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Questions Remain about the Iran Democracy Fund

Irancove @ January 24, 2008 # 7 Comments

NIAC on the “Iran Democracy Fund:” Washington DC – In a controversial move last month, Congress appropriated $60 million for a package of State Department programs designed to “promote democracy, human rights, and the rule of law in Iran,” in part, by funding the activities of Iranian dissident groups. While the numerical value does not […]

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935 Lies

Irancove @ January 23, 2008 # 3 Comments

 via CNN President Bush and his top aides publicly made 935 false statements about the security risk posed by Iraq in the two years following September 11, 2001, according to a study released Tuesday by two nonprofit journalism groups. “In short, the Bush administration led the nation to war on the basis of erroneous information […]

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A Serious Political Blow to Ahmadinejad or an Election Maneuver?

Irancove @ January 23, 2008 # 4 Comments

Farideh Farhi Via ICGA Something interesting happened in Iran yesterday that some, particularly outside of Iran, are interpreting as a serious political blow to Ahmadinejad. I am not sure whether it should be considered a serious blow or more of an election maneuver on the part of the current speaker of the parliament speaker, Gholamali […]

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Study: Hundreds of deliberately false statements about Iraq made prior to the war

Irancove @ January 22, 2008 # 3 Comments

Source: AP  WASHINGTON – A study by two nonprofit journalism organizations found that President Bush and top administration officials issued hundreds of false statements about the national security threat from Iraq in the two years following the 2001 terrorist attacks. The study concluded that the statements “were part of an orchestrated campaign that effectively galvanized […]

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Basra Police Chief Denies Iran Mischief in Iraq

Irancove @ January 18, 2008 # 5 Comments

Via Informed Comment/USG Open Source Center: The USG Open Source Center translates an interview with the police chief of Basra, Staff Maj-Gen. Abdul Jalil Khalaf. Therein, Khalaf denies that Iran is playing a negative role and stirring turmoil in the southern port city of 1.5 million. Khalaf was appointed by Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki about […]

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Iranian Americans and the Senate: A Chamber in the Balance

Irancove @ January 18, 2008 # No Comment Yet

Source: NIAC By Babak Talebi America’s political future will depend heavily on the Senate elections in 2008 because a surprisingly large number of the upper chamber’s 35 races are considered competitive. Each election cycle, a third of US Senators face re-election, and just like the House races described earlier, rarely are incumbent Senators defeated. This […]

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How to Prevent War at the Strait of Hormuz

Irancove @ January 18, 2008 # 7 Comments

On the Strait of Hormuz incident: Prof. R.K. Ramazani The recent naval encounter between the US and Iran extended their cold war for the first time to the strategic Strait of Hormuz. Such incidents could escalate into armed conflict, with catastrophic consequences for the world economy, especially the price of oil. To prevent such escalation, […]

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Will the next president talk to Iran?

Irancove @ January 17, 2008 # 5 Comments

Source: Nieman Watchdog The head of the National Iranian American Council suggests questions presidential candidates should be asked about relations with Iran. By Trita Parsi Incidents at Sea Q. Just recently, an incident in the Strait of Hormuz in the Persian Gulf almost led to a military confrontation between the U.S. and Iran. The naval […]

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Legal mist stokes US-Iran tensions in strait

Irancove @ January 16, 2008 # 3 Comments

Very interesting article by Kaveh Afrasiabi on the legal ramifications of the strait “incident:” The recent, and escalating, tension between Iran and the US in the narrow corridor of the Strait of Hormuz has once again drawn attention to the strait’s international maritime status, and to the ramifications of this tension as a flashpoint in […]

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IAPAC’s 2008 Presidential Election Center

Irancove @ January 16, 2008 # 5 Comments

See IAPAC’s compilation of the 2008 presidential candidates for the Democratic and Republican primaries.  Profiles include the candidates positions on civil liberties, immigration and US-Iran relations.

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NIAC Guide: Presidential Candidate Postions on US-Iran Relations

Irancove @ January 16, 2008 # 3 Comments

NIAC profiles the presidential candidates’ positions on Iran.  See NIAC’s page for more details on each candidate. As the presidential elections draw near, Iranian Americans are faced with the challenge of gleaning candidate positions on Iran amidst a blur of sound bytes and vague rhetoric. Iran remains a key issue in both Republican and Democratic […]

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US plans to sell $120 million of sophisticated bombs to Saudi Arabia to counter Iran

Irancove @ January 16, 2008 # 17 Comments

Amy Goodman of Democracy Now! interviews Craig Under, author of “House of Bush, House of Saud” about the sale of sophisticated weaponry to Israel and Arab states to isolate Iran. AMY GOODMAN: The Bush administration has announced plans to sell Saudi Arabia around $120 million in sophisticated bombs. The sale would come as part of […]

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The Strait of Hormuz Incident and US Strategy

Irancove @ January 15, 2008 # 3 Comments

Below is an intelligence assessment by Stratfor (subscription only, so no link) on the alleged confrontation between Iranian speedboats and US warships in the Strait of Hormuz. by George Friedman Iranian speedboats reportedly menaced U.S. warships in the Strait of Hormuz on Jan. 6. Since then, the United States has gone to great lengths to […]

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Iranian-American Influence on the Presidential Primaries

Irancove @ January 15, 2008 # 8 Comments

NIAC’s Babak Talebi on the importance of primaries.

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Bush: The IC Makes Its Judgment, and I Make Mine

Irancove @ January 15, 2008 # 2 Comments

President Bush from the transcript of Bush’s discussions with King Abdullah: THE PRESIDENT: . . . We did spend time on Iran. The interesting issue on Iran is the effect of the NIE. And I went over the NIE with him. I assured him that our intelligence services came to an independent judgment. I reminded […]

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Bush Disowns Iran NIE

Irancove @ January 15, 2008 # No Comment Yet

Michael Hirsh of Newsweek reports on President Bush’s abandonment of the Iran Intelligence Estimate: In public, President Bush has been careful to reassure Israel and other allies that he still sees Iran as a threat, while not disavowing his administration’s recent National Intelligence Estimate. That NIE, made public Dec. 3, embarrassed the administration by concluding […]

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Israel Threatens Possible Military Action Against Iran

Irancove @ January 14, 2008 # 5 Comments

Via AP: Prime Minister Ehud Olmert told a powerful parliamentary panel on Monday that Israel rejects “no options” to block Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons, a meeting participant said. The statement was the Israeli leader’s clearest indication yet that he is willing to use military force against Iran. “Israel clearly will not reconcile itself to […]

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US Navy has no direct line of communication with Iranian navy

Irancove @ January 13, 2008 # One Comment

The Daily Kos reports on the escalation in the Persian Gulf and possible disastrous consequences stemming from an excessive anti-Iranian policy.  Excerpt: So how do you minimize the risk that a minor flashpoint will escalate quickly into a grave crisis? Not this way. (Chief of Naval Operations) Admiral Roughead said he worried such behavior could […]

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Is US Iran Policy Moderating?

Irancove @ January 13, 2008 # One Comment

Intelligence report from Swoop: In May 2006 the US offered conditional talks with Iran, the condition being that Iran agreed to suspend its uranium enrichment activities. Our Administration contacts now tell us that an active debate is underway about whether to soften that condition so as to allow direct talks with Tehran. The publication in […]

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“Filipino Monkey” behind radio threats in Persian Gulf?

Irancove @ January 13, 2008 # 7 Comments

The Navy Times reports on a mysterious prankster known as ‘The Filipino Monkey’ who apparently has a history of shouting insults and making spurious threats over the radio to ships in the Persian Gulf. Considering that the official video of the incident released by the US combines separate video and audio tracks—and is very different […]

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“If Americans Are Wise They Would Not Meddle in Iran’s Affairs”

Irancove @ January 13, 2008 # 6 Comments

Originally posted by Farideh Farhi at ICGA: Calling for the American use of wisdom was Gholamali Haddad Adel, the conservative speaker of the parliament, as he was registering as a candidate for the upcoming March 14 parliamentary elections. “Last time Bush also advised people not to participate in the elections. His suggestions this time will […]

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Cole on the Iranian Speedboat Case

Irancove @ January 12, 2008 # 4 Comments

Juan Cole makes some interesting points questioning the allegations behind the Iranian speedboat case in the Persian Gulf. He points to this article in McClatchy where the Republican candidates debate the issue: “One of the most animated exchanges came when the candidates were asked whether they backed the Navy’s cautious response recently when Iranian boats […]

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Intelligence Chief: Next Iran nuke NIE won’t be released

Irancove @ January 10, 2008 # No Comment Yet

Source: CNN The director of national intelligence said Tuesday he does not plan to make public any of the key findings of a soon-to-be-completed assessment on Iran’s nuclear program. Mike McConnell said to do so could expose U.S. intelligence capabilities and enable Iran to change its practices. The National Intelligence Estimate is intended to lay […]

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Will Naval Incident Undermine Bush’s Iran Message?

Irancove @ January 9, 2008 # 6 Comments

Source: IPS  WASHINGTON, Jan 9 (IPS) – It is by now almost routine. With recurring frequency, U.S. leaders tour the Middle East depicting Iran as the region’s greatest threat. As such, President George W. Bush’s visit to the Middle East this week has historic precedent. But while the message often fell on receptive ears in […]

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Farhi: Iran’s “Unduly Provocative” act against the US navy?

Irancove @ January 8, 2008 # 2 Comments

Farideh Farhi via NIAC: “Unduly provocative” was the term used by Vice Admiral Kevin J. Cosgriff, who commands U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, to characterize the incident that just took place between the Islamic Revolution’s Guard Corps and the US Navy. In what was identified as an “encounter,” Admiral Gosgriff insisted, “the U.S. ships were […]

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Lobe: More signs of Iran detente…from Patraeus

Irancove @ January 7, 2008 # No Comment Yet

Jim Lobe on General Patraeus’ new stance on Iran: In a new blow to the neo-conservative hard-liners at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), their hero, Gen. David Petraeus, has apparently concluded that Iran is indeed following through on its reported pledge earlier this fall to the Iraqi government to cut its alleged supply of weapons […]

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Iran’s Inner and Outer Circles of Influence and Power

Irancove @ January 1, 2008 # 8 Comments

Borzou Daraghi on the power structures in Iran: By Borzou Daragahi Los Angeles Times Staff Writer December 31, 2007 BEIRUT — Iran’s supreme leader spoke not with the thunder of a man regarded in his country as God’s representative on Earth, but with the exasperated tone of a corporate manager chastising his employees. Ali Khamenei […]

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