Wednesday, June 19, 2013

  • Wednesday, June 19, 2013
From Ian:

Michael Totten: Iran's New President is Lipstick on a Pig
So what do we have here in Iran? A man who barely won fifty percent of the vote in a rigged electoral system, who supports vicious repression of Iranian democracy activists as well as international terrorist organizations, who opposes Middle East peace, and who freely admits to deceiving Western diplomats about his country’s nuclear program to buy time.
There is nothing encouraging here whatsoever, so don’t be a sucker.
Hidden Report Reveals How Iran Dodges Nuclear Watchdogs
Iran continues to evade U.N. sanctions on its nuclear program by changing its supply routes, erecting new front companies, and shopping the world for lower grade parts not explicitly prohibited by the U.N. Security Council, but still capable of contributing to the assembly of a nuclear power reactor. That's according to a "confidential" unpublished report by a U.N. Security Council panel monitoring sanctions on Iran, exclusively published by Turtle Bay.
Russia says Iran ready to stop 20-percent enrichment
Russia’s foreign minister said Tuesday that Iran was willing to halt its 20-percent enrichment of uranium, which has been a key concession sought in international negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program.
Quartet's Tony Blair: Nuclear Iran Worse Than Military Option
Quartet envoy Tony Blair told Presidential Conference participants Wednesday that facing the prospect of a military confrontation with Tehran is a better option than having to grapple with a nuclear Iran.
The former British prime minister said in his address to the conference participants in the fifth annual gathering in Jerusalem, "We should be determined to overcome the threat from Iran.
Book on President-Elect’s Tragedy Scandalizes Tehran
In 1992, when Rouhani was studying for his second degree (MPhil) at Glasgow Caledonian University in Scotland, his son committed suicide. Rouhani was then 44 years old. Though he went on with his studies and life, completing his PhD at the university in 1999, his friends admit that he has never fully recovered for the tragic loss.
In his essay and subsequently in a broadcast by the Europe-based Radio Farda titled “In Search of Lost Children,” Nourizadeh published the strongly worded suicide note of the younger Rouhani. It was a Persian version of J’accuse aimed at the leading elite of the Islamic republic.
AIPAC urges caution on Rohani
In a memo to supporters, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee expressed deep suspicion of Iran's newly elected president, Hasan Rowhani, saying that he "has signaled no willingness to halt Iran's illicit nuclear program."
Richard Millett: British Labour MP: “No justice in Israeli legal system. Palestinian children found guilty on flimsy evidence.”
The report also criticises Israel’s welfare treatment of Palestinian child suspects. However, the evidence relied on by the nine lawyer committee is both mainly anonymous AND provided by organisations traditionally hostile to Israel like Breaking The Silence, Btselem and Defence for Children International Palestine, to name but a few.
Guardian’s David Hearst participates in discussion on the power of the Israel lobby
The meeting, on 12 June 2013, used a book by British Islamist, Ibrahim Hewitt, as the basis for discussion about the media’s approach to the Israel-Palestine conflict. The discussion, between Hewitt, ex-BBC Middle East correspondent Tim Llewellyn, and Guardian foreign leader writer David Hearst, was chaired by Mark McDonald, a founder of Labour Friends of Palestine & the Middle East.
Saudi role in Syria driven by fear of Shi'ite 'full moon'
Saudi Arabia's former intelligence chief, Prince Muqrin, once told American diplomats the Middle East's so-called Shi'ite Crescent where the Muslim sect holds sway was "becoming a full moon" as Iranian influence spread.
Kerry’s Syria attack plan said grounded by Pentagon
According to the report, during a meeting with high-ranking US Army officials, the secretary of state specifically demanded that the US Air Force target fields that were allegedly used to launch chemical weapons raids against rebel forces in the war-torn country.
'Exercise Eager Lion' War Games Active in Jordanian Desert
The 12-day war games, slated to end Thursday, was explained by a statement on the website of the U.S. Armed Forces Central Command as an opportunity to "promote cooperation and interoperability among participants," but appears clearly intended to send a warning to Jordan’s northern neighbor, Syria.
Report: French military training Syrian rebels
French military officials are training rebels fighting to bring down the Assad regime in the current Syrian conflict, according to a report by Army Radio.
The army-run radio station reported that French officers stationed in Jordan and Turkey are currently training the rebels in warfare tactics and weapons usage. Army Radio quoted "experts with access to the information" in their report.
Assad says Europe will 'pay price' if it arms rebels: newspaper
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has warned Europe in a German newspaper interview that it will "pay the price" if it follows Washington's lead and delivers arms to rebel forces, saying such a move would spread terrorism to the continent.
"If the Europeans deliver weapons, the backyard of Europe will become terrorist and Europe will pay the price for it," he said in an interview published on Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung's website on Monday.
Syrian pound tumbles as US plans to arm rebels
Many exchange shops closed in Damascus on Tuesday, fearing more chaos a day after the Syrian currency plunged to a new record low, reflecting growing fears in the capital following a U.S. decision to arm rebel groups fighting to topple President Bashar Assad’s regime.
The 'Sex Jihad'
News emerged a few weeks ago in Arabic media that yet another fatwa had called on practicing Muslim women to travel to Syria and offer their sexual services to the jihadis fighting to overthrow the secularist Assad government and install Islamic law. Reports attribute the fatwa to Saudi sheikh Muhammad al-'Arifi, who, along with other Muslim clerics earlier permitted jihadis to rape Syrian women.
Mohamed ElBaradei: Morsi Threatened to ‘Burn the Country’ if I Became Prime Minister
Leading Egyptian opposition figure Mohamed ElBaradei said Tuesday that President Mohamed Morsi threatened to “burn the country” if he became prime minister.
Tayyip Erdoğan, "God's Gift to Turkey"
There is no doubt that the Almighty has bestowed upon the world a special gift.
We have ex-Libyan leader Colonel Mohammed Gaddafi's word for that: in November 2010 the Turkish prime minister was awarded with the Al-Gaddafi International Prize for Human Rights for "distinguished service to humanity."
During the award ceremony Prime Minister Erdoğan declared that Islamophobia was a crime against humanity and that Muslims come from a tradition that also regards anti-Semitism as a crime against humanity. At a meeting of the Alliance of Civilizations in March, however, he added Zionism to the list, together with fascism.
'Standing man' inspires Turkish protesters in Istanbul
A Turkish protester dubbed the "standing man" has led a vigil on Istanbul's Taksim Square days after the authorities evicted demonstrators.
Performance artist Erdem Gunduz stood silently for eight hours, facing a portrait of Kemal Ataturk, the founder of modern, secular Turkey.

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