Saturday, February 11, 2006

Week in Review

DoctorZin provides a review of this past week's [2/06/06 -2/12/06] major news events regarding Iran. (The reports are listed in chronological order, not by importance) READ MORE

Iran's Nuclear Program - The IAEA Reports Iran to the UN Security Council.
  • Yahoo News reported that Iran ended all voluntary cooperation with the IAEA but would still hold talks with Moscow. Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki added: "Yesterday we had two options. One was the option of resistance and the other was surrender. We chose resistance."
  • Mehran Riazaty reported that Ahmadinejad, in reaction to the IAEA vote on Iran, said: "The foes cannot do a damn thing. We do not need you (enemies) at all. It is you (enemies), who need the Iranian people."
  • Fox News reported that after the vote, President Bush again addressed the Iranian people directly, saying that the international community is not trying to deny Iran its right to a civil nuclear energy program, but that Iran's best interest lies in not trying to pursue nuclear weapons.
  • New York Daily News published an interview with U.S. Ambassador to the UN John Bolton on Iran. He said: "The first step would be to make it clear that we are trying to strengthen the hand of the International Atomic Energy Association."
  • The VOA News reported that Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov said the international community expects unequivocal answers from Iran about its nuclear program.
  • Dow Jones Newswires reported that Iran has now achieved the "capability to develop nuclear weapons and the means to deliver them."
  • CNN News reported that Iran said inspectors from the U.N.'s nuclear watchdog will visit in the next few days to oversee the resumption of uranium enrichment - a process that can be used to make bomb-grade material.
  • reported that Iran told the IAEA to remove surveillance cameras and agency seals from sites and nuclear equipment.
  • Forbes reported that Russia's foreign minister warned against threatening Iran over its nuclear program.
  • Reuters reported that French Foreign Minister Philippe Douste-Blazy said: the international community is not seeking a confrontation with Iran over its nuclear program.
  • The Washington Times argued that German Chancellor Angela Merkel's explicit the analogy between the current Iranian regime and the Third Reich does not match the Western democracies' current approach toward Iran.
  • The Wall Street Journal reported that while Washington has China's support on Iran's referral to the UNSC, China may still part company.
  • The Jerusalem Post reported that Israel's Ambassador to the US said that Iran is the biggest problem facing the world since World War II.
  • Mel Levine, Alex Turkeltaub and Alex Gorbansky, The Washington Post examined 3 myths about the Iran conflict.
  • RIA Novosti reported that Russia's foreign minister would guarantee the return of uranium to Iran after its enrichment.
  • The New York Post reported on Iran's secret lab, where as many as 11 projects related to weapons research are under way.
  • Reuters reported that diplomats said that Iran's order that U.N. nuclear surveillance gear be removed from key sites by mid-February may prevent U.N. inspectors from discovering whether Tehran's atomic drive has wholly peaceful aims.
  • ePolitix reported that prime minister Tony Blair said Iran would be making a "very serious mistake" by pressing ahead with its nuclear activity.
  • Reuters reported that Vice President Dick Cheney said the nuclear standoff with Iran was a dangerous situation.
  • Rebecca Hagelin, argued that the west has “one ace left to play before a final showdown looms,” we should extend NATO membership to Israel.
  • Shmuel Rosner, Slate argued that while everybody talks about the "pressure" Iran is under, the real strain is on the international community.
  • Caroline Glick, The Jerusalem Post argued that the IAEA's resolution has simply boxed the US into a policy that has no chance of succeeding.
  • Iran Press News reported that general manager of security and guardianship of Isfahan's Uranium Conversion Facility (UCF) nuclear complex discussed its nuclear enrichment program.
  • reported that the US administration wants Turkey to send a warning to Iran.
  • The Washington Post reported that Iranian engineers have completed sophisticated drawings of a deep subterranean shaft designed for an underground atomic test.
  • Yahoo News reported that the Pew Research Center conducted a poll in which he said: "two of three [Americans] saying Iran's nuclear program represents a major threat."
  • U.S. Rep. Ike Skelton, The Kansas City Star reported that we must get this right on Iran and offered some action we should take.
  • Reuters reported that U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan urged Iran on to freeze its nuclear activities so negotiations can go on.
  • The New York Times reported that the Saudi Arabian ambassador to the United States denounced Iran's uranium enrichment program and US policy.
  • Con Coughlin, The Telegraph reported that Iran's controversial Natanz uranium processing plant has successfully restarted their equipment that enable it to produce material for nuclear warheads. A major development.
  • Monsters & Critics reported that three major Russian news agencies - RIA Novosti, ITAR-TASS and Interfax - published a statement by a certain 'expert', saying: 'the situation around Iran is very bad and is going from bad to worse.' '
  • Iran Press News reported that Britain, France and Germany have begun compiling a list of the Islamic regimes hierarchy in order to impose possible sanctions and travel bans on Iranian leaders.
  • Reuters reported that U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said: "We have undertaken a series of initiatives to try to persuade them that their behaviour is harmful to a new Iraqi government and indeed harmful to the region. Thus far we've not been successful." "I think they're making a mistake."
  • Iran Press News reported that Hasan Nasrollah, the Lebanese Hezbollah leader said: "We stand behind the Islamic Republic of Iran in their nuclear pursuits... [Western] dictators want to deprive them from obtaining such technology."
  • Rooz Online reported that the Islamic Republic warned the local press not to publish any news reports or stories regarding Iran’s referral to the UN Security Council which imply that all is lost and that the Islamic Republic has suffered a defeat.
Tehran Bus Strike - Growing International Support.
  • Rooz Online reported that Iran’s domestic media have been banned from publishing news on the government crackdown of the strike of bus drivers who again took to the streets in protest.
  • LabourStart published a report and photos of trade unionists picketing the Iranian embassy in London.
  • Iran Press News reported that Hasan Mohammadi, an activist member of the Bus drivers union was arrested at midnight on Monday, after contacting international media about the strike.
  • reported that about 200 workers have thus far been released following the mass arrests on January 28th, that none of the 200 released workers have been able to return to their jobs and hundreds others are still in prison.
  • ICFTU Department of Trade Union Rights joined the global labor movement in calling for the release of more than 500 Iranian bus drivers and invited members of the Iranian-American community in Washington DC to join the AFL-CIO, the Solidarity Center and the DC Metro Labor Council in a solidarity demonstration with striking bus drivers in Iran, February 15, 2006.
  • The ITF is urging transport workers across the world to support an international day of action demanding the release of over 1000 trade unionists imprisoned in Iran. The action day, set for February 15th.
Iranian Leaders On the Offensive.
  • Mehran Riazatyreported that Ahmadinejad said that selflessness and martyrdom-seeking is the only way to save mankind, adding, "We are all obliged to keep alive the culture of martyrdom-seeking in the society."
  • Adnkronos International reported that Iran's supreme leader has given his blessing to violent demonstrations targeting Denmark's embassy in Tehran, defining them as "justified and even holy."
  • Iran Press News reported that the Supreme Leader's newspaper called for taking the IAEA inspectors hostage and prosecuting them for espionage.
  • Iran Press News reported that Ahmadinejad's special inspector chastises Minster of Culture and Islamic Guidance over certain films that were chosen and permitted to be screened at this years Fajr Film Festival.
  • Mehran Riazaty reported that Iran's Interior Minister Security Deputy, Brigadier General Zolghadr said: "Americans tried to establish a dependent regime in Iraq and increase their pressure on Iran, but their policies in Iraq were failed and today, Iran's friends in Iraq seized the power."
  • Mehran Riazaty reported that Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid-Reza Asefi, said: "The statements of certain western officials show that contrary to their absurd claims, westerners are disqualified, and impetuous, lacking any cultural background."
  • Iran Focus reported that the Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps have said: “Merkel in her childish dreams imagines herself as Hitler and ... she can give orders to the world and free countries.”
  • The Jerusalem Post reported that an Iranian vice president said he did not believe that the United States will attack his country over its nuclear program, and compared US defense secretary Rumfeld's strong warnings to "Dracula showing his teeth."
  • Rooz Online interviewed an Iranian Majlis Deputy who complained that now we are at the UN Security Council: "It is now clear that the Eastern policy, i.e. relying on the East, was completely wrong... you cannot create a block with weak states."
  • Iran Press News reported that the E.U. in a formal statement called for the Islamic regime to sever all ties to various Palestinian and Lebanese terror groups; the Islamic regime however, immediately rejected the appeal.
  • WorldNetDaily reported that Ahmadinejad said Palestinians and "other nations" will remove Israel from the region.
  • BBC News reported that Iran could abandon the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) if forced to limit nuclear activities.
  • Mehran Riazaty reported that Khatami called the Prime Minister of Denmark is "Stupid."
Ahmadinejad's Worldview.
  • Slater Bakhtavar, Tocqevillian argued that a new anti-Christ has emerged from the land of Ancient Persia who may gain the means to commit mass genocide if the West continues to ignore the demands of the Iranian people for a free democratic society.
Rumors of War.
  • MosNews reported that the Azeri president said: Azerbaijan will not allow the U.S. to launch military attacks on Iran from the country’s territory.
  • Bob Roberts, Mirror reported that Tony Blair yesterday refused to rule out a British military invasion of Iran, saying: "You can never say never."
  • Channel4 News reported that Jack Straw has played down suggestions that military action against Iran is unavoidable.
  • The Wall Street Journal argued that despite many commentators arguing that a pre-emptive air attack against Iran's nuclear installations is unfeasible, the chance of success are in fact rather good.
  • Reuters reported that in a private meeting with European diplomats this week, a former senior U.S. official raised the idea of launching a dozen B2 bombers in an air raid aimed at crippling key Iranian nuclear facilities.
  • Edward N. Luttwak, Los Angeles Times asked: Would Iranians Rally 'Round the Flag?
  • Reuters reported that while Israel has long pursued a policy of preemptive attack as its preferred form of defense. But when it comes to tackling arch-foe Iran, that option may have been put on hold under a protective "umbrella" on offer from the United States.
  • Philip Sherwell, The Telegraph reported that strategists at the Pentagon are drawing up plans for devastating bombing raids backed by submarine-launched ballistic missile attacks against Iran's nuclear sites as a "last resort" to block Teheran's efforts to develop an atomic bomb.
More Calls for an Internal Regime Change in Iran.
  • Amir Taheri, The Jerusalem Post argues that when arguing for international support for regime change in Iran, we should focus on Iran's leaders stated plans to create a clash of civilizations culminating in a pan-Shi'ite caliphate.
  • ABC News reported that American and British diplomats held talks this week on ways to promote democracy in Iran. FINALLY!!!
  • published Reza Pahlavi's communique regarding Iran's nuclear crisis, in which he warns of the danger the Iranian leaders have put the country and called for unity and a new government in Iran.
  • Iran va Jahan published excerpts of an interview conducted by to Kayhan (London) with Sean McCormack, US Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs discussing why the Iranian people need US assistance to replace their government with one that supports the principles of freedom and true democracy.
  • 600 Student Activists, published a letter from Iranian Students to the freedom-loving people of the world. A must read.
  • Jordan Times reported that Washington is quietly backing Iran's pro-democracy forces.
  • NewsMax reported that Newt Gingrich says the United States must do everything in its power to bring about regime change in Iran.
  • Rooz Online is reporting that despite Ahmadinejad's promises to help the poor, unexpected price hikes are devastating Iranian families.
The Cartoon Unrest.
  • The Dawn reported that Iran recalled its ambassador to Denmark over the publication of cartoons depicting Islam's Prophet Mohammad. Iran's culture ministry warned it may ban reporters from publications that have printed the cartoon.
  • HeraldSun reported that Iran has cut all trade ties with Denmark because of the publication of satirical cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad.
  • reported that a crowd of about 400 demonstrators threw petrol bombs and large rocks at the Danish embassy in Tehran.
  • SMCCDI reported that despite a massive effort by the Iranian regime it could only muster 400 Bassji to protest the cartoons of Mohammed, in a city of 12 million.
  • reported that Iran's largest selling newspaper announced today it was holding a contest on cartoons of the Holocaust in response to the publishing in European papers of caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed.
  • SMCCDI reported that 300 Bassij threw Molotov cocktails and pieces of rocks at the Danish embassy in Tehran for the second consecutive day but these organized rallies are designed to shift the focus of the world's attention away from the struggle of Iranians who are seeking freedom.
  • Radio Free Europe reported that the United States has condemned an Iranian newspaper's plan to hold a contest for cartoons about the Holocaust.
  • Reuters reported that Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said: "Iran and Syria have gone out of their way to inflame sentiments and to use this to their own purposes and the world ought to call them on it."
  • Reuters reported that an Iranian newspaper's call for Holocaust cartoons is an attempt to drag Israel into a conflict between Europe and the Muslim world.
  • Amir Taheri, The Wall Street Journal exposed many of the myths repeated by the media to explain the Islamic reaction to the cartoons of Mohammed. A must read.
  • Amir Taheri, The New York Post exposed the ABC's of the Rent-A-Riot in the Middle East.
  • The Washington Post reported that Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen Thursday said the governments of Iran and Syria had intentionally inflamed Muslim protests against a Danish newspaper's publication of cartoons depicting the prophet Muhammad to distract attention from their own diplomatic crises.
  • Eli Lake, The New York Sun reported that Secretary of State Rice said: "I don't have any doubt that given the control of the Syrian government in Syria, given the control of the Iranian government... to use this to their own purposes."
  • Bernard-Henri Levy, The Wall Street Journal examined the unrest created by the cartoons of Mohammed and probed the question: What made this demented scene, this planetary upheaval, possible?
  • Iranian Student News Agency published photos of Iranian Security Forces "battling" what is supposed to be an "angry mob" attacking the UK Embassy in Tehran.
  • Reuters witnesses said a crowd of about 70 protesters gathered in front of the French embassy, then a crowd of about 200 people hurled stones at the Danish embassy and finally, the same crowd then moved to the nearby British diplomatic compound.
  • OhMyNews reported that the leader of Hezbollah said U.S. President George W. Bush and his secretary of state should "shut up" after they accused Syria and Iran of fueling protests over cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad.
Iranian Oil a Weapon?
  • reported that oil could shoot to more than $130 a barrel, if Iranian oil stops flowing.
Iran's Dissidents.
  • Rooz Online reported that Akbar Ganji's imprisoned attorney, Soltani, is still in legal limbo since his court dossier is reportedly "lost".... adding that Ganji is supposed to be released from prison in 40 days.
  • Rooz Online reported on new accusations being leveled against Web-bloggers in Iran.
The Unrest inside of Iran.
  • SMCCDI reported some sporadic but violent clashes in the North Tehran, started bt zealous militiamen who were angered, by the lack of attention of tens of young Iranians for the Shia ritual of Moharam.
  • Iran Press News reported on the protests and clashes between people and Islamic regimes forces in Mahabad (Province of Kurdistan).
Human Rights/Religious and Press Freedom inside of Iran.
  • A compilationof Iranians executed or sentenced to death from December 05 through January 06.
  • World Tribune reported that Iran has forced the United Arab Emirates of Dubai to halt live Persian-language television broadcasts. But Sen. Santorum has introduced the Iran Freedom and Support Act, which would increase support for a free media in Iran. Write or call your Senator now.
  • SMCCDI reported that three more Iranians were executed, yesterday, in Sabzevar, the scene of several riots.
  • published an interview with Joseph Akrami, an independent filmmaker who is the director of A Few Simple Shots, a film documenting the Iranian regime's human rights atrocities.
Iran's Military.
  • Middle East Newsline reported that Iran has quietly acquired three Su-25UBT twin-seat attack fighter-jets from Russia.
  • reported that Iran secretly tested a new surface-to-surface missile (SSM) on January 17, seeking to establish the measurements needed for long-range missiles.
  • Iran Focus reported that Iran will buy several 30 Russian-made Tor M-1 surface-to-air missiles from Russia as part of its arsenal to protect its nuclear sites.
Iran and the International community.
  • The New York Times reported that Iran is hoping to unite Arab Muslims, but finding it is a difficult sell.
  • NetForCuba reported that Cuba honors its friendship with Iran's mullahs.
  • Pravda reported that senior diplomats from Israel and Afghanistan met secretly in London last week.
  • Haaretz reported that Hamas is expected to grow much closer to Iran which will center on financing, operational know-how and political support.
  • Telegraph reported that Iraqi insurgent groups are turning against their former al-Qa'eda allies, and that Zarqawi has fled to Iran.
  • Iran Press News reported that two weeks ago the regime had begun exporting gas to Georgia, for only one week.
  • The Financial Times reported that Iranians seeking visas for Germany ahead of this summer's football World Cup could face heightened background checks and some might be barred.
Can you believe this?
  • Iran Press News reported that the Iranian Regime expressed anxiety over the continued arrests and incarceration of its minions in Iraq.
  • John Rosenthal, TCS Daily reported that when Chirac gave his much-trumpeted speech on French nuclear deterrence, his warning was not just to Iran, but also a "warning a signal to the US."
  • The NY Times, in an editorial, is now on record that it supports the Bush administrations assessment that Iran is pursuing nuclear power, but hope for enough time for the world to put greater pressure on the regime to change.
  • The Economist argued that Ahmadinejad is growing in popularity inside of Iran.
Insight into the Iranian People.
  • The New York Times reported that in Iranian eyes, the 'Cross-Eyed British' are to blame for its historic problems with the international community.
  • SMCCDI reported that the vast majority of Iranians chose not to attend the Islamic regime's 27th anniversery of the revolution.
Must Read reports.
  • The Washington Post said the good news in the vote by the IAEA is that the United States and its allies have managed to broaden the international coalition. But the coalition-building nevertheless has had a clear cost: The action taken is slow and weak.
  • Eli Lake, The New York Sun reported that the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence is studying 12 hours of audio recordings between Saddam Hussein and his top advisers that may provide clues to the whereabouts of Iraq's weapons of mass destruction.
  • Per Ahlmark, The Wall Street Journal nominated Ken Timmerman and John Bolton for the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize.
  • Yahoo News reported that the Pew Research Center conducted a poll in which he said: "two of three [Americans] saying Iran's nuclear program represents a major threat."
  • Eli Lake, The New York Sun reported that a former special investigator for the Pentagon during the Iraq war said he found four sealed underground bunkers in southern Iraq that he is sure contain stocks of chemical and biological weapons.
  • 600 Student Activists, published a letter from Iranian Students to the freedom-loving people of the world. A must read.
The Experts.
  • Amir Taheri, The Jerusalem Post argues that when arguing for international support for regime change in Iran, we should focus on Iran's leaders stated plans to create a clash of civilizations culminating in a pan-Shi'ite caliphate.
  • Amir Taheri, The New York Post exposed the ABC's of the Rent-A-Riot in the Middle East.
  • Kenneth R. Timmerman, reviewed yesterday's Washington Post article and argues once again someone is leaking critical US intelligence for political gain.
  • Amir Taheri, Asharq Alawsat warned us to watch the forthcoming election of a new Assembly of Experts, a body of mullahs whose task is to elect the Supreme Leader. The new elite’s ideological guru, Ayatollah Muhammad-Taqi Mesbah-Yazdi could emerge as the leading candidate. The most radical of Iran's Ayatollah's.
Photos, cartoons and videos.
  • Iran Press News published graphic photos of the Iranian Regime's brutality toward three young men who were recently attacked by the regime's thugs in Zahedan.
  • Cox & Forkum published a cartoon:Undeniable.
  • A cartoon: Iran's WMD's.
  • Iranian Student News Agency published a photo of Iranians being bussed in for the Islamic regime's 27th anniversery of the revolution.
And finally, The Quote of the Week.
Yahoo News reported that Iran ended all voluntary cooperation with the IAEA but would still hold talks with Moscow. Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki added:

"Yesterday we had two options. One was the option of resistance and the other was surrender. We chose resistance."