Author: mechanic


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Post time 2010-10-29 05:45:40 |Display all floors
Originally posted by mechanic at 2010-10-21 06:22 AM
Chávez and Ahmadinejad – common revolutionary ideal

Venezuela President Hugo Chavez has just concluded his two-day visit to the Islamic Republic. It was his 9th visit to the country which h ...

but let's not forget kim jong il and bin laden who r rite this minute under the monkey missile scope.

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Post time 2010-10-29 16:29:03 |Display all floors
Originally posted by seneca at 2010-10-29 12:37

Methinks you are contradicting yourself with a sentence in post 30: I do not live according to what others think of me...

You DO care what Kyosan thinks of you and those that think like yo ...

You're wrong.  He's the last person I care about how he thinks of me.  But he is american, and therefor I hold him under higher standards than anyone else.
I can criticize his thinking where I wouldn't criticize someone from another country.

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Post time 2010-10-29 22:03:10 |Display all floors

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Post time 2010-10-29 22:04:02 |Display all floors

The Iran That the Western Media Don't Want You to See

by Flynt Leverett and Hillary Mann Leverett

When Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad traveled to Lebanon last week, attracting huge crowds and what seemed like an overwhelmingly positive public response, many Western analysts dismissed the trip as a kind of cheap political trick, meant to distract attention from Ahmadinejad's allegedly unpopular standing at home. But, after returning from Lebanon, Ahmadinejad made a trip to Ardabil, one of Iran's three Azeri-majority provinces. One of our readers provided a link to photos of the crowds that greeted Ahmadinejad in the provincial capital (also called Ardabil), which we very much appreciated.

That Ahmadinejad could attract this sort of popular response in Ardabil is particularly noteworthy. According to the official results of the Islamic Republic's June 12, 2009 presidential election, Ahmadinejad won a majority of the votes cast in two of Iran's Azeri-majority provinces, Ardabil and East Azerbaijan. His chief opponent in the election, Mir-Hossein Mousavi, won the majority of the votes cast in the third, West Azerbaijan. Many Western critics of the election pointed to these outcomes as clear evidence of fraud. How could Ahmadinejad have won two of the three Azeri-majority provinces against Mousavi, who is ethnically Azeri? Among the more absurd observations that Karim Sadjadpour has made about Iranian politics during the past year and a half was his observation that this was about as plausible as John McCain winning the African-American vote in his 2008 presidential contest against Barack Obama.

But that kind of fact-free analysis ignores Ahmadinejad's long, personal history in Iran's Azeri-majority regions. Ahmadinejad was a provincial official in West Azerbaijan early in his career and served as governor of Ardabil during 1993-1997. In the second round of the Islamic Republic's 2005 presidential election, a run-off contest between Ahmadinejad and former President Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, Ahmadinejad won substantial majorities of the votes cast in all three Azeri-majority provinces. In 2009, Ahmadinejad's margin of victory in Ardabil and East Azerbaijan was smaller than in 2005, and he narrowly lost the popular vote in West Azerbaijan (Ahmadinejad's percentage of the vote there was roughly 47 percent).

Thus, the official results indicate that Mousavi attracted a higher percentage of the vote in Azeri-majority areas (and also in Baluchistan) than he did across the country as a whole. But the results also indicate that Ahmadinejad retained a significant level of popular support in Azeri-majority areas. The reception he received in Ardabil a few days ago would seem to confirm that reading. By arguing that Ahmadinejad has a substantial base of genuine popular support we do not mean to imply that he does not face opposition. We judge Ahmadinejad to be, in his political context, a uniquely effective populist leader. But he is also a deeply polarizing figure. That part of the Iranian body politic which dislikes Ahmadinejad seems really to dislike him. Nevertheless, the available evidence indicates that popular support for Ahmadinejad is greater than dedicated opposition to him. And, of course, the vast majority of those who might be counted among Ahmadinejad's political opponents have no interest in undermining the Islamic Republic's fundamental integrity and stability.

Unfortunately, Western media coverage of/commentary about Iranian politics seems unable, for the most part, to take account of inputs from sources outside of north Tehran and expatriate supporters of the Green Movement. As part of our work on over the past year, we have tried to highlight instances where high-profile Western media outlets seemed to abandon normal standards of journalistic rigor and perhaps even integrity in their coverage of Iranian issues. For example, we critiqued a number of stories by Nazila Fathi of the New York Times along these lines (see here and here). In our critique, we identified specific instances in which Ms. Fathi sought to pass off un-sourced assertions as factual claims. In other instances, Ms. Fathi sourced apparent claims of fact only to opposition or other anti-Islamic Republic websites, but without identifying those sources as such. In one instance, we even found that Ms. Fathi's link to a particular website did not substantiate the claim for which she was using it as a source. And, in an especially egregious lapse, Ms. Fathi neglected to inform her readers that the "Kurdish rebel group" to which five Kurdish activists executed in Iran had belonged -- PJAK -- had been formally designated by the Obama Administration as a terrorist organization. (The five Kurdish activists were executed as a consequence of having been convicted of criminal charges stemming from their alleged participation in lethal terrorist attacks inside Iran.) After we wrote about these agenda-driven lapses in journalistic professionalism, we noticed more of an effort to have Ms. Fathi's stories source particular points in a more credible, or at least transparent, way. Then, we noticed that the New York Times was no longer running her "reporting" on Iran from her outpost in Toronto and we thought that might represent a real step towards accountability. But, instead, she has been rewarded for her past performance with the opportunity to spend the 2010-2011 academic year at Harvard University as a Nieman Fellow.

But the problem, of course, goes well beyond one journalist at one newspaper. That was affirmed for us by a story this week by the Christian Science Monitor's Scott Peterson. Scott Peterson's coverage of Iranian politics over the last year and a half has regularly exhibited deficiencies in adherence to normal standards of journalistic professionalism similar to those observed in Ms. Fathi's work, prompted by a similarly "pro-Green" outlook. Just last week, Peterson offered his own take on Ahmadinejad's Lebanese trip, entitled, "Ahmadinejad Visit to Lebanon Brings Little Rapture Back Home." In his article this week, about the visit of the Islamic Republic's Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei to Qom, Mr. Peterson ignores the crowds that turned out to support Khamenei (for video of the mass crowds in Qom for Khamenei, see below) and focuses instead on a sourcesless claim that "Iran's senior clerics were divided by the June 12, 2009, presidential vote, in which Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was anointed president for a second term amid credible charges of fraud."

Perhaps we should count it as progress of a sort -- and possibly even a marginal indicator of our impact -- that Mr. Peterson now depicts assertions that the June 2009 election was fraudulent as "credible charges of fraud." But Mr. Peterson offers absolutely no substantiation for this depiction. What are the charges of fraud? Who made these "credible charges of fraud"? And what, exactly, made their charges credible?

For those who care about objective assessments of the available evidence, there is no better place to look than two papers written by regular readers of Eric Brill (see here); and Reza Esfandiari and Yousef Bozorgmehr (see here). Unless one can refute the analyses presented in these two papers, then there are no "credible charges of fraud" regarding the June 2009 presidential election. There is only agenda-driven assertion.

Regrettably, agenda-driven "journalism" continues to distort discussions of Iran-related issues in the United States and other Western countries, helping perpetuate dysfunctional policies toward the Islamic Republic which should have been discredited and discarded long ago.

Flynt Leverett directs the Iran Project at the New America Foundation, where he is also a Senior Research Fellow. Additionally, he teaches at Pennsylvania State University’s School of International Affairs. Hillary Mann Leverett is CEO of Strategic Energy and Global Analysis (STRATEGA), a political risk consultancy. She is also Senior Lecturer and Senior Research Fellow at Yale University’s Jackson Institute for Global Affairs. This article was first published in The Race for Iran on 20 October 2010 under a Creative Commons license.

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Post time 2010-11-2 21:29:50 |Display all floors

Fidel Castro

For more than 50 years Cuba (its population is currently about 11.25 million) has stood up to the Anglos.

That’s because it carried out an authentic socialist revolution and has ceaselessly fought to defend and extend it in the teeth of remorseless pressure from the US..

Fidel is truly heroic!

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Post time 2010-11-19 01:32:06 |Display all floors

'World powers source of global crises'

Thu Nov 18, 2010

Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says world powers are the source of crises and danger in the world and have caused global problems with their injustice, bullying and occupations.

In a Thursday meeting with of Azeri clerics, lawmakers and scientist, Ahmadinejad said, "For more than 60 years they have displaced millions of Palestinian people and imprisoned thousands of others by occupying Palestine."

"Foreigners used the pretext of fighting terrorism and drugs to invade the region; this is while their presence in the region has increased insecurity and drug [trafficking]."

"They kill Pakistanis, and by meddling in Sudan they have created many problems," Ahmadinejad added.

"By stealing the wealth of nations and [creating] social gap, they (world powers) forced some Asian and African nations to suffer poverty and be deprived of sanitation and education," the Iranian chief executive said.

He described the relations between Iran and Azerbaijan as amicable and said, "Political, economic and cultural cooperation of the two nations is continuously expanding."

The Iranian chief executive arrived in the Azeri capital of Baku on Wednesday to attend the third meeting of the leaders of Caspian littoral states in order to negotiate the legal regime of the sea and to discuss relations with Azeri officials.

The Caspian Sea is the largest enclosed body of water on earth by area, variously classed as the world's largest lake or a full-fledged sea.

The maritime and seabed boundaries of the Caspian Sea have yet to be demarcated among Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Russia and Turkmenistan -- the five countries bordering the sea.

Despite extensive negotiations, the legal status of the Caspian Sea has been unclear since the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991.

The Caspian Sea legal regime is based on two agreements signed between Iran and the Soviet Union in 1921 and 1940.

Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan -- the three new littoral states, established after the collapse of Soviet Russia -- do not recognize the prior treaties, triggering a debate on the future status of the sea.

No Virgin Girl in America

American can not live without SEX.

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Post time 2010-11-23 07:36:17 |Display all floors

Evo Morales

Bolivian leader lectures Gates about US behavior

By ANNE GEARAN, AP National Security Writer Anne Gearan, Ap National Security Writer – 27 mins ago

SANTA CRUZ, Bolivia – Bolivian President Evo Morales had a blunt message for the visiting U.S. Pentagon chief on Monday: Latin American nations will pick their own friends and business partners, including Iran, regardless of U.S. opinion.

The colorful leftist leader delivered an hourlong welcome to delegates at a regional defense conference that included U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates. Morales never mentioned Gates by name. But most of the speech, and all of the applause lines, were clearly directed at the Pentagon chief and former head of the CIA.

Bolivia is more democratic and representative than the United States, Morales said, and democracy would improve in the entire region if the United States stopped interfering. Bolivia receives $70 million in U.S. aid annually, much of it for popular nutrition and health programs.

He mentioned the spread of Iranian and Russian business and other ties in Latin America, and said it is not the U.S. place to complain.

"Bolivia under my government will have an agreement, an alliance, to anyone in the world," Morales said. "Nobody will forbid us," he said to applause.

Morales has allied Bolivia with Venezuela, Cuba and Iran, and drawn criticism from the U.S. for the Tehran ties.

Last month Bolivia said it is interested in buying Iranian-made airplanes and helicopters for military training and transportation. Bolivia also wants to team up with Iran to build a nuclear power plant and establish a joint development bank. Venezuela is teaming with Russia on a civilian nuclear plant.

Gates didn't seem fazed by the one-hour monologue. A day earlier he had warned that countries doing business with Iran should remember that Iran is under international sanctions over its nuclear program. He also questioned whether Iran has the technical capability to help another nations develop civilian nuclear power.

"As a sovereign state Bolivia obviously can have relationships with any country in the world that it wishes to," Gates said Sunday. "I think Bolivia needs to be mindful of the number of United Nations Security Council resolutions that have been passed with respect to Iran's behavior."

Gates addressed the defense ministers' forum later Monday. His remarks were brief and focused on cooperation across the Western Hemisphere. He did not mention Morales or the wider current on anti-Americanism among some Latin American nations.

"Let us not lose sight of our shared dreams and common aspirations of a free, prosperous and secure Americas," Gates said.

The popular Morales, an ethnic Aymara and former coca-growers' union leader, was first elected in December 2005 and recently declared that he intends to run again in 2014. His closest ally is the even more fiercely anti-U.S. leader of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez.

Morales ticked off a history of attempted coups, alleged election- and vote-tampering, military meddling and vague conspiracies involving the United States. Some of it is based in truth, although the U.S. denies that a former ambassador tried to engineer a coup against Morales in 2008, as he alleged Monday.

Morales kicked out the then-U.S. ambassador in 2008, and the two nations have not normalized diplomatic relations since. Morales also expelled the U.S. DEA on suspicion of espionage.

He denies that coca grown in Bolivia feeds the worldwide demand for cocaine, although the country produces vastly more of the crop that would be needed for its traditional and legal medicinal use in Bolivia.

Morales also alleged U.S. involvement in coup attempts or political upheaval in Venezuela in 2002, Honduras in 2009 and Ecuador in 2010.

"The empire of the United States won," in Honduras, Morales said, a reference to the allegations of former Honduran President Manuel Zelaya that the U.S. was behind his ouster.

"The people of the Americas in Venezuela, Bolivia and Ecuador, we won," Morales continued. "We are three to one with the United States. Let's see what the future brings."

U.S. officials have repeatedly denied involvement in all of those cases and critics of the United States have produced no clear evidence.

Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa called a Sept. 30 police revolt over benefit cuts a coup attempt in disguise, but he did not accuse the United States of being involved.

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