Thursday, December 09, 2004

FOX News Supports Terrorism

Open Letter to FOX News: "Open Letter to FOX News

Massoud Khodabandeh
October 17, 2004
I am writing this letter as an Iranian who has left Mr. Rajavi’s cult like organisation due to its involvement with Saddam’s crimes against humanity and war crimes. When I left the MKO I was an executive member of the Mojahedin, commander in the NLA and a member of the NCRI. I was also the head of Mr. Rajavi’s security. Mr. Jafarzadeh for some time worked under my command and I am therefore well aware of his activities in the US during the rule of Saddam Hussein. I am also well aware of his and Mr. Mohaddesin’s (his boss) contacts with the various services in the US on behalf of Mr. Rajavi.

Your news channel introduces Alireza Jafarzadeh as an analyst on Iran. In this role he makes various assertions concerning Iran’s nuclear programme, terrorism, Islamic fundamentalism and Iranian and Iraqi politics. He also gives advice to the Americans, Europeans and Iraqis on how to deal with the Iranian ruling regime as well as how to move forward in Iraq.

Mr Jafarzadeh was, of course, known to everyone for well over a decade as the US spokesman for the Mojahedin-e Khalq organisation and latterly the National Council of Resistance of Iran, both of which are now listed as terrorist entities in the USA. Neither you nor Mr. Jafarzadeh has never put an end in his involvement with terrorism and Mr. Rajavi’s cult, nor rejected violence and terror for achieving political gains. The past involvement of Mr. Jafarzadeh and his masters has never been denied either.

There is a great deal of controversy surrounding Iran and how best the US should relate to that country. There is even greater controversy over the behaviour of your company and its direct involvement in providing a mouthpiece to a terrorist organisation. In the interests of proper balance of views and journalistic integrity we would like to see FOX News host a televised debate which allows other experts on Iran to challenge Mr Jafarzadeh’s analyses on all the issues which he speaks of on your programmes.

There are several million Iranians living outside Iran in the USA, Europe and elsewhere who have a very strong interest in these issues. Many people in general are interested in how the USA will move forward on the issue of Iran, Iraq and the war against terrorism. We are sure such a debate would attract a wide audience.

I have enclosed a copy of the letter sent to British MP, Mr Win Griffiths suggesting a similar debate.

Please let me know if we can offer you assistance in organising a televised debate with Mr. Jafarzadeh (whether as your analyst or as a representative of Mr. Rajavi, Mojahedin, Council of Resistance, etc.) on the situation of Iran and his comments and advice in support of terrorists and Saddam’s agents in this way.

Massoud Khodabandeh

Iran Interlink organisation"

Jerusalem Post | Poll: Over 50% of Germans equate IDF with Nazi army

Jerusalem Post | Breaking News from Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World: "Poll: Over 50% of Germans equate IDF with Nazi army
By ETGAR LEFKOVITS

Six decades after the mass extermination of six million Jews in the Holocaust by Nazi Germany, more than 50 percent of Germans believe that Israel's present-day treatment of the Palestinians is similar to what the Nazis did to the Jews during World War II, a German survey released this weekend shows.

51 percent of respondents said that there is not much of a difference between what Israel is doing to the Palestinians today and what the Nazis did to the Jews during the Holocaust, compared to 49% who disagreed with such a comparison, according to the poll carried out by Germany's University of Bielefeld.

The survey also found that 68 percent of Germans believe that Israel is waging a "war of extermination" against the Palestinians, while some 32% disagreed with such a statement.

In a first reaction, the chairman of Yad Vashem's directorate Avner Shalev said Tuesday that the poll's results, which he termed "very worrisome," were indicative of a long-suppressed felling of anti-Semitism among the mainstream "so-called liberals" population which now, under the coating of anti-Israeli criticism, are becoming legitimate again. He added that the poll's results, which he said any objective person would repudiate, are also the result of the release of pent-up feelings of guilt built up from the Holocaust.

"The energies which bring about such answers come to protect feelings of guilt," Shalev said. 62 percent of respondents in the poll said that they were sick of "all this harping" of German crimes against Jews, while 68% said that they found it "annoying" that Germans today are still held to blame for Nazi crimes against Jews.

The survey, which aimed to determine what is "the cut off point" between criticism of Israel and anti-Semitism, finds that while "classical" anti-Semitism in Germany is on the wane, secondary anti-Semitism, often couched in anti-Israel views are on the rise, especially among the Left.

The German researchers who conducted the polls conceded that the results showing a majority of Germans equating Israel's Policy with Nazi Atrocities "may be worrying," but concurred with Yad Vashem's Shalev that the media coverage of the Israeli-Palestinians conflict has made such analogies part of the public discourse.

"When you see an image in the newspaper, in a caricature, which is repeated day in and day out that Sharon is equal to Hitler than the image catches in your head because maybe you do not like Jews so much or maybe you hate Jews, and than this works out excellent," Shalev said, stressing that education of the young generation was the key to stemming such a tide.

In the survey, 82 percent of the respondents polled said that they are angered by the way Israel is treating the Palestinians, while 45 percent of those polled said that considering Israel's policies it was "no surprise" that people were against them.

The telephone poll of 3000 "non-migrant" respondents, which was taken in May and June, did not come with a margin of error.

"This is a very sad commentary about what is happening in Europe today which needs to send a very strong warning signal about how much work needed to be done to deal with these attitudes," said, Dr. Ephraim Zuroff, the Israel director of the Los Angeles-based Simon Wiesenthal Center.

Due in part to its blighted history, Germany is generally considered to be one of the more supportive countries of Israel in Europe."

[Ainc-alc] Introduction

[Ainc-alc] Introduction:

"Roozbeh Pournader roozbeh@sharif.edu
Sun, 15 Apr 2001 01:32:44 +0430 (IRDT)

Previous message: [Ainc-alc] Introduction
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Messages sorted by: [ date ] [ thread ] [ subject ] [ author ]

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

It seems that I should introduce myself. Please accept this for a start:

Name: Roozbeh Pournader
Organization: Sharif University of Technology, and High Council of
Informatics of Iran.
Position: Standards Expert
Country: Iran
Email: roozbeh@sharif.edu
Experience: character sets, Internet standards and protocols, linguistics

--roozbeh"

Guardian Unlimited | Special reports | Iraq faces descent into chaos, says CIA chief

Guardian Unlimited | Special reports | Iraq faces descent into chaos, says CIA chief: "Iraq faces descent into chaos, says CIA chief

Report leaked as 1,000th US soldier dies in action

Suzanne Goldenberg in Washington
Wednesday December 8, 2004
The Guardian

The Bush administration's robust assertions that the situation in Iraq would improve with next month's elections were badly shaken yesterday with the leak of a gloomy end-of-tour cable from the departing CIA station chief in Baghdad.
The bleak assessment, reported in yesterday's New York Times, warned that Iraq would descend even deeper into violent chaos unless the government was able to assert its authority and deliver concrete economic improvements.

It arrived on a day when US forces recorded the death of the 1,000th soldier to be killed in combat since the beginning of the war.

In all, 1,275 US service personnel have died since the invasion on March 20 last year. This figure includes accidents, suicides and other deaths not classed as killed in action. A total of 9,765 US troops have been wounded.

No official totals of Iraqi deaths are available. Estimates range from 14,000 to tens of thousands of civilians and around 5,000 troops.

The classified assessment was sent to CIA headquarters in Virginia late last month as the officer ended a year-long tour in Iraq. It was bolstered by a similar assessment from a second CIA officer, Michael Kostiw, who serves as a senior adviser to the agency chief, Porter Goss.

The outlook offered by the station chief echoes several similar warnings from officials in Washington and Baghdad. An intelligence estimate prepared for the White House last August said that Iraq's security situation could remain tenuous at best until the end of 2005, and warned the country was at risk of civil war.

But the latest warning is particularly ill-timed for the White House, which has been focused on assuring Americans that the situation in Iraq would improve with the coming elections. It is also a personal embarrassment for Mr Goss, a former Republican congressman who had made it his mission to stem the flow of embarrassing leaks from the agency.

In a memo last month, Mr Goss wrote that the agency had a dual task - to provide intelligence, and to support administration policies. "As agency employees we do not identify with, support or champion opposition to the administration or its policies," the memo said.

As station chief, the unnamed CIA official supervised more than 300 operatives, the largest intelligence operation since the Vietnam war, and their assessment carries authority.

While the senior US military commander in Iraq, General George Casey Jr, initially raised no objections to the CIA assessment, the New York Times reported that the US ambassador, John Negroponte, had filed a lengthy message of dissent in which he argued that the US had made considerable progress in controlling the insurgency.

Mr Bush did not directly comment on the CIA report yesterday, but in a speech to US marines in Camp Pendle ton, California, he described the war in Iraq as part of the global struggle against terrorism and warned: "As election day approaches, we can expect further violence from the terrorists.

"You see, the terrorists understand what is at stake. They know they have no future in a free Iraq, because free people will never choose their own enslavement. They know democracy will give Iraqis a stake in the future of their country."

Throughout the speech, Mr Bush referred to the insurgents, who are largely Iraqis opposed to the US occupation, as terrorists.

In conversations with reporters about the assessment yesterday, agency officials admitted that efforts to train local Iraqi security forces were not keeping pace with the growth of an increasingly violent insurgency. So far, the official strength of the Iraqi security forces is put at 83,000 although only 47,000 have been fully armed and trained.

The new Iraqi government could also expect a new wave of violence if the elections are boycotted by the Sunni minority."

(Dis)Honorable Congressman Ed Towns Linked To Terrorists

Feminist Event Calendar - 12/17/2003: Panel Discussion (Human Rights in Iran), NY:

Ed Towns co-sponsored this event with the Near East Policy Research, Inc, JBOC

"Feminist Calendar - Event Description

Panel Discussion (Human Rights in Iran)
Date: 12/17/2003 Time: 12:00 Noon Event Type: Conference

Description: in remembrance of Ms. Zahra Kazemi, the Canadian photojournalist, killed under torture in captivity, and in support of the UN’s censure of rights abuses in Iran

Agenda:
Panel Discussion (Human Rights in Iran)
Recent Students Uprising Photo Gallery

Wednesday, December 17, 2003, at 12:00 Noon
UN Plaza, 2nd Floor
New York, NY 10017

R.S.V.P. (845)480-1603

Sponsors:
Honorable Congressman Ed Towns (D-New York)
Association of Iranian-American in New York (AIA-NY)
The National Coalition of Pro-Democracy Advocates (NCPDA)
The Public Relations USA, Inc. (PRUSA)
Near East Policy Research, Inc, (NEPR)

1776 I St NW Suite 900
Phone: 202-756-4843
Fax: 202-756-1301
Washington, DC 20006-3757
www.ncpda.com

Location: UN Plaza, New York, NY
Contact: NCPDA
Phone: (845)480-1603 E-Mail: anr@ncpda.com
URL: http://www.ncpda.com"

MKO Lobbying

MKO Lobbying: "The Foreign Agents
The U.S. Department of Justice list four persons under the Foreign Agents Registration Act as registered foreign agents of the National Council of Resistance of Iran:

Filabi, Mahin
Jafarzadeh, Alireza
Mostowfi, Hedayatollah
Samsami, Soona"

MKO Lobbying: Who are the Mojahedin and what are they up to?

MKO Lobbying: "MKO Influence in U.S. Politics

Who are the Mojahedin and what are they up to?
Following the tragic events of September 11, 2001, the President of the United States issued Executive Order 13224. This order ostensibly blocked the assets of terrorist organizations and individuals associated with terrorism. The Mojahedin-e Khalq Organziation (aka MKO, MEK, National Council of Resistance of Iran, NCRI, People's Mojahedin of Iran, PMOI, et al.) is one such listed terrorist organization. Several years before, however, Congress passed the 1996 Antiterrorism Act which directed the State Department to draw up a list of foreign terrorist organizations. Such a list was produced by then Secretary Albright in 1997 and has been updated each two years or as required (1999 info). Additional information on the terrorist list is found in The "FTO" List and Congress. It is a common assertion of the MKO that they were listed during the Clinton administration as a "gesture" to Iran. As evidence of this, an article in the 09 October 1997 issue of the L.A. Times is cited which paraphrases an un-named Clinton administration official as stating that the listing was intended as a goodwill gesture. Whether or not there were persons in the Clinton Administration who held this view, it was made clear to me in my conversations with the Office of the Coordinator for Counterterrorism at the State Department that no such political considerations were made in drawing up the list. The fact is that the MKO were included in the very first list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations under the 1996 Antiterrorism Act and this determination was consistent with prior assessments by the State Department that the MKO was an organization involved in terrorism and this view was expressed even during the first Bush Administration. Indeed, in its decision on docket No. 01-1465 the United States Court of Appeals found:

.... Petitioner argues that there is not adequate
record support for the Secretary's determination that it is a
foreign terrorist organization under the statute. However, on
this element, even the unclassified record taken alone is quite
adequate to support the Secretary's determination. Indeed,
as to this element-that is, that the organization engages in
terrorist activities-the People's Mojahedin has effectively
admitted not only the adequacy of the unclassified record, but
the truth of the allegation."

Sam Dealey on National Council of Resistance of Iran & People's Mujahedin of Iran on National Review Online

Sam Dealey on National Council of Resistance of Iran & People's Mujahedin of Iran on National Review Online: "“A Very, Very Bad Bunch”
An Iranian group and its surprising American friends.

By Sam Dealey, a writer in Washington, D.C.
From the March 25, 2002, issue of National Review


n a Senate speech after the September 11 attacks, New Jersey Democrat Robert Torricelli suggested ways in which Congress might help the federal government fight terrorism. The first change he proposed was to abolish the five-year statute of limitations on prosecution of terrorists. "The nation has no statute of limitations for treason or for murder," he said. "Terrorism is every [bit] as insidious, and the statute of limitations should be lifted."
But even as he spoke, Torricelli continued his active support for the National Council of Resistance of Iran — an organization the State Department classifies as a front group for the People's Mujahedin of Iran, a terrorist group supported by Saddam Hussein. From its inception over 35 years ago, the Mujahedin has consistently engaged in attacks on American interests overseas. It has killed U.S. servicemen and civilians, and bombed U.S. business offices; it participated in the 1979 seizure of the American embassy in Tehran. Despite its inclusion on the State Department's select list of global terrorist organizations for the last six years, a spokeswoman for Torricelli claims the senator still fully supports the group.

Nor is Torricelli alone. Other members of Congress have also been strong advocates of the People's Mujahedin. Indeed, at least two congressmen — James Traficant, an Ohio Democrat, and William "Lacy" Clay, a Missouri Democrat — wrote to Secretary of State Colin Powell on the group's behalf after September 11.

How has a terrorist group managed to win the support of mainstream U.S. politicians? Simple: Its political representatives in the U.S. have worked hard to repackage the group as a legitimate dissident organization fighting for democracy in Iran — whitewashing its record and duping our leaders.

In its early years, the People's Mujahedin was devoted to reading Marx, Ho Chi Minh, and Che Guevara, and adapting their principles to a Shiite society. Trained in terror tactics by the PLO, the group was devoted to the violent overthrow of the shah, whom it perceived as a CIA puppet. But soon after Ayatollah Khomeini deposed the shah, the People's Mujahedin found itself on the outside of Iran's new power structure. The group had always been more Marxist than Muslim, and the clerical forces in the new regime turned against their former comrades.

In 1981, the Mujahedin's leaders fled to Paris and threw their support behind Iraq's Saddam Hussein in his war against Iran and the ayatollah. In 1986, they moved to Baghdad — where, with Saddam's assistance, they started another military wing known as the National Liberation Army. A 1994 State Department report indicates that the Mujahedin has trained and fought alongside Iraqi troops on a number of occasions, and that "Saddam Hussein has been one of [its] primary financiers, providing weapons and cash totaling an estimated hundreds of millions of dollars."

"They're a very, very bad bunch," says an official with the anti-Saddam Iraqi National Congress. "They take direct orders from Saddam, and they've hoodwinked people on Capitol Hill." A spokesman for Reza Pahlavi, the exiled son of the former shah who advocates Iranian democracy, offers a more diplomatic assessment. "We do consider that the democratic movement in Iran should be all inclusive," he says. "However, we cannot accept those groups that resort to violence and terrorism as a means of bringing democracy to Iran."

Despite its violent history, the People's Mujahedin would like to gain international legitimacy as Iran's "government in exile." Its immediate goal is to get its name off the State Department's list of terrorist organizations; to that end, it now purports to support a host of democratic ideals, from the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to freedom of religion and the free market. It has even abandoned its revolutionary flag — composed of a Koran verse, a sickle, and a Kalashnikov assault rifle — for that of the former shah, whom they worked to depose.

But there's little evidence of real change. The group's leaders are the same ones who led it during its anti-shah days, and the U.S. front group's website openly admits its affiliation with the Iraq-based Mujahedin military force.

The Mujahedin's Washington spokesman, Alireza Jafarzadeh, attempts — unconvincingly — to distance the group from its past. He says, for example, that the group assassinated Americans in the 1970s because it had been taken over by radicals; in fact, U.S. intelligence indicates that Massoud Rajavi, the group's leader, was in firm control at the time. Jafarzadeh also claims that the 1979 U.S.-embassy takeover was a Khomeini scheme to test his supporters, and that the Mujahedin had to either "endorse [it] entirely" or take a vague and "very calculated" decision to sign on; Jafarzadeh claims the group took the latter.

But in fact, on the day of the takeover, the Mujahedin issued a statement: "After the shah, it's America's turn." And when the hostages were released, the group boasted that it was "the first force who rose unequivocally to the support of the occupation of the American spy center."

Still, the group continues to find naïve supporters like Congressman Edolphus Towns, Democrat of New York. He says, "I think they could replace [Iran's mullahs], I really do." Experts on Iran scoff at this claim.

Congressman Gary Ackerman, also a New York Democrat, acknowledges that the Mujahedin's ties with Iraq are "disturbing," but he brushes them off as an acceptable tradeoff: "I think it would help if people understand that when you're trying to get rid of a terrorist regime, you use who you can." According to Iran Brief, an independent watchdog publication, Ackerman received more than $32,000 from People's Mujahedin sympathizers in his 1998 race.

But the Mujahedin's strongest congressional ally is Torricelli, a senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee; Iran Brief says he has received more than $140,000 in Mujahedin-related contributions. Over the past decade, Torricelli has written a slew of letters to administration officials and participated in several of the U.S. front group's events. In his most recent letter, dated August 27, 2001, he urged the State Department not to redesignate the People's Mujahedin as a terrorist group. On October 5, the group was again listed among State's 28 targeted organizations. "Our position remains the same," a Torricelli spokeswoman says, "and that is that the [group] is a political organization advocating democracy in Iran."

The spokeswoman claims that "more than 200" members of Congress support the Mujahedin; but this is seriously misleading. While a lengthy "Dear Colleague" letter decrying the Iranian regime — distributed in October 2000 by Ackerman and Florida Republican Ileana Ros-Lehtinen — did garner 228 signatures, mention of this group was buried at the bottom of the back of the page. Had it been more prominent in the letter, support could well have been considerably lower. Indiana Republican Dan Burton signed the letter, but his spokesman now says that the Mujahedin "are not exactly the kind of people we want to associate with. Most members will sign on to the generic anti-Iran stuff, but they stay away from these guys." Burton supported the Mujahedin until 1995, when evidence presented by the State Department convinced him to withdraw his backing.

Burton has it right: There are growing signs that young Iranians are displeased with their regime, and they certainly deserve our support. But anti-American terrorists, just as clearly, do not."