• All governments lie, but disaster lies in wait for countries whose officials smoke the same hashish they give out.

  • I.F. Stone

zaterdag 20 juni 2009

Iran 292

Are the Iranian Election Protests Another US Orchestrated ‘Color Revolution’?

By Paul Craig Roberts

June 20, 2009 "Information Clearing House" -- -A number of commentators have expressed their idealistic belief in the purity of Mousavi, Montazeri, and the westernized youth of Terhan. The CIA destabilization plan, announced two years ago (see below) has somehow not contaminated unfolding events.

The claim is made that Ahmadinejad stole the election, because the outcome was declared too soon after the polls closed for all the votes to have been counted. However, Mousavi declared his victory several hours before the polls closed. This is classic CIA destabilization designed to discredit a contrary outcome. It forces an early declaration of the vote. The longer the time interval between the preemptive declaration of victory and the announcement of the vote tally, the longer Mousavi has to create the impression that the authorities are using the time to fix the vote. It is amazing that people don’t see through this trick.


As for the grand ayatollah Montazeri’s charge that the election was stolen, he was the initial choice to succeed Khomeini, but lost out to the current Supreme Leader. He sees in the protests an opportunity to settle the score with Khamenei. Montazeri has the incentive to challenge the election whether or not he is being manipulated by the CIA, which has a successful history of manipulating disgruntled politicians.

There is a power struggle among the ayatollahs. Many are aligned against Ahmadinejad because he accuses them of corruption, thus playing to the Iranian countryside where Iranians believe the ayatollahs' lifestyles indicate an excess of power and money. In my opinion, Ahmadinejad's attack on the ayatollahs is opportunistic. However, it does make it odd for his American detractors to say he is a conservative reactionary lined up with the ayatollahs.

Commentators are "explaining" the Iran elections based on their own illusions, delusions, emotions, and vested interests. Whether or not the poll results predicting Ahmadinejad's win are sound, there is, so far, no evidence beyond surmise that the election was stolen. However, there are credible reports that the CIA has been working for two years to destabilize the Iranian government.

On May 23, 2007, Brian Ross and Richard Esposito reported on ABC News: “The CIA has received secret presidential approval to mount a covert “black” operation to destabilize the Iranian government, current and former officials in the intelligence community tell ABC News.”

On May 27, 2007, the London Telegraph independently reported: “Mr. Bush has signed an official document endorsing CIA plans for a propaganda and disinformation campaign intended to destabilize, and eventually topple, the theocratic rule of the mullahs.”

A few days previously, the Telegraph reported on May 16, 2007, that Bush administration neocon warmonger John Bolton told the Telegraph that a US military attack on Iran would “be a ‘last option’ after economic sanctions and attempts to foment a popular revolution had failed.”

On June 29, 2008, Seymour Hersh reported in the New Yorker: “Late last year, Congress agreed to a request from President Bush to fund a major escalation of covert operations against Iran, according to current and former military, intelligence, and congressional sources. These operations, for which the President sought up to four hundred million dollars, were described in a Presidential Finding signed by Bush, and are designed to destabilize the country’s religious leadership.”

The protests in Tehran no doubt have many sincere participants. The protests also have the hallmarks of the CIA orchestrated protests in Georgia and Ukraine.
It requires total blindness not to see this.

Daniel McAdams has made some telling points. http://www.lewrockwell.com/blog/lewrw/archives/027782.html For example, neoconservative Kenneth Timmerman wrote the day before the election that “there’s talk of a ‘green revolution’ in Tehran.” How would Timmerman know that unless it was an orchestrated plan? Why would there be a ‘green revolution’ prepared prior to the vote, especially if Mousavi and his supporters were as confident of victory as they claim? This looks like definite evidence that the US is involved in the election protests.

Timmerman goes on to write that “the National Endowment for Democracy has spent millions of dollars promoting ‘color’ revolutions . . . Some of that money appears to have made it into the hands of pro-Mousavi groups, who have ties to non-governmental organizations outside Iran that the National Endowment for Democracy funds.” Timmerman’s own neocon Foundation for Democracy is “a private, non-profit organization established in 1995 with grants from the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), to promote democracy and internationally-recognized standards of human rights in Iran.”
Click on "comments" below to read or post comments

http://informationclearinghouse.info/article22875.htm

Iran 291

Murder On The Streets Of Tehran

At 19:05 June 20th
Place: Karekar Ave., at the corner crossing Khosravi St. and Salehi st.
A young woman who was standing aside with her father watching the protests (allegedly) shot by a basij member hiding on the rooftop of a civilian house. He had clear shot at the girl and could not miss her. However, he aimed straight her heart. I am a doctor, so I rushed to try to save her. But the impact of the gunshot was so fierce that the bullet had blasted inside the victim's chest, and she died in less than 2 minutes.
The protests were going on about 1 kilometers away in the main street and some of the protesting crowd were running from tear gass used among them, towards Salehi St.

Follow me here on twitter for updates:


Iran 290


Through a Glass Darkly: Sifting Myth and Fact on Iran
WRITTEN BY CHRIS FLOYD

Iranian academic Ali Alizadeh points out an important fact missed by many who see nothing but sinister American manipulation behind the post-election protests in Iran: that Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's economic policies -- touted as a possible reason that he expanded his vote total by 10 million over the last election, a bounty ostensibly harvested from the grateful rural poor -- are actually much more in line with his old nemesis, George W. Bush. As Alizadeh notes (via the Angry Arab):

It needs to be emphasized that Ahmadinejad’s economic policies are to the right of the IMF: cutting subsidies in a radical way, more privatization than any other post-79 government (by selling the country to the Revolutionary Guards) and an inflation and unemployment rate which have brought the low-income sections of the society to their knees.

The trope of a singular American hand guiding a million-headed puppet in the streets of Iran seems a bit odd anyway. There is of course little doubt that the imperial security apparat will try to make hay from the turmoil; but the American militarists have already made it clear that they prefer a victory for the incumbent Ahmadinejad; after all, without a readily demonizable figure as the public face of Iran, their unquenchable lust for conquering Persia becomes that much harder to consummate. As Steven Zunes notes, the grim-visaged rightwing avenger Daniel Pipes spelled it out in a recent jowl-flapping at the Heritage Foundation, proclaiming that "he would vote for Ahmadinejad if he could, because he prefers 'an enemy who is forthright, blatant, obvious.'" (Well, don't we all? And as with so many other enemies of peace, liberty -- and sanity -- Pipes himself fits the bill quite admirably. One always knows exactly where that po-faced squeaker of pips is coming from.)

And as we noted here late last month, the American security apparat seemed to be intervening on Ahmadinejad's behalf, with a stepped-up terrorist campaign by the militant Sunni extremist group, Jundullah -- just one of the terrorist organizations inside Iran now on the American payroll:

...the attack on the Zahedan mosque serves a confluence of interests. For it comes not only at a strategic location but also at a strategic time: just two weeks before the Iranian presidential election, with the hardline incumbent, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, facing a strong challenge from two reformist candidates.

Of course, the very last thing that the militarists in Washington and Israel want to see is the election of a moderate in Iran. They want -- and need -- Ahmadinejad, or someone just like him, so they can keep stoking the fires for war. A moderate president, more open to genuine negotiations, and much cooler in rhetoric than the loose-lipped Ahmadinejad, would be yet another blow to their long-term plans. Because the ultimate aim -- the only aim, really -- of the militarists' policy toward Iran is regime change. They don't care about "national security" or the "threat" from Iran's non-existent nuclear arsenal; they know that there is no threat whatsoever that Iran will attack Israel -- or even more ludicrously, the United States -- even if Tehran did have nukes. They don't care about the suffering of the Iranian people under a draconian, repressive and corrupt regime. They are not worried about Iran's "sponsorship of terrorism," for, as we've seen, the militarists thrive on -- when they are not actively fomenting -- the fear and anguish caused by terrorism. This fear is the grease that drives the ever-expanding war machine and 'justifies' its own ever-increasing draconian powers and corruption.

No, in the end, the sole aim of the militarist policy is to overthrow Iran's current political system and replace it with a regime that will bow to the hegemony of the United States and its regional deputy, Israel. There is no essential difference in aim or method between today's policy and that of 1953. (Except that the regional deputy in those days was Britain, not Israel.) What they want is compliance, access to resources and another strategic stronghold in the heart of the oil lands -- precisely what they wanted, and got, with the installation of the Shah and his corruption-ridden police state more than a half-century ago.... To lose a fear-raising (and fundraising!) asset like Ahmadinejad now would be a bitter disappointment.

And what better way for an incumbent president to stand tall before the voters than to rally the nation around him in the face of a horrible terrorist attack? A mosque full of Shiite worshippers, blown to pieces, with photos showing the blood of the innocent martyrs splattered on the ruined walls? This serves the interests of all the major players in the great geopolitical game: the Iranian hardliners, the American and Israeli militarists, the Jundullah extremists.

Moussavi -- a long-time paladin of Iran's ruling establishment, a conservative who was once a hardline prime minister himself, closely aligned with the Ayatollah Khomeini (America's own "Great Satan" of yore) -- is hardly the pliable stooge sought by the Potomac plotters. Of course, as we noted earlier this week, this fact doesn't necessarily make him a Jeffersonian hero of human liberty, either -- an Aung San Suu Kyi of Iran. The corporate media's portrayal of the Iranian uprising is indeed a lazy slotting of chaotic reality into neatly defined, "color revolution" stereotypes; but their misjudgment needn't be compounded a comparable stereotyping the other way. (The corporate media's false depiction of Moussavi as a "liberal" has ironically been seized upon by some American dissidents as proof that he is a color-revolution cut-out for Western interests, even, as some have described him, an "Iranian Ahmad Chalabi." If he were a returned exile who had spent years in the pay of the CIA, that might be true. But that is not the case. Again, it is no endorsement of Moussavi to point out these facts.) As Alizadeh notes, the crowds appearing at the protest rallies are

made of religious women covered in chador walking hand in hand with westernized young women who are usually prosecuted for their appearance; veterans of war in wheelchairs next to young boys for whom the Iran-Iraq war is only an anecdote; and working class who have sacrificed their daily salary to participate in the rally next to the middle classes. This story is not limited to Tehran. Shiraz (two confirmed dead), Isfahan (one confirmed dead), Tabriz, Oroomiye are also part of this movement and other cities are joining with a predictable delay (as it was the case in 79 revolution).

As I noted the other day, no one knows how the current turmoil will turn out -- or how the various power-players, including the many elite factions inside Iran and the many vultures circling outside, will attempt to mold the chaotic reality to their own advantage. But it seems to me that the circumstances in Iran cannot be forced into any simplistic template. For while it is true that the American imperium does indeed seek to exert its influence everywhere and always, it does not and cannot engender and control every event on earth. We risk partaking of the courtiers' own hubris -- and their mythology of American exceptionalism -- if we make that automatic assumption.
Back to Top

http://www.chris-floyd.com/component/content/article/3/1782-through-a-glass-darkly-sifting-myth-and-fact-on-iran.html

Iran 289

Iranian Elections: The ‘Stolen Elections’ Hoax
By James Petras

“Change for the poor means food and jobs, not a relaxed dress code or mixed recreation…Politics in Iran is a lot more about class war than religion.”Financial Times Editorial, June 15 2009
June 19, 2009 "Information Clearing House" -- There is hardly any election, in which the White House has a significant stake, where the electoral defeat of the pro-US candidate is not denounced as illegitimate by the entire political and mass media elite. In the most recent period, the White House and its camp followers cried foul following the free (and monitored) elections in Venezuela and Gaza, while joyously fabricating an ‘electoral success’ in Lebanon despite the fact that the Hezbollah-led coalition received over 53% of the vote.

The recently concluded, June 12, 2009 elections in Iran are a classic case: The incumbent nationalist-populist President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (MA) received 63.3% of the vote (or 24.5 million votes), while the leading Western-backed liberal opposition candidate Hossein Mousavi (HM) received 34.2% or (3.2 million votes). Iran’s presidential election drew a record turnout of more than 80% of the electorate, including an unprecedented overseas vote of 234,812, in which HM won 111,792 to MA’s 78,300. The opposition led by HM did not accept their defeat and organized a series of mass demonstrations that turned violent, resulting in the burning and destruction of automobiles, banks, public building and armed confrontations with the police and other authorities. Almost the entire spectrum of Western opinion makers, including all the major electronic and print media, the major liberal, radical, libertarian and conservative web-sites, echoed the opposition’s claim of rampant election fraud. Neo-conservatives, libertarian conservatives and Trotskyites joined the Zionists in hailing the opposition protestors as the advance guard of a democratic revolution. Democrats and Republicans condemned the incumbent regime, refused to recognize the result of the vote and praised the demonstrators’ efforts to overturn the electoral outcome. The New York Times, CNN, Washington Post, the Israeli Foreign Office and the entire leadership of the Presidents of the Major American Jewish Organizations called for harsher sanctions against Iran and announced Obama’s proposed dialogue with Iran as ‘dead in the water’.
The Electoral Fraud Hoax
Western leaders rejected the results because they ‘knew’ that their reformist candidate could not lose…For months they published daily interviews, editorials and reports from the field ‘detailing’ the failures of Ahmadinejad’s administration; they cited the support from clerics, former officials, merchants in the bazaar and above all women and young urbanites fluent in English, to prove that Mousavi was headed for a landslide victory. A victory for Mousavi was described as a victory for the ‘voices of moderation’, at least the White House’s version of that vacuous cliché. Prominent liberal academics deduced the vote count was fraudulent because the opposition candidate, Mousavi, lost in his own ethnic enclave among the Azeris. Other academics claimed that the ‘youth vote’ – based on their interviews with upper and middle-class university students from the neighborhoods of Northern Tehran were overwhelmingly for the ‘reformist’ candidate.
What is astonishing about the West’s universal condemnation of the electoral outcome as fraudulent is that not a single shred of evidence in either written or observational form has been presented either before or a week after the vote count. During the entire electoral campaign, no credible (or even dubious) charge of voter tampering was raised. As long as the Western media believed their own propaganda of an immanent victory for their candidate, the electoral process was described as highly competitive, with heated public debates and unprecedented levels of public activity and unhindered by public proselytizing. The belief in a free and open election was so strong that the Western leaders and mass media believed that their favored candidate would win.
The Western media relied on its reporters covering the mass demonstrations of opposition supporters, ignoring and downplaying the huge turnout for Ahmadinejad. Worse still, the Western media ignored the class composition of the competing demonstrations – the fact that the incumbent candidate was drawing his support from the far more numerous poor working class, peasant, artisan and public employee sectors while the bulk of the opposition demonstrators was drawn from the upper and middle class students, business and professional class.
Moreover, most Western opinion leaders and reporters based in Tehran extrapolated their projections from their observations in the capital – few venture into the provinces, small and medium size cities and villages where Ahmadinejad has his mass base of support. Moreover the opposition’s supporters were an activist minority of students easily mobilized for street activities, while Ahmadinejad’s support drew on the majority of working youth and household women workers who would express their views at the ballot box and had little time or inclination to engage in street politics.


A number of newspaper pundits, including Gideon Rachman of the Financial Times, claim as evidence of electoral fraud the fact that Ahmadinejad won 63% of the vote in an Azeri-speaking province against his opponent, Mousavi, an ethnic Azeri. The simplistic assumption is that ethnic identity or belonging to a linguistic group is the only possible explanation of voting behavior rather than other social or class interests. A closer look at the voting pattern in the East-Azerbaijan region of Iran reveals that Mousavi won only in the city of Shabestar among the upper and the middle classes (and only by a small margin), whereas he was soundly defeated in the larger rural areas, where the re-distributive policies of the Ahmadinejad government had helped the ethnic Azeris write off debt, obtain cheap credits and easy loans for the farmers. Mousavi did win in the West-Azerbaijan region, using his ethnic ties to win over the urban voters. In the highly populated Tehran province, Mousavi beat Ahmadinejad in the urban centers of Tehran and Shemiranat by gaining the vote of the middle and upper class districts, whereas he lost badly in the adjoining working class suburbs, small towns and rural areas.
Lees verder: http://informationclearinghouse.info/article22868.htm

Iran 288

En zoals overal waar de macht in het gedrang komt slaat de macht het verzet neer, de colonne eenmaal in beweging kan niet worden gestopt, zoals de socialistische burgemeester Polak in 1980 de Amsterdamse krakers en hun sympathisanten liet weten terwijl tanks door de straten reden, vergezeld van scherpschutters. Het geweld van de autoriteiten werd toen onmiddellijk gesteund door de commerciele massamedia. In Iran gebeurt hetzelfde nu. Niets nieuws onder de zon.

Witnesses Report Fierce Clashes on Tehran Streets
Saturday 20 June 2009
by: Ali Akbar Dareini and Nasser Karimi |
Visit article original @ The Associated Press Tehran, Iran -

Witnesses said police fired tear gas and water cannons at thousands of protesters who rallied in Tehran Saturday in open defiance of Iran's clerical government, sharply escalating the most serious internal conflict since the 1979 Islamic Revolution. Eyewitnesses described fierce clashes near Revolution Square in central Tehran after some 3,000 protesters chanted "Death to the dictator!" and "Death to dictatorship!" Police responded with tear gas and water cannons, the witnesses said. English-language state TV said a blast at the Tehran shrine of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini had killed one persona and wounded two but the report could not be independently confirmed due to government restrictions on independent reporting. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei warned opposition leaders on Friday to end street protests or be held responsible for any "bloodshed and chaos" to come. Eyewitnesses contacted by The Associated Press said thousands of police and plainclothes militia members filled the streets Saturday to prevent rallies. Fire trucks took up positions in Revolution Square and riot police surrounded Tehran University, the site of recent clashes between protesters and security forces, one witness said. Web sites run by supporters of opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi said he planned to post a message, but there was no statement by the time of the planned street protests at 4 p.m. (7:30 a.m. EDT, 1130 GMT). Some pro-reform Web sites called for people to take to the streets Tehran Province Police Chief Ahmad Reza Radan said earlier in the day "police forces will crack down on any gathering or protest rally which are being planned by some people."
Lees verder: http://www.truthout.org/062009Z

Honger in de Wereld 9


De NRC bericht:
VN: ruim miljard hongerlijders wereldwijd
Gepubliceerd: 19 juni 2009 16:26 | Gewijzigd: 19 juni 2009 21:46
Door een onzer redacteuren
Amsterdam, 19 juni. Het aantal ondervoede mensen op de wereld is in een jaar tijd met 100 miljoen mensen gestegen en staat nu op 1,02 miljard. Dit heeft de Voedsel en Landbouworganisatie (FAO) vandaag bekend gemaakt.

De stijging is de grootste groei ooit in een jaar tijd.

„Het stelsel van internationale voedselvoorziening is fragiel en wij zijn kwetsbaar”, zei Jacques Diouf, directeur-generaal van de FAO, vandaag tijdens een persconferentie in Rome. „Graanvoorraden staan op een historisch minimum. Als er nu ergens een natuurramp plaats heeft, zoals een overstroming, zijn we onmiddellijk terug in de situatie van 2007 met voedselrellen in tientallen landen. Honger is een gevaar voor wereldvrede. Voedselzekerheid is een politiek vraagstuk. We hebben een nieuwe voedselordening nodig.”

De twee belangrijkste redenen van de groei van het hongerprobleem zijn de verdubbeling van de voedselprijzen in 2007-2008 en de economische crisis. Ook al zijn de prijzen van granen op de wereldmarkt weer gedaald, in veel ontwikkelingslanden zijn de voedselprijzen nog altijd een derde hoger dan in 2005. Voor armen die gewend zijn tweederde van hun inkomen aan voedsel uit te geven, betekent een dergelijke prijsverhoging dat ze zich niet meer voldoende voedsel kunnen veroorloven.

Carolien Roelants 12


Het simplistisch, manicheisch wereldbeeld van de NRC-redactie:

'Khamenei voert de spanning op Reactie burgers ongewis

Met zijn verbod om nog te demonstreren heeft de hoogste leider van Iran, ayatollah Khamenei, de situatie op scherp gesteld.
Door onze redacteuren
THOMAS ERDBRINK
CAROLIEN ROELANTS
Teheran/Rotterdam, 20 juni.

De dreiging in de woorden van de Iraanse leider ayatollah Ali Khamenei was gisteren niet mis te verstaan: het protest tegen de herverkiezing van president Ahmadinejad moet stoppen en als er bloed wordt vergoten zal dat de verantwoordelijkheid zijn van de tegenpartij. Hij zou niet wijken voor „de straat”.'

Khamenei versus Bugers dus. Zwart versus wit. Er zijn dus maar twee partijen, de ene is het absolute kwaad, de anderen het absolute goed. Het absolute kwaad heeft 'de situatie op scherp gesteld', de anderen zijn alleen slachtoffers. Zo ongenuanceerd dachten de commerciele massamedia ook in 1979 aan de vooravond van het Khomeini regime.


De opgewonden toon van de commentaren van de NRC-journaliste Carolien Roelants doen mij telkens weer denken aan de woorden van de Griekse dichter Pindarus: 'De oorlog is iets zoets voor wie hem niet heeft meegemaakt.' Opiniemakers als Roelants zijn een ramp. Ze moeten het hebben van kicks, van bevliegingen, van de gedachte dat ze groots en meeslepend leven, terwijl ze vanuit hun comfortabele fauteuil de wereld proberen te beheersen en 'van organisaties dromen, van wetgevingen, van een maatschappij als een klooster.' Het was Flaubert die al ruim anderhalve eeuw geleden voor dit slag journalisten waarschuwde. De grote Franse auteur schreef aan Louise Colet: 'Wat zouden die prachtige kranten, die je me zo graag iedere ochtend door zou zien nemen onder het nuttigen van een beboterd stuk brood en een kop koffie met melk, mij te vertellen hebben? Wat gaat het mij aan wat ze allemaal beweren? Ik ben niet erg nieuwsgierig naar het nieuws, de politiek vind ik stomvervelend en het feuilleton stinkt. Het is allemaal geestdodend en het irriteert me... Ik heb een diepe afkeer van kranten, dat wil zeggen van wat kortstondig is, van wat voorbijgaat, van wat vandaag belangrijk is en het morgen niet meer zijn zal. Dat betekent niet dat ik ongevoelig ben. Alleen, ik sympathiseer evenzeer, en misschien meer, met de vergeten ellende van uitgestorven volkeren, waar niemand meer aan denkt, met alle kreten die zij geslaakt hebben en die je niet meer hoort. Ik heb met het lot van de huidige arbeidende klassen niet meer medelijden dan met de slaven van de Oudheid die een molensteen ronddraaiden, niet meer of evenveel.'

Frits van Exter en Zijn Reflexen 2


'Vrij Nederland rectificeert artikel over NIMD

18-06-2009

Vrij Nederland publiceerde op 15 juni op deze website en in het deze week verschenen weekblad (nummer 25) een artikel over het Nederlandse Instituut voor Meerpartijendemocratie (NIMD). Het instituut is opgericht door verschillende Nederlandse politieke partijen en is bedoeld om politieke partijen in opkomende democratieën te steunen.

In dit artikel komt een vroegere medewerker, Joshua Sietsma aan het woord. Hij levert kritiek op de werkwijze van het NIMD. Door hem daarbij vermelde feiten blijken, volgens de reacties van het instituut maar ook in tweede instantie van Sietsma zelf, helaas niet juist te zijn.

Vrij Nederland schoot tekort door onvoldoende pogingen in het werk te stellen de beweringen te verifiëren en het instituut niet in de gelegenheid te stellen daarop te reageren.

Vrij Nederland heeft het artikel inmiddels van deze website verwijderd en excuses aan het NIMD aangeboden. Het zal deze rectificatie op de website en in het volgende nummer van Vrij Nederland plaatsen.

Aanleiding voor het artikel was de recente publicatie van een kritisch rapport over het toezicht op het NIMD, waarna de organisatie onder ‘curatele’ is geplaatst van het ministerie van Ontwikkelingssamenwerking. De Tweede Kamer besloot deze week dat er een onafhankelijk onderzoek moet komen naar het functioneren van het NIMD.

De vroegere medewerker Sietsma (25) deed in VN relaas van zijn ervaringen met het NIMD. Sietsma was lid van de ChristenUnie en ging drie jaar geleden op uitnodiging van het NIMD op reis naar Latijns-Amerika.

Hieronder de rechtzetting in detail:

- Sietsma ontving in Nicaragua en Guatemala geen dagvergoeding van 280 dollar, maar van respectievelijk 183 en 154 dollar.
- Sietsma zei in luxe hotels te hebben geslapen, maar de werkelijke prijs bedroeg niet meer dan 65 dollar per nacht. Bovendien werden de hotelkosten afgetrokken van de dagvergoeding en werd de vergoeding niet door het NIMD betaald maar door de ontwikkelingsorganisatie UNDP.
- Sietsma zei dat hij vooral ‘inhoudsloze ontmoetingen’ had, onder andere met miss Guatemala. Zij was inderdaad aanwezig, op een bijeenkomst waar ook Sietsma was, maar slechts als een van de gasten bij de uitreiking van een prijs door de president van Guatemala aan voormalige leden van jeugdbendes in de sloppenwijken.
- In het artikel zegt Sietsma dat doel en nut van de reis hem ontgingen, maar na afloop schreef hij een verslag dat de reis ‘ons de gelegenheid bood te leren van anderen’ en ‘contacten van onschatbare waarde heeft opgeleverd’.
- Sietsma beweerde ook dat er bij het NIMD geen behoefte was aan een ‘debriefing’, maar behalve het genoemde verslag van zijn hand heeft hij ook een presentatie gehouden over zijn reis bij het NIMD.
- Sietsma beweerde verantwoordelijk te zijn voor de organisatie van programma’s van buitenlandse bezoekers van het instituut, maar hij blijkt uitsluitend betrokken te zijn geweest bij onderdelen waarbij zijn partij, de ChristenUnie, de gastheer was.
- In het stuk zegt Sietsma dat minister Van Middelkoop op kosten van het NIMD naar Marokko is geweest. Op dat moment was hij lid van de Eerste Kamer en in die hoedanigheid is hij voor het NIMD naar Tanzania geweest.
- Sietsma beweert dat de ChristenUnie is betaald voor de reis van Van Middelkoop, het NIMD ontkent dit. Het instituut zegt nooit bij te dragen aan politieke partijen voor missies van politici.
- Sietsma zegt dat er lunchbijeenkomsten zijn georganiseerd waarvoor mensen zijn ingevlogen uit Suriname en Singapore.Dat blijkt niet het geval.
- Directeur Roel von Meijenfeldt zou volgens Sietsma ‘altijd’ business-class vliegen. Daarover is hij in tweede instantie minder stellig. Volgens het instituut houdt de directeur zich aan de richtlijnen van het ministerie van Buitenlandse Zaken en is hij ‘zojuist uit Kenia teruggekeerd per economy class’.

Frits van Exter
hoofdredacteur'

Zie: https://twitter.com/fexter



CHRISTEN UNIE??

Iran 287


Mossadeq Trial 1953. CIA Coup. Iraniers versus Iraniers.

vrijdag 19 juni 2009

Iran 286

In principle I don't believe in the effect of such petitions, but the cause is well formulated. Obama should not bow into pressure from the neocon side to interfere. What can he do? Every interference will have counterproductive effects. Especially if it is associated with the neocons who did interfere in Iraq with such disastrous effects, and if it is associated with "Bomb bomb Iran" singing McCain. And with people who never recommended to interfere on behalf of the Gazans or the Lebanese when Israel acted there, and whom we would never hear about the settlements, and who never minded supporting suppressive regimes elsewhere.. etc.



Just Foreign Policy

Dear 


President Obama has faced pressure from some members of Congress and voices in the media to take sides in the dispute in Iran over the recent Presidential election.  Senator John McCain said that "[the President] should speak out that this was a corrupt, flawed sham of an election."  [1]  Senator Lindsey Graham has been reported as saying that the situation in Iran "clearly deserves a more forceful response" from the President. [2]


However, taking sides in Iran's internal election dispute would be dangerously counterproductive. As President Obama said Tuesday, "... it's not productive, given the history of U.S.-Iranian relations, to be seen as meddling -- the U.S. President meddling in Iranian elections." [3] Moreover, any appearance of meddling in Iran's election dispute could undermine the President's commitment to pursue sustained diplomatic engagement with the government of Iran, which he has pledged to continue regardless of the election result.


Would you tell President Obama that you support his cautious response by signing our petition below?


http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/election


Contrary to the popular argument, it is unlikely that taking the side of the opposition would be helpful to the demonstrators.  The Iranian government is already attempting to tie the political unrest in Iran to Western influences. [4]  Given our countries' fraught history, taking the side of the opposition would most likely not serve the interests of the Iranian people, but would instead be used by hard-liners in Iran to paint the demonstrators as American proxies. 


As Senator Richard Lugar wisely stated Tuesday, "When popular revolutions occur, they come really from the people. They are generated from people power within the country. For us to become heavily involved in the election at this point is to give the clergy an opportunity to have an enemy and to use us, really, to retain their power."[5]


You can encourage President Obama to continue his careful assessment of Iran by following the link below:


http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/election


Thank you for all you do for a just foreign policy,


Megan Iorio
Just Foreign Policy


Help us build for a Just Foreign Policy
Your financial contributions to Just Foreign Policy help us create opportunities for Americans to advocate for a just foreign policy.
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/donate.html


References:


1. McCain on NBC's Today show, video, June 16, 2009. http://today.msnbc.msn.com/id/26184891/vp/18424808#31383483


2. "GOP tries to find its pitch on Iran," Manu Raju, POLITICO, June 17, 2009. http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0609/23827.html


3. "Remarks by President Obama and the President Lee Myung-Bak of the Republic of Korea in Joint Press Availability", Transcript, June 16, 2009.  http://www.whitehouse.gov/the_press_office/Remarks-by-President-Obama-and-President-Lee-of-the-Republic-of-Korea-in-Joint-Press-Availability/


4. "Iran accuses US of interference in election feud", Associated Press, June 17, 2009. http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/ap/top/world/6484606.html


5. "Lugar: hands off Iran, for now," CBS Video, June 16, 2009. http://www.cbsnews.com/blogs/2009/06/16/politics/politicalhotsheet/entry5091165.shtml

De Israelische Terreur 845


The Har Homa settlement in the occupied West Bank. Netanyahu defied calls for a halt to settlement expansion in his speech on Monday. (ActiveStills)

Netanyahu's "brilliant" peace plan
Hasan Abu Nimah and Ali Abunimah, The Electronic Intifada, 17 June 2009


Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu proposed a peace plan so ingenious it is a wonder that for six decades of bloodshed no one thought of it. Some people might have missed the true brilliance of his ideas presented in a speech at Bar Ilan University on 14 June, so we are pleased to offer this analysis.

First, Netanyahu wants Palestinians to become committed Zionists. They can prove this by declaring, "We recognize the right of the Jewish people to a state of their own in this land." As he pointed out, it is only the failure of Arabs in general and Palestinians in particular to commit themselves to the Zionist dream that has caused conflict, but once "they say those words to our people and to their people, then a path will be opened to resolving all the problems between our peoples." It is of course perfectly natural that Netanyahu would be "yearning for that moment."

Mere heartfelt commitment to Zionism will not be enough, however. For the Palestinians' conversion to have "practical meaning," Netanyahu explained, "there must also be a clear understanding that the Palestinian refugee problem will be resolved outside Israel's borders." In other words, Palestinians must agree to help Israel complete the ethnic cleansing it began in 1947-48, by abandoning the right of return. This is indeed logical because as Zionists, Palestinians would share the Zionist ambition that Palestine be emptied of Palestinians to the greatest extent possible.

Netanyahu is smart enough to recognize that even the self-ethnic-cleansing of refugees may not be sufficient to secure "peace": there will still remain millions of Palestinians living inconveniently in their native land, or in the heart of what Netanyahu insisted was the "historic homeland" of the Jews.

For these Palestinians, the peace plan involves what Netanyahu calls "demilitarization," but what should be properly understood as unconditional surrender followed by disarmament. Disarmament, though necessary, cannot be immediate, however. Some recalcitrant Palestinians may not wish to become Zionists. Therefore, the newly pledged Zionist Palestinians would have to launch a civil war to defeat those who foolishly insist on resisting Zionism. Or as Netanyahu put it, the "Palestinian Authority will have to establish the rule of law in Gaza and overcome Hamas." (In fact, this civil war has already been underway for several years as the American and Israeli-backed Palestinian "security forces," led by US Lt. General Keith Dayton, have escalated their attacks on Hamas).

Once anti-Zionist Palestinians are crushed, the remaining Palestinians -- whose number equals that of Jews in historic Palestine -- will be able to get on with life as good Zionists, according to Netanyahu's vision. They will not mind being squeezed into ever smaller ghettos and enclaves in order to allow for the continued expansion of Jewish colonies, whose inhabitants Netanyahu described as "an integral part of our people, a principled, pioneering and Zionist public." And, in line with their heartfelt Zionism, Palestinians will naturally agree that "Jerusalem must remain the united capital of Israel."
Lees verder: http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article10606.shtml

De Pro Israel Lobby 138


Jewish Voice for PeaceTell YouTube not to censor "Feeling the Hate" video
After it was seen by over 400,000 people, YouTube took down Max Blumenthal and Joseph Dana’s video “Feeling the Hate in Jerusalem on Eve of Obama’s Cairo Address” without explanation. They have stonewalled all attempts to find out what happened.
Feeling The Hate In Jerusalem -- The Censored Video from Max Blumenthal on Vimeo.
Blumenthal and Dana took a video camera to downtown Jerusalem and asked kids on the street – mainly Americans in Jerusalem over the summer - how they felt about Obama. The answers they heard: mainly hardcore racism enhanced by expletives, homophobia, Islamophobia, Arab hatred, and a lot of ignorance. Youtube also just took down another video of a Palestinian forced to slap himself by the Israeli Border Police. A pattern is emerging. We know this kind of hatred and extremism is a real phenomenon in our Jewish communities. It needs to be unearthed and looked at with the same seriousness we want to see in any community confronting its own extremists. As we seek real peace in the Middle East, the stakes couldn't be higher.
Write to YouTube and ask them to put this video back up.
Dear YouTube: Please re-post Max Blumenthal’s video “Feeling the Hate in Jerusalem on the Eve of Obama’s Cairo Address,” originally posted on June 5, 2009.You also recently took down a video featured in Ha'aretz of Israeli Border Police abusing a Palestinian. Removing these important videos is censorship. The videos, while showing disturbing viewpoints, do not violate YouTube’s community guidelines. YouTube has just announced that it is relaxing some of its guidelines so that videos showing the current events in Iran may be posted. I am asking you to draw upon that same commitment to supporting human rights by returning Max Blumenthal’s video and any other similar ones to your site. The extreme views represented in these videos need to be heard and acknowledged so that they can be overcome. Making the videos disappear doesn’t make the hateful views expressed in the video disappear, too. Please re-post the videos. Thank you,Optional Member Code
First NameLast NameEmail*Zip/Postal Code*

Please share your thoughts on the issue with JVP. We'll collect them and send a selection of them to Jewish leadership, as we ask communal leaders to take responsibility for this extremism and work to counter it by building Jewish communities based on respect for others, faith in equality, and reverence for justice.
Zie: http://salsa.democracyinaction.org/o/301/t/9047/petition.jsp?petition_KEY=1990

H.J.A. Hofland 26

Henk Hofland schrijft dit: 'De drang in het Westen, en vooral in Israël, om een preventieve aanval te ondernemen.' Het probleem van deze formulering is dat het lijkt alsof een 'preventieve aanval'  legaal is, alsof het een normaal onderdeel vormt van de politiek, geheel conform generaal Von Clausewitz zijn stelling dat oorlog 'niets anders [is] dan een voortzetting van het politiek verkeer met andere middelen'. Maar niets is minder waar. Net zomin als de nazi's preventieve oorlogen voerden, zo voeren Israel en de VS preventieve oorlogen. 'Preventieve aanval' is een propagandistische term, de juiste benaming is agressie-oorlog en die is sinds het tribunaal van Neurenberg verboden. 'The concept of "preventive war" is illegal under Section 51'. Zie: http://www.counterpunch.org/bacher05302003.html  En een dergelijke agressie is al helemaal verboden als de argumentatie gebaseerd is op leugens. Zie: http://www.cjd.org/paper/surlis.html

Dus wat Hofland zo vlotjes op papier heeft gezet, is in wezen klinkklare nonsens. En toch lijkt het heel wat. Het kost een mens een dagtaak om alle propaganda te weerleggen.

Iran 285

Na alle opgewonden berichtgeving van de westerse commerciele massamedia is het tijd om te proberen een voorzichtige serieuze balans op te maken:

Walking Soft

Friday 19 June 2009

by: William Rivers Pitt, t r u t h o u t | Columnist

A lot of different things have been happening in Iran over the last several days, some of them hopeful, some of them ominous, and most of them as opaque and inscrutable as the country itself. Ever since last weekend's election, hundreds of thousands of people have taken to the streets to protest the outcome of what is widely believed to have been a rigged vote. A portion of the masses have come out in support of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who was declared the winner after a highly suspect election process, while a majority of those in the streets have rallied behind the so-called "reformist" candidate, Mir Hussein Mousavi.

    What happened? According to Warren P. Strobel of McClatchy Newspapers:


    There were scattered reports of opposition candidates' poll observers not being allowed into polling places, but no overt signs of voter intimidation or other troubles, in Tehran at least. What happened next is opaque. There were no international observers. None of the ballots have been seen publicly; they're under guard at the Interior Ministry in downtown Tehran, which is under Ahmadinejad's control.

    By late Friday afternoon, the atmosphere in Tehran was beginning to change. Morning newspapers had carried news of "Operation Sovereignty," a police maneuver in Tehran that involved tens of thousands of police units. A reporter driving near the Interior Ministry at the time saw security presence being beefed up, as if the authorities expected trouble. According to a European diplomat, who spoke on the condition of anonymity in order to be candid, the Interior Ministry brought in loyalists from the provinces to tabulate the votes, furloughing its regular employees and locking them out of the building.

    The diplomat's account couldn't be confirmed; a McClatchy request to speak with someone at Iran's Election Commission was turned down Monday, and the next day the government ordered foreign journalists in Iran on temporary visas to stay off the streets and prepare to leave the country. Aides to Mousavi, who have an obvious motive to say so, speculate that the votes may never have been counted at all. If they were, the handwritten ballots were tallied amazingly fast. Around the time the polls closed, state-run news media reported that Ahmadinejad had a commanding lead of almost 70 percent with slightly less than a fifth of the votes tabulated.

    At first, Ayatollah Khamenei raced out to bless the victory of Ahmadinejad and declare the election over, but when tens of thousands of Mousavi supporters roared into the streets, Khamenei was forced into a historic backpedal. "In a rare break from a long history of cautious moves," reported The New York Times on Monday, "he rushed to bless President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for winning the election, calling on Iranians to line up behind the incumbent even before the standard three days required to certify the results had passed. Then angry crowds swelled in cities around Iran, and he backpedaled, announcing Monday that the 12-member Council of Guardians, which vets elections and new laws, would investigate the vote. Few suggest yet that Ayatollah Khamenei's hold on power is at risk. But, analysts say, he has opened a serious fissure in the face of Islamic rule and one that may pro ve impossible to patch over, particularly given the fierce dispute over the election that has erupted amid the elite veterans of the 1979 revolution. Even his strong links to the powerful Revolutionary Guards - long his insurance policy - may not be decisive as the confrontation in Iran unfolds."

    A week has gone by and the issue remains in doubt. Few expect Mousavi's challenge to be effective, and it is generally believed Ahmadinejad will still be president once the tumult has died down. But a dramatic step forward has been taken by the majority of Iranians who chafe under the religious rule of Khamenei and the mullahs, and the outrage over the election results has opened a long-desired wedge Iranian progressives are using to pry some freedoms from the iron hands of the ruling elite.

Iran 284



De CIA en de Iraanse rellen
wo, 17/06/2009 - 15:24 — Ivo
Bush en Israël dreigde maanden lang met luchtaanvallen richting Iran, maar met de nieuwe president Obama zou er een andere benadering komen. Amerika heeft al eens in het verleden gezegd Iran het liefst met een revolutie te zien veranderen dan met een oorlog. Ook de Bilderberg groep liet weten geen interesse te hebben in een fysieke oorlog met Iran. Dit mede vanwege de grote investeringen daar en het feit dat Iran wel iets anders is dan Irak of Afghanistan.

Amerika heeft al wel ervaring met Iran uit het verleden. In 1953 had Amerika al een handje geholpen bij de opstand van toen. Dit kwam verkeerd aan bij het volk en al snel werd Amerika uit Iran gezet, waarop zij vervolgens Saddam aan de macht hielp in Irak. De rest is wel bekend.

Het lijkt er nu op dat de CIA weer actief is in Iran om alles op alles te zetten om Iran te destabiliseren, zodat ze daar weer een marionettenregering kan plaatsen, net als in Irak. Obama zei deze week nog dat beide kandidaten in Iran fout zijn.



IRAN AND THE CIA (1953)

Frits van Exter en Zijn Reflexen


Sonja meldt het volgende: 

"Er zijn ook plannen voor on-the-job trainingen, Engelse lessen en consultancy – oud-Trouw-hoofdredacteur Frits van Exter komt half april managementadviezen aan hoofdredacties van Koerdische kranten geven."
http://www.dejournalist.nl/achtergronden/bericht/mamoesta-judit-neurink/

Van Exter gaat de journalisten in spé daar vast uitleggen hoe ze zich aan hun ongeconditioneerde reflexen moeten overgeven.'

Dat is allemaal niet gering. Wat gaat Frits de Koerdische journalisten leren? Ik citeer even de voormalige hoofdredacteur van Trouw, en huidige hoofdredacteur van Vrij Nederland. Tegenover Extra, een tijdschrift dat de commerciele massamedia kritisch volgde, verklaarde Van Exter onder de kop: 'De conditionering van de kudde' het volgende: 'Lezers horen wantrouwend te zijn tegenover de media ... De aandacht van de media [wordt] natuurlijk voor een belangrijk deel gestuurd … door de politieke machten … Dat geldt voor de nationale politiek, maar natuurlijk ook voor de internationale politiek … Het heeft voor een deel te maken met de vluchtigheid van het medium. Deels ook volgen de media elkaar, sommige zijn dominanter, en andere lijden aan kuddegedrag … Als je volgend bent, dan betekent dat als een autoriteit, of iemand die gekozen is om een bepaald gezag uit te oefenen, zegt “ik vind dit een belangrijk onderwerp, daar gaan we nou es wat aan doen,” dat je dat ook bekijkt. De dingen waar hij (sic) het niet over heeft, die volg je dus minder… het werkt voor een deel reflexmatig. Reflexen zijn het, je bent daar geconditioneerd in.'

Juist ja, dat belooft niet veel goeds, en het kost de gemeenschap ook nog eens belastinggeld om Koerden de juiste reflexen te leren die nodig zijn om goed geconditioneerd te kunnen reageren in de massamedia. Deze propagandistische houding noemen we gemakshalve persvrijheid. En daar moeten we wel wat voor over hebben. Begrijpt u? En zo helpt de lamme de blinde de brug over.

'The Unknown Citizen

And our Social Psychology workers found
That he was popular with his mates and liked a drink.
The Press are convinced that he bought a paper every day
And that his reactions to advertisements were normal in every way.
Policies taken out in his name prove that he was fully insured,
And his Health-card shows he was once in hospital but left it cured.
Both Producers Research and High-Grade Living declare
He was fully sensible to the advantages of the Instalment Plan
And had everything necessary to the Modern Man,
A phonograph, a radio, a car and a frigidaire.
Our researchers into Public Opinion are content 
That he held the proper opinions for the time of year;
When there was peace, he was for peace:  when there was war, he went.'
W.H. Auden

Judit Neurink van Trouw


De malle Judit Neurink van Trouw schrijft het volgende in haar krant:

Iran gezien vanuit Irak Stel je voor dat in Duitsland de revolutie uitbrak. Nederland zou ademloos aan de TV zitten, en alles willen weten. In Iraaks Koerdistan leeft de onrust in buurland Iran nauwelijks. Alleen als je het onderwerp zelf te berde brengt, willen mensen er nog wel over nadenken. Het is naast de deur, en het is het land waar Irak toch een bloedige, achtjarige oorlog mee heeft uitgevochten, en dat kwam allemaal doordat Khomeini aan de macht was gekomen in 1979.

http://www.trouw.nl/opinie/weblogs/article2791213.ece

'en dat kwam allemaal doordat Khomeini aan de macht was gekomen in 1979.'

Die Judit,
Duitsland viel Nederland binnen omdat een verkeerde man in Den Haag aan de macht was. Mijn God, houdt deze propaganda dan nooit op? Ik bedoel, christelijke journalistiek is en blijft christelijke journalistiek, maar mag het een onsje minder! Feiten Judit, geen meningen. Mevrouw, de journalistiek is een vak, geen hobby.

Oil 55

Hier ging en gaat het allemaal om, de rest is propaganda, die door onze commerciele massamedia wordt verspreid. Om dit te bereiken zijn honderdduizenden slachtoffers gevallen. Offers aan de olie, de meest belangrijke grondstof op aarde.

Iraqi Oil Minister Accused of Mother of All Sell-Outs

Thursday 18 June 2009

by: Patrick Cockburn  |  Visit article original @ The Independent UK

    Furious protests threaten to undermine the Iraqi government's controversial plan to give international oil companies a stake in its giant oilfields in a desperate effort to raise declining oil production and revenues.

    In less than two weeks, on 29 and 30 June, the Iraqi Oil Minister, Hussain Shahristani, will award service contracts to the world's largest oil companies to develop six of Iraq's largest oil-producing fields over 20 to 25 years.

    Senior figures within the Iraqi oil industry have denounced the deal. Fayad al-Nema, the director of the South Oil Company, which comes under the Oil Ministry and produces most of Iraq's crude, said on the weekend: "The service contracts will put the Iraqi economy in chains and shackle its independence for the next 20 years. They squander Iraq's revenues." Mr Nema is reported to have since been fired because of his opposition to the contracts, which he says is shared by many other officials in Iraq's state-owned oil industry.

    The government maintains that it is not compromising the ownership of Iraq's oil reserves - the third-largest in the world at 115 billion barrels - on which the country is wholly dependent to fund its recovery from 30 years of war, sanctions and occupation.

    But the fall in the oil price over the past year has left the government facing a financial crisis; 80 per cent of its revenues go to pay for salaries, food rations and recurrent costs. Little is left for reconstruction and the government is finding it hard to pay even for much-needed items such as an electrical plant from GE and Siemens. 

http://home.planet.nl/~houck006/oorlogomolie2.html 

http://www.hollanddoc.nl/artikelen/18158234/

H.J.A. Hofland 25

Henk Hofland, de nestor van de Nederlandse journalistiek, een collega van wie ik veel geleerd heb, is op zijn retour. De laatste tijd beweert hij van alles zonder dit fatsoenlijk gecontroleerd te hebben. Afgelopen woensdag schreef hij in zijn NRC column:

'We kunnen het jammer vinden maar het Westen heeft geen enkele invloed op het verloop van de machtsstrijd in Iran. Het omgekeerde is wel het geval. Dat wil zeggen: komt Mousavi, de leider van de fluwelen revolutie toch nog als winnaar uit de worsteling tevoorschijn, dan zal dat misschien een kalmerende invloed hebben op de westelijke publieke opinie. Wint Ahmadinejad, de ontkenner van de Holocaust die Israël wil vernietigen, dan is dat regelrecht van invloed op het imago van de moslims in Europa.
Ahmadinejad wordt ervan verdacht bezig te zijn aan de constructie van een kernwapen. De drang in het Westen, en vooral in Israël, om een preventieve aanval te ondernemen, zoals in 1981 toen op die manier de installaties van Saddam Hussein werden vernietigd, zal toenemen.'

Slechts vijf zinnen en toch een aanzienlijk aantal fouten. Ik begin met Hofland's volgende bewering: 'Wint Ahmadinejad, de ontkenner van de Holocaust die Israël wil vernietigen.' Nu de feiten: 'Iran's president: I don't deny Holocaust.'
Zie: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/2007/09/24/2007-09-24_irans_president_i_dont_deny_holocaust-3.html

En: 'The Guardian's Jonathan Steele cites four different translations, from professors to the BBC to the New York Times and even pro-Israel news outlets, in none of those translations is the word "map" used. The closest translation to what the Iranian President actually said is, "The regime occupying Jerusalem must vanish from the page of time," or a narrow relative thereof. In no version is the word "map" used or a context of mass genocide or hostile military action even hinted at. The acceptance of the word "map" seemingly originated with the New York Times, who later had to back away from this false translation. The BBC also wrongly used the word and, in comments to Steele, later accepted their mistake but refused to issue a retraction. "The fact that he compared his desired option - the elimination of "the regime occupying Jerusalem" - with the fall of the Shah's regime in Iran makes it crystal clear that he is talking about regime change, not the end of Israel. As a schoolboy opponent of the Shah in the 1970's he surely did not favor Iran's removal from the page of time. He just wanted the Shah out," writes Steele.'

Zie: http://www.prisonplanet.com/articles/january2007/260107offthemap.htm

Slechts 1 zin en twee koeien van fouten. Dit is geen journalistiek, maar propaganda. De volgende fout: 'Ahmadinejad wordt ervan verdacht bezig te zijn aan de constructie van een kernwapen.' Henk Hofland weet kennelijk niet dat Ahmadinejad's macht in Iran uiterst beperkt is doordat de geestelijken er de macht hebben. Bovendien begon het nucleaire programma onder de Sjah en onder aanmoediging van de VS omdat het Amerikaanse bedrijfsleven er veel geld mee hoopte te verdienen. Hofland verzwijgt daarbij ook nog eens het volgende: Israel bezit naar schatting meer dan 200 kernwapens, waarmee het in het verleden ook gedreigd heeft, ten tijde van de Yom Kippoer oorlog. Mocht Iran een kernwapen ontwikkelen -- volgens de Amerikaanse geheime diensten is dat nog steeds niet het geval -- dan lijkt me dat een politiek niet onverstandig besluit, want zoals bekend is een kernwapen de enige manier om een vijand in het gareel te houden. Zie Noord Korea. Daarom bezitten de kernmachten ook kernwapens terwijl ze volgens het non-proliferatieverdrag gedwongen zijn die af te schaffen. Ook dat verzwijgt Hofland in zijn propagandapraatje. Door een kernwapen kan een land niet langer meer gechanteerd worden door naties die met geweld naar de hegemonie streven, zoals Israel. Het is ook niet Ahmadinejad die door Israel verdacht wordt kernwapens te maken, maar het Iraaanse regime onder leiding van Ali Khamenei, de Iraanse grootayatollah die sinds 1989 de hoogste leider van Iran is. 'According to conventional wisdom, Iran's president is a figurehead with little or no power, while the Leader (often mistakenly called the "Supreme Leader") is the all-powerful commander in chief and decision-maker.' Zie: http://www.truthout.org/061809D

Het is bovendien uiterst onwaarschijnlijk dat als de oppositie aan de macht komt het kernenergieprogramma zal worden beeindigd. Tot nu toe heeft Iran nog steeds niets illegaals gedaan. Zie daarvoor het werk van onder andere de Amerikaanse hoogleraar Trita Parsi.Dan tenslotte nog deze zin: 'De drang in het Westen, en vooral in Israël, om een preventieve aanval te ondernemen.' Beste Henk, die drang bestaat niet meer sinds de komst van Obama. De VS is namelijk failliet, niet alleen wat betreft de Midden Oosten-politiek, maar ook financieel. De VS kan zich geen oorlogsavonturen meer permitteren. Want wie zou zo'n oorlog moeten gaan financieren? China? de EU? Zo nee, wie dan? Het is alleen nog Israel dat volstrekt in strijd met het internationaal recht Iran bedreigt. En waarom? Welnu, het antwoord is simpel. Israel wil de enige kernmacht in het Nabije Oosten zijn, want alleen op die manier kan het zijn buren politiek chanteren. Verzwijg dat de volgende keer niet. En dan nog dit Henk: mocht er onverhoopt toch een gewapend conflict uitbreken in die regio dan kan het Westen alleen maar verliezen. Vergeet dat niet.

Dan nog even dit, deze zin: 'We kunnen het jammer vinden maar het Westen heeft geen enkele invloed op het verloop van de machtsstrijd in Iran.'  Henk, op de een of andere manier verraadt dit toch een merkwaardige veronderstelling, namelijk dat wij westerlingen het recht zouden hebben om in de binnenlandse aangelegenheden van een ander land in te grijpen. Je schrijft dit na vijf eeuwen kolonialisme met al het daaraan verbonden bloedvergieten. Lees All the Shah's Men, eens, An American Coup and the Roots of Middle East Terror van onze vooraanstaande collega Stephen Kinzer, of Imperial Hubris, Why the West is Losing the War on Terror van Michael Scheurer, een voormalige hoge CIA functionaris of American Empire: Blowback, het werk van professor Chalmers Johnson, een van de grootste Amerikaanse Azie-deskundigen. De Koude Oorlog is voorbij Henk, de wereld is veel gecompliceerder geworden, eenvoudige oplossingen bestaan niet.

donderdag 18 juni 2009

Iran 283


Informatie die de Nederlandse commerciele massamedia verzwijgen.

Iran: Who's Diddling Democracy?

Thursday 18 June 2009

by: Steve Weissman, t r u t h o u t | Perspective


Watching the protesters in Tehran, many Americans feel a strong sense of empathy, exhilaration and hope. I strongly share those feelings, especially since I know firsthand the danger the protesters face from government thugs on motorcycles, provocateurs and the secret police. But none of this should blind us to the likelihood that our own government is dangerously meddling in Iran's internal affairs and playing with the lives of those protesters.
Back in 2007, ABC News reported that President George W. Bush had signed a secret "Presidential finding" authorizing the CIA to mount covert "black" operations to destabilize the Iranian government. According to current and former intelligence officials, these operations included "a coordinated campaign of propaganda broadcasts, placement of negative newspaper articles, and the manipulation of Iran's currency and international banking transactions."

In the language of spookery, this was an updated version of the destabilization campaign that the CIA had earlier used to overthrow the progressive government of Salvador Allende in Chile.

The plan had the strong backing of Vice President Dick Cheney, National Security Adviser Steve Hadley and Deputy National Security Adviser Elliott Abrams. As ABC noted, Abrams had earlier pled guilty to withholding information from Congress about efforts to destabilize the Sandinista government in Nicaragua during the Iran-contra affair of the 1980s.

ABC News also reported that American and Pakistani intelligence were backing a separatist militia of militant Sunni tribesmen from the non-Persian Baluchi region of Iran. The group - Jundallah (Soldiers of God) - conducted deadly raids into Iran from bases in Pakistan's Baluchistan Province. Funding for this was reportedly funneled through Iranian exiles with connections in Europe and the Gulf States.

US officials denied any "direct funding" of Jundallah, but admitted regular contact since 2005 with Jundallah's youthful leader Abd el Malik Regi, who was widely reputed to be involved in heroin trafficking from Afghanistan.

"I think everybody in the region knows that there is a proxy war already afoot with the United States supporting anti-Iranian elements in the region as well as opposition groups within Iran," said Vali Nasr, adjunct senior fellow for Mideast studies at the Council on Foreign Relations.

"And this covert action is now being escalated by the new US directive, and that can very quickly lead to Iranian retaliation and a cycle of escalation can follow."

The New Yorker's Seymour Hersh subsequently confirmed the story, reporting that the Presidential finding focused on "on undermining Iran's nuclear ambitions and trying to undermine the government through regime change."

He also reported that the Democratic-controlled Congress had approved up to $400 million to fund the destabilization campaign. "The covert activities involve support of the minority Ahwazi Arab and Baluchi groups and other dissident organizations," said Hersh.

"The irony is that we're once again working with Sunni fundamentalists, just as we did in Afghanistan in the nineteen-eighties," he wrote. "Ramzi Yousef, who was convicted for his role in the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center, and Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, who is considered one of the leading planners of the September 11th attacks, are Baluchi Sunni fundamentalists."

Flash forward to the new presidency of Barack Obama. Did he and his CIA chief Leon Panetta cancel the destabilization program? Not that I can find. The tea leaves are murky, but they suggest that, so far at least, Team Obama remains wedded to the Bush-Cheney-Abrams destabilization of Iran.

The issue came to a head in the last few weeks. Obama wanted to bring the Iranian regime to the table, and the administration knew through scholars like Selig Harrison that the ayatollahs wanted a signal that the new president would stop supporting terrorists within Iran. At the end of May, the chance to send that signal came when Jundallah claimed credit for a suicide bombing that killed 25 people and injured as many as 125 others at a prominent Shiite mosque in the southeastern city of Zahedan.

Both the White House and State Department immediately denounced the bombing and denied any involvement in what Obama's spokesman Robert Gibbs explicitly called "recent terrorist attacks inside Iran."

Several news articles then reported that the administration was considering placing Jundallah on the State's Department's list of terrorist organizations, which would have signaled a major shift in policy. But, suddenly, the administration backed away from making the terrorist designation or from otherwise indicating that it would stop the destabilization campaign.

To the contrary, in the build-up to the Iranian election, Washington sharpened its propaganda efforts. According to Ken Timmerman, the executive director of the right-wing Foundation for Democracy in Iran, the Persian Service of Voice of America (VOA) clearly sided with the anti-Ahmadinejad candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi against those dissident groups who wanted to boycott the election entirely, the position Timmerman favored.
Lees verder: http://www.truthout.org/061809J

De Pro Israel Lobby 137





Censoring Pro-Palestinian Political Messages?

Was it policy or pressure that led Lamar Outdoor Advertising to tear down billboards featuring a pro-Palestinian political message?

Judge for yourself. Lamar, which operates over 150 outdoor advertising companies in more than 40 states and Puerto Rico, entered into an eight week contract in April with a local New Mexico grassroots group called the Coalition to Stop $30 Billion to Israel to provide ten billboards throughout the Albuquerque area. Each carried this message: “Tell Congress: Stop Killing Children. No More Military Aid to Israel.”
Apture™

Motivated by concern over an Israeli military incursion into Gaza that left more than 1400 Palestinians dead – most civilians — and another 5,000 injured, Coalition members paid for the messages to register their objection to a 2007 Bush Administration Memorandum of Understanding that provides $30 billion U.S. taxpayer dollars to Israel over a ten-year period – an understanding that the Obama Administration has now adopted as its own. Much of the money will be used to purchase American-made weapons.

Surprisingly, after just three weeks, the billboards were abruptly taken down.


Coalition leaders say correspondence they received from Lamar executives indicated they had removed the billboards – despite the fact that the company’s own graphics department had designed them in cooperation with the Coalition — after having received numerous complaints. Nonetheless, the Coalition and Lamar’s corporate officers agreed on May 18 to a modified redesign of the billboards.


But just one week later, Lamar officials turned around again and rescinded their approval. Coalition members say they were told that the company’s switchboard had been inundated with phone calls objecting to the billboards.

Lamar’s Vice President of Governmental Relations Hal Kilshaw says there’s no conspiracy or censorship at play, however. Instead, Kilshaw offers a much simpler explanation for the contretemps: “We made a mistake – twice!”

Both the original and the revised billboards violated the firm’s Copy Acceptance Policy, Kilshaw says, since it prohibits “misleading and offensive” advertising. The first effort was misleading, he explains, “because Congress is not killing children.” And the second was offensive, “because it still had a picture of a young girl and a tank.”

Yet Kilshaw’s explanation raises as many questions as it answers. If the first design was so “misleading,” why did Lamar agree to accept it in the first place? And why did it stay up for three weeks? “We erred,” Kilshaw says steadfastly. “We might have had an over-zealous ad salesperson. But we took it down after it was brought to the attention of the General Manager in Albuquerque.”

What about the second design – also created in concert with Lamar executives? “We erred again in approving a redesign and then modifying it,” Kilshaw explains. “There was some interim wrangling, we agreed to change it – and then upon re-thinking, decided the revision was offensive.”

Asked what Lamar officials found so “offensive” about the second design, Kilshaw said there is “no black and white way to define what is ‘offensive,’ but like the Supreme Court once said about pornography, I know it when I see it.”

Following their second ‘error,’ Lamar executives came back with three other proposed designs:


“We rejected each and every one of these choices,” says Coalition spokesperson Rich Forer. “None had any images. We asked Lamar to include an image of a tank to accompany very similar wording in the three choices Lamar offered us. We also told them an image would not be necessary if they included the following two phrases: ‘military aid’ and ‘tax dollars.’ All of these suggestions were unacceptable to them - despite the fact is the U.S. has agreed to give $30 billion dollars of taxpayer money to Israel over ten years for military spending, and Israel in return must spend about 76% of the money on U.S. made weapons. So using ‘tax dollars’ and ‘military aid’ are unequivocally accurate.”

Earlier this month, negotiations finally reached an impasse. The design that Lamar proposed was unacceptable to the Coalition, which regarded its message as “too watered down and almost meaningless,” and found it “vague and missing key elements to the message central in our campaign to end the cycle of military violence in this conflict.”

As Coalition member Rita Erickson explained to Lamar executives in an email: “If there were no occupation and oppressive living conditions for Palestinians, there would be no conflict; hence, the impression that we appear to be more sympathetic to Palestinians than Israeli Jews.” But Erickson, like Forer, was also quick to note, “We sincerely care about the human rights of both and are very clear that the occupation is not in Israel’s best interests.”

In a last-ditch attempt at compromise, the Coalition sent still more possible choices for billboards:

1. Tell Congress: No More Tax Dollars for Military Aid to Israel
(No Image Necessary)
2. Tell Congress: Stop Giving Taxpayer Dollars to Israel
(image of tank included)
3. Tell Congress: No More Military Aid to Israel
(image of tank included)
4. Any of the above messages with an image of an Israeli woman on one side and a Palestinian woman on the other side

The emailed response from Lamar? “Sorry original copy as proposed only.”

All of the Coalition’s money has now been refunded, and Company executives say they reserve the right to reject advertising for any reason whatsoever. But Hal Kilshaw wants to make it clear that “We don’t make decisions on political grounds here.” Acknowledging the company had received “lots of comments,” he says he understands “why the Coalition might think this is political, but it’s not. We don’t disagree with their message - it just violates our copy acceptance policy.”

Coalition members aren’t so sure, however. “Their local executive told us they took the first one down because of complaints,” says Rich Forer. “As for the second design, someone — either from the company or an infiltrator within our Coalition — must have notified people in the Jewish community, because there were lots of complaints about that one as well, even though it wasn’t made public!” Forer says information from Lamar employees indicates that pro-Israel groups “may have conducted a pressure campaign to get the billboards removed.” He and the others in the Coalition believe the protests were part of a deliberate and organized attempt to silence their right to free speech, and that Lamar is bowing to the pressure. They believe “a coordinated campaign to suppress the public’s right to be informed” about the Israeli Government’s policies and actions against the Palestinians has been waged against them.

“In contrast to the open debate about U.S.-Israel relations that occurs in much of the world, including Europe and even Israel,” the Coalition noted in a recent press release, “this level of censorship is all too common whenever somebody speaks out about Israel’s policies, the role of the U.S. in financing those policies and how, by doing so, the U.S. violates its own laws, specifically the Arms Export Control and Foreign Assistance Acts.”

What do you think? Was it policy or pressure that caused Lamar to cancel its contract?

The Coalition is now calling “on all people who are concerned about human rights to contact Lamar’s corporate offices and respectfully request they put the billboards back up as agreed to on May 18:

Kevin P. Reilly, Jr., President and CEO
Lamar Outdoor Advertising - Corporate
Phone: (225) 926-1000

Email: twall@lamar.com

Mailing Address: P. O. Box 66338, Baton Rouge, LA 70896