Thursday, May 04, 2006

Friday's Daily Briefing on Iran

DoctorZin reports, 5.5.2006:

Friday is Russia's moment of truth on Iran.
  • The Los Angeles Times reported that as the U.N. Security Council meets this week to discuss how best to stop Iran's march toward nuclear weapons capability, Russia has the potential to serve as a bridge between the West and the Islamic Republic. This is "a moment of truth for Russia."
  • The Financial Times reported that Russia’s stance on Iran’s nuclear program took centre stage on Thursday, as the United States and the European Union sought to win Moscow’s support for a hard-hitting United Nations Security Council. The Russian government fears the US has a hidden agenda: the goal of regime change.
White House again says no to US/Iran talks.
  • Kenneth R. Timmerman, argued that Senator Lugar is falling for one of the oldest tricks in the Ayatollah’s book by calling for direct talks with Iran.
  • reported that the White House again rejected the idea of one-on-one talks with Iran saying: "This is not a bilateral issue between the regime and the United States, this is an issue between the regime and the international community."
The Islamic Republic of Iran "gently" promotes fear inside of Iran.
  • Iran Focus reported that dozens of Iranian Sufi's and their lawyers have been sentenced to jail and flogging.
  • The Scotsman reported that a prominent Iranian philosopher, Ramin Jahanbegloo, has been arrested on suspicion of espionage. Ramin also holds Canadian citizenship.
  • Radio Free Europe reported that human rights activists have expressed concern about the "intensifying repression" and the worsening of the situation regarding freedom of expression in Iran since the government of hard-line Ahmadinejad took office in August 2005.
Iran can now mass produce centrifuges.
  • reported that Iran now has the know-how to mass-produce centrifuges used to enrich uranium. Enrichment is seen as a "breakout capacity" which, once mastered, makes manufacturing nuclear weapons possible.
Iran preparing for a "battle with the enemy ... America"
  • MEMRI published videos and translations of an interview with Iranian Army Chief of Joint Staff General Abdorrahim Musavi who said: "We make our submarines ourselves ... that will serve us in battle with the enemy... with America. ... America's military power is greatly overestimated."
Here are a few other news items you may have missed.
  • The Wall Street Journal reported that while the U.S. and European governments are working in lock step to get a fresh United Nations Security Council resolution against Iran, what they aren't talking about publicly is where they diverge.
  • Yahoo News reported that French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin said military action against Iran over its nuclear program "is not the solution", but he added Iran required a "firm" response by the international community.
  • BBC News visited "Tehrangeles" where around half of estimated 1.65 million Iranian diaspora live in the US.
  • Victor Davis Hanson, RealClearPolitics argued that the current Western strategy on Iran is designed to give Iran enough rope to hang itself.
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