Saturday, July 31, 2004

The Neocon plot against Iran

Dual Loyalties: Still Dreaming of Tehran: "For the past two years, he has maintained a relationship with Manucher Ghorbanifar, the Iranian wheeler-dealer who worked closely with him in Iran/contra. Ledeen introduced Ghorbanifar to a key neoconservative official, Harold Rhode, a longtime Pentagon staffer who speaks Arabic, Farsi, Turkish and Hebrew and who until recently served in Iraq as a liaison between the Defense Department and Ahmad Chalabi. Rhode and another Pentagon official, Larry Franklin, have been talking to Ghorbanifar about options for regime change in Tehran. 'They were looking at getting introduced to alleged sources inside Iran, who could give them some inside information on the struggles in Iran,' said Vince Cannistraro, a former CIA counterterrorism chief. Ghorbanifar, he said, was spinning tall tales about alleged (but unsubstantiated) transfers of Iraqi uranium to Iran's nuclear weapons program.

Rhode and Franklin were critical players in the campaign for war against Iraq. In 2002 they helped organize the Pentagon's Office of Special Plans, the Iraq war-planning unit whose intelligence staffers are now under investigation by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence for allegedly manipulating evidence about Iraq's nonexistent weapons of mass destruction and ties to terrorism. Both the OSP and the Rhode-Franklin effort on Iran were run out of the office of Douglas Feith, the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy and a key neocon ally. Their initiative on Iran reportedly drew a sharp protest from the State Department. Newsday quoted a US official who said that the entire effort was designed to 'antagonize Iran so that they get frustrated and then by their reactions harden US policy against them.' "

Iraqi judge to visit Iran about Saddam - (United Press International)

Iraqi judge to visit Iran about Saddam - (United Press International)

"Iraqi judge to visit Iran about Saddam

Tehran, Iran, Jul. 31 (UPI) -- Iran said Saturday the top Iraqi judge hearing the trial of former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein will visit Iran to make a case against the former leader.

The official Iranian Islamic Republic News Agency quoted Hussein Kazemi Qommi, the Iranian chargé d'affaires in Baghdad as saying Judge Salem Chalabi is expected in Iran as part of the case being built against Saddam.

Qommi said Chalabi's visit came within the "framework of the lawsuit that Iran is preparing against Saddam regarding the crimes he committed" during the 1980-88 Iraq-Iran war.

The diplomat did not mention a date for such a visit.

IRNA quoted Qommi as accusing the former Iraqi president of using chemical weapons against his country, saying the "dictator used chemical bombs against defenseless civilians and killed prisoners of war.""

Iran FM: Iraq is mismanaged Iran FM: Iraq is mismanaged, Tehran not committed to suspend uranium enrichment: "
Iran FM: Iraq is mismanaged, Tehran not committed to suspend uranium enrichment
31-07-2004, 14:56

Iran's Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi Saturday referred to the anti-Iran remarks made recently by certain Iraqi officials and said they constituted proof the neighboring country was being "maladministered."

Speaking at a joint press conference with the visiting Azeri Foreign Minister Elmar Mohammedyarob, he reiterated that the chaotic situation that characterizes Iraq in recent months is because the country is mismanaged.

"When the head of state forth with rejects what is being said by another government official it puts into question whether the views of others in the same government is being listened to," he added, according to IRNA.

Kharrazi then urged Iraqi officials to appoint a government spokesman.

"Those who oppose Iran-Iraq relations encourage their agents to speak against Iran without thinking of the consequences. We give importance to the remarks of Iraqi high-ranking officials and we listen to them. We hope Iraqi officials treat us in the same way and will correct the current state of affairs by reining in foreigners and remants of Saddam Hussein's regime who continue to view us in the negative," he added.

In response to a question on Iran's decision to resume uranium enrichment in defiance of criticism from the international community, he replied that Iran was still committed to the suspension not withstanding the European Union's failure to come up to its commitments.

"However, given that the Europeans failed to remain committed to the terms of the Brussels agreement, Iran is not anymore bound to such an agreement, in particular, to keeping its unilateral decision to suspend production of centrifuge parts," he added. ("

US Suffers Loss in Economic War against Iran

Middle America: ZAMAN DAILY: US Suffers Loss in Economic War against Iran: "ZAMAN DAILY: US Suffers Loss in Economic War against Iran
ZAMAN DAILY NEWSPAPER (2004073111025): "US Denies Erdogan's Iran Visit Disturbed Washington

US Ankara Embassy Chargé D'affairs Robert S. Deutsch said that Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's visit to Iran did not bother America.

Deutsch indicated yesterday that he believes Erdogan conveyed the issues that the US is most sensitive about to Iranian officials.

On his way back home, Erdogan said: "We have not received an official statement from the US yet. All we know is what we read or see in the media."

During a press conference in Iran Erdogan replied to a question about America's disturbance, saying that Turkey would continue its policy of good relations with it neighbors. Erdogan did not deny the claim that Washington was disturbed by the visit. A newspaper report run prior to Erdogan's trip indicates that Turkey's natural gas agreement with Iran created some uneasiness in Washington. Diplomatic sources confirmed the claim.

Erdogan reminded that many countries continue to make investments in Iran. "Turkey has just as much right to make investments with neighboring countries as they do," he declared.

US Ankara Embassy Chargé D'affairs Robert S.Deutsch replied to Zaman's questions during his visit to the Adana Consulate. He denied the claim that Erdogan's visit disturbed the US. He said that Washington's opinions on Iran are well known. Deutsch reminded that Iran's support of terrorism, efforts to secretly produce nuclear weapons and policies against Middle Eastern peace bother America.

"The US took some measures concerning this and has applied embargoes on Iran and Libya since 1991. These embargos are applied to companies making investments in the oil industry. The US Congress does not want international firms to engage in commercial relations over 20 million dollars with Iranian companies."

The American diplomat added that they wanted Turkey's commercial relations to refrain from contributing to the strengthening of Iran's oil industry. ""