Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Wednesday's Daily Briefing on Iran

DoctorZin reports, 4.19.2006:

How did Iranian nuclear negotiator get to Washington and who is he meeting with?
  • The New York Times reported that the State Department confirmed that Mohammad Nahavandian, an aide to the top Iranian nuclear negotiator, Ali Larijani, was in Washington. But Sean McCormack, the department spokesman, said, "He's not here for meetings with U.S. government officials, to my knowledge."
  • Reuters added that State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said "We have no record of issuing a visa to a person with this name."
  • The Guardian reported that the US reaffirmed that it is refusing to discuss Iran's nuclear plans in face-to-face talks on Iraq.
No progress yet at Moscow Perm-5 plus one meeting on Iran.
  • The Guardian reported on the perm-5 plus one talks on Iran in Moscow and the as of Tuesday, Russia has maintained its opposition to sanctions against Iran.
Iran and US trade tough statements.
  • New Press reported that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad warned that Iran would "cut off the hand of any aggressor."
  • MSNBC reported that President Bush said “all options are on the tableto prevent Iran from developing atomic weapons, but said he will continue to focus on the international diplomatic option. Plus an interactive look at Iran's nuclear facilities.
Experts produce must read reports on Iran.
  • Amir Taheri, The New York Post argued that the European trio and Washington described Iran's announcement that it has now joined "the nuclear club" as "unacceptable." But warned that when you say that something is "unacceptable," you have already accepted it as a reality.
  • Center for Strategic & International Studies published a new study analyzing the different options to deal with a nuclear armed Iran.
  • Center for Strategic & International Studies also published a report on Iran's nuclear ambitions and how the situation will affect U.S.-Turkish relations.
  • Edward N. Luttwak, Commentary published three reasons not to bomb Iran, Yet. An excellent read.
Pentagon plans Iran war games.
  • USA TODAY reported that the Pentagon is planning a war game in July so officials (including Congressmen) can explore options for a crisis involving Iran.
Mesbah Yazdi seeks to head the assembly the chooses the Supreme Leader?
  • Rooz Online reported that Ayatollah Ali Meshkini, the head of Iran’s Experts Assembly on Leadership which is responsible for choosing a new leader, is in coma. Ayatollah Mesbah Yazdi is said to have ambitions to head the Assembly.
A run on Gold in Iran.
  • Rooz Online reported that fear of war in Iran has lead to a demand for gold and the Central Bank of Iran has been unable to control the demand.
Many Iranians unhappy with regime S50 million gift to Hamas.
  • Reuters reported that many Iranians are happy with the regime's gift of $50 million to the Hamas led Palestinian government. They want the regime to focus on their needs.
Here are a few other news items you may have missed.
  • The New York Times argued that the use of tactical nuclear weapons against Iran makes little sense.
  • Times of India reported that India's PM Manmohan Singh unequivocally told a delegation of Muslim leaders that Tehran's nuclear ambitions were not in India's interest.