(The better informed everybody becomes the greater the chance that war can be prevented and propaganda can not distort reality. With a couple of clicks you can do your part by simply forwarding this to others.)
Why Iran's Mullahs Cannot Rest Easy
By Ray Takeyh, Senior Fellow of Middle Eastern Studies at Council of Foreign Relations
(This is a MUST read Op-Ed by Ray Takeyh and the paragraphs that I have highlighted below are very true.)
In many ways, the Green Movement is a descendent and successor of all the previous political coalitions that have sought to liberalize Iran.
The regime, to be sure, has managed to regain control of the streets through brute force, show trials and repression. However, what is important is that the Green Movement severed the essential link between state and society.
For long, the Islamic Republic sought to present itself as different from typical Middle East autocracies, because its electoral procedures provided it with a veneer of legitimacy. That legitimacy, along with the republican pillar of the state, has evaporated.
For now, the Islamic Republic endures. The mixture of strident nationalism and Islamism that has guided its foreign policy for the past three decades remains intact.
But beneath the facade of order and stability the clerical state continues to face a deep crisis of legitimacy. It is impossible to predict whether the Green Movement will revive. But whatever its fate, history suggests that another social movement is lurking around the corner, ready to challenge the clerics.
(Three items below you will find a link for an interview with Mr. Ray Takeyh.)
A rare admission from Israel
By Taymoor Nabili
Was it a momentary lapse of concentration or an honest admission?
Last week, in an interview with Israel's Deputy Prime Minister Dan Meridor in Jerusalem, I heard something I have not heard before.
Let's start with the background.
With the P5+1 (the US, UK, France, Russia, China and Germany) talks on Iran's nuclear programme about to kick off, and the air thick with talk of a military attack on Iran, it seemed appropriate to try to gain some perspective from the Israeli establishment.
As Minister of Intelligence and Atomic Energy with a background in Iran issues, Meridor was the perfect man to talk to.
An able and experienced politician, Meridor was mostly happy to skirt the direct questions and recite approved talking points.
It's when I challenged him on the biggest talking point of all, Iran's supposed determination to "wipe Israel off the face of the map," that Meridor seemed to stumble outside the lines of the agreed narrative.
Meridor: [Iran's leaders] all come basically ideologically, religiously with the statement that Israel is an unnatural creature, it will not survive. They didn't say 'we'll wipe it out', you are right, but [that] it will not survive, it is a cancerous tumor, it should be removed;
Nabili: Well, I am glad you acknowledged they didn't say they will wipe it out, because certainly Israeli politicians…
Meridor: … they say it will be removed, needs to be removed …
Netanyahu’s Real Fear
by AKIVA ELDAR
From Netanyahu’s perspective, the suspension of the Iranian nuclear threat could become a Pyrrhic victory: The world powers will turn toward other crises in the Middle East – including, of course, the Israeli occupation and its injustices.
He who seeks to part his neighbor from nuclear weapons must expect that he will be asked to open his home to nuclear inspectors. What will Israel do if Iran follows through on its “threat” to participate in a conference, scheduled to be held in Helsinki late this year or early next year, focused on turning the Middle East into a nuclear-free zone?
What would happen if Obama were to tell Netanyahu and Barak that the Iranians are willing to give up, totally and finally, not just on their nuclear program, but also on their incitement against the Zionist entity? In return, Israel would have to give up, totally and finally, on its plans for more settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, and support the establishment of a Palestinian state.
'New Atmosphere' In Iran Negotiations
Interview with Ray Takeyh, Senior Fellow of Middle Eastern Studies at Council of Foreign Relations
Do you think this softer negotiating approach will be followed by any internal easing in Iran? There's been no sign of any easing of the domestic crackdown, has there?
No. I think the domestic crackdown will persist, for several reasons: the Iranian regime is even more suspicious of its citizens, given these sort of manifestations of people power that have taken place in the Middle East.
The Arab awakening had two implications for Iran: it essentially suggested that aroused citizenry, mobilized, can actually effect government change.
That's not a good message for the Iranian ruling class.
On the other hand, it has led to a surge of Islamist parties in most of the Middle East, in which the Iranians have taken a more benign view towards Tunisia, Egypt, or what have you. So it's a double-edged sword, but I would say at this particular point that the tone and the posture of the accommodations they have taken abroad have not translated into a similar domestic political opening.
Meanwhile, Inside Iran: Khamenei Consolidates His Power
By Babak Dehghanpisheh
"The attempt to distance the regime from Mortazavi, the attempt to link him to Ahmadinejad and the attempt by Khamenei to distance himself from Ahmadinejad — all of these are efforts by Khamenei to show that he's beginning to hear the message of the people.", said Abbas Milani director of Iranian Studies program at Stanford University.
(If you are not familiar with Mortazavi and his background I suggest reading the following by Prof. Muhammad Sahimi for a chilling blow by blow of his past crimes.)
Mortazavi Ordered Back to Post by Ahmadinejad
by PROF. MUHAMMAD SAHIMI
Radio Zamaneh reports that Saeed Mortazavi, after a brief resignation, was back at his post Monday as chief of Iran's Social Security Organization by order of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
According to the website,
"The impeachment of the Labour Minister [Abdolreza Sheikholeslami] for appointing Mortazavi was supposed to happen [Sunday], but the signatories to the impeachment motion withdrew their signatures after senior MP [Gholam Ali] Haddad Adel assured them that Mortazavi had promised to resign from his position."
"[Ali] Motahari, a Tehran MP, said [Monday] that Mortazavi's resignation lasted only half a day and that the MPs had been deceived. He added, however, that impeachment is still an available option that should be firmly embraced."
"Fars [News Agency, a semioffical news service controlled by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps] reported that Mortazavi returned to the Social Security Office [...] and met with the organization's deputies."
Senators Reject Iran Talks, Demand More Sanctions
By Jason Ditz
(Of course Senator's that are in the pockets of the Israeli lobby are going to do this, because it insures money for their re-election campaigns which is the top priority of all Senator's.)
Iran Cleric Slams Gays And Lesbians As Being Inferior To Animals
(Huffington Post is blocked in Iran and I really don't want to waste time going through a proxy to find the actual link for the above article, which is not even worth reading as the title says it all.)
( The scientific facts are that a certain percentage of human beings are homosexual and this can not be denied, therefore they must have their rights protected.)
(It should be noted that transsexuals in Iran are tolerated and can even receive a government loan for a sex change operation. Reports of people mistakenly picking up a beautiful "woman" on Vali Asr (Pahlavi) Blvd. are common.)
US Aircraft carriers are “sweet targets” says Iranian Commander
By Robert Tilford
(Whenever articles show up in the mainstream media about military confrontation with Iran reference is made to various war games that American's have conducted where they were "defeated" through "swarming" tactics and the like. What's interesting is that they never mention Iran's Sunburn missiles and the Silkworms.)
(The above photograph is of the Sunburn missile. And below is a link for more information. It's a bit dated but a quick search should bring up more up to date information. Iran test fired the Sunburn around 2005-6 if I remember correctly but has not mentioned anything about it since.)
This weapon has a top speed of Mach 3, and is considered one of the most lethal anti-ship missiles in the world. The high speed of the missile means a typical response time for the target of only 25 to 30 seconds, giving a target little time to react.
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