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Iran News

Bomb suspects 'were anti-Iran exiles' 2/19/2012 Bangkok Post: "Four Iranians suspected of involvement in a botched bomb plot targeting Israeli diplomats in Bangkok were members of an exiled Iranian opposition group which wanted the incident to reflect badly on Teheran, Syedsulaiman Husaini, Shia leader of Thailand, said on Sunday."

Is Iran trying to develop a missile that could reach America? 2/2/2012 CSM: "An Iranian missile under construction, caught up in a mysterious blast in November, had a range of 6,000 miles, a senior Israeli official said Thursday in a speech outside Tel Aviv."

Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK) Factsheet 7/8/2011 NIAC Insight: "1.The greatest beneficiaries of delisting MEK would be Ahmadinejad and Iranian hardliners who seek to link the U.S. and the Green Movement to MEK. 2.U.S. support for MEK would be used as a propaganda tool by hardliners to delegitimize and destroy Iran’s true democracy movement. 3.American credibility among the Iranian people would be ruined if the U.S. supported this group."

In a Computer Worm, a Possible Biblical Clue 9/29/2010 NYT

Ahmadinejad and the 9/11 attacks 9/24/2010 Al Jazeera: "About 46 per cent of the world's people believe that al-Qaeda launched the 9/11 attacks, while 15 per cent think the US government was behind the assault, and seven per cent blame Israel, according to a 2008 world public opinion study carried out by the Program on International Policy (PIPA) Attitudes at the University of Maryland, which interviewed 16,063 people worldwide… But Ahmadinejad views himself as a leader in the Arab and Muslim worlds. And, in these regions, surveys show significant sectors of the population believe that the US and Israel launched the 9/11 attacks to meet their own geopolitical goals. In Jordan, 31 per cent of those polled by PIPA believe Israel was behind the attacks, while only 11 per cent blame it on al-Qaeda. Likewise, 43 per cent of Egyptians blame Israel, and 12 per cent think the US was responsible, while only 16 per cent think al-Qaeda brought down the towers."

Signs Multiply of Fissures in Iranian Regime 9/22/2010 Tehran Bureau

Ahmadinejad-Khamenei Rift Deepens 9/11/2010 PBS: "Although Khamenei firmly supported the election fraud and recognized Ahmadinejad as the elected president even before the Guardian Council certified the returns, friction between the two men began to emerge almost immediately afterward. Khamenei overruled Ahmadinejad's appointment of Esfandiar Rahim Mashaei as his first vice president (there are eight) in August 2009. The reason, never publicized, for Khamenei's decision was that in the 1980s, when Mashaei was an interrogator of political prisoners, he married a "repentant" former member of the Mojahedin-e Khalgh Organization. In that era, Mashaei, whose daughter is married to Ahmadinejad's son, was known as Morteza Moheb Oldlia."

Clues Suggest Nuclear Scientist's Defection an Iranian Plot - Was Amiri a Double Agent? 7/16/2010 Counterpunch

Was Amiri a Double Agent? by BABAK SARFARAZ 7/15/2010 PBS: Snookered again.

Ahmadinejad Won, Get Over It! 2/27/2010 Consortium News: "PIPA analyzed multiple polls of the Iranian public from three different sources, including some before the June 12 election and some afterwards. The study found that in all the polls, a majority said they planned to vote for Ahmadinejad or had voted for him. The numbers ranged from 52 to 57 percent just before the election to 55 to 66 percent after the election. "These findings do not prove that there were no irregularities in the election process,” said Steven Kull, director of PIPA. “But they do not support the belief that a majority rejected Ahmadinejad."

Another Iranian Revolution? Not Likely 1/5/2010 NYT

Chalabi aide: I went from White House to secret prison 9/4/2009 McClatchy

The Bowels of Kahrizak - Inside Iran's Most Infamous Prison 8/11/2009 Counterpunch: "He grabbed someone from the front who seemed to be a 16-17 year old boy by the neck and said, “tell them what Muharebe means!” the boy said he did not know. The man then responded “the hell you don’t!” and began to beat him ruthlessly while saying “ tell them, tell them!” He beat him to the point that the boy was unconscious. He continued to say Muharebe means Satan, means wrong doer. He beat the boy so hard that some begin to voice their anger, but were also beaten ruthlessly. In that room of ours at least four people were killed before morning. Sadegh said in a loud voice, “there is no such thing as a toilet and tooth brush here, you do your business right here, are we clear?” There was not a single uninjured person among us, they all either had blood clotted on their faces or their eyes had been bruised like mine. And many others had broken arms and legs." [The Indo-Aryans were among the first Indo-Europeans to buy into dualism.]

Marxists Must Stand Firm Against Ahmadinejad 7/12/2009 Venezuela Analysis: "Open letter to the workers of Venezuela on Hugo Chávez's support for Ahmadinejad."

Judging the Iranian Election 7/6/2009 Consortium News: "...it appears to matter not at all that Mousavi, Ahmadinejad's main opponent in the election and very much supported by the protesters, while prime minister 1981-89, bore large responsibility for the attacks on the U.S. embassy and military barracks in Beirut in 1983, which took the lives of more than 200 Americans, and the 1988 truck bombing of a U.S. Navy installation in Naples, Italy, that killed five persons. Remarkably, a search of U.S. newspaper and broadcast sources shows no mention of this during the current protests.6 However, the Washington Post saw fit to run a story on June 27 that declared: "the authoritarian governments of China, Cuba and Burma have been selectively censoring the news this month of Iranian crowds braving government militias on the streets of Tehran to demand democratic reforms."

First round in Internet war goes to Iranian intelligence 6/28/2009 Debka, Israel

World Movement for Democracy-Made in the USA 6/28/2009 Political Research Associates: published 7/05 - "Together with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the National Endowment for Democracy has functioned as an instrument of the U.S. government’s democratization strategy over the past two decades. Whereas USAID is an agency of the State Department, quasi-governmental NED is organized as a nonprofit but funded almost entirely by the U.S. government. Since 1982, when President Reagan launched what he called a “crusade” to foster “free market democracies” and spread the a neoliberal version of the “magic of the marketplace,” both USAID and NED have channeled U.S. government development and public diplomacy funding into the democratization programs of the international institutes of the Republican and Democratic Parties, the AFL-CIO, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, as well as a wide range of institutes, political parties, and nongovernmental organizations abroad."

Was the Iranian Election Stolen? Does It Matter? 6/28/2009 WaPo: "According to their account, there are 14 people working at each polling place, in addition to an observer representing each candidate. Most polling places are schools or mosques; if the polling place is a school then the team of 14 people would include teachers. There are 2-4 representatives of the Guardian Council, and 2 from the local police. After the last votes are cast, the ballots are counted in the presence of the 14 people plus the candidates' representatives. All of them sign five documents that contain the vote totals. One of the documents goes into the ballot box; one stays with the leader of the local election team; and the others go to other levels of the electoral administration, including the Guardian Council and the Interior. The vote totals are then sent to a local center that also has representatives of the Guardian Council, Interior, and the candidates. They add up the figures from a number of ballot boxes, and then send them to Interior. In this election, the numbers were also sent directly to Interior from the individual polling places, in the presence of the 14-18 witnesses at the ballot box. Each voter presents identification, and his or her name and information is entered into a computer, and also recorded in writing. The voter's thumbprint is also put on the stub of the ballot. The voter's identification is stamped to prevent multiple voting at different voting places, and there is also a computer and written record of everyone who voted at each polling place. If this information is near accurate, it would appear that large scale fraud is extremely difficult, if not impossible, without creating an extensive trail of evidence. Indeed, if this election was stolen, there must be tens of thousands of witnesses -- or perhaps hundreds of thousands - to the theft. Yet there are no media accounts of interviews with such witnesses."

Iran’s Coming Revolution: For Civil Rights Or Beyond? 6/26/2009 Global Research: "Simplifying the events in Iran as yet another attempt at a U.S. financed “color revolution” is shortsighted, to say the least. But this is the shallow position many on the left are taking. Fortunately, millions of people partaking in mass demonstrations cannot be reduced to “mere puppets” of Uncle Sam — they have aspirations of their own and ways to achieve them."

Iran's streets are lost, but hope returns By Pepe Escobar 6/25/2009 Asia Times: "Mohsen Sazegara, president of the Washington-based Research Institute for Contemporary Iran, was one of the founders of the IRGC, in the earliest stages after the 1979 revolution. He does not mince his words. For him, Khamenei "made the biggest mistake of is life"; "he thought that with the Revolutionary Guards and the Ministry of Interior he could conquer a nation". Sazegara stresses, "for the first time in 120 years, Iranians mobilize themselves without religious help and with no religious motivation". As for the regime's repression machine, he points out that "those who kill the protesters, those we call the 'white shirts', are Revolutionary Guards, they belong to a special brigade of the intelligence division [he's referring to the above-mentioned Ashura brigade]. They look like civilians, but they have knives, iron bars and weapons"."

Top US commander warns of Iran influence in Latin America 6/25/2009 Global Research: "The real concern is not a nation-to-nation interaction, it is the connection that Iran has with extremist organizations like Hamas and Hezbollah and the potential risk that that could bring to this region," Fraser told journalists ahead of taking up the post."

Martyrs persecuted beyond death 6/25/2009 Uruknet: "To readers of JSF all this should sound awfully familiar, the persecution of the families of martyrs, the disruption of funerals, and of course the fabrications, all standard operating procedures of the IDF. Let's refresh our memories with just a few stories. Click on the links to read the full account. Of course these stories would never get the amount of publicity that oppression in Iran gets."

Iran Divided & the 'October Suprise' 6/24/2009 Consortium News: "Former Prime Minister Mir Hossein Mousavi, who claims he is the rightful winner of the June 12 presidential election, was part of the group (along with his current allies former President Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani and former House Speaker Mehdi Karoubi) that favored secret contacts with the United States and Israel to get the military supplies needed to fight the war with Iraq."

The Assembly of Experts 6/24/2009 Tehran Bureau: "Ahmadinjed came to power with the backing of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corp (IRGC) and the Basij paramilitary units. These two divisions of the armed forces, unlike the Iranian Army which remains outside the cities, are ideological groups present in all urban and rural regions of the country. Ahmadinjead and some members of his cabinet have belonged to various ranks of the IRGC. They wield an ultra-conservative rhetoric, and many of them are students of a powerful, shadowy cleric, Ayatollah Mesbah Yazdi, who has been linked to a series of publicized political chain-murders. Soon after the 2005 elections, reformist politicians and those close to Rafsanjani began warning that a “Talibanite” faction, the students of Mesbah Yazdi, had begun a systematic takeover of every aspect of the IRGC and the government. Understanding the connection between Ahmadinejad, Mesbah Yazdi, and the higher ranks of the IRGC is imperative to understanding the current situation in Iran. Information on the topic is particularly sparse, because Mesbah Yazdi is not well-known to the Western media. Muhammad Sahimi has described the relationship in clear detail in his article The Leaders of Iran’s ‘Election Coup.’ Suffice it to say here that Mesbah Yazdi is the confirmed religious leader of the faction supporting Ahmadinejad, he is openly opposed to any democratic aspect of the Islamic Republic, and he is rumored to entertain the ambition of one day assuming the position of the Supreme Leader."

Meet Shah Ali Khamenei By Pepe Escobar 6/23/2009 Asia Times: "The key move for the next few days revolves around Grand Ayatollah Husayn Montazeri's call for three days of mourning for the dead, from Wednesday to Friday. The progressive view in Tehran- and among the exiled Iranian intelligentsia - is that this is a very sophisticated, back to 1979, civil disobedience code, suggesting citizens should go indefinitely on strike. To strike is safer, and much more subversive, than hitting the streets and being bloodied by the paramilitary Basiji. Strikes were a fundamental element for the success of the revolution 30 years ago. Montazeri is also subtly signaling the strategy to seduce Iran's silent majority - which may hover around 30% to 40% of the total population. This strategy, judiciously applied over the next few days and weeks, may expand the people power river into a formidable ocean."

Brainstorming Iran: An X-Ray of Immediate History 6/23/2009 NarcoNews

A Hard Look at the Numbers - What Actually Happened in the Iranian Presidential Election? 6/22/2009 Counterpunch: "More than thirty pre-election polls were conducted in Iran since President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his main opponent, former Prime Minister Mir Hossein Mousavi, announced their candidacies in early March 2009. The polls varied widely between the two opponents, but if one were to average their results, Ahmadinejad would still come out on top. However, some of the organizations sponsoring these polls, such as Iranian Labor News Agency and Tabnak, admit openly that they have been allies of Mousavi, the opposition, or the so-called reform movement. Their numbers were clearly tilted towards Mousavi and gave him an unrealistic advantage of over 30 per cent in some polls. If such biased polls were excluded, Ahmadinejad’s average over Mousavi would widen to about 21 points. On the other hand, there was only one poll carried out by a western news organization. It was jointly commissioned by the BBC and ABC News, and conducted by an independent entity called the Center for Public Opinion (CPO) of the New America Foundation. The CPO has a reputation of conducting accurate opinion polls, not only in Iran, but across the Muslim world since 2005. The poll, conducted a few weeks before the elections, predicted an 89 percent turnout rate. Further, it showed that Ahmadinejad had a nationwide advantage of two to one over Mousavi."

Reports: Iran's clerics considering removal of Khamenei and Ahmadinejad 6/22/2009 IB Times, UK: http://angryindian.blogspot.com/

A velvet revolution in Iran? 6/22/2009 Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist: "The post-election crisis in Iran has prompted individuals and groups on the left to reduce it to an imperialist plot to foment a “color” or “velvet” revolution. In doing so, they are following the lead of Ali Khamenei, the country’s most powerful leader and a man who has never run in an election himself."

The Iranian Election and the Revolution Test 6/22/2009 Stratfor: "Now, as we saw after Tiananmen Square, we will see a reshuffling among the elite. Those who backed Mousavi will be on the defensive. By contrast, those who supported Ahmadinejad are in a powerful position. There is a massive crisis in the elite, but this crisis has nothing to do with liberalization: It has to do with power and prerogatives among the elite. Having been forced by the election and Khamenei to live with Ahmadinejad, some will make deals while some will fight — but Ahmadinejad is well-positioned to win this battle."

Deaths confirmed in Iran unrest 6/21/2009 Al Jazeera

Why Iran's Ahmadinejad is preferred in Israel 6/21/2009 CSM: "But even though Mr. Ahmadinejad has threatened the Jewish state with destruction, many officials and analysts here actually prefer the incumbent president because – short of the downfall of Iran's theocratic system of government – he'll be easier to isolate. Reformist leader Mr. Mousavi, by contrast, isn't expected to alter Iran's drive for nuclear power, but he would win international sympathy. "Just because Mousavi is called a moderate or a reformist doesn't mean he's a nice guy. After all he was approved by the Islamic leadership," says Ephraim Inbar, director of the Begin Sadat Center at Bar Ilan University. "If we have Ahmadinejad, we know where we stand. If we have Mousavi we have a serpent with a nice image.""

Iranian Woman’s Martyrdom Told on Facebook Spreads Protests 6/20/2009 Digital Journal

Robert Fisk: Khamenei is fighting for his own position as well as Ahmadinejad's 6/20/2009 Independent: "Ayatollah Ali Khamenei was Thomas Cromwell yesterday, praising those he loathed with just enough directness for the recipient to know that a Supreme Leader's anger will embrace a senior cleric or two. When he expressed his admiration for Ali Akbar Rafsanjani's revolutionary credentials and added that "nobody has accused this gentleman of corruption" – who said they had? – you knew exactly what he meant. Think profits from pistachio nuts and the Tehran Metro."

Robert Fisk’s World: In Tehran, fantasy and reality make uneasy bedfellows 6/20/2009 Independent: "Now for the very latest on the fantasy circuit. The cruel "Iranian" cops aren't Iranian at all. They are members of Lebanon's Hizbollah militia. I've had this one from two reporters, three phone callers (one from Lebanon) and a British politician. I've tried to talk to the cops. They cannot understand Arabic. They don't even look like Arabs, let alone Lebanese. The reality is that many of these street thugs have been brought in from Baluch areas and Zobal province, close to the Afghan border. Even more are Iranian Azeris. Their accents sound as strange to Tehranis as would a Belfast accent to a Cornishman hearing it for the first time."

Preparing the Battlefield - The Bush Administration steps up its secret moves against Iran - by Seymour M. Hersh 6/20/2009 New Yorker: published 7/08

Iranian protesters defy ban, clash with police in streets 6/20/2009 Raw Story: "Members of the Basij Islamic militia, which has been at the forefront of the regime’s efforts to face down a week of protests against official results giving hardline incumbent Mahmoud Ahmadinejad a second four-year term, were again out in force. However, protestors were catching Basijis on motorbikes and beating them, a witness said."

New Tricks to Confront State Power - What the Left Should be Learning From Iran By AL GIORDANO 6/19/2009 Counterpunch: "There are those who really seem to believe that the three million plus people in the streets are merely dupes of the manipulation of destabilization plans hatched in Washington or Tel Aviv. The latter claim is confounded by the words of Israeli defense minister Ehud Barak, who said yesterday, "We should not be confused about Mousavi - these people are fundamentalist Muslims," and those of Israeli Mossad chief Meir Dagan, who joins the neocon chorus in pooh-poohing the popular revolt as insignificant: "The riots are taking place only in Teheran and one additional region. They won't last for long." That reeks of wishful thinking and reveals that Israel's government, for one, wants Ahmadinejad to survive the tumult."

From Mossadegh to Ahmadinejad - The CIA and the Iranian experiment 6/19/2009 VoltaireNet: "First, SMS were sent during the night of the counting of the votes, according to which the Guardian Council of the Constitution (equivalent to a constitutional court) had informed Mir-Hossein Mousavi of his victory. After that, the announcing of the official results — the re-election of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad with 64 % of cast votes — seemed like a huge fraud. However, three days earlier, M. Mousavi and his friends were considering a massive victory of M. Ahmadinejad as certain and were trying to explain it by unbalanced campaigns. Indeed the ex president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani was detailing his grievances in an open letter. The US polling institutes in Iran were predicting a 20 points lead for M. Ahmadinejad over M. Mousavi. M. Mousavi victory never seemed possible, even if it is probable that some fraud accentuated the margin between the two candidates. Secondly, Iranian citizens were selected or volunteered on the Internet to chat on Facebook or to subscribe to Twitter feeds. They received information —true or false— (still via SMS) about the evolution of the political crisis and the ongoing demonstrations. These anonymous news posts were spreading news of gun fights and numerous deaths which to this day have not been confirmed. Because of an unfortunate calendar overlap, Twitter was supposed to suspend its service for a night to allow for some maintenance of its systems. The US State Department intervened to ask them to postpone it. According to the New York Times, these operations contributed to spread defiance in the population."

Why the US Wants to Delegitimize the Iranian Elections - Are You Ready for War with a Demonized Iran? 6/16/2009 Counterpunch: "An independent, objective poll was conducted in Iran by American pollsters prior to the election. The pollsters, Ken Ballen of the nonprofit Center for Public Opinion and Patrick Doherty of the nonprofit New America Foundation, describe their poll results in the June 15 Washington Post. The polling was funded by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and was conducted in Farsi “by a polling company whose work in the region for ABC News and the BBC has received an Emmy award.”*The poll results, the only real information we have at this time, indicate that the election results reflect the will of the Iranian voters. Among the extremely interesting information revealed by the poll is the following: “Many experts are claiming that the margin of victory of incumbent President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was the result of fraud or manipulation, but our nationwide public opinion survey of Iranians three weeks before the vote showed Ahmadinejad leading by a more than 2 to 1 margin -- greater than his actual apparent margin of victory in Friday's election."

What If Ahmadinejad Really Won? 6/15/2009 Consortium News

Tens of Thousands Rally for Mousavi in Tehran 6/9/2009 Juan Cole

Iran arms ship bound for Gaza downed near Sudan 4/27/2009 Haaretz

Mottaki: Iran evaluating Obama message 3/21/2009 Press TV, Iran

Bush saved Iran from Israel’s counter-nuke strike – report 9/26/2008 Russia Today: "The newspaper [the Guardian, UK] argues Bush’s no to Israel’s plans goes against some analysts who believe the Bush administration may use the tensions over Iran’s controversial nuclear programme to provoke a major security crisis and thus help Republican candidate John McCain in the upcoming presidential poll in the U.S."

Dutch sabotage agent recalled from Iran over “impending” US attack 8/30/2008 Debka

Three major US naval strike forces due this week in Persian Gulf 8/11/2008 Debka, Israel

Massive US Naval Armada Heads for Iran 8/8/2008 Truth Seeker: "The build up of naval forces in the Gulf will be one of the largest multi-national naval armadas since the First and Second Gulf Wars. The intent is to create a US/EU naval blockade (which is an Act of War under international law) around Iran (with supporting air and land elements) to prevent the shipment of benzene and certain other refined oil products headed to Iranian ports. Iran has limited domestic oil refining capacity and imports 40% of its benzene. Cutting off benzene and other key products would cripple the Iranian economy. The neo-cons are counting on such a blockade launching a war with Iran."

Iran Issues New Warnings After Defying a Deadline 8/5/2008 NYT: "“Closing the Strait of Hormuz for an unlimited period of time would be very easy,” he was quoted as saying. “The Guards have recently tested a naval weapon which I can say with certainty that the enemy’s ships would not be safe within the range of 300 kilometers,” General Jafari was quoted as saying. “Without any doubt we will send them to the depths of the sea.”General Jafari gave no details about the type of weapon tested, but he said it was Iranian-built and “unique in the world.” "

U.S. sent envoy to Geneva talks to avoid pressure: Chomsky 8/3/2008 Campaign Iran

Why Bush folded on Iran 7/31/2008 Campaign Iran: by Juan Cole

To Provoke War, Cheney Considered Proposal To Dress Up Navy Seals As Iranians And Shoot At Them 7/31/2008 ThinkProgress: "HERSH: There was a dozen ideas proffered about how to trigger a war. The one that interested me the most was why don’t we build — we in our shipyard — build four or five boats that look like Iranian PT boats. Put Navy seals on them with a lot of arms. And next time one of our boats goes to the Straits of Hormuz, start a shoot-up."

The Straits of Hormuz 7/30/2008 Axis of Logic: "Returning to the Straits of Hormuz, some ill-informed persons among legislators in the USA seem to believe that they could, without ruining the economies of many countries with no interest in the quarrels set in motion by the successive Bush Clinton and Bush régimes, block the passage of oil tankers either moving crude oil out of Iran or refined products into Iran. They also seem to ignore that two super-powers have every interest in keeping the oil flowing from Iraq, namely China and Russia, as also has India, which will soon reach super-power status. Admiral Mullen, although a supporter of the dubious Bush régime's tactics (or lack of them) a Chief of the USA military machine, has apparently given these same ignorant legislators some strong hints as to what ruination they could bring upon their own country, but they do not seem to wish to listen. The Iranian government has, to the annoyance of its declared enemies, shown extraordinary diplomatic delicacy in its public declarations regarding the threats being made against it, and we now have the amazing sight of Admiral Mullen, one of their closest servants, warning the Zionists not to try another USS Liberty incident (as they did 41 years ago) to cause the United States to attack Iran."

The Geopolitics of Iran: Holding the Center of a Mountain Fortress 7/24/2008 Iraq War: By George Friedman - "To understand Iran, you must begin by understanding how large it is. Iran is the 17th largest country in world. It measures 1,684,000 square kilometers. That means that its territory is larger than the combined territories of France, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain and Portugal - Western Europe. Iran is the 16th most populous country in the world, with about 70 million people. Its population is larger than the populations of either France or the United Kingdom. Under the current circumstances, it might be useful to benchmark Iran against Iraq or Afghanistan. Iraq is 433,000 square kilometers, with about 25 million people, so Iran is roughly four times as large and three times as populous."

Anti-War Movement Successfully Pushes Back Against Military Confrontation With Iran 7/22/2008 Alternet: "On May 22, a bill was introduced into Congress that effectively called for a blockade of Iran, H. Con. Res. 362. Among other expressions of hostility, the bill calls for: "prohibiting the export to Iran of all refined petroleum products; imposing stringent inspection requirements on all persons, vehicles, ships, planes, trains, and cargo entering or departing Iran ... " This sounded an awful lot like it was calling for a blockade, which is an act of war."

U.S. to station diplomats in Iran for first time since 1979 7/17/2008 Haaretz

Iran Pours Cash Into Afghanistan, Seeking Leverage Against U.S. 7/16/2008 Iraq War

Iran discovers billion-barrel oil field 7/14/2008 News, Australia

Iran Shows Its Cards 7/14/2008 TruthDig: By Scott Ritter - "There can no longer be any doubt about the consequences of any U.S. and/or Israeli military action against Iran. Armchair warriors, pundits and blustering politicians alike have been advocating a pre-emptive military strike against Iran for the purpose of neutralizing its nuclear-related infrastructure, as well as retarding Iran’s ability to train and equip “terrorist” forces on Iranian soil before dispatching them to Iraq or parts unknown. Some, including me, have warned of the folly of such action, and now Iran itself has demonstrated why an attack would be insane."

Seymour Hersh: US Training Jondollah and MEK for Bombing preparation 7/9/2008 Prison Planet: "He explains how the Bush Administration’s policy of “my enemy’s enemy is my friend” has led the US to support the Baluchi organisation Jondollah and the MEK (Mujahideen-e-Khalq a.k.a PMOI), both of which have clear track records of terrorist activities including against the US. He reiterates that the US has been giving arms and cash to the terrorists in the MEK for years and reveals that “most of the [MEK] leaders have been taking our money and cashing it in an awful lot of bank accounts in London.” He also reveals for the first time that the US has trained MEK teams in the state of Nevada and that “they do a lot of crazy stuff inside Iran”.Hersh warns that “we have been moving cruise missiles there for a few months now”, and that the US military is ready. “Our submarines are there, our destroyers are there with cruise missiles aboard, our aircrafts are there, our soldiers are there” to attack Iran within “10 to 12 hours” of the go-ahead order by President Bush, he says, stressing that troops have to go on the ground in Iran in order to destroy Iran’s defensive systems."

The Risk of an Iran War Fireball 7/4/2008 Consortium News: "The U.S. chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the head of the United Nations’ atomic energy commission have both issued warnings about the risks of a military conflict with Iran."

Bush Expands Covert War on Iran 7/1/2008 Consortium News

Bush 'plans Iran air strike by August' 5/28/2008 Asia Times

Bush intends to attack Iran before the end of his term 5/20/2008 Jersualem Post: "US President George W. Bush intends to attack Iran in the upcoming months, before the end of his term, Army Radio quoted officials in Jerusalem as saying Tuesday. The official claimed that a senior member of the president's entourage said during a closed meeting that Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney were of the opinion that military action was called for."

Iran busts CIA terror network 5/18/2008 Tehran Times: but 9/11 happened because they hate our freedom -- "The Intelligence Ministry on Saturday released details of the detection and dismantling of a terrorist network affiliated to the United States. In a coordinated operation on May 7, Iranian intelligence agents arrested the terrorist network’s members, who were identified in Fars, Khuzestan, Gilan, West Azerbaijan, and Tehran provinces, the Intelligence Ministry announcement said. The group’s plans were devised in the U.S., according to the announcement, which added that they had planned to carry out a number of acts such as bombing scientific, educational, and religious centers, shooting people, and making public places in various cities insecure."

How under-the-gun Iran plays it cool 5/13/2008 Asia Times: "To this end, they have little choice, faced with the enmity of the globe's "sole superpower", but to employ a sophisticated counter-encirclement foreign policy. After all, Iran is now completely surrounded by post-September 11 American military bases in Afghanistan, Central Asia, Iraq and the Gulf states. It faces the US military on its Afghan, Iraqi, Pakistani and Persian Gulf borders, and lives with ever-tightening US economic sanctions, as well as a continuing drumbeat of Bush administration threats involving possible air assaults on Iranian nuclear (and probably other) facilities. The Iranian counter-response to sanctions and to its demonization as a rogue or pariah state has been to develop a "Look East" foreign policy that is, in itself, a challenge to American energy hegemony in the Gulf. The policy has been conducted with great skill by Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki, who was educated in Bangalore, India. While focused on massive energy deals with China, India and Pakistan, it looks as well to Africa and Latin America. To the horror of American neo-cons, an intercontinental "axis of evil" air link already exists - a weekly commercial Tehran-Caracas flight via Iran Air."

War With Iran Might Be Closer Than You Think 5/9/2008 American Conservative: "The US demanded that Iran admit that it has been interfering in Iraq and also commit itself to taking steps to end the support of various militant groups. There was also a warning about interfering in Lebanon. The Iranian government reportedly responded quickly, restating its position that it would not discuss the matter until the US ceases its own meddling employing Iranian dissident groups. The perceived Iranian intransigence coupled with the Lebanese situation convinced the White House that some sort of unambiguous signal has to be sent to the Iranian leadership, presumably in the form of cruise missiles. It is to be presumed that the attack will be as “pinpoint” and limited as possible, intended to target only al-Qods and avoid civilian casualties. The decision to proceed with plans for an attack is not final."

U.S. Weighing Readiness for Military Action Against Iran 4/26/2008 WaPo

What or who ordered US army not to interfere in Basra? 4/8/2008 Debka, Israel: Debka is a psyops site with interesting content - "Iraqi prime minister Nouri al-Maliki’s decision to launch 20,000 troops in a crackdown on the Shiite militias rife in southern Iraq took the US army and intelligence commands completely by surprise, DEBKA-Net-Weekly’s military and intelligence sources report. Because the US military command was not approached for assistance, Tehran stepped into the breach with logistical support to supply food, water, ammo, fuel and vehicles for mobility. All the Iranian military and intelligence agents and cells who were working undercover in southern Iraq, behind such fronts as charitable foundations, medical facilities and religious seminaries, were quickly mobilized. Armed with fistfuls of dollars, they hired a fleet of hundreds of trucks and pick-ups to ferry Iraqi government forces fighting to dislodge armed groups between Basra, Kut, Nasiriya, Dawiniya, Al Amara and dozens of small townships and villages. Iranian Revolutionary Guards officers distributed the vehicles among the sectors. They delivered ordnance from Iraqi army stores across the country and food to the soldiers in the South, filling the tanks of Iraqi armored vehicles. Pick-ups rounded up the wounded from the battle arenas and drove them to hospitals. IRGC agents also succored the militias, notably Moqtada Sadr’s Mehdi Army, which government forces were fighting to quell. This militia too depended on the Iranians for supplies, food and vehicles. (The al Qods Brigades are responsible for running Iran’s external terrorist organizations in Iran, Lebanon, the Palestinian Authority and the Gulf.) By keeping its hand on the levers of the two Shiite antagonists, Tehran was able to govern the level and intensity of combat. This control was further exercised by attaching Iranian intelligence officers to the militia chiefs and their commands. Their biggest gun, Brig. Gen. Qassem Suleimani, chief of the IRGC’s al Qods Brigades, was attached to the largest and most powerful militia, the Sadrist Mehdi Army. DEBKA-Net-Weekly’s sources report that the Americans stood by and did not interfere with the Iranian initiative, only ascertaining that they stayed out of four towns, Baghdad, Najef, Karbala, and Samara. The Iranians, understanding they were warned off, treated the four towns as no-go zones and moved around without restraint in the battle arenas."

British fear US commander is beating the drum for Iran strikes 4/5/2008 Telegraph: "A strong statement from General David Petraeus about Iran's intervention in Iraq could set the stage for a US attack on Iranian military facilities, according to a Whitehall assessment. In closely watched testimony in Washington next week, Gen Petraeus will state that the Iranian threat has risen as Tehran has supplied and directed attacks by militia fighters against the Iraqi state and its US allies."

A Conversation with Steven Kinzer - The Folly of Attacking Iran 4/2/2008 Counterpunch: "We can easily foresee some of the terrible consequences of an American attack on Iran. First of all, Iran is the only country in the Muslim Middle East where most people are pro-American. That pro-American sentiment in Iran is a huge strategic asset to the United States. We can build on that for generations to come. We will liquidate that asset in 1 hour if we start to attack. We profess to be great enemies and harsh critics of President Ahmadinejad. He is very unpopular in Iran. He's likely to lose next year's presidential elections. He knows this. There is only one way he can become a hero in Iran and to Muslims all over the world. That is to be attacked by the United States. His provocative rhetoric is kind of calculated to try to bring on this kind of an attack. If we do bomb Iran, we will be strengthening the very regime that we claim to be opposed to. An American attack on Iran would certainly lead Iran to revenge attacks on Israel and on U.S. targets in the Persian Gulf. That will bring Israel into the conflict probably with terrible results, such as bombing attacks on Iran. It would also set off a huge explosion of anti-American violence in Iraq, probably also in Afghanistan. It would greatly destabilize Pakistan, which is probably the last country the U.S. needs to destabilize at this moment. And, if you are afraid today that nuclear scientists in Iran might share their knowledge with terrorists or the Anti-American groups, then just bomb their houses and kill their children and then see how eager they are to participate in anti-American activities."

Tehran says two U.S. Air Force bombers violated Iran air space 4/2/2008 Novosti: "Two U.S. Air Force bombers violated Iranian air space last week, a Tehran-based Arabic language news channel, Al-Alam, said Monday. The channel, referring to a spokesman for Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, said two U.S. bombers crossed the Iranian-Iraqi border Saturday near the city of Abadan, in the province Khuzestan. The spokesman said that it was not the first time military aircraft of the U.S. occupation forces in Iraq have violated Iran's air space, adding that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was on a working visit to the province of Khuzestan at the time of the incident."

Iranian general played key role in Iraq cease-fire 3/30/2008 McClatchy: "Iraqi lawmakers traveled to the Iranian holy city of Qom over the weekend to win the support of the commander of Iran's Qods brigades in persuading Shiite cleric Muqtada al Sadr to order his followers to stop military operations, members of the Iraqi parliament said."

Russian intelligence sees U.S. military buildup on Iran border 3/29/2008 Novosti: ""The latest military intelligence data point to heightened U.S. military preparations for both an air and ground operation against Iran," the official said, adding that the Pentagon has probably not yet made a final decision as to when an attack will be launched. He said the Pentagon is looking for a way to deliver a strike against Iran "that would enable the Americans to bring the country to its knees at minimal cost." He also said the U.S. Naval presence in the Persian Gulf has for the first time in the past four years reached the level that existed shortly before the invasion of Iraq in March 2003. Col.-Gen. Leonid Ivashov, vice president of the Academy of Geopolitical Sciences, said last week that the Pentagon is planning to deliver a massive air strike on Iran's military infrastructure in the near future."

NED's WMD 3/18/2008 Critical Montages: "The National Endowment for Democracy, in its tireless effort to give democracy a bad name, initiated a project called "World Movement for Democracy" in 1999. The project's acronym, WMD, may very well be a bad inside joke among the guardians of the empire today."

Submarine Cables, Subsidiares and Subversion 2/6/2008 I Love Bonnie: "The Iranian Oil Bourse: through the research that I have exhaustingly done over the past few days, this is the one that has struck me as the most likely reason for the damages that have occurred to submarine internet cables."

US Officials Rejected Key Source on '94 Argentina Bombing 1/24/2008 AntiWar: "The Iranian defector who was the source of Argentina's allegation that Iranian officials began planning the Jul. 18, 1994 terror bombing of a Jewish community center at a meeting nearly a year earlier had been dismissed as unreliable by US officials, according to the FBI agent who led the US team assisting the investigation in 1997-98. The FBI agent, James Bernazzani, also says Argentine investigators had no real leads on an Iranian link to the bombing when his team was in Argentina. Three top officials in the US Embassy in Buenos Aires at the time – including Ambassador James Cheek – have confirmed the absence of evidence linking Iran to the bombing, which killed 85 people and wounded another 300."

Intelligence expert who rewrote book on Iran 12/8/2007 Guardian

US releases nine Iranians in Iraq 11/9/2007 BBC: "Two of those freed on Friday were among five Iranian officials detained by US forces in an "intelligence-driven raid" on an office in the same building as the Iranian consulate in the Kurdish city of Irbil in January. Their detention has been the subject of intense protests by the Iranian government and lobbying by Iraqi authorities."

Iran: Dissidents Debate Merits Of U.S. Democracy Aid 11/2/2007 Global Security: "There is a growing debate, inside and outside Iran, about whether millions of dollars in U.S. pro-democracy aid to Iranian dissidents is helping to build the foundations of civil society -- or giving the regime in Tehran an excuse to crack down even harder on dissident students, journalists, and other activists."

52% of Americans support military strike against Iran 10/31/2007 Yomiuri: "The poll found 53 percent of Americans believe it is likely the United States will be involved in a military strike against Iran before the November 2008 presidential election. The nationwide telephone survey, conducted by polling firm Zogby International, found 52 percent of U.S. adults interviewed would support such a strike."

Iran navy in suicide attack pledge 10/29/2007 CNN

Secret move to upgrade air base for Iran attack plans 10/29/2007 The Herald, UK: "The US is secretly upgrading special stealth bomber hangars on the British island protectorate of Diego Garcia in the Indian Ocean in preparation for strikes on Iran's nuclear facilities, according to military sources. The improvement of the B1 Spirit jet infrastructure coincides with an "urgent operational need" request for £44m to fit racks to the long-range aircraft. That would allow them to carry experimental 15-ton Massive Ordnance Penetrator (MOP) bombs designed to smash underground bunkers buried as much as 200ft beneath the surface through reinforced concrete."

Iran steps up preparations for US war 10/28/2007 Telegraph, UK: "Western diplomats have also been alarmed by the appointment of General Mohammad Ali Jafari, who took part in the storming of the US Embassy in Teheran in 1979, as head of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, one of the most powerful institutions in Iran. A Pentagon adviser compared him to the US general in charge of forces in Iraq. "He is the Iranian Petraeus. He has studied counter-insurgency warfare." CIA and Pentagon analysts are fearful that Gen Jafari's views are reflected among the other senior appointments made by Mr Ahmadinejad. He has declared his wish to identify "martyrdom-seeking individuals in society" and warned: "Each of our suicide volunteers equals a nuclear bomb.""

'War on terror' is now war on Iran 10/27/2007 Asia Times: "Even well-positioned Iranians cannot clearly distinguish who is manipulating whom in the wide net involving the Supreme Leader, the IRGC, the fervent bassiji masses and business and national security interests. By branding the IRGC as terrorist, Washington has in fact declared war on the Iranian power elite. One can imagine what would happen if any developing country branded the US industrial-military complex as "terrorists" - and any number of countries would have plenty of reasons to do so. By stretching its "war on terror" logic to actually naming names, the Bush administration has boxed itself into no other option than regime change in Iran."

Something to consider before attacking 10/27/2007 Daily Star, Lebanon: "This is what ordinary Arabs, Iranians and other Middle Easterners see when they hear about American plans possibly to attack Iran. This is not because people in the Middle East have fertile imaginations, but rather because this is the actual history that they have experienced for the past century at the hands of once colonial masters who have now turned into post-colonial and neo-colonial nightmares. They see America's "global war on terror" as a frightening renewal and continuation of foreign threats and predatory intrusions at the hands of powerful Western armies and political demagogues."

White House Leak: Cheney's Plan for Iran Attack Starts With Israeli Missile Strike 10/26/2007 Der Spiegel

The Secret History of the Impending War with Iran That the White House Doesn't Want You to Know 10/20/2007 Esquire: "Months before September 11, Mann had been negotiating with the Iranian diplomat at the UN. After the attacks, the meetings continued, sometimes alone and sometimes with their Russian counterpart sitting in. Soon they traded the conference room for the Delegates' Lounge, an airy two-story bar with ashtrays for all the foreigners who were used to smoking indoors. One day, up on the second floor where the windows overlooked the East River, the diplomat told her that Iran was ready to cooperate unconditionally, a phrase that had seismic diplomatic implications. Unconditional talks are what the U.S. had been demanding as a precondition to any official diplomatic contact between the U.S. and Iran. And it would be the first chance since the Islamic revolution for any kind of rapprochement. "It was revolutionary," Mann says. "It could have changed the world." A few weeks later, after signing on to Condoleezza Rice's staff as the new Iran expert in the National Security Council, Mann flew to Europe with Ryan Crocker -- then a deputy assistant secretary of state -- to hold talks with a team of Iranian diplomats. Meeting in a light-filled conference room at the old UN building in Geneva, they hammered out plans for Iranian help in the war against the Taliban. The Iranians agreed to provide assistance if any American was shot down near their territory, agreed to let the U.S. send food in through their border, and even agreed to restrain some "really bad Afghanis," like a rabidly anti-American warlord named Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, quietly putting him under house arrest in Tehran. These were significant concessions. At the same time, special envoy James Dobbins was having very public and warm discussions in Bonn with the Iranian deputy foreign minister as they worked together to set up a new government for Afghanistan. And the Iranians seemed eager to help in more tactical ways as well. They had intimate knowledge of Taliban strategic capabilities and they wanted to share it with the Americans. One day during the U.S. bombing campaign, Mann and her Iranian counterparts were sitting around the wooden conference table speculating about the future Afghani constitution. Suddenly the Iranian who knew so much about intelligence matters started pounding on the table. "Enough of that!" he shouted, unfurling a map of Afghanistan. Here was a place the Americans needed to bomb. And here, and here, he angrily jabbed his finger at the map. Leverett spent those days in his office at the State Department building, watching the revolution in the Middle East and coming up with plans on how to capture the lightning. Suddenly countries like Syria and Libya and Sudan and Iran were coming forward with offers of help, which raised a vital question -- should they stay on the same enemies list as North Korea and Iraq, or could there be a new slot for "friendly" sponsors of terror? As a CIA analyst, Leverett had come to the view that Middle Eastern terrorism was more tactical than religious. Syria wanted the Golan Heights back and didn't have the military strength to put up a serious fight against Israel, so it relied on "asymmetrical methods." Accepting this idea meant that nations like Syria weren't locked in a fanatic mind-set, that they could evolve to use new methods, so Leverett told Powell to seize the moment and draw up a "road map" to peace for the problem countries of the Middle East -- expel your terrorist groups and stop trying to develop weapons of mass destruction, and we will take you off the sponsors-of-terrorism list and start a new era of cooperation."

US forces torture Press TV reporter 10/8/2007 Press TV, Iran: "The Afghan journalist was rendered unconscious by a taser and taken to a US base where the officers in charge of interrogating him, forced him to watch all the reports he had made for Press TV, while "shocking him on an electric chair and beating him on the head". He was threatened that if he continued to work for Press TV, his family would also suffer the consequences. Fayez repeatedly told his interrogators that he was a freelance journalist with no political ties to any foreign country. Khurshid was released after an 18 hour detention. Fayez had said in his latest report that the presence of the American forces in Afghanistan was the main reason for instability in the country and that Afghan authorities were instructed by foreign political forces to prevent the nation from chanting slogans against the US and Israel."

Iran, Syria sign $1-bln gas deal 10/4/2007 AFP: "State television said that the exports are set to start in 2009, and will be worth $1 billion to Iran annually. Nozari said the gas would be supplied to Syria via its northern neighbor Turkey, which already receives Iranian gas through a pipeline linking the northern city of Tabriz and Ankara. Iran has the world's second-largest gas reserves after Russia, but, until now, has remained a relatively-minor player in the global export market. It also faces huge consumption demands from its growing population at home. The Islamic republic supplies several-billion cubic meters of gas to Turkey annually, and has signed a preliminary deal with Ankara for exporting gas into Europe - a move bitterly criticized by the United States. Supplies to Turkey have, on occasion, been hit by wrangling about price and quality, the high demand in Iran, as well as sporadic attacks on the pipeline blamed on Kurdish militants."

Venezuela defends Iran, blasts 'hypocritical' US policy on terror 10/2/2007 AFP: "Venezuelan Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro on Tuesday used the General Assembly podium here to defend Iran and to blast Washington's "hypocritical" policy on terrorism. He slammed the escalating international media campaign "aimed at demonizing the Iranian people and government" and called for an end "to the madness of the war in Iraq." Pointing to the "threatening statements against the peace of the people of Iran," he said it was time "to stop this campaign of demonization..., to build alliances to stop the war-mongering madness of the elites who rule the United States.""

Shifting Targets - The Administration’s plan for Iran by Seymour M. Hersh 10/1/2007 New Yorker: "Now the emphasis is on “surgical” strikes on Revolutionary Guard Corps facilities in Tehran and elsewhere, which, the Administration claims, have been the source of attacks on Americans in Iraq. What had been presented primarily as a counter-proliferation mission has been reconceived as counterterrorism. The shift in targeting reflects three developments. First, the President and his senior advisers have concluded that their campaign to convince the American public that Iran poses an imminent nuclear threat has failed (unlike a similar campaign before the Iraq war), and that as a result there is not enough popular support for a major bombing campaign. The second development is that the White House has come to terms, in private, with the general consensus of the American intelligence community that Iran is at least five years away from obtaining a bomb. And, finally, there has been a growing recognition in Washington and throughout the Middle East that Iran is emerging as the geopolitical winner of the war in Iraq."

The Whispers of War 10/1/2007 Newsweek

US to reward Iran for ending Iraq arms supply 10/1/2007 Telegraph: "Rear Admiral Mark Fox, a coalition spokesman, announced that "several" Misagh-1 Iranian-made missiles had been seized by US troops. It was the latest in a series of such revelations in the last two weeks. He said: "We've said that we've found these things, we've seen them employed. That's significant in its own right." An aide to Prime Minister Maliki appeared to confirm the Iraqi leader had secured concessions from Iran's hardline President Ahmadinejad. "The prime minister has been saying recently that the Iranians have been giving him strong promises," the official said. "The results of these promises are starting to be felt as far as the trafficking of weapons is concerned." "

Stranger Than Strangelove 9/29/2007 AntiWar: "Now, the Post authoritatively reports that the B-52 was not "certified" to carry nuclear weapons. If true, that’s important. According to the Post, the 21-foot missiles – even when in storage – were already mounted on pylons, six apiece in clusters of three, "for quick mounting to the wings of a B-52." That presumably would mean that this particular non-certified B-52 was not capable of being mated – electrically and mechanically – to the presumably unique pylon for carrying AGM-129s, much less capable of arming, targeting and launching the "dial-a-yield" nuke-armed AGM-129. According to the Post, a year ago SecDef Rumsfeld had ordered all 400 nuke-armed AGM-129s to be retired and as of August more than 200 already had been. The by-then routine procedure called for the nuke warhead to be removed in the Minot Special Weapons Storage facility and replaced with a dummy warhead of the same size and weight. But, according to the Post, the loading of the B-52 at Minot took eight hours because of unusual trouble attaching the pylon on the right side of the plane -- the one with the dummy warheads. Unusual trouble attaching the pylon on which the six missiles containing dummy warheads were mounted? No trouble at all attaching the pylon – on which the six missiles containing "dial-a-yield" nukes were mounted – to a B-52 that was not certified (or equipped) to carry, arm and launch AGM-129s?"

Treacherous Alliance - Readings in the Age of Empire 9/28/2007 AntiWar: "Although Iran is an Islamic state, it is not an Arab country. As such, Tehran has more in common with Israel than commonly supposed. The relationship between the two was always complicated, often strained, and rarely public, but the two nations cooperated until the fall of the Shah in 1979. The Iranian revolution disrupted relations, but did not end contact. Radical was the rhetoric of the Ayatollah Khomeini, but practical were his policies. Notes Parsi: "In early 1980s, only months after the eruption of the hostage crisis, Ahmed Kashani, the youngest son of Grand Ayatollah Abol Qassem Kashani, who had played a key role in the nationalization of the Iranian oil industry in 1951, visited Israel – most likely the first Iranian to do so after the revolution – to discuss arms sales and military cooperation against Iraq's nuclear program at Osirak." ...Unfortunately, Washington lost no opportunity to miss an opportunity to open a dialogue with Tehran. The U.S. refused to invite Iran to the Madrid summit on Israel's relations with Arab states and the Palestinians. This act of hubris, by which, in Parsi's words, "Washington failed to appreciate Iran's pragmatism, in particular Tehran's new position on Israel, in which [Iranian President Hashemi] Rafsanjani had declared that Iran would agree to any solution acceptable to the Palestinians," cost America greatly. It "strengthened the hands of Iranian rejectionists" and led Tehran "to seriously reach out to rejectionist Palestinian groups, in spite of the Shia-Sunni divide and their enmity dating back to the Iraq-Iran war." As Israeli policy shifted, so did Israel's view of U.S.-Iranian relations. It's an astonishing tale, and one that raises as many questions about Washington's relations with Israel as with Iran. Explains Parsi: "The Israeli-U.S.-Iranian triangle had shifted remarkably in just a few years. In the 1980s, Israel was the unlikely defender of and apologist for Iran in Washington, taking great risks to pressure the Reagan administration to open up channels of communication with Iran. Now, Israel did the opposite. Israel wanted the United States to put Iran under economic and political siege.""

Attack on Iran Said To Be Imminent 9/28/2007 NY Sun

Berlin Says US and France Guilty of Hypocrisy 9/24/2007 Spiegel: "German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier is to oppose French calls for European Union sanctions against Iran and is planning to back up his case with evidence of French and American hypocrisy over sanctions against Iran. According to information obtained by SPIEGEL, the economics department of the German Foreign Ministry has collected revealing data which Steinmeier will use to back up his argument against EU sanctions. Several French companies in the automobile, energy and financial sectors -- including Peugeot, Renault, Total, BNP Paribas and Societé Générale -- have hardly reduced the level of business they do with Iran, according to the Foreign Ministry data. German exports to Iran, in contrast, have dramatically declined. Even more explosive is the data that reveals US hypocrisy over sanctions. The German Foreign Ministry accuses American firms of bypassing the boycott against Iran, which has been in place since 1979, by creating front companies in Dubai to carry out their business. German politicians have long internally accused the United States of knowingly tolerating the practice."

Iran Draws Up Plans to Bomb Israel 9/19/2007 AP: "Alavi also warned that Israel was within Iran's medium-range missiles and its fighter bombers, while maintaining that Israel was not strong enough to launch an aerial attack against Iran. "The whole territory of this regime is within the range of our missiles. Moreover, we can attack their territory with our fighter bombers as a response to any attack," the general said. An upgraded version of Iran's Shahab-3 missile has a range of 1,200 miles capable of reaching Israel and carrying a nuclear warhead. Alavi said Iran's radar bases were monitoring activities at the country's borders around the clock and boasted that it had the capability to confront U.S. cruise missiles. "One of the issues enemies make publicity about is their cruise missiles. Now, we possess the necessary systems to confront them (cruise missiles)," Alavi was quoted as saying."

Russia Says U.S. Attack on Iran Would Be Catastrophic 9/18/2007 Bloomberg: "Dan Plesch, director of the Center for International Studies and Diplomacy at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London, said a preemptive strike would damage U.S. relations across the region. ``If they do it, they'll destroy everything,'' he said in an interview in London. ``You can destroy Tehran and you will lose Turkey and Egypt, in terms of political action. The U.S. and the Europeans should take a regional approach with a UN Security Council resolution and get Israel involved.'' "

Bush setting America up for war with Iran 9/16/2007 Telegraph

Fox analyst: Germany's actions leave us 'no choice' but to bomb Iran 9/12/2007 Global Research

U.S. Staging Nukes for Iran? 9/8/2007 Global Research: "Barksdale Air Force Base is being used as a jumping off point for Middle East operations. Gee, why would we want cruise missile nukes at Barksdale Air Force Base. Can’t imagine we would need to use them in Iraq. Why would we want to preposition nuclear weapons at a base conducting Middle East operations? His final point was to observe that someone on the inside obviously leaked the info that the planes were carrying nukes. A B-52 landing at Barksdale is a non-event. A B-52 landing with nukes. That is something else. Now maybe there is an innocent explanation for this? I can’t think of one. What is certain is that the pilots of this plane did not just make a last minute decision to strap on some nukes and take them for a joy ride."

Will President Bush bomb Iran? 9/2/2007 Telegraph, UK: "In the meantime, administration officials are studying the lessons of the recent war game, which was set up to devise a way of weathering an economic storm created by war with Iran. Computer modelling found that if Iran closed the Straits of Hormuz, it would nearly double the world price of oil, knock $161 billion off American GDP in a single quarter, cost one million jobs and slash disposable income by $260 billion a quarter. The war gamers advocated deploying American oil reserves - good for 60 days - using military force to break the blockade (two US aircraft carrier groups and half of America's 277 warships are already stationed close to Iran), opening up oil development in Alaska, and ending import tariffs on ethanol fuel. If the government also subsidised fuel for poorer Americans, the war-gamers concluded, it would mitigate the financial consequences of a conflict. The Heritage report concludes: "The results were impressive. The policy recommendations eliminated virtually all of the negative outcomes from the blockade.""

Pentagon ‘three-day blitz’ plan for Iran 9/2/2007 Times Magazine: "THE Pentagon has drawn up plans for massive airstrikes against 1,200 targets in Iran, designed to annihilate the Iranians’ military capability in three days, according to a national security expert. Alexis Debat, director of terrorism and national security at the Nixon Center, said last week that US military planners were not preparing for “pinprick strikes” against Iran’s nuclear facilities. “They’re about taking out the entire Iranian military,” he said."

Study: US preparing 'massive' military attack against Iran 8/28/2007 Raw Story: "The United States has the capacity for and may be prepared to launch without warning a massive assault on Iranian uranium enrichment facilities, as well as government buildings and infrastructure, using long-range bombers and missiles, according to a new analysis."

Considering a War with Iran 8/28/2007 School of Oriental and African Studies, London: text of the report

United States trying to derail nuclear talks, says Iran 8/27/2007 The News, Pakistan: "Iran accused the United States on Sunday of trying to derail its talks with the UN nuclear watchdog that aim to defuse a row over Tehran’s atomic plans, which Washington says are ultimately directed at making bombs. Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) held two-days of talks last week about a plan for more transparency. A senior IAEA official described their agreement as a “milestone” but Washington said the deal had “real limitations”. “There was nothing else to be expected from America other than this (response) ... The trend (of talks) between Iran and the agency was successful, other countries welcomed it as well. Americans are making efforts to harm this trend,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Mohammad Ali Hosseini said."

Iran seeks to tame wild border province 8/26/2007 AFP: "The province has a well-earned reputation for instability and has been the scene of kidnappings, shootouts and bomb attacks in the past years blamed both on rebel groups and armed drug traffickers. In a bid to increase security through economic development, Ahmadinejad has allocated 50 trillion rials (over five billion dollars) to Sistan-Baluchestan for infrastructure projects in the two years since he came to power. "This province has a lot of unexplored potential," provincial governor Habibollah Dahmardeh told an AFP correspondent. "But it has many problems, most notably water shortages and drugs."

Former CIA officer says U.S ready to strike Iran within 6 months 8/22/2007 Global Research

Kurds flee homes as Iran shells villages in Iraq 8/20/2007 Guardian: "Jabar Yawar, a deputy minister in the Kurdistan regional government, said four days of intermittent shelling by Iranian forces had hit mountain villages high up on the Iraqi side of the border, wounding two women, destroying livestock and property, and displacing about 1,000 people from their homes. Mr Yawer said there had also been intense fighting on the Iraqi border between Iranian forces and guerrillas of the Kurdistan Free Life Party (PJAK), an armed Iranian Kurdish group that is stepping up its campaign for Kurdish rights against the theocratic regime in Tehran. On Saturday the Iranian news agency Mehr said an Iranian army helicopter which crashed killing six Republican Guard members had been engaged in a military operation against PJAK. Iranian officials said the helicopter had crashed into the side of a mountain during bad weather in northern Iraq. PJAK sources said the helicopter had been destroyed after it attempted to land in a clearing mined by guerrillas. The PJAK sources claimed its guerrillas had also killed at least five other Iranian soldiers, and a local pro-regime chief, Hussein Bapir… Analysts believe PJAK is the fastest growing armed resistance group in Iran. As well as the 3,000 or so members under arms in the mountains, it also claims tens of thousands of followers in secret cells in Iranian Kurdistan. Its campaigning on women's rights has struck a chord with young Iranian Kurdish women. The group says 45% of its fighters are female. Iranian authorities regard the group as a terrorist outfit being sponsored and armed by the US to increase pressure on Iran. On a recent visit to PJAK camps in the Qandil mountains the Guardian saw no evidence of American weaponry. The majority of its fighters toted Soviet-era Kalashnikovs. In an interview Biryar Gabar, a member of the leadership committee, said the group had no relations with the Americans, but was "open to any group that shares our ideals of a free federal democratic and secular Iran.""

Prelude to an Attack on Iran 8/18/2007 Time Magazine: "Strengthening the Administration's case for a strike on Iran, there's a belief among neo-cons that the IRGC is the one obstacle to democratic and a friendly Iran. They believe that if we were to get rid of the IRGC, the clerics would fall, and our thirty-years war with Iran over. It's another neo-con delusion, but still it informs White House thinking. And what do we do if just the opposite happens — a strike on Iran unifies Iranians behind the regime? An Administration official told me it's not even a consideration. "IRGC IED's are a casus belli for this administration. There will be an attack on Iran."" — [Author Robert Baer, a former CIA field officer assigned to the Middle East, is TIME.com's intelligence columnist and the author of See No Evil and, most recently, the novel Blow the House Down]

Ex-CIA officer Slams US Allegations against Iran as Sham - US Creating False pretexts for Another War 7/29/2007 Global Research: "He emphasised both the fact of Iranians' helpfulness in Iraq, in terms of pushing for greater stability, and also their help and cooperation in Afghanistan, as well as the reality of the deep hostilities between Shiia Iran and Sunni extremism of AlQaeda. Giraldi recalled the major attack against the Iranian consulate general in Afghanistan by the Taliban, a close ally of AlQaeda, in which 11 Iranian diplomats were killed, and the regular AlQaeda violent attacks against Shiia population in Iraq, and concluded that a Shiia Iranian-AlQaeda alliance was not a plausible possibility. He described the recent New York Sun's allegation [2] that AlQaeda prisoners in Iran led terrorist operations inside Iraq under the advice of the Iranian government, as one of many propaganda pieces making a case for war. He said how in 2003, the Iranian government, through the Swiss embassy, had offered to hand over the six AlQaeda prisoners kept in Iran, which includes Osama Bin Laden's son, in exchange for the US ceasing its support for the MEK, and how this offer was rejected by the US. He said of the MEK that it was sheltered and armed by Saddam against Iran, and now supported and armed by Pentagon against Iran. Highlighting what he called American "ultimate hypocrisy", Giraldi explained how the US government is supporting terrorist groups and ethnic division in Iran and charging the Iranians in Iraq for what the US was doing in Iran itself and with a lot more evidence. Giraldi talked of US's support for Jundollah which he described as a Sunni Baluchi separatist group in eastern Iran that has launched deadly terrorist attacks inside Iran. He also spoke of US support for separatists amongst the Arab minority which is closer to the border with Iraq. Giraldi repeated the alarm call he first made in his revelations in the American Conservative Magazine in 2005 that Dick Cheney, who has no authority under the constitution, had ordered the air force to draw up plans for air strike against Iran that even included the use of nuclear weapons. He said he thought there was a lot of evidence since then to suggest that nuclear weapons are still very much on the table and named Republican Senators such as McCain, Gilliani and Romney who had not "flinched at all" in the debate about the prospect of using nuclear weapons against Iran."

Iran Says Shift Away From Dollar Economically Motivated 7/16/2007 Down Jones

Cheney pushes Bush to act on Iran 7/16/2007 Guardian: "The balance in the internal White House debate over Iran has shifted back in favour of military action before President George Bush leaves office in 18 months, the Guardian has learned. The shift follows an internal review involving the White House, the Pentagon and the state department over the last month. Although the Bush administration is in deep trouble over Iraq, it remains focused on Iran. A well-placed source in Washington said: "Bush is not going to leave office with Iran still in limbo.""

Iran demands Japan's oil payments in yen, not US dollars 7/13/2007 Global Research

Confronting Joe Lieberman to Stop a War With Iran 6/18/2007 Common Dreams

On the Escalator to War With Iran by Patrick J. Buchanan 6/15/2007 AntiWar: "As many as 200 American soldiers" may have been killed by Iranians or Iranian-trained insurgents, Lieberman claimed. Petraeus and Nick Burns would not be making these charges publicly if the White House did not want them made publicly. What is going on? The most logical explanation is that the White House is providing advance justification for air strikes on camps of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard that are allegedly providing training for and transferring weapons to Afghan and Iraqi insurgents. And if the United States conducts those strikes, Iranians will unite around Ahmadinejad, and Tehran will order retaliatory strikes against U.S. targets in Iraq and perhaps across the Middle East. President Bush will then have his casus belli to take out Natanz and all the other Iranian nuclear facilities, as the Israelis and the neocons have been demanding that he do. This would mean a third Middle Eastern war for America, with a nation three times as large and populous as Iraq. Perhaps it is time to begin constructing a new wing on Walter Reed."

Iran threatens Gulf blitz if US hits nuclear plants 6/10/2007 London Times: "Admiral Ali Shamkhani, a senior defence adviser to the supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, warned that Gulf states providing the US with military cooperation would be the key targets of a barrage of ballistic missiles. Shamkhani told the US journal Defense News that missiles would be launched not only at US military bases but also at strategic targets such as oil refineries and power stations. Qatar, Bahrain and Oman all host important US bases and British forces are based in all three countries. Any Iranian attack would be bound to draw in the other Gulf Cooperation Council states: Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait."

Iran joins Sunnis to banish US 5/23/2007 Australian

Commander's Veto Sank Threatening Gulf Buildup 5/16/2007 AntiWar

Report: Saudis, US sponsoring covert action against Iran 5/7/2007 Raw Story: "People focus altogether on the nuclear facilities and how difficult they would be to take out," he quotes former Secretary of State George Shultz as saying. "But it’s not difficult for somebody to sabotage those refineries."

Iran: A careful look before a US leap 5/5/2007 Asia Times, Hong Kong: "Iran's intelligence-run cells are believed to have links with a network of contacts across three continents. Sabotage and subversion experts from Iran are believed to be cooperating with both Cuba and Venezuela for operations in Washington's own back yard. Iran has also apparently established similar cells and cooperation in Sudan, Somalia and Yemen. Significantly, in European Muslim areas such as Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kosovo and Chechnya, a highly successful relationship with the largely Sunni al-Qaeda has developed. Shi'ites and Sunnis have apparently buried their religious differences in favor of finding common cause against a joint enemy, the United States."

The Iran War Theater's "Northern Front": Azerbaijan and the US Sponsored War on Iran 4/13/2007 Global Research

US offered to scare Iran: report 4/8/2007 Herald Sun, Australia: "THE US offered to mount aggressive air patrols over Iranian bases during the country's stand-off with Britain, UK media reported today. Citing unnamed diplomatic sources, The Guardian newspaper said Pentagon officials offered a series of military options that Britain rejected. Britain reportedly told the US to keep out of the affair and instead tone down armed forces activity in the Gulf region… "If this had been between Iranian and American soldiers, it could have been the beginning of an accidental war," said a senior Iranian source. The source claimed British forces had illegally entered Iranian waters three times in three months before the capture, which was decided upon by a regional commander."

Iran: The threat of a nuclear war by Léonid Ivashov 4/7/2007 Voltaire Net: [Author is former Chief of Staff, Russian Federation] "The activities having consequences of global proportions can only be intended to deal with a global problem. This problem itself is by no means something secret - it is the possibility of a crush of the global financial system based on the US dollar. Currently the mass of the US currency exceeds the total worth of the US assets by more than a factor of ten. Everything in the US - the industry, the buildings, the high-tech, and so on - has been mortgaged more than ten times all over the world. A debt of such proportions will never be repaid - it can only be relieved. ... The solution is already in the plans. The US has nothing to offer the rest of the world to save the declining dollar except for military operations like the ones in Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, and Iraq. But even these local conflicts only yield short-term effects. Something a lot greater is needed, and the need is urgent. The moment is drawing closer when the financial crisis will make the world realize that all of the US assets, all of its industrial, technological, and other potentials do not rightfully belong to the country. Then, it all must be confiscated to compensate the victims, and the rights of ownership of everything bought for dollars all over the world - everything drawn from the wealth of various nations - are to be revised. What might cause the force major event of the required scale? Everything seems to indicate that Israel will be sacrificed. Its involvement in a war with Iran - especially in a nuclear war - is bound to trigger a global catastrophe. The statehoods of Israel and Iran are based on the countries’ official religions. A military conflict between Israel and Iran will immediately evolve into a religious one, a conflict between Judaism and Islam. Due to the presence of numerous Jewish and Muslim populations in the developed countries, this would make a global bloodbath inevitable. All of the active forces of most of the countries of the world would end up fighting, with almost no room for neutrality left. Judging by the increasingly massive acquisitions of the residential housing for the Israeli citizens, especially in Russia and Ukraine, a lot of people already have an idea of what the future holds. However, it is hard to imagine a quiet heaven where one might hide from the coming doom. Forecasts of the territorial distribution of the fighting, the quantities and the efficiency of the armaments involved, the profound character of the underlying roots of the conflict and the severity of the religious strife all leave no doubt that this clash will be in all respects much more nightmarish than WWII."

British Marines Captured by Iran: Fake Maritime Boundaries 3/29/2007 Global Research

ISOG (Iran Syria Policy and Operations Group) In a Nutshell 3/18/2007 Enisen

Iran-Syria Operations Group 3/18/2007 Sourcewatch

Iran to hit back at US ‘kidnaps’ 3/18/2007 Times, London: "“This is no longer a coincidence, but rather an orchestrated operation to shake the higher echelons of the Revolutionary Guard,” said an Israeli source. Other members of the Quds Force are said to have been seized in Irbil, in the Kurdish area of northern Iraq, by US special forces.“The capture of Quds members in Irbil was essential for our understanding of Iranian activity in Iraq,” said an American official with knowledge of the operation. One theory circulating in Israel is that a US taskforce known as the Iran Syria Policy and Operations Group (ISOG) is coordinating the campaign to take Revolutionary Guard commanders. The Iranians have also accused the United States of being behind an attack on Revolutionary Guards in Iran last month in which at least 17 were killed."

The Redirection - Is the Administration’s new policy benefitting our enemies in the war on terrorism? 3/5/2007 New Yorker: by Seymour Hersh

THE REDIRECTION - Is the Administration’s new policy benefitting our enemies in the war on terrorism? by SEYMOUR M. HERSH 2/26/2007 New Yorker: "The key players behind the redirection are Vice-President Dick Cheney, the deputy national-security adviser Elliott Abrams, the departing Ambassador to Iraq (and nominee for United Nations Ambassador), Zalmay Khalilzad, and Prince Bandar bin Sultan, the Saudi national-security adviser. While Rice has been deeply involved in shaping the public policy, former and current officials said that the clandestine side has been guided by Cheney. (Cheney’s office and the White House declined to comment for this story; the Pentagon did not respond to specific queries but said, “The United States is not planning to go to war with Iran.”)The policy shift has brought Saudi Arabia and Israel into a new strategic embrace, largely because both countries see Iran as an existential threat. They have been involved in direct talks, and the Saudis, who believe that greater stability in Israel and Palestine will give Iran less leverage in the region, have become more involved in Arab-Israeli negotiations."

US generals ‘will quit’ if Bush orders Iran attack 2/25/2007 Sunday Times: "SOME of America’s most senior military commanders are prepared to resign if the White House orders a military strike against Iran, according to highly placed defence and intelligence sources. Tension in the Gulf region has raised fears that an attack on Iran is becoming increasingly likely before President George Bush leaves office. The Sunday Times has learnt that up to five generals and admirals are willing to resign rather than approve what they consider would be a reckless attack."

US funds terror groups to sow chaos in Iran 2/25/2007 Telegraph

Iran - Ready to attack 2/19/2007 New Statesman: "Any US general planning to attack Iran can now assume that at least 10,000 targets can be hit in a single raid, with warplanes flying from the US or Diego Garcia. In the past year, unlimited funding for military technology has taken "smart bombs" to a new level. New "bunker-busting" conventional bombs weigh only 250lb. According to Boeing, the GBU-39 small-diameter bomb "quadruples" the firepower of US warplanes, compared to those in use even as recently as 2003. A single stealth or B-52 bomber can now attack between 150 and 300 individual points to within a metre of accuracy using the global positioning system. With little military effort, the US air force can hit the last-known position of Iranian military units, political leaders and supposed sites of weapons of mass destruction. One can be sure that, if war comes, George Bush will not want to stand accused of using too little force and allowing Iran to fight back. "Global Strike" means that, without any obvious signal, what was done to Serbia and Lebanon can be done overnight to the whole of Iran."

Percussion bomb explodes in Iranian city where 11 Revolutionary Guards killed 2/17/2007 Raw Story: "The electricity in the residential complex was cut following the explosion and the clashes, the agency said, without giving a reason. It was not clear if all the suspected militants were arrested. It has a substantial Baluch community, a minority Sunni Muslim group. According to unconfirmed website reports, Wednesday's attack was claimed by a shadowy Sunni militant group, Jundallah, which has been blamed for a string of armed incidents in the volatile province."

Iran May Have Trained Attackers That Killed 5 American Soldiers, U.S. and Iraqis Say 1/31/2007 NYT: "The Karbala operation involved 9 to 12 armed militants and at least five sport utility vehicles, the American military has said. The initial attack on the compound killed one American soldier and damaged three Humvees, the military said. But what has caught the attention of investigators is the way the convoy of S.U.V.’s was able to give the impression that it was American and slip through Iraqi checkpoints unchallenged. An American military official said all possibilities were being explored, with the focus on whom the United States can trust, even among senior Iraqi officials, in the Karbala area."

America ‘poised to strike at Iran’s nuclear sites’ from bases in Bulgaria and Romania 1/28/2007 Sunday Herald

Iran Must Get Ready to Repel a Nuclear Attack by General Leonid Ivashov 1/24/2007 Global Research: "Today, the probability of a US aggression against Iran is extremely high. It does remain unclear, though, whether the US Congress is going to authorize the war. It may take a provocation to eliminate this obstacle (an attack on Israel or the US targets including military bases). The scale of the provocation may be comparable to the 9-11 attack in NY. Then the Congress will certainly say “Yes” to the US President."

Moves Toward War with Iran: We Must Stop This 1/21/2007 Common Dreams: "Once again, the public case for war is bogus. The CIA's best estimate is that Iran could not develop a nuclear weapon for another ten years, assuming it wants to. No evidence that Iran is providing support to Iraqi insurgents has been made public. And now it has been reconfirmed that Vice-President Dick Cheney dismissed an Iranian offer of peace in 2003, with the Iranians offering the same concessions that the White House now claims to be seeking. Iran is not like Iraq was before the 2003 invasion. Iraq had been stripped of any ability to defend itself through war and 12 years of regular bombing and sanctions. (Those sanctions also killed hundreds of thousands of Iraqis by devastating public health infrastructure.) Iran could defend itself. Any attack from the U.S. or Israel would consist of bombing and missile attacks, rather than ground troops. The immediate number of people killed would certainly be in the thousands. Iranian retaliation could increase that number and create economic shockwaves throughout the world."

The Unthinkable: The US- Israeli Nuclear War on Iran Selected Global Research Articles 1/21/2007 Global Research

Did the President Declare "Secret War" Against Syria and Iran? 1/11/2007 Washington Nore: "Washington intelligence, military and foreign policy circles are abuzz today with speculation that the President, yesterday or in recent days, sent a secret Executive Order to the Secretary of Defense and to the Director of the CIA to launch military operations against Syria and Iran."

U.S. Says Captured Iranians Can Be Linked to Attacks 12/27/2006 NYT

Are Bush and Cheney Planning an Early Attack on Iran? Crime of the Century 12/24/2006 Counterpunch

War and Terror: Tehran's Holocaust Conference 12/18/2006 Tinicenter: "Did Ahmadinejad really threaten to wipe out Israel? No more than scientists predicting the melting of the polar ice caps are threatening to melt them themselves. What Ahmadinejad did say was that, "The Zionist regime will be wiped out soon the same way the Soviet Uni0n was" (5) ­ a prediction, not a threat. And since the Soviet Uni0n wasn't wiped out in a hail of nuclear missiles, a storm of terrorist attacks, or an epidemic sparked by biological weapons, it might be safe to conclude that Ahmadinejad expects Israel to collapse through self-inflicted wounds ­ the way the Soviet Uni0n did ­ and not under a barrage of nuclear missiles launched from Tehran. In the Iranian president's view, the days of Israel, as Zionist state, are numbered because it was founded on injustice, and therefore stands on rotten foundations. When the UN carved a Jewish homeland out of someone else's homeland, and without consulting a single Palestinian, it created a Chimera whose existence would always depend on sponsorship by imperialist powers, and unremitting, massive infusions of aid. In other words, Israel has been artificially kept alive from the start."

Hersh: CIA Analysis Finds Iran Not Developing Nuclear Weapons 11/19/2006 AFP

USS Boxer Strike Group, entered the Persian Gulf Thursday, Nov. 9, the largest US landing force to reach this water in a decade 11/10/2006 Debka: "The Boxer Expeditionary Strike Group (BOXESG) now in the US Fifth Fleet area headquartered in Bahrain, consists of Boxer (picture), Amphibious Squadron 5, the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit (Seals), the Coast Guard cutter Midgett and Canadian frigate HMCS Ottawa, as well as the USS Dubuque, USS Comstock, the largest landing craft in the US Navy, USS Bunker Hill and the guided missile destroyers USS Benfold and USS Howard. The Boxer Group has just come from joint maneuvers with the Indian navy in the Arabian Sea opposite the coast of Goa, including large-scale landing practices. The group’s commander, Capt. David Angood said that if “anything important happens in the real-world environment, the task force will deal with it in the most efficient manner.” DEBKAfile’s military sources report that the arrival of Boxer in the Persian Gulf coincided with the USS Iwo Jima Expeditionary Strike Group’s passage through the Suez Canal on its way from the Gulf to the Mediterranean. It is the first time that a US naval strike force is accompanied by a coast guard unit. Its vessels are equipped and their crews trained for rapid rescue and aid missions to damaged ships and wounded crewmen. Their presence in the task force indicates that the Boxer strike group is prepared for Iranian attack by sea, air, submarine, sea-to-sea missiles or depth mines."

The spectacular swarm of sophisticated missiles fired in Iran’s surprise military exercise stuns military planners in the US, Israel and Europe 11/5/2006 Debka: "Our sources reveal that scores of surface missiles – a record for any war games anywhere - were tested simultaneously at a desert testing site some two hours drive from Tehran Thursday, Nov. 2. Precisely planned, the testing went smoothly. Input has not yet come in about the accuracy of their targeting. A senior American missile expert told DEBKAfile that the Iranians demonstrated up-to-date missile-launching technology which the West had not known them to possess. They also displayed unfamiliar warheads. But their most startling feat was the successful first test-fire of the long-range Shehab-3 with its cluster of tens of small bomblets, as DEBKAfile revealed Oct. 31. The entire range bore the imprint of new purchases from China. This Shehab-3, whose 2,000-km range brings Israel, the Middle East and Europe within reach - may be more than a match for any anti-missile missile system in American, Israeli or European arsenals – depending critically on the point of its fragmentation. Some of its features are still an enigma in the West. If the Shehab-3’s cluster separates close to target, the Israel-US Arrow has a chance to intercept it, but the Americans and Israelis have no defense against the multiple warhead if it separates at a distance."

Target Iran 10/16/2006 Information Clearing House: "Scott Ritter talked about his book Target Iran: The Truth About the White House's Plans for Regime Change, published by Nation Books. He was joined by Seymour Hersh."

The naval exercise to be held by US, Bahrain and allies later this month brings a massive concentration of American naval, air and marine might to the Persian Gulf 10/13/2006 Debka: "US officials said the exercise starting Oct. 31 will practice interdicting ships carrying weapons of mass destruction and missiles. DEBKAfile’s military sources report: US naval, air and marine forces are massing in the Persian Gulf, Gulf of Oman and eastern Mediterranean opposite Lebanon and Syria. The big USS Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group (pictgure) arrives by Oct. 21. Facing these units are Iranian Revolutionary Guards naval, air and marine units together with the Iranian armed forces on full war preparedness."

There will be no attack on Iran this year 10/10/2006 Agora Vox

Dave Lindorff: Iran Attack Looks More Likely as Eisenhower Carrier Group Sails for Iran Theater 10/9/2006 Buzzflash: "What is deeply troubling here is the total silence on the part of the Democratic Party opposition. Not one Democrat in Congress, and as far as I know, not one Democratic candidate for Congress -- not even anti-war insurgent Ned Lamont in Connecticut -- has demanded an answer from Bush and the Pentagon for the obvious military buildup around Iran, or about published reports that the U.S. already has special forces in side Iran backing the terrorist organization MEK, and selecting targets for U.S. bombardment. If and when the U.S. attacks Iran, leading to a predicable -- if temporary -- rallying around the flag by the American public, and to an upset win by incumbent Republican congressional candidates, Democrats will have only themselves to blame for the debacle."

The Bushes & the Truth About Iran 9/21/2006 Consortium News: "Those historical facts – relating to Republican contacts with Iran’s Islamic regime more than a quarter century ago – are relevant today because an underlying theme in Bush’s rationale for war is that direct negotiations with Iran are pointless. But Bush’s own father may know otherwise. The evidence is now persuasive that George H.W. Bush participated in negotiations with Iran’s radical regime in 1980, behind President Jimmy Carter’s back, with the goal of arranging for 52 American hostages to be released after Bush and Ronald Reagan were sworn in as Vice President and President, respectively. In exchange, the Republicans agreed to let Iran obtain U.S.-manufactured military supplies through Israel. The Iranians kept their word, releasing the hostages immediately upon Reagan’s swearing-in on Jan. 20, 1981. Over the next few years, the Republican-Israel-Iran weapons pipeline operated mostly in secret, only exploding into public view with the Iran-Contra scandal in late 1986. Even then, the Reagan-Bush team was able to limit congressional and other investigations, keeping the full history – and the 1980 chapter – hidden from the American people."

The March to War: Iran Preparing for US Air Attacks 9/21/2006 Global Research: "It must also be noted that an attack on Iran would be of a scale which would dwarf the events in Afghanistan, Iraq, and the Levant. A full blown war on Iran would not only swallow up and incorporate these other conflicts. It would engulf the entire Middle East and Central Asian region into an extensive confrontation."

Senior intel official: Pentagon moves to second-stage planning for Iran strike option 9/21/2006 Raw Story: "The official, who is close to the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the highest ranking officials of each branch of the US military, says the Chiefs have started what is called "branches and sequels" contingency planning. "The JCS has accepted the inevitable," the intelligence official said, "and is engaged in serious contingency planning to deal with the worst case scenarios that the intelligence community has been painting." A second military official, although unfamiliar with these latest scenarios, said there is a difference between contingency planning -- which he described as "what if, then what" planning -- and "branches and sequels," which takes place after an initial plan has been decided upon. Adding to the concern of both military and intelligence officials alike is the nuclear option, the possibility of pre-emptive use of nuclear weapons targeting alleged WMD facilities in Iran."

La guerre monétaire États-Unis/Iran en suspens 9/19/2006 Reseau Voltaire: "En définitive, face au risque de déstabilisation générale, les États-Unis ont cédé et laissé le gouverneur de la banque centrale du Japon annoncer qu’il compenserait sur les marchés internationaux les échanges de la Saderat, en violation des directives US. Il n’y aura donc pas de crise, mais il est clair qu’en cas de guerre états-uno-iranienne, le dollar serait très gravement menacé."

Retired Colonel: ‘We Are Conducting Military Operations Inside Iran Right Now. The Evidence Is Overwhelming.’ 9/18/2006 Think Progress

How war against drugs may have helped Hezbollah 8/21/2006 Times: ''Around 250 sets of military night vision equipment sent to Tehran from Britain appear to have been passed on to the Lebanon-based militia group which it funds and supports. They were sold under an export licence in 2003 to help the Iranians to monitor the desert and mountainous border regions with Afghanistan. Despite the British Government’s current confrontation with Iran over its suspected nuclear weapons programme, the longstanding co-operative arrangement between Tehran and London over countering the heroin trade has produced effective results. It is a relationship born of necessity. About 60 per cent of the heroin that reaches Britain and other European capitals comes from the poppy fields of Afghanistan, via Iran. The battle to stem the flow of heroin and opium has resulted in the deaths of more than 3,500 Iranian anti-narcotics police since 1997.''

Ahmadinejad’s letter to Bush 5/9/2006 CNN: text of 8 pages of the letter, where are the 18?

Did Bush Force British Minister Out? London Papers: Foreign Secretary Jack Straw's Iran Stance Prompted Angry Bush Call To Blair 5/7/2006 CBS

Intelligence indications and warnings abound as Bush administration finalizes military attack on Iran. 4/28/2006 Global Research: "Southeast Asian intelligence sources report that Burma's (Myanmar's) recent abrupt decision to move its capital from Rangoon (Yangon) to remote Pyinmana, 200 miles to the north, is a result of Chinese intelligence warnings to its Burmese allies about the effects of radiation resulting from a U.S. conventional or tactical nuclear attack on Iranian nuclear facilities. There is concern that a series of attacks on Iranian nuclear installations will create a Chernobyl-like radioactive cloud that would be caught up in monsoon weather in the Indian Ocean. Low-lying Rangoon lies in the path of monsoon rains that would continue to carry radioactive fallout from Iran over South and Southeast Asia between May and October. Coastal Indian Ocean cities like Rangoon, Dhaka, Calcutta, Mumbai, Chennai, and Colombo would be affected by the radioactive fallout more than higher elevation cities since humidity intensifies the effects of the fallout. Thousands of government workers were given only two days' notice to pack up and leave Rangoon for the higher (and dryer) mountainous Pyinmana. In neighboring West Bengal, the leftist government and its national leftist allies around the country are planning massive demonstrations during Bush's upcoming trip to India. They are protesting the war in Iraq as well as the threats against Iran. Reports from Yemen indicate that western oil companies are concerned about U.S. intentions in Iran since the southern Arabian country catches the edge of the monsoon rains that could contain radioactive fallout from an attack, endangering their workers in the country."

Cheney has tapped Iranian expatriate, arms dealer to surveil discussions with Iran, officials say 4/20/2006 Raw Story: "The Department of Defense and Vice President Dick Cheney have retained the services of Iran-Contra arms dealer and discredited intelligence asset Manucher Ghorbanifar as their “man on the ground,” in order to report on any interaction and attempts at negotiations between Iranian officials and US ambassador to Iraq, Zelmay Khalilzad, current and former intelligence officials say… If these allegations are true, Ghorbanifar’s recruitment reinstates him to a position he held during the Iran Contra affair, when he was implicated in the scandal of selling arms to Iran in order to fund a right wing terrorist group, the Contras, who were battling the democratically-elected Sandinista government in Nicaragua."

Bush's Secret War 4/16/2006 Hullabaloo: "the Iranians have been saying American military troops are in there, have been saying it for almost a year. I was in Berlin two weeks ago, sat next to the ambassador, the Iranian ambassador to the IAEA. And I said, "Hey, I hear you're accusing Americans of being in there operating with some of the units that have shot up revolution guard units." He said, quite frankly, "Yes, we know they are. We've captured some of the units, and they've confessed to working with the Americans." The evidence is mounting that that decision has already been made, and I don't know that the other part of that has been completed, that there has been any congressional approval to do this. My view of the plan is, there is this period in which some kinds of ground troops will operate inside Iran, and then what we're talking about is the second part, which is this air strike."

Bombs That Would Backfire 4/16/2006 NYT: "The Iranian legislature responded with a $20 million initiative for its intelligence organizations to counter American influence in the region. Iranian agents began casing American embassies and other targets around the world. In June 1996, the Qods Force, the covert-action arm of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, arranged the bombing of an apartment building used by our Air Force in Khobar, Saudi Arabia, killing 19 Americans. At that point, the Clinton administration and the Pentagon considered a bombing campaign. But after long debate, the highest levels of the military could not forecast a way in which things would end favorably for the United States. While the full scope of what America did do remains classified, published reports suggest that the United States responded with a chilling threat to the Tehran government and conducted a global operation that immobilized Iran's intelligence service. Iranian terrorism against the United States ceased."

Iran suicide bombers ‘ready to hit Britain’ 4/16/2006 Times, London: "IRAN has formed battalions of suicide bombers to strike at British and American targets if the nation’s nuclear sites are attacked. According to Iranian officials, 40,000 trained suicide bombers are ready for action… According to western intelligence documents leaked to The Sunday Times, the Revolutionary Guards are in charge of a secret nuclear weapons programme designed to evade the scrutiny of the International Atomic Energy Agency. One of the leaked reports, dating from February this year, confirms that President George W Bush is preparing to strike Iran. “If the problem is not resolved in some way, he intends to act before leaving office because it would be ‘unfair’ to leave the task of destroying Iran’s nuclear facilities to a new president,” the document says."

The Flight Forward 4/16/2006 Whiskey Bar: "Instead of creating a secular, pro-American client state in the heart of the Middle East, the invasion of Iraq has destroyed the front-line Arab regime opposing Tehran, installed a pro-Iranian government in Baghdad and vastly increased Iranian influence, not only in Iraq, but throughout the Shi'a world. It's also moved the Revolutionary Guard one step closer to the Kuwaiti and Saudi oil fields – the prize upon which the energy security of the West depends. By the traditional standards of U.S. foreign policy, this is a fiasco of almost unbelievable proportions. More to the point, the neocons may believe that unless they can do something dramatic to recoup those losses, they won't be able to safely withdraw large numbers of troops from Iraq, since they are A.) the only remaining source of U.S. influence in the country and B.) the only shield against Iranian infiltration of both Iraq and the Shi'a majority regions of Saudia Arabia and the Gulf emirates. Yet the military need for such a draw down becomes more critical with each passing day, as the all-volunteer Army is stretched towards its breaking point. In other words, the administration, and the Pentagon, have gotten themselves into one hell of a jam – militarily, strategically and politically. As desperate and reckless as attempted regime change in Iran might seem to us, to the Cheneyites it may look like the only move left on the board."

Risking the Ultimate Blowback - Don't Blitz Iran 4/15/2006 Counterpunch: "The first US priority after attacking Iran will be to try to stop the Iranians closing the Gulf at the Strait of Hormuz which they could do by sinking a passing tanker. 90 per cent of oil from the Gulf--about two fifths of the world's supply--is moved by tanker through the Strait, which is less than five navigable miles wide. An easy target area. It will probably take only one sunk ship to seriously disrupt world oil supplies. But even if a single tanker doesn't actually block the Strait, the crews of others are not going to be happy about sailing into danger. Insurance rates will go through the roof, and recent spikes in oil prices will be nothing compared with what would come. If the Iranians manage to sink two large tankers at the Gulf choke point, say goodbye to Gulf oil exports for a week or so. Perhaps US citizens will be happy to pay $10 or more per gallon to fill their cars ; but maybe not. Even then, does anyone think that Iran would let the US clear the Hormuz Strait without doing its best to disrupt salvage efforts? Like hell it would. There would be suicide boat attacks, suicide plane attacks, and further missile strikes. Although most airfields in Iran would be destroyed by cruise missiles and much of the Iranian air force would be shot out of the sky by roving US fighter jocks within hours of the war beginning, Tehran would still retain a limited offensive capability. The Iranians would fire most of the some 400 medium-range ballistic missiles they've got at US bases in Iraq and Afghanistan and at the oil fields across the Gulf. They know exactly where they are, without need for all the clever satellite technology the Pentagon has, because their myriad supporters tell them the precise locations. (There are hundreds of thousands of Shias in these countries.) The missiles might not cause many casualties among US troops, but they will destroy a lot of oil production capacity in Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and the southern Gulf nations. (Some US troops will die, of course : maybe a few hundred if a couple of missiles strike lucky. But what does that matter to the Bush Administration?) If Israel is involved in the attacks (and, given the paranoia of some of Iran's leaders about Israel, probably even if Israel is not involved in the attacks), then some longer-range missiles will be pooped off in a westerly direction, hoping to impact somewhere in Israel, which at least some of them would do. They might deliver biological or chemical warheads, but even if they are just high explosive and cause only a dozen or so casualties each there would be irresistible pressure within Israel to retaliate, probably with nuclear weapons. Nobody except a few Librul peaceniks will care about that."

Rumsfeld Sends MEK Terrorists into Iran 4/14/2006 Propaganda Matrix

THE IRAN PLANS - Would President Bush go to war to stop Tehran from getting the bomb? by SEYMOUR M. HERSH 4/10/2006 New Yorker: "He went on, “Nuclear planners go through extensive training and learn the technical details of damage and fallout—we’re talking about mushroom clouds, radiation, mass casualties, and contamination over years. This is not an underground nuclear test, where all you see is the earth raised a little bit. These politicians don’t have a clue, and whenever anybody tries to get it out”—remove the nuclear option—“they’re shouted down.”The attention given to the nuclear option has created serious misgivings inside the offices of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, he added, and some officers have talked about resigning. Late this winter, the Joint Chiefs of Staff sought to remove the nuclear option from the evolving war plans for Iran—without success, the former intelligence official said. “The White House said, ‘Why are you challenging this? The option came from you.’ ” The Pentagon adviser on the war on terror confirmed that some in the Administration were looking seriously at this option, which he linked to a resurgence of interest in tactical nuclear weapons among Pentagon civilians and in policy circles. He called it “a juggernaut that has to be stopped.” He also confirmed that some senior officers and officials were considering resigning over the issue. “There are very strong sentiments within the military against brandishing nuclear weapons against other countries,” the adviser told me. “This goes to high levels.” The matter may soon reach a decisive point, he said, because the Joint Chiefs had agreed to give President Bush a formal recommendation stating that they are strongly opposed to considering the nuclear option for Iran. “The internal debate on this has hardened in recent weeks,” the adviser said. “And, if senior Pentagon officers express their opposition to the use of offensive nuclear weapons, then it will never happen.” The adviser added, however, that the idea of using tactical nuclear weapons in such situations has gained support from the Defense Science Board, an advisory panel whose members are selected by Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. “They’re telling the Pentagon that we can build the B61 with more blast and less radiation,” he said."

US considers use of nuclear weapons against Iran 4/8/2006 AFP: "But the former senior intelligence official said the attention given to the nuclear option has created serious misgivings inside the military, and some officers have talked about resigning after an attempt to remove the nuclear option from the evolving war plans in Iran failed, according to the report. "There are very strong sentiments within the military against brandishing nuclear weapons against other countries," the magazine quotes the Pentagon adviser as saying. The adviser warned that bombing Iran could provoke "a chain reaction" of attacks on American facilities and citizens throughout the world and might also reignite Hezbollah. "If we go, the southern half of Iraq will light up like a candle," the adviser is quoted as telling The New Yorker."

U.S. Officials Are Mulling Iran Strikes, Experts Say 4/7/2006 Forward: "Several experts and former officials interviewed by the Forward pointed to Vice President Dick Cheney as one of the key figures who has concluded that the ongoing diplomatic efforts to bring Iran before the United Nations Security Council and eventually slap the Islamic regime with sanctions will come to naught, forcing Washington to resort to force to prevent Tehran from developing nuclear weapons… "Up until recently, I dismissed talk of military strikes against Iran as posturing or left-wing conspiracy theories," said Joseph Cirincione, the director for non-proliferation at the Carnegie Endowment. "But I recently changed my mind after friends close to the White House and the Pentagon told me that some people in government have already decided the military option was the only one and there was active military planning."

Iran: High-speed underwater missile test-fired 4/2/2006 CNN: "The Iranian-made underwater missile has a speed of 223 miles per hour, said Gen. Ali Fadavi, deputy head of the Revolutionary Guards' Navy. That would make it about three or four times faster than a torpedo and as fast as the world's fastest known underwater missile, the Russian-made VA-111 Shkval, developed in 1995. It was not immediately known if the Iranian missile, which has not yet been named, was based on the Shkval."

Attacking Iran May Trigger Terrorism - U.S. Experts Wary of Military Action Over Nuclear Program 4/2/2006 Washington Post

Iranian oil bourse hits wall 3/15/2006 Globe & Mail: "But they are jumping the gun if they still figure Iran is within days of launching a new international oil exchange that would sell its own and other Middle Eastern oil producers' black gold in euros rather than U.S. dollars -- and which, the theory goes, could ultimately torpedo the greenback and the U.S. economy. Despite repeated reports over the past 18 months or so that the planned bourse would finally open for business on March 20, 2006 -- and go head to head with the New York Mercantile Exchange and the ICE Futures Exchange in London -- the start date has been postponed by at least several months and maybe more than a year." [At a time when Iran has begun negotiations with the US over Iraq…]

U.S. Campaign Is Aimed at Iran's Leaders 3/13/2006 Washington Post: "Undersecretary of State R. Nicholas Burns said in an interview that the department will also add staff in Dubai, which is part of the United Arab Emirates, as well as at other embassies in the vicinity of Iran, all assigned to watch Tehran. He called the new Dubai outpost the "21st century equivalent" of the Riga station in Latvia that monitored the Soviet Union in the 1930s when the United States had no embassy in Moscow."

The Tehran Oil Bourse: What the Iran 'nuclear issue' is really about 3/10/2006 Global Research

Iran: What to do? Not only are there alternatives to war, they're more likely to succeed 2/17/2006 Working for Change

Iran and the jaws of a trap 2/3/2006 Asia Times: "If such things could be planned, one might be persuaded to consider this debate as an aspect of strategic deception. In fact, the US and British forces in Iraq and in the Persian Gulf as well as the forces in Afghanistan are quite able to redeploy on short notice, for example during the days of an initial air campaign against Iran for large-scale operations against the remaining Iranian forces and can be reinforced during the war. The US military infrastructure at the borders of Iran has a very substantial capability to deal with surge requirements. The somewhat standard scenario for this war - as indicated by Chinese and Russian war games - has the following features: An initial Israeli air attack against some Iranian nuclear targets, command and control targets and Shahab missile sites. Iran retaliates with its remaining missiles, tries to close the Gulf, attacks US naval assets and American and British forces in Iraq. If Iranian missiles have chemical warheads (in fact or presumed), the US will immediately use nuclear weapons to destroy the Iranian military and industrial infrastructure. If not, an air campaign of up to two weeks will prepare the ground campaign for the occupation of the Iranian oil and gas fields. Mass mobilization in Iraq against US-British forces will be at most a nuisance - easily suppressed by the ruthless employment of massive firepower. And Israel will use the opportunity to deal with Syria and South Lebanon, and possibly with its Palestinian problem. The character of this war will be completely different from the Iraq war. No show-casing of democracy, no "nation-building", no journalists, no Red Cross - but the kind of war the United States would have fought in North Vietnam if it had not had to reckon with the Soviet Union and China. Paul Levian is a former German intelligence officer."

South Africa, Malaysia and Cuba back Iran in standoff 1/30/2006 Irak War

'US comments on Iran N-vote 'inappropriate'' 1/27/2006 Iran Mania: "India described as "inappropriate" comments from the US ambassador to New Delhi linking a historic nuclear deal with the United States to India's stance on Iran's nuclear program, AFP reported. Ambassador David Mulford was summoned by India's Foreign Secretary, Shyam Saran, and told that his comments were "inappropriate and not conducive to building a strong partnership between the two democracies," a foreign ministry statement said. "The ambassador expressed his sincere regrets, saying that his remarks had been taken out of context," the statement added. On Wednesday, Mulford said India could lose out on the historic nuclear deal with the US if it did not vote against Iran at a key meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)."

Intelligence indications and warnings abound as Bush administration finalizes military attack on Iran 1/2/2006 Wayne Madsen Report: scroll down. "Intelligence and military sources in the United States and abroad are reporting on various factors that indicate a U.S. military hit on Iranian nuclear and military installations, that may involve tactical nuclear weapons, is in the final stages of preparation."

The impending Cakewalk in Iran 9/26/2005 Centre for Research on Globalization: "Why should Iran be threatened and humiliated in front of the world body when Israel, India and Pakistan stole nuclear technology and developed bombs for themselves? The NPT is a degrading apartheid-system that maintains the status quo and keeps America's boot firmly placed on the neck of the developing world. It should be replaced with a scheme that puts justice and evenhandedness above the self-serving bigotries of the superpower and its cohorts. But, why are we kidding ourselves anyway? The current farce at the UN has nothing to do with Iran's imaginary nuclear weapons-program. The whole affair is just a shabby rerun of the lead up to "Shock and Awe"."

Iran envoy: We helped US in Iraq polls 2/17/2005 Al Jazeera

The Democrats and Iran - Look Who's Backing Bush's Next War 1/20/2005 Counterpunch

Iran: The Next Strategic Target 1/19/2005 Alternet

U.S. conducting secret missions inside Iran-report 1/16/2005 Reuters

How Iran will fight back 12/16/2004 Asia Times

Pentagon turns heat up on Iran 11/21/2004 Guardian: "Washington and European Union on collision course over how to neutralise Tehran's nuclear capabilities"

To Destroy Iran’s Nuclear Bomb Program, 350 Targets Must Be Hit 11/19/2004 Debka,Israel: "According to DEBKAfile’s Washington sources, the Pentagon’s most recent game model on military measures to dispose of Iran’s nuclear threat concludes it will be necessary to topple the Islamic republic’s regime at the same time. The first stage would be a bombing mission against the regime’s primary prop, the Revolutionary Guards. The second stage would be the destruction of known and probable nuclear sites – a much harder mission given the hundreds of sites known and unknown number and carefully camouflaged underground behind cunning window-dressing. US intelligence estimates as many as 350 sites. It does not have precise knowledge of which are the most important or even which are active. Regime change in stage three would entail ground action. At present, there are no air bases within range for carrying out stages two and three. Sufficient US troops for overthrowing the regime would pose a problem given Iran’s land area of four times that of Iraq. Furthermore, there is no assurance that Iran would wait for stages 2 or even 3. Iranian agents may well pre-empt US action or retaliate by sabotage strikes or terrorist action inside America. Co-opting Israel’s air might to the operation poses problems too. The Israelis are found to know as little about the locations of installations as the Americans. To reach Iran, Israeli warplanes would have to fly east over Saudi Arabia and Jordan, or north over Turkey. The distance of some targets, such as Iran’s nuclear sites in the Caspian Sea region, is too great for Israeli planes to make the round trip."

Extremists moving across Iran-Iraq border 11/19/2004 Salon: published 11/8, can be seen in context with Debka and other articles on the US's attacking Iran.

War-Gaming the Mullahs - The U.S. weighs the price of a pre-emptive strike 9/22/2004 Newsweek: "NEWSWEEK has learned that the CIA and DIA have war-gamed the likely consequences of a U.S. pre-emptive strike on Iran's nuclear facilities. No one liked the outcome. As an Air Force source tells it, "The war games were unsuccessful at preventing the conflict from escalating." "

Israel warns on weapons 9/14/2004 Herald Sun, Australia: "ISRAEL warned yesterday that Iran could be in a position to develop nuclear weapons without outside help within six months."

Four Day War - The Iran/Israel conflagration, a history. 9/6/2004 American Conservative: "In his campaign stops, President Bush keeps reiterating that the world is a safer place because of his actions. Yet looking at the state of world affairs it is very difficult to agree with him. The dead-ended Mideast peace talks, Saudi Arabia’s internal turmoil, continuing Islamist terrorist threats, the vulnerability of American troops in Iraq, and the question of Iran’s nukes all contribute to maintaining tensions at an all-time high. Barring a solid and lasting peace settlement between Israel and its Arab neighbors, the countries of the Middle East are far from nuclear disarmament. If anything, nuclear proliferation is only likely to increase as states like Saudi Arabia find that they, too, need to defend themselves against a nuclear-armed Iran. Recent reports have indicated that Saudi Arabia is looking to lease Pakistan’s nukes. The arms race of the Cold War may be dead, but the race for hot weapons has never been so alive."

Iran heightens stakes in battle to control Najaf 8/22/2004 Scotsman: "The Americans are not in the mood for compromise. The reason is that in Najaf there is a dangerous extra dimension Sadr has the implicit, if not the overt, backing of Iran, which has moved up Washington’s list of pariah states to share the number one slot with Sudan. Ever since a group of radical students climbed into the American embassy in Tehran in 1979 and held 52 American diplomats hostage for 444 days, successive American administrations have been obsessed with Iran."

Iran warns of preemptive strike to prevent attack on nuclear sites 8/19/2004 AFP

Commentary: Iran's war threat is very real 8/19/2004 UPI: "Some political leaderships specialize in using tough talk that they never seriously mean to back up with equally ruthless actions. But the Iranians are not like that. They lost around a half-million dead to repel Saddam in the eight-year Iran-Iraq war from 1980 to 1988. So when Shamkhani threatens the prospect of a major war against the United States: Believe him."

Regime change in Iran now in Bush’s sights 7/18/2004 Sunday Telegraph: "PRESIDENT George Bush has promised that if re-elected in November he will make regime change in Iran his new target. Bush named Iran as part of the Axis of Evil along with North Korea and Iraq almost three years ago. A US government official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said that military action would not be overt in changing Iran, but rather that the US would work to stir revolts in the country and hope to topple the current conservative religious leadership. The official said: “If George Bush is re-elected there will be much more intervention in the internal affairs of Iran.” "

Now America accuses Iran of complicity in World Trade Center attack 7/18/2004 Telegraph: "Iran gave free passage to up to 10 of the September 11 hijackers just months before the 2001 attacks and offered to co-operate with al-Qa'eda against the US, an American report will say this week. The all-party report by the 9/11 Commission, set up by Congress in 2002, will state that Iran, not Iraq, fostered relations with the al-Qa'eda network in the years leading up to the world's most devastating terrorist attack."

Iran warns US against attacking Najaf, Karbala, killing Sadr 4/22/2004 The News. Pakistan

Iran: Human tragedy forces US to rethink hard line 12/28/2003 Independent: "If there is some small consolation to be had in the horrific loss of life from the Iranian earthquake, it is that the disaster is likely to strengthen the growing ties between Iran and the outside world and further rein in the US neo-conservative hawks itching to deal with the Tehran mullahs the way they dealt with Saddam Hussein… Quiet diplomacy by Mr Powell over the past few months risked being undermined by new contacts developed between the Pentagon and the Iranian exile Manucher Ghorbanifar, best known as the middleman in the Iran-Contra arms-for-hostages fiasco in the 1980s. Mr Ghorbanifar gave his Pentagon contacts information - deemed shaky at best - about Saddam smuggling enriched uranium into Iran."

Poll: Majority Backs Use of Force in Iran 6/24/2003 Washington Post: "President Bush last week said the rest of the world should join the United States in declaring that it "will not tolerate" nuclear weapons in Iran -- a vow that most Americans appear willing to back with force. By 56 percent to 38 percent, the public endorsed the use of the military to block Iran from developing nuclear arms… Two in three -- 67 percent -- of those interviewed said they approve of the way Bush is dealing with Iraq. That's still a strong majority but down from 75 percent in late April, at the end of the conflict. Nearly as many -- 64 percent -- said the benefits of the war outweighed its cost, a drop from 70 percent in the late April survey. Seven in 10 said they were concerned that the United States would become involved in a long and costly peacekeeping mission in Iraq, a figure unchanged in recent months. The survey also suggests that the fog of war extended far beyond the Iraq battlefield. About one in four Americans incorrectly believes Iraq used chemical or biological weapons against U.S. forces during the conflict. Slightly more than six in 10 said Iraq had not, while the remainder weren't sure."

Bolton: Military Action on Iran an Option 6/20/2003 Reuters

Washington plays into Iranian clerics' hands 6/17/2003 Asia Times: "As a logical component of the seemingly irrational American government's design on Iran, its counterproductive policy towards the ongoing Iranian student pro-democracy movement, which is striving for democracy as envisaged by the Iranians, will only help Iran's ruling elite to suppress that indigenous movement as a Washington-inspired riot."

Special forces 'prepare for Iran attack' 6/17/2003 London Evening Standard: "British and American intelligence and special forces have been put on alert for a conflict with Iran within the next 12 months, as fears grow that Tehran is building a nuclear weapons programme… A British intelligence official said that any campaign against Iran would not be a ground war like the one in Iraq. The Americans will use different tactics, said the intelligence officer. "It is getting quite scary." "

Iran 'jams' US-based satellite channels after clashes 6/15/2003 Telegraph

U.S. Alarmed at Treatment of Iranian Protestors 6/14/2003 Reuters: as alarmed as they were when US troops fired on protestors in Mosul?

US nods approval as Iranian student protests explode onto the streets 6/14/2003 Sydney Morning Herald

Tehran protesters call for Khamenei's head 6/13/2003 Guardian, UK

Iran working on nuclear bomb, says Rumsfeld 6/12/2003 Guardian, UK

Iran greets Iraqi Shia militant 6/9/2003 BBC

Iran sways Iraqis with food, aid 6/9/2003 CS Monitor

Iran Says U.S. Pressure Over Nukes Will Backfire 6/9/2003 Reuters

Iran: Failure to tell IAEA of 1991 uranium imports did not 'violate' treaty 6/8/2003 AP

Dangers of an aggressive US approach to Iran 6/8/2003 Financial Times

Shia group link to rocket attack against US troops 6/5/2003 Financial Times

N Koreans and Iran told to drop nuclear plans 6/3/2003 Telegraph, UK: "Iran and North Korea were identified by the G8 as a "pre-eminent threat to international security" last night and ordered to stop all attempts to acquire nuclear weapons."

Iran demands US apology 6/3/2003 The News, Pakistan: "Iran on Monday hit back at US allegations that it has failed to crack down on fugitive al-Qaeda members, calling on Washington to apologise to the world for its own past support of the network. "The Americans should present a full apology to the international community for the support they gave to al-Qaeda," foreign ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi told reporters. The official was referring to a period in the 1980s when millions of dollars of covert US aid was channeled -- through the Pakistani secret service -- to Islamist groups battling the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan."

The Iran Debate - Pentagon Eyes Massive Covert Attack on Iran 5/29/2003 ABC

Iran vows no compromise with US 5/29/2003 AFP

Al-Qaida 'sheltered in shah's lodge' 5/29/2003 Guardian, UK

ON TO TEHRAN? The threat of war is real 5/28/2003 AntiWar

Neo-cons move quickly on Iran 5/28/2003 Asia Times: "Pentagon hawks, particularly Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz and Undersecretary for Policy Douglas Feith, who have long been closely associated with neo-conservatives outside the administration centered at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), reportedly favor using the heavily armed, Iraq-based Iranian rebel group, the Mujahideen-e Khalq Organization, which surrendered to US forces in April, as the core of a possible opposition military force. They are also pursuing links with the Iranian exile community centered in southern California, which has rallied increasingly around Reza Pahlavi, the son of the former Shah of Iran who was overthrown by the Islamic Revolution in 1979. According to a recent story in the US Jewish newspaper The Forward, Pahlavi has cultivated senior officials in Israel's Likud government with which the neo-conservatives in Washington - both in the administration and outside it - are closely allied."

Iran seeks nukes, White House says 5/28/2003 Atlanta Journal-Constitution: "The future of Iran is to be determined by the Iranian people," said White House spokesman Ari Fleischer. "It's a diplomatic course that the president is pursuing. It's a course that trusts the Iranian people at its core." - that's why he wants to re-install the Shah, it was such a success the first time around!

U.S. Plan Targets Iran Clerics 5/28/2003 Newsday: "But behind the scenes, the administration officials are exploring ways to support a public uprising by diminishing the influence of Iran's mullahs, or religious leaders, some of whom control the country's Revolutionary Guards and provide support for militant groups like Hezbollah. Sources familiar with the discussions said the Pentagon has been pushing hard to launch a covert plan aimed at destabilizing the clerics. Some Defense Department officials have suggested using the Mujaheddin-e Khalq - an Iraq-based resistance group designated by the United States as a terrorist organization - as a ready-made opposition group in Iran, a source said."

Pentagon adds to despair of Iran's reformers 5/27/2003 Guardian, UK: "The Pentagon's pronouncement that it would seek to "destabilise" Iran's Islamic republic has given the country's clerics ammunition to portray their liberal opponents as traitors. Hardly a day passes without warnings in the official press against reformists accused of sowing divisions."

Tehran defies US with nuclear program 5/27/2003 Sydney Morning Herald

Group Says Iran Has 2 Undisclosed Nuclear Laboratories 5/26/2003 NYT: "The group, the National Council of Resistance of Iran, an umbrella for Iranian opposition organizations, said the facilities were two small laboratories that operate as satellite plants to a larger nuclear facility in Natanz, in central Iran. The group said the facilities were discovered by the People's Mujahedeen, a resistance group that brought the Natanz plant to the attention of international weapons inspectors." - the Mujahedeen have been described as a terrorist cult group.

Downer's call to Iran: crack down on terror 5/26/2003 Sydney Morning Herald: "The Australian Foreign Minister, Alexander Downer, delivered a tough, last-chance call to Iran yesterday to crack down on al-Qaeda terrorists allegedly in the country. His warning came as the United States threatened aggressive action to overthrow the Iranian Government. Mr Downer told his Iranian counterpart, Kamal Kharrazi, that Tehran must do everything possible to crack down on al-Qaeda and other terrorists. Australia wanted to see tougher action and Washington saw this as a "life-or-death issue", he told Dr Kharrazi."

US cuts off contacts with Iran 5/26/2003 The Age, Australia: "But State Department officials are concerned that the level of popular discontent there is much lower than Pentagon officials believe, leading to the possibility that US efforts could ultimately discredit reformers in Iran."

Iran: Serious about fighting al-Qaida 5/25/2003 Reuters

U.S. Contemplating New Moves Against Iran 5/25/2003 Reuters

Pentagon sets sights on a new Tehran regime 5/24/2003 Guardian, UK: "The Pentagon has proposed a policy of regime change in Iran, after reports that al-Qaida leaders are coordinating terrorist attacks from Iran. But the plan is opposed by the US state department and the British government, officials in Washington said yesterday. The Pentagon plan would involve overt means, such as anti-government broadcasts transmitted to Iran, and covert means, possibly including support for the Iraq-based armed opposition movement Mojahedin Khalq (MEK), even though it is designated a terrorist group by the state department."

Report: U.N. told Iran has some Al-Qaeda terrorists in custody 5/22/2003 USA Today: "Washington and Tehran have trade accusations all week. Thursday, Iran demanded on Thursday that the United States prove its assertions that Tehran harbors al-Qaeda terrorists and claimed Osama bin Laden's network of "threatening" Iranian national interests. Saeed Pourazizi, a close aide to President Mohammad Khatami, said it was Tehran's policy to crack down on al-Qaeda — not support it, as senior Bush administration officials suggested Wednesday. Al-Qaeda "is a terrorist group threatening Iran's interests. Its extremist interpretation of Islam contradicts the Islamic democracy Iran is trying to promote. There is no commonality of anything between us," Pourazizi told The Associated Press."

Top al-Qaida Harbored in Iran - Source: New attacks ordered from there 5/17/2003 Newsday: "The United States has developed intelligence indicating that top al-Qaida leaders operating inside Iran directed Monday's bombing attacks in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, and have ordered a terrorist strike in East Africa, according to counterterrorism sources. Intelligence officials say that top operational leader Saif al-Adil, who has been Osama bin Laden's security chief and is hiding in Iran, is apparently under the protection of the country's Revolutionary Guards."

New Front Sets Sights On Toppling Iran Regime 5/16/2003 Forward: "For now, President Bush's official stance is to encourage the Iranian people to push the mullah regime aside themselves, but observers believe that the policy is not yet firm, and that has created an opportunity for activists. Neoconservatives advocating regime change in Tehran through diplomatic pressure — and even covert action — appear to be winning the debate within the administration, several knowledgeable observers said. "There is a pact emerging between hawks in the administration, Jewish groups and Iranian supporters of Reza Pahlavi [the exiled son of the former shah of Iran] to push for regime change," said Pooya Dayanim, president of the Iranian-Jewish Public Affairs Committee in Los Angeles and a hawk on Iran."

MILITARY MIGHT - The man behind 'total war' in the Mideast 5/14/2003 SF Chronicle: A fellow at the conservative American Enterprise Institute, Ledeen is a former employee of the Pentagon, the State Department and the National Security Council. As a consultant working with NSC head Robert McFarlane, he was involved in the transfer of arms to Iran during the Iran-Contra affair … Now Ledeen is calling for regime change beyond Iraq. In an address entitled "Time to Focus on Iran -- The Mother of Modern Terrorism," for the policy forum of the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs on April 30, he declared, "The time for diplomacy is at an end; it is time for a free Iran, free Syria and free Lebanon." With a group of other conservatives, Ledeen recently set up the Center for Democracy in Iran, an action group focusing on producing regime change in Iran."

Iranian leader angry at US talks 5/13/2003 BBC

Islamist group wiped out in northern Iraq -- with a little help from Iran 4/8/2003 AFP

U.S.: Iran will infiltrate 5 Iraqi cities 4/3/2003 UPI: The Rev Moon's UPI is keen on this sort of thing - "Iran's senior leadership decided last month to send irregular paramilitary units across their border with Iraq to harass American soldiers once Saddam Hussein's regime fell, according to U.S. intelligence reports."

The Shi'ite Wild Card - A Key Factor to U.S. Success in Iraq 4/2/2003 Pacific News

Iran Stops Volunteer Fighters At Iraqi Border 4/1/2003 Jihad Unspun

Tehran claims it is staying out of the war but suspicions remain 3/31/2003 Guardian

Iran Says Will Not Support U.S. Installed Govt In Iraq 3/30/2003 Ummah News

Marines line up on Iranian border 3/26/2003 Telegraph, UK: "Royal Marines were deployed to Iraq's border with Iran yesterday in a move that will unnerve Teheran's regime, which fears encirclement by American-led forces in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Ministry of Defence said the Royal Marines were merely "securing their area of operations" after seizing at the Faw peninsula. But with Iranian troops manning positions on the other side of the Shatt al-Arab waterway, British forces face a highly sensitive task."

Leave After War, Iraqi Opposition Group Tells U.S. 3/25/2003 Reuters: "Iraqis are against foreign dominance, and if they (the Americans) don't want to leave Iraq, the nation will resist," said Ayatollah Mohammed Baqir Hakim, head of the Tehran-based Supreme Council of the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI). "One of the legitimate ways of resistance against occupiers is force and weapons," he told a news conference. The gray-bearded, black-turbaned Hakim said SCIRI, which draws its support from Iraq's Muslim Shi'ite majority, said he had tens of thousands of troops stationed inside and outside Iraq, ready to resist any foreign occupation."

Iran: Supreme Leader denounces "satanic" US-led attack on Iraq 3/21/2003 IRNA

Iran's Nuclear Threat - In another worrying development for the Bush administration, Iran moves closer to operation of a facility to enrich uranium 3/8/2003 Time Magazine, USA: whose next after Iraq? "On a visit last month to Tehran, International Atomic Energy Agency director Mohamed ElBaradei announced he had discovered that Iran was constructing a facility to enrich uranium — a key component of advanced nuclear weapons — near Natanz. But diplomatic sources tell TIME the plant is much further along than previously revealed. The sources say work on the plant is "extremely advanced" and involves "hundreds" of gas centrifuges ready to produce enriched uranium and "the parts for a thousand others ready to be assembled." …A senior State department official said he believed El Baradei was trying to resolve the issue behind the scenes before going public. But experts say the new discoveries are very serious and should be handled in public. "If Iran were found to have an operating centrifuge, it would be a direct violation [of the non-proliferation treaty] and is something that would need immediately to be referred to the United Nations Security Council for action," says Jon Wolfstahl of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Iran insists that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes and told elBaradei that Tehran intends to bring all of its programs under IAEA safeguards. U.S. officials have said repeatedly they believe Iran is pursuing nuclear weapons… Israel will not take the "Osirak option" off the table, the [Israeli] official says, but "would prefer that this issue be solved in other ways."

Right Now, Iran is Suing the U.S. For Its Support of Saddam Hussein in the 80's 2/26/2003 Der Spiegel: "At the International Court of Justice, Teheran is accusing the United States of delivering dangerous chemicals and deadly viruses to Baghdad during the eighties."

Iran out of Bush's new spin on 'axis of evil' 2/15/2003 Sydney Morning Herald: "Iran opposes US military intervention in Iraq, but the US hopes it will play the same kind of search-and-rescue role it did during the 1991 Gulf War and the Afghanistan campaign."

Khameini: US-style democracy is as destructive as its bombs 2/10/2003 Tehran Times: "Global imperialism -- that is the closely-knit network of oil cartels, arms manufacturers, world Zionism, and their ally governments -- threatened by the awakening of the Islamic ummah, is in a state of aggression accompanied with panicky moves. This aggression, which has political, media, military and terrorist dimensions, is today clearly visible in the violent and unabashed conduct and statements of the militarists in charge of the United States government and the Zionist regime."

4th Day of Protests in Tehran, and Demonstrations Spread 11/12/2002 NYT: "Thousands of students ignored official warnings and demonstrated today for a fourth day over the death sentence for a reformist scholar charged with apostasy. Some 5,000 students gathered at Tehran University in support of the academic Hashem Aghajari, sentenced to hang for questioning clerical rule in the Islamic Republic."

European Pushback on Iraq Attack: The Iran Factor 10/3/2002 Stratfor: "Iran is home to more than 90 billion barrels of proven reserves, or about 9 percent of the world's total, making the country a rival to Saudi Arabia. Although its investment laws are strict -- for instance, the constitution prohibits the government from granting petroleum rights on a concessionary basis -- foreign companies find it easier to invest in the upstream energy sector in Iran than in Saudi Arabia. That has opened the door to several investments from European state energy majors -- including France's TotalFinaElf, Italy's Eni/Agip, Norway's Statoil and Spain's Cepsa."

New al-Qaeda chiefs 'operate from Iran' 8/28/2002 Times, UK

Mossad chief warns of Iran missile threat 6/28/2002 Times, UK: Israeli psyops - "THE HEAD OF Israel’s intelligence service has warned Nato that Iran is not only pressing ahead with a nuclear weapon programme but is developing missiles capable of hitting Europe and North America. Ephraim Halevy, the Mossad director, told Nato chiefs in a confidential briefing this week that Iran represented the most serious threat to stability in the Middle East and a danger to the West as well. Mr Halevy, a veteran diplomat, told Lord Robertson of Port Ellen, the Secretary-General, and other Nato representatives that Iran was investing heavily in the construction of a missile with a range beyond that of its Shibab-3, which can hit targets 3,000km away."

Iran to increase Islamic Jihad financing by 70 percent 6/8/2002 Haaretz, Israel: "Iran will increase the amount of money it gives the Islamic Jihad organization to carry out suicide attacks by 70 percent, the London based Al-Shark al-Awsat daily reported Saturday."

US losing Iran allies over 'evil axis' charge 6/4/2002 The News, Pakistan: "Khatami has not changed his position. He is offended by Bush's humiliating tone. He feels he has to defend his nation's integrity," said Mohammad Ali Abtahi, vice president and a Khatami confidante. "No leader is ready to negotiate when he and his nation are being insulted," he told Reuters. "Khatami used a very civilised tone talking to the Americans and see what he gets in return."

US setting up military base close to Iran borders 5/19/2002 AFP: "The military base is being set up in a region near Islam-Qaleh in Herat province, in Afghanistan, close to its border with Iran's northeastern Khorasan province, the Afghan official said on condition of anonymity."

A US Attack on Iraq Could Create a New Anti-US Coalition 3/18/2002 Peter Dale Scott: "A Sino-Russian alliance embracing Iran is the sort of nightmare few in the United States wish to think about but there is considerable speculation about this possibility in Russian writings, espcially if NATO expansion continues east to the Russian border" (Geoffrey Kemp and Robert E. Harkavy, Strategic Geography and the Changing Middle East [1997], xii).

Iranians extradite al-Qaeda murder suspect to Europe 2/28/2002 Times, UK: "His arrest is a boost for Europe’s war on terrorism, while American efforts to prosecute 500 prisoners from the Afghan war face further uncertainty after the Pentagon was forced to admit that it was struggling to find evidence against them."

Bin Laden's No 2 'captured in Iran' 2/18/2002 Guardian: "Zawahiri, the founder of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad, was arrested several days ago and has been imprisoned in the city's Evin jail, where political prisoners are usually held, the Hayat-e-Nou newspaper said."

U.S. terror claim is blow to Iran reformists 2/16/2002 IHT: "This was immensely damaging. It really, really hurt Khatami," said a Western diplomat in Tehran who was interviewed by telephone. "Iran had been engaging in constructive diplomacy since Sept. 11 - as constructive as anyone. Now, the conservatives are all saying, 'See, we told you they'd screw you in the end.'"

In Iran, 'Death to America' is back 2/12/2002 CS Monitor: congratulations, W.

Iran acts against Kabul opponent 2/10/2002 BBC: "All the offices in Iran of Gulbuddin Hekmatyar's Hezb-e-Islami faction have been closed down." Hekmatyar, once the darling of the CIA and the largest drug trafficker in Afghanistan, of course. He handed his networks over to bin Laden, according to Le Monde.

Iran arrests Taliban infiltrators 2/8/2002 The News, Pakistan

Iran ordered to pay $183 million to family of US citizen 2/8/2002 Ummah News: and now an Iranian court can press for judgments against the US for various acts of terror, including the shoot down of a civilian airliner in 1988. According to the Cuban model, can we expect interruption of phone service to Tehran?

EU-U.S. Gap Widening 2/7/2002 Tehran Times

Iran Moves to Ease Tension with U.S. 2/5/2002 Reuters: "After days of harsh warnings from U.S. officials and angry responses by Iranian hard-liners and military officials, Iran's reformist Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi offered an olive branch. ``Instead of waging negative propaganda, the Americans had better give us any information they have so that we go after them and keep them out of Iran,'' he told a news conference."

Israel thrusts Iran in line of US fire 2/2/2002 Guardian, UK

Targeting Tehran 1/27/2002 Al Ahram, Egypt: "Israeli officials are trying to persuade their friends in the US that Iran should be next on the hit list. Iran is a major source of backing for Lebanon's Hizbullah -- a common enemy to both Israel and the US. Iran, Israel claims, is giving military and financial backing to armed Palestinian groups in the occupied territories, something apparently confirmed by the Karin-A affair which has recently hit the headlines. US intelligence reports about Iran's nuclear potential may also be used to further the case against Iran." The next thing we know, Bush targets Iran!

Actor who plays film hero decried in US as an assassin and terrorist 1/3/2002 Guardian: "He seemed like a hero for the times. A black American doctor who had fought with the mojahedin against the Russians and had returned to treat women suffering under the Taliban. Except that the actor who plays the character in Kandahar - the film about Afghanistan which received so much acclaim that President George Bush asked for a private screening - has now been accused of being an Islamist terrorist who assassinated an Iranian dissident in the United States."

Iraq Eying Iran for Help Against U.S. 1/3/2002 Stratfor: "Iran could not stop the U.S. from attacking Iraq. But it could force Washington to commit to a more politically and economically expensive military campaign than it might desire. This would sufficiently raise the stakes to make the United States think twice about attacking Iraq."

Paris Reporters Say Bush Threatened War Last Summer: The French Connection 12/29/2001 Village Voice: "Under Clinton, few thought they could ever deal with the Taliban, and some wanted to pile on sanctions. But under Bush, talks started up once more. The purpose was legitimate at the start, Brisard notes. "It was for the U.S. to negotiate that bin Laden be given to them," he says. "Then it shifted to the point where advisers thought that the economic arguments would make the difference with the Taliban and accelerate the negotiations. They started to put the oil subsidies that would be given to the Taliban on the table. At the end of July, the negotiations broke down, because the U.S. threatened to go to war with the Taliban if they didn't accept the deal."

Four Iranian TV reporters arrested in Rome 12/20/2001 IRNA, Iran: "The Police Department of Rome has revealed the surnames of two of the detained reporters as "Sarmadi" and "Baqer-Hossieni" but the names of the other two reporters have not been mentioned yet. The police have not either referred to the reason behind arresting the Iranian reporters."

Iran hits back after US 'attack' on tanker 12/20/2001 Times, UK

U.S. Boats Attack Iran Oil Tanker in Gulf - TV 12/19/2001 Reuters

With Friends Like These 12/5/2001 Village Voice: Torricelli at it again, defending a group of Sadam Hussein backed Iranian terrorists, as he has the Miami narcoterrorists: "Still, MEK has powerful friends here. New Jersey Democratic senator Robert Torricelli has questioned the government's 1999 designation of MEK as a terrorist group, on grounds we are turning against what could be helpful opposition to Tehran."

Shah's Son Enlists Exiles in U.S. in Push to Change Iran 12/3/2001 NYT: His grandfather was removed for being pro-nazi, his father was a ruthless and ineffectual dictator installed by CIA who ruined his country, and now the little boy grows up to be another thug.

U.S. and Iran Shake Hands 11/13/2001 IHT

The impact of war on Iran - Tehran struggles with domestic effect of U.S. action 11/7/2001 Startfor

IRAN TO OFFER COVERT BACKING TO TALEBAN AND AL QA’EDA, SOURCES CLAIM 11/4/2001 Iran Press Service, France: From an Iranian exile site: "According to the source, Iran has sent to Afghanistan some 1.500 men, "fully equipped", drawn from the Revolutionary guards elite "Al-Qods" force to Afghanistan, mixed with Afghans militias belonging to Mr. Golboddin Hekmatyar, an unpopular Afghan warlord who lives in Iran. Mr. Hekmatyar, a former CIA collaborator, is remembered as the man who fought bitterly with Ahmad Shah Mas’ood after the defeat of the Red Army in Afghanistan, pounding Kabol for several weeks, paving the way for the Pakistan, Saudi and US backed Taleban’s almost bloodless take-over of the ruined capital in 1996. Since the start of the US-led military operations in Afghanistan aimed at "Al Qa’eda" organisation and its Taleban protectors, Mr. Hekmatyar has entered talks with the Taleban, offering them the support of his men, estimated at some 5.000, to fight the Americans. "At the same time, Iran would provide a thoroughfare for "Al-Qa’eda" to reach the Persian Gulf, where the US has a large armada, via the Iranian province of Sistan and Baloochistan on the borders of both Afghanista and Pakistan", the source said, adding that "warm waters’" seems to be the code name for possible operations.

What if bin Laden were hiding in Europe? 11/4/2001 IRNA, Iran: "As former Iranian president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani said in one of his Friday prayer sermons in Tehran after the September 11, following the terrorist attacks on the United States an unprecedented consensus was created in the world to fight terrorism. But the United States and Britain failed to take advantage of this golden opportunity. The process is now reversed. Instead of sympathizing with the Americans, the whole world is sympathizing with the Afghans, it said."

Iranian officials in secret Taliban talks 11/4/2001 Telegraph, UK: Iran is switching sides: "Iran is believed to have offered to arm and fund the return to Afghanistan of Gulbuddin Hekmatayar, a former Mujahideen leader, who has been living in exile in Iran and wants to take up arms against the former king. Officials also discussed providing fuel to the Taliban."

Sentimentalism has surrounded Bush White House: Daily 10/31/2001 IRNA, Iran: "It [the editorial] added that by saying that uprooting terrorism requires a firm global will and blessing of the United Nations, concluding that retaliatory military action, retribution and revenge will not get the job done and could well turn out to be counterproductive."

RIFT WITHIN IRANIAN LEADERSHIP OVER BIN LADEN 10/30/2001 Middle East NewsLine

Iran seizes 2,000 protesters, satellite dishes as unrest spreads 10/29/2001 World Tribune, Falls Church, VA: From a spookland site. The CIA is rumored to be involved in this unrest.

Tehran gripped by worst rioting since revolution 10/27/2001 Independent, UK

16 kg of morphine seized in Torbat-e Jaam 10/25/2001 IRNA

10 kg of opium, 10 rifles seized, four arrested in Fars prov. 10/25/2001 IRNA, Iran

US business lobby calls for lifting of sanctions against Iran 10/25/2001 IRNA, Iran

Ebola-type disease kills 12 Iranians 10/21/2001 IRNA, Iran

U.S.-led attacks "big blunder", precursor to America's collapse 10/18/2001 IRNA, Iran

Iran fears US may not 'finish the job' - FT 10/16/2001 IRNA, Iran

Halt war, says ayatollah 10/16/2001 The Guardian

Iran Denies Claims of Terrorists' Presence 10/12/2001 People's Daily: Iran on Thursday vehemently rejected a US claim that the Islamic republic was sheltering several terrorists, denouncing the charge as "baseless and unfounded". Iran's state IRNA news agency quoted an unidentified official as making the response to Venice Canistraro, the chief of counter- terrorist operations of the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), who reportedly said on Wednesday that seven people in a 22- men list of the U.S. "most wanted terrorists" were believed to be in Iran.

Arab allies mum about Iran links to Bin Laden 10/10/2001 World Tribune, US

Russia, Iran sign military cooperation accord 10/2/2001 AFP

Police seize 1.2 tons of narcotics in Golestan province 9/30/2001 IRNA

PARA VERTE MEJOR. Un estudio a cerca de la presencia de la mujer negra en la televisión cubana. 9/28/2001 IRNA, Iran

Iran Refuses To Help 'Disgusting' Americans 9/27/2001 New York Post

Iran Seeks U.N.-Led Coalition 9/25/2001 AP



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