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Why This Axis?

By Soraya Sepahpour-Ulrich


It is extraordinary to what lengths this Administration will go to halt Iran's progress.  Its paranoia at Iran becoming independent lends one to believe that Iran is a far greater adversary than common sense dictates. A developing nation striving to meet the energy demands of 70 million.  


Yet, Mr. Bush, having violated Article III of the Non-Proliferation Treaty in which he offered civilian nuclear aid to India in exchange for its vote against Iran, is now bribing the Russians into a lucrative nuclear energy accord in exchange for not vetoing the sanctions resolution against Iran.   


Given that the American's biggest fear is the Chinese expansion of their military, one must question what they will be tempted with?   Although they have been offered nuclear technology for building plants, China is a hungry cub that will demand far more. 


Sanctions, a war declaration on the Iranian people - for we are being denied our inalienable right, robbed of the chance for progress and advancement into the twenty-first century, shackles threateningly dangling in front of us; yet it is said that history never repeats itself, while we are being forced to relive it, the perpetrators stubbornly refusing to learn from it. 


These perpetrators also know that sanctions will prove to be ineffective - and a full scale war will ensue; A war that will leave its mark on several countries. 


India dug her own grave when she betrayed Iran.  The Bill that is required of India to sign in exchange for nuclear cooperation with the US would include not only isolation but support of sanctions on Iran.  This would include the gas pipeline from Iran to Pakistan and India.  Nothing could be more accurate than these words spoken by Homi J. Bhabha, father of India's nuclear energy, now betrayed by the ambitious politicians in India:


Knowledge is perhaps the most important possession of Man.  It is the accumulated knowledge of centuries which differentiates modern Man from his ancestor in the dawn of civilization.[1]


"All the basic discoveries upon which atomic energy is based were made before the second world war by scientists of many nations working in free and full collaboration.  The war put an end to this free exchange of knowledge, and most of the technical developments concerning atomic energy were made subsequently by a few nations, each working in isolation behind a wall of secrecy." (1955 - United Nations Presidential speech).


Yet, by condemning Iran and paving the way for sanctions, the first steps to war, a war in which the US has reiterated its options are on the table, including nuclear bunker busters, India would pay heavily for her decision.  The Union of Concerned Scientists report that the kind of bunker-buster the administration wants to use on Iran's nuclear facilities, would only penetrate a few feet into the ground, too shallow to contain the massive radiation fallout that could spread over 1000 miles.  If the US dropped a single 1.2 kiloton bomb on Isfahan, the kind it is planning on using, 3 million people will be killed within 2 weeks of the explosion around Isfahan, and 35 million people in Afghanistan, Pakistan and India will be at high risk of cancer due to radiation.


Should Russia fall in the same trap, it would have to forgo its chances of climbing the superpower platform once again.  Or perhaps be obliged to deal with retaliatory measures if the winds shift and they have to deal with the radiation.


Why the collective punishment?  Why focus on Iran when clearly there is more danger facing the United States from the Korean Peninsula? 

The main thrust of their argument for denying the Iranian nation of their lawful and legal right to a peaceful energy program, which the Americans promoted during the Shah's regime, is the 'intelligence' claiming Iran to be a state sponsor of terrorists.  Frankly, it is hard to give credit to 'intelligence' these days even with all the groundbreaking methods are being applied.

As the death toll piles up to 'defend our freedom' and 'establish democracy' in the Middle-East, we see our own democracy erode.  No doubt American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is unusually burdened fighting for our constitutional rights.  Hardly have we had a chance to recover from the last shocking revelation of the unlawful NSA eavesdropping spy scandal before it comes to light that for the past five years, the Bush Administration has been secretly tracking international money transactions as a part of its 'war on terror".


Yet in spite of its sophistication, its groundbreaking and lawbreaking efforts, this administration has failed to track down the money that feeds the Mojahedeen-e Khalg (MEK) in Iraq; and the transactions the terrorist group make here in the United States.  The Iraqi fiasco, the invasion of a sovereign nation based on 'poor' intelligence which demanded that we attack Iraq otherwise their weapons of mass destruction would destroy us,  has left me with no faith in the CIA, FBI, or any other 'intelligence', but I thought with a Czar, Negroponte at that, things would be shaken up.  One must surely wonder how our finest who can handpick 400-500 'terrorists' among untold hundreds of thousands and retain them for years in Gitmo, cannot trace money back and forth between 4000 terrorists (who are given 'protected persons status') under their very noses.  This lack of intelligence gathering is incomprehensible - dismal at best. 


Yet they maintain with certainty that Iran is a state sponsor of terrorists when they have had no ties with Iran for over 25 years.  Secretary Rumsfeld highlighted the poor intelligence gathering when he claimed: ""The absence of evidence does not necessarily mean evidence of absence."! 


The European parliamentarians, who follow this Administration so sheepishly, ought to be apprehensive about replacement candidates proposed for Iran, the Mojahedeen-e Khalg (MEK) - a group who will never be welcomed in Iran.  They have not objected to the leader of the MEK terrorist group, Maryam Rajavi, holding a press conference in their parliament house.  It is extraordinary that a terrorist leader should be allowed to roam around free, yet alone set foot in the parliament house of a society of democracies who throw stones at Iran.


Perhaps the answer lies within the walls of the US Congress where the Israeli Prime Minister made his case...)[2][3]

"Mr. Speaker, Mr. Vice President, allow me to turn to another dark and gathering storm casting its shadow over the world.

OLMERT: Iran, the world's leading sponsor of terror and a notorious violator of fundamental human rights, stands on the verge of acquiring nuclear weapons. With these weapons, the security of the entire world is put in jeopardy.

We deeply appreciate America's leadership on this issue and the strong bipartisan conviction that a nuclear-armed Iran is an intolerable threat to the peace and security of the world.


It cannot be permitted to materialize."


 This Congress has proven its conviction by initiating the Iran Freedom and Support Act. We applaud these efforts.


A nuclear Iran means a terrorist state could achieve the primary mission for which terrorists live and die: the mass destruction of innocent human life.

This challenge, which I believe is the test of our time, is one the West cannot afford to fail.

The radical Iranian regime has declared the United States its enemy. The president believes it is his religious duty and his destiny to lead his country in a violent conflict against the infidels. With pride, he denies the Jewish Holocaust and speaks brazenly, calling to wipe Israel off the map.

For us, this is an existential threat, a threat to which we cannot consent.

But it is not Israel's threat alone. It is a threat to all those committed to stability in the Middle East and the well-being of the world at large.

OLMERT: Mr. Speaker, Mr. Vice President, our moment is now. History will judge our generation by the actions we take now, by our willingness to stand up for peace and security and freedom, and by our courage to do what is right.

The international community will be measured not by its intentions but by its results.


The international community will be judged by its ability to convince nations and peoples to turn their backs on hatred and zealotry.

If we don't take Iran's bellicose rhetoric seriously now, we will be forced to take its nuclear aggression seriously later.

And so they obeyed...

To classify Iran as the world's foremost sponsors of terrorists, what is really meant is Iranian support for militant groups opposed to Israel.  And yet we are witnessing what Israel is capable of.  The reality of it is, Iran has not committed acts of terrorism whereas the West is openly supporting terrorist organizations and states, foremost Israel with 2-300 nuclear bombs.


Like any other nation who has signed onto the NPT, Iran deserves to continue with its peaceful nuclear program and not have to go to war to defend its inalienable right.  Let us hope that when it comes to the Russians and the Chinese, unlike the Indians, greed and folly are improbable bedfellows; not only for Iran's sake but for the sake of peace in the area and beyond. 



About the author: Soraya Sepahpour-Ulrich has studied in Iran, the UK, France, Australia and the US.  She obtained her Bachelors Degree in International Relations from the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, and she is currently pursuing a Masters Degree in Political Science at the University of Utah concentrating in Middle East Studies.  She has done extensive research on US foreign policy towards Iran and Iran's nuclear program.

[1] Presidential address given by Homi J. Bhabha, Secretary to the Government of India -Department of Atomic Energy.  United Nations, Department of Public Information, Press and Publications Division, Geneva.  8 August 1955 MPUAE/34/55

[2] Source: Washington Post - Israeli Prime Minister addressing United States Congress in May 2006


... Payvand News - 7/11/06 ... --

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