IRAN, the U.S. and the WTO

The U.S. should oppose Iran’s admittance to the World Trade Organization (WTO) on political principal. It’s the right thing to do. Although it may seem like a unique point of leverage for the International community, blocking Iran’s admittance into the WTO is not a particularly effective diplomatic tool to economically isolate the Iranian government. No entity is more suited to isolate Iranians and the Iranian government more effectively than the Iranian government itself. Blocking Tehran’s admittance into the WTO is instead an emphasis to Iranian officials about what they must do before Iran can rejoin the community of nations. If Iran were to join the WTO before ending its destabilizing policies, reforming its broken economy and complying with its contractual agreements with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), it would be putting its “cart before its donkey”.

More importantly, Iranian officials have given the West no reason to believe they would willingly join the WTO. Rolling out the red carpet or protesting Iran’s admittance suggests the Iranian regime is capable of absorbing progressive political and economic reforms without imploding. Iran's economic policies are consciously engineered to isolate Iran and Iranians from foreign influence and maintain financial authority over those that are not particularly intimidated by the ideology of the Iranian regime. WTO flavored reforms represent a serious threat to Tehran’s hegemonic leadership.


It is noteworthy that the Iranian government’s threats of a unilateral boycott of their petroleum exports are consistence ant therefore, more serious than the West’s threats to sanction Iran’s primary export and economic lifeline, petroleum. Iranian threats to take its petroleum off of the global energy market make clear that the Iranian regime can not rationalize its role among nations. Iranian officials repeatedly demonstrate that they respond to their own crisis making by instituting isolationist policies. Examples like Tehran’s threats to destabilize global energy markets illustrate Iranian governance, in its current form, is an institutionalized destabilizing feedback loop that is threatening to crash the Iranian system, Iran’s neighbors as well as institutions of global democracy.

Tehran’s destabilizing feedback loop, Iran’s current model of governance, is the single biggest indicator that the Iranian government cannot authorize its own admittance into the WTO. If Iran were to begin instituting policies in line with WTO recommendations, it will in effect, empower the Iranian people. Factions of Iranians will rise to demand liberties. The more independent of these factions would not willingly mimic the Iranian governments self defeating destabilization campaign and begin funneling their resources into the Iranian government’s opponents. That sort of challenge in policy would eventually shatter the brittle Iranian government. To illustrate the increasing fragility of the Iranian government, the imprisonment of students, professors and journalists is increasing while greater numbers of media outlets not controlled by the Iranian government are suppressed. Both CNN and BBC have both been banned in Iran, although these bans may be temporary. Expatriate broadcasts originating outside of the country are regularly jammed with sophisticated electronic warfare equipment inside Iran.


Without question, Iran contributes to the global market quantities of petroleum significant enough to cause instability if it were to spontaneously go off line. In combination, individual national strategic petroleum reserves represent an international strategic reserve but this has yet to be legislated in a way that could logically insulate energy markets from erratic petroleum exporting nations like Iran. An announcement to temporarily release reserves may cool energy prices in the short run and is an informal precedent in times of crisis however true energy security would require a well constructed treaty.

An appropriately worded treaty between energy importers has the potential to define a procedure to deal with any single nation’s attempts to trigger a global economic meltdown by withholding resources. A defined a series of decisive steps could be outlined by the treaty to be taken by the interested parties that may include a policy of regime change of the nation that threatens an abrupt withdrawal of its resources from the global market place. Another insulative international program might be to create an international strategic petroleum reserve defined within the treaty. Without one, energy importers are unduly influenced by the likes of Iran. It is within reason to believe resource rich nations have an obligation to supply resources at a pace the global economy can adjust to without crashing. If Iran wants to pull its oil off the market, fine, but in phases that the global economy can adjust to. If not, then the Iranian government is in effect threatening the quality of life of billions of people. That kind of behavior is totally unacceptable… and consequences should come from the countries impacted by such behavior.


For example, let’s consider Japan. Iran is the third-largest oil exporter to Japan, accounting for about 15.9 percent. Japan is a great example of a nation who is destroying international energy security by signing contracts to develop Iranian oil fields. Japan will in effect be feeding ours and their most destabilizing force. Here’s the scenario:
  1. Japan develops Iranian petro-fields
  2. Iran makes petro-money strengthening its hand
  3. Energy industry becomes more dependant on Iran
  4. Iran threatens annihilation of a neighbor
  5. International community reacts with outrage, threatens consequences
  6. Consequences lead to pessimistic speculations for energy supply shooting petro-costs through the roof
  7. Iran either follows through on threats or backs down after terrorizing their target and the free-world
  8. All the while oppressing Iranians who want to join, not terrorize the world
  9. Iran repeats these steps until the wealth of nations is transferred away from efficient and successful service oriented economies

Without broad energy solidarity among energy importers, energy security is a pipe dream. As we are all aware, petroleum is a fungible commodity we all have to have to maintain our quality of life. Unfortunately, the international solidarity and discipline required to manifest energy security is not easy to come by. If Japan and similar energy importing nations were offered a contractual guarantee toward energy security if they opt not to feed the beast, the world community could more easily face down Iran’s threats to destabilize the global economy. As the international community braces itself for energy market instability, a senior official of Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry explained the dilemma.

"We want to develop the [Iranian oil] field at any cost," the official said. "But opposing nuclear weapons proliferation is the national policy of Japan as the world's only country to suffer atomic bombings.
No matter what consequences result from Tehran’s destabilization tactics, multilateral trade sanctions or an Iranian oil-embargo, energy market instability will hit Japan and similar energy importers hard. Japanese officials are fully aware that their energy insecurity is the responsibility is the Iranian government’s conscious effort to destabilize the region.

The evidence is overwhelming that Iran, in its current form, would make an awkward and uncomfortable partner at the WTO. Until the Iranian regime changes significantly enough to join the community of nations the United States and its allies should block Iran’s admittance to the WTO. Iran knows exactly what the community of nations is asking it to do. The ball is in Iran’s court and has been for decades. Inaction from the international community has become dangerous and the time has come to take decisive action before Iranian officials instigate an international crisis that succeeds in scuttling the global economy.



Free Republic Commentary 1/26-2/13

Freep a poll on the Danish cartoons
Posted by humint to djsunzi
On News/Activism 02/02/2006 9:56:30 PM PST · 5 of 45

Do you believe Western press has the right to publish the controversial cartoons on Prophet Mohammad? Yes, it's freedom of the press. No, religious sensitivities should be respected.

YES, it’s freedom of the press, and I respect Muslim’s religious sensitivities as well. There is no legal mandate that forces Muslims buy or read newspapers that publish satirical cartoons they find offensive. They can exercise their freedom of choice and make this the non issue it really is...

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The Pen And The Sword (Ollie North)
Posted by humint to smoothsailing
On News/Activism 02/02/2006 9:36:15 PM PST · 3 of 25

All seemingly heeded another of Edward Bulwer-Lytton's pithy comments: "One of the sublimest things in the world is plain truth." And unlike Amanpour, they all reported facts -- not opinions.

"When people have no other tyrant, their own public opinion becomes one." --- Edward Bulwer-Lytton 1803 - 1873

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Dispatch From Tehran (Iranians Love Their Wacky President)
Posted by humint to Lorianne; bnelson44
On News/Activism 02/02/2006 9:23:58 PM PST · 8 of 8

ARTICLE: The regime has been extraordinarily effective in galvanizing support from Iranians across the political spectrum on the nuclear issue. Nuclear energy has become intimately linked to the national character, heralded as an inalienable right. Newspaper editors have been warned against deviating from the official line in their treatment of things nuclear, while melodramatic TV programs promote the merits of nuclear energy and, by extension, independence, on a daily basis.

IRAN'S CONSTITUTION Article 175: The freedom of expression and dissemination of thoughts in the Radio and Television of the Islamic Republic of Iran must be guaranteed in keeping with the Islamic' criteria and the best interests of the country. The appointment and dismissal of the head of the Radio and Television of the Islamic Republic of Iran rests with the Leader. A council consisting of two representatives each of the President, the head of the judiciary branch and the Islamic Consultative Assembly shall supervise the functioning of this organization. The policies and the manner of managing the organization and its supervision will be determined by law.

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Pakistan on the spot over Iran nuclear secrets
Posted by humint to Godwinson
On News/Activism 02/02/2006 1:42:20 PM PST · 8 of 9

Let me expand on my earlier post…

1. Faith is a function of belief. --- 2. Belief is a function of knowledge. --- 3. Knowledge is a function of experience.

By sharing my faith with you, I’m implicitly offering my knowledge and experience as well. Please, by all means, challenge my faith. The free exchange of ideas has made the United States strong and made American citizens the engine of America’s future. For here, bold people with unyielding faith define the future. When a person realizes the power of faith in life, they invariably engage in life. Men and women who express their faith in afterlife, through suicide, have missed God’s point! We were gifted with life on earth, to live as free men and women. This is not an American concept. It is the most important concept God gave to mankind. If there ever was a moment in the history of the world to be bold, now is that time.

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Pakistan on the spot over Iran nuclear secrets
Posted by humint to Godwinson; CarrotAndStick; OB1kNOb
On News/Activism 02/02/2006 11:49:07 AM PST · 6 of 9

So apparently they are trying to put Pakistan in a serious quagmire by giving it the option to either bear constant air strikes in Pakistani territory or hand over Dr Khan," Gul maintained.

The analysis of balance... you may have one, or the other, but not both! The problem with this analysis is that nuclear proliferation and terrorism are two fronts the United States will not surrender, under any circumstances. Trading one for the other is not pragmatic, it’s absurd. Both fronts will be fought and won. This is a war for the future that the free world will not lose.

It is simultaneously pathetic and pragmatic that the U.S. is shouldering the blame for championing these two causes. Blame and credit are two sides of the same coin. Yes, it is the Americans who are weaving a safer world for all of its inhabitants out of the ashes of dictatorship, corruption and violence. What is pathetic is that some Americans, in their humility, are quick to apologize for their clarity of mission and their unwillingness to surrender one righteous cause for another.

Let me state for the record: Americans have more faith and greater strength of will than even the most fanatical of Americas enemies. The commitment of a suicide bomber is less than citizens of the United States because we are willing to live for our cause, and live with the consequences of our countrymen’s decisions. Americans will improve in life while our enemies rush to die. Dieing is easy! Life is hard.

It is destiny that Gul be wrong, therefore he is wrong. This is my American faith in the American cause! We will fight terrorism, we will fight nuclear proliferation and our friends and enemies will be revealed. I for one, will not apologize.

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Iran row hits Belgian spy chief
Posted by humint to AKSurprise
On News/Activism 02/01/2006 9:55:55 PM PST · 6 of 13

The head of Belgium's state security service has resigned amid allegations that his department failed to disclose nuclear technology transfers to Iran.

I'm not convinced vast numbers of individuals in positions of authority need to resign for their willful blindness regarding the Iran crisis. Opening their eyes seems easier than resigning.

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Iranian Exile Calls for Change
Posted by humint to FARS
On News/Activism 02/01/2006 8:59:35 PM PST · 5 of 5

The NCRI/MEK is an enigma… predicting them is like trying to solve two or more puzzles mixed into the same box. Your predictions are as plausible as anything I can imagine. From a political and intelligence perspective, the nuclear revelations have brought Tehran’s a-bomb making to the fore and that played well for all Iranian democracy advocates. The end goal is for Iran to move away from terror and tyranny toward peace and democracy with as many Iranians and other inhabitants of the world still around to appreciate Iran after the transition. The NCRI revealing Tehran’s WMD programs was a step in the right direction. How much of the puzzle do those revelations solve? Hmmmm… who knows?

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Rally Against Islamofascism in LOS ANGELES TODAY! FReepers needed!
Posted by humint to FARS
On News/Activism 02/01/2006 8:27:40 PM PST · 11 of 13

1. Please let us know sooner about demonstrations. I have a dozen people who would have liked to attend if given advance notice.

A nationwide CONUS rally for democracy in Iran is truly unprecedented. I commend the organizers as heroes for democracy no matter what the outcome. Bravo United American Committee!

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U.S. State of The Union - Iran Excerpt
Posted by humint to wingsof liberty
On News/Activism 02/01/2006 7:26:33 PM PST · 8 of 10

Its time to step up

The United States Military can and probably will apply incredible force on this regime if it continues to side against liberty. That's the key here. If the regime in Iran were to surrender its despotism, free its political prisoners, end its support of terrorism and stop threatening the community of nations with clandestine nuclear weapons programs and oil embargoes the free world would most likely back off.

I know.... unlikely it may be, but it could happen.

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Rally Against Islamofascism in LOS ANGELES TODAY! FReepers needed!
Posted by humint to CBart95
On News/Activism 02/01/2006 7:00:15 PM PST · 8 of 13

It's a matter of common sense, not constitutional rights my starry eyed idealist.

"And as a man, who is attached to a prostitute, is unfitted to choose or judge of a wife, so any prepossession in favour of a rotten constitution of government will disable us from discerning a good one." --- Thomas Paine, Common Sense 1776.

If this is going to be as dangerous as you surmise, I wouldn't miss it for the world. Reward without risk is meaningless.

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U.S. State of The Union - Iran Excerpt
Posted by humint to phoenix0468
On News/Activism 02/01/2006 5:11:15 PM PST · 5 of 10

If a revolution ever erupts in Iran, we must be prepared to fully support it.

Well said! I agree completely...

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U.S. State of The Union - Iran Excerpt
Posted by humint
On News/Activism 02/01/2006 4:51:17 PM PST · 9 replies · 298+ views

White House ^ | 31 Jan 2006 | POTUS
...liberty is the future of every nation in the Middle East because liberty is the right and hope of all humanity. [Applause] The same is true of Iran. A nation held hostage by a small clerical elite who is isolating and oppressing its people. The regime in that country sponsors terrorists in the Palestinian Territories and in Lebanon and that must come to an end. [Applause] The Iranian government is defying the world with its nuclear ambitions and the nations of the World must not permit the Iranian regime to gain nuclear weapons. [Applause] America will continue to rally the...

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Bush should face people's tribunal: Iranian President
Posted by humint to knighthawk
On News/Activism 02/01/2006 2:29:35 PM PST · 14 of 34





This is the first submission in a series of works to compile suggestions that seek to solve each of the international crises the Iranian government has created. Because of these crises, the United States is in an official state of EMERGENCY with regard to Iran. Iranian regime behavioral changes toward degrading regional stability are the trigger to produce these works. Suggestions to simply mitigate the crisis are not sufficient to end Tehran’s sponsorship of international terror, nuclear weapons program and domestic human rights abuses and will therefore not become topics of our discourse. When the United States is suffering in a state of emergency, nothing short of a full cessation of the cause of the emergency should be considered acceptable.


SOURCE: Iran’s hard-line president Mahmood Ahamdinejad said Saturday [27 November] the Bush administration should be tried on war crimes charges, and he denounced the West for pressuring Iran to curb its controversial nuclear program.

Iran is a habitual violator of human rights and this latest statement from Iran’s President is an affront to American and our coalition partner’s efforts to facilitate security and pluralistic democracy in Iraq. Interestingly the timing of Iranian President Mahmood Ahmadinejad’s speech is no accident. This latest Iranian maneuver is a new effort to blur a recent and legitimate call for Iranian officials to go before special tribunals for their crimes against humanity. This is the latest attempt to shift the Iranian people’s focus from the failures of their own leaders onto the President of the United States and is also indicative of Tehran’s long standing propaganda effort to disparage and criminalize its enemies with baseless accusations. The call for tribunals for Iranian officials was most recently proposed by Newt Gingritch.

Announce Formation of Special Tribunals for Members of the [IRGC] and the Basij: Active public discussion and planning for the trials of the worst of Iran’s human rights violators or its leaders might restrain some or compel a few to provide evidence of what goes on in the political prisons across the country. Could we not start a program here in the U.S. to collect evidence of human rights violations among the Iranian expatriates? Could we facilitate legal activities against the violators by making it easier to sue the current Iranian regime just as we have done with terrorism cases?

Hard evidence of human rights abuse exists to indict a significant number of Iran’s sitting leadership. The 1988 massacre of political prisoners took the lives of tens of thousands of Iranians. The locations of mass-graves that hold the bodies are currently in the hands of organizations like Amnesty International. Proof of torture could be found to corroborate witness accounts by exhuming and examining the remains of political dissidents in these mass graves. American-Iranians who survived the massacre are readily available to international investigators to testify, in morbid detail, against the responsible individuals. But like everything else, these calls for justice in Iran have a shelf life. Within the last month Iranian officials announced their plan to erase evidence of at least one grave under the cover story of commercially developing the location. Mr. Gingritch’s call for tribunals became available to the public among other policy suggestions all of which support regime change in Iran as the ultimate goal:

SOURCE: The following are a set of additional thoughts on how to bring about regime change in Iran:

  1. Victory in Iraq. We have no other choice but to see our efforts in Iraq through to victory.
  2. Recognize the Weakness of the Iranian Regime and Let it Be Known Far and Wide.
  3. Have Confidence in the Power of American Values and the Words of the American President to Change History.
  4. Support Iranian Democracy Movements.
  5. We Must Think Creatively on How To Make It Easier for Russia and China to Opt Out of their Support for the Iranian Government.
  6. Avoid Broad Economic Sanctions, Especially Avoid Oil Sanctions.
  7. Announce Formation of Special Tribunals for Members of the [IRGC] and the Basij.
  8. Develop and frequently revisit a ballistic missile and EMP Intelligence Military Plan for Iran.
  9. Develop Contingency Plans In Case Iranian Government Collapses or Civil War Breaks Out.

Mr. Ginritch is not alone in his thinking. Michael Ledeen, an ardent advocate for regime in Iran for many years recently argued that the American people must Engage! so that we may achieve our goals in Iraq and elsewhere. It makes sense that American Iranians who have suffered under the ruling dictatorship in Tehran come forward and engage in the debate he is referring to. Upon close inspection, Dr. Ledeen’s article reveals the following suggestions.

  1. Expect strategic vision and leadership from the President of the United States
  2. Talk about using all our political, moral, and military genius to support a vast democratic revolution to liberate the peoples of the Middle East from their tyrannical rulers.
  3. Take the fight to those foreign countries where the terrorists are trained
  4. Give political and economic support to the Iranian people in their efforts to topple the mullahcracy
  5. Establish a strike fund for workers to walk off the job and stay at home
  6. Provide opposition groups with good communications tools, from cell and satellite phones to laptops and servers

The Iranian regime has escalated its propaganda war against the United States by maligning America’s war record and the Presidency of the United States. This behavior is fully consistent with maintaining an American “state of emergency” with respect to Iran. A plausible explanation for the timing of this escalation is that recent policy suggestions in Washington have played an important role in increasing pressure on the Iranian regime. The Iranian regime’s response to this increased pressure is only slightly more destabilizing than its behavior while not subjected to international pressure. Regardless, Tehran’s drive for regional domination must be aggressively checked or the United States and its allies will be able to fulfill the most basic acts in the Middle East. It is reasonable to assume that Iranian officials are revealing a significant weakness by escalating their propaganda efforts in this way and at this time. While the United States and its allies continue to push for a fully verifiable cessation of Iran’s nuclear weapons program the U.S. should take advantage of the weakness exposed by the Iranian regime and begin compiling evidence to indict Iranian officials in an international forum. Doing so may play an important role in increasing pressure to precipitate a positive behavioral change in the Iranian regime. Under the current international relations architecture, the Iranian government still believes that it has more to gain by “behaving badly” in both word and deed.


Americans should begin the process of helping all Americans become fully aware, by both mainstream and alternative media that Iranian officials in power today stand accused of crimes against humanity and there are many evidentiary leads an international tribunal could follow to indict current and former members of the IRGC and the Basij. To establish and maintain the essential knowledge base among fellow Americans is necessary because the more seriously Americans consider regime change in Iran, the more likely Tehran will modify its behavior for the positive. If Iran’s leadership chooses not to modify its behavior in this way, the American people will be prepared to facilitate the departure of the current regime in Iran. Paramount to this phase of pressuring the Iranian government to modify their behavior are American-Iranians and European-Iranians who have been subjected to the domestic suppression tactics of the Iranian regime. The Iranian regime’s campaign of oppression is so vast that there are many Iranian expatriates now living in free societies with first hand experience of torture and execution at the hands of Iranian officials. They should begin preparing themselves to provide detailed accounts of their experiences to an international tribunal so that the government of Iran.

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Rally Against Islamofascism in LOS ANGELES TODAY! FReepers needed!
Posted by humint to CBart95
On News/Activism 02/01/2006 1:04:24 PM PST · 5 of 13

If you are young, impulsive,idealistic and want to have your head bashed in, attend this kind of thing. ...Terrorism is not defeated by more terrorism.

How is it that this event could be considered terrorism? As I recall the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances is afforded to free people everywhere. OK, not everywhere. Certainly not Iran.

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Regaining energy leverage
Posted by humint to cogitator
On News/Activism 02/01/2006 12:43:02 PM PST · 56 of 77

If only the market decides, there could be a rather painful gap between the period when fossil fuel energy sources get very expensive and less-expensive alternatives become widely available. And fossil fuel energy sources are under constant threaten to become very expensive with little warning (remember Hurricane Katrina and those Islamic nuts running Iran)?

While the price of petroleum is high industry should take it upon itself to finance big R&D ideas. Conservation and localized renewable are little ideas that always get swallowed up when energy prices stabilize. If we're going to kick the petro-habit without severe withdrawal symptoms the energy industry should be looking at efficiency enhancing accessories and alternative feedstocks to refineries and power plants. Alternatively, money should be poured into rehabilitating industrial wastes into energy or industrial feedstocks. Consumption isn't the problem, developmental and disposal processes of consumables are.

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Democracy, It's NOT for Everyone!
Posted by humint to wvobiwan
On Bloggers & Personal 02/01/2006 8:14:22 AM PST · 6 of 17

I'm of the opinion that democracy needs a little help wresting the power from evil men, there is such a thing as force for good.

Well Said!

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Iran summons Danish envoy over Prophet cartoon
Posted by humint to AdmSmith
On News/Activism 01/31/2006 8:02:44 PM PST · 45 of 50

Publishing pictures of Mohammad is obviously not forbidden in Iran:

Somehow... I have the feeling you're not particularly interested in the details but, the picture you posted [not UBL] is of Imam Ali. Imam Ali is the origin of the differences between Shia and Sunni Islam. The religious breakdown in Iran is Shi'a Muslim 89%, Sunni Muslim 9%, Zoroastrian, Jewish, Christian, and Baha'i 2% and therefore it makes sense that Iran would have pictures of Imam Ali in their bazaars.

Modern Iranian Icons

Norwegian scientist Ingvild Flaskerud traveled to Iran in 1999 and purchased several iconic pictures of Mohammed sold openly on the street. Even though the Islamic regime in Iran strictly forbids creating, selling or owning such images, nothing was done to either the artist or the buyer, who was able to take them out of the country without any problems.

Imam Ali was quoted as saying in reply to some one who posed Imam Ali (as) a difficult question, Imam Ali (as) said : 'Ask in order to understand, and do not ask in order to find fault, for surely the ignorant man who wants to learn resembles a man of knowledge, and surely a man of knowledge who wants to be difficult resembles an ignorant man who wants to find fault. '

The Imamate began with Ali, who is also accepted by Sunni Muslims as the fourth of the "rightly guided caliphs" to succeed the Prophet. Shias revere Ali as the First Imam, and his descendants, beginning with his sons Hasan and Husayn (also seen as Hosein), continue the line of the Imams until the Twelfth, who is believed to have ascended into a supernatural state to return to earth on judgment day. Shias point to the close lifetime association of Muhammad with Ali. When Ali was six years old, he was invited by the Prophet to live with him, and Shias believe Ali was the first person to make the declaration of faith in Islam. Ali also slept in Muhammad's bed on the night of the hijra, or migration from Mecca to Medina, when it was feared that the house would be attacked by unbelievers and the Prophet stabbed to death. He fought in all the battles Muhammad did except one, and the Prophet chose him to be the husband of his favorite daughter, Fatima.

The Shia doctrine of the Imamate was not fully elaborated until the tenth century. Other dogmas were developed still later. A characteristic of Shia Islam is the continual exposition and reinterpretation of doctrine. The most recent example is Khomeini's expounding of the doctrine of velayat-e faqih, or the political guardianship of the community of believers by scholars trained in religious law. This has not been a traditional idea in Shia Islam and is, in fact, an innovation. The basic idea is that the clergy, by virtue of their superior knowledge of the laws of God, are the best qualified to rule the society of believers who are preparing themselves on earth to live eternally in heaven. The concept of velayat-e faqih thus provides the doctrinal basis for theocratic government, an experiment that Twelver Imam Shias had not attempted prior to the Iranian Revolution in 1979.

I'm posting this because of my affection for clarity of cultural perception. If you don’t share my appreciation, that’s absolutely fine. Have a great day :)

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Terrorists Going Nuclear (Mansoor Ijaz on Atomic Ayahtollahs)
Posted by humint to cgk; OB1kNOb; JerseyDvl
On News/Activism 01/31/2006 2:13:50 PM PST · 23 of 28

Anyone care to offer their suggestions as to who should be heeded rather than Mansoor, et. al. ? I'd be interested in finding better sources if you have them to offer. Please share.

I recommend me... seriously though, you can consider this stuff seriously, and take it for what it's worth, at the same time. No sense tossing the baby out with the bathwater, and such other relevant clichés. But you were looking for fresh ideas right… not clichés. What do you think about these?

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Terrorists Going Nuclear (Mansoor Ijaz on Atomic Ayahtollahs)
Posted by humint to DevSix; JerseyDvl
On News/Activism 01/31/2006 1:40:49 PM PST · 17 of 28

Q: Why do people bash Mansoor? A: Because he is continually wrong and most of his "impeccable" sources are completely made up -

"Yes of course the picture is doctored... but would someone go to the trouble of doctoring it if there wasn't some truth to it?" --- Steven Colbert, Interview question.

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Iran summons Danish envoy over Prophet cartoon
Posted by humint to LilyBean
On News/Activism 01/31/2006 12:12:42 PM PST · 31 of 50

Sorry if I offended you

No, not at all... I just wanted to show how Iranians legislate their religion and how those laws foster oppressive behavior around the world. I believe there should be Christian outrage when Christianity is defamed. I do not however believe behavior contrary to Christianity should be outlawed. Defaming anyone for their religion is inappropriate as are satirical cartoons about the Prophets of a person’s religion however inappropriate and illegal is the difference between freedom and oppression.

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Iran summons Danish envoy over Prophet cartoon
Posted by humint to LilyBean; monkeywrench; montag813; Acts 2:38; Travis McGee; airborne; Semper Paratus; ...
On News/Activism 01/31/2006 11:47:49 AM PST · 27 of 50

LILYBEAN: One thing I have noticed is that these fanatics at least stick up for their God.


The freedom of expression and dissemination of thoughts in the Radio and Television of the Islamic Republic of Iran must be guaranteed in keeping with the Islamic' criteria and the best interests of the country. The appointment and dismissal of the head of the Radio and Television of the Islamic Republic of Iran rests with the Leader. A council consisting of two representatives each of the President, the head of the judiciary branch and the Islamic Consultative Assembly shall supervise the functioning of this organization. The policies and the manner of managing the organization and its supervision will be determined by law.


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Iran summons Danish envoy over Prophet cartoon
Posted by humint to Tzimisce
On News/Activism 01/31/2006 9:57:20 AM PST · 15 of 50

…don't you think the Danes should ban offensive material? Isn't that the only accepting thing to do?

lol... Outrage over satirical newspaper cartoons? These cartoon withstanding, cartoons can indeed be a threat to national security. I don't recall any European country summoning the in the Iranian ambassador when their state run media outlet IRIB3 promoted suicide bombing to Iranian kids. The West has a surplus of tolerance. To maintain our open and tolerant societies here, the West should export tolerance, by force if necessary. ---Your sarcasm made me giggle… thanks,


The following are excerpts from an Iranian animated movie for children, which aired on IRIB 3 TV on October 28, 2005, at 8 a.m. Iran time.

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Iran summons Danish envoy over Prophet cartoon
Posted by humint
On News/Activism 01/31/2006 9:37:45 AM PST · 49 replies · 1,037+ views

Reuters ^ | Tue Jan 31, 2006 9:13 AM ET | Reuters
TEHRAN (Reuters) - Iran's Foreign Ministry summoned the Danish ambassador on Tuesday to protest against satirical newspaper cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad that have sparked Muslim anger, state television said on Tuesday. The drawings, that seemed to portray the Prophet as a terrorist, were published in September, but a row erupted this month after diplomatic efforts to solve the issue failed. One drawing showed Mohammad wearing a turban shaped as a bomb. "Iran's Foreign Ministry delivered a strong protest over the publication of the caricature that insulted the religious sentiments of Muslims," television reported. It added that Iran's Foreign Minister...

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Iran hands over documents that may show warhead design
Posted by humint to maquiladora
On News/Activism 01/31/2006 7:28:35 AM PST · 16 of 17

Iran has given the [IAEA] 1 1/2 pages describing how to cast fissile uranium... ...At the same time, the U.N. agency presented Iran with intelligence - provided by the United States - that suggests Tehran has been working on nuclear weapons...

lol... let me get this straight! Iran essentially tells the UN, "We're designing a bomb". The UN then provides Iran with virtually the same information from an Iranian laptop acquired by the U.S. and says, "Please explain this information". What part of Iran's admission does the UN not get? This is certainly a sitcom, but the punch line is nuclear proliferation and that’s not funny!

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Can The USA Avoid Attacking Iran? and
Posted by humint to RaceBannon; FARS
On Bloggers & Personal 01/30/2006 7:44:09 PM PST · 5 of 11

Compare $100 million in a peaceful country with normal democratic processes to $10 million "earmarked" in a totally hostile and absolutely weird and unusual country like the neo-Iran. Do we really expect any result from this tiny drop in the ocean? When facing global catastrophe?

Yes... I've been wondering why nobody wants to make waves in the middle of this perfect storm?

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India summons US envoy over Iran
Posted by humint to Gengis Khan
On News/Activism 01/30/2006 12:16:22 PM PST · 3 of 3

Mr Mulford was summoned by India's Foreign Secretary, Shyam Saran, on Thursday afternoon and told that his comments were "inappropriate and not conducive to building a strong partnership between the two democracies," a foreign ministry statement said.

Why is speculating such a bad thing to do? If you take your best guess about any given “future” and you lay that guess out for the world to see, why is that considered a threat? We were gifted with big brains that help us predict the future with acceptable margins of error. There are scenarios Indians and Americans can imagine that are not pleasant and it is those scenarios we can avoid if we work together and consider each possibility carefully. I have to admit, I’m very disappointed, not in Mulford or India but International relations in general. How are we, the citizens of the free world, supposed to build peaceful and prosperous communities if an ambassador speculating about the future sends officials scurrying about, muttering to their constituents, “We will act in our interests!… Our interests can’t possibly be their interests!…

Interests aren’t like marbles on the playground during recess! Interests are intangible concepts that often overlap. We all live under the same sky therefore our futures are inseparable. Our collective interests are the bricks and mortar of our shared future. Let’s act in all of OUR interests. The sustainability of democracy depends on it.

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Firebrand politics of Iranian leader resonate on the streets (Interesting, but consider the source)
Posted by humint to Dark Skies
On News/Activism 01/30/2006 10:51:33 AM PST · 3 of 5

ARTICLE: Abdullah Momenie, a leader within the student movement that called for a boycott of the presidential election, said: "We see the sensitivity of the world community as a positive thing. Although we think it is an unwise action of power which may take the country to destruction, this might produce an opportunity for a democratic movement."

I liked this paragraph very much. I’ll explain why after developing my analysis of Ahmadinejad’s latest maneuvers, beyond the nuclear crisis…

The West is undoubtedly engaged in a serious conflict with Iran. Who is going to win? We should try to answer this question but we are going to have to make some pretty big assumptions. From this article you posted it seems like a question that depends on audience and influence. If the West is hard on Ahmadinejad, his audience feeds on it because it makes his point. He repeats to them that the West is not interested in peace but is instead interested in subjugating the people of the ME. He then reaches for snippets of history to affirm and legitimize his point. At his core Ahmadinejad is an isolationist as is Khamenei, as was Khomeini. But the scope of his isolation is Islam and that gives his administration considerable maneuverability in the region. The more progress he makes isolating Muslims from the West, the more ideological leverage he has in the region.

Reaching out to Muslims in Mecca increased Iran’s visibility and prestige regionally but was a political move that simultaneously reduced the authority of regional governments from which those Muslims came. This is an important point. It’s as though Tehran is the new Moscow and it is slowly acquiring the muscle to bring its neighbor governments to heel by hijacking their populations. Hajj fits perfectly into Iran’s plans to become the regional hegemon. The downside of this however is a systematic breakdown of solidarity among regional governments. Case in point, OPEC recently rejected Iran’s call to cut petroleum production/deliveries.

Considering these dynamics, we should be asking ourselves, what does Tehran get for its efforts? For one, the ME stage will be set for fulfilling Khomeini’s plan to export Islamic revolution. As Muslims turn their attention to Iran, the Valeyat of Tehran, currently Khamenei, will reign over a vast Islamic empire. Tehran’s empire will not be explicitly defined by geo-political borders but will hold 55% of the world’s proven oil reserves. That’s power! With that kind of power Iran will not need to tolerate freedom of expression in the West. Trivial threats [such as FR for example] to the regime anywhere in the world could be stopped in cold blood simply by picking up the phone. A call from an Iranian agent to a trusted Muslim could carry out the deed. If not, he could provide safe haven for the Iranian agent to do it himself. As this article implies, the Hajj is ideal recruiting ground for Iran’s Ministry of Intelligence Services (MOIS).

Alternatively, what does the West get for challenging Tehran? It doesn’t sound like much… The West gets to champion civil society in the midst of globalization. Sure it’s going to be expensive but the West cannot afford to drop the ball on the core freedoms that have come to define it. The incredible success the West enjoys leads me to believe tolerance triumphs over intolerance and therefore the open societies of the West will prevail over ME isolationists. Whether we like it or not, the West has to win this struggle, no matter what the cost.

No one ever said it was going to be easy. Actually Western leaders keep telling their citizens that propagating civil society is going to be very hard indeed! How hard? Palestinians electing Hamas circumstantially suggests the West’s audience in the ME is smaller than democratizers estimate. This finally brings us back to Abdullah Momenie comment.

Abdullah is the West’s audience. Informed and interested in what the entire world has to offer, Abdullah is our ally. The West has influence with Abdullah because his statement suggests he’s tolerant of Western culture and values. But instead of calling him up to ask him to eliminate trivial threats to the West, I believe the West should provide support and protection for Abdullah to express his views. I think the West should look at the threats to Abdullah’s core freedoms and recognize that Abdullah’s enemies are the worst enemies of the West. I would even take this logic a step further and recommend special ops teams be tasked to extract Iranian political prisoners – in other words rescue political prisoners in Iran. I think tolerance-operations such as rescuing Iranian political prisoners would clarify the role of the West in the ME and play a key role in wining the greater war against ME isolationists. I think operations like this would speak directly to the West’s audience as well as Ahmadinejad’s audience. Now I’m going to try to answer the question that sparked my commentary, bring up a few more questions and answer those as well. Who is going to win? The West! --- How will they win? Tolerance Operations! --- How long is it going to take? It does not Matter!

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Daniel Pipes: Region not ripe for democracy
Posted by humint to Dark Skies
On News/Activism 01/29/2006 8:52:36 PM PST · 37 of 59

Best description I have heard so far! Very dangerous time.

Thank you. I derived it from my work with the Theory of Vibrations and Control Theory. These are two disciplines that employ mathematics to model physical systems. My analogy is conceptual rather than mathematic so you won’t need a calculator. Here’s the background… When a system is modeled with vibration theory, like a spring or pendulum, it is important to know the initial conditions of the system. Pendulums and springs are always subjected to friction or drag and will eventually achieve an equilibrium state over time [t]. A pendulum’s friction comes from its moving through the air and equilibrium is achieved when the pendulum stops moving. I use this analogy because I imagine system equilibrium to be like “peace in society”.

This may or may not make sense to you but conceptually modeling what just happened with Hamas is more like an upside down pendulum. This is a common control theory problem. There is an uncanny similarity between antagonists like Hamas and destabilizing feedback in a control system. Right or wrong, antagonists [like Hamas before it was elected to government] threaten social equilibrium. Clearly Hamas remains a terrorist organization despite transitioning from antagonists to governors within Palestinian society. If a control system’s feedback increases a system’s chaotic behavior the system will fail catastrophically. Imagine a pendulum that doesn’t calm to an equilibrium state but instead swings faster and higher until it no longer behaves like a pendulum. Increasing chaos to the point of catastrophic failure in this analogy is what we are trying to avoid, “war”.

You’re probably wondering why I’ve made my analogy so complicated. It really isn’t. Without coordinated support, upside down pendulums always fail. You know this if you’ve ever tried to balance a pencil on your finger tip. Anyway, this is the analogy that developed my description, “We’ve reached an event horizon in world history.” I’m glad you like it.

We are witnessing the birth of a new set of initial conditions before a war that could still prevent war. Despite the inherent instability and insecurity we feel now, this experience is the product of social and political genius! The free world has offered Palestinians the opportunity to accept or reject peace. This is historic because without their tacit rejection of peace it would be unethical to slaughter them in WWII fashion, in my opinion. What is being done for Palestinians today was not plausible for the Axis powers of WWII. The logic behind democratization is sound whether democracy prevents this looming war or not. Those who made the free and fair elections in Palestine possible are heroes of the highest order. It is right that democracy be pursued by us for our enemies because we know democracy has the potential to mitigate social chaos and prevent the war that looms. Just because the potential of democracy may not be realized in this case does not make democratization efforts wrong. Of course there are other factors…

If Hamas’s initial condition is that it will not recognize its neighbor and our ally Israel as a legitimate country with whom it will deal diplomatically and peacefully, then war is in Hamas’s future. It will be an historic war. It will be a war that spreads to those nations who come to defend Hamas. It will be a war that serves as a lesson to future generations. It will be a war Hamas and their electorate will lose spectacularly. After the war there will be a new set of initial conditions for the nations that lose. Those initial conditions will most likely be the conditions enjoyed by Germany and Japan after World War II. God help our enemies if that’s what they are asking for.

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Democracy's Double Standard
Posted by humint to hosepipe
On News/Activism 01/29/2006 1:19:57 PM PST · 11 of 12

WRONG.. democractically is used NOWHERE in that instrument.. America must thrive republically or become a democracy.. You know, soverign states vs. conquered provinces (like Canada)..

I'm curious. Where are you going with this? If I understand your assertion, “the U.S. Constitution defines the American government as a mafia”? I don't think so. Setting aside your opinion for a moment, any healthy electorate has freedom of the press, freedom of assembly, freedom of religion and freedom to travel. The American electorate has these things and the Iranian electorate does not. Why would a Mafia support a system in which its subjects have the freedom to peacefully organize an alternative to it? In Iran there is no political alternative to Valeyat e-Faqhee. Peaceful challenges to it lead to incarceration, torture and execution. Despite the despotism the Iranian government represents, Iran's government is still not a mafia, it is a totalitarian dictatorship.

The word democracy [with a small d – as opposed to Democrats, a political party] as it is used by Americans, implies political and social freedoms. In this context both Adams and Marx are wrong. Democracy is not the road to socialism nor is it a road to self destruction. Indeed it is used as a synonym with liberty and freedom these days. The U.S. Constitution guarantees American freedom but does not need to explicitly use the word democracy. Socialism is associated to very different concepts in America. That said, there are a number of socialistic policies American governors have set up over the years to foster the pursuit of liberty and happiness for Americans. The Rural Electrification Act was one example, Anti-Monopolization Laws and Social Security are other examples…

Despite your Anti-American opinions about the United States, it is clear that the Iranian electorate is not free therefore Iran cannot be a democracy. President Bush was absolutely right to call Iran’s electoral process a sham. This NYT author appears to know as little about the differences between what American a saying when they say democracy as you do. But between you and me, that’s ok. Between the two of us, we can figure out what we’re both talking about and why we think it's important if we try…

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Democracy's Double Standard
Posted by humint to hosepipe
On News/Activism 01/29/2006 11:52:47 AM PST · 9 of 12

U.S. CONSTITUTION, PREAMBLE: We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Although there are multiple interpretations of the U.S. Constitution, it is an amazingly consistent document. It ensures the people of the United States are afforded all of the ingredients that could help the nation thrive democratically. Indeed, God gives Americans the right to behave democratically! This is not true in Iran. Iran's constitution contradicts itself and so do the behaviors of Iranian officials. In Iran Allah is opposed to democratic behavior. There are no freedoms that would make democracy possible in Iran.

Your comment strikes me as odd. The definition of any given word is important. No Sir! Monarchy is not democracy. Theocracy is not democracy. Dictatorship is not democracy. It helps no one to obfuscate the meanings of words... That is unless you want to generate synonyms to suit a prefabricated agenda. The Iranian government regularly claims American freedoms are satanic hegemony. Freedom and tyranny are synonyms to the tyrants of Tehran. Whereas they may be able to convince a few Iranians of such nonsense, most Americans can see these obfuscations for what they are, antonyms.

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The danger of Anne Frank Syndrome
Posted by humint to Salem
On Bloggers & Personal 01/29/2006 11:16:49 AM PST · 10 of 27

What's a problem is that people seek to impose this willfully naive view on American foreign policy, hampering America's ability to protect herself against those whose value system calls for our subjugation or death.

There is an undeniable quest for ideal society that is not bound by time or culture. The most oppressed among us obsess about it. They agitate the rest of us who are relatively content with the society we have. If society never changed then it would be easy to silence these agitators but society does change. Society is extremely dynamic. The most dynamic of societies embrace agitators.

Anne was oppressed and we can and should forgive her for her fantasies. Ultimately, her fantasies were not far fetched. Peace and multiculturalism thrive under the right governance. That’s the key! Governance! Yes, this author is right, individuals in any given society are sick and certain cultural characteristics accentuate sickness. Lest we forget, depravity and violence is rampant under our value architecture too, but what is important is that intolerance and depravity are not sanctioned in the same way as it is by the Iranian government or some other Muslim nations.

Believing the world can be a better place is a very dangerous thing to believe! Challenging the status quo is a dangerous thing to do! But that’s what America was born to believe and do. There is nothing safe or popular about the role America was born to play. We can debate the pace at which progress might be made toward responsible governance around the world but there can be no safeguard from those among us who try to fashion American foreign policy to make the world a better, safer place for all of its inhabitants. The story of the conception of the United States makes clear our nation was born with that risk. Sure it may kill us… liberty or death right?

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Democracy's Double Standard
Posted by humint to Daralundy
On News/Activism 01/29/2006 10:34:14 AM PST · 6 of 12

Washington's confused strategy of democracy promotion.

This article is a full blown manifestation of cultural relativism. Iran's electoral process is not a full expression of the will of the Iranian people. Iran's constitution makes clear the Iranian moral, ideological and political compass is under the command of an unelected few. It is an injustice to consider the Iranian state a democracy. President Bush is, as are Americans, fully aware of what democracy is and therefore promote true democracy. The confusion about what democracy is exists among those who control millions through despotism and is better described as willful ignorance.

DEMOCRACY: Government by the people, exercised either directly or through elected representatives. This does not even remotely describe Iran.

IRAN’S CONSTITUTION - Article 110 - Following are the duties and powers of the Supreme Leadership:

  1. Delineation of the general policies of the Islamic Republic of Iran after consultation with the Nation's Exigency Council.
  2. Supervision over the proper execution of the general policies of the system.
  3. Issuing decrees for national referenda.
  4. Assuming supreme command of the armed forces.
  5. Declaration of war and peace, and the mobilization of the armed forces.
  6. Appointment, dismissal, and acceptance of resignation of:
    1. the fuqaha' on the Guardian Council.
    2. the supreme judicial authority of the country.
    3. the head of the radio and television network of the Islamic Republic of Iran.
    4. the chief of the joint staff.
    5. the chief commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps.
    6. the supreme commanders of the armed forces.
  7. Resolving differences between the three wings of the armed forces and regulation of their relations.
  8. Resolving the problems, which cannot be solved by conventional methods, through the Nation's Exigency Council.
  9. Signing the decree formalizing the election of the President of the Republic by the people. The suitability of candidates for the Presidency of the Republic, with respect to the qualifications specified in the Constitution, must be confirmed before elections take place by the Guardian Council;, and, in the case of the first term [of the Presidency], by the Leadership;
  10. Dismissal of the' President of the Republic, with due regard for the interests of the country, after the Supreme Court holds him guilty of the violation of his constitutional duties, or after a vote of the Islamic Consultative Assembly testifying to his incompetence on the basis of Article 89 of the Constitution.
  11. Pardoning or reducing the sentences of convicts, within the framework of Islamic criteria, on a recommendation [to that effect] from the Head of judicial power. The Leader may delegate part of his duties and powers to another person.

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We must prefer Bush, Warts and all (Ref : Iran issue. From India)
Posted by humint to Raj13008
On News/Activism 01/28/2006 7:27:29 AM PST · 23 of 57

The proposed Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline should be put on the back-burner till the Ahmedinejad regime gives way to a more reliable one. This also puts in perspective India’s diplomatic choices on Iran’s uranium enrichment plans.

YES! YES! YES! ...This is an outstanding article. Indians have far better energy security options in front of them than the Iran option, particularly with these Iranian officials at the helm. These guys have demonstrated that the contracts they sign aren't worth the paper they're written on at the IAEA. Why should Indians trust them if the rest of the world cannot?

The elementary A+B=C equation; [India needs natural gas + Iran has natural gas = DEAL!] doesn’t show how unreliable variable B is. Honestly, I can't fathom why anyone in India would want to turn to Tehran [in its current incarnation] for energy security. Great post. BTTT!

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What does Iran tell us about Iraq?
Posted by humint to qlangley
On Bloggers & Personal 01/27/2006 12:20:29 PM PST · 4 of 4

Of course, none of this solves the problems in Iran. Probably the solution, as with Syria, is to provide support to those inside the country who want to overthrow the government. If Iran and Syria can support terrorists who want to overthrow the popularly elected government of Iraq, why can't Iraq support insurgents who want to overthrow the dictatorships in those countries?

There really isn't a moral equivalent between our insurgents or theirs. The end goals of agitators we should support are very different than Islamist insurgents therefore I disagree with your comparison. I do however fully agree with your conclusion. Supporting a journalist who wakes up one day and decides he's not going to lie for the state is not supporting insurgency, it's supporting civil society. Aggressively supporting civil behaviors that are the foundation of democratic governance may incite despots to commit violence but will never be the cause of violence. The Iranian government is despotic and therefore the cause of such violence. The Iranian government is to blame for civil unrest in their nation. Somehow, Iranian officials do not realize that It is the obligation of responsible government to allow dissent, just as it is the duty of dissenters to stand for their liberty.

The sad truth is that the despotic Iranian and Syrian governments have indoctrinated the most loyal of their followers into believing the basic principles of liberty and freedom are the opposite, hegemony. They give guns and money to those who would fight for twisted logic and that is why their combatants are terrorists and insurgents. Their can be no mistake between the ideology of terrorists and those who know the meaning of freedom and are willing to defend their natural right to live free.

Good post. BTTT.

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Iran offers Georgia assistance in handling energy crisis (wonder if they blew up the pipes?)
Posted by humint to x5452
On News/Activism 01/27/2006 11:45:03 AM PST · 10 of 17

SOURCE: World Energy "Areas To Watch"

Another flashpoint in the Caspian/Caucasus region is Georgia's remote Pankisi Gorge region, which Chechen rebels reportedly use as a base and refuge. On August 14, 2002, Russia accused Georgia of directly assisting Chechen rebels and allowing them to use the Pankisi Gorge as a base for attacks on Russia. On August 9, Russia's defense minister said that the Pankisi Gorge had emerged as the world's second main "nest" of terrorism. The Pankisi Gorge situation, along with Russian support for Georgian rebels in the breakaway province of Abkhazia, has raised tensions between the two countries in recent months. On August 24, 2002, White House spokesman Ari Fleischer stated that the United States was "deeply concerned about credible reports that Russian military aircraft indiscriminately bombed villages in northern Georgia on August 23, 2002, resulting in the killing of civilians," and worried that the attacks could "escalate existing tension between Russia and Georgia."

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Amoral Euphemism
Posted by humint to mal
On News/Activism 01/27/2006 11:24:31 AM PST · 8 of 8

Demed if you do, Demed if you don't. Politics -sheeeesh...

U.S. Air Strike on Iranian Nuclear Facillities:

Perhaps two or three weeks of messy bombing, shown on CNN round-the-clock. Unavoidable collateral damage served up hourly on Al Jazeera as “genocide”. Missed targets, followed by worries about retribution from terrorists, now armed with nuclear waste and righteous indignation, vowing to “avenge” the infidel attack. Shiite turmoil in Iraq. Investigations into overflights of Muslim airspace. Contention over American use of Turkish, Iraqi, or Kuwaiti facilities to attack another Muslim country. Iranian-backed Hezbollah incursions into Israel. Fierce denunciations from the Russians and Chinese. Private glee and public “remorse” from the Europeans. Pulitzer-prizes and whistle-blower adulation for CIA leakers and Washington Post up-and-coming reporters. More Michael Moore and Noam Chomsky rants, reverberated by yet more shrillness from Sens. Boxer, Durbin, and Kennedy. Sky-high oil prices with the attendant conspiratorial talk about oil grabs and Zionist plotting. And more still.

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Nizhniy Novgorod muftis condemn the anti-Israeli call of Iranian president
Posted by humint to x5452
On Religion 01/27/2006 10:54:47 AM PST · 2 of 6

‘We should do all that is possible to overcome not only anti-semitism, but also any manifestation of intolerance, extremism and xenophobia’, emphasizes the statement published on the web-site of the Moslem Board on Friday.

Good action items! There is a lot of work that needs to be done on this issue and it isn't going to make much headway without Moslem leadership. Good Post. BTTT.

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Democracy in Palestine
Posted by humint to Wrangler22
On Bloggers & Personal 01/27/2006 10:45:30 AM PST · 2 of 4

As a legitimately elected government, they can now be treated the same as any sovereign nation, and will be expected, by the international community, to renounce its terrorist ways.

Legitimately elected government and legitimate government are two very different concepts. Responsibility has now been heaped on Hamas's back to govern. Before now, they were antagonists. Transitioning from antagonist to responsible governor is like a movie critic becoming a director. Sure it can happen... but the opening act will determine if the audience is going to sit through the entire showing.

Good post. BTTT.

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Iran cooler on Russian nuclear proposal
Posted by humint to Flavius
On News/Activism 01/27/2006 8:45:02 AM PST · 7 of 8

Regarding the Russian proposal, Larijani said its "capacity is not sufficient for Iran's nuclear technology. It can be part of a package and taken into consideration within it." --- Half truths and lies... so easy to expose. These guys are trying hard to start a war!

SOURCE: The Myth of Iranian Nuclear Fuel Self Sufficiency

Setting economics aside, even if speculative uranium deposits in Iran are assumed and included, Iran is not close to possessing sufficient uranium to fuel seven 1000 MWe for their lifetime. It is thus impossible for Iran to avoid dependence on a foreign supplier for its uranium fuel. Iran does not have enough uranium to fuel its planned reactors. Known uranium (1,427) + speculative (13,850) = 15,277 tons U. Assume Bushehr burns 22 tons of LEU annually, Iran’s stated nuclear plans show Iran will run out of uranium for its plants in 1 year with proven reserves and 10 years with proven and speculative reserves.

Global Estimated Uranium Reserves

Nuclear power plants

SOURCE: Russia’s Domestic Uranium Consumption and Stockpiles

Russia exports 16,000t of uranium each year, and uses 8,000-8,500t to produce nuclear fuel.[6] As of December 2000 it was estimated that Russian nuclear power stations used between 3,000t and 4,500t of uranium annually with an additional 2,200t committed to fuel Soviet-built reactors in the NIS and Eastern Europe. Approximately 1,000t is used to produce submarine fuel.[8,9,25]

Russia relies heavily on its large uranium stockpile to make up the difference between the uranium it annually exports and uses domestically (24,000-24,500t) and the uranium it annually mines (2,000-2,500t). Russia's stockpiles are equivalent to 500,000t of low-enriched uranium (LEU) . This figure takes into account 1,400t of highly enriched uranium (HEU) which is equivalent to 420,000t of LEU added to 80,000t of uranium that has been stockpiled over the years.[8]

Minatom plans to increase the number of civilian nuclear plants over the next 20 years and expand nuclear energy production, which would increase domestic consumption of uranium.[8] Viktor Ivanov, a spokesman for the Russian National Industrial Technology Research and Design Institute, stated in June 2000 that Russia will use approximately 10,000t of uranium annually beginning in 2010.[3]


Russian uranium exports come from three sources: uranium that is mined, uranium from stockpiles, and LEU that is downblended from HEU under the US-Russia HEU Deal. The last year statistics for Russian uranium exports were made public was in 1996, when approximately 16,000t was exported.[10] In December 2000, the director of Russia's Geologorazvedka State Research and Production Enterprise said that export volume remains at 16,000t.[10] According to the French company Cogema, Russia accounts for 40% of uranium supply to European countries.[10] Russia began exporting uranium in the mid-1970s to France, Spain, Great Britain, Belgium, and Germany. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, export to South Korea and the United States began.[11]

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IRAN, the U.S. and the WTO
Posted by humint to CarrotAndStick
On Bloggers & Personal 01/26/2006 10:04:38 PM PST · 7 of 10

Other strategic realities have influenced the new Saudi-India relationship - New Delhi's love-fest with Washington has not gone unnoticed in Riyadh.

This is a great sentence on developing international relations. The description love-fest is priceless... I'm looking forward to a description of the virtual orgy of negotiations next month at the International Atomic Energy Agency. These kinds of descriptors make the news fun. Thanks for sharing it.

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IRAN, the U.S. and the WTO
Posted by humint to humint; CarrotAndStick; voice of india
On Bloggers & Personal 01/26/2006 9:35:31 PM PST · 4 of 10


India fears Iran may extract high price for piped gas ANUPAMA AIRY -- Posted online: Friday, January 27, 2006

NEW DELHI, JAN 26: The real issue regarding the price of the piped gas from Iran has finally come to the fore. The petroleum ministry now fears that given the prevailing high oil prices, the issue of gas price may be “extremely difficult to resolve” as Iran can be expected to seek the highest possible price for its gas.

It is not incidental but these concerns come after two years of intense deliberations among the three countries over various issues concerning the multi-billion dollar Iran-Pakistan-India (IPI) gas pipeline project.

“Since the piped gas is expected to be utilised primarily for power projects in north, north-western and central India, an assessment would have to be made about the price that India can afford; taking into account the price of competing energy sources including coal, hydro and nuclear. Petroleum ministry will closely consult the ministry of power in respect of gas price,” says an internal note of the petroleum ministry.

However, before initiating discussions with Iran on the formula relating to the price of gas, the petroleum ministry is planning to approach the Cabinet to seek its directions on an appropriate project structure for executing the IPI pipeline project. The Cabinet’s view would also be sought on the proposed tri-partite government-to-government framework agreement.

The ministry’s note discussed two options as regards the project structure. The first talks about New Delhi’s participation in a corporate structure, which would mean that India would own, build and operate the entire project. Under the second option, gas will be purchased by India at the Pakistan-India border, with the project being implemented in Iran and Pakistan by the two governments concerned (the pipeline will end at the Indian border after which Indian companies will link it with the natural gas grid).

The first option, as per the note, will not only provide for Indian representation at the apex corporate level but will also enable it to monitor all aspects of the project during the planning, construction and operational phases.

“However, Pakistan is expected to balk at the idea of an intrusive Indian presence monitoring activities on its territory. At the same time, Iran is sensitive to the fact that such a major multi-billion dollar project from which US companies would be excluded due to the US Sanctions Act would attract adverse US attention,” the note added.

While the second option was approved in principle by the Cabinet in February last year, a final view has not been taken in this regard as it would appear that this would be the preferred option for Pakistan and Iran.

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IRAN, the U.S. and the WTO
Posted by humint to humint
On Bloggers & Personal 01/26/2006 9:24:10 PM PST · 3 of 10


"Gas scandal" starts between Turkey and Iran -- 27 January 2006 [02:11] - Today.Az

Gas crisis happened between Turkey and Iran like Ukraine and Russia.

As APA reports, the reason for the crisis is Iran's decreasing the gas delivered to Turkey after the weather got cold. Iran had delivered 20 cubic meters gas to Turkey a day, but now it is 6 cubic meters only. "Hot line" has been opened in Energy Ministry of Turkey, because of the situation. Energy Minister of Turkey Hilmi Guler said the problem might last 1 or 2 days and the population can not notice the problem and he contacted energy ministers of Russia and Iran, and ambassadors to the country. As a result, Iran pledged to deliver 10.5 cubic meters gas to Turkey a day. At the same time, after prime minister Recap Tayyip Erdogan made a call to Russian president Vladimir Putin, Russia decided to increase the volume of the gas.


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Iran hails Hamas victory
Posted by humint to Brux
On News/Activism 01/26/2006 5:29:37 PM PST · 21 of 21

Iran is awash in petro-wealth. If the U.S. decides to diplomatically and economic disengage because Hamas took this election, such a maneuver would virtually guarantee Iran would fill the vacuum. RECALL:

We have to figure out a way to remain engaged there despite the fact, American foreign policy is to not deal with organizations on our FTO list. Regional peace and global security depend on it. If Iran sparks a war on the back of these elections the case for democracy will be seriously wounded for many years to come. No matter what the outcome, this was the right thing to do. Democracy is the natural state of human affairs. We wanted to hear what the people there had to say and they spoke clearly. Granted, these are their first democratic words. I believe it’s OK to hope that their democratic message from the ballot box will not be their last, all the while realizing that hope is no substitute for clear policy.

What’s going to drive me crazy are all of the pundits who are going to start their commentary with some paraphrased version of, “I told you so!” You told us what, “Adults in the ME cannot live side by side without slaughtering one another.” Well, the killing hasn’t started yet… and it doesn’t have to.

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Iran hails Hamas victory
Posted by humint to bill1952
On News/Activism 01/26/2006 1:05:13 PM PST · 19 of 21

Yes, they said the exact same thing about the NAZI party in pre war Germany.

I appreciate where you are coming from on this but my comment was based on a very simple concept that can be described with your analogy; before Hitler instigated WWII he had an historic opportunity not to instigate WWII.

No matter how clear our collective future appears to us, it has not yet come to pass. It’s not appeasement to point out the error in Hitlerian or Hamas-ian logic. You may consider it futile but I don’t. Although it appears we are all marching on the path to a massive war, there are still tangible choices at each point of contention. As much as we may wish people there had not voted for violence when they voted for Hamas, they did. This means opportunities have been lost and new ones have come up…

One way to look at my commentary might be by imagining what you might have said to a German in the lead up to WWII. Of course there is the obvious, "We are going to kill you and all of your neighbors if you don't stop Hitler yourself". My way would be like this, "You’ve been wrong in the past but before we are forced to kill you and all of your neighbors for your crimes against society, your orginization has an historic opportunity to renounce violence and govern responsibly." Does this version of my comment still smell like appeasement? FYI, it’s not.

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Bush backs Russian nuclear plan for Iran
Posted by humint to CarrotAndStick
On News/Activism 01/26/2006 10:58:41 AM PST · 17 of 25

It's a good plan but the Iranian government would have to backtrack a long way to execute the Russian plan. But it's important to realize that backtracking now, after making so many threats, will not let the Iranian government off the hook. They've forced the free world's hand in such a public and belligerent way that the American mission has become global stability through democratization. Iran is high on our President's "TO DO" list.

ARTICLE: Spreading democracy and freedom, especially in Muslim countries, is high on Bush's foreign policy agenda. It has been criticized by some as a misguided attempt to impose U.S. values and political beliefs.

If any person has had the pleasure to experience the diversity of lifestyles, cultures and opinions of these United States, they would know immediately that it would be physically impossible to impose American political beliefs on anyone. In fact, American values are clearly opposed to restrictions on political beliefs. How is an American foreign policy engineered to foster global stability on the premise of respect for individual rights misguided? This is a totally rhetorical question... From your previous posts you've implied, that although American foreign policy may at times be unbalanced, it is by no means misguided.

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Iran hails Hamas victory
Posted by humint to West Coast Conservative
On News/Activism 01/26/2006 10:27:16 AM PST · 14 of 21

"Just as Islamic Iran defends the rights of the Palestinians, we defend the rights of Islamic Iran. We are part of a united front against the enemies of Islam," Meshaal said during the visit.

Meshaal... Islam isn't failing to keep its word at the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)! Islam is not going to be sent to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) for maintaining a clandestine nuclear program that strongly resembles a nuclear weapons development program. Islam is not the Iranian government! Islam is not the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corp! Islam is not the money that finances Hamas projects be they terrorist or otherwise.

Islam is a religion wholly separated from earthly materialism. The threats you perceive are earthly threats and target individuals, organizations and nations that commit violence in order to influence political destiny in their favor. It is by coincidence that your Muslim brothers, as individuals, members of organizations, or officials of state, find themselves the target of investigations into terrorist crimes. It is precisely because of their irresponsibility and repeated failures of leadership that they find themselves linked together in solidarity. These repeated failures of leadership are earthly failures and earthly failures always come with consequences. Islam has no enemies but incompetent officials do. If an incompetent official happens to be Muslim, so then they become enemies of peace and security. Indeed, the same nations that intend to hold Tehran responsible for its nuclear noncompliance at the IAEA protect freedom of religion and are therefore, friends of Islam.

Hamas’s democratic victory is an historic opportunity to exercise real leadership skills and develop tangible techniques of responsible governance. Looking for common cause with irresponsible governors in Iran and elsewhere will squander this opportunity. Make note Meshaal, opportunities this big are extremely rare.

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Invasion of Iran is not an option
Posted by humint to Costigan
On General/Chat 01/26/2006 9:36:56 AM PST · 42 of 97

Invasion of Iran is not an option, despite Newt Gingrich's comparison of the Iran leader to Hitler and this situation to 1935 !

First… I think it's a mischaracterization to suggest Newt's historical juxtaposition implies his solution is invasion. His words on the Iran problem reveal a very mature alarm that states [Americans should begin preparations for a "long war" with Iran]. His steps, although not comprehensive, are clear. Second… All options are available, including invasion. Just because it’s an unpleasant option does not suggest that it is not an option. Many flavors of military options ARE on the table. Each are in the box labeled “LAST RESORT”.

Yours is a very curt analysis. Slow down a bit and think the problem through… Instead of ruling out options put some more on the table.

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World reaction to the Hamas victory: 'Fasten your seatbelts'
Posted by humint to Dark Skies
On News/Activism 01/26/2006 8:35:05 AM PST · 24 of 52

World reaction to the Hamas victory: 'Fasten your seatbelts' World opinion round-up...

We've reached an event horizon in world history. It feels awkward to know that future generations will look back at our turbulent time and study it. I know, rather I have faith, that just over the horizon there is a new age of peace and prosperity like mankind has never known before. Will we have to cross a sea of blood to get there? I hope not.

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IRAN, the U.S. and the WTO
Posted by humint to humint
On Bloggers & Personal 01/26/2006 6:45:00 AM PST · 2 of 10

Iran dilemma -- 01/26/2006 -- By TAKASHI KAMIGURI and HIDEAKI ABE -- The Asahi Shimbun

Iran's publicly stated intention to advance its nuclear technology threatens a key element of Japan's energy strategy--development of the Azadegan oil field. Defying international opposition, Iran announced on Jan. 10 that it had resumed uranium enrichment operations. If Tehran does not alter its position, Japan could lose its rights to the field.

As the international community leans toward Tehran sanctions, a senior official of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry explains Japan's dilemma. "We want to develop the field at any cost," the official said. "But opposing nuclear weapons proliferation is the national policy of Japan as the world's only country to suffer atomic bombings. "It's impossible for Azadegan alone to escape any impact (from the nuclear issue and possible sanctions)."

Chief Cabinet Secretary Shinzo Abe said Jan. 13 that Japan supports a call to send the issue to the U.N. Security Council. While joining the United States and Europe in calling on Iran to drop its nuclear program, resource-poor Japan cannot afford to lose the development rights. With estimated reserves of 26 billion barrels, the Azadegan field is one of the largest in the Middle East.

Japan's Inpex Corp., in which the government has a 36-percent stake, won 75 percent of development rights in February 2004. It was a much-needed enhancement of Japan's energy security after Arabian Oil Co., a Japanese company, lost its rights to Saudi Arabia's Khafji field in 2000. When in full operation, Azadegan is expected to produce 260,000 barrels a day, boosting Japan's imports of self-developed oil by 60 percent.

In fiscal 2004, Japan imported 4.17 million barrels of oil a day, of which only 450,000 barrels came from fields of its own development. Iran's nuclear move came just as Inpex is preparing to begin full-scale development this spring after land mines from the Iran-Iraq war are removed. Inpex is also negotiating with France's Total SA on handing over part of its development rights to reduce risk, industry sources said.

Its integration with Teikoku Oil Co. scheduled in April is intended to tap Teikoku's technical expertise to develop Azadegan, the sources said. But those efforts could be nullified by Iran's nuclear ambitions. "The impact is extremely grave," said Toshihiro Nikai, minister of economy, trade and industry. "We will decide how to act in consultation with other countries."

Some officials of his ministry, however, are set to go ahead with the Azadegan project. Even if the Iranian issue is sent to the U.N. Security Council, it would not lead to a ban on Azadegan development or on imports of Iranian oil, the officials say. The officials are concerned with China's aggressive push to strengthen ties with Iran. It recently won rights to the Yadavaran oil field in the country. "Even if Japan gives up Azadegan, China will move in, resulting in no damage whatsoever to Iran," said a senior ministry official. "We should separate the nuclear issue from oil development."

Pessimism is growing, however, in the oil industry. "The United States and Europe take the Iranian move seriously," an industry source said. "As it stands, it will be difficult to start drilling." The government is stepping up its diplomatic efforts to persuade Iran to drop the nuclear program. Foreign Minister Taro Aso phoned his Iranian counterpart, Manouchehr Mottaki, on Jan. 18 to press for cessation of nuclear activities. Aso told Mottaki that criticism in the international society is far stronger than Iran thinks. But the Iranian minister stuck to the country's stance, telling Aso the moves are intended only for research.

At a news conference on Jan. 19, Aso did not hide his irritation over Iran's hard-line position. "As it stands, the issue will surely be sent to the Security Council. Does Iran understand that?" he said. If the council moves to impose sanctions, its negative impact will be felt strongly by Japan.

The damage will not be limited to Azadegan. If the sanctions involve an Iranian oil embargo, or if Iran, angered by the U.S. and European criticism, halts its oil exports, it will hit Japan hard. Iran is the third-largest oil exporter to Japan, accounting for about 15.9 percent. Aso said he would continue efforts to dissuade Iran from its nuclear development. Since Washington has said it is seeking a diplomatic resolution, a senior Foreign Ministry official said it is unlikely that the council will immediately impose sanctions. But even without sanctions, there are concerns Washington may call for Japan to stop development of the Azadegan field, the official added.(IHT/Asahi: January 26,2006)

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On not dealing with danger
Posted by humint to 13Sisters76
On News/Activism 01/26/2006 5:11:56 AM PST · 4 of 9

What would Israel do? What would the Europeans do? In the end, however, expect America, as usual, to do the heavy lifting -- no matter the criticism. The question remains: Will the worldwide hostility toward President Bush, and the desire to interpret everything he says as "a lie," prevent rational people from doing rational things to prevent the irrational people from committing mass murder?

These are the tough questions... Good Post BTTT!

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  • IRAN, the U.S. and the WTO
  • Free Republic Commentary 1/26-2/13

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