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The Drive behind Iran's Nuclear Program
In a startling 81-page report, Judith S. Yaphe and Charles D. Lutes of the Institute for National Strategic Studies (National Defense University) presented their findings entitled "Reassessing the Implications of a Nuclear-Armed Iran". When the summary of the report hit the newsstands on October 13, 2005, it seemed harmless enough. That was before the details of the report were revealed… -Soraya Sepahpour-Ulrich - 10/31/05

Dangerous bluster: The Iranian President's call for the destruction of Israel only benefits Israel
Ahmadinejad has been playing with fire these last few days. Twice last week, he has appeared to threaten Israel, attracting almost universal opprobrium. It is certainly dangerous, but how worried should we be? -Guardian - 10/31/05

Khamenei comes to PM’s defence
In remarks reported by state media, Ayatollah Khamenei said the “leaders of the west and Europe should be ashamed of being so much under the influence of Zionists”. But recognising the furore sparked by Mr Ahmadi-Nejad’s remarks, he also warned officials against “negligence vis-à-vis the enemy”. -Financial Times - 10/31/05

No Dialogue Among Civilizations!?
The recent quotation from the president of Iran has again put Iranians all over the world under pressure and will cause hardship to them. I have not read Mr. Ahmadinejad's speech; I just hope his words were not taken out of context which is routinely done by sensational journalists and the news media. -Mohammad Ala - 10/31/05

American Public Support for President Bush Dips All Time Low
A new public opinion poll indicates American public support for President Bush declining further, to reach an all time low. These results come at the end of what politicians from both parties acknowledge was a bad week for the White House. -VOA - 10/31/05

Muslim women launch international 'gender jihad'
Marching under the banner of a new "gender jihad", Islamic feminists from around the world this weekend launched what they hope will become a global movement to liberate Muslim women. -Guardian - 10/31/05

Iranian city tackles titillating mannequins
Police in northeastern Iran are launching a new morality drive by confiscating alluring mannequins from boutiques and clothes stalls in the bazaar, authorities in the city of Bojnourd said on Monday. -Reuters - 10/31/05

Seeds of leak scandal sown in Italian intelligence agency
Behind the CIA leak scandal lies a bizarre trail of forged documents, an embassy break-in and international deception that helped propel the United States to war in Iraq. -SF Gate - 10/31/05

Big Fire Temple Discovered in Kermanshah
Archaeologists discovered one of the biggest fire temples in Iran dating back to Parthian-Sassanid era, behind Shian Dam in western province of Kermanshah. -CHN - 10/31/05

Central Asia: Russia And U.S. Often At Odds In Region
The U.S.-led war to oust the Taliban regime in Afghanistan four years ago intensified Washington's engagement with Central Asia. But Russia, an erstwhile ally in the war on terror, has stepped up efforts to restore its influence in the region. -RFE - 10/31/05

Iran: "Slaves Opening", historical city dating back to Achaemenid era
Dahan-e Gholaman (Slaves Entrance) situated in the southeastern Sistan area, a city dating back to Achaemenid era, was first discovered by an Italian archaeologist, Umberto Scerrato in 1965. -IRNA - 10/31/05

Iranians, Founders of the World Empire
The exhibition of Forgotten Empire: the World of Ancient Persia held in the British Museum until 8 January 2006 has raised different reactions from experts, journalists, and public audience. -CHN - 10/31/05

With Hafez in Shiraz
One of the most internationally well known Persian poets is Hafez. In many Iranian homes his books, at least when I was growing up, was next to the Koran; and many would have it at their wedding table or the New Year’s Haft-Seen. -Syma Sayyah, Tehran - 10/31/05

UN: Iran's income per head at 2,300 dollars in 2004
Iran with a per capita gross national income (GNI) of dlrs 2,300 is among the countries with Medium/Low national incomes in 2004, the UN Information Office in Tehran reported on Saturday. -IRNA - 10/30/05

China-Russia Bloc Challenges U.S. In Central Asia
Is it possible that a little-known alliance called the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) could challenge the might of the world's only superpower -- if only in the vast landlocked spaces of Central Asia? -RFE - 10/30/05

Arab press torn on Ahmadinejad call
The Iranian president's call for Israel to be "wiped off the map" has received a sympathetic ear in some Arabic papers, which say it was a justified device to focus attention on the Palestinians' plight. -BBC - 10/30/05

Iran's Useful Reminder
Most Valuable Politician of the year? How about President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran, who has surged ahead for the 2005 MVP award in the few months he has been in office? He reminds a distracted world at crucial moments of the true nature of Iran's regime, of the abiding source of conflict in the Middle East and of the deeper meaning of global terrorism. -Washington Post - 10/30/05

Bush: Treaty Outlawing Torture Doesn't Apply Beyond US Soil
Echoing recent comments by White House officials, a U.S. government report submitted to the United Nations last Friday bears a message that the brutal treatment of people held in U.S. military custody abroad is and should be legal. -OneWorld.net - 10/30/05

Potomac Killing Casts Spotlight on Son's Romance
Mark K. Makki and Aramis Mizani were in their mid-teens when they met, both the offspring of Iranian immigrants who chose Montgomery County to escape the revolution that swept through their homeland in the late 1970s...Some deemed Seyed-Makki's staunch opposition to the relationship as absurd, oddly Shakespearian in this day and age, even in a close-knit immigrant community in which many parents still try to influence their children's love lives. -Washington Post - 10/30/05

Iran: Terrorists admit charges of bombing in Ahvaz
Iran's Ministry of Information said on Sunday that 30 people arrested in connection with terrorist bombing in Ahvaz confessed to bombing which rocked the city on June 13 and October 15. -IRNA - 10/30/05

Officials Say No Bird Flu in Iran
With no confirmed reports of an outbreak of bird flu in Iran, Iranian officials believe the country is free so far of a virus potentially fatal to humans. But they fear it may arrive soon, brought in by migratory birds flying south to spend the winter in Iran's temperate climate and swamps. -RFE - 10/30/05

Iran: Development plan calls for 385 billion dollars of investments
Director of Plan and Budget Organization's Macro Economic Office said in Tehran on Saturday that the Fourth Five-Year Development Plan (March 2005-2010) envisions over dlrs 385 billion of investments in the country. -IRNA - 10/30/05

Iran Says It Has No Intention To Attack Israel
Iran said today that it stood by its commitments under the UN Charter and would not use force against any country, nor threaten to do so. -RFE - 10/29/05

US Lawmakers Condemn Iranian President's Statement on Israel
On Friday, the House of Representatives voted unanimously 383-0 to condemn what a resolution called the outrageous and despicable threats of the Iranian president against Israel. -VOA - 10/29/05

Iran: "Mummified Dwarf" from the Sassanid era unearthed in Kerman
Kerman province Police Chief, Brigadier Hamid Gorizan, on October 29, 2005, exposed to reporters the corpse of a 25-cm dwarf unearthed in Shahdad area in the southeastern Kerman province. -IRNA - 10/29/05

Should Iran be expelled from the UN?
In response to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s recent comments on Israel, Congresswoman Ros-Lehtinen (R- FL) and Congressman Robert Wexler (D-FL) have circulated a letter on Capitol Hill addressed to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, urging the Bush Administration to support the Israeli initiative to expel Iran from the United Nations. -NIAC - 10/29/05

The Iran-Israel cold war
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Iran’s new president, has called for the extinction of Israel. But the Islamic Republic and the Jewish state were not always enemies, explains Trita Parsi. -Open Democracy - 10/29/05

Iran: Qods Day Brings Out Anti-Israeli Sentiments
Khomeini declared that the last Friday of the holy month of Ramadan -- 28 October this year -- would be marked as Qods Day (Jerusalem Day). Qods Day has been celebrated faithfully since then, not only in Iran but in countries with sizable Shi'a Muslim minorities, and it has become a ritualized outpouring of hatred directed at Israel. -RFE - 10/29/05

Azerbaijan: Political Shock Waves Continue
The mixture of uncertainty and rumor that imbues Azerbaijani domestic politics has always made it difficult, if not impossible to identify clearly the factions most observers believe exist within the upper echelons of the country's leadership, let alone to predict the outcome of that presumed struggle between them for influence. -RFE - 10/29/05

India Abandons Global Nuclear Disarmament
Seven years after blasting its way into the world's "nuclear club," India has executed a major shift in its policy stance by jettisoning its long-standing advocacy of global nuclear disarmament in favor of nuclear non-proliferation. -Antiwar - 10/29/05

Iran 'not planning Israel attack'
Iran says it has no intention to attack Israel despite a call by its president to have it "wiped off the map". -BBC - 10/29/05

Iran keen to use China's communication technology
Minister of Communication and Information Technology (CIT) Mohammad Soleymani on Saturday announced Iran's interest in transferring China's communication and telecommunication technology to Iran. -IRNA - 10/29/05

Cheney fan who helped launch push for Iraq war
Friday’s indictment of Lewis “Scooter” Libby removes one of Washington’s most influential backroom foreign policy operators. It also raises questions over whether the man known for his devotion to Dick Cheney, the vice-president, is taking the fall for his boss. -Financial Times - 10/29/05

Rethinking Failed Policies
We have been warned. Prepare for a broader war in the Middle East, as plans are being laid for the next U.S.-led regime change – in Syria. -Antiwar - 10/29/05

Hotel Industry Giants Gather in Tehran
Tehran will be the host of hotel investors and builders of the world in November/December 2005 to familiarize them with the conditions of the industry in Iran. - 10/29/05

Zoroastrians mass graveyard in Yazd registered as national monument
Head of Yazd Cultural Heritage and Tourism Department, Mohammad-Reza Seyed Hosseini said that the Zoroastrians mass graveyard in Yazd province was recently registered as a national monument. - 10/29/05

Iraqi Kurds want Iranian opposition leader tried
Iraqi Kurds want Masud Rajavi, leader of an Iranian opposition organization based in Iraq, to be arrested and tried, Radio Farda reported on 20 October. - 10/29/05

Iran does damage control
Iranian officials tried Friday to play down comments by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, whose call for the destruction of Israel has drawn harsh reaction from Western countries. -NYT - 10/29/05

Iranian Foreign ministry issues statement on US, Israeli threats against Iran
The Iranian Foreign Ministry issued a statement in Tehran on Saturday on the renewed threats hurled by US and Israeli officials against Iran, and asked the UN Security Council to act on such threats with appropriate measures. -IRNA - 10/29/05

Security Council condemns Iranian president's remarks on Israel
Members of the United Nations Security Council today condemned remarks against Israel made earlier this week by Iran's President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. - 10/29/05

Iran launches Sina-1, its first satellite
The satellite named Sina-1 (Z.S.4), separated from the Russian "Cosmos" rocket 35 minutes after blast-off. The satellite will be mainly used in telecommunication and taking photographs of the earth. - 10/28/05

Israel cranks up pressure on Iran
Israel says it will launch a "diplomatic offensive" following calls by the president of Iran for the Jewish state to be obliterated. -BBC - 10/28/05

U.S. Doesn't Back Call for Iran Expulsion
"Iran is a member of the United Nations," State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said. "What I think we would encourage instead is Iran to start behaving in a responsible manner as a member of the international community." -AP - 10/28/05

Quake jolts Bandar Abbas in southern Iran
An earthquake measuring 3.6 on the open-ended Richter scale jolted the city of Bandar Abbas in southern part of the country on Friday. - 10/28/05

India's Interests Collide Over Iran
India's growing desperation in wanting to resolve Iran's nuclear crisis diplomatically has more to do with its own foreign policy dilemmas than any desire to punish Iran. -PINR - 10/28/05

Iran leader defends Israel remark
While there is no sense that Iran is backing down, there are Iranians who are concerned that their country could become increasingly isolated under this new ultra-conservative government, reports the BBC Frances Harrison in Tehran. -BBC - 10/28/05

Cultures in a Box: Bringing the World's Cultures Together
An executive of a high-tech company in Silicon Valley and a native of Iran, Roya Ansari created the "Cultures in a Box" series to encourage children to understand and respect other cultures. -Epoch Times - 10/28/05

We will use force, Blair warns Iranians
Tony Blair delivered his strongest warning to Iran last night, saying Teheran would not be allowed to become a "threat to our world security". He hinted that the West might have to resort to force. The Prime Minister said western allies would meet in the next few days to decide how to react after President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad called for Israel to be "wiped off the map". -Telegraph, UK - 10/28/05

Iranian leader eyes key constituency: young people
The surprise announcement by Iran's hard-line judiciary that imprisoned students would be released grabbed headlines and boosted hopes among the country's restless youths. But a month later, not a single student has been freed. -CSM - 10/28/05

Who is this Michael Ledeen?
I had seen him on C-Span talking about Iran, China, and other countries and trying to implement democracy in these nations. But until I went to the American Enterprise Institute’s recent panel discussion on Federalism in Iran, I had never met the guy. -Fariba Amini - 10/28/05

Iran: Journalist Akbar Ganji reportedly tortured in hospital
Amnesty International is gravely concerned at reports that Iranian journalist Akbar Ganji was tortured and ill-treated by Iranian security officers in Milad hospital in Tehran. The organization calls on the Iranian authorities to launch an immediate investigation into these allegations, to grant Akbar Ganji immediate access to medical examination and any necessary care by an independent doctor of his choice. - 10/28/05

Thinking Outside The Box
Clearly, mistakes in political strategy in the Middle East cannot be undone; we are left with troubling circumstances that cannot be wished away. The only way out is by stepping outside the box in order to evaluate other alternatives with an open mind. -Kam Zarrabi - 10/28/05

Human Rights Watch Honors Iranian Journalist and Blogger Omid Memarian
On November 8, Human Rights Watch will honor Omid Memarian, an Iranian human rights activist who has creatively used the internet to press for a more open and democratic political regime in Iran. - 10/27/05

AEI panel lambasts Iran's ethnic policies
The American Enterprise Institute and its resident scholar, Michael Ledeen, hosted a five-paneled discussion titled “The Unknown Iran: Another Case for Federalism?” The idea behind the conference, Ledeen explained in his opening statement, had come about through his realization that “only 51 percent of the population of Iran is ‘Persian,’ as they call it.” -NIAC - 10/27/05

Tchogha Zanbil or Oil?
Ministry of Petroleum of Iran is carrying out a project on digging oil wells to determine the underground oil resources in the vicinity of Tchogha Zanbil. The oil wells are just 500 meters far from the historical site of Tchogha Zanbil. -CHN - 10/27/05

First Iranian satellite launched
Iran launched its first satellite into space from Plesetsk in northern Russia on Thursday, joining a select club of countries. -BBC - 10/27/05

Experts Urge US Caution in Civilian Nuclear Deal With India
Experts have told U.S. lawmakers they should carefully examine the proposed agreement with India on civilian nuclear cooperation, saying the United States needs to move cautiously in finalizing the accord. -VOA - 10/27/05

Iranian leader turns back time in diatribe on Israel
When Iran's new president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, told a group of students at an anti-Israel event that Israel must be "wiped off the map" and that attacks by Palestinians would destroy it, his tone was reminiscent of that of the early days of Iran's Islamic Revolution in 1979. -NYT - 10/27/05

Third Iran-Spain Seminar to be held in Tehran in mid-November
The main issues to be discussed at the seminar include 'Iran's clear Activities', 'Economy and Energy', 'Bilateral Political, Cultural and Economic Ties', 'Terrorism' and 'Disarmament'. -IRNA - 10/27/05

Iran leader's comments condemned
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's call for Israel to be "wiped off the map" has drawn widespread condemnation from Israel, Europe and North America. -BBC - 10/27/05

Iran: Islamic army death threats for 210 journalists
A self-styled Islamic Army in Iran has said it would like to elminate 210 journalists in the country. The list, recently circulated in Tehran, includes almost all the independent journalists who have not been recognised by the new government of hardline president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. -AKI - 10/27/05

Iran Ready to Restore its Famous Brick Dome
The restoration of the tallest brick dome of Iran will start in a near future by the restoration experts of the Cultural Heritage and Tourism Organization of the northern province of Golestan. -CHN - 10/27/05

Dialogue among Civilizations and Religions Conference to be held in Madrid
International Conference on Dialogue among Civilizations and Religions will be opened in Spain's capital, Madrid, on Friday morning with a message by former Iranian president Mohammad Khatami. -IRNA - 10/27/05

Iranian President's call for Israel to be "wiped off the map" triggers sharp world response and condemnation
Ahmadinejad made the comments yesterday at a conference in Tehran entitled "The World without Zionism." Following the remarks, Israel said it considers Iran "a clear and present danger" and Washington said the comments highlight U.S. concerns about Iran's nuclear activities. -RFE - 10/27/05

Iran faces up to its most lethal threat - drugs
One in 17 people are addicted, but groups such as Narcotics Anonymous are fighting back -Guardian - 10/27/05

Moved by "Under This Azure Heavens"
Being moved deeply by the article written by Mali Mostoufi under the heading Under This Azure Heavens... posted at Payvand recently, I wrote her this now revised version which I now like to share with others, as the subjects brought about in Ms. Mostoufi’s article can be considered among vital and long-lasting debates in the past 1400 years of Persian History. -Roya Monajem, Tehran - 10/27/05

Iran: Analysts Give Economic Planning And Development Mixed Marks
The recent granting of additional oversight responsibilities to the Expediency Council caused quite an uproar in Iranian politics, with much of the discussion focusing on the possibility that this move would undermine the independence of the executive and legislative branches. -RFE - 10/27/05

Shahla Sherkat, Feminist Among Iran's Fundamentalists
Shahla Sherkat is the editorial director of Zanan (Women) in Tehran. Sherkat founded the monthly magazine in 1991, after she was dismissed from her position as editorial director at the government-owned weekly magazine Zan-e Rouz (Today’s Woman). -IMMF - 10/26/05

Iran, Turkey Struggle To Influence Central Asia Region
The collapse of the Soviet Union and the emergence of independent states in Central Asia provided Turkey and Iran with an opportunity to explore new political and economic roles in the region. -RFE - 10/26/05

Numerous Travel Agencies In Iran, Few Tourists, What's the Problem?
Despite the high number of travel agencies active in Iran, the low number of incoming tourists is proof of their inefficiency. -CHN - 10/26/05

Hunting in Isfahan Canceled Due To Fear Of Bird Flu
The Department of Environment of Isfahan has forbidden bird hunting for fear of bird flu spread. -CHN - 10/26/05

Iran, India and the US: The Sleight of Hand
This is a tale about a vote, a strike, and a sleight of hand. For the past six months the United States and the European Union (EU) have led a full court press to haul Iran before the UN Security Council for violating the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NNPT) by supposedly concealing a nuclear weapons program. -CounterPunch - 10/26/05

Russia, China looking to form 'NATO of the East'?
The group, which started in 2001 with limited goals of promoting cooperation in former Soviet Central Asia, has evolved rapidly toward a regional security bloc and could soon induct new members such as India, Pakistan, and Iran. -CSM - 10/26/05

Beginning of the end for Iranian president's honeymoon period
Complaints about rising chicken prices during the holy month of Ramadan mark the first widespread disquiet about president Mahmoud Ahmadi-Nejad, just two months after he became Iran's president. -Financial Times - 10/26/05

Russia tries to break impasse with Iran
Russia said yesterday it would seek to resolve the impasse over Iran's controversial nuclear programme, in a sign of Moscow's increasing importance in international attempts to broker a deal with Iran. -Financial Times - 10/26/05

Iran nuclear capability can spark arms race
If Iran develops nuclear weapons it could spark a regional arms race because Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Egypt would consider getting atomic bombs, a leading think tank said on Tuesday. -AFP - 10/26/05

The evolution of Iran's nuclear programme
The passage of a resolution by the International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAEA) on 24 September, paving the way for the possible referral of Iran to the UN Security Council (MEI 759) due to its “many failures and breaches of obligations” under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), was the latest twist in the dispute over the nature and aims of Tehran’s nuclear programme. -Jubin Goodarzi, MEI - 10/26/05

Iranian Dissidents Square Off in DC
A news conference conducted by self-described Iranian dissidents descended into chaos on Monday as audience members and two journalists accused the speakers of spreading disinformation and being agents of Iranian intelligence. -CNSNews - 10/26/05

Syria, Iran and the Power Plays over Iraq
In assessing the current phase of events in the Middle East, it is essential to link events in Syria with events in Iran. These, in turn, must be linked to the state of the war in Iraq and conditions in the Arabian Peninsula. -IsraPundit, Israel - 10/26/05

Louvre to Ebmrace Ancient Persia
Louvre Museum will be hosting exhibitions of Safavid and Achaemenid eras of ancient Persia in 2007, 2008. -CHN - 10/26/05

Women Journalists from Bangladesh, Iran and Germany Honored for Courage
The non-profit International Women's Media Foundation is honoring female journalists from Bangladesh, Germany and Iran who have put their lives at risk to report on war, corruption, politics and human rights. -VOA - 10/26/05

Iran opposition group seeks US legitimacy
Even by the standards of Washington politics it was an unusual spectacle - the veiled leader of a Middle East group banned in the US as a terrorist organisation delivering a speech by live video-link to applauding members of Congress inside the Capitol itself. -Financial Times - 10/26/05

The next mayor of Bainbridge -- Nezam Tooloee?
City Councilman Nezam Tooloee is aiming for the mayor’s seat with a platform focusing on spending, growth and island interests. -Bainbridge Island Review - 10/26/05

Central Asia: Oil, Diplomacy, And Military Might
Central Asia regained global strategic importance in 1991 when the vacuum left by the collapse of the Soviet empire allowed energy companies around the world to compete for the region's vast oil and gas resources. -RFE - 10/26/05

The Iranian economy, a new start or a continuation?
The election of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as President of the Islamic Republic of Iran in June has led to numerous concerns within the private sector in Iran, as well as within the economic sectors working, or planning to work, with Iran. -Thierry COVILLE in Paris - 10/26/05

Wife confirms that Iranian journalist Akbar Ganji is confined to special section of Evin prison
Reporters Without Borders today reiterated its outrage at the treatment of journalist Akbar Ganji after his wife, Massoumeh Shaffii, and one of his lawyers visited him on 17 October and confirmed that he is still physically and psychologically debilitated after his hunger strike and that he has been put in a "special" wing of Tehran's Evin prison where inmates are often tortured. - 10/25/05

Iran Tightens Web Filters
Civil liberties advocates voiced concern Monday over Iran’s plans to tighten its grip on Internet use with new technology that allegedly can get around counter-censorship tools. -Red Herring - 10/25/05

US computer game touches Iran's atomic nerve
U.S. special forces dart through Iran's underground nuclear facilities, gunning down any hapless Iranians standing between them and centrifuges that must be blown to bits. Much to Tehran's relief, this crack team exists only in a new U.S. computer game. -Reuters - 10/25/05

Indo-Iran LNG import deal in peril
India's $22-billion deal to import 5 million tonnes of liquefied natural gas from Iran is in trouble after General Electric of the United States refused the supply of crucial equipment needed to make LNG to Tehran. -Rediff, India - 10/25/05

Ex-MKO member demand Rajavi to be tried with Saddam
Through both his personal testimony and a ten minute video displayed during the press conference at the National Press Club earlier on Monday, Moni sought to highlight the MKO’s cooperation with Saddam Hussein and demanded that Massoud Rajavi, the leader of the MKO and his associates be tried for “their human rights violations.” -NIAC - 10/25/05

India Calls for Probe of Pakistani Nuclear Scientist
India is calling on the international community not to gloss over a Pakistani scientist's alleged role in encouraging Iran's controversial nuclear program. A top official has strongly defended India's own record on nuclear non-proliferation. -VOA - 10/25/05

Death Toll of US Troops in Iraq Approaches 2,000
The number of American soldiers killed in Iraq was climbing inexorably towards 2,000 yesterday, with the announcement of the 1,996th casualty since the invasion in 2003. US forces suffered 15,220 wounded over the same period. -Independent - 10/25/05

Iranian police seize two tons of narcotics in Khorasan province
Police commander in Khorasan province said in Mashhad on Monday that over two tons of drugs have been seized and two drug-trafficking gangs were also busted this week. -IRNA - 10/25/05

Iranian filmmaker Fereydun Goleh laid to rest
Iranian filmmaker Fereydun Goleh died of heart failure at the age of 63 on Saturday in the northern city of Salmanshahr, Mazandaran Province. -Mehr - 10/25/05

Azerbaijan: Government In Control As Opposition Falls Behind
As more Azerbaijani government officials are reported as being dismissed from office, political observers agree that recent political events in Baku and beyond have dealt a severe blow to the opposition. -RFE - 10/25/05

Iran FM: Caspian Sea security should be provided by littoral states
"The presence of foreign forces is cause of instability in the region." Speaking at a press conference in Moscow, he added that the Americans are interested in gaining a foothold in many parts of the world and think of these regions as their own backyard. -IRNA - 10/25/05

Iran's nuclear dossier to be merely assessed by IAEA
The foreign ministers of Iran and Russia, addressing a joint press conference after their two-hour meeting in Moscow Monday, underlined that Iran's nuclear issue can merely be examined within the framework of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) regulations. -IRNA - 10/25/05

Iran: Tehran Bans Movies That Promotes Nihilism And Feminism
Iran has banned foreign films promoting secularism, feminism, unethical behavior, drug abuse, or violence. The ban was approved by the Supreme Cultural Revolutionary Council headed by Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad. -RFE - 10/25/05

Two Iranians among the eight Reporters Without Borders nominees for the blog contest
From the more than 130 blogs proposed by Internet users, Reporters Without Borders and Deutsche Welle picked the shortlist of eight because of a particular passion they have displayed in their defence of free expression. - 10/25/05

Who Was Behind the Prolongment of the Iran/Iraq War? Whose Justice Does Saddam's Trial Serve?
In a quiet neighborhood of the Tajrish district of Tehran, on the foothills of the Alborz Mountains, a green thirty-thousand-square-feet sanatorium hosts hundreds of veterans of the Iran-Iraq war who still suffer from their war wounds. -Behrooz Ghamari, CounterPunch - 10/24/05

Iranian FM confers with Russian counterpart
Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki and his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, in Moscow on Monday reiterated national resolve from both sides for broader cooperation. -IRNA - 10/24/05

EU sources: Russia can help in breaking current EU-Iran impasse
Russia is well poised to play a crucial mediator's role in breaking the current deadlock in nuclear negotiations between the European Union and the Islamic Republic of Iran, according to EU sources in Brussels. -IRNA - 10/24/05

Journalists and the First Amendment: Facing their Demise
Since the Iraqi invasion, the US army has taken aim at journalists – foreign ones. The number of casualties has prompted one European country to issue an international arrest warrant against three American soldiers who fired at the Palestine hotel, the base for almost all the foreign media crews in Baghdad. -Soraya Sepahpour-Ulrich - 10/24/05

Interview with Juan Cole
As it happens, I'm but a pit stop on the way to an afternoon TV interview at the PBS program Great Decisions on one of his specialties, Iran. -History News Network - 10/24/05

MKO dissidents demand that Mas'oud Rajavi also be put on trial
On the eve of the trial of the toppled Iraqi president Saddam Hussein, some former members of the Mojahedeen Khalq Organsation (MKO) demanded that the leader of the outlawed Organisation and some of his close associates be also tried for “crimes against both the Iraqi and Iranian peoples”. -IPS - 10/24/05

US Diplomat Points to Neocon Ideology Behind Actions in Iraq
A veteran US diplomat who served as a government adviser in Iraq says US policy in the country at the initial stage of the occupation was driven by neoconservative ideology rather than careful preparation and clear understanding of issues. -AFP - 10/24/05

Quake hits Shahroud in northeastern Iran
An earthquake measuring 3.6 on the Richter scale hit the city of Shahroud in the northeastern province of Semnan Sunday morning. -IRNA - 10/24/05

'The System Worked'
Now we know for sure what we knew all along. Thanks to a colorful outburst by Lawrence Wilkerson, former secretary of state Colin Powell's chief of staff, the full dimensions of how "dysfunctional" (his word) the national security apparatus was during President Bush's first term are clearer than ever. -Washington Post - 10/24/05

Quake jolts Bandar Dayyer in southern Iran
A mild earthquake measuring 3.9 on the Richter scale hit the city of Bandar Dayyer in the southern province of Bushehr Monday morning. -IRNA - 10/24/05

Saddam is Determined That the West Will Join Him in the Dock
SADDAM Hussein’s trial could prove to be a turning point for Iraq and the Middle East. Regardless of the competence of the court trying him, and of whether justice will indeed be seen to be done, Arabs have never been treated to the spectacle of seeing one of their mighty rulers brought to justice. -Sunday Herald, Scotland - 10/24/05

Iran: 2500-year-old aqueduct in Kish island
The aqueducts situated in Kish, being incomparable to those across the nation, show that in old days advanced methods were used by our predecessors in the area for digging them. - 10/24/05

From Iranian true believer to dissident
Akbar Ganji has come to represent the democratic movement in Iran, not only because of his enormous courage and his original thinking, but because he has revealed the "true face of the system in the Islamic Republic of Iran." -Azar Nafisi, SF Gate - 10/24/05

Grants to promote democracy in Iran delayed
Six months after announcing a plan to give $3 million to promote democracy in Iran, the State Department has yet to spend the money. The delay comes as the United States is urging Iran to stop interfering in Iraq and to return to nuclear talks with three European nations. -USA Today - 10/24/05

63% of Iran's hand-woven carpets exported to Germany and US
In the first half of the current year, the Iranian hand-woven carpets worth 197 million dollars have been exported abroad from which 63% has been sent to Germany and the United States. - 10/24/05

Iran may consider holding talks with US on equal footing: Interior Minister
Iran may consider holding talks with the United States if talks are held on an equal footing and based on mutual respect, Interior Minister Mostafa Pour-Mohammadi said in Shiraz on Monday. -IRNA - 10/24/05

Faster, Please!
Ladies and Gentlemen of the internet grand jury, his motive is clear. Michael Ledeen has been intent on turning the Middle East into a "cauldron" of revolution for years. From the pages of the National Review, he consistently advocates the neocon's Israel-First democratist ideology, advocating "creative destruction" and crying "Faster, please" for more war. -Antiwar.com - 10/22/05

A filmic meditation on women's role in Islam
Now another Gladstone artist is making a film, a New York-based Iranian, Shirin Neshat. Last week I saw "Zarin," a 20-minute segment. The film is for theatrical release. It will cause squalls. But Neshat, a slight, soft-spoken woman, a veteran not just of international exhibitions and of biennales but of the withering crossfire of Iranian exile politics, is used to that. -Financial Times - 10/22/05

Freiburg marks 5th anniversary of sister city deal with Isfahan
The southwest German city of Freiburg is holding special festivities to mark the 5th anniversary of the signing of a sister city accord with Isfahan. -IRNA - 10/22/05

Azerbaijan: Waiting For President's, Opposition's Next Moves After Arrests
Azerbaijan's law-enforcement agencies have arrested three former cabinet ministers on suspicion of plotting against the government with exiled opposition leader Rasul Quliyev. Yesterday, another cabinet minister and a high-ranking official of the presidential administration were sacked for reasons that remain unclear. -RFE - 10/22/05

Analyst: UK using Iran accusations as 'smokescreen for its plight in Iraq'
Analyst for the US-based Jamestown Foundation Mahan Abedin believes that the UK is using its allegations of Iranian involvement in southern Iraq as a "smokescreen" for its plight in Basra. -IRNA - 10/22/05

India, US Reaffirm Civilian Nuclear Deal
India and the United States say both countries are fully committed to implementing a landmark civilian nuclear energy cooperation deal, signed earlier in the year. The U.S. Undersecretary of State Nicholas Burns is on a visit to India. -VOA - 10/22/05

Iran: Varsity students, teachers form human chain in front of Bushehr power plant
More than 2,000 university students and teachers on Saturday formed a human chain in front of Bushehr power plant to display support for national nuclear program for civilian utility. -IRNA - 10/22/05

America, Iran, and India: New turns in Indian diplomacy
India has voted in favor of a resolution in the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) criticizing Iran and threatening to refer it to the UN Security Council (UNSC) later. The resolution is considerably weaker than what Western countries had initially sought. -India Currents - 10/22/05

Indonesians Challenge US Envoy in Lively Exchange
U.S. goodwill envoy Karen Hughes got a earful from a group of mostly female Indonesian Muslim students on Friday, who expressed anger at the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq and attacked Washington's foreign policies. -Reuters - 10/22/05

Syria Rejects UN Report on Hariri Assassination
Syria's information minister is rejecting the UN report on the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri. The report implicates several senior Syrian officials, including the president's brother-in-law. Meanwhile, the Lebanese president is facing increased pressure to resign. -VOA - 10/22/05

Britain fears Tehran block on trade
The Foreign Office was yesterday investigating whether the Iranian government has slapped a trade embargo on Britain as punishment for the UK's stance over Iran's nuclear programme. -Guardian - 10/22/05

Iran: Earthquake jolts Ardal town in Chahar Mahal Province
An earthquake measuring 5 degrees on Richter scale jolted Myankoh district of Ardal town in Chahar Mahal and Bakhtiari province at 03:10 hours local time (23:50 GMT Thursday) early morning on Friday. -IRNA - 10/22/05

Rumsfeld Visit to Mongolia Underscores Growing Military Cooperation
U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld visited Mongolia Saturday to thank the country for its participation in the military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, and to promote the growing U.S.-Mongolian military relationship. -VOA - 10/22/05

GNCCI says Ghana will import Iran Khodro cars
President of Ghana National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GNCCI) said the West African country would import the cars of Iran Khodro, reported the national automaker here Friday. -Mehr - 10/22/05

Alien life high above Tehran
As soon as the doors of the gondola closed, the young guy seated next to us removed his multicoloured woollen hat and designer sunglasses, fingered his sideburns and goatee, took out a cigarette and lit up. Since both my sister and I are non-smokers and were looking forward to some fresh mountain air, I asked him to put it out. -Financial Times - 10/22/05

Stifling Neo-Crazy Media Sycophants
In a Note Verbale of August 1, 2005, Iran informed all IAEA members that Iran had decided to resume uranium-conversion activities – voluntarily suspended almost two years before – at the Uranium Conversion Facility at Esfahan. -Antiwar.com - 10/22/05

Architects say wind towers can be applied in modern architecture in Iran
An architect couple is working on a project on the use of wind towers in contemporary architecture in Iran. Paris-based architects Herve Richard from France and his Iranian wife Shiva Tolouie went to Yazd, central Iran, to study wind towers for five years. -IRNA - 10/22/05

Washington, DC-Area Iranian-American Teen Launches Innovative Marketing and Advertising Firm
Washington, DC metro area teen launches third company, this time spearheading a full-service marketing, PR and advertising firm dealing primarily with music-related companies and services. - 10/21/05

Iran: Probing The Probers
An international corruption-monitoring organization has reported that businesspeople and analysts both in and outside Iran see the country as profusely corrupt. Inside Iran, meanwhile, there is criticism of the failure to eliminate corruption, even though a government agency was created for this very function four years ago. - 10/21/05

Iran: Death Sentences of juvenile offenders and stoning sentences continue to be passed
Amnesty International is outraged that Iran is continuing to pass death sentences on minors and juvenile offenders (those convicted of crimes committed before the age of 18), and that it is still passing sentences of stoning to death, despite having announced a moratorium on such executions. - 10/21/05

Iran's Conservatives And Reformers Speak Of Coalitions
The Coordinating Council of Revolutionary Forces, an umbrella organization of 15 conservative groups, is to be forged into a political party to support President Mahmud Ahmadinejad, "Sharq" reported on 6 October, adding that the party leader is Ali Larijani, currently Iran's ranking nuclear diplomat. - 10/21/05

Cyrus' Ancestors Helped Build Achaemenid Empire
Cyrus benefited his grandfather's ruling policies in building one of Persia's greatest empires, the Achaemenids. Teispes (Chishpish), Cyrus' grandfather, was the king of a small realm but his policies provided the bed for the establishment of the vast Achaemenid Empire of Persia. - 10/21/05

Supreme Leader: Iran will not give in to US bullying on nuclear issue
Supreme Leader Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei Friday reiterated Iran's inalienable right to have access to peaceful nuclear energy and said Iranian people will under no circumstances surrender to US bullying and arrogance. - 10/21/05

Back to the future
Heightening tensions over Iraq and Tehran's nuclear ambitions are reminiscent of the bad old days of Anglo-Iranian relations, writes Ian Black -Guardian - 10/21/05

High-level team to visit Iran to discuss pipeline project next week
A high-level delegation led by Petroleum Secretary SC Tripathi will visit Tehran next week to review the proposed multi-billion-dollar Iran-India natural gas pipeline. -Hindustan Times - 10/21/05

India and US work on nuclear deal
A top US official has held talks in India to push forward a landmark nuclear deal between the two countries. -BBC - 10/21/05

Interval of Uncertainty
It is hardly impossible, but it won't be easy. Iraqis who don't want their country to be either torn apart by continuing insurgent violence or occupied permanently by U.S. military forces have a few weeks to get their act together. -Antiwar.com - 10/21/05

Attack Syria? Invade Iran? By What Constitution?
Testifying before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on October 19, Condoleezza Rice was asked whether the Bush administration was planning military action against Syria. She answered, “I don’t think the President ever takes any of his options off the table concerning anything to do with military force.” -Common Dreams - 10/21/05

US can call foreign groups terrorists, court says
The ruling by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals was made in a case involving people who raised money in California for Mujahedin-e Khalq, or MEK, an Iranian opposition group designated as a terrorist organization by the U.S. government since 1997. -Reuters - 10/21/05

World Cup dreams of British-born Iranian Sharu Naraji shattered
British-born Iranian youth international winger Sharu Naraji believes that his dreams of being able to participate in next year's World Cup in Germany have been shattered by an injury. - 10/21/05

Condoleezza Rice Doesn't Rule Out Armed Action Against Iran, Syria
But in testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Rice stressed that Washington is now pursuing what she called a "diplomatic course" in an effort to pacify Iraq. - 10/21/05

Iran: South Korea is first victim of Tehran's economic revenge
Tehran and Seoul have begun an economic war. The Iranian commerce minister considers the reports of an embargo on Korean products unfounded, while in Seoul, the capital of South Korea, there is confirmation that Iran blocked all imports from the Asian country soon after the last meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) -AKI - 10/21/05

Middle East Bracing for Possible Arrival of Bird Flu
Middle Eastern and North African countries are restricting bird imports and taking other measures to prevent the spread of bird flu. But migration patterns indicate that it is likely the virus will spread to the region. - 10/21/05

7-day Visa Facilitates Tourists Entry to Iran
Iran has provided some facilities to issue a 7-day visa just in an hour for the inbound tourists arriving in Imam Khomeini and Mehrabad in Tehran, Shiraz, Mashhad, Isfahan, and Tabriz' international airports. - 10/21/05

Rice Outlines Iraq 'Victory Strategy' - direct contacts with Iran being considered
Ms. Rice said despite the absence of diplomatic relations with Iran, the United States has indirect channels of communication with the Tehran government. She also disclosed that the administration is considering having direct contacts, limited to the subject of Iraq, between the U.S. ambassador to Iraq Zalmay Khalilzad and his Iranian ambassadorial counterpart in Baghdad. - 10/20/05

Iranian official: I am optimistic about resumption of nuclear negotiations with EU3
Secretary of Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) Ali Larijani said in Pretoria on Wednesday, "Islamic Republic of Iran is not pessimistic about resumption of nuclear negotiations with the EU3, but it does not permit the others to draw the outlines of talks and to impose it against Iran. - 10/20/05

Telephone hotline helps children in Bam
It is around midday on a Wednesday morning in the oasis town of Bam, in south-east Iran. Counsellor Hassan Barzang from Iran’s State Welfare Organization sits patiently behind his desk in a small prefabricated building, or connex. This is the office for Bam’s first telephone hotline service. - 10/20/05

Iran 'crackdown on foreign films'
Iran's authorities have banned imported films promoting secularism, feminism, unethical behaviour, drug abuse, violence or alcoholism, reports say. -BBC - 10/20/05

North Korea, Eritrea and Turkmenistan are the world’s “black holes” for news
North Korea once again comes bottom of the Reporters Without Borders fourth annual World Press Freedom Index, released today. It is closely followed in the 167-country list by Eritrea (166th) and Turkmenistan (165th), which are other “black holes” for news where the privately-owned media is not allowed and freedom of expression does not exist. Iran was ranked 164th. - 10/20/05

Powell Aide Blasts Rice, Cheney- Rumsfeld 'Cabal'
As top officials in the White House and Vice President Dick Cheney’s office await possible criminal indictments for their efforts to discredit a whistleblower, a top aide to former Secretary of State Colin Powell, Wednesday, accused a ''cabal'' led by Cheney and Pentagon chief Donald Rumsfeld of hijacking U.S. foreign policy by circumventing or ignoring formal decision-making channels. -IPS - 10/20/05

Iran is 21st in latest FIFA world rankings
Iran stands at 21st position in latest world rankings of the soccer's governing body. - 10/20/05

Wi-fi cities spark hotspot debate
The brains behind the network in Oregon is Fred Ziari, an Iranian immigrant who is CEO of EZ Wireless, a Portland-based hi-tech firm that contracted with local authorities to provide the wireless service. -BBC - 10/20/05

MTN 'in Iran mobile network deal'
South Africa's MTN phone company says it is to take a 49% stake in the new Irancell mobile network in Iran. -BBC - 10/20/05

Iran exports 67 tons of saffron since March
Deputy head of Khorasan Province Export Organization said here Wednesday that over 67 tons of saffron has been exported from the province in the first half of the current Iranian year (started March 21). - 10/20/05

Female firefighters find they can take the heat in Iran
The rewards are great - and the disappointments as powerful as any felt by firefighters around the world. But at Station No. 9 in Karaj, west of Tehran, a small unit prides itself on being like few others: the only squad of women firefighters in the Middle East. -CSM - 10/20/05

'I'm Not Guilty'
It feels odd to see a person accused of mass murder in the flesh. More peculiar if you feel that person has affected your life. In 1982, my family left Iran to escape the chaos of the war with Iraq. I was only 10 at the time, but the Iranian military, unable to match Hussein’s well-stocked arsenal, was sending younger and younger recruits to the front. -Babak Dehghanpisheh, Newsweek - 10/20/05

Iran Airs Its Grievances Against Saddam Hussein
The current trial does not address Hussein's alleged crimes against Iran, most of which relate to the 1980-88 war between the two countries. Iranian officials made clear in September that they would submit a separate indictment, and their concern was apparent when Hussein was arraigned in July 2004. - 10/20/05

Iran seeking new ways to censor the Internet and track dissidents
Reporters Without Borders today accused the Iranian government of seeking to increase its control of the Internet in recent measures that have included contracting an Iranian company, Delta Global, to set up a new online censorship system. - 10/20/05

Iran: Over 20 suspects arrested in connection with Ahvaz bomb blasts
Minister of Information Gholam-Hossein Mohseni Ejei said on Tuesday that the number of those arrested in connection with terrorist bombing in Ahvaz on October 15 exceeded 20. - 10/19/05

House Hearing: Iran and Hezbollah Greater Thread Than Al-Qaeda
Ilan Berman, Vice President of the American Foreign Policy Council and author of Rising Tehran, told a Congressional committee yesterday that Iran and Hezbollah posed a greater threat to the US than Al-Qaeda. -NIAC - 10/19/05

Love of language begins at home
Persian-English Magnetic Word Play was designed for teenagers, college students and adults. - 10/19/05

Mordechai Vanunu: “Having the atomic bomb is what has allowed Israel to fearlessly carry out its policy of apartheid”
In 1986, Mordechai Vanunu, an engineer at the Dimona nuclear centre, revealed to the Sunday Times the existence of the secret Israeli nuclear program. -Voltaire Network, France - 10/19/05

Gorbachev: Dictated terms not the answer to Iran's nuclear program
Former Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev has warned the US about its approach of trying to pressure Iran not to develop nuclear weapons. - 10/19/05

New Iranian bakery's distinctly flavored goodies are a rare treat
The shirini, or sweets, from Minoo Bakery aren't the sort of things you toss in a lunch box or a backpack. Nor are they for dunking in milk or giant cups of coffee and consumed indiscriminately. -Seattle Post Intelligencer - 10/19/05

Hussein's Lawyers Aim to Focus Trial On U.S. Occupation
When Saddam Hussein stands trial here today with his life on the line, his lawyers intend to pursue a bold strategy: shift the focus from Mr. Hussein to U.S. actions in Iraq. -Farnaz Fassihi, WSJ - 10/19/05

US, India Close to Nuclear Cooperation Deal
The United States and India are close to agreement on a plan that would pave the way for a nuclear energy cooperation deal. The accord could be finalized when President Bush visits New Delhi early next year. - 10/19/05

Iran investigating news source on alleged trade ban on South Korea
Iran is reviewing the source and reason behind a published news item which said the country was imposing a limitation on the importation of goods from South Korea, Iranian Ambassador to South Korea Jahanbakhsh Mozaffari said in Seoul on Wednesday. - 10/19/05

Are British Troops at Breaking Point in Iraq?
Fears that British forces in Iraq are reaching "breaking point" grew last night as the first hard evidence of a crisis in morale began to emerge. -Independent - 10/19/05

MKO remains on EU terrorist list
The Iranian Mujahedin-e-Khalq Organization (MKO), which was put on the EU's terrorist list in 2002, remains on the new blacklist. - 10/19/05

Iran's National Heritage Preservation Law Revised
The law enacted for preservation and maintenance of national heritage of Iran dates back to 1930 and no further studies were carried out since for its revision until recently when it was reviewed by the Cultural Heritage and Tourism Organization of Iran. - 10/19/05

Trial Of Saddam Hussein, Co-Defendants Set To Begin
Saddam Hussein and seven associates go to court on 19 October in a trial that is expected to be the first of many charging the former Iraqi leader with crimes against humanity and could have great significance for hundreds of thousands of victims of the former Ba'athist regime. - 10/19/05

Iran: Editor of Kurdish-language weekly sentenced to 18 months in prison
Reporters Without Borders today condemned the 18-month prison sentence that was passed on Mohammad Sedigh Kabovand, the editor of Payam-e mardom-e Kurdestan, a weekly published in Kurdish and Farsi, for "upsetting public opinion and spreading separatist ideas." - 10/19/05

Iran: World Renowned Archaeologists Come to Burnt City
The ninth season of archaeological excavations and studies in the historical site of Burnt City in Sistan va Baluchistan will commence with participation of figures from all around the world, some of whom will be seeing the site for the first time ever. - 10/19/05

Caspian Sea: the lawless territory waiting for troubles
The Caspian Sea, which is a lake, is not subject to any law. The countries surrounding it have not reached an agreement on the legal regime of the Caspian Sea. Since the collapse of the USSR in 1991 the littoral states (Iran, Russian Federation, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan) have had hundreds of meeting in various level and they have not succeeded to reach an agreement how to administer the Caspian Sea issues. -Bahman Aghai Diba - 10/18/05

Persepolis fans see red, jeer embattled coach Ali Parvin
The king of football in Iran and all-time favorite of the red-shirted Persepolis fans, Ali Parvin, was for the first time seen off with boos and jeers from angry rooters in Tehran on Sunday. - 10/18/05

Hope for a better life for Afghan refugees in Iran
Afghan refugees in Iran face many challenges. For young people, these challenges are especially grave because, as refugees, they are often excluded from education, have little access to social and medical services and have no legal right to work. Those that do manage to find work face harsh and unstable conditions and earn very low wages. - 10/18/05

Iran's Parliament commission gives nod to suspension of NPT Additional Protocol
The Majlis' National Security and Foreign Policy Commission here Sunday approved the general outlines of a single-urgency bill providing for the suspension of the government's voluntary implementation of the Additional Protocol to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). - 10/18/05

UK unwilling to publish claimed evidence against Iran
Prime Minister Tony Blair is unwilling to publish claimed evidence alleging Iranian involvement with the recent killing of British soldiers in Iraq, according to his official spokesman. - 10/18/05

Arab League Meets in Baghdad To Foster Iraqi Reconciliation
A much-anticipated Arab League-sponsored conference to promote national reconciliation in Iraq opened in Baghdad Monday. The conference is chiefly aimed at easing the growing sectarian rift between Iraq's Shi'ite and Sunni Muslims. - 10/18/05

First-Ever Player Strike Hits Iran's Top Soccer Club
Players at Iran's top soccer team have gone on strike over unpaid wages, the first time that's ever happened in the Islamic republic. - 10/18/05

Quake hits southern Iranian city of Lar
An earthquake measuring 3.7 on the Richter scale hit the city of Lar in the southern province of Fars Tuesday morning. - 10/18/05

Even the Sunnis turned out
Iraqis streamed to the polls on an unusually peaceful Saturday, and preliminary results indicate that the country's new charter is likely to be approved, clearing the way for the formation of a permanent government. -CSM - 10/18/05

Sensational revelations
The young girl is beautiful, and the Shah, receiving Iranian students during a visit to Paris, cannot but notice her. The man who heads the office for Iranian students abroad pushes the girl forward, and sings her praises to pin the Shah down in front of her. -Gulf News - 10/18/05

Powerful typhoon hits Ardebil in northwest Iran, killing two
A typhoon, with winds of up to 90 kph, hit some rural areas in the provincial capital of Ardebil in northwestern Iran Monday, killing two and injuring another, it was reported on Tuesday. - 10/18/05

Iran picks Friedrichshafen as World Cup headquarters
The Iranian national football team has selected the southwest German holiday resort town of Friedrichshafen as its Word Cup base, DPA quoted Iran's Croatian Coach Branko Ivankovic and Friedrichshafen Mayor Josef Buechelmeier as saying in Friedrichshafen on Tuesday. - 10/18/05

Rice cool to idea of one-on-one talks with Iran
An Iranian diplomat says his country is open to one-on-one talks with the United States, but Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Sunday the Bush administration prefers European nations continue to lead the effort to stop Iran's nuclear program. -USA Today - 10/18/05

Stirrings near Iran's oil fields in Khuzestan
While Tehran denies any role in Iraq, Iranian officials privately confess that they are deeply involved in Iraq and that their western neighbor must neither be allowed to fully stabilize, nor fall apart. They point to Western collusion in the sudden spike this year in ethnic unrest in the strategic, oil-producing province of Khuzestan and describe it as proof of a shadowy war that is receiving far less coverage in the international press than events in Iraq. -Daily Star - 10/18/05

Are we going to war with Iran?
The Sunday Telegraph warned last weekend that the UN had a last chance to avert war with Iran and, at a meeting in London last week, the US ambassador to the UN, John Bolton, expressed his regret that any failure by the UN security council to deal with Iran would damage the security council's relevance, implying that the US would solve the problem on its own. -Guardian - 10/18/05

NIAC hires staff in California, launches staffed SoCal chapter
NIAC is proud to announce the first step towards the establishment of a staffed Southern California Chapter that will serve the vast Iranian-American community in this region. - 10/18/05

Iran: State-owned economy most important challenge facing industry
An industry official said in Tehran on Monday that wide-spread government ownership of economy and lack of a viable industrial strategy are among the most important challenges facing the industrial sector in its bid to compete the international markets. - 10/18/05

Iran Eases Its Social Strictures
Stuck in traffic, the young driver with goatee, shades, and a roving eye spots his targets - two lanes over. Oozing self-confidence, he rolls down his window and motions to the passenger in the next car to roll down both his windows, so he can deliver his pickup line directly. -Seoul Times - 10/18/05

Moscow Takes Tougher Stance On Iran Nuclear Issue
No country, including the United States, will force Russia to abandon its nuclear commitment to Iran, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov declared yesterday. The uncompromising statement came one day after U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice failed to win Russian support for taking Iran before the UN Security Council for possible sanctions. - 10/18/05

Iran: Toll in Ahvaz twin bombings rises to 6
The number of people killed in Saturday's terrorist bombings in the southwestern city of Ahvaz in Khuzestan province of Iran has increased to 6, IRNA reported quoting a local official in Ahvaz. - 10/17/05

Iran Failed in Tourism Advertising, ATC Director
Iran has not been successful in using advertising for the development of its tourism industry, Arab Tourism Channel (ATC) director believes. - 10/17/05

Iran, coalition ships face-to-face in Persian Gulf waters
With just hundreds of meters setting them apart, US ships guarding Iraqi oil terminals and Iranian Revolutionary Guard boats stare at each other across the waters of the northern Gulf. -MEO - 10/17/05

Liar, liar, pants on fire
The latest aggressive posturing by the U.S. and U.K. toward Iran, and why we should all be a bit more concerned. -TPM Cafe - 10/17/05

Iraq Constitution Appears Likely to Pass Referendum
Local election officials in Diyala province say 70 percent of the 400,000 people who voted there in Saturday's referendum said "yes" to the draft constitution. Twenty-percent rejected it and 10 percent of the ballots were rejected as being irregular. - 10/17/05

Shia militants gaining strength in Basra
"We want to live in an Islamic republic," said one woman dressed in the traditional black abaya. The prospect of such an outcome from Iraq's new democratic process causes dread in London and Washington. But whatever happens nationally, Shia militias - many backed by Iran - are already imposing their own strict version of Islamic Sharia law on the streets of Basra, in southern Iraq. -BBC - 10/17/05

Iraq's Constitution Held Hostage by Foreign Terrorists
When George W. Bush swapped excuses for invading Iraq and decided his mission was to spread gun-point democracy and eradicate terrorism instead of finding WMD he should not have given ‘protected person status’ to 3800 terrorists in Camp Ashraf. -Soraya Sepahpour-Ulrich - 10/17/05

UK Ambassador: EU prepared to improve nuclear offer to Iran
Britain's Ambassador to Tehran has indicated that the European Union is prepared to break the deadlock over Iran's nuclear program by advancing its original offer made under the terms of the Paris Agreement. - 10/17/05

Bombings In Southwest Iran Blamed On Usual Suspect
Two explosions in the city of Ahvaz in southwestern Iran on 15 October were responsible for the death of five people, Iranian state radio reported on 16 October. - 10/17/05

Discrimination Of the so-called sexual type
There was this news in one of the newspapers of the capital on one of these days that the Ministry of Guidance of Islamic Republic of Iran has announced that women employee should not stay at work after 6pm, so that they would go home early and be present in and for their families. -Roya Monajem, Tehran - 10/17/05

Iran Welcomes European Catholics for January Holidays
Iranian travel agencies are looking forward to European and Korean tourists' arrival in January to witness the Gregorian New Year ceremony. Since this ceremony held in Iran is unique, some of the Europeans are interested to witness it closely. - 10/17/05

Iran/U.K.: Bombing Accusations Highlight 'Differences And Disagreements'
Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad has said Tehran strongly suspects Britain was behind deadly bombings in southern Iran on 15 October. The British Embassy in Tehran condemned the attacks the next day and said any charges of involvement are "completely without foundation." - 10/17/05

Israel, Iran, and the US: Nuclear War, Here We Come
The stage is set for a chain of events that could lead to nuclear war over chemical weapons in the immediate future. If these events unfold, the trigger will be Israel, the target Iran, the nuclear aggressor the U.S. -Antiwar.com - 10/17/05

Iranian Defense minister rejects British anti-Iran claim as unfounded
The allegations made by some British officials against Iran are considered as awkward claims to cover (its) occupying-style presence and secret actions which caused insecurity in Iraq, Najjar said. - 10/16/05

Britain denies Iran bomb claims
British officials in Iran have denied claims of UK involvement in two bomb attacks which killed at least four people on Saturday evening. -BBC - 10/16/05

Iran wins world blind powerlifting title
Iran was crowned at the world blind and poor-sighted powerlifting event in the Republic of Czech Saturday. - 10/16/05

Iraqis Reflect As Officials Start Counting Votes
Iraqi officials are counting ballots today from yesterday's referendum on whether to adopt a new draft constitution, in which an estimated 60 percent of Iraqis voted, protected by a vast security screen that deterred all but a few ineffectual insurgent attacks. - 10/16/05

Quiet and Calm in Baghdad
It's 9 a.m. on referendum day. Iraqis go to polls to vote on a new constitution that is meant to pave the way for elections in December and install a democratic system. Iraq is under complete lock down. Baghdad feels unusually quiet. -Farnaz Fassihi, WSJ - 10/16/05

Turkcell fights for Iran deal
Turkcell, the Turkish mobile phone operator, went to court on Sunday in an effort to save its stake in Iran's second private mobile phone network license. -Reuters - 10/16/05

Iran: Latest Ahvaz bomb injury figure raised to 86
Deputy Head of 'Jondi Shapour' University Medical Science Department said in Ahvaz on Saturday that the latest figures in today's terrorist bomb blasts in the southern city of Ahvaz indicate 86 people were injured. - 10/16/05

Bush told Blair of 'going beyond Iraq'
George Bush told Tony Blair shortly before the invasion of Iraq that he intended to target other countries, including Saudi Arabia, which, he implied, planned to acquire weapons of mass destruction. -Guardian - 10/16/05

Landmine kills Iranian policeman
Over 12,000 hectares of agriculture lands in the border city of Qassre Shirin are mine-infested, provincial official said. - 10/16/05

Iran to start gas shipment to Nakhichevan
Head of 'Azeri Gas' company said here Saturday that Iran will start shipment of natural gas to 'Nakhichevan autonomous Republic' next month. - 10/16/05

Iranian FM Spokesman: US admits Iran's nuclear right
Talking to domestic and foreign reporters at his weekly press conference, Asefi was commenting on the recent remarks made by the US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice on Iran. - 10/16/05

Waiting for justice in Iran
In July 1988, during the Iran-Iraq war, the Iranian village of Zardeh was hit by Iraqi chemical bombs. Frances Harrison returns to the village to see how local people are coping with the legacy. -BBC - 10/16/05

The songs that bomb in Teheran's hit parade
He has the standard accoutrements of many a Middle Eastern crooner: black leather jacket, slicked-back hair and a maudlin line in balladeering. But now the Iranian singer Nima Mashiha, author of the hit album Silver Night, has switched his attentions from the power of love to the power of the atom with a brand-new song in praise of his country's controversial nuclear ambitions. -Telegraph, UK - 10/16/05

Iran's Ambassador to London: Iran's nuclear programme misrepresented
In a point-by-point dissection, Mohammad Hossein Adeli dismantled all the mis-statements of facts, false alarms and threats systematically used to discredit Iran's legitimate right to peacefully develop a nuclear power industry. - 10/16/05

France to take avant-garde role on EU-Iran standoff on nuclear program
'Iran' Persian daily said on Saturday that following the cold atmosphere which emerged in Tehran-London relations with Tehran accusing Britain of inciting unrest in Khuzestan province and British accusation that Iran is meddling with Iraqi affairs, France, which had been sponsor of Iran-European countries talks so far, has once again, undertaken its avant-garde role in this respect. - 10/15/05

Iranian young man Reza Kahouli awarded as one of world's four best inventors
Iranian inventor Reza Kahouli was awarded as world's four best inventors by the British Inventors Society (BIS). - 10/15/05

Wary Eyes Cast on Iraqi Kurds
The proposed Iraqi constitution that would enshrine a measure of independence for the country's ethnic Kurds is viewed with apprehension by three neighbors already struggling to accommodate the aspirations of their own Kurdish populations. -Washington Post - 10/15/05

Germany welcomes Iran's call to resume nuclear negotiations with EU3
"The EU 3 (Germany, France, Britain) are ready to enter in a dialogue (with Iran) on the basis of the Paris accord and the latest International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) resolution and welcome everything which is going in that direction," German Foreign Ministry Spokesman Jens Ploetner told IRNA. - 10/15/05

Iran's Ivankovic Under-Fire
Iran’s 2-0 defeat in Seoul has, unsurprisingly, intensified the pressure on Iran Coach Branko Ivankovic. -Goal.com - 10/15/05

Iranian adultress sentenced to death by stoning
An Iranian woman has been sentenced to death by stoning for adultery, local media reported on Saturday, although Tehran maintains it no longer executes women in this way. -Reuters - 10/15/05

India, Russia hold joint air exercise
Indian Army personnel and special airborne troops from Russia took part in joint air exercises for better understanding and coordination in combating terrorism in New Delhi on Friday. - 10/15/05

U.S. Officials Laud Iraqi Referendum
U.S. officials are portraying the 15 October constitutional referendum in Iraq as a milestone in the country's political progress. Without predicting the outcome, officials say the vote in itself signals the enormous democratic steps the country has taken. - 10/15/05

Iraqis Vote On New Constitution Amid Tight Security
Iraqi President Jalal Talabani was one of the first to cast a ballot. He told Radio Free Iraq the referendum is a milestone in Iraq's transition to democracy. - 10/15/05

Russia Opposes Referring Iran to Security Council on Nuclear Issue
Russia says it agrees with the United States that Iran must be prevented from acquiring nuclear weapons, but Moscow sees no reason to refer Tehran to the United Nations Security Council for possible sanctions. - 10/15/05

Iran Prepares to Register Golestan Palace on UNESCO List
Golestan Palace will be included in Iran's complimentary recommended list for registration on UNESCO World Heritage List in 2007. - 10/15/05

Orient-Occident Music Join in a Tour around France
Persian, Kurdish and Medieval Vocal Music come together in a new-age album performed in a historical monument in Iran. - 10/15/05

Europeans need genuine negotiations with Iran, says BASIC
Europeans have to enter into negotiations with the genuine desire to compromise, says Paul Ingram of British American Security Information Council (Basic). - 10/15/05

Convocation continues with Persepolis author
On Monday, a throng of Oberlin residents and students filled Finney Chapel to see an unusual convocation speaker: Marjane Satrapi, an Iranian graphic novelist, best known for her first book, Persepolis. -Oberlin Review - 10/15/05

Iran in a different light
I described my trip to Iran as inspirational. I guess when you visit your homeland after twelve years, you have different emotions, you see the good and the bad aspects. At the beginning, I saw the negative components, such as traffic and pollution... -Fariba Amini - 10/14/05

Forgotten Empire as Revealed by its Curator
Having an Iranian wife, John Curtis, Keeper of the Ancient Near East department at the British Museum and curator of the current exhibition of "Forgotten Empire: the World of Ancient Persia", is familiar with Iranian customs and traditions. - 10/14/05

UK troops 'not free' to enter Iran, says House of Commons leader Geoff Hoon
Leader of the House of Commons Geoff Hoon has denied that Foreign Secretary Jack Straw has suggested that local British commanders in southern Iraq can authorize troops to enter Iran. - 10/14/05

EU Demands Halt To Iran's Nuclear Work, Attacks Tehran's Human Rights Record
The European Union yesterday warned Iran that opportunities for negotiation will end unless Tehran stops processing uranium and improves its human rights record. - 10/14/05

Iran: Sivand Dam Welcomes Tour of World Experts
The Tourleaders' Association of Iran is planning to hold a tour for a team of world dam experts to Fars province to visit the Sivand Dam and Pasargadae cultural heritage site presumably in November. - 10/14/05

Persian perspective
"Persian Visions; Contemporary Photography from Iran" features more than 60 pieces by 20 of the country’s most notable photographers, offering a window into modern Persian life and a chance to gain greater understanding of an ancient culture. -Jackson Hole Star-Tribune - 10/14/05

Iraq: Arab Sunni Leaders Split Over Referendum On Draft Constitution
Arab Sunni leaders are divided over how their community should vote in Iraq's referendum on the draft constitution that takes place on 15 October. Many clerics are using mosques to urge people to take part in the poll but vote "No" on the charter. - 10/14/05

Iraq has Descended into Anarchy, says Fisk
Most of Iraq is in a state of anarchy, with insurgents controlling parts of Baghdad just half a mile from the so-called Green Zone, an Independent debate was told last night. -Independent - 10/14/05

Promote Iraqi women's rights within an Islamic framework
Whether or not the Iraqi constitution passes on Oct. 15, one thing is clear: Iraq will continue to be dominated by religiously motivated, well-organized Shiite political parties, determined to implement Islamic law and enforce social conservatism throughout society. -CSM - 10/14/05

Reid warns over 'Iranian' attacks
Iranians could be playing "a risky game" by getting involved in Iraq, Defence Secretary John Reid has warned. -BBC - 10/14/05

Potomac Man Released in Slaying of His Mother, 54
Mark K. Makki, the 23-year-old Potomac man accused of killing his mother, was released from jail on bond last night after prosecutors acknowledged that a preliminary DNA test does not link him to his mother's body at the time of the crime. -Washington Post - 10/14/05

Quake hits suburbs of Kerman in southeastern Iran
An earthquake measuring 4.5 on the Richter scale jolted suburbs of the southeastern city of Kerman at early hours on Friday. - 10/14/05

Saudi 'working to cut oil price'
Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah has said he is working towards cutting oil prices following recent rises, in his first interview since coming to power. -BBC - 10/14/05

Iranian militants in power stir fears
The rise of militants to power positions in Iran is raising new worries about Iranian military forces' deploying new weapons that threaten oil supplies or future long-range nuclear or chemical missile strikes. -Washington Times - 10/14/05

Deva, Asura and Ahura
In the season of the Durga Puja, as the goddess slays the demon, the myth recalls the battles of a distant past which shaped the course of Indian history. Indian epics routinely refer to the conflicts between the Devas and the Asuras in ancient times. In all probability it was Iran where the two Aryan tribes fell out. -Asian Age - 10/14/05

Broadcast Jamming Continues in Post Cold-War World
During the so-called Cold War, totalitarian regimes sought to block radio or TV broadcasts, except the ones they controlled. The Cold War is over, but those jamming efforts continue in some parts of the world. - 10/14/05

Iran is willing to resume nuclear talks
Iran is willing to resume talks with three European countries about its nuclear program, according to a statement from the Foreign Ministry, but it insisted again on its right to enrich uranium for peaceful uses. -IHT - 10/14/05

US and Iranian airmen together for quake
Old distrust was put aside at a Pakistani airfield on Thursday when US airmen jumped in to help unload an Iranian military plane that flew in with a mobile hospital for victims of a massive earthquake. -Daily Times - 10/14/05

Iranian women footballers to play German team
Iran's women's national football team is to play a friendly next month against a German selection, the Tehran sports daily Iran-Varzeshi reported Thursday. -Expatica - 10/14/05

Iranian FM expounds on his negotiations with Chinese officials
Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki on Friday expressed satisfaction with his negotiations with the Chinese officials on bilateral, regional and international issues. - 10/14/05

Hafez Commemoration Ceremony Held in Paris
A ceremony marking the commemoration of the prominent 8th century Persian poet Khajeh Shamseddin Mohammad Hafez Shirazi at the Palace of Versailles in the French capital of Paris on October 12, 2005. - 10/14/05

A travel Agent's Initiative to Introduce Iran
Shiraz-based Darwan Tour & Travel Company has launched a contest for papers on ancient civilizations, offering free tours and accommodations in Iran as its top three winners’ prize. “Once Upon a Time the Ancients” is an open invitation to all intellectuals, historians, and those who are interested in sharing their perspectives of the ancient civilizations’ contributions towards the betterment, unity and co-existence of the world’s nations. - 10/13/05

Iranians wait for change from Ahmadinejad
The new president, more than 100 days into his term, faces persistent discontent at home. -CSM - 10/13/05

Samira Makhmalbaf
Samira Makhmalbaf has been likened to Sofia Coppola. Both are young and attractive and both have famous film-director fathers. The similarities are obvious - but so, too, is the glaring difference. Samira was born and raised and lives in Iran, and her films reflect the tricky issue of being a woman in the Middle East today. - - 10/13/05

Iran News daily: Is Iran's 'East-leaning' strategy working?
An English-language daily in Tehran on Thursday focused on China-Iran relations and asked the sobering question of whether Tehran's longstanding "East-leaning" policy was holding out. - 10/13/05

President Ahmadinejad: Linking Iran's economy to nuclear issue incorrect
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said here in first joint meeting of the government and the Majlis (parliament), "Linking the country's economic status to Iran's nuclear program is incorrect since there is no logical relation between the two." - 10/13/05

South Korea defeats Iran 2-0 in soccer friendly
Two shots taking vicious deflection off defenders inspired South Korea into a spirit-raising 2-0 win over Iran in a football friendly in Seoul on Wednesday. - 10/13/05

Comedy Show in Hollywood to Benefit Hurricane Victims
The Iranian-American Bar Association is pleased to announce its sponsorship of Humor for Humanity, a comedy show to benefit hurricane victims. On Sunday, October 16th, a diverse group of talented comedians will take the stage at the Comedy Store, located at 8433 Sunset Boulevard, Hollywood. - 10/13/05

Persian delights await at new Forest Avenue stop
A new Persian restaurant just opened in Portland, apparently the first of its kind north of Boston. Shahnaz Mahager, owner of Shahnaz Persian Grille at 795 Forest Ave., says her new labor of love is about more than making money. -MaineToday.com - 10/13/05

PAKISTAN: World boosts quake response
As the scale of the devastation caused by Saturday's South Asian earthquake becomes clearer, many countries and international bodies are increasing their support to help millions of survivors in the region. - 10/13/05

Iraq's Shiite Hub Awaits Its Day
Since sweeping to power 8 1/2 months ago in the first elections since Hussein's fall, Iraq's long-persecuted Shiite majority has proved all but unstoppable in its quest to remake the country its way. -Washington Post - 10/13/05

Go home by dusk, Iranian women told
Female civil servants at Iran’s culture ministry and female journalists at the state newspaper and news agency must be out of the office by dusk to be with their families, a directive said on Tuesday. -Reuters - 10/13/05

U.S. Judge Awards Hostage's Family $91M
Relatives of a former U.S. hostage held in Lebanon for more than five years were awarded $91 million by a U.S. judge for emotional distress in a lawsuit filed against Iran. -AP - 10/13/05

Iraq: Saddam Hussein's Trial Could Draw Line Under An Era
Saddam Hussein's trial is due to start on 19 October, four days after Iraqis vote in a referendum on a draft constitution. The first charges concern a massacre in the village of Dujail, where Saddam's forces killed 143 people in 1982. - 10/13/05

British MEP Emma Nicholson: Iran has more advanced form of democracy than most of her neighbours
A renowned Member of the European Parliament Wednesday said the Islamic Republic of Iran has much to offer the region and the wider world. - 10/13/05

Iran's heritage deserves respect from America and Europe
The greatness that was Persia continues to endure through the repeated turmoil of the Middle East -Guardian - 10/13/05

Official: Law on stock exchanges will bring back calm to Iran's stock market
The law on stock exchanges, if approved by Majlis, will bring more tranquility to the stock exchange market, said Deputy Minister of Economy and Finance Tahmasb Mazaheri in Tehran on Wednesday. - 10/13/05

How do Iranian-Americans factor into U.S. policy towards Iran?
The Iranian-American Bar Association (IABA) will be hosting a panel discussion titled “How do Iranian-Americans factor into U.S. policy towards Iran?” The event will be held from 6:30 PM – 8:30 at George Washington University on Monday, October 24, 2005. - 10/13/05

European Parliament backs EU efforts for diplomatic solution to Iran's nuclear program
The European Parliament adopted a joint resolution on Thursday saying that the Islamic Republic of Iran ''has the right to develop a nuclear program according to Article IV of the NPT and supports the proposals of the EU for cooperation with Iran in the nuclear field for peaceful use.'' - 10/13/05

A short visit to Persepolis, Shiraz
Recently with my friend we went for a short trip to fabulous Shiraz, the city of love and poetry. We had set out to see a few places in the short time that we had. Persepolis -Takhte-Jamshid was for sure one of the sites that we were desperate to see, -Syma Sayyah, Tehran - 10/13/05

Winged Goddesses Flew over Iran
The recent excavations in Rabat Teppe archaeological site in Sardasht, Northwestern Iran, led to discovery of four icons of winged goddesses on bricks which belong to 3000 years ago. These are the first ever winged goddesses found in Iran. - 10/12/05

Why EU, Iran still far apart over nukes
For months before Iran's June elections, front-runner and former President Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani sent clandestine messages to Washington and to Europe: "You can trust me to lead Iran to moderation." -CSM - 10/12/05

Iranian president voices hope for successful Iraqi referendum, blames unrest on continued occupation
The Iranian president hoped that referendum will be held successfully in Iraq (on October 15) and the Iraqi people would see full establishment of the government soon. - 10/12/05

Iran: Parliament commission approves Convention against Chemical Weapons
Iran signed up to International Convention against Chemical Weapons (CCW) when it was first put to signature at the United Nations. The commission's approval of the convention paved the way for its ratification by the Majlis. - 10/12/05

Massive UN Aid Operation to South Asia Earthquake Victims Under Way
The United Nations is coordinating humanitarian operations with the Pakistani government. It says the earthquake killed more than 30,000 people. Some four million people have been affected. - 10/12/05

Persia in pieces
British Museum director Neil MacGregor introduces five objects that tell the story of the largest political unit the world, in 500BC, had ever seen -Guardian - 10/12/05

Iranian President announces plan to fight financial corruption
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on Wednesday that there is a consensus among the government, Judiciary and the parliament to fulfill his election campaign promise of campaign against financial corruption. - 10/12/05

Trident's future 'linked to Iran'
The future of the UK's Trident missile deterrent could be affected if Iran develops nuclear weapons, Foreign Office Minister Kim Howells has said. -BBC - 10/12/05

Does anyone know what's next?
Did anyone else notice this report and wonder why such a deployment took place? This is just the 5th time in the history of the 101st that the entire division has been deployed all at once. The soldiers will be gone a year.” -American Chronicle - 10/12/05

African Lions Born in Tehran
For the first time ever, African lions were born in Darabad Nature and Wildlife Museum in Tehran. - 10/12/05

Russia offers US to join talks between Iran and EU on Iranian nuclear program
Iran might harbor plans to build nuclear weapons, but the international community should use incentives rather than threats to persuade Tehran to drop them, Russian analysts said Tuesday. -Pravda - 10/12/05

Iran 'is training Basra killers'
Specialist bomb-makers targeting British troops in southern Iraq are being trained by an elite arm of Iran's armed forces, UK defence sources say. -BBC - 10/12/05

Ganji barred from seeing visitors
Iran’s judiciary said on Tuesday it was not allowing jailed dissident journalist Akbar Ganji to see visitors, arguing they could lead him astray or harm him. -Daily Times - 10/12/05

Azerbaijan: President Aliev urged to stem wave of attacks on journalists
Reporters Without Borders called today on Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliev to take immediate steps to protect journalists after a wave of violence against the media in the run-up to parliamentary elections on 6 November. - 10/12/05

Some Iraqis Fear Constitution Will Give Power to Iran
With four-days left before Iraq holds a referendum on a new constitution, some Iraqis are voicing concern that the charter could deepen neighboring Iran's influence in Iraq and provoke a conflict, which could spill over into other countries in the region. - 10/12/05

An Islamic Reformation?
Reza Aslan author of the highly praised “No God but God: The Origins, Evolution, and the Future of Islam,” gave a spirited dinner lecture at Au Pied Bistro in Georgetown Sunday. -NIAC - 10/12/05

End of the vine
The Islamic revolution abolished Iran's ancient tradition of wine-making but the residents of Khollar are showing some bottle, writes Robert Tait -Guardian - 10/12/05

Democracy: The God That Failed - In Iraq, Ukraine, and Kyrgyzstan
The idea animating U.S. foreign policy at the moment is simple: if we "democratize" the Middle East – at gunpoint if necessary, peacefully if possible – we can "drain the swamp" of terrorism and defeat the worldwide Islamist insurgency that is now arrayed against us. -Antiwar.com - 10/12/05

Hafiz Lovers Pay Tribute to the Legend
12th of October is Hafiz Day in Iran, and many ceremonies are held in commemoration of this great Iranian poet in Iran and some other countries throughout the world. - 10/12/05

New Iranian President's Diplomacy Sparks Controversy
The general lack of diplomatic finesse displayed by President Mahmud Ahmadinejad and his new administration has caught observers by surprise, and the Iranians' actions and comments on the nuclear issue have alienated foreign capitals that previously were positively disposed toward Tehran. - 10/11/05

"Iran Symphony" to be performed by Honar Academy of Culture
The Iranian composer of "Iran Symphony", Shahin Farhat, said in Tehran on Tuesday that Honar Academy of Culture is commissioned to perform the "Iran Symphony". The symphony represents the national glory, history and folk music, while old melodies have been included in the piece in a modern way. - 10/11/05

UK 'hypocritical on terror' by not banning MKO campaign meetings
The British government was accused Tuesday of being 'hypocritical on terror' by failing to use existing legislation against proscribed groups, like the Mojahedin-e Khalq terrorist group. - 10/11/05

Iran restricts footballers' style
A recent ruling by Iran's football federation banning players from sporting "unusual" and "foreign" styles is sparking debate in Iran's football community. -BBC - 10/11/05

UK dialogue with Iran imperative
Ever since the revolution in 1979, Iran's government has been difficult to deal with, resentful, inclined to behave in ways which other countries - particularly Western ones - find infuriating. -BBC - 10/11/05

UK backtracks, welcomes Iran's efforts to build constructive Iraq relations
The British government has backtracked on accusations made by Prime Minister Tony Blair against Iran, while praising Tehran's efforts to build a "constructive relationship" with Iraq. - 10/11/05

Iran, Iraq sign joint economic cooperation communique
Iran-Iraq Economic and Reconstruction Commission wrapped up its meeting here Tuesday by issuing a communique. - 10/11/05

The Saudi-U.K. Link
War drums are beating faster and louder. They deliver their cooked up conspiracy in perfect harmony – The British announced that Iran was behind the killing of all 8 British soldiers killed in Iraq this year.[i] Soldiers who had gone to Iraq to find weapons of mass destruction, are told their mission has changed – they are to impose democracy on a war torn and bewildered nation while getting ready to attack another. The cacophony of deception is unbearable. -Soraya Sepahpour-Ulrich - 10/11/05

Farah Pahlavi, Iran's Ex-Empress, Receives the Anne Morrow Lindbergh Grace and Distinction Award 2005
Each year Baylor College of Medicine's Huffington Center on Aging, at an annual Women’s Health Summit, honors an internationally acclaimed woman with the Anne Morrow Lindbergh Award for Living with Grace and Distinction. -Darius KADIVAR - 10/11/05

Iran-Spain joint stamp published
The Iran-Spain joint stamp is published in Madrid, Spain, October 10, 2005, during an official ceremony. - 10/11/05

Rice Lauds Kyrgyzstan's Democratic Progress
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice arrived in Kyrgyzstan today for her first stop in a three-day tour of Central Asia. - 10/11/05

Iranian Children in Governor's seat
On the occasion of Children's Week, a group of Shirazi children on October 10, 2005, attend the provincial governor-general's office and take a few minuets to play his role in a symbolic manner. - 10/11/05

Iran Air carried 855,000 passengers in August
Iran's national flag carrier Iran Air (Homa) carried about 855,000 passengers in August 2005, according to Iran Air's Public Relations Department. - 10/11/05

Iran pistachios threaten California's crop
Today, Reinecke and four valley growers are planting their arguments with the International Trade Commission. The Californians want to convince the commission that lowering the high tariff on Iranian raw pistachios would bite U.S. producers. Iran leads the world in pistachio production, and its orchards outpace California's 130,000 acres. Iranian prices are correspondingly lower. -Modesto Bee - 10/11/05

Condi May Be Bush's Expediency Council
Just as the theocratic leadership in Iran is trying to rein in the aggressive nationalism of the new president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, so Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice appears to be restraining aggressive nationalists in Washington who want to escalate rising tensions with Iran and Syria. -IPS - 10/11/05

Online job service launched for multinationals in Iran
Iran's growing internet landscape received a major boost today with the launch of a new internet-based recruitment service by IranTalent. Founded in 2003, Tehran-based IranTalent has been operating as a full service HR, recruitment and executive search consultancy catering primarily to the needs of multinational companies. - 10/10/05

Photo: Gohar Lake in Lorestan, Iran
Head of Doroud Department of Environment says on October 9, 2005, that the charming Gohar Lake in the vicinity of the provincial town of Doroud attracted 18,195 domestic and foreign tourists during the current holiday season. - 10/10/05

Kish FTZ serves as center for attraction of foreign investments
Iran's southern Kish Island can serve as the center for attraction of foreign investment, said a top business official in Kish on Sunday. - 10/10/05

German TUV to Standardize Iran's Tourism
German experts of TUV will standardize Iran's tourism industry. TUV is a well-known standardizing company of the world, which has representatives in more than 80 countries. Standardizing tourism industry is one of the sub branches of the company's activities. - 10/10/05

A Central Pillar of Iraq Policy Crumbling
Bush's administration has insisted that political progress would quell the insurgency. But the reverse may be true, U.S. analysts say. -LA Times - 10/10/05

Iran, Iraq agree on air, railway, land transportation cooperation
Iran's Minister of Road and Transportation Mohammad Rahmati and his Iraqi counterpart S. al-Maleki also reached agreement on early resumption of safe and secure flights from Iran to Iraq, further exchange of cargo and passengers, reconstruction of Iraqi ports and jetties as well as Najaf International Airport - 10/10/05

Blundering Into Syria? - The Triumph of Ideology Over Reality
Not content with the terrorist-breeding instability he caused by invading Iraq, President Bush is plotting with Israel to repeat the disaster in Syria. -CounterPunch - 10/10/05

EU wants to resume negotiations with Iran
The European Union High Representative for common foreign and security policy, Javier Solana, on Monday reiterated that the 25-member European bloc wants negotiations to resume with the Islamic Republic on the nuclear issues. - 10/10/05

120 French Intellectuals Visit Iran
French Images of Iran belongs to 50 years ago and a new French delegation has come to the country to transform those images. "We have come to here to see, hear and understand Iran and its people," said Antoine Sfeir, head of the delegation. - 10/10/05

Caspian Sea working group hold 18th meet in Baku
Eighteenth meeting of Caspian Sea working group was held in presence of special representatives of five Caspian Sea states in Baku from October 6-7. - 10/10/05

Fundraiser Reception For Iranian-American Darab Ghaffary, Candidate For Sunnyvale City Council
Never before in the history of the Bay Area has the Iranian-American community had such a critical opportunity to not just influence, but perhaps to determine the outcome of an election. - 10/10/05

Let's not forsake Iran
India's vote against Iran at the last IAEA meeting has pleased the US, but has surprised much of the international community, including Iran, the members of NAM (Non-Aligned Movement), as well as Russia and China. -Rediff, India - 10/10/05

Iranian Poet Saadi Shirazi: Of one Essence is the human race
Saadi was born in Shiraz around 1200. He died in Shiraz around 1292. He lost his father in early childhood. With the help of his uncle, Saadi completed his early education in Shiraz. Later he was sent to study in Baghdad at the renowned Nezamiyeh College, where he acquired the traditional learning of Islam. -Syma Sayyah - 10/10/05

Iranian Official: Negotiation best way for solving Iran's nuclear issue
Deputy chief of Iran's Atomic Energy Organization (IAEO) for planning and international affairs, Mohammad Saeedi, said on Saturday that it would be reasonable for Iran and EU to avoid any threatening approach towards the nuclear case and merely solve it through negotiations. - 10/9/05

Lifting the veil
The finest collection of 20th-century western art outside Europe and America has been gathering dust in storage. Why? Because it's owned by the Islamic Republic of Iran. But now, Christopher de Bellaigue reports, these spectacular works are finally being displayed in Tehran -Guardian - 10/9/05

American debacle
Some 60 years ago Arnold Toynbee concluded, in his monumental "Study of History," that the ultimate cause of imperial collapse was "suicidal statecraft." Sadly for George W. Bush's place in history and — much more important — ominously for America's future, that adroit phrase increasingly seems applicable to the policies pursued by the United States since the cataclysm of 9/11. -Zbigniew Brzezinski, LA Times - 10/9/05

Iranian director Tamineh Milani receives accolades from U.S. festival
Tamineh Milani's latest film "Extra Wife" won the best director and best film awards at the 2005 Arpa International Film Festival held at the ArcLight Cinemas in Hollywood from October 3 to 7, ISNA reported on Saturday - 10/9/05

Armenian Authors Gather in Yerevan
The Biggest gathering of Armenian authors will be held in Yerevan from 8 to 12 October with the presence of 2 Iranian literary figures; Zoya Pirzad and Ahmad Nouri Zadeh. - 10/9/05

Bush: God told me to invade Iraq
President George Bush has claimed he was told by God to invade Iraq and attack Osama bin Laden's stronghold of Afghanistan as part of a divine mission to bring peace to the Middle East, security for Israel, and a state for the Palestinians. -Independent - 10/9/05

Iranian FM: US follows interventionist goals in international campaign against terrorism
"It has become clear now that US war against Iraqi weapons of mass destruction (WMD) has been nothing more than a lie and the US has been discredited by the world public opinion," Mottaki said. - 10/9/05

In Basra, an enemy lurks in the ranks
The most powerful and feared institution here in southern Iraq's largest city is a shadowy force of 200 to 300 police officers known collectively as the Jameat, who dominate the local police and who are said to murder and torture at will. They answer to the leaders of Basra's sectarian militias. -IHT - 10/9/05

Iran press fumes over UK claims
Iranian newspapers have been building up a head of steam over the past few days after Britain accused elements in Iran of involvement in fatal attacks against British forces in southern Iraq. -BBC - 10/9/05

Bombings: confusion and contradiction over Iran’s role
IN the war of words which broke out between Britain and Iran last week one salient fact emerged. Once again, the spat was being triggered by the existence of specific weapons – in this case “shaped charge” ordnance which can penetrate heavy armour – and once again there were two very different versions of what was actually happening. -Sunday Herald, UK - 10/9/05

Iran Moves to Curb Hard-Liners
Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the Shiite Muslim cleric who holds ultimate authority in Iran, has altered the country's power structure by granting a relatively moderate panel new authority to supervise an elected government increasingly dominated by religious hard-liners. -Washington Post - 10/9/05

American Attitude on Promoting Democracy Gets a Thumbs-down
In his 2005 State of the Union Address, President Bush committed the United States to an active democratization program aimed at ending tyranny in the world. This idea has emerged in the post-9/11 era as one of the central principles of the US foreign policy. -Media Monitors Network - 10/9/05

Photo: Children drawing at "Chehelsotoun" on International Children Day
Two children are drawing outside the historical monument of Chehelsotoun in the ancient city of Isfahan, central Iran, October 8, 2005, on the occasion of the International Children Day. - 10/9/05

Tens Of Thousands Thought Dead From South Asian Quake
The death toll in the region -- where Pakistan, India, and Afghanistan were hardest hit -- has climbed to more than 19,000, according to official figures. But authorities were already warning that figure could rise to 30,000 or more, with tens of thousands of others injured. - 10/9/05

Death Toll Rising in South Asia Earthquake
Frantic rescue efforts continue as the death toll from South Asia's massive earthquake tops 18,000, most of them in Pakistan. There are reports the number of dead could pass 25,000 in Pakistan alone. - 10/9/05

Iran: Tehran Stock Exchange Has Long-Term Difficulties
Iranian commentators have recently referred to a "crisis" on the Tehran Stock Exchange. The slump is particularly evident because the market's key index (Tepix) rose by nearly 80 percent between March 2001 and April 2003, while the indices of exchanges in Frankfurt, London, New York, Paris, and Tokyo tumbled by 40-70 percent. - 10/9/05

Shahin Farhat composes "Iran Symphony"
Iranian composer Shahin Farhat recently finished composing a work entitled "Iran Symphony" to prove his patriotism once again. He had previously created "Iranian Lady Symphony", "Damavand Symphony", and "Persian Gulf Symphony" in this genre. - 10/9/05

US Denies Considering Expanded Ties with Iran
The Bush administration said Thursday it is not considering any upgrade of diplomatic contacts with Iran. The remarks followed a newspaper report that an overture to set up a low-level official relationship with Iran was an option under discussion in Washington. - 10/7/05

Chemical Weapons, Nuclear War: What's at stake in a war on Iran
The Bush administration started a conventional war over imagined chemical weapons in Iraq. It is getting ready to start a war over imagined nuclear weapons, and real chemical ones, against Iran. This time it may be a nuclear war. -Antiwar - 10/7/05

Blair's honesty over Iran charges in doubt
Doubts have been raised by a British journalist over Prime Minister Tony Blair's honesty in making allegations at a news conference that Iran is interfering in Iraq. - 10/7/05

Oil Sector Absorbs Iran's Foreign Investments
Despite Iran's eagerness to expand investment in different sectors, reviving its economy and therefore help its development, investment is not justified in the country, due to high economic and political risks, making Iran an unattractive destination for investors, except for those in petrochemical fields. - 10/7/05

Russia calls for cooperation between Iran, IAEA
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said in Moscow on Thursday that his country calls for continued cooperation between Iran and International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). - 10/7/05

Iran denies any involvement in Iraq, says Talabani
"I personally talked to some Iranian brothers, they denied it," Talabani said at a joint press conference with the British Prime Minister Tony Blair in London....Analysts have questioned the timing of the allegations, coinciding with Talebani's first visit to London and coming at a time of growing fears of civil war in Iraq, with some suggesting Iran could be being set up as a possible 'scapegoat.' - 10/7/05

Gay Iranian seeks help from U.N. after torture
Photos of a young Iranian man’s back, slashed from a whipping, are the result of a second beating he said he endured for being gay in a country where homosexuality remains punishable by death. -Washington Blade - 10/7/05

Solana's spokesperson : EU's right to decide on Iran's negotiating team
Mrs. Cristina Gallach, spokesperson for EU High Representative for a common foreign and security policy Javeir Solana, Friday said that it was up to the EU to decide who will take part from the European side in negotiations with Iran . - 10/7/05

Nobel Peace Prize Goes To El-Baradei
The United Nations' nuclear watchdog and its chief have won this year's Nobel Peace Prize. The award, one of the world's top accolades, went to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and Muhammad el-Baradei for their efforts against the proliferation of nuclear weapons. - 10/7/05

Al Gore: American Democracy in Trouble
I came here today because I believe that American democracy is in grave danger. It is no longer possible to ignore the strangeness of our public discourse. I know that I am not the only one who feels that something has gone basically and badly wrong in the way America's fabled "marketplace of ideas" now functions. -Common Dreams - 10/7/05

Iranian FM, Qatari Emir discuss ties, regional issues
Iran's Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki discussed bilateral relations and regional developments with Qatari Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa ath-Thani in Doha on Thursday. - 10/7/05

Bush Raises the Stakes in Terror War
Despite fading public -- and Republican -- confidence in his performance in Iraq and the wider "war on terror", U.S. President George W. Bush Thursday raised the stakes by warning that a U.S. withdrawal from Iraq would lead to a takeover by al Qaeda and the subversion of its pro-western neighbours. -IPS - 10/7/05

German, Iranian experts probe Mahan Airliner emergency landing
German and Iranian aviation experts are investigating the reasons for emergency landing of Mahan Air flight at Cologne-Bonn Airport on Thursday morning. - 10/7/05

Bisotun Engineering Astonished ICOMOS
The representative of International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) who traveled to Iran to provide a report on Bisotun was astonished by the 2000-year-old mastery of the complex in 5 engineering fields: irrigation, stone craft, restoration, bridging, and industry. - 10/7/05

Chain Shelters to Bring Tourists to Iran Mountains
The Mountaineering Federation of Iran is going to change the mountains throughout the country to desirable places for tourists who love nature and sports with a 5-year program. - 10/7/05

US Concerned About Iranian Military's Nuclear Role
The State Department Wednesday expressed concern about the role of the Iranian military in the country's nuclear efforts. An Iranian exile group charged this week that that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has put the military in firm control of the program. - 10/6/05

Iran's Embassy in London denounces British accusations on Iran's interference in Iraq
Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran in London denounced certain new accusations published in some British press against Iran on interference in southern part of Iraq. The Embassy in its response to those phony accusations has stressed that Iran has always maintained a status against aggressive moves in Iraq. - 10/6/05

World's First Postage Stamp of Rumi Published
The first postage stamp with the picture of Rumi has been published by Syria, to be followed by Iran, turkey, and Afghanistan by end of March 2006. - 10/6/05

U.K. Blames Iran For Attacks On British Soldiers in Iraq
Iran has categorically denied the British accusation that it has been supplying Iraqi insurgents with the sophisticated roadside bombs that have killed eight British soldiers in southern Iraq this year. - 10/6/05

European Parliament to discus Iran's nuclear programme
The European Parliament will debate Iran's nuclear program during its plenary session in Brussels on October 12. A resolution on the Iranian nuclear program will be drawn up by the EP's Foreign Affairs Committee and be put to vote on October 13. - 10/6/05

Tremor hits Minab in southern Iran
A tremor with the magnitude of 3.8 on he open-ended Richter scale shook the outskirts of Minab city in Hormuzgan province at 17:09 hours local time (13:39GMT) on Wednesday. - 10/6/05

Saudi Arabian FM calls Iranian counterpart
Saudi Arabian Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal talked with his Iranian counterpart over the phone on Wednesday evening. In his call, Saudi foreign minister expressed satisfaction over friendly relations between the two countries and emphasized the necessity of continuation of consultations on issues of mutual interest. - 10/6/05

Pentagon Analyst Pleads Guilty in Spy Case
A top Pentagon analyst said he never meant to harm the United States when he leaked secret information to Israeli embassy officials and members of a pro-Israel lobbying group. -AP - 10/6/05

Canadian resolution
Canada will put forward a resolution at the United Nations for the third year in a row accusing Iran of human-rights violations, Foreign Minister Pierre Pettigrew said yesterday. -Globe & Mail - 10/6/05

UAE President asks for broader relations with Iran
President Sheikh Khalifa bin-Zayed an-Nahyan on Wednesday asked for expanding his country's ties with the Islamic Republic of Iran "as far as possible." According to IRNA correspondent in Abu Dhabi, the UAE President made the comment in a meeting with visiting IRI Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki in Emirates' Al-Ain City. - 10/6/05

IRAN: Dissident Journalist Stabbed
The Iranian journalist and activist for the rights of the minority Azera community in Iran, Masoumeh Babapour, has been found almost dead on a bridge in the south of Tabriz, the provincial capital of Iranian Azerbaijan, in the northwest of Iran. Babapour was kidnapped by four unidentified people on Monday morning while on her way to work. -AKI - 10/6/05

Tehran's Stock Exchange risks closure
The Stock Exchange of Tehran risks closure, according to an interview with economist Mehdi Taghavi, published on Fars News. "The Iranian stock market has still not succeeded in recovering from the electoral shock," said Taghavi. -AKI - 10/6/05

Turkey's gas imports from Iran back to normal
Turkish state-owned oil and gas Pipeline Company 'Botas' in a bulletin said on Wednesday that the delay in gas imports from Iran has been alleviated and gas flow has returned to normal levels. The Turkish company had said earlier this week that due to disruptions in the pipeline it has stopped gas imports from Iran. - 10/6/05

Ban (your) nukes!
While American diplomats have publicly cheered the International Atomic Energy Agency's vote to find Iran in violation of nuclear nonproliferation obligations, it is much too early to pop open the Champagne bottles. -IHT - 10/6/05

Bolaghi Gorge and Biggest Salvation Project of Iran's Heritage
Bolaghi Gorge is to be immersed under water once the Sivand Dam is inundated, however, its salvation project, the biggest one in the history of Iran's archaeological activities, has engaged the presence of several archaeological teams from 8 countries and spending of hundreds of thousands dollars. - 10/6/05

IRAN SO FAR AWAY: Tehran rockers 127 make it to America at last
Sohrab Mohebbi is the guitarist and vocalist for 127, Iran’s most popular underground band. But "underground" has a rather different connotation in Tehran than it does here. With rock music only semi-legal, the septet practice in a soundproof bunker on the outskirts of the city. -Boston Phoenix - 10/6/05

Collection of Persian Music in British Library
British library has collected some of the most precious music works of different nations, including Islamic nations and Iran, as part of its program for preserving and collecting nations' cultural documents and musics. - 10/6/05

US societies reverse rules on Iranians
One permanently ends its ban on Iranian authors, another installs a new one for students -Scientist, UK - 10/5/05

A Persian Nocturne for Piano
A Night in a Persian Garden is the name of a Nocturne composed by the Persian (Iranian) contemporary composer Behzad Ranjbaran. This Nocturne, published recently by the Theodore Presser Company in the US, was performed for the first time in 2002 in New York City by the young Persian pianist Soheil Nasseri and has enjoyed many performances by other pianists. -Pejman Akbarzadeh - 10/5/05

Our Kurdish Problem
A three-way civil war, pitting the Kurds against both the Shi'ite south and the Sunni-led insurgency, is a looming possibility, one made more probable by the American (and Israeli) presence, which acts as a spur to Kurdish separatism. This would be but the prelude to a regional struggle that would draw in not only Iran but also Turkey and Syria, which have their restive Kurdish minorities, as well as Jordan and perhaps even the Saudis. -Antiwar - 10/5/05

New San Mateo Public Library Creates Opportunity to Highlight Persian Culture
San Mateo is building a new 90,000 sq.ft library that will be three time larger with enhanced collections and expanded meeting space...This presents a great opportunity to take an immediate and lasting step forward in building a better understanding of the Persian culture within the regional San Francisco Bay Area. - 10/5/05

When I tasted fear
In the latest extract from his new book, The Great War for Civilisation, Robert Fisk describes the terrifying experience of coming under fire during the Battle of Fish Lake, in the Iran-Iraq war -Independent - 10/5/05

Beckenbauer overwhelmed by Iranian football fans' cordial reception
The head of the World Cup Organizing Committee Franz Beckenbauer said he was deeply touched by the warm welcome of Iranian football fans during his recent blitz visit to Tehran. "Everyone wanted to shake hands with me or touch me. It felt like being a popstar," Beckenbauer told the daily Bild on Tuesday. - 10/5/05

Iran stands second at world Alish meet
Iran ranked second at the world men's and women's Alish competitions in Kazan, Russia, Tuesday. - 10/5/05

A Lesson from Roman History: An Earlier Empire's War on Iraq
The Roman emperor Trajan reigned from 98 to 117 and brought the empire to its maximum extent. He is generally considered to be one of the “good emperors” who ruled from 96 to 180, and indeed his administration was marked by relative tolerance (towards Christians, for example) and efficiency. Among his mistakes, however, was an attack on the Parthian Empire beginning in 115 or 116. -CounterPunch - 10/5/05

America Concedes!
It would seem that the visit by the Knesset members has lit a fire under the Bush administration. In a recent visit by a delegation of Israel's right-wing National Union Party, the United States was put on notice to do something about Iran’s nuclear program or else… [1] George W. Bush listened. -Soraya Sepahpour-Ulrich - 10/5/05

Bahrain's King happy with positive trend in Iran ties
At a meeting with the visiting Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki, the King conveyed his warm greetings to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and wished progress for the Iranian government and nation. - 10/5/05

Iran-Saudi conference 'postponed'
Talks between Iranian and Saudi Arabian officials have reportedly been postponed, days after the Saudis voiced concern about Iran's influence in Iraq. -BBC - 10/5/05

Celebrities Join London Protest Against Iran Gay Executions and Torture
TV soap and film actor Jeremy Sheffield, gay rap star Q Boy, comedian Scott Cappurro, Big Brother contestant Josh Rafter, out gay Labour MP Chris Bryant and human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell today joined a 50-strong protest outside the Iranian Embassy in London. -UK Gay News - 10/5/05

Iran 'behind attacks on British'
Britain has accused Iran of responsibility for explosions which have killed eight British soldiers in Iraq this year. -BBC - 10/5/05

New Video Game Simulates U.S. Attack On Iranian Nuclear Facilities
"Reality Game" maker Kuma Reality Games has released a stunning 3-D video game simulation of what a U.S. attack on Iranian nuclear facilities might look like. -Business Wire - 10/5/05

Iran achieves self-sufficiency in corn production sooner than schedule
Corn production averaged 128,000 tons/year in the 1982-1991 period, reaching 1,930,000 tons last year, said Zabihi, adding that the figure is expected to reach 2,200,000 tons this year. - 10/5/05

Iran star scoffs at cultural ban
Iranian international Ali Karimi has dismissed threats players with long hair and western-style clothes may be banned from the national team. "If the federation invites me the way I am, then I would be more than pleased to come and give everything for my national team. If not, then I wont," said the Bayern Munich midfielder in Teheran. -Advertiser - 10/5/05

Pakistan, India renew commitment to Iran gas pipeline
Pakistan and India have renewed their commitment to the multi-billion Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline and observed that the project is a key to regional development. - 10/5/05

Isfahan's Hunting Grounds under Foreign Steps
Isfahan's hunting grounds are the only region in Iran in which the hunting permit is just issued for foreigners. Isfahan province enjoys 2 protected areas and a national park, with a variety of plants and animals. - 10/5/05

Iran: Female Gambler Skeleton Comes out of Grave
Archaeologists excavating the ancient cemetery of Gohar Tepe of Mazandaran, north of Iran, discovered some 600 pieces of bone used in a gambling game inside the tomb of a woman. - 10/5/05

National Legal Sanctuary for Community Advancement's President and CEO Banafsheh Akhlaghi among "Top 100 Influential Lawyers"
The National Legal Sanctuary for Community Advancement (NLSCA) would like to warmly congratulate its President and CEO, Banafsheh Akhlaghi, for being recognized by the Daily Journal as "Top 100 Influential Lawyers" in California for 2005. - 10/4/05

Iran: Systemic Changes Could Weaken Elected Officials, Balance Government
The formal decision-making apparatus in the Iranian government has undergone a significant change in the last few days. This change, which gives the unelected Expediency Council supervisory powers over the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of government, has been met with criticism from members of parliament. - 10/4/05

Iranian director Abolfazl Jalili elected as head of jurors in Japan's International FILMeX Festival
Renowned Iranian documentary director Abolfazl Jalili was elected here Monday as Head of the Board of Jurors of Japan's 6th International FILMeX Festival. The internationally renowned FILMeX Festival is scheduled to be held in Japan's capital city Tokyo from 19th to 27th of November, 2005. - 10/4/05

EU wants diplomatic solution to Iran's nuclear program
The European Union's Council of Foreign Ministers has reaffirmed its support for a diplomatic solution to the Iran nuclear issue. The Council meeting in Luxembourg, in a statement issued Monday afternoon, said the EU wants to resume talks with Iran on the basis of the Paris Agreement. - 10/4/05

Pascal Lami: World Trade Organization will support Iran membership
The New Director General of World Trade Organization (WTO) Pascal Lami said in Geneva Monday "My colleagues and I will do our best to facilitate Iran's membership talks to the world trade body." - 10/4/05

Spain calls for resumption of Iran-Europe nuclear talks
Spain's Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs Bernardino Leon said in Madrid on Monday his country calls for a resumption of nuclear talks between Iran and the European Union and believes any attempt to hinder such negotiations should be thwarted. - 10/4/05

The Axis of Evil: From Rhetoric to Reality
By grouping Iran, Iraq, and North Korea together, Bush's policies targeting them have driven the countries into each others' arms -Business Week - 10/4/05

Monitors Find Significant Fraud in Afghan Elections
Election officials and observers said Sunday that with 80 percent of the ballots counted in Afghanistan's national and provincial elections, they had found significant incidents of fraud. -NYT - 10/4/05

U.S. Presses Russia to Halt Trade In Nuclear Technology With Iran
The Bush administration Monday tried to increase pressure on Russia to halt the supply of nuclear energy technology to Iran, citing a recent finding by a U.N. board that Tehran is in violation of its commitment to disclose its nuclear activities. -Washington Post - 10/4/05

Indian vote against Iran irks Kashmiris
Sympathy for Iran and anger at the Indian vote against Iran at the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) have cut across the Shia-Sunni divide in Jammu and Kashmir. -Hindustan Times - 10/4/05

Iranian Foreign Minister: Tehran views expansion of ties with Kuwait as important
Visiting Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said in Kuwait on Monday that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's government views expansion of ties with Kuwait as "important." - 10/4/05

MTN readies 270 mln euros for Iran mobile licence
South Africa's MTN has made 270 million euros available to pay for a mobile telephone network operating licence in Iran, Iranian officials said on Tuesday. The contract to act as foreign operator in the Irancell consortium, a $2-billion investment project that seeks to run Iran's second private GSM standard network, was originally awarded to Turkcell last year. -Reuters - 10/4/05

AMERICA’S OIL WARS: Authors offer different views of what led the U.S. to invade Iraq
In America’s Oil Wars, former CIA analyst and U.S. Army War College professor Stephen Pelletière analyzes the United States’ recent wars in Iraq in the context of U.S. policy in the Middle East since the 1950s. -National Catholic Reporter - 10/4/05

Bearing 270 Degrees: Novel by Ahmad Dehqan on Iran-Iraq war translated into English
"Bearing 270 Degrees", a novel by Ahmad Dehqan on Iran-Iraq war has been translated into English and will be published soon in the US. - 10/4/05

Official: Iran could run out of oil reserves in 9 decades
Speaking at a gathering dubbed "Iran in the 21th century: Energy and Security" in Madrid on Monday, he cited latest figures which put Iran's crude oil reserves at 137 billion barrels, accounting for 11.6 percent of the world's total reserves. - 10/4/05

FM Spokesman: Iran ready to continue talks with Europeans
Tehran on Tuesday ruled out any pre-condition or pressure for continuation of talks with the European states and reiterated it was to keep on negotiating to find a solution to the Iran nuclear issue. - 10/4/05

An interview with Rakhshan Bani-Etemad, co-director of Gilaneh
Joanne Laurier and David Walsh spoke to Rakhshan Bani-Etemad in Toronto. - 10/4/05

Iranian lawmaker: 100 billion dollars investment expected in oil sector
Dlrs 100 billion is expected to be invested in the oil sector, including dlrs 50 billion during the Fourth Five-Year Economic Development Plan (2005-10), said an Iranian lawmaker in Tehran on Monday. - 10/4/05

Assistant Secretary DeSutter: Iran 'Missed Opportunity to be Constructive' at UN
Paula A. DeSutter, the U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Verification and Compliance, told the Voice of America (VOA) today that Iran "missed a good opportunity to be constructive" last month when Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad addressed the United Nations on Iran's nuclear program. - 10/4/05

Rostam Super Hero: Popularizing A Persian Myth...
I had the opportunity to read a Comic Book in English based on the Persian legendary hero Rostam, and was delighted by what I discovered as a bold and successful attempt to render Ferdowsi’s legendary script into a visually stunning story accessible to every age group. -Darius Kadivar - 10/4/05

The Iranian American Bar Association Launches Campaign to Establish a Chapter in San Francisco
We are pleased to announce the launch of a local chapter in the Bay Area of California. IABA will hold an organizational meeting on October 11, at 7 PM, at the offices of National Legal Sanctuary for Community Advancement (“NLSCA”), 444 De Haro Street, Suite 205, San Francisco. - 10/3/05

48 Hours in Tehran
It might not be an obvious destination, but the Iranian capital is the heart of Persian civilisation and has plenty of treasures to discover. Andrew Burke of the Independent writes in 48 hours in Tehran in association with Emirates. - 10/3/05

Iranian musicians try to hit the right note
A conductor voices the hopes of many in a call from his concert podium for less politics in music. -CSM - 10/3/05

Think Tank Issues Two-Year Iraq Exit Plan
At the same time, the plan, co-authored by CAP associates Lawrence Korb and Brian Katulis, calls for Washington to enlist regional states, including Iraq's next-door neighbours, in a major diplomatic initiative to ensure Iraq's stability. Such an initiative should include both Syria and Iran, both of which are considered by the George W. Bush administration to be high-priority targets for "regime change". -IPS - 10/3/05

Iraqi minister hits out at Saudi
Iraq's interior minister has hit out at Saudi Arabian suggestions that Iran is wielding ever-greater influence in Shia-dominated Iraq. -BBC - 10/3/05

Fueling Azerbaijan's Future: Mushy Fruit Has a Meaning For Azerbaijani Democracy
As Azerbaijan prepares for a Nov. 6 parliamentary election, a test of the country's progress toward democracy, a new road is at the top of the wish list for residents of Gunahir. -Washington Post - 10/3/05

Iranian Dissident Sentenced To Five Years In Prison
A revolutionary court in Tehran has sentenced Mohsen Sazgara, a liberal political dissident, in abstentia to five years in prison on charges of trying to topple the Islamic system. -AP - 10/3/05

The Greatest Strategic Disaster in US History
Capitol Hill Blue, the Washington, D.C., publication that cultivates relationships with White House staffers, reports one White House aide saying, "It's like working in an insane asylum. People walk around like they're in a trance. We're the dance band on the Titanic, playing out our last songs to people who know the ship is sinking and none of us are going to make it." -Antiwar - 10/3/05

Spain Accepts Iran's Conditions, Welcomes Forgotten Empire
Spain has accepted Iran's conditions for transferring the collection now displayed in British Museum "Forgotten Empire: the World of Ancient Persia" exhibition there. - 10/3/05

Moving Iran towards Democracy: Renowned Iranian-American Scholar Discusses Options
In a program held by Bay Area Iranian-American Democrats, Reza Aslan, author of No god but God, argued that the U.S. has “miserably failed” in its strategy to deal with Iran’s clerical regime. According to Aslan, the U.S. method of sanctioning and isolating Iran has in fact made “the clerical regime stronger and the democratic opposition weaker”. - 10/3/05

Iran stands 10th at 2005 world men's Greco-Roman wrestling
Iran restored some prestige in the 49th edition of world Greco-Roman bouts by bagging two colorful medals. - 10/3/05

Recycling program in Shiraz
During my recent trip to Shiraz, as I was stepping out of the car that was transporting me from the airport, I noticed a new recycling van, driven by ladies, near the house of our friends. It was colorful, and the ladies were polite and like most Shirazi people! - 10/3/05

Iranian Official: Ban on beluga trade not to help revive Caspian reserves
The ban on the Caspian caviar trade will provide no help in reviving the sea's sturgeon reserves, said an Iranian official in Bandar Anzali on Sunday. - 10/2/05

World Cup Committee's Beckenbauer arrives in Iran
The head of the FIFA 2006 World Cup Organizing Committee, Franz Beckenbauer, arrived in Tehran today on the start of a `Welcome Tour'. - 10/2/05

Lecturer: Cultures of Oklahoma, Iran really not worlds apart
The cultures of Iran and Oklahoma might seem worlds apart, but for Paymaneh Maghsoudi their similarities were more appealing than their differences when she chose to attend graduate school in the United States back in 1978. -Whittier Daily News - 10/2/05

European Parliament supportive of Indo-Iran pipeline
The European Parliament (EP) has expressed support for a gas pipeline between Iran and India through Pakistan, saying the project will encourage regional stability. - 10/2/05

Toasting Shakespeare in Armenia
William Shakespeare may have been born in the English town of Stratford-on-Avon but, as the actor Gareth Armstrong discovered at a theatre festival in Armenia, some literary giants belong to the world. -BBC - 10/2/05

Iran: Parliament commission does not reach consensus on suspending Additional Protocol to NPT
Majlis (Parliament) Special Commission on National Security and Foreign Policy on Sunday debated a bill on suspending Additional Protocol to Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and did not reach consensus for legal considerations. - 10/2/05

Iranian Paper calls for major judicial sentencing reforms
An Iranian newspaper commented here Sunday on the country's judicial system calling for major sentencing reforms in the field. The editorial added "The official capacity of prisons in Iran is 80,000 but the actual number of prisoners in the country is double the capacity." - 10/2/05

Parliament Speaker: Iran will give unforgettable lesson to Israel if it ventures into targeting nuclear sites
If Israel goes mad enough to target Iranian nuclear sites as it did against Iraqi installations in 1991, Iran would give it a lesson which it could not forget forever, Iranian Majlis Speaker Gholamali Haddad Adel said in Damascus on Sunday. - 10/2/05

Debutant Iran stands second at West Asian women's football tournament
Iran made debut in the West Asian Women's Football Championships and finished runner-up to host country Jordan Saturday night. The Iranian side conceded a 2-1 loss in a tough final. - 10/2/05

Beckenbauer kicks off World Cup Welcome Tour with Iran visit
The head of the Frankfurt-based World Cup Organizing Committee Franz Beckenbauer will open his four-nation 2006 FIFA World Cup 'Welcome Tour' with a visit to Iran followed by Saudi Arabia, South Korea, and Japan. - 10/1/05

Iran stands fourth at Asian Weightlifting Championships
Iran finished fourth at the 37th Asian Senior Men's Weightlifting Championships in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates, Friday. The world and Olympic +105 kg record holder Hossein Rezazadeh from Iran stole the show on the final day at the Al Wasl Club's Rashid Bin Hamdan Indoor Sports Hall. - 10/1/05

Iran: Paramilitary Force Prepares For Urban Unrest
The Basij Resistance Force, a paramilitary organization connected with the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps, appears to be undergoing something of a revival under the administration of President Mahmud Ahmadinejad. - 10/1/05

Bush Is Cooking Up Two More Wars
Mired in interminable conflict in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Bush administration is moving toward initiating two more wars, one with Iran and one with North Korea. With no US troops available, the Bush administration is revamping US war doctrine to allow for "preventative nuclear attack." -Antiwar - 10/1/05

Foreign Investment In Iran Reached 5 Billion Dollars Last Year
Iran attracted the equivalent of nearly Dlrs 5 billion worth of foreign investment in 2004, according to the latest World Investment Report by the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). - 10/1/05

Shirin Neshat: Women without Men and Other Works
Shirin Neshat, an Iranian-American artist based in New York, is one of the most significant contemporary artists working today. -Absolute Arts - 10/1/05

Israelis urge U.S. to stop Iran's nuke goals
The United States and its allies must act to stop Iran's nuclear programs -- by force if necessary -- because conventional diplomacy will not work, three senior Israeli lawmakers from across the political spectrum warned yesterday. -Washington Times - 10/1/05

Iran to host 2006 World Freestyle Wrestling Championships
The world wrestling's governing body FILA Friday announced that Iran would host the 2006 World Freestyle Wrestling Championships, reported the English-language daily Tehran Times in its Saturday's edition. - 10/1/05

Threat to withhold Iran oil sales
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has threatened to withhold oil sales if Tehran is referred to the UN Security Council over its nuclear activities. -BBC - 10/1/05

US Delays Decision on Religion Sanctions on Saudi Arabia
The Bush administration has put off for six months a decision on whether to sanction Saudi Arabia for violations of religious freedom. The key U.S. ally was cited as a country of particular concern on the issue in a State Department report a year ago. - 10/1/05

From Persia to Memphis
Esfandiar Mirghahari, or S.C. as he is called, has opened Caspian, the first Persian restaurant in Memphis. Caspian offers foods from Mirghahari's birthplace of Iran, which was the center of power for the Persian Empire dating back to the sixth century B.C. -Memphis Flyer - 10/1/05

In Conservation Effort, U.S. Bans Caspian Beluga Caviar
The United States Fish and Wildlife Service announced Thursday that it would ban the import of caviar from beluga sturgeon in the Caspian Sea, after caviar-exporting countries in the region failed to provide details of their plans to conserve the fish. -NY Times - 10/1/05

US-Israeli Diplomatic Triumph Over Iran
Last week the United States bullied, blackmailed and/or intimidated members of the Board of Governors of the International Atomic Energy Agency into passing a Resolution that, among other things: "Finds that Iran's many failures and breaches of its obligations to comply with its NPT Safeguards Agreement, as detailed in GOV/2003/75, constitute "non compliance" in the context of Article XII.C of the Agency's Statute." -Antiwar - 10/1/05

Noam Chomsky: Terror is not a high priority in the world
The four major crises facing the world, Chomsky said, are: nuclear war, environmental disaster, the indifference of the superpowers to the first two problems, and the failure of the superpowers to make amends for past mistakes. But Chomsky spent most of his 90-minute speech and hour-long question-and-answer session on Iraq, Iran and the War on Terror. -Tufts Daily - 10/1/05

Iranian wrestler Hamid Sourian wins world Greco-Roman gold
Iran's wonderkid Hamid Sourian grabbed the 55 kg glittering gold of the 2005 World Men's Greco-Roman Wrestling Championship in Budapest on Friday - 10/1/05

Objectives of Women Islamic Games Met, American Coach
"The twelve-member American Frisbee team could not obtain visas to enter Iran from Istanbul," said Sarah Hillyer, coach of the American team in the 4th Islamic Women Games, who is an active member of Global Sports Partners; - 10/1/05
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