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6/12/07

Arizona's Iranian-Americans Condemn Lieberman's 'Warmongering Tactics', Ask Others to Join Them in Contacting Senators


Tucson, AZ
June 12, 2007 - Arizona Iranians for Peace strongly condemned comments made by Senator Joseph Lieberman (CT) when he spoke in favor of attacking Iran on CBS Face the Nation’s Sunday June 10th broadcast.

"I think we've got to be prepared to take aggressive military action against the Iranians to stop them from killing Americans in Iraq," Lieberman said. "And to me, that would include a strike over the border into Iran," where he claims Iranians are training insurgents.

"Senator Lieberman’s push for a U.S. attack on Iran is reckless and irresponsible," said Omid Mahdavi, a University of Arizona engineer. "In the face of the current Iraq fiasco, the fact that the Senator does not realize the disastrous consequences of a military strike on Iran indicates that he is failing us miserably as an elected official," added Mahdavi.

The group drew ties between claims made by public officials who had urged for war against Iraq and the current statements by the Senator. "Lieberman’s unfounded allegations regarding the degree to which the Iranians are a threat to the U.S. military is reminiscent of the rhetoric that led up to the Iraq war," said Simin Karimi, University of Arizona professor of linguistics. "We worry that he is attempting to spread fear in an effort to further his political and ideological interests," she added.

"Almost all experts covering the entire political spectrum agree that an unprovoked premeditated attack on Iran will have catastrophic consequences for the entire region, U.S. foreign policy, the U.S. economy, and the overstretched U.S. military," argued Mahdavi.

Arizona Iranians for Peace is a new grassroots group made up of Iranian-Americans from all walks of life who are voters in the state. While they do not condone many of the actions and rhetoric of the current Iranian government, they argue that the only way to bring stability to the region is through continued dialogue and the political marginalization of the extreme elements of the Islamic regime. They point out that a majority of Iranians want improved relations with the U.S.

"A U.S. military attack, as proposed by the Senator, will only strengthen the hands of extremists and result in more pain and suffering for both the Iranian and American people," said Ali Scotten, a PhD student in Anthropology at the University of Chicago.

"Lieberman’s antagonistic rhetoric could not have come at a worse time," he added.

Just weeks after the first direct U.S.-Iran talks in almost three decades, tensions remain high over Iran’s continued uranium enrichment program, which the U.S. alleges is part of an Iranian attempt to produce nuclear weapons. The recent detention in Iran of a number of American citizens of Iranian descent has added more heat to the controversy.

Mahdavi and the other members of Arizona Iranians for Peace urged both the Iranian-American community and others interested in a peaceful resolution to contact their representatives in Washington in order to express their disapproval of what they called "Lieberman’s warmongering tactics."

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Contact information for Senators can be found at www.senate.gov

If you would like more information about Arizona Iranians for Peace, or to schedule an interview, please call Ali Scotten at 773-573-8761 or email at scotten@uchicago.edu

... Payvand News - 6/12/07 ... --



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