I am a member of the National Iranian-American Council (NIAC), and the following is her record of accomplishments through the ACTIONS taken by NIAC. You are welcome to tell me about your Iranian-American Organization’s accomplishments?
In a different blog, a commenter boasted that there are numerous Iranian-American organizations hinting that there is nothing special about NIAC while another commenter compared NIAC supporters to rats coming out. Well…. That made this rat to think about why I support NIAC versus another organization such as PDMI.
You see, in an industrial setting, we look at record of accomplishments and not what someone is boasting to do, complain and especially playing the blame-game. And frankly, if I want “speech therapy”, I will listen to a number of Farsi TV satellite channels or hundreds of YouTube videos. I was interested to find tangible / measureable accomplishments through the ACTIONS taken by NIAC. So, I categorized NIAC’s ACTIONS ending in real outcomes in 3 categories for your view; 1. Opposing the MKO’s rhetoric; 2. Acting on behalf of issues important to Iranian-Americans; and 3. Opposing the IRI’s (the IRI=IRI) injustices while countering the war-mongers.
1. What have Trita Parsi and NIAC done to bring the full fury of MKO, and now, the unholy alliance of MKO / neocons / AIPAC?
NIAC, and Trita Pasi in particular, has accomplished the following result through ACTIONS to oppose the Rajavi cult. What is your relationship with the rajavi cult? And, what have you done to oppose them?
In early 90’s, Trita Parsi, a young Zoroastrian Iranian-Swedish student applied for a high school exchange program and spent some time in the home of Rep. Bob Ney (R, PA), and later after college, as an intern in Ney’s office. Representative Ney knows Farsi and since he wanted a niche in the US Congress, he chose to take up issues related to Iran/Iranians. Soon, Ney was approached by the members of the MKO who pretended to be freedom fighters working against IRI, and they wanted Ney to support them and get them off the terrorist list. While Ney initially agreed, and took $4,000 from MEK members in 1995, he shortly thereafter changed his mind after talking with Trita Parsi who described the MKO as an Islamic cult hated by ALL Iranian factions. Under Trita Parsi’s influence, Bob Ney became an avid opponent of the MKO and he even identified the MKO contributor, Alireza Jafarzadeh, on Fox news and demanded his removal. Needless to say, the MKO has remained on the US terrorist watch list, and they do not have a foothold in the US Congress.
Meanwhile, Trita Parsi and NIAC have paid dearly by being the constant target of accusations / innuendos by the MKO members, See, e.g., Who Is Hassan Daioleslam?, OR Hassan Dai's interview with Andisheh TV (relationship with the MKO), OR Neocons, the MeK, and the Fight Against Iranian-Americans, OR BBC video report on the Hassan Dai/NIAC/Neo-con/AIPAC controversy………
An unholy alliance: AIPAC and/or neo-con members have had a longstanding relationship with the MKO. For example, in 2004, Richard Perle spoke at a Mujahedin-e Khalq fundraiser disguised as a Bam benefit, and most recently John Bolton and company attended and gave speeches at an MKO rally in France. It is said that they considered the MEK as a possible vanguard against the Iranian government. Now, especially after NIAC’s stance against war with Iran (See point 3), we see the emergence of a neo-con / AIPAC / MKO unholy axis headed probably by John Bolton (based on his cozy speech in the MKO rally in Paris) and directed in the background by folks like Timmermans & lakes who fire a constant barrage of verbal assault on NIAC, See, e.g., Neocons, the MeK, and the Fight Against Iranian-Americans), OR Neocons Attack Iranian-American Progressive Organizations Setting the Record Straight On NIAC , OR VOA response to the Washington Time article, OR NIAC response to the Washington Time article……….
After 9/11, when NIAC was formed, the original mission was to promote Iranian-American civic participation and then, by the vote of the membership in 2006, NIAC began taking stronger advocacy positions. These positions ARE on NIAC’s website.
2. NIAC has accomplished the following results, through her ACTIONS, to promote Iranian-American civic participation, to prevent smear campaigns against Iranian-Americans and to protect Iranian heritage. What has your Iranian-American organization done towards that end?
* Ended Monster.com's discrimination against the Iranian Americans.
* Effectively opposed and stopped legislation that would bar every Iranian from entering the United States.
* Corrected the National Geographic Society's 8th edition maps to read "Persian Gulf" instead of "Arabian Gulf." And, now, NIAC is correcting a State Department spokesman’s Arabian Gulf blunder that was probably said to please the Saudis who are about to buy $60 billion worth of military toys.
* Protect the Persepolis Fortification Tablets: NIAC, in cooperation with the Iranian lawyers (IALA), moved swiftly to protect the Persepolis Tablets (on loan to the University of Chicago) from take-over by a law-suit brought by the families who lost loved ones as result of IRI’s support of terrorist bombings in Israel. The NIAC activities have included fundraisers for the Persepolis Tablets Defense Fund, conversations with the Congressional policymakers and the White House….. The case is on its way to the US Supreme Court now.
My comment: The thousands of Persepolis Tablets is a heritage handed down to us from the time of the Achaemenids. It is very important to prevent the disastrous outcome of these tablets ending up on the auction block. The NY NIAC-chapter alone raised $110,000 for the Persepolis Defense Fund. Please contribute to the Persepolis Defense Fund, if you can.
* Compelled a retraction from Rep. Jane Harman for her statement regarding the "separation" of Iran's ethnic groups.
* Obtained an apology from Fox sportscasters for racially discriminatory remarks against NBA player Hamed Haddadi.
* Elicited an apology from MSNBC's Don Imus for a derogatory comment about an Iranian airliner crash that killed 43 passengers.
* Removed offensive and inaccurate portrayals of Iranian Americans in the film Crossing Over.
My comment: One may say “so what that NIAC got apologies from ….” But, the question you should ask is why the US media/politicians do not attack the African-Americans, the Jewish-Americans or the Cuban-Americans. You see, after 9/11, the Iranian-Americans, one of the most educated & progressive segments of the US society were stacked up with a bunch of cave-dwelling Bedouins, and it seemed that it was OK to dump on us with impunity. NIAC’s actions send a message that there is a price to pay if you make inflammatory remarks regarding the Iranian-American community.
* Registered thousands of Iranian-American voters.
* Published the first-ever Census of the Iranian-American community.
* NIAC trains Iranian Americans through civic participation at dozens of workshops across the United Sates, strengthening future generations, See, e.g., From the Big Apple to the Bluegrass State, Iranian Americans Get Involved.
* NIAC gives our youth a helping hand through office internships and the NIAC Public Service and Journalism Fellowship and has supported youth-related efforts such as Iranian Alliances Across Borders' Camp Ayandeh leadership program, See, e.g., Camp Ayandeh Featured in Washington Post .
* NIAC monitors, influences, and shapes national legislation affecting Iranian Americans, See, e.g., The Mid-term Elections and Iranian American Interests: Analysis of the Senate, and Now is our chance to save the Persepolis tablets!
* NIAC defends Iranian-American interests against corporate and media bias and governmental neglect, including battling for status under SBA 8(a).
* NIAC regularly hosts briefings on Capitol Hill for congressional staffers on areas of interest to the Iranian-American community. Some of NIAC’s past briefings have focused on Iran's parliamentary elections, Iran's nuclear program, Iran's role in Iraq, and more.
My comment: To me, the nuclear issue is a distraction to hide the atrocities committed by IRI. Inflamed by derogatory remarks of “wiping this and that & death to this and that”, IRI has got the world uptight about the nuclear issue while scores of Iranians are being intimidated, tortured and murdered every day while her wealth is being plundered and stored in foreign banks. Meanwhile, the world only focuses on the most heinous social acts of IRI such as stoning. Furthermore, assuming that Iran is working on a nuclear bomb, does anyone think that they would load it on a home-made scud and send it to Israel? Or, trust a Palestinian/Hamas to detonate it? And finally, I do not think that IRI is that stupid to take a chance on the nuclear contamination of Jerusalem as well as the friendly allies, Hamas and Hezbollah, surrounding a thin strip of land called Israel.
3. NIAC has accomplished the following results, through her ACTIONS, to prevent war with Iran, to oppose the influence of war-mongers headed by AIPAC/neo-cons and to promote democracy / human rights in Iran. What has your Iranian-American organization done towards that end?
You see, the thought of bombs flying into Tehran and other cities brings nightmares similar to Saddam’s scuds raining in the 80’s. I personally am not happy to see my old neighborhoods in ruins and specially loss of lives towards my friends / families / Iranians. I am not alone in this regard since 70% of Iranian-Americans do not want a war with Iran according to Berkeley University’s study. While one may say that the smart bombs are accurate, the accuracy is only 85%, and the remaining 15% missiles stray around to find a target, and a stray bomb is blind and not so smart. The head nut-job John Bolton has even advocated the use of Israeli nukes on Iran to push their agenda! Scary crap, isn’t it? I have my personal preferences on bringing democracy to Iran which were outlined in an IC blog, Practical path towards democracy, making it Iranian-made.
I have had numerous communications regarding the Iranian struggles with Trita Parsi. He is in agreement that there needs to be democracy with full implementation of the human rights charter in Iran as a goal of any resistance. Furthermore, Trita has said that it is impossible to have democracy while undemocratic institutions such as velayat-e faghih or the Guardian Council exist (video part #7, Trita Parsi on Andisheh TV). But, unlike me who supports secularism, as an independent Iranian-American organization, NIAC is hesitant to support a particular faction since as soon as we talk about regime change, all the spitting contests (your way is bad) and pissing contests (my way is better) by various factions start. As a result, NIAC supports democracy in Iran, with an emphasis on the implementation of human rights as the first step towards whatever the Iranian people choose as the form of government.
So, the following is a partial list of ACTIONS taken by NIAC to prevent a war with Iran and to promote democracy / human rights within.
* NIAC has taken a stance with regards to the following bills and influenced them with voter awareness followed by electronic writing campaigns that were hand-delivered to the Congressional offices as well as talks with the Capitol staffers/Representatives:
Stand With the Iranian People: support The Stand With the Iranian People Act (H.R.4303), support Iranian Digital Empowerment Act (H.R.4301), oppose Iranian Refined Petroleum Sanctions Act (H.R. 2194), oppose Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Divestment, and Accountability Act (S.2799), support Reduce Iranian Cyber-Suppression Act (H.R.3284 / S.1475), oppose Accountability for Business Choices in Iran Act (H.R.3922), support Iran Human Rights Sanctions Act (H.R.4647 / S.3022), support Travel Ban (H.CON.RES.256)
Defend Human Rights: support Religious Freedom Resolution (H.RES.33), support Granger Resolution (H.RES.888), support Baha'i Resolution (S.RES.71 / H.Res. 175), support U.S. Hikers Resolution (S.CON.RES.40 / H.Con.Res. 189), support Robert Levinson Resolution (H.Con.Res. 36 / S.CON.RES.4) .
* 2007-2010: Twice a year, NIAC holds a major policy conference on Capitol Hill to examine the most significant and timely issues facing the US and Iran & NIAC and Amnesty International held a joint conference on Capitol Hill titled "Human Rights in Iran and U.S. Policy Options.
* 2007: Even the real rats got envious: Why has Amnesty International invited a stooge of the Iranian regime to a Congressional hearing on Iranian human rights abuses? By a jealous Kenneth Timmerman.
* 2008: Defeated a Congressional resolution that would have paved the way for a US-Iran war.
* 2009: Ensured human rights were on the agenda when the U.S. began talks with Iran. This has, hopefully, led to the recent 2010 boycott of the 8 Iranian officials with the worst human rights record.
* 2009: Helped remove sanctions on vital online communication tools like MSN Messenger, FaceBook, and YouTube to ensure the free flow of information in Iran (Stand with the people of Iran Congressional Act).
My concluding remarks: All you have seen lately is hate-blogs such as NIAC talked to ... and Perry Mason type never-ending yes/no multiple questionnaires on NIAC. I have tied to show you a different side of NIAC that totally gets smeared in the hate dust. So, one of the rats has come out in support of NIAC illustrating her accomplishments (point 1-3) in concrete / measureable outcomes through the ACTIONS taken by NIAC. Most of NIAC’s critics cannot even make up their minds if Trita Parsi is an IRI agent, a US agent or even a double agent (00TP???). If NIAC, “as an IRI agent”, got grants from the Feds, well, shame on the Feds...Then, write to the Feds and complain. If Trita Parsi lectured/consulted with the White House, the Congress, the FBI and even the CIA… So be it. As an American institution representing a portion of the Iranian-Americans, it just goes to show that NIAC is well respected and called upon to give a perspective to the other American institutions. So, whoever you are Trita Parsi, keep NIAC going, or as the cartoon that I chose depicts (w/ apologies to our resident psychiatrists): While ya’ll bitch, moan and play the blame-game, NIAC is actually succeeding in achieving tangible results.
PS, please tell me about the accomplishments of your Iranian-American organization. I may even choose to support yours!
|Recently by MM||Comments||Date|
کشف هویت واقعی مونا لیزا
|Jun 24, 2012|
|The fascinating world in 2030 in the west, OR instead, one phalange or two up your a$$ to clean up|
|Jun 02, 2012|
|ACT: New amendment to sanctions will make it easier for Persepolis tablets to be looted|
|Feb 03, 2012|
|نسرین ستوده: زندانی روز||Dec 04|
|Saeed Malekpour: Prisoner of the day||Lawyer says death sentence suspended||Dec 03|
|Majid Tavakoli: Prisoner of the day||Iterview with mother||Dec 02|
|احسان نراقی: جامعه شناس و نویسنده ۱۳۰۵-۱۳۹۱||Dec 02|
|Nasrin Sotoudeh: Prisoner of the day||46 days on hunger strike||Dec 01|
|Nasrin Sotoudeh: Graffiti||In Barcelona||Nov 30|
|گوهر عشقی: مادر ستار بهشتی||Nov 30|
|Abdollah Momeni: Prisoner of the day||Activist denied leave and family visits for 1.5 years||Nov 30|
|محمد کلالی: یکی از حمله کنندگان به سفارت ایران در برلین||Nov 29|
|Habibollah Golparipour: Prisoner of the day||Kurdish Activist on Death Row||Nov 28|