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Thread: Why the US wants to delegitimize the Iranian elections

  1. #91
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cali View Post

    My stance? Could the US have had a role in hand-picking Mousavi to oppose Amidemijahd? Sure. But it is highly doubtful , in my opinion, because I think if the US were going to meddle, they would have picked a more pro-democracy candidate. And could the US have possible anticipated or created the curent situation in Iran? Absolutely not. This movement is based on Mousavi's platform resonating with the Iranians and them going into action to ensure a fair election.
    Cali, first I'd like to thank you for all these posts and links. You've provided me with a valuable resource (and made me join Twitter, damn you.)

    Several bones here -

    The US has almost NEVER backed a pro-democracy candidate in our meddling with other nations politics. NEVER. Our supreme NeoCons have been supporting the worse right-wing militarists in the world for decades. Even in the Cold War antics, the US threw most of their cash behind forces like the Catholic Church and extreme ring-wing parties in Western Europe which could guarantee a controlled result rather than freedom.

    Now, I do believe that the USA has been feeding culture to young Iranis - culture they are very hungry for.

    [There is a long CIA history of creating cultural possibilities that then become the Alternative to the young. There is a great article by Havel? Brodsky? about how Rock and Roll killed Communism. It's now admitted by the CIA that they supported contemporary art magazines in London that were then shipped secretly to Eastern Europe.

    Some other time we can talk about the meteoric rise of Slumdog Millionaire and its almost subliminal message to Muslims and anti-Muslims.

    The ironic thing is how cheaply this sort of ops is, as compared to the money we waste in arms trades and friendships with nasty leaders.]


    I do think that we have been supporting pockets of alternative culture in Iran. I happen to think that is a good use of our covert dollar. Iran is largely educated. So were the Communist states. An educated, young, large population who don't have work is a very powerful tool (just ask any Saudi extremist.)

    I can see very well how the US would back Mousavi. He's basically another right-wing stooge who the young are suddenly inamoured of (for no good reason that I can see.) We, the US, don't support actual freedom fighters or reformers - never have. We need to have a man with an iron fist who will accept our influence. Mousavi seems too perfect in many ways.

    Now, did we create Iran's problems? No. This mess is all theirs. Did we create their corrupt system and morally bankrupted leaders? No. Their theo-fascist state? Nope, that's all on them. But would we like to have a Musharif, a military dictator, in place in Iran who will consult us rather than hit the red button? Hell Yes!

    There is no way we could have hand-picked Mousavi and his changing message (pardon me if I don't trust it. The man has a history of supporting repression. Suddenly he has changed? Yeah, uh-huh.) But the culture behind his support is very connected to Western ideals which I'm sure we have a hand in.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kingcap72 View Post
    What I want to know is what possible benefit would the U.S. gain from destabilizing Iran now? Iraq is barely hanging on by a thread of stability, after we blew it to shit, so why destabilize Iran and create an even bigger headache in the Middle East?
    Because if they are fighting internally, we don't have to fight them externally.

    Amadinajab has thumbed his nose at the USA because he very well knows we do not have the resources to deal with Iran. We cannot stop their nukes program. We are SOOL.

    Before the Bush Fiasco or a Presidency, all the pieces were in place for Iran to have a soft revolution. It was/is inevitable. Iran wants a civilization. It wants an educated public. But it wants them to never question Islam or the supreme ruler. That situation never goes well.

    Bush literally killed any chance of less painful reform in Iran. The reactionary theofascists started to rule again the first day of the Iraqi Invasion.

    Now, this conflict in Iran would have happened organically without us. The USA (Again!) played the situation badly and the results will be more bloody, more catastrophic, than if we hadn't spilled all that right-wing, Axis of Evil bullshit around for 8 years.

    Still, the internal conflict gains us some ground and some time.
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    i still think the US' role is being overstated and given too much importance. the fact that the educated and reform-minded iranians and the pro traditional Establishment alike are backing mousavi (who's not so great, we agree on that) is because of the much larger threat posed by ahmedinejad and co. this is more about an internal shift in iranian politics. this isn't the cold war anymore, you can't apply the same criteria that you did for US interventions up to 9/11 on this, it's no longer about left-right, US supporting a military leader (mousavi isn't military). and iran isn't pakistan.


    another piece from msnbc, more reza aslan (who, let's face it, is as sexay as he is brilliant)
    Rachel Maddow Show
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    Quote Originally Posted by olivia View Post
    Because if they are fighting internally, we don't have to fight them externally.

    Amadinajab has thumbed his nose at the USA because he very well knows we do not have the resources to deal with Iran. We cannot stop their nukes program. We are SOOL.

    Before the Bush Fiasco or a Presidency, all the pieces were in place for Iran to have a soft revolution. It was/is inevitable. Iran wants a civilization. It wants an educated public. But it wants them to never question Islam or the supreme ruler. That situation never goes well.

    Bush literally killed any chance of less painful reform in Iran. The reactionary theofascists started to rule again the first day of the Iraqi Invasion.

    Now, this conflict in Iran would have happened organically without us. The USA (Again!) played the situation badly and the results will be more bloody, more catastrophic, than if we hadn't spilled all that right-wing, Axis of Evil bullshit around for 8 years.

    Still, the internal conflict gains us some ground and some time.
    An unstable Iran doesn't benefit the U.S. in the big picture. With Iraq still in a position to fall into complete chaos at the drop of a hat, having an unstable Iran creates bigger problems. Iran's internal conflict doesn't gain the U.S. any ground, which is why the U.S. hasn't openly backed the opposition movement. Because by doing so we would just make matters worse.

    I like to blame Dubya for as many things as possible, but you can't blame him for Iran not being able to have a less painful reform. Iran is run by an oppressive regime, so any reform was always going to be painful. And if Iran collapses into a bloody civil war it may spill over into Iraq and create an even bigger clusterfuck.

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    Quote Originally Posted by olivia View Post
    Cali, first I'd like to thank you for all these posts and links. You've provided me with a valuable resource (and made me join Twitter, damn you.)
    No problem! I've been following this whole thing really closely and I've learned a lot in the process. Its pretty fascinating.

    Quote Originally Posted by olivia View Post
    The US has almost NEVER backed a pro-democracy candidate in our meddling with other nations politics. NEVER. Our supreme NeoCons have been supporting the worse right-wing militarists in the world for decades. Even in the Cold War antics, the US threw most of their cash behind forces like the Catholic Church and extreme ring-wing parties in Western Europe which could guarantee a controlled result rather than freedom.
    Right, I agree. I looked into the issue and realized that history bore this out- see my explanation of how things went down in Afghanistan

    Quote Originally Posted by olivia View Post
    But the culture behind his support is very connected to Western ideals which I'm sure we have a hand in.
    Absolutely- but I don't find anything suspicious in that. The US pretty much drives the culture around the world through our entertainment industry, and much of the tech sector operates or began in the US.

    On another note:
    The State Department employee who asked Twitter to postpone their maintanence is really fascinating. He was actually hired 'specifically to advise the State Department on young people in the Middle East and how to "counter-radicalize" them.' There's a great profile of him here:
    Profile: The Kid at the State Department Who Figured Out the Iranians Should Be Allowed to Keep Tweeting - mediabistro.com: BayNewser

    Everyone should watch his interview here- he spent a lot of time in Iran, and he really describes the youth in Iran well:
    [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4lKA_NkHuJ8[/youtube]

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    I heard Jared Cohen on Fresh Air or something on NPR a couple of months ago. His book sounds great. He definitely debunks a few myths about the youth of the Mideast.

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    I just sat through that old fuckers BS speech. What a bunch of propagandic shit. He seriously pulled a but....but....clinton for Waco.

    I was expecting him to go into full 9/11 truther mode.

    He actually said something along the lines of "poor basij and what the protesters are doing to them". DUDE your precious basij are the ones beating the crap out of the protesters!

    This will not end well
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    [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H6k6FO9gah8[/youtube]

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    So you say the neocons are out of power?


    June 23, 2009
    Time to Worry

    Dennis Ross Moves to the White House

    By GARY LEUPP
    There was a time when the most ridiculous accusations against Iraq as prepared by the White House Iraq Group of neocon-led propagandists were accepted by the entire Washington power elite. Remember? It was not so long ago. Iraq and al-Qaeda were in cahoots and Saddam had weapons of mass destruction powerfully threatening the world. A significant minority of intelligent Americans doubted these charges, the essence of the case for war, and for anyone paying attention, they have long since been exposed as lies. But respectable politicians and leading columnists, makers of public opinion, parroted them for a certain crucial delusion-forming interval as obvious truths.

    Now again we have the leadership of both political parties with much of the journalistic establishment in tow promoting what will likely be exposed in the near term as another slough of lies, this time about Iran. At the center of them is this: Iran has a nuclear weapons program threatening Israel with nuclear holocaust.
    That’s a staggering allegation, and designed to be so. It’s the son of the earlier allegation born of the White House Iraq Group propaganda team: Let’s not let the “smoking gun” be a mushroom cloud over New York City. Sheer fear-mongering.

    Iraq didn’t threaten New York. The U.S. threatened, invaded and occupied Iraq, slaughtering at least tens of thousands in the process. And Iran does not threaten anyone with a nuclear weapon. It should be repeated again and again: the National Intelligence Estimate concerning the question of Iran’s nuclear program, representing the consensus of the 16 different U.S. intelligence agencies in 2007 concluded in “high confidence” that Iran does not even have an active nuclear weapons program. (The report appeared after nearly a year’s delay due to apparent obstruction by Dick Cheney’s office, the neocon headquarters).

    Unfortunately, regime change in Iran is the single most urgent, outstanding item on the neocon agenda left unfulfilled after eight years of Bush-era empowerment. Its proponents refuse to allow a mere change of administrations to deflect them from their goal. Hence somehow a neocon has insinuated himself into the center of Iran policy, first as a Hillary Clinton advisor and “diplomat,” and now as an advisor to the president working for the National Security Agency.

    Dennis Ross is an NIE-denier. With no real expertise on Iran or Persian linguistic competence, and no understanding of nuclear science---but lots of experience in U.S.-Israeli relations and settler advocacy garnering him the nickname “Israel’s lawyer”---Ross was principal author of an op-ed piece in the Wall Street Journal eight months after the NIE appeared.

    Sensationalistically entitled “Everybody Needs to Worry about Iran,” it alluded blithely, offering no evidence, to the Iranian regime’s drive to become “a nuclear state” and announced a drive to “mobilize the power of a united American public in opposition.” Co-signators included Richard Holbrooke, currently Obama’s special envoy to “Af-Pak;” former CIA director and Project for a New American Century operative James R. Woolsey and Mark D. Wallace, a former UN ambassador who heads up with Woolsey and others something called “United Against a Nuclear Iran.” (All were major proponents of the Iraq War.)
    This group, in other words, wants to mobilize and unite U.S. public opinion against the consensus of the intelligence community about the nature of empirical reality, substituting for it the need to worry about Iran.

    I can’t help but recall the insightful words of Hermann Goering, interviewed during the Nuremberg trials. “The people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country.” It worked very well after 9-11, when the masses could really be terrified and manipulated by the color-coded alerts and grim warnings about mushroom clouds over New York. Bush went to war with Iraq with solid domestic support generated by fear.

    The terror mongering strategy may work less well now, after so many lies have been exposed. And the Iran attack advocates are emphasizing Iran’s threat not to the U.S. (that is, you can’t realistically tell Americans the U.S. itself is in danger of Iranian attack) but to (nuclear) Israel. It’s an “existential” threat to Israel which, in their more dramatic moments, the attack advocates embellish into a second Shoah threatening global Jewry.

    This is a risky strategy in that it assumes that popular zeal for Israel rooted in the Christian-Zionist community in the U.S. exceeds the domestic inclination towards non-interventionism during this era of military over-extension and global economic crisis, and that the ruling class in general including the intelligence community and Pentagon will go along. It assumes that despite the indignation aroused by the AIPAC spying scandal, the neocon sabotage of the Charles Freeman’s appointment as director of the National Intelligence Council, and Jane Harman’s smug dismissal of her exposure as Israeli agent as normative American political practice the Lobby and its arguments retain their persuasive power over time.

    Maybe mounting diversity in this country, growing exposure, lingering images of the Gaza blitz are threatening all that. But maybe such things only increase the Bomb Iran Faction’s desperation.

    Ross is known to favor a policy of ultimatums to Iran followed by a naval blockade to prevent gasoline imports, then a blockade of oil exports, then massive air strikes on the nuclear facilities and military facilities. The goal would be not only the crippling of the nuclear program for a few years but the destruction of the military and government.

    Ross’s change of jobs was announced in the midst of the street demonstrations following the contested election results in Iran last week. He will now literally move into the White House and provide day to day counsel to Obama on how to “deal” with a leadership he wants to topple.

    During Obama’s very first press conference as president-elect November 7, when asked to respond to Iranian President Ahmadinejad’s letter congratulating him on his victory, he sidestepped the question but took the opportunity to declare, clearly by scripted forethought: “Iran’s development of a nuclear weapon, I believe, is unacceptable. And we have to mount an international effort to prevent that from happening.”
    George Bush had ignored the NIE, promising Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert he would do so soon after its annoying appearance. Obama has been doing so as well, acting as though an ongoing Iranian nuclear weapons program is an established fact, even while his National Security Advisor James Jones upholds the report. It is as though the new administration has decided it can maybe take on AIPAC on one issue (the West Bank settlements) but cannot challenge it in its drive to use U.S. power to bomb Iran on Israel’s behalf.

    Everybody needs to worryabout Dennis Ross having the president’s ear, day to day in the Obama White House, promoting an attack on Iran.

    Gary Leupp is Professor of History at Tufts University, and Adjunct Professor of Religion. He is the author of Servants, Shophands and Laborers in in the Cities of Tokugawa Japan; Male Colors: The Construction of Homosexuality in Tokugawa Japan; and Interracial Intimacy in Japan: Western Men and Japanese Women, 1543-1900. He is also a contributor to CounterPunch's merciless chronicle of the wars on Iraq, Afghanistan and Yugoslavia, Imperial Crusades.
    He can be reached at: gleupp@granite.tufts.edu

    Gary Leupp: Dennis Ross Moves to the White House

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    Oh good grief.

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    Will the U.S. Support Terrorists to Destabilize Iran?

    New America Media, News Analysis, William O. Beeman, Posted: Jul 07, 2008

    Editor’s note: All attempts to justify a military attack on Iran have failed and the US is now looking at supporting fringe and terrorist groups to destabilize the country. It won’t work, says NAM contributing writer, William O. Beeman, but it will destabilize the region for years to come. Beeman is Professor and Chair of the Department of Anthropology at the University of Minnesota. He is President of the Middle East Section of the American Anthropological Association. The second edition of his book, The “Great Satan” vs. the “Mad Mullahs”: How the United States and Iran Demonize Each Other, has just been published by the University of Chicago Press.

    Correction note: Due to an editing error a previous post of this story mentioned Mr. Michael Rubin was part of a conference entitled "The Unknown Iran: Another Case for Federalism?" in 2005 and he was not. We sincerely apologize for the error.

    Elements of the Bush administration have begun to resemble semi-insane Captain Queeg in "The Caine Mutiny" with regard to Iran. Reckless and obsessive to destroy Iran’s regime, they fondle their ball bearings, and pursue any scheme that they believe will get rid of the mullahs before the inauguration of the new American president in January 2009.

    In desperation, they have turned to supporting fringe-level ethnic separatists—all of whom are terrorists and enemies of the United States who are also hostile to Iran. This strategy is truly the last gasp of a failed Middle East policy. It is ill-conceived, and if continued, will foment continued violence in the region for years without affecting the Iranian regime in any significant way.

    Iran’s continuing nuclear program remains the Bush administration’s prime bulwark against the country, but it is a very weak bulwark. Yet there is still no evidence whatever for an Iranian nuclear weapons program. Last December’s National Intelligence Estimate stated clearly that no current nuclear military program exists. Moreover, Iran is on the verge of agreeing to discuss proposals with European powers for limiting their nuclear energy program. To this end, they are halting enrichment at current levels as a sign of goodwill. The Iranian press reports that Iranian leaders are urging acceptance of the European proposals, since they feel that the United States is trying to sabotage them in order to create a pretext for action against the country.

    Other accusations against Iran are equally feeble. Claims of its support for attacks against U.S. troops in Iraq have failed for lack of any evidence. Iran’s supposed “proxy” attacks on Israel through Lebanese Hezbollah and Palestinian Hamas strain credulity, since these two groups are acknowledged by all credible experts to formulate their political agendas independently from Iran.

    Continually frustrated in their attempts to launch any legitimate attack against Iran, Vice President Cheney and a group of die-hard neoconservatives hovering in and around his office, particularly his former Middle East adviser David Wurmser, have long been rumored to be engineering active support for dissident opposition groups who share their goal to overthrow the current Iranian regime. Many of these groups are aligned with non-Persian ethnic factions in Iran, notably Arabs, Kurds, Azerbaijanis and Baluchis. Serious analysts in the region have tended to dismiss these efforts as silly and ineffective. Nevertheless, neoconservative organizations such as the American Enterprise Institute, the Center for Near East Policy and the Hudson Institute have quietly championed the idea that Iran could be successfully dismembered along ethnic lines.

    The American Enterprise Institute has long been a hotbed for debate over these plans. In October 2005, it hosted a conference entitled “The Unknown Iran: Another Case for Federalism?” in which the specter of an ethnic dismemberment of Iran was raised. The AEI has subsequently been host to several conclaves where this idea of fomenting ethnic violence has been discussed, in which representatives from dissident groups are regularly invited to hold forth.

    The military continues to entertain the dismemberment of Iran and retired military officer and novelist Ralph Peters proposed the idea in the June 2006 issue of the Armed Forces Journal. His article, ”Blood Borders” champions national independence for every ethnic group in the Middle East, redrawing the borders of Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Turkey.

    The problem would not be so acute, except for the fact that these groups, now somewhat ineffective, would be truly bad news if provided with significant U.S. aid and weapons. They would never be effective at eliminating the Iranian government, but they could become a source of instability and violence throughout the region for years to come. Because they are basically all anti-American in their orientation, the United States will also be harmed if they are strengthened.

    More here



    Washington’s likely plans to restore the Iranian monarchy are foolhardy

    The United States is planning for “regime change” in Iran, and it may have already picked the new rulers of that country.
    The form of government would be a constitutional monarchy, with the head of state being Reza Pahlavi, son of the former Shah, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, who was deposed in the 1978-79 Islamic revolution.
    The Bush administration apparently has a handpicked American “plumber” ready to go in Iran, much like Ahmed Chalabi in Iraq. This is Sohrab “Rob” Sobhani, an Iranian-American associated with the neoconservatives in Washington. With Reza Pahlavi as Shah, the 40-ish Sobhani would presumably be prime minister or president.
    His promoter is American Enterprise Institute Freedom Chair Holder Michael Ledeen, who has written and lectured obsessively about regime change in Iran. Ledeen was reported by the Washington Post to be one of four advisers in regular consultation with White House strategist, Karl Rove. Ledeen and Sobhani recently established the Coalition for Democracy in Iran (CDI) to promote this regime change.
    Reza Pahlavi had been living quietly in Maryland until Sept. 11, when he began to address the Iranian community via the internet and satellite television. This prompted the Iranian community to dub him the “Internet Prince.”
    Rob Sobhani, who has known Reza Pahlavi since childhood, was actually born in Kansas. His doctorate, completed in 1987, dealt with Iranian-Israeli relations from 1948-88. He became a specialist in energy policy. He has had his finger in many pies in Washington, including consultation on the construction of an oil and gas pipeline across Afghanistan. Well-connected politically, he ran twice for the US Senate from Maryland as a Republican. Although his heritage is Iranian, he is far from being an expert on Iranian society, politics or economics. His move to the Washington area put him in close contact with his old friend, Reza Pahlavi.
    Sobhani’s interests in regime change are very clear and very consonant with American desires. They are largely commercial. Following his graduation from Georgetown, he became head of a Caspian Energy Consulting, a firm dealing with the transport and sale of Caspian oil. He has had his finger in many pies in Washington, including an active role on the construction of an oil and gas pipeline across Afghanistan. On March 5, 2001 in an article written with Pennsylvania State business professor, Fariborz Ghadar, he advocated a number of the policies that have since been carried out by the US, including containing the Taleban and Saddam Hussein. He also notes that supporting a secularization of Iran would lead to easier transport of Caspian oil through Iranian territory.
    Of equal importance, Sobhani also sees secularization of Iran as beneficial for Israel. This is not surprising, since Israel and Iran had excellent ties before the 1978-9 Islamic Revolution. The Iranian Jewish community is the oldest continuous Jewish community in the world. The community is as prominent in diaspora as in Iran, with members in powerful positions in the Israeli government and in American life, particularly in California. Elimination of the clerical regime in Iran would eliminate support for Hizbullah. It might even lead to renewed trade between Tehran and Tel Aviv.
    Ledeen, Sobhani and Morris Amitay, former director of the principal Israeli lobbying group, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) joined forces at the American Enterprise Institute in a seminar entitled The Future of Iran, in which they called for regime change. AIPAC has indicated support for the restoration of Reza Pahlavi to the throne, although they wish to remain in the background, as reported by Mark Perelman on May 16 in the New York Jewish Daily Forward. Perelman quotes one AIPAC official as stating that “the Jewish groups are telling Reza that they will give him private support and help arrange meetings with US officials,” Since Sept. 11, 2001, Sobhani has appeared widely in the media, urging the US government to support an internal revolution in Iran. His appearances can be seen as growing endorsement of his possible role as a future leader in a post-coup Iran, as his image is honed by the media-savvy Bush administration.
    Sobhani has pursued a ploy in order to give himself academic billing for television and the lecture circuit. He teaches one course at his alma mater, Georgetown University on Iran and Caspian Oil politics. On this basis he has claimed to be a “professor” at Georgetown. He is in fact an adjunct faculty member at the college, but here it is hard to know what kind of “adjunct” he is, since he never seems to be on campus. The chair of the department of government has tried in vain to get him to cease and desist in claiming this affiliation.
    Both Sobhani and Michael Ledeen of the American Enterprise Institute, with whom he has founded an organization, The Coalition for Democracy in Iran (CDI) are remarkably cagey about claims for the restoration of the monarchy. Their ambitions are clearly to restore the Pahlavi dynasty, but they are both exceptionally careful about making this pronunciation openly or in print. They are frequently photographed with Reza Pahlavi, and Sobhani has had a lifelong friendship with Reza. In some circles Sobhani is derisively referred to as “The Pretender’s Prime Minister.” Sobhani, when he refers to Reza, frequently calls him an “activist” rather than a future monarch.
    All three have connections with the media agency, Benador Associates, who manages both their op-ed placements and televison appearances. Eleana Benador represents Richard Perle, James Woolsey, Charles Krauthammer, Martin Kramer and other conservatives connected to the Bush administration. Pictures of Eleana Benador and Reza Pahlavi with Israeli supporter and AIPAC member Bob Guzzardi, and Middle East Forum head Daniel Pipes appear on Bob Guzzardi’s website, www.bobguzzardi.com.
    Sobhani and Ledeen clearly feel that the United States can produce an internal coup in Iran. Ledeen has said as much in The War Against the Terror Masters and many articles for the National Review Online, the Wall Street Journal and other media outlets.
    Ledeen and Sobhani expect to have the coup first, then present Reza Pahlavi as the emergent ruler. Ledeen said as much in a rally in Los Angeles for Iranian monarchists, saying in effect: Let’s have the revolution first, then worry about who will rule Iran. He put a price tag on the operation saying, “I think you can buy yourself free Iran today for $20 million.” What Ledeen, who has never traveled to Iran, and Sobhani don’t understand is that Iranians are deeply skeptical about American motives in the Middle East. They remember that the CIA engineered a counter-coup in 1953 which deposed a popular revolution against the Pahlavi regime. The counter-coup created an American puppet regime in Iran, which only came to an end in 1978-79 with the Islamic revolution. For such an operation to work, it can not be tied to an overt embracing of a restoration of the monarchy. Moreover, it cannot specifically espouse use of the People’s Mujahideen (MEK, MKO), the guerrilla movement opposing the Iranian government from Iraq. Both the Pahlavi regime and the mujahiddeen are widely opposed in Iran, even from people who would like to see clerical rule eliminated.
    Astonishing for Americans is the fact that many Iranians feel that the United States engineered the rise of Ayatollah Khomeini to power. The theory is that the American government felt that containment of the Soviet Union would best be effected by the establishment of a “Green Belt” (green is a sacred color in Islam) to confront the “godless Communists.” When the Shah became sick and unreliable, according to this theory, the United States traded the “crown for the turban.” The resulting new regime was seen to be just as repressive as the old one. However, it did prevent Communists from coming to the fore. Thus, for a large body of Iranians, Americans have always controlled the Iranian government. To have Reza Pahlavi return to power with American blessing would, for many Iranians, be a continuation of American interference in Iranian affairs.
    Added to this are the insults and damages that the United States has inflicted on Iran over the past two-and-a-half decades. Iranians will never forget that the United States tilted toward Iraq in the Iran-Iraq war. By all accounts, Iran would have won the war if the United States had not interfered. Moreover, it is widely known that the United States provided poison gas and other chemical weapons to Iraq during that conflict.
    Also regarded with bitterness are incidents like a downing of an Iranian plane by the United States during the Gulf War, an incident for which Washington never apologized. Economic sanctions against Iran are not debilitating, but they are a significant annoyance, and the continual insulting treatment of visa applicants and arrivals on American shores is humiliating for the well-educated, sophisticated Iranian citizenry. Such outrages as world-famous Iranian film-makers receiving major international rewards have been denied visas to come to the United States, or have been strip-searched at Kennedy Airport.
    Could a restored monarchy succeed in Iran? The answer is a qualified “yes,” with the very large caveat that America can not be involved in any way. If Reza Pahlavi, or any leader is to succeed in leading Iran, he or she must do so without overt US help. Once Iran is established on its own, not under an American thumb, the two nations may re-establish their relationship with some profit.
    The best model for reforming Iran is the carrot, not the stick. An example of this process is seen in the European Union, which has lured states into its fold with the promise of economic prosperity. The new states entering the EU have bent over backwards to reform criminal practice, economic practice, and human rights attitudes to gain membership. The best thing the United States could do is to re-establish diplomatic relations with Iran, get involved with commercial dealings, and give the Iranians some reason to undertake reforms ­ a better life in partnership with the West. In time, the younger generation, which makes up more than 75 percent of the population, will take over. Having democratic models close at hand, and some incentive, they will make the necessary changes themselves, without the CIA, or machinations from Washington.

    William O. Beeman (William_beeman@brown.edu) teaches anthropology and is Director of Middle East Studies at Brown University. He wrote this commentary for The Daily Star

    http://www.golshan.com/english/articles/20030613a.htm

    Son of shah says portesters defeat could lead to nuclear war

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    so did we agree this is where we're putting anything related to iran?

    if so, a break from crazy conspiracies for some smart humour (and hotness):
    reza aslan on the daily show with jon stewart:

    Reza Aslan | The Daily Show | Comedy Central
    I'm open to everything. When you start to criticise the times you live in, your time is over. - Karl Lagerfeld

  13. #103
    Elite Member Fluffy's Avatar
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    ^He was also on Rachel Maddow's show last night. When he stated that American hackers were hacking into Iranian regime websites 'n such, I was pretty surprised. Hacking in and deleting names of people the gov't is targeting. Good work hackers!

  14. #104
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    Freedom Rider: Selective Sympathy for Iran
    by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

    “There was no campaign to use Twitter as a tool to protest the killings and defend the Gazans right to live.”


    The scenes of Iranians protesting in the hundreds of thousands speak to the hearts of people all over the world. Anyone who fights for democracy has to applaud when people in any nation band together to make demands on their political system.

    Yet Americans must always be cognizant of the outright lies and manipulations that may cause them to act in error, even if they do so with good intentions. The potential pitfalls in reacting to Iran’s current political crisis are many and demand close attention.

    The corporate media behave in a fashion that requires us to question everything they present to us as fact. People who work for peace and justice must show skepticism when the media tell them who deserves their attention and advocacy efforts. They are quite selective when they decide who deserves our sympathy.

    In December 2008 Israel began what can only be described as a massacre in Gaza. More than 1,400 Gazans were killed so that Israel might inflict collective punishment on a civilian population, a direct violation of the Geneva Conventions. They were not even allowed to flee and save their lives, instead even hospitals and ambulances were targets in Israel’s efforts to kill as many Gazans as possible.


    Just as they prevented civilians from fleeing, the Israeli government did not permit the world’s news organizations to enter Gaza. The American media conducted incomplete coverage of the crisis without even pointing out that the Israeli government prevented them from doing their jobs. They didn’t exhort their readers and viewers to remind Israel that “the world is watching” them. There was no campaign to use Twitter as a tool to protest the killings and defend the Gazans right to live.

    The United States Congress did not pass resolutions condemning the Israeli government. Neither Democrats nor Republicans exhorted then president elect Obama to speak out on behalf of the Gazans. Editorial pages did not criticize his silence and tacit approval of a truly horrific human rights violation.


    In contrast, congress rushed to condemn the Iranian government, allegedly on behalf of the Iranian people. Their hypocrisy is breath taking. During the presidential campaign, Senator John McCain composed his only little ditty, “Bomb bomb bomb bomb Iran" in a horrendous disregard for human life. Now he attacks Obama for not speaking out against the government of Iran.

    Throughout 2006 and 2007 both houses of Congress passed resolutions which condemned Iran as a terrorist state and were meant to begin the process of authorizing war. Many of these same house members now claim to care, by a 405 to 1 vote margin, about the people they previously had been willing to kill.

    If Iran’s leaders are demonized enough, the call to war will become louder and more acceptable. “Progressive” Obamite cult worshippers never speak against the president, whether he is hiding proof of American torture, killing civilians in Afghanistan and Pakistan, promoting indefinite detention without trial, turning his back on black farmers and historically black colleges, cutting medicaid and medicare, or turning over the public treasury to bankster thieves. There is little reason to believe they will behave any differently if their idol tells us that bombs must fall.

    Concerned human rights activists find themselves in a difficult situation. While they have justifiable concerns about the treatment of anti-government protesters, they must always keep in mind that warfare is the worst human rights abuse of all. The greatest risk to the Iranian people comes from the American president, who had already proclaimed that military action against Iran should not be “taken off the table.”

    The media in this country always obey the rulers. They back who the government backs or attack whomever the government attacks. That is why we are never told about the lack of democracy among America’s allies in the Middle East. We are not told that the great “reformer” Mir Hossein Mousavi, is as dependent on the favors of Iran’s religious leaders as is his rival, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. This reformer was a top lieutenant of Ayatollah Khomeini, a man Americans are still told to hate, and he led purges against leftists in the 1980s. The complexities of Iranian politics are given short shrift and lies about hardliners versus reformers are repeated as truth.

    So “tweet” away if you like, but not because the congress or the media tell you to. Tweet for the 100 Afghans who were killed by American bombs last month. Tell Barack Obama that the world is watching him.

    Freedom Rider: Selective Sympathy for Iran | Black Agenda Report

  15. #105
    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fluffy View Post
    ^He was also on Rachel Maddow's show last night. When he stated that American hackers were hacking into Iranian regime websites 'n such, I was pretty surprised. Hacking in and deleting names of people the gov't is targeting. Good work hackers!
    Rachel Maddow Show

    even the lesbians can't help but fall for reza's charm...
    I'm open to everything. When you start to criticise the times you live in, your time is over. - Karl Lagerfeld

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