“This prize doesn't belong to me only, it belongs to all people who work for human rights and democracy in Iran", an obviously delighted and still surprised Ebadi told newsmen in Paris, where she was visiting.

The news filled Iranians all over the world with pride except for the ruling ayatollahs, who saw the world most prestigious award given to an Iranian woman a deliberate “act by Europe to belittle Islam” and forbade the public media they control to inform the Iranians at home from the news.

“People started congratulating each other in the streets. Car drivers, including taxis, opened lights, horning their claxons, some distributed pastries while weeping of joy”, one eyewitness told Iran Press Service on the phone from Tehran.

The 56 years-old Ebadi, who is married and has three children, is the first Iranian and also Muslim woman that win the award that some had hoped would go to the ageing Pope Jean Paul II or former Czech president Vaclav Havel.

One of the very first women under the former Iranian Monarchy to become judge, Mrs. Ebadi was denied her job after the victory of the Islamic Revolution of 1979 and was jailed on occasions on charges of slandering government officials and defending prominent Iranian intellectuals and political dissidents and deprived of professional activities for some time.

The award created surprise all over the world, but particularly in Iran, where people learned of the news from foreign-based radio and television stations or by relatives who called them on the phone or send them e-mails.

The Nobel committee said Ebadi is well-known and admired by Iranians for her defence in court of victims of attacks by hard-liners on freedom of speech and political freedom.

"As a lawyer, judge, lecturer, writer and activist, she has spoken out clearly and strongly in her country, Iran, far beyond its borders," the awards committee said in its citation.

It said she has stood up as a "sound professional, a courageous person, and has never heeded the threat to her own safety."

“This prize belongs to all Iranians and all those who fight for the cause of human rights”, she said, adding that it also shows that Islam was not against human rights and democracy and for this reason, even the clerics must feel proud.

"Therefore, the religious ones should also welcome this award," she said.

“The prize means you can be a Muslim and at the same time have human rights”, Mrs. Ebadi said, with her voice chocked by emotion.

But as the official news agency IRNA reported it in few lines that the evening dailies, controlled by the conservatives refused to print and the radio and television, which are controlled directly by Ayatollah Ali Khameneh’i, the lamed leader of the Islamic Republic, reporting hours latter, only one official voice, that of Hojjatoleslanm Mohammad Ali Abtahi, the Vice-president for Legal and Parliamentary Affairs saved the day for the authorities in congratulating the laureate.

"I am very satisfied that an Iranian and above all a woman has won the Nobel Peace Prize”, he told AFP. "It is a sign of the very active presence of Iranian women on the social and political scene.

“The fact that a lawyer has won this prize gives us hope that the judicial system will change its methods," he added, referring to the conservative-controlled judiciary in Iran that Ebadi has targetted in her drive for change.

Mrs. Elaheh Koulaie, a female reformist MP and also a human rights campaigner like Mrs Ebadi, said the prize shows the world community that the democracy process in Iran is going forward.

The deputy head of Iran's main press rights body, the Iranian Centre for the Protection of Journalists, also said the prize was a powerful message to Iran's rival political camps, the French news agency AFP reported from Tehran.

Isa Saharkhiz said he hoped they (the ruling conservative minority) “will learn a lesson of how much the values of people who struggle in favour of democracy and freedom of expression are appreciated worldwide”.

Hojjatoleslam Mohsen Rohami, a lawyer and university professor, who was briefly imprisoned along with Mrs. Ebadi in 2000, said he was "very happy that an Iranian human rights activist has won the attention of the international community."

And in a statement given to AFP by his son, Iran's top dissident cleric Grand Ayatollah Hoseynali Montazeri said he was "happy that an Iranian personality has been awarded such a merit”.

A lawyer for the Foroohar family, Mrs Ebadi criticised the lack of freedom of speech and democracy in Iran and urged the government to immediately release prisoners jailed for expressing their opinions.

Dariush Foroohar, a popular politician and his wife Parvaneh had been savagely killed in their residence in Tehran on late November 1998 by high-ranking agents of the Intelligence Ministry who had also assassinated three other prominent intellectuals and human rights campaigners in Mohammad Mokhtari, Mohammad Ja’far Pooyandeh and Majid Sharif.

She also said she hoped the award would send a message to those in the Iranian leadership who press for nuclear weapons, saying "I hope it will have an effect in Iran. As a person who has actively been involved in human rights, I am against war and conflict, and countries and nations do not need war”, she said during a brief press conference before flying back to Tehran.

"The fight for human rights is conducted in Iran by the Iranian people and we are against any foreign intervention in Iran”, she further said.

"I am extremely happy. This is a great day for reformers in Iran. It's great for her and great for the country," her husband, Javad Tavassolian, said from Tehran, where she was expected to return from Paris next week.

But as the clerical-led authorities ignored the news, messages of congratulations came from most world leaders, including President Jacques Chirac of France and Austrian Foreign Minister Benita Ferrero-Waldner who called Ebadi "a courageous woman who has earned the support of all women in the Western world”.

"It's a great victory for Iran, for human rights militants in Iran, for Iranian democrats in Iran”, said Dr Karim Lahidji, president in exile of the Iranian League for Human Rights and vice president of the Paris-based International Federation of Human Rights Leagues, who is a close friend of the Nobel Peace prize winner.

Former US president Jimmy Carter, last year's Nobel peace prize winner, called Ebadi "an inspiration to people in Iran and around the world."

Human rights activists around the world also praised the decision.

"By honouring Shirin, the Norwegian Nobel Committee has recognized the critical importance of human rights and the individuals who defend them around the world”, Amnesty International said.

In Beirut, human rights activist Samira Trad said the Nobel committee "has made a good judgment. It is good for a woman and good for our area."

Jordanian human rights activist Rana Husseini said the award "will promote women's causes worldwide, including Arab and Muslim women's issues."

Committee chairman Ole Danbolt Mjoes said it was an easy decision.

“This is a question of fundamental rights about women, about fundamental rights of children and mothers," he said. "I hope the award of the peace to Ebadi can help strengthen and lend support to the cause of human rights in Iran".

The committee also lauded Ebadi for arguing for a new interpretation of Islamic law that is in harmony with vital human rights such as democracy and equality before the law.

Ebadi is the third Muslim to win the prize. Yasser Arafat won the prize in 1994, sharing it with Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres and slain Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin. In 1978, Egyptian president Anwar Sadat shared the prize with Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin for jointly negotiating peace between the two countries.

But Iranian conservatives were not the only ones to be unhappy about the decision, as Polish former president and Solidarity founder Lech Walesa who got the 1983 Peace Prize said the prize should go to the Pope.

“I bear nothing against this lady, but if anyone among the
living deserves it, then it is the Holy Father”, Walesa told TVN24.
The five-member awards committee, which is appointed by but does not answer to Norway's parliament, makes its choices in strict secrecy. It also keeps the names of candidates, a record 165 this year, secret for 50 years, although those who make nominations often reveal them.

The announcements of this year's Nobels started last week with the literature prize going to J.M. Coetzee of South Africa.

The prizes are presented Dec. 10, the anniversary of Nobel's death in 1896 in the Swedish capital, Stockholm. The Peace Prize is presented in Oslo.

This year's prize is worth $1.3 million. EBADI NOBEL PEACE PRIZE 101003
4 posted on 10/11/2003 12:50:24 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
Troubled backdrop for Iranian's Nobel award

Financial Times
By Mohsen Asgari in Tehran, Najmeh Bozorgmehr in London, Guy Dinmore in Washington and Christopher Brown-Humes in Stockholm
Oct 10, 2003

In awarding the 2003 Nobel peace prize to Shirin Ebadi, the Iranian human rights activist, the Nobel committee said it wanted to inspire "all those who struggle for human rights and democracy in her country - [and] in the Muslim world".

But the award comes at a difficult time in the west's relations with Iran and the Islamic world.

President George W. Bush last year included Iran alongside Iraq and North Korea in an "axis of evil", and Tehran is sensitive to US and European pressure over its nuclear programme. Alongside many Arab countries, Iran is determined to resist Washington's demands that it end support for militant Palestinian groups.

While some senior politicians on Friday told the Financial Times that they welcomed Mrs Ebadi's success, state-run media barely mentioned the award.

Elahe Kulaie, a leading female member of parliament, congratulated the Nobel committee for its "understanding of Iranian society" but warned that "hardliners" in Iran might accuse Mrs Ebadi of "being backed by western countries".

In the wider Muslim world, Tahany el-Gebaly, Egypt's first female judge, complained that Mrs Ebadi had been chosen ahead of "many fiery Muslims whose actions and positions are a lot more outspoken, but who are anti-American or [against] western policy in the region".

As a lawyer since 1984, Mrs Ebadi, a 56-year-old mother and committed Muslim, has taken up a variety of cases, driven by tough determination and a fundamental belief that equal rights for women and children are entirely compatible with Islam.

She has worked closely with members of parliament and senior clerics to try to revise laws governing divorce and inheritance rights, and to end "blood money" and execution by stoning.

Appointed as Iran's first judge in 1974, she stepped down after the 1979 revolution decreed that all judges should be male. Her growing public campaigning of recent years has reflected a new openness in Iranian society fostered by Mohammad Khatami, the reformist president elected in 1997.

Reactions to her work - with opposition from many clerics within the judiciary and support within parliament and elsewhere - has illustrated Iran's social and political divisions.

In her most celebrated case she acted for the family of Leila Fathi, a nine-year-old girl raped and killed by three men in western Iran some 10 years ago.

The men were captured and sentenced to death. But for the executions to be carried out, Iranian law obliges the victim's family to pay "blood money" to the families of the condemned men.

Because a woman's value is deemed half that of a man, Leila's family faced paying the difference, which was around $10,000 for each killer. To raise the money the parents sold their house and belongings, and were about to sell their kidneys when Ayatollah Mohammad Yazdi, then head of the judiciary, ordered the state to pay the rest.

Mrs Ebadi had limited success in the case - one killer escaped from prison, another committed suicide and a third has launched an appeal - but she won support for her campaign against the disparity in "blood money" from Yousef Saanei, a grand ayatollah in Qom.

Undeterred even when she was herself briefly arrested three years ago, Mrs Ebadi has long argued that Iranian women, who now claim 60 per cent of university places, enjoy higher social status than their peers elsewhere in the Middle East.

"I see a bright future for Iranian women," she told the Financial Times earlier this year. "Their determination to gain their legitimate rights is increasing."
5 posted on 10/11/2003 12:57:43 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn
Big ol' Bumperoo.
6 posted on 10/11/2003 12:57:49 AM PDT by Mortimer Snavely (Ban tag lines!)
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To: All
Bulgaria Considered for US Missile Base to Deter Iran

Sofia Morning News

The US government is considering stationing defensive missiles in a number of European countries against a potential attack from Iran, Germany's Sueddeutsche newspaper reported on Friday issue citing State Department sources.

US defence policy specialist Benjamin Schreer of the German Institute for International and Security Affairs told the newspaper that Romania and Bulgaria could be the "first choices."

The daily quoted a high-ranking US diplomat as saying that the Americans would like to develop a defensive missile network with Europeans but doubted whether a deal could be reached quickly by NATO.

Because of these concerns, Washington may pursue bilateral agreements with individual European countries for deployment in 2006 anti-ballistic systems in exchange for economic aid, the Sueddeutsche said.

The US military last month unveiled an upgraded Patriot anti-missile system in South Korea designed to thwart a missile blitz from North Korea.
7 posted on 10/11/2003 1:44:06 AM PDT by F14 Pilot
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To: DoctorZIn
Montazeri: "happy" over Nobel prize for rights lawyer

Saturday, October 11, 2003 - ©2003

TEHRAN, Oct 10 (AFP) -- Iran's top dissident cleric, Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri, said he was "happy" upon hearing of the Nobel Peace Prize win of Iranian female rights activist Shirin Ebadi.

"I am happy that an Iranian personality has been awarded such a merit," the cleric said in a brief statement given to AFP by his son.

Montazeri was once the designated successor to Iran's Islamic revolutionary leader, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, but fell from grace and was then placed under house arrest for five years in the central holy city of Qom.

An outspoken critic of the regime, he was freed from house arrest earlier this year.
8 posted on 10/11/2003 1:53:30 AM PDT by F14 Pilot
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To: All
Asefi: Ebadi`s Nobel Peace Prize source of pleasure


Tehran, Oct 11
The Foreign Ministry spokesman here on Friday
expressed pleasure over the success of Ms Shirin Ebadi, an Iranian
university professor and lawyer, to receive this year`s Nobel Peace
Prize for defending the rights of children.
The spokesman further said that the award is indicative of the
high status of women in the Islamic Republic of Iran.
The Nobel Committee on Friday awarded the 2003 Nobel Peace Prize
to Iranian lawyer Shirin Ebadi.
She is the first Muslim woman to receive a Nobel prize.

9 posted on 10/11/2003 2:23:19 AM PDT by F14 Pilot
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To: DoctorZIn; McGavin999; Eala; AdmSmith; dixiechick2000; nuconvert; onyx; Pro-Bush; Valin; ...
One-woman machine who took on Iran's clerics

Award will make her even more formidable

Dan De Luce in Tehran
Saturday October 11, 2003
The Guardian

She is small in stature but a force of nature in and out of the courtroom. Shirin Ebadi is a one-woman human-rights machine, inspiring students through her law faculty lectures, forcing judges to acknowledge contradictions in Iran's legal code and lobbying parliament to protect the rights of children born out of marriage.
She has already embarrassed the conservative clerics ruling Iran but yesterday's announcement from the Norwegian Nobel committee will make life more awkward for the defenders of the country's rigid laws. For Ms Ebadi and her colleagues the peace prize is like a shot in the arm for their efforts. "I think this prize gives me and Iranian people more courage to work for human rights and peace," she told the BBC in Paris.

What must have the hardliners worried is the following: Ms Ebadi has among the vast youth population, who see her as a courageous heroine standing up to a theocratic system. "I'm so happy," said Reza, a graduate student in Tehran. "I am proud to be an Iranian today."

With young women getting educated in unprecedented numbers, Ms Ebadi senses society is changing in ways that the conservative establishment does not understand. "Sixty-three per cent of entering university students are women. They see that the laws are not suitable for the conditions that are emerging," Ms Ebadi, who has two grown-up daughters, told the Guardian recently. "Because so many women are protesting against their conditions, things will have to improve."

Along with a several other lawyers, Ms Ebadi has launched a non-governmental organisation, the Centre for the Defenders of Human Rights, which will benefit from the Nobel prize of $1.3m (about £780,000). "She is one of the most active lawyers in Iran, working to promote human rights for women, children and all citizens," said her colleague, Mohammad Fayfzadeh. "She has performed brilliantly."

There was a time when the 56-year-old Ms Ebadi was fighting a lonely battle. After the 1979 revolution that toppled the regime of the shah, Ms Ebadi was told she would have to step down as Iran's first female judge. "The head of the court told me I could not work as a judge because I am a woman. He said it was forbidden by sharia law," she said.

Now prominent lawyers and MPs agree that women should serve as judges. "Many women are now working as legal advisers to judges. It's only a matter of time before we have female judges, " she said. "We have been fed so many things in the name of Islam and sharia law."

She uses sharia law, which forms the basis of Iran's laws, to argue that there is no legal foundation for discriminatory rules that give women an inferior status. She cites the writings of senior clerics and other areas of the law that have been freshly interpreted to adapt to modern circumstances.

In one case Ms Ebadi has fought against "blood money" provisions that put the value of a woman's life at half that of a man's in financial compensation. "I accept these cases to show what the consequences of inadequate, inappropriate laws can be," she said.

Through her lobbying in parliament and the courts, Ms Ebadi succeeded in her campaign to grant legal rights to children born outside of marriage though they are still denied the right to any inheritance. "I am still fighting to get that changed."

In a country where many dissidents have been discredited or forced underground, Ms Ebadi stands out for her single-minded commitment to human rights without ties to partisan politics or polemics.

She has spent time in solitary confinement and received a suspended sentence of 15 months for videotaping an interview with a former paramilitary. In the interview, the paramilitary described an at tempted an assassination attempt against a member of the cabinet and other methods of repression.

Ms Ebadi, who works late hours in her office alone, acknowledges the threat she is facing. "Defending human rights in Iran has unavoidable dangers," she said.

The most chilling event for Ms Ebadi was when a document leaked out from the intelligence ministry that included names of intellectuals who had been murdered in mysterious circumstances. It was a list of political enemies apparently singled out for liquidation.

"I'm like any other human being, I experienced fear. It comes to you like hunger, you don't have a choice. But I have learned how to overcome this feeling and not let it interfere with my work."

She wears the head scarf or hejab as required by Iran's dress code and though she has no affection for it, she sees it as a low priority among a long list of women's grievances. "There are much more im portant issues that need to be addressed."

Ms Ebadi credits the Islamic revolutions strict dress code and segregation of the sexes at university with opening the door to emancipation. Once the universities became a place where a father could send his daughter without worrying about "moral corruption", society began to change, she said. "There is a saying that modernity is born on the street. And when a woman steps out on the street, she cannot be a traditional woman anymore."

Extracts from the Nobel committee's citation

It is a pleasure for the Norwegian Nobel committee to award the Peace prize to a woman who is part of the Muslim world, and of whom that world can be proud.

As a lawyer, judge, lecturer, writer and activist, she has spoken out clearly and strongly in her country, Iran, and far beyond its borders. She has stood up as a sound professional, a courageous person, and has never heeded the threats to her own safety. In an era of violence, she has consistently supported nonviolence. It is fundamental to her view that the supreme political power in a community must be built on democratic elections.

We hope that the people of Iran will feel joyous that for the first time in history one of their citizens has been awarded the Nobel Peace prize, and we hope the prize will be an inspiration for all those who struggle for human rights and democracy in her country, in the Muslim world, and in all countries where the fight for human rights needs support.,12858,1060839,00.html
10 posted on 10/11/2003 2:58:59 AM PDT by F14 Pilot
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To: DoctorZIn; McGavin999; Eala; AdmSmith; dixiechick2000; nuconvert; onyx; Pro-Bush; Valin; ...
Iran's hard-liners denounce Nobel Peace Prize for woman activist as interference in internal affairs

ALI AKBAR DAREINI, Associated Press Writer
SF Gate daily

Iran's powerful hard-liners on Saturday accused the Nobel committee of meddling in the country's internal affairs by awarding the annual peace prize to an Iranian dissident.

Shirin Ebadi won the 2003 prize on Friday for her human rights and democracy activism. She is the first Muslim woman to win the award.

"The prize is a support for secular movements and against the ideals of the 1979 Islamic revolution," said Hamid Reza Taraqi, a former lawmaker and member of the hard-line Islamic Coalition Society.

"The Norwegian Nobel Committee, against its original objectives of promoting peace, has turned into a political tool in the hand of foreigners to interfere in the internal affairs of our country," Taraqi said.

On Saturday, Ebadi was the top story on the front page in the reformist dailies, but hard-line newspapers ignored the news.

The hard-line daily Siyasat-e-Rooz gave priority on its front page to the discovery of an Iron Age-cemetery in Spain. Jomhuri-e-Eslami, another hard-line paper, gave the news a small space on page two: "Westerners give Ebadi Nobel peace prize."

Pro-reform figures were more gracious, and the administration of reformist President Mohammad Khatami congratulated Ebadi's win in a statement provided to the AP late Friday.

At a news conference Friday in Paris, where she appeared without a head scarf, Ebadi said she believes there is no conflict between human rights and the tenets of Islam.

"Therefore, the religious ones should also welcome this award," she said. "The prize means you can be a Muslim and at the same time have human rights."

Nobel committee chairman Ole Danbolt Mjoes said the decision was a message to the world.

"This is a message to the Iranian people, to the Muslim world, to the whole world, that human value, the fight for freedom, the fight for rights of women and children should be at the center," he said. "I hope the award of the peace to Ebadi can help strengthen and lend support to the cause of human rights in Iran."

The committee said Ebadi represents reformed Islam, and lauded her for arguing for a new interpretation of Islamic law which is in harmony with vital human rights such as democracy, equality before the law.

Ebadi, 56, was Iran's first female judge and received her law degree from the University of Tehran.

She was president of the city court of Tehran from 1975-1979, when she was forced to resign. Since the 1979 revolution she has been an activist for democracy and the rights of refugees, women and children.

As a lawyer, she represented families of writers and intellectuals killed in 1999, and worked to expose conspirators behind an attack by pro-clergy assailants on students at Tehran University in 1999.

Ebadi and another lawyer, Mohsen Rahami, were arrested in July 2000 for alleged links to a videotape that purportedly revealed ties between government officials and hard-line vigilantes. They were released from jail after three weeks, but later given suspended prison sentences and barred from practicing law for five years.

Ebadi's husband, Javad Tavassolian, told AP Saturday that the ban was overruled by the appeals court and never enforced.
11 posted on 10/11/2003 5:37:24 AM PDT by F14 Pilot
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To: F14 Pilot
"The Norwegian Nobel Committee, against its original objectives of promoting peace, has turned into a political tool in the hand of foreigners to interfere in the internal affairs of our country," Taraqi said.

I am conflicted. Arafat and Carter received the Nobel Peace Prize, when they are most undeserving. And now, to have an Iranian earn it, when they are most deserving and in need of recognition of the plight of Iranians, seems justified. But, I wonder if this will return legitimacy to the award. Politics is messy.

12 posted on 10/11/2003 5:46:29 AM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
Remember that these statements made by the Hard-liners of Iran.
They don't recoginze Global society organizations.
13 posted on 10/11/2003 6:28:22 AM PDT by F14 Pilot
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To: F14 Pilot
You are correct.

They would never rejoice for the cause of human rights.
14 posted on 10/11/2003 6:29:19 AM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: Pan_Yans Wife; All
EU foreign ministers to debate resolution on Iran human rights

11 October 2003
EU Business

EU foreign ministers will hold talks Monday in Luxembourg on the possibility of issuing a resolution condemning human rights violations in Iran, European diplomatic sources said, adding that the EU was split over the issue.

"The issue is not clear cut," one diplomat said in reference to the split in opinion within the 15-member European Union.

Ireland, the Netherlands and Britain, to a lesser degree, are the main countries calling for a resolution to be presented to the UN commission for human rights in Geneva, with support from the Czech Republic from the side of future EU members who do not yet have the right to vote.

Italy, which currently holds the EU rotating presidency, France, Germany, Spain and chief EU diplomat Javier Solana have been more reluctant on the issue, the same source said.

Solana's spokeswoman Cristina Gallach said Saturday that Iran had this week shown signs of "opening up" with regards to human rights during two days of "political dialogue" in Brussels with EU officials.

"There was some small progress," Gallach said in reference to Tehran's stated intent to revise its stance on the international convention against torture, to which it has so far refused to sign up.

The Iranian delegation at the talks, comprised of officials but also of NGO representatives and university staff, also gave replies to several concrete cases, including a list of 30 political prisoners on which the EU demanded information.

"Until now, it's a subject on which Iran said it could not accept intereference," said Gallach.

"It's an important step, but it is a small step. There remains a string of things we consider unacceptable," she said. "We are still convinced that the human rights situation in Iran is very, very bad."

15 posted on 10/11/2003 6:33:56 AM PDT by F14 Pilot
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Comment #16 Removed by Moderator

To: F14 Pilot
Free Iran, Now!
17 posted on 10/11/2003 7:31:54 AM PDT by blackie
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To: blackie
Thanks for supporting the movement and thread.
18 posted on 10/11/2003 7:33:48 AM PDT by F14 Pilot
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To: DoctorZIn
19 posted on 10/11/2003 7:37:24 AM PDT by windchime
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To: F14 Pilot
Solana's spokeswoman Cristina Gallach said Saturday that Iran had this week shown signs of "opening up" with regards to human rights during two days of "political dialogue" in Brussels with EU officials.

The hardliners cannot be happy that the Nobel Prize has drawn more attention to Iran's betrayal of human rights. I know many, many people were saddened that the Pope did not receive the prize. But, the publicity at this juncture, is extremely fortuitous.

Perhaps the EU will be pressured to stand up to Iran.

20 posted on 10/11/2003 7:40:54 AM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: F14 Pilot
I'm here to serve. :-/
21 posted on 10/11/2003 7:43:56 AM PDT by blackie
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To: All
Downed Israeli 'alive in Tehran'

Friday 10 October 2003

Israeli navigator Ron Arad, missing since his plane came down over Lebanon in 1986, is alive and being held in a prison near Tehran, three exiled Iranian officials have claimed.

The controversial allegation appeared in an interview published in the Israeli daily Yediot Aharonot on Friday. The newspaper said it was not able to verify the reports, which come at a sensitive time in negotiations for a prisoner exchange between Israel and the Tehran-backed Lebanese militia Hizb Allah.

But Iran has consistently denied any connection to the missing israeli navigator.

"There has never been any connection between Arad and Iran and there isn't (one) now either," Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid-Reza Assefi said last Sunday.

The newspaper's sources are two intelligence officers and a diplomat who fled Iran in recent years.

“He was very thin, weighing about 60kg. He was in a wheelchair. He had quite a thin beard. His face was wrinkled, he was staring into space and had a sad look,” said one of them, who reportedly saw Arad three years ago.

“One source said that when Ron Arad was imprisoned in Tehran in 1998, he was hospitalised twice for heart trouble,” the newspaper wrote.

Escape attempt

According to the Yediot, Arad tried to escape his captors while still in Lebanon. He was then transferred to Syria in 1994 and later to Iran.

“Before Ron Arad's transfer to Iran, it was decided to operate on his knees in order to paralyse the lower part of his legs, with the purpose of preventing him from having any possibility of attempting to escape,” the paper alleged.

According to Israeli public radio, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon held a special cabinet meeting on Friday to decide the government's position on the issue.

In October 2000, Hizb Allah captured three Israeli soldiers - whom Israel believes dead - in a disputed border area. They also seized businessman Elhanan Tannenbaum, a reserve colonel whom the guerrilla group alleges was a spy.

Israel holds - mainly without charge or prospect of trial - around 20 Lebanese detainees. These include Shiite Muslim leaders Abd al-Karim Obaid and Mustafa Dirani, who were captured to be used as a bargaining chip in a prisoner swap with Hizb Allah.
22 posted on 10/11/2003 7:56:47 AM PDT by F14 Pilot
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
Iran's 1st Nobel Peace Prize Bares Nation's Rifts

Sat Oct 11

By Christian Oliver

Iran's first Nobel Peace Prize, awarded to human rights lawyer Shirin Ebadi, has exposed the battlelines between the nation's conservatives and reformists who exchanged fire in Saturday's newspapers.

Iran's conservatives accused the Nobel committee of pandering to the West's political agenda by awarding its Peace Prize to Ebadi. Ranged against them, reformists hailed her as a catalyst for change.

Ebadi, 56, is a thorn in the side of hard-liners and a vocal campaigner on women's rights who has taken on the defense of political activists -- cases others feared to touch.

While conservative-controlled state-run television and radio were still agonizing over how to broadcast the news, Iranian girls had seen Friday's award on U.S. satellite stations and were excitedly ringing each other and sending text messages.

President Mohammad Khatami's reformist government congratulated Ebadi.

Assadollah Badamchian, who heads the political branch of the conservative Coalition Party, was skeptical about the Nobel committee's motives.

"It is natural that somebody who calls herself a reformist and is supported by Powell, Blair and Bush receives this prize," he was quoted as saying in Saturday's newspapers.

Ali Yousefpour, president of the Muslim Journalists' Association said Ebadi's award echoed the prize given to Egypt's Anwar Sadat, loathed by hard-liners who accuse him of selling out to arch-foe Israel and sheltering the exiled shah.

"This award has been given those who work in the line of Western interests or against Islam," he was quoted as saying.

NO MENTION<> Though the reformist press splashed Ebadi's gentle smile across the front pages, conservative newspapers such as Resalat, one of whose editors dismissed the award as political, made no mention of her victory.

Other hardline periodicals tucked a few dismissive column inches in the back pages and the conservative Jomhuri-ye Eslami even confused her with another woman lawyer.

However, Ali Moazami, a columnist in the reformist daily Sharq, said the award would offer wind to the sails of the reform movement.

"It is an encouragement for those who want freedom to raise their voices," he wrote. "Everyone seemed to interpret it as a sign of cries being heard."

Another journalist who declined to be named hailed the decision as a message to Iran's reformists that they were not alone.

"I was so happy for Iran when I heard this news," he told Reuters. "This is the best signal for the opposition and the students." Students have often been at the forefront of pro-democracy protest in Iran.

The reformist-controlled official IRNA news agency carried a piece saying: "The award Iran received on Friday was one of the sweetest prizes in the history of the land." The phrase played with Ebadi's first name Shirin which is Persian for sweet. (Additional reporting by Parisa Hafezi and Parinoosh Arami)

Iranian girls had seen Friday's award on U.S. satellite stations and were excitedly ringing each other and sending text messages.

Let freedom ring!

23 posted on 10/11/2003 7:57:39 AM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: F14 Pilot
Thanks for the heads up!
24 posted on 10/11/2003 8:02:59 AM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: F14 Pilot; DoctorZIn
Iran Denies Knows Fate of Missing Israeli Airman

Sat October 11, 2003

SIDON, Lebanon (Reuters) - Iran's ambassador to Lebanon said on Saturday Tehran had no information on a missing Israeli airman whose fate is overshadowing prisoner exchange talks between Israel and Lebanon's Hizbollah. Syrian- and Iranian-backed Hizbollah has been negotiating with Israel through German mediators for several months on exchange of four Israeli captives for some 15 Lebanese, dozens of Arabs and hundreds of Palestinians in Israeli jails.

Hizbollah said on Friday a deal could be concluded soon, but the fate of an Israeli airforce navigator, Ron Arad, shot down over Lebanon in 1986, has cast a shadow over the talks.

Hizbollah denies knowledge of Arad's whereabouts, but Israel believes he is being held in Iran.

"The Israeli enemy is accustomed always to making such false accusations against the Islamic Republic of Iran," Massoud Idrissi said. "We have denied this report and said that we do not have any information on the fate of the airman Arad," he told reporters during a visit to the southern port city of Sidon.

Several Israeli officials, media and pressure groups have said any prisoner swap deal should include Arad.

At the top of Hizbollah's list of detainees it wants freed are Hizbollah official Sheikh Abdel Karim Obeid and guerrilla commander Mustafa al-Dirani, whose group first captured Arad.

Israel, which pulled its troops out of southern Lebanon in 2000 under pressure from Hizbollah, kidnapped Obeid and Dirani from their homes over a decade ago as bargaining chips for information on Arad.;jsessionid=RDNAXJT5M5TJ4CRBAEKSFFA?type=worldNews&storyID=3597374

25 posted on 10/11/2003 8:05:49 AM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
Good posts, Thanks!
26 posted on 10/11/2003 8:28:02 AM PDT by F14 Pilot
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To: DoctorZIn; dixiechick2000; Pan_Yans Wife; nuconvert; happygrl; Cindy; Alamo-Girl; ...
Iran's holiest city launches its first all-female taxi service

By Behzad Farsian in Qom
(Filed: 11/10/2003)

Iran's holiest city now has a woman-only taxi service, which its founders say is striking a blow for female rights.

There is a very Iranian flavour to the business. In the heat of Qom's midday sun the taxi driver is likely to be dressed in a black cloak from head to toe.

The Nesa taxi service was launched 10 months ago with 10 drivers and became the first all-woman taxi service in Iran. Based in Qom, they carry only women and pre-pubescent boys.

"Women in Qom have less opportunities than in other [Iranian] cities and they had no public role in day-to-day city life," said Nayereh Aghaz, founder of the firm. She argues that the company does more than provide a service, but also promotes the rights of women in Qom.

The process has not been trouble free. Until a month ago, the company was allowed to employ only married women at least 23 years old who wear the Islamic chador, the black flowing robe. "We have been given permission by the local council to employ needy single drivers," said Aghaz, "particularly those who must work."

The company hires women needing financial aid or who must provide a family income. There was some shock among men when the service opened, Aghaz said, but that is changing.

"The men's monopoly in our religious city is beginning to end and they have seen that we are not just housewives," she said. "Now I have men calling us regularly wanting their wives to use our service." Since the opening of Nesa other cities have followed suit.

Unlike some other Islamic countries in the Middle East, such as Saudi Arabia, women are allowed to drive in Iran.
27 posted on 10/11/2003 9:48:24 AM PDT by F14 Pilot
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To: F14 Pilot
Good post.
28 posted on 10/11/2003 9:50:36 AM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
Oct. 11, 2003

Report: Israel has plans for strike on Iran nuke sites


The German newspaper Der Spiegel reported Saturday that Israel has prepared plans for a pre-emptive strike against Iran's nuclear facilities in order to halt Iran's progress towards attaining nuclear weapons.

Der Spiegel reported that a special unit of the Mossad received an order two months ago to prepare a detailed plan to destroy Iran's nuclear sites. According to the paper, the Mossad's plan is ready and has been delivered to the Israeli Air Force, which will carry out the strike.

The newspaper said its source is an IAF fighter-bomber pilot, who said the plan to take out Iran's nuclear sites was "complex, yet possible." The paper added that Israel knows Iran has six nuclear sites, all of which would be attacked simultaneously by Israeli jets.

The paper added that the Mossad believes Iran has reached an advanced stage in its nuclear program and is capable of producing enriched uranium, a vital ingredient of nuclear bombs. The report went on to say that three of Iran's nuclear sites were totally unknown to the outside world.

The paper said Israeli defense officials told Der Spiegel that if the UN's International Atomic Energy Agency's inspectors visited those three sites, the Iranians would have "something to worry about because they have something to hide."

Israel has long sounded the alarm regarding Iran's nuclear intentions and has hinted over recent years that it might strike Iran's nuclear facilities at Bushehr and elsewhere, just as it hit Iraq's reactor at Osirak in June 1981.

'We think that next summer, if Iran is not stopped, it will reach self-sufficiency and this is the point of no return. After this self-capability, it will take them some two years to make a nuclear bomb,' OC Intelligence Maj.-Gen. Aharon Ze'evi (Farkash) announced on TV Channel 1 two in August.

It would not be an exaggeration to say that the IAF has devoted the bulk of its procurement funds in the past decade to strike at Iran's nuclear and ballistic missile facilities. Generals and Israeli leaders have openly declared that the tens of billions of shekels spent are to extend its reach for just this possibility.

An extremist Islamic regime which has publicly vowed to destroy the Jewish state, Iran is intent on developing the bomb. Stopping this is a daunting challenge for Israel's miltary establishment.

Iran has warned Israel against any military attack on its nuclear sites, saying Israel would pay a very heavy price if it did.

29 posted on 10/11/2003 10:02:31 AM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
Oct. 11, 2003

Report: Israel adds nukes to its submarines


According to a recent report in the Los Angeles Times, Israel has modified American-supplied cruise missiles to carry nuclear warheads on submarines, giving it the ability to launch atomic weapons from land, air and beneath the sea, senior US and Israeli officials were quoted on Saturday by the paper.

"The previously undisclosed submarine capability bolsters Israel's deterrence in the event that Iran develops nuclear weapons," the LA Times report said.

Two Bush administration officials described the missile modification and an Israeli official confirmed it. All three spoke on condition their names not be disclosed, the paper added.

The Americans said they were disclosing the information to caution "Israel's enemies at a time of heightened tensions in the region and concern over Iran's alleged ambitions."

Israel will not confirm or deny that it possesses nuclear arms.

According to the LA Times, "the consensus in the U.S. intelligence community and among outside experts is that Israel, with possibly 200 nuclear weapons, has the fifth- or sixth-largest arsenal in the world."

In 1999 Israel bought and received three Dolphin-class diesel submarines from Germany. With a traveling range of 4,500 kilometers, these vessels have the ability to launch cruise missiles, and can remain at sea for up to a month.

The attempt to arm them with nuclear missiles was first disclosed in a book published in June 2002 by the Carnegie Endowment. The Washington Post published an article about the effort a few days later.

The LA Times reported that recent interviews with officials in Washington and Tel Aviv provided the first confirmation that Israel can now deliver nuclear weapons from beneath the sea.

30 posted on 10/11/2003 10:04:28 AM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
October 11, 2003

Iranian Women See Ebadi As Feminist Force By BRIAN MURPHY



Nine years ago, sociologist Saeed Madeni was jailed for three months for writing an article about Shirin Ebadi's campaign for women's rights.

"Feminism was considered as bad as atheism at that time," Madeni said Saturday, a day after Ebadi became the surprise winner of the Nobel Peace Prize.

Some limits on Iranian women have been rolled back since Madeni's arrest. But Ebadi's new international stature is considered a powerful tool to strike at more barriers - including laws that stripped Ebadi, Iran's first women judge, of her right to preside in court.

"This is an important moment for Iranian women," said Madeni, a researcher at a state-funded institute. "It could be a real turning point. I think Iranian reformers always expected a man to lead them, but it turns out differently."

The Norwegian Nobel Committee's selection of the relatively unknown lawyer-activist over others, including Pope John Paul II, was widely interpreted as a message to the Islamic world to expand women's roles on all levels.

"I am so happy I can't control myself," said Parvin Ardalan, an activist who has often joined Ebadi in challenges of Iran's ruling clerics. "This prize will push the Iranian women's movement to a brighter future."

The 1979 Islamic Revolution wiped out the Western-style of life and ambitions that were available to Iranian women. But even the most conservative clerics recognized that Iran's culture would not tolerate the heavy restrictions imposed in nations such as Saudi Arabia.

Slowly, Iranian women have made advances as the theocracy answers to the influence of reformers. The clerics have ceded ground on social issues, while making no concessions that would erode their political power.

The 290-member parliament has 11 women. Earlier this month, Iran's first women police officers joined the force.

Rules on the required coverings for women in public have been eased: hair pours out from under head scarves and the formless coat, known as the manteau, once favored by Iranian women has been largely replaced by shorter and tailored knee-length coverings.

But many doors remain closed.

A woman needs her husband's permission to work or travel abroad, and a man's court testimony is considered twice as important as a woman's.

Jobs such as judge and posts with the ruling inner circle are for men only. The powerful Guardian Council, which vets political candidates and interprets laws, has indicated women are barred from becoming president. But that interpretation could be challenged by Ebadi's supporters if momentum builds for her candidacy to succeed President Mohammad Khatami in 2005.

Ebadi has argued for a new interpretation of Islamic law that embraces democracy and equality before the law.

U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan saw a direct connection between the Nobel decision and demands for a greater voice for women.

"I hope this award will also underscore the importance of expanding human rights throughout the world and also how women speak out and insist on their rights," Annan said Friday.

The new Nobel laureate is scheduled to return to Tehran from Paris on Tuesday. Khatami's office - which has praised the award - said top government envoys would greet her.

The response from the hard-liners controlling the real power has ranged from indifference to harsh denunciations.

Conservative newspapers either ignored the news or published small items - in contrast to the banner headlines in the reformist press. State radio and television mentioned Ebadi at the tail end of their broadcasts.

"The prize is a support for secular movements, and against the ideals of the 1979 Islamic revolution," said Hamid Reza Taraqi, a former lawmaker and member of the hard-line Islamic Coalition Society.

31 posted on 10/11/2003 10:44:19 AM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: DoctorZIn
Takeyh: Iran seeking to avoid a visit from General Sanchez By Tandice Ghajar


Washington DC, October 9, 2003 – As the days creep toward the October 31 deadline for Iran to comply with IAEA protocols regarding its nuclear status, "Iranologist" Ray Takeyh finds himself frequently called upon to characterize Iran's outlook and policy alternatives with regard to nuclear development. Today as a guest of the South Asian Studies department at John Hopkins University's School of Advanced International Studies, the National Defense University scholar fit his analysis of issues of nuclear weapons and terrorism into a sketch of the trajectory of Iran's foreign relations since 1979 (and the isolation of the decade under Khomeini), which he sees as "a halting process of transition from a revolutionary state to a pragmatic state," though the process of "graduating" is "neither absolute nor comprehensive."

He thinks that the Iranian approach to non-proliferation, terrorism and changes in the political landscape of its neighbors has increasingly reflected and will demonstrate, to some extent, an awareness that direct confrontation with the United States is not a risk the state can afford.

On Iran's self-limitation of relationships with Al-Qaeda or saboteurs in Iraq, for example, Takeyh pointed out how a cautious outlook, if not rhetoric, may be required in this era of an American doctrine of military intervention as a preventative measure for both proliferation and terrorism: "Flirting with terrorist organizations can not just get you condemnation, but a visit from General Sanchez." In fact, he said, even directly after September 11, Hizbollah leadership was called to Tehran with a message of, "This better not be you!" Takeyh also revealed in the question and answer period that Iranian conservatives have secretly sent representatives to study the China model: political passivity for economic rewards.

Takeyh, Director of Studies at the Near East and South Asian Institute of the NDU, posits that a realization of the necessity for some form of relationship with the United States has affected Iranian policy especially in the past two years, though he stipulated, "We can't really speak of Iranian government; we have to speak of Iranian governments." He implied that the "perplexing impasse" on certain issues between conservatives/hard-liners and liberals/reformists Additionally, Takeyh pointed out that while the American instinct is to interact with other regimes based on package agreements that incorporate all areas of overlapping concerns, the Iranians would prefer what he calls "compartmentalized pragmatism," relations with the United States on certain issues where there exists a coincidence of interests, such as a stable Afghanistan, which led them to participate cordially in the Bonn and Tokyo conferences on the matter.

As well, Iran's policies on issues that have historically been guided by their religious ideological cores have seen significant shifts as the need for economic growth and some friends in the international community outweigh them. For example, Takeyh cited the example that though Iran's longstanding and tried relationship with Hizbollah remains intact and problematic, the policy of opposition to a Palestinian-Israeli peace has been narrowed to opposition of an American-brokered peace. The shift in part represents a following of Saudi Arabia's lead, with which (as early as 1995) the Iranian government prioritized a relationship over support for Shi'a dissidents in Saudi Arabia, though it is a state that Khomeini spent pages of his will denouncing.

The pattern of non-involvement in Shi'a minority rights can be observed most places except for Lebanon, says Takeyh, such as in Kashmir, because of the primacy of Iran's relationship with Moscow, and even in Iraq, though Iran does hope to have interlocutors (though not necessarily representatives) in the future government. Additionally, he marks Khatami's election as the beginning of active Iranian interests in trade and international dialogue with members of the European Union and India, for example, with whom efforts to establish a viable commercial relationship based on their purchase of Iran's natural gas continue.

With respect to non-proliferation compliance, Takeyh believes that there is a real debate going on in Iran now, for "this is not an issue that breaks down on pragmatist and conservative/hardliner." Outlining three schools of thought on the issue, he predicted that Iran will sign the additional IAEA protocols in the next couple of months, approaching but not crossing the threshold (as India has done), he says. The first school of thought, in favor of developing nuclear weapons, uses the "dangerous neighborhood" argument, which Takeyh considers somewhat difficult to support. Iraq was formerly a threat because of its chemical weapons programs, but no longer, Pakistan is less frequently cited because the relationship is murky and it is a fellow Muslim country, and Israel is most accurately characterized as a condition conflict in which both parties use proxies-Iran acts through Hizbollah and other such pro-Palestinian groups, and Israel acts through US-imposed sanctions.

The second school of thought on nuclear development advocates going forward with a program under IAEA auspices, during the three-to-four-year window it takes to implement full monitoring, and the two years it would take them to complete your survey, but negotiating and splitting the coalition on the US side all the while. Finally, some of those Takeyh refers to as pragmatists or reformists take the position that for Iran to possess nuclear weapons would only exacerbate its strategic vulnerabilities, resulting in further isolation and commercial weakening. Among most views there is some consideration of the national pride, the question of why some states may have nuclear weapons while Iran is told they should not be among them.

In the future, then, Takeyh sees coalitions shifting based upon Iran's relations with the United States, and an Iranian interest in the security architecture of the post-war Persian Gulf because it is crucial for access to the international petroleum market. Hardliners will continue to desire isolation, because under its conditions internal concessions are not needed as "you can talk about external threats, external enemies which you yourself created."

Ray Takeyh recently published an article in the journal entitled National Interest including many of the themes of this talk, and has written a soon-to-be-published book, Receding Shadow of the Prophet: The Rise and Fall of Radical Political Islam. He has written extensively on various international issues and was previously a fellow at Yale University in International Security Studies.

32 posted on 10/11/2003 12:38:58 PM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
Ron Arad Was Paralyzed To Prevent Escape Oct 10 '03

According to the testimony of three Iranian exiles, Ron Arad, unable to walk, was held until at least three years ago in a small and secret prison cell in northern-Teheran.

The Hebrew news site Ynet contains a detailed account of the testimonies of the three Iranian exiles who said they saw Ron Arad. According to the picture drawn by the three - which is being treated respectfully but cautiously by Israeli intelligence - Arad, unable to walk, was held at least until three years ago in a small and secret prison cell in northern-Teheran.

The testimonies of the three Iranians, which were gathered at different times over the past three years and mostly within the last three months, tell many heretofore unknown details of Ron Arad's tribulations over the past ten years. In mid-'94, the Iranians purchased him from Mustafa Dirani, who took cruel control of him in Lebanon, has since been captured by special IDF forces, and is now being held in Israel.

The Iranians brought him to Hizbullah headquarters in Lebanon, and later took him to Iran for a security interrogation. Arad was dressed in an Iranian Revolutionary Guard uniform and placed on a well-guarded truck bound for Damascus.

One source said that while still in Syria, a cruel operation paralyzing him at his knees and down was performed on him, in order to prevent him from trying to escape. He had apparently tried to do just that while still in Lebanon. The operation left Arad bound to a wheelchair. He was flown from Syria to Iran, held in various tightly-guarded buildings, and underwent some long interrogations sessions. No details on the interrogations were provided.

About five years ago, he was transferred to the prison in which he was seen three years ago and in which he might still be today. Each cell in the complex is 20 square meters in area, with no windows but with an air conditioning system. Two 24-hour video cameras are installed in each room, and the prisoners are taken out - one at a time - to breath fresh air twice a day.

One source said that he once asked Ron how he was doing, and received a short reply in Arabic, "with maybe a word in Hebrew as well." Arad was hospitalized at least twice because of heart problems.

Ron Arad was described as very thin and gaunt, with a sad and hollow expression, and as one who underwent tremendous hardships but has strong standing power.

Israeli sources say that the report has "more than an iota of truth."

A rally on behalf of Ron Arad will be held Thursday evening, October 16, at 19:30 at the Tel Aviv Museum Plaza in Tel Aviv.

33 posted on 10/11/2003 2:26:56 PM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: F14 Pilot

34 posted on 10/11/2003 3:37:41 PM PDT by PhilDragoo (Hitlery: das Butch von Buchenvald)
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
Death to Theocracy: America Must Act Now to Bring Down

Iran's Regime

by Robert W. Tracinski (July 3, 2003)

Article website address:

Summary: The reasons for toppling Iran's theocracy are far stronger--and more certain--than the reasons for invading Iraq.

The Bush administration has been right in recent weeks to focus attention on Iran--but not because of the threat that Iran might build nuclear weapons. Iran is the source of a much more powerful weapon of mass destruction that has already been unleashed against the West: the ideology of Islamic theocracy, with its tactic of state-sponsored terrorism.

And we must confront this threat now because we have an opportunity to strike at the very heart of Iran's regime by supporting its repudiation by its own citizens.

Iran has long been the leading ideological and material source of terrorism. The Ayatollah Khomeini was the first to develop a systematic theory of modern Islamic theocracy--a totalitarian fusion of mosque and state that is nearly identical to the philosophy later espoused by Osama bin Laden. Under the theocracy founded by Khomeini, Iran has been a systematic exporter of the ideas and methods of terrorism, backing international terror groups like Hamas and Hezbollah.

Most important, Iran was the first Islamic regime to strike systematically at the United States, from the seizing of our embassy in Tehran in 1979--to the bombing of the Marine barracks in Beirut in 1983--to the kidnapping of Americans in Lebanon through the 1980s--to Iran's probable involvement in the Khobar Towers bombing in 1996--to its sheltering of al Qaeda leaders responsible for the latest anti-American bombing in Saudi Arabia. For almost a quarter of a century, Iran has been at war against the United States of America.

The most dangerous precedent set by this not-so-secret war is the fact that America has refused to fight back. Every administration since 1979 has followed a policy of appeasement, from trading arms for hostages to the State Department's recent "secret" negotiations with the mullahs.

Iran's rulers use terrorism as a tactic because it allows them to wage war against America without suffering the consequences of a real confrontation with a powerful foe. But this only works because we have chosen not to respond.

Now, however, we have been given an unprecedented opportunity to strike at the heart of the mullah's power. When the Soviet Union fell, the world discovered that no one hated Communism more than those forced to live under it. Similarly, no one in the Middle East hates Islamic theocracy more than the young people of Iran. For four years, Iranian students have held mass protests in the streets. These protesters are openly fighting for the right principles: the idea of a secular government with freedom of speech and separation of mosque and state.

Despite arrests of opposition leaders, the rebellion is growing--and it has been emboldened by America's invasion of Iraq. A reporter with McLean's, a Canadian newsmagazine, recently traveled across Iran and heard one message: "they would welcome American troops if they were sent to remove the leadership." A young female student told him: "We want more freedom. We want the freedom to speak our minds, and we think America can bring this to us."

These demands for freedom are more than loose talk. The Iranian dissidents have set July 9 as the date for a massive general strike to protest against theocracy--an event that could initiate a showdown with the regime. This opportunity is too important, and the threat from Iran is too urgent, to allow for a moment's delay. It is crucial for Congress and the administration to provide immediate material, diplomatic, and moral support for the Iranian rebels.

But we dare not depend on these unarmed dissidents to overthrow the mullahs on their own. We cannot abandon them to an Iranian equivalent of the Tiananmen Square massacre. We must be prepared to use our overwhelming military might to destroy Iran's theocracy.

The reasons for toppling Iran's theocracy are far stronger--and more certain--than the reasons for invading Iraq. President Bush has described America's military victory in Iraq as the "turning of the tide" in the War on Terrorism. But supporting the rebellion against the mullahs would be more than a military victory. It could decisively turn the ideological tide in the Middle East. Helping to establish a secular government on the ruins of a theocracy would provide a vivid demonstration of the failure of Islamic fanaticism--and a model of a free, prosperous, secular society.

This is the main battle in the War on Terrorism, and it is about to commence. America only needs to decide whether we will choose to fight it.

About the Author: Mr. Tracinski is a fellow, writer, teacher and analyst with the Ayn Rand Institute and speaks regularly at conferences and on college campuses about the philosophy of the late novelist Ayn Rand.

35 posted on 10/11/2003 3:48:52 PM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife (You may forget the one with whom you have laughed, but never the one with whom you have wept.)
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To: yonif
We’ve Right to Hit Back: Syria
Israel Has Drawn Plans to Strike Iran: Report

Syria reserves the right to retaliate "by all means at its disposal" against any attack by Israel, the country’s foreign ministry spokeswoman said, a week after an Israeli air strike on a target in Syria.
"Syria reserves the right to retaliate by all means at its disposal," Bushra Kanafani told a press conference at the foreign ministry.
"We hope that the Israelis will not repeat their aggressions," she said, but pointed out that "the right to self defense is recognized by all states."
"We hope that we can all of us avoid further escalation, but if Israel continues to violate our sovereignty and the disengagement agreement, Syria is going to exert its right of self defense."

The agreement to which she referred was the cease-fire ending hostilities between the two countries following the October 1973 war.
She declined to elaborate on what means Syria would use, saying self-defense has different forms.
On the United States, she said relations were worse than they had been for years.
"When the United States says that Israel is defending itself when it attacks an abandoned civilian target under untrue pretexts and threatens to use its (UN) veto against condemnation ... this will have negative results on relations," she said.
Responding to Saturday’s statement, a source in the office of Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said Syria must take "full responsibility" if it continues to support "terror organizations."

"We are not interested in an escalation, but if Syria fails to take the necessary steps to stop attacks against us from its territory, it will bear the full responsibility," said the source on condition of anonymity.
Meanwhile, Israel’s spy agency Mossad has drawn up preemptive attack plans on six sites in Iran it suspects are being used to prepare nuclear weapons, Der Spiegel magazine says in its Monday edition, citing Israeli security officials.
A special Mossad unit received orders two months ago to prepare plans for attacks on half-a-dozen targets, the magazine said.
Complete destruction of the targets by F-16 fighter bombers was deemed achievable by Mossad, it said.

Israel, which is accused by Arab neighbors of possessing nuclear weapons of its own, has come to regard Iran as its chief military threat since the downfall of Saddam Hussein’s regime in Iraq.
The Los Angeles Times reported Saturday that Israel has modified US-made cruise missiles to carry nuclear warheads on submarines, giving it the ability to launch atomic weapons from land, air or sea, Israel’s newly acquired submarine capability will complicate efforts to persuade Iran to abandon a suspected nuclear weapons program.
The missile modification was described to Times reporters by two US officials and confirmed by an Israeli official, the Times said. All three spoke on condition of anonymity.

"The Americans said they were disclosing the information to caution Israel’s enemies at a time of heightened tensions in the region and concern over Iran’s alleged ambitions," the Times said.
In the Malaysian city of Putrajaya, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said Saturday that Israel plans to invade Syria and drag the United States into the war.
"Israel has been urging America to invade Syria, but America seems to be reluctant. So, in order to force the hands of America, Israel is going to invade Syria," Mahathir was quoted as saying by the official Bernama news agency.
"When that happens, the Americans will have to support Israel due to domestic political reasons that make Jewish votes a major factor in its presidential election," he said.

Mahathir had been asked to comment on Israel’s strike a week ago on what the Jewish state described as a Palestinian training camp near Damascus, a claim denied by Syria.
The veteran Malaysian leader, who will take over the chairmanship of the 57-member Organization of the Islamic Conference at a summit here this week, was also asked what could be done apart from condemning the attack.
"We can go to war but we have no capacity to go to war. That’s the problem, because we allow ourselves to become weak, people bully us."
Mahathir, who has led this moderate Islamic country for the past 22 years, is renowned for his controversial off-the-cuff comments on global affairs.
36 posted on 10/11/2003 11:59:21 PM PDT by F14 Pilot
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To: Pan_Yans Wife; DoctorZIn
Is this a good thing for Iran , or rather Middle East relations?

It would obviously be dangerous for a totalitarian regime to have "omnipotence"; but, can/would the Iranian people survive/abide by a foreign incursion such as a military strike on a "power production" facility? Especially by Israel?

Is the popular rebellion in a position to alter this apparent direction of history?
37 posted on 10/12/2003 12:18:59 AM PDT by Optimist (I think I'm beginning to see a pattern here.)
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To: DoctorZIn
This thread is now closed.

Join Us At Today's Iranian Alert Thread

Live Thread Ping List | DoctorZin

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

38 posted on 10/12/2003 12:22:53 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
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To: DoctorZIn; rmlew; DeaconBenjamin; Joseph_Erulkar; Libertarianize the GOP; h.a. cherev; ...
Iranian reformist Shirin Ebadi bump!
39 posted on 10/12/2003 12:25:57 AM PDT by risk
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