Monday, March 13, 2006

Tuesday's Daily Briefing on Iran

DoctorZin reports, 3.14.2006:

UN Security Council deadlocked on Iran?
  • Yahoo News reported that the five veto-wielding members of the U.N. Security Council are deadlocked over the best way to pressure Iran. China's Ambassador Wang Guangya told The Associated Press as he left the meeting. "I think they want to be too tough."
Iran speeds towards a confrontation with the UN.
  • The New York Times reported that Iran has decided to shift course and confront the United Nations head-on. Ahmadinejad portrayed that position not as obstinate or rigid but as a reflection of strength. "We know well that a country's backing down one iota on its undeniable rights is the same as losing everything."
Russia: Iran is the problem.
  • Reuters reported that Russia's foreign minister said regarding a compromise solution to its nuclear dispute: "Iran is absolutely no help to those who want to find peaceful ways to solve this problem."
Iran to build its own nuclear power plants.
  • Jerusalem Post reported that Iran said Monday it would begin construction on its first indigenous nuclear power plant within six months.
Iran seeks uranium from Venezuela?
  • The Washington Times reported that a recent deal between Iran and Venezuela provides for the exploitation of Venezuela's strategic minerals signals that Chavez's government could be planning to provide Tehran with uranium for its nuclear program.
Does Jack Straw finally get it?
  • The International Institute for Strategic Studies published the full text of UK Foreign Minister Jack Straws remarks on Iran. He asked: "How then can we help the Iranian people realise their ambition for Iran to retake its place as a respected and law-abiding country within the region and within the community of nations?" Videos of the speech and QA.
  • Interactive Investor reported that UK Foreign Secretary Jack Straw said Iran's actions over its nuclear program are beginning to cause "serious damage" to investor confidence there.
Still more protests in Iran.
  • Iran Focus reported that some 150 textile workers gathered on Monday outside the offices of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to protest. “Instead of justice-spreading government”, the workers said, Ahmadinejad’s government should be called the “sacking government”.
Ahmadinejad's $6 Billion dollar personal fund.
  • National Union For Democracy In Iran reported that President AhmadiNejad’s budget proposal to the Iranian parliament has widened the rift between the office of the president and the parliament. But the parliament has finally approved a $6 Billion for the office of the President which is separate from the national budget.
Iranian regime uses Hollywood to battle Iranian opposition TV broadcasters.
  • Monsters & Critics reported that the Iranian regime admits that it has resorted to broadcasting popular American films to compete with Iranian opposition broadcasters out of LA.
Iranian media ban on news about Iran’s referral to the UN Security Council.
  • Rooz Online reported that the secretariat of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council (SPSC) issued a confidential directive to the state-run radio and television network instructing its directors not to mention or discuss the fact that Iran’s nuclear file has been referred to the UN Security Council.
Here are a few other news items you may have missed.
  • The New York Times reported that Lebanon's leaders met here recently for what was billed as the start of a national dialogue to discuss disarming militias like Hezbollah, but government officials conceded that Lebanon's ability to resolve some of its most vexing domestic conflicts would depend on decisions made in Tehran and Washington.
  • BBC News reported that the United States is developing the concept of a "cold war" with Iran. The idea is that regime or policy change could be effected by the Iranian people themselves.
  • Islamic Republic News Agency reported that the Iranian Foreign Ministry on Monday lodged a protest against anti-Iran statements by US President George W Bush.
  • And finally, Rooz Online reported that Iraq's Moqtada Sadr and Seyed Hassan Nassrollah, the leader of Lebanon’s Hezbullah group made unreported visits to Tehran last week.