Shiite politician denies Iran’s role in Iraq’s violence
An Iraqi powerful Shiite politician rejected on Sunday the U.S. accusations against Iran that it is fomenting violence in the war-torn country.”These are only accusations made by the U.S.-led coalition forces. I think such accusations need more evidences to prove their allegations,” Abul Aziz al-Hakim said in a joint press conference with the Shiite Vice President Adel Abdul Mahdi. “They (Iranians) have long history in supporting the Iraqi people and this is their official stands which we can mention without any hesitation,” Hakim told reporters….
International community urges Lebanese to fill presidency
Daily Star – Lebanon – Beirut,Lebanon
Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi warned over the weekend that
a civil war in Lebanon is imminent unless the Lebanese reach a consensus
Ahmadinejad rules out Iran nuclear concessions
by Staff Writers
Tehran (AFP) Nov 21, 2007
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad ruled out on Wednesday giving “the slightest concession” in the country’s nuclear standoff with the West.
He spoke as confusion emerged over a meeting between Tehran and the European Union, with an Iranian official saying it was set for next week and EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana’s spokeswoman saying no date had yet been decided.
Analysis: No more oranges for Iran
by Stefan Nicola
Berlin (UPI) Nov 21, 2007
Europe is increasingly willing to agree to harsher economic sanctions against Iran, which seems to be the price to pay to prevent a U.S. military strike against the Islamic republic.
Bush plays down WWIII warning
by Staff Writers
Washington (AFP) Nov 20, 2007
US President George W. Bush on Tuesday played down his warning of “World War III” if Iran gets nuclear arms but refused to rule out using force to keep Tehran from getting an atomic weapons.
Outside View: Iran nuclear divisions
by Pyotr Goncharov
Moscow (UPI) Nov 21, 2007
For the first time, divisions within the Iranian political elite over its nuclear program are starting to emerge into the open.
Former presidents Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani and Mohammad Khatami have warned the nation, albeit in low-key tones, that the escalation of tension around the nuclear program is dangerous and is threatening a confrontation between Iran and the world community.
Iran, Syria call for support for Palestinian nation
Tehran Times – Iran
TEHRAN (IRNA) — President Mahmud Ahmadinejad and his Syrian counterpart
President Bashar Assad in a telephone conversation on Sunday emphasized the
need to …
Tehran, Syria slam Annapolis on verge of peace conference
WorldNetDaily – Grants Pass,OR,USA
To underscore Syria’s continued close relationship with Iran, Syria’s
President Bashar Assad allowed Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to
publish in an …
U.S. blames Iran-backed group for Baghdad bombing
Paul Tait, Reuters
Iranian-backed militants were behind a bombing that killed 13 Iraqis at a Baghdad pet market, the U.S. military said on Saturday, raising concerns that Shi’ite militias might be switching tactics. U.S. military spokesman Rear Admiral Gregory Smith said it appeared the Shi’ite militants wanted Friday’s bombing, the deadliest attack in Baghdad in two months after a lull in violence, to look like the work of al Qaeda….
The Al Qaeda Exaggeration
Posted: 24 Nov 2007 03:34 PM CST
by Larry C. Johnson
The foreign fighter and Iranian myths blew up in the Bush Administration?s face in a big way this week. Despite repeated declarations over the last year that the violence racking Iraq is the result of Al Qaeda operations and influence and Iranian meddling, the facts on the ground do not support these claims. The U.S. Army confirmed this week that the foreign fighters constitute a small fraction of the insurgent activity and that most of insurgent activity is the handiwork of Iraqi Sunnis
Preventing the Impending War on Iran
Posted: 24 Nov 2007 03:23 PM CST
by Marjorie Cohn
Rhetoric flowing out of the White House indicates the Bush administration is planning a military attack on Iran. Officials in Saudi Arabia, a close Bush ally, think the handwriting is on the wall. “George Bush’s tone makes us think he has decided what he is going to do,” according to Rihab Massoud, Prince Bandar ben Sultan’s right-hand man.
Shiite politician denies Iran’s role in Iraq’s violence
Xinhua – China
Previously, US officials frequently accused Iran of providing Shiite
militia in Iraq with weapons and training. Iran denied the accusations. …
Ecuador seeks relations with Iran
PRESS TV – Tehran,Iran
Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa Delgado has stressed the importance of
boosting relations with Iran in political and economic fields. …
Iran’s navy to carry out military maneuvers in Feb. 25 Nov 2007 Iran’s navy commander said on Saturday that his forces will launch military maneuvers in Hormuz Strait and Gulf of Oman in February to exercise their naval capabilities, the official IRNA news agency reported. Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari told reporters that the military exercises, code named, “Ettehad 86,” or “Unity 86,” will continue for a week.
Iran completes enrichment process 24 Nov 2007 The director of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization says Tehran has completed the enrichment process and can produce its own nuclear fuel. Gholam-Reza Aqazadeh said the pellets applicable in the 40-megawatt Arak heavy water research reactor have been produced based on existing standards.
Noam Chomsky On U.S. Policy Towards Iran
“Suppose it was true that Iran is helping insurgents in Iraq. I mean, wasn’t the United States helping insurgents when the Russians invaded Afghanistan? Did we think there was anything wrong with that? I mean, Iraq’s a country that was invaded and is under military occupation. You can’t have a serious discussion about whether someone else is interfering in it. The basic assumption underlying the discussion is that we own the world.”
Manufacturing Consent For War With Iran?
US blames Iran-backed group for Baghdad bombing:
Iranian-backed militants were behind a bombing that killed 13 Iraqis at a Baghdad pet market, the U.S. military said on Saturday, raising concerns that Shi’ite militias might be switching tactics.
Iran hints it could halt nuclear enrichment for a quid pro quo:
“We don’t trust the United States,” he told McClatchy Newspapers after the IAEA Board of Governors finished its latest round of talks on Iran’s nuclear program. “We could suspend nuclear enrichment. We did it before for two and half years. But it wasn’t enough then, and wouldn’t be enough now. We will not suspend enrichment again because there is no end to what the United States will demand.”
US Talk on Iran: Tough, Hint of Outreach
The Associated Press –
A look at some of the statements since January: ___ “The Iranians clearly
believe that we are tied down in Iraq, that they have the initiative, …
Iran in Crosshairs as Fuel Delivery to Gulf Forces Increases
Stefano Ambrogi of Reuters reports: “The US military has stepped up chartering of tankers and requests for extra fuel in the US Central Command area, which includes the Gulf, shipping and oil industry sources say.”
War Is Peace, Sanctions Are Diplomacy
The White House is pressing ahead with its stated goal of persuading the UN
Security Council to pass far-reaching sanctions to punish Iran for refusing
to suspend its nuclear research program. Sanctions are what President George
W. Bush is referring to when he pledges to nervous US allies that he intends
to “continue to work together to solve this problem diplomatically.” The
non-diplomatic solution in this framing of the “problem,” presumably, would
be airstrikes on nuclear facilities in the Islamic Republic.
Carah Ong details the dangers of this framing, and suggests a pathway out of
it, in her essay, “War Is Peace, Sanctions Are Diplomacy,” now available in
Middle East Report Online:
Venezuela: OPEC Should Become a Political Actor against Imperialism
Venezuela’s President Chavez, Iran’s President Amadinejad, and Saudia Arabia’s King Abdullah at the 3rd OPEC Summit in Riadh. (AP) Caracas, November 19, 2007 (venezuelanalysis.com) – The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries …
Iraq: Iran’s ME role ‘significant’
PRESS TV – IRAN
Iraq’s IAEA Ambassador Tariq Aqrawi has urged world powers especially the West to respect Iran’s important status in the Middle East. Western powers should admit Iran plays an effective role in the volatile region, the envoy said in an interview with the IRNA in Vienna. “Iran is not Iraq and its condition is not comparable to that of Iraq before the American invasion,” Aqrawi said regarding the US war threats…
U.S. Navy steps up fuel deliveries to Gulf forces 23 Nov 2007 The U.S. military has stepped up chartering of tankers and requests for extra fuel in the U.S. Central Command area, which includes the Gulf, shipping and oil industry sources say. A Gulf oil industry source said the charters suggested there would be high naval activity, possibly including a demonstration to Iran that the U.S. Navy will protect the Strait of Hormuz oil shipping route during tensions over Tehran’s nuclear programme.
Iran hints it could halt nuclear enrichment for a quid pro quo 23 Nov 2007 Iran’s ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency said Friday that his country could suspend uranium enrichment if the United States and Western Europe agreed to acknowledge that its nuclear program was peaceful.
Iran warns sanctions talk may halt nuclear cooperation 23 Nov 2007 Iran on Friday accused Western nations seeking harsher U.N. sanctions against it of adding “fuel to the flame” and said this could halt its steps to clarify nuclear activity to U.N. inspectors.
Iran will pile ‘tsunamis of resistance’ on enemies 23 Nov 2007 The chief of the IRGC has warned that the enemies will have to suffer the tsunamis of resistance if they continue to plot against Iran. Brigadier General Mohammad-Ali Ja’fari said on Friday the Iranian nation is ready to fend off any attacks from the West. “Our enemies should know that although Iran has so far been patient with the West, this is the calm before the storm,” he cautioned.
Sadrists: Will Purge Mahdi Army Reject Iranian Troops for Iraq …
By Juan Cole(Juan Cole)
Sadrist leader Baha’ al-A’raji also called for electoral reform and rejected an Iranian plan to have Iranian troops replace American ones in Iraq. (The Sadrists are Iraqi nativists and usually have bad to indifferent relations with …
A plan to attack Iran swiftly and from above —A bombing campaign has been in the works for months – a blistering air war that would last anywhere from one day to two weeks 22 Nov 2007 Massive, devastating air strikes, a full dose of “shock and awe” with hundreds of bunker-busting bombs slicing through concrete at more than a dozen nuclear sites across Iran is no longer just the idle musing of military planners and uber-hawks. Although air strikes don’t seem imminent as the U.S.-Iranian drama unfolds, planning for a bombing campaign and preparing for the geopolitical blowback has preoccupied military and political councils for months.
US general says Iran helping stop Iraq bloodshed 21 Nov 2007 A US general [Lieutenant General James Dubik] on Wednesday acknowledged Iran’s role in helping quell the bloodshed in Iraq, saying Tehran had contributed to stopping the flow of arms across the border into the country.
Iran says UN sanctions are invalid and warns it will resist pressure to freeze enrichment:
The chief Iranian delegate to the International Atomic Energy Agency, said Security Council resolutions demanding a stop to enrichment have “no legal basis.” And he accused Washington of making a political issue of what he maintained was a program only meant to produce electricity.
Iran warns of domino effect of nuclear attack :
Iran warned today that an attack on its nuclear facilities would trigger a “domino” effect across the Middle East as deeply divided world powers met to review Teheran’s co-operation with United Nations resolutions.
Ankara inks power pact with Tehran over US objections:
Turkey on Tuesday signed an agreement with neighboring Iran for joint power-production projects despite US pressure against investment in the Islamic Republic.
Bush: I would understand if Israel chose to attack Iran :
The United States lacks sufficient intelligence on Iran’s nuclear facilities at this time, which prevents it from initiating a military strike against them, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has told European politicians and diplomats with whom she has recently met.
Iran’s expanding influence
Ibrahim Nawar, Al-Ahram Weekly
…In its modern history Iran has never had such an influential role in the Middle East as now. The late Iranian shah’s dream of making Iran a regional superpower collapsed with the fall of Baghdad Pact in 1958. With the rise of Iran’s religious leaders and their victory in Tehran in 1979, the dream was revived, allied with the temptation of mobilising Shia communities in Arab countries. Since the fall of Saddam and the occupation of Iraq by the US in 2003, new political realities emerged. It is difficult to believe that it was by chance, not by choice, that Iran became the most powerful stakeholder in Iraq. The Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI) — the umbrella organisation of Shia political groups — doesn’t hide its deep loyalty to Tehran. Iran, rather than Jordan, has become the main trading partner of Iraq. In 2006, it is estimated that Iranian exports to Iraq reached over $5 billion and are increasing, with the Iranian Bandar Khomeini port becoming the main export point to Iraq….
IAEA chief set to defend Iran’s progress 21 Nov 2007 The U.N. nuclear watchdog chief is set to urge full backing for an Iran transparency plan at an agency governors meeting on Thursday after Western powers said Tehran must do more to allay fears about its atomic agenda.
Can Chávez push oil prices to $200?
Christian Science Monitor – Boston,MA,USA
Venezuela’s president says he’ll team up with Iran to hurt US economy.
Analysts call it bravado. Caracas, Venezuela – – Venezuelan President
Hugo Chávez …
US Cmdr Sees Iran Influence in Iraq
The Associated Press –
“But what I can’t tell you is are these munitions that have recently been
brought into Iraq or have they been here for a while,” he added. …
Gates Invokes “Military Action” Against Iran :
US Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Tuesday that a military strike against Iran remains an option should the Islamic nation continue to defy international opinion and continue to pursue its nuclear program.
Chavez Warns Europeans On Backing US Over Iran Nuclear Standoff
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez on Tuesday urged Europe not to side with the United States on imposing a third round of sanctions against Iran for its continued defiance of international calls to end its nuclear program.
Iran Says U.S. Lacks Support for More Sanctions at UN Bill Varner ;
The U.S. and its European allies lack the support to impose further international sanctions on Iran over its nuclear program, the Iranian government’s new envoy to the United Nations said.
GOP Jewish group polls on Iran strike :
A U.S. conservative group led by major Republican Jews is testing for reactions to a potential Israeli strike on Iran
Look Who’s Downplaying Iran’s Nuclear Threat:
There is no doubt that many Israelis had hoped that the United States would attack and perhaps destroy Iran’s nuclear military installations-not because they are concerned about its threat to the existence of Israel, but because they are aware that a nuclear Iran would be able to challenge Israel’s military supremacy in the Middle East.
Iran’s path to greatness through defiance of West – Ahmadinejad :
Iran’s president said on Wednesday that the country would gain “a greatness that is 100 times more precious than nuclear energy,” if it withstands pressure from the West over its nuclear program.
Rumors of (More) War: US Attack on Iran Gains Credence
by Dave Lindorff
As someone who has been writing about this crazed administration’s plans to launch an attack on Iran now for over a year, I have always noted that the real sign that it might happen would be when oil industry analysts started to worry about it.
That’s because the oil industry is probably more plugged into the inner sanctum of the Bush administration than any other entity. If the analysts, who have their fingers on the pulse of the oil industry, start worrying that an attack could happen—with the resulting shutdown of oil shipments through the Persian Gulf, from which the world gets roughly a third of its oil—then we need to take the threat very seriously.
Fine-Tuning the Sell Job for the Next War
Source: Mother Jones, November 19, 2007
“The basis of the whole thing was, ‘we’re going to go into Iran and what do we have to do to get you guys to go along with it,’” said Laura Sonnenmark, a participant in a recent focus group apparently funded by the Republican-associated lobbying group Freedom’s Watch. Sonnenmark, a “focus group regular,” said the moderator “used lots of catch phrases, like ‘victory’ and ‘failure is not an option.’” She added, “I’ve never seen a moderator who was so persistent in manipulating and leading the participants.” The final questions of the session were: “How would you feel if Hillary [Clinton] bombed Iran? How would you feel if George Bush bombed Iran? And how would you feel if Israel bombed Iran?” Neither the firm involved, Martin Focus Groups, nor Freedom’s Watch would confirm that the organization funded the focus group. But focus group participants were handed a flier with a Freedom’s Watch logo, and the group has advocated for confronting Iran, organizing forums on the “threat” posed by the country, and running ads calling the Iranian president a “terrorist.”
Israel’s Syrian Airstrike Was Aimed at Iran
Analysis by Gareth Porter*
WASHINGTON – Until late October, the accepted explanation about the Sep. 6 Israeli airstrike in Syria, constructed in a series of press leaks from U.S. officials, was that it was prompted by dramatic satellite intelligence that Syria was building a nuclear facility with help from North Korea.
Iran: The Parthian Shot – www.ipsnews.net/new_focus/iran/index.asp
US officially asks Iran to attend talks on Iraq
Tehran Times – Iran
US ambassador to Iraq Ryan Crocker and his Iranian counterpart Hassan
Kazemi Qomi held face-to-face talks in May and July, and senior officials
from both …
Iran agrees new talks with US on Iraq
Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki
by Staff Writers
Tehran (AFP) Nov 20, 2007
Iran said on Tuesday it has agreed to a new round of talks with the United States on improving security in Iraq, despite mounting tensions between the two arch foes over Iran’s nuclear drive.
The announcement came after the United States said Iran has stemmed the flow of weapons and militants across the border amid a decrease in violence in its western neighbour.
Ebadi urges Iran to moderate nuclear stance
Tehran (AFP) Nov 19, 2007 – Iranian Nobel laureate Shirin Ebadi on Monday spoke out in a rare public criticism of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s nuclear policy, urging him to obey UN resolutions and soften his stance to avert the mounting threat of war. “We believe that using nuclear energy is every nation’s right but we have obvious rights other than nuclear energy including security, peace and welfare,”
Venezuela’s Chavez warns Europeans not to side with US on Iran …
International Herald Tribune – France
AP PARIS: Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez on Tuesday urged Europe not to
side with the United States over Iran’s nuclear program, dismissing as a
“big lie” …
The Middle East has had a secretive nuclear power in its midst for years
George Monbiot, The Guardian
George Bush and Gordon Brown are right: there should be no nuclear weapons in the Middle East. The risk of a nuclear conflagration could be greater there than anywhere else. Any nation developing them should expect a firm diplomatic response. So when will they impose sanctions on Israel? Like them, I believe that Iran is trying to acquire the bomb. I also believe it should be discouraged, by a combination of economic pressure and bribery, from doing so (a military response would, of course, be disastrous). I believe that Bush and Brown – who maintain their nuclear arsenals in defiance of the non-proliferation treaty – are in no position to lecture anyone else. But if, as Bush claims, the proliferation of such weapons “would be a dangerous threat to world peace”, why does neither man mention the fact that Israel, according to a secret briefing by the US Defence Intelligence Agency, possesses between 60 and 80 of them?…
US and Iran to hold more talks on Iraq
Kansas City Star – MO,USA
President Bush called Iran, Iraq and North Korea the “axis of evil” in
his 2002 State of the Union address. Iranians have referred to the United
States as …
A Warning Shot For Iran, via Syria
By Gareth Porter
Until late October, the accepted explanation about the September 6 Israeli air strike in Syria, constructed from a series of press leaks from US officials, was that it was prompted by dramatic satellite intelligence that Syria was building a nuclear facility with help from North Korea.
Iran and Venezuela vow united front :
The presidents of Venezuela and Iran have promised a united front against the US, predicting that the country was nearing the end of its world domination with the weakening greenback.
Europeans, Let Us Prevent the War Against Iran
Liberation has published this European call to peace and disarmament by Former French Prime Minister and European MP Michel Rocard, Israeli Committee for a Middle East without Weapons of Mass Destruction member and Network for a Non-Nuclear Mediterranean executive secretary Yehuda Atai, and president of Citizens’ Action for Nuclear Disarmament, Jean-Marie Matagne.
Ebadi urges Iran to moderate nuclear stance
by Staff Writers
Tehran (AFP) Nov 19, 2007
Iranian Nobel laureate Shirin Ebadi on Monday spoke out in a rare public criticism of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s nuclear policy, urging him to obey UN resolutions and soften his stance to avert the mounting threat of war.
Walker’s World: Iran’s baby bust
by Martin Walker
Washington (UPI) Nov 19, 2007
The most dramatic demographic shift in human history appears to be taking place in today’s Iran. Thirty years ago, as the shah was being driven into exile and the Islamic republic was being established, the fertility rate of Iranian women was 6.5 — the average number of children born to an Iranian woman of childbearing age.
If USA attempts the madness of invading Iran or attacking Venezuela again…
By: Vincent Bevins
“We are witnessing constant threats against Iran. I think OPEC should strengthen itself in this capacity and demand respect for the sovereignty of our nations, if the developed world wants a guaranteed supply of oil.’’
USA threatening Iran in bid to control major oil producing states in OPEC
By: RIA Novosti
Chavez said Venezuela would pursue a peaceful nuclear program … many other states would be compelled to do the same, since it was crucial to avert an energy crisis which is threatening the world as energy resources decline and oil prices soar.