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Portrait of an Iranian-American: Bay Area Artist, Farrin Rahimi
Farrin Rahimi was born in Uromieh in Azerbaijan province of Iran. She moved to U.S. in 1985 where she has lived ever since. She studied Art at San Jose State University and earned her BFA in Pictorial Art in 1997. - 7/31/08

Who Cares About Green Issues in Iran?
Environmental campaigners in Iran are deeply pessimistic about the authorities' commitment to protecting natural habitats. But some hope is offered by grassroots initiatives where local communities have taken it upon themselves to look after wildlife. -Adel Andalibi, Tehran - 7/31/08

The Risk of a US-Iran Proxy War
NIAC held a briefing yesterday on Capitol Hill to shed light on the risk of a possible proxy war between the USA and Iran through various sectarian and political groups in Iran and Iraq, including the Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK). The event featured Col. Sam Gardiner (Ret.), an expert on strategy and military organizations. -Julia Murray - 7/31/08

IAS Calls For Immediate Release Of Iranian Doctors
The International AIDS Society (IAS) today expressed grave concern over the detention without charges of Doctors Kamiar Alaei and Arash Alaei, two internationally respected Iranian physicians, since their arrest by security forces at the end of June 2008. - 7/31/08

Iran FM Rejects Deadline for Nuclear Incentive Package
Iran has signaled it does not intend to meet the latest deadline in ongoing negotiations with world powers over its controversial nuclear program. -VOA - 7/31/08

Iran basketball defeats Serbia
Iran's national basketball team has managed to defeat five-time world champion Serbia in its second match in China's Diamond Cup. -Press TV - 7/31/08

FM: NAM meeting foils wrong impressions about Iran
The participating delegates from NAM's 118 member states voiced their support for Iran's peaceful nuclear program in a document released at the end of their 15th ministerial meeting in Tehran. - 7/31/08

Worrying situation for Afghans in Iran
Most Afghans living in Iran for years - some for decades - do not intend to go back home. While Afghans continue seeking refuge in Iran, the country is organising forced returns back to Afghanistan. -Médecins Sans Frontičres - 7/31/08

Bush Dissenter: 'Don't Start a War With Iran'
In a roundtable Tuesday, Adm. William "Fox" Fallon, the former commander of U.S. forces in the Middle East ousted for dissenting from the Bush administration's bellicose posture toward Iran, gave a rare public elaboration of his view of multilateral cooperation for security in the region. -Washington Independent - 7/31/08

While our scientists struggle with ethics, the Islamic world forges ahead
Stem cell researchers are branded by the Catholic church as playing God, but Iran's geneticists are unhindered by doctrine -Guardian - 7/31/08

NAM calls for creation of Palestinian state
On the final day of its gathering in Tehran, the 118-member movement in a statement said the United Nations should stop Israel's genocide in the occupied territories in a reference to the UN resolutions supporting the Palestinian cause. - 7/31/08

Iran defeats Japan in Asian Youth Handball
In its second game in the quarter final game of competition, Iran's National Youth Handball team beat Japan 41-31 in the 11th Asian Youth Handball Games in Amman, capital of Jordan. -IRNA - 7/31/08

Is the Surge Working? No, but the propaganda touting it sure is
Barack Obama is getting plenty of flak for not acknowledging that he was wrong about the "surge," i.e. the wisdom of escalating a war we should never have started in the first place – and this is being compared to John McCain's stubborn refusal to admit that we need to get out -Justin Raimondo, Antiwar - 7/31/08

Germany Permits SPG Steiner to Build Three Gas Plants in Iran
Germany, one of six nations leading efforts to press the Iranian government to stop uranium enrichment, gave the go ahead for engineering company SPG Steiner-Prematechnik-Gastec GmbH to build three liquefied natural gas plants in Iran. -Bloomberg - 7/31/08

Drastic surgery for Iran’s gay men
If you are a man who wants to become a woman, then the Islamic Republic of Iran can help." This extraordinary proposal comes from the publicity material for a play about to be premiered at the Edinburgh Festival. -First Post - 7/31/08

Iran wheat imports help bolster sagging market
Iran has emerged as an unexpected importer of wheat this year due to drought, providing a market for a bumper world wheat crop that has sent prices plummeting by 40 percent in recent months. -Reuters - 7/31/08

Perle Linked to Kurdish Oil Plan
Influential former Pentagon official Richard Perle has been exploring going into the oil business in Iraq and Kazakhstan, according to people with knowledge of the matter and documents outlining possible deals. -WSJ - 7/31/08

Supreme Leader: Iranians determined to follow up their clear path
Recalling bullying and ambitious nature of the world arrogance, Ayatollah Khamenei said, "Backing down one step in the face of the arrogance will encourage it to come one step forward. The idea, that retreatment and giving up right stances and words will make the arrogance change its policy, is totally wrong and baseless." - 7/30/08

Rice Urges Iran to Accept Incentives Package
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice Tuesday urged Iran to prove its interest in better relations by accepting the big-power offer of incentives for Tehran to stop uranium enrichment. Rice was responding to interview remarks by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad that Iran wants to seek "common ground" with Washington on the nuclear issue. -VOA - 7/30/08

Reed's Rejali wins 2007 Human Rights Book Award for Torture and Democracy
Reed College professor of political science Darius Rejali will soon add the 2007 Human Rights Book Award to his list of accolades for Torture and Democracy, Torture and Democracy is an unrelenting examination of the use of torture by democracies in the 20th century. - 7/30/08

Acts of War
The war between the United States and Iran is on. American taxpayer dollars are being used, with the permission of Congress, to fund activities which result in Iranians being killed and wounded, and Iranian property destroyed. This wanton violation of a nation’s sovereignty would not be tolerated if the tables were turned and Americans were being subjected to Iranian-funded covert actions which took the lives of Americans, on American soil, and destroyed American property and livelihood. -Scott Ritter, TruthDig - 7/30/08

GOP Congressman Urges More Dialogue with Iran
Rep. Walter Jones, R-NC, in an interview with the Voice of America (VOA) today, said the United States should engage in a "diplomatic surge" with Iran to help find common ground between Americans and Iranians.-VOA - 7/30/08

Basketball: Argentina beats Iran 81-71
The national Iranian basketball team has lost its first match 81-71 to Olympic champion Argentina in the Diamond Cup opener in China. -Press TV - 7/30/08

Prominent American Lawyer: 'Iran should sue US for war threats'
A US lawyer says Iran should seek an 'international equivalent of a temporary restraining order' to compel the US to abandon war threats. Francis Boyle, a Professor of International Law at the University of Illinois, proposes Iran sue world powers for threatening to launch military strikes against the country over its nuclear program. - 7/30/08

Iran's Khatami Warned About Possible Run For President
In a commentary on July 28, one of the most influential conservative newspapers in Tehran said that former Iranian President Mohammad Khatami would face serious obstacles if he decides to seek the presidency in next year's election. -RFE - 7/30/08

Batfink is an animated television series, consisting of five-minute shorts, that first aired in September 1967. The 100-episode series was quickly created by Hal Seeger, starting in 1966, to parody the popular Batman and The Green Hornet television series which had premiered the same year. -Darius KADIVAR - 7/30/08

Book: China and Iran: Ancient Partners in a Post-Imperial World
With China and Iran: Ancient Partners in a Post-Imperial World, John Garver breaks new ground on the relationship between the People's Republic of China and the Islamic Republic of Iran. Grounding his survey in the twin concepts of civilization and power, Garver explores the relationship between these two ancient and proud peoples, each of which consider the other a peer and a partner in their mutual determination to build a post-Western-dominated Asia. - 7/30/08

Iran wrestlers bag 3 medals in Turkey
Iran has snatched two silver medals and one bronze at the 23rd Junior World Greco-Roman Wrestling Championships in Istanbul, Turkey. The Iranian wrestling outfit currently stands in third place with 27 points. Kazakhstan leads the table with 31 points followed by Turkey which has 28 points. -Press TV - 7/30/08

European Union condemns execution of 29 people in Evin prison in Iran
The European Union condemns in the strongest terms the 29 simultaneous executions which took place in Evin prison, Iran, on Sunday 27 July 2008. - 7/30/08

We lie and bluster about our nukes - and then wag our fingers at Iran
By failing to disarm and breaking the rules when it suits, nuclear states are driving proliferation as much as Ahmadinejad -Guardian - 7/30/08

Global Trade Talks Collapse In Acrimony
After seven years of effort, international negotiations aimed at liberalizing global trade have collapsed in Geneva, with industrialized nations and developing countries blaming each other for the failure. -RFE - 7/30/08

Revisiting the “Axis of Evil” – Part I
Given the catastrophic consequences of attacking Iran, the US may have to live with an Iranian nuclear program -Dilip Hiro, Yale Global - 7/30/08

Charlton Athletic to respond to any FIFA probe about cancelled Iran game
London football team Charlton Athletic has again denied boycotting a match against Iran's national side for political reasons, but said it will respond to any probe initiated by FIFA. -IRNA - 7/30/08

Higher economic growth predicted for Iran this year
High oil income makes for higher levels of consumption and investment. The UK-based Economist Intelligence Unit has forecast Iran's economic growth to rise from 6.2% last year to 6.5% in the current year. -Press TV - 7/30/08

Hercules is not a Greek myth
Citius and Altius are wonderful to witness at any Olympics, but the magnificent Fortius that was Rezazadeh in Athens demonstrated an important truth: for one night, at least, Hercules was not merely a Greek myth. -DAVE STUBBS, The Gazette - 7/29/08

PAAIA's Frist Community Event in DC
On Thursday July 17th, the Arts Club of Washington was buzzing with Iranian American pride. The Public Affairs Alliance of Iranian Americans (PAAIA) held its first local community event, introducing the newly formed organization to over 90 Iranian Americans eager to learn about PAAIA, and its ambitious Community, Image, and Influence Building plans. - 7/29/08

Families of MKO members protest in front of British Embassy in Tehran
Families of members of the terrorist Mojahedin Khalq Organization (MKO) gathered in front of the British Embassy in Tehran on Monday to protest London's recent decision about the notorious organization. London has recently removed the terrorist organization from the Britain's terror list. - 7/29/08

15th NAM ministerial meeting opens in Tehran
The 15th meeting of Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) foreign ministers opened on Tuesday morning with inaugural speech of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The 118 member states, 15 observer members, and eight international and regional organizations are attending the meeting. - 7/29/08

What 's Motivating Shift in US-Iran Policy?
Iran and the United States have been going through what might be described as diplomatic mood swings. One minute, it seems as if the two countries are on the brink of war. The next, there seem to be small but perceptible policy shifts towards each other. -VOA - 7/29/08

Iranian students shine in Physics Olympiad
Iranian students bagged five bronze medals in the 39th International Physics Olympiad in Vietnam. The students include Mehran Ebrahimian, Sina Aqa-Mohammadi, Jamshid Rezaie Mianroudi, Amir-Abbas Salar-Kia and Amir Najafi. - 7/29/08

Iran: Journalist and women's rights defender Mahboubeh Karami in Evin prison
Mahboubeh Karami has been held in Evin Prison in Tehran since 13 June. Bail of 1,000 billion rials (approximately US$110,000) was set on 12 July, but her family have been unable to raise such a large amount. -Amnesty International - 7/29/08

Iran studying changes in rial currency due to rampant inflation
Iran is mulling over a plan to knock three zeros off the national currency rial as inflation soars above 26 percent in the country. -Press TV - 7/29/08

U.S. sent envoy to Geneva talks to avoid pressure: Chomsky
"The Bush administration is under severe international and domestic pressure to rein in its radical extremism, which has led to catastrophes everywhere, and might bring about even worse ones" the American lecturer noted. - 7/29/08

Book: Great Britain and Reza Shah: The Plunder of Iran, 1921-1941
Using recently declassified U.S. State Department archives, Mohammad Gholi Majd describes the rampant tyranny and destruction of Iran in the decades between the two world wars in a sensational yet thoroughly scholarly study that will rewrite the political and economic history of the country. - 7/29/08

US Awaits Definitive Iranian Response on Nuclear Offer
The State Department says the United States is awaiting a definitive Iranian reply to the offer of incentives for it to halt uranium enrichment. Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, in a U.S. television interview, called for talks based on an Iranian statement submitted in Geneva earlier this month. -VOA - 7/29/08

Arsonists in Iran target Baha'i homes, vehicles
Acts of arson targeting homes and vehicles are the latest violent tactics directed against the Baha'is of Iran. -BWNS - 7/29/08

Iran to Introduce 200 Luminaries to UNESCO
The Research Center of Iran's Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts, and Tourism Organization (ICHHTO) is to introduce 200 luminaries as Iranian nationalities to UNESCO. -CHN - 7/29/08

Iran Human Rights Violations Continue – New Cases of Stoning and Arrests
New developments in Iran's foreign policy have yet again allowed its human rights violations to go widely unreported. As of July 15, the BBC had reported Iran plans to stone "at least" eight women and one man for various sex crimes, ranging from adultery to incest and prostitution. -Arash Hadjialiloo - 7/29/08

Call on AP to retract false reporting on Iran
On July 25, the Associated Press published a report by journalist George Jahn titled "Iran ends cooperation with UN nuclear arms probe". [1] The story claimed to be based on comments by Gholamreza Aghazadeh, the head of Iran's Atomic Energy Organisation in a press conference after meeting with the Director General of the IAEA, Mohamed Elbaradei. -CASMII - 7/29/08

Benevolent British Empire
Throughout this past year, the daily political staple of the major U.S. and British governmental organs and their related establishments in the main stream media have been the talks about the drastic security improvements in Iraq and the reduction of violence and in the number of attacks against the British and American troops. -Ardeshir Ommani - 7/29/08

This week, a global bid to connect Muslims and Christians
Top-tier religious leaders in the Muslim world are emerging as major proponents of dialogue with Christians and other world faiths. With two distinct initiatives this month, they are breaking new ground and sending signals to Muslims and others globally that interreligious understanding and joint action are Islamic values. -CSM - 7/29/08

Dispelling Myths and Making New Friends U.S. Iranian Table Tennis Friendship Tour
"We place sports as a bridge among our hearts for friendship with the U.S." - Shahrokh Shahnazi, President, Iran Table Tennis Federation - 7/28/08

Photos: Margoon Waterfall in Fars, Iran
Margoon (Margun) Waterfall is located in the Fars province of Iran near the city of Sepidan. Its name means in Persian "snake like". - 7/28/08

Females rank first in Iran's university entrance exam
Comprising 55% of Iranian University Entrance Exam top passers, females ranked first in the academic year of 1387-88 (2008-2009). 20 out of 36 top successful qualifiers in five fields of mathematics, natural sciences, humanities, arts, and foreign languages, were females. - 7/28/08

IRGC Reshuffling Aimed at Boosting Political Role
Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), the independent elite military force, has recently undergone a major transformation in its command authority with the apparent aim of boosting its political role in Iran. -Babak Rahimi, NIAC - 7/28/08

Bombs Rock Istanbul As Court Deliberates On Ruling Party
The death toll from the July 27 double bombing in Istanbul rose to 17 today as more injured victims died in the hospital. The blasts were on the eve of deliberations in a court case that will determine the future of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's Justice and Development Party (AKP). -RFE - 7/28/08

Iran to highlight Rudaki
Tehran is holding an international conference in commemorating the 1150th anniversary of the birth of Rudaki in October. - 7/28/08

Iran's Stars, Erased From the Billboards
Iranian weightlifter Hossein Rezazadeh might be the strongest man in the world, but forces more powerful than his mighty arms prevent the two-time Olympic champion from exploiting his strength on billboards and in TV commercials. -Washington Post - 7/28/08

Drawing a red line with Iran
The Bush administration's decision to open direct contacts with Iran is to be welcomed, but precisely because it marks such a break with previous U.S. policy, it also carries a great danger. This is that hard-liners in the American and Israeli governments will treat this Western proposal as a last chance for the Iranians, to be followed by an attack if Tehran fails to accept it. -Anatol Lieven and Trita Parsi, IHT - 7/28/08

Larijani: Pre-emptive measures a theory of modern savagery
Iran's Majlis Speaker Ali Larijani said on Monday that the theory of pre-emptive measures which has been raised by US is now regarded as 'modern savagery'. -IRNA - 7/28/08

650 Million Euro Investment For Persian Gulf Bridge
The Persian Gulf Bridge project will most probably be financed and implemented by a consortium of Iranian and foreign companies, Qeshm Free Trade Zone Manager Mohammad Asghari said in Qeshm on Sunday. - 7/28/08

Turkey Strikes Kurdish Bases in Northern Iraq
The Turkish air force launched a series of air strikes Saturday and early Sunday against bases of the Kurdistan Workers Party in northern Iraq. Dorian Jones reports for VOA from Istanbul Turkish forces are intensifying their operations against the PKK rebels. - 7/28/08

Iran LNG Company ready to replace Total in Pars LNG project
"In case Total and Shell Companies pull out of Pars and Persian LNG projects, we are prepared to implement the projects," Ali Kheirandish explained while saying that Iran LNG Company has even developed a timetable and carried out preliminary studies months ago. -MNA - 7/28/08

FM asks NAM to back Iran's bid for Security Council seat
Iranian Foreign Minister Manuchehr Mottaki has asked the members of the Non-Aligned Movement to back Iran's bid for a UN Security Council seat in the upcoming vote at the United Nations. -MNA - 7/28/08

Berwyn Man charged in case of counterespionage and Iran Sanction violations
Acting United States Attorney Laurie Magid today announced the unsealing of an indictment (1) charging Ali Amirnazmi with numerous crimes relating to his participation in illegal business transactions with Iran between in or about 1996 and in or about July 2008 and lying to federal officials about those transactions. - 7/28/08

Tirgan Pleased and Entertained Despite some Adversity
Audiences were treated to a plethora of colourful music, exuberant dancing, eclectic food and thoughtful art this past weekend as the Tirgan festival hit Toronto's Harbourfront Centre. Based on what we saw, the festival was very successful. -Azim Ahmed, Salam Toronto - 7/26/08

US Warns Iran Time Running Out for Nuclear Deal
U.S. officials are warning Iran that time is running out for Tehran to respond to proposals by the EU and the Security Council to resolve the nuclear stand-off. Iran was given two weeks to reply before risking yet another round of sanctions. VOA's Sonja Pace reports from London. - 7/26/08

Iran, UK teams to study Zagros Mountains
Iranian and British archeologists are investigating the economic, cultural and rural life developments in Iran's Zagros Mountains. The team includes botanists and zoologists who will carry out research about urbanism in the Neolithic era in Zagros Mountains for the first time. - 7/26/08

U.S. Reaching Out To Iranians
Despite serious problems with the Iranian government, the United States is determined to reach out to the Iranian people. U.S. State Department Spokesman Sean McCormack said the U.S. is trying to make connections with Iranians in a number of ways -VOA - 7/26/08

Ahmadinejad: Iran Now has Up to 6,000 Centrifuges
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says his nation is now operating as many as 6,000 uranium enriching centrifuges. -VOA - 7/26/08

Avoiding Brinksmanship with Iran
As the 63rd anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki approaches, the world continues to face a litany of nuclear concerns. There is the failure to safeguard all the nuclear material lying loose around the globe. And proponents of nuclear power have gained ground as a result of the current energy crisis. -FPIF - 7/26/08

Will the real Shams stand up?
Khoy Member of Parliament Mo'ayyed Hosseini-Sadr was enraged by the recent claim by the Tabriz City Council, declaring Shams is buried in Tabriz and not in Khoy. - 7/26/08

Obama meets with Iranian-American donors
Democratic candidate Barack Obama held a private session with Iranian-American donors before he started his Mideast tour, a report says. - 7/26/08

German's MRK invests in Iran's Kish infrastructures
Iran's Kish free zone organization and Germany's MRK corporation inked a 500-million Euro investment agreement for infrastructures development in this island. -ISNA - 7/26/08

Traditional Azeri Wedding Leads To Groom's Arrest In Iran
Vedud Asadi is well-known for his work promoting the cultural and language rights of Iran's Azeri minority, so it's little surprise that he celebrated his wedding with a nod to his ethnic heritage. -Khadija Ismaylova, RFE - 7/26/08

Four new cars in Iran Khodro's pipeline
Iran's auto giant, Iran Khodro, plans to design and produce four new types of cars, announced the company's Chief Executive Officer Manouchehr Manteqi. - 7/26/08

If the Iranians Are Confident in Their Chess, They May Accept ‘Freeze for Freeze’
The Bush administration and its European allies have given Iran a two-week deadline to respond to a proposal that they freeze the expansion of their uranium enrichment program for six weeks in exchange for a US agreement to freeze the expansion of sanctions for six weeks. -Huffington Post - 7/26/08

Iran's possible bargain hunt
As Iran refuses to budge on a 'freeze-for-freeze' nuclear agreement, some wonder if its waiting on a new US president to start the thaw. -ISN - 7/26/08

Are You On the Terror Watch List? Good Luck Getting Off It
The TSA's "no fly" terrorism watch list contains between 400,000 and 1,000,000 names. If you're on the list by mistake, good luck getting off of it. -AlterNet - 7/26/08

Sports Exchanges with Iran Build Bridges
Sports exchanges are one tool to help rebuild bridges between U.S. and Iranian societies after 30 years of estrangement, said Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs William Burns at a July 9 House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing on U.S. relations with Iran. - 7/25/08

Sharifi to replace "Hercules" in Olympics
Iranian weightlifter Rashid Sharifi replaces world champion Hossein Rezazadeh to represent his country in the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. - 7/25/08

Democratic senators want US mission in Iran
A group of influential Democratic senators led by John Kerry has called for a 'limited diplomatic presence' of the United States in Iran. -Press TV - 7/25/08

Iran in Latin America: No More than a Nearby Nuisance, for now
Latin American countries are sidling up to a new ally, and they're finding one—in Iran. Last week, panelists in the conference "Iran in Latin America: Threat or Axis of Annoyance?" at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars considered whether these relationships are trivial partnerships of convenience or budding bosom friendships that could threaten U.S. interests. -Negar Mortazavi and Caroline Tarpey, NIAC - 7/25/08

Iranian Peace Cyclists in Irvine, California
The Iranian couple cyclists, Nasim Yousefi and Jafar Edrisi who have set off on a round-the-world cycling trip to promote Peace and Environmental Conservation, have arrived in Southern California this week. - 7/25/08

Eleventh Zarathusti Games held in San Diego
On July 2, 2008 roughly 600 athletes gathered on the campus of the University of San Diego to take part in the 11th Zarathushti Games. What makes this gathering unique is that it brings together a large number of Zoroastrians – members of one of the oldest and first monotheistic religions in the world - 7/25/08

The Boom of Art Market in Iran
The art industry in Tehran has taken off as prices have jumped 20-fold over the past two years, leading some to mull if the spike is just a speculative bubble. -Iran Times - 7/25/08

A 'Culinary' Tour of Iran
You think you’ll find tuna on a bagel in Iran?” my assistant Kathy asked as I shut down my computer for the next three weeks. I laughed. Finding my favorite lunch was the least of my concerns. I was, after all, traveling to a country that President Bush identified as one-third of the Axis of Evil. -Forbes - 7/25/08

Iran, Bohemians FC tie 1-1 in friendly
Iran's national soccer team, in its first friendly match, has been held to a 1-1 draw by Czech Republic's Bohemians 1905 FC in Prague. -Press TV - 7/25/08

The Geopolitics of Iran: Holding the Center of a Mountain Fortress
To understand Iran, you must begin by understanding how large it is. Iran is the 17th largest country in world. It measures 1,684,000 square kilometers. That means that its territory is larger than the combined territories of France, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain and Portugal — Western Europe. -Stratfor - 7/25/08

Isolated Armenia leans on Iran
Iran does not have too many friends these days, but in a far corner of the Caucasus, on the edge of Europe, it is forming a special relationship. -BBC - 7/25/08

Antiwar Radio: David Bromwich discusses Benny Morris's "Using Bombs to Stave Off War"
David Bromwich, Sterling professor of English at Yale University and blogger at the Huffington Post, discusses the op-ed in the New York Times by Benny Morris advocating an American/Israeli attack on Iran, numerous reasons not to attack Iran, the difference between pre-emptive and preventive wars, the constant warmongering of the New York Times... - 7/25/08

India, Pakistan resolve issues on gas pipeline from Iran
India and Pakistan Friday said they have resolved all bilateral commercial issues impeding implementation of the $ 7.4 billion gas pipeline from Iran and will jointly address Tehran's demand for price revision. -IRNA - 7/25/08

Iran: Who runs it?
WHAT does Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran’s supreme leader, really think of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, his bellicose, populist president? After Mr Ahmadinejad was elected in 2005, to the surprise of almost all the pundits, it was widely assumed he would be a meek figurehead. -Economist - 7/25/08

Egypt Raids Iranian TV Bureau, Seizes Gear in Dispute Over Sadat Film
Egyptian police have raided the Cairo office of an Iranian television network involved in a dispute over a controversial film about Anwar Sadat, the Egyptian president assassinated nearly 30 years ago. -VOA - 7/25/08

EU removes ban on Iran's Mahan Airlines
The European Commission (EC) has dropped Iran's Mahan Airlines from its safety blacklist of airlines banned from Eropean Union (EU) skies. -MNA - 7/25/08

Hossein Rezazadeh, aka the Iranian Hercules, bids farewell to contests
Hossein Rezazadeh who during his 15 years of competing at sports scenes gained 14 gold medals for the Iranian nation at world, Asian and Olympic games, and improved the records of the World Weight Lifting several times, is the only sportsman in the history of Iranian sports that won gold medals at two consecutive Olympic Games, namely the Sydney 2000 and the Athens 2004. - 7/24/08

Tehran Debates Breaking Dress Code To Broadcast Women At Olympics
For years, Iranian women have been active in regional and international sports competitions, but religious laws in Iran prevent women from being seen on television without an Islamic hijab. While Iranian women play sports dressed in the traditional hijab, their international competitors do not -- and therefore cannot be shown in Iranian broadcasts. -Farangis Najibullah, RFE - 7/24/08

And the winner is Nosratollah Amini
On Sunday June 29, 2008 we held a ceremony in Reston, VA to honor our Father, Mr. Nosratollah Amini, a dad, a grandfather and a husband, for his 70+ years of public service as a lawyer, a judge, an inspector general, a mayor and personal attorney to Dr. Mohammad Mossadegh. -Mehdi Amini - 7/24/08

Happy Birthday Cafe 78
Five years ago on 28th July 2003, despite all the odds Café 78 was opened by Mehrva Arvin and during this period it has become of the most interesting and talked about central meeting place of artists, good friends, writers and scholars in Tehran. -Syma Sayyah, Tehran - 7/24/08

Anti-War Movement Successfully Pushes Back Against Military Confrontation With Iran
For something that's not supposed to exist, the anti-war movement sure was effective in fighting a recent resolution to blockade Iran. -Alternet - 7/24/08

Hajj Sayyah: The First Iranian American
Mirza Mohammad Ali, better known as Hajj Sayyah (meaning the traveler), was born in 1836 in the town of Mahallat in Iran. His studies exposed him at a young age to modern and democratic ideas that were at the time spreading throughout parts of the world. - 7/24/08

Will Iran Freeze?
Upon his return to Iran from Geneva Iran's chief nuclear negotiator, Saeed Jalili, was quite clear in only one respect. Responding to a question from the Iranian press, he stated that in Geneva there was no discussion of Iran's suspension of uranium enrichment. Jalili is right. The Geneva talks were not supposed to be about suspension. -Farideh Farhi, NIAC - 7/24/08

Will Deal With Iran Be Worked Out?
Gary Sick, a longtime expert on Iran who served as the Iran officer in the National Security Councils of the Ford, Carter, and Reagan administrations, says there is pressure on both the Iranian and U.S. governments to accept a compromise to move negotiations forward on eventually halting Iran’s uranium-enrichment program. -CFR - 7/24/08

Iran's Peykan wins Asian volleyball title
Iran's Peykan volleyball team has clinched the championship at the 19th Asian Men's Club Volleyball Championship in Almaty, Kazakhstan. -Press TV - 7/24/08

Defenders for Freedom, Justice & Equality to protest "warmongering" by Richmond Times Dispatch
The Defenders for Freedom, Justice & Equality are asking you to join us this Saturday, July 26, for an important protest outside the offices of the Richmond Times Dispatch - 1 p.m., 300 W. Franklin St. - 7/24/08

From Iran to Beijing, via son, shot put
It was 1976. Nikfar had come to the United States to pursue a degree in electrical engineering. He was miserable. After three weeks, he bought a ticket to return. Stick it out, a nephew begged. He did, and within six months he had enrolled at San Jose State and fallen in love with an American woman he met while looking for shoes in a secondhand shop. -USA Today - 7/24/08

Italy hosts leader of group recognized internationally as terrorist
Maryam Rajavi, the wife of Masoud Rajavi, leader of Mujahedin Khalq Organization, has arrived in the Italian capital to take part in a press conference. - 7/24/08

US Congressman seeks to blacklist Iran's Press TV
A US lawmaker is seeking to extend a previously-proposed resolution which labels several TV channels as terrorist and include Press TV. - 7/24/08

Another Iranian Bus Drivers Union Leader Arrested
The Solidarity Center joins the global labor movement in expressing deep concern over the arrest of Gholamreza Gholamhosseini, an executive board member of the Sherkat-e Vahed bus drivers union in Tehran. - 7/24/08

Mystery Raid
Federal seizure of local charity’s computers puts Iranian community on edge. -Willamette Week Newspaper - 7/24/08

Iran to get new Russian air defences by '09 -Israel
Iran is set to receive an advanced Russian-made anti-aircraft system by year-end that could help fend off any preemptive strikes against its nuclear facilities, senior Israeli defence sources said on Wednesday. -Reuters - 7/24/08

Iranians seeking life abroad look east to Malaysia
Iran has a large youth population, and has taken measures such as increasing the number of places in domestic universities in a bid to reduce the emigration trend. However, unofficial reports indicate that several hundred thousand undergraduates and graduates are leaving the country each year. -AFP - 7/24/08

Bush 41 Adviser Scowcroft Says He'd Tell Israel To "Calm Down" On Iran Strike
Brent Scowcroft doesn't think the biggest problem with Iran getting a nuclear weapon is, well, Iran getting a nuclear weapon. -Huffington Post - 7/24/08

Iran struggles with power cuts despite energy riches
Daily electricity outages lasting several hours are fraying nerves at the height of Iran's sweltering summer, plunging neighbourhoods into darkness and bringing whirring air conditioners to a sudden halt. -Reuters - 7/24/08

Iran's Diplomatic Channel With U.S. Nothing New
For all the recent publicity surrounding the possibility of Washington and Tehran opening "interests" sections in each others country, the fact is, a diplomatic channel has existed between the two capitals for almost 20 years. -Newsmax - 7/24/08

US-Iran to Engage in "Concrete" Diplomacy
Managing director of Concrete Research Center said in Tehran on Wednesday that head of International Committee as well as official representative of American Concrete Institute (ACI) will visit Iran next week to exchange experiences, review the latest achievements in the concrete industry and hold scientific lectures. - 7/23/08

Kiarostami's Looking at Tazieh at Scotland's Edinburgh International Festival
Tazieh is an ancient Persian theatrical tradition - a form of Shiite passion play, telling epic tales in memory of the martyrdom of Imam Hussein, grandson of the prophet Mohammed. Open-air performances draw huge crowds which themselves become part of the experience and are a rare example of popular drama in the Islamic world. - 7/23/08

Iranian-American youth struggle to define themselves
Camp Ayandeh is sponsored annually by Iranian Alliances Across Borders, a largely volunteer organization funded by individual donors and PARSA, a California-based philanthropic organization. First established on Thompson Island off eastern Massachusetts, Ayandeh began its gradual migration south the second year -- setting up at a campgrounds near Fairfax, Virginia. -CNN - 7/23/08

UNICEF pays tribute to "Mana" production crew
UNICEF paid tribute to the production crew of "Mana" in a ceremony held at Tehran's Honar Cultural Center on Monday. Directed by Alireza Razzazifar, "Mana" features a story of a schoolgirl who has AIDS and the many problems she encounters at school. -MNA - 7/23/08

EU Foreign Ministers Call For More Diplomacy With Iran
European Foreign Ministers have called for diplomacy rather than a military option to prod Iran to abandon its nuclear activities, despite lack of progress in talks with Iranian officials in Geneva. Lisa Bryant has more from Paris. -VOA - 7/23/08

U.S. Diplomacy On Iran 'Important, Sincere' Shift For Bush
The administration of U.S. President George W. Bush sent Undersecretary of State William Burns, the country's No. 3 diplomat, to attend the July 19 negotiating session between Europe and Iran in Geneva. The United States also is reportedly considering opening what's called an "interest section" in Tehran. -RFE - 7/23/08

Iranian Filmmaker Bani-Etemad receives honorary doctorate from University of London
The University of London awarded an honorary doctorate to Iranian filmmaker Rakhshan Bani-Etemad during a ceremony on July 22. -MNA - 7/23/08

Can Iran-GCC Economic Ties Survive U.S. Pressures?
While growing economic and financial sanctions have led to a reduction of trade between Iran and Europe in recent years, the volume of trade between Iran and GCC countries has steadily increased. Bilateral Iran-GCC trade has increased by five-fold from $1.71 billion in 2000 to $8.71 billion in 2007. -Nader Habibi, ME Times - 7/23/08

Rice Says Iran Has Not Been Serious in Nuclear Talks
Any discussion about having an interests section in Tehran, which would allow for some limited diplomatic contact but not full diplomatic relations, should not be considered as a thawing of relations, Rice said. The United States has had an interests section in Cuba since 1978. - 7/23/08

Is Obama the 'Antiwar Candidate'?
Two words of advice for the antiwar voter: Caveat emptor -Justin Raimondo, Antiwar - 7/23/08

Ahmadinejad Says U.S. Envoy Showed 'Respect' Toward Iran
Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad has praised U.S. participation in last week's talks with Tehran on its disputed nuclear program as "a positive step" and a sign of respect by its arch foe. -Reuters - 7/23/08

Driving licenses of some countries not valid in Iran
The driving licence of Foreign nationals issued in the United States, Britain, Canada, the Emirates and Israel is not valid in Iran, it was reported on Wednesday. -IRNA - 7/23/08

FM advises London to revise stance in dealing with Iran
Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki here on Tuesday described the recent allegations by British Prime Minister Gordon Brown while visiting the occupied territories in total contradiction with the dominant atmosphere in Geneva negotiations and called on the UK to adopt a constitutive stance by revising its approach. -IRNA - 7/23/08

German company signs 100-million euro liquefied gas plant deal with Iran
A German company is to build three liquefied gas plants in Iran, worth 100 million euros, the daily Siegener Zeitung newspaper reported Wednesday. -IRNA - 7/23/08

Parliament Moves To Approve Polygamy, Over Iranian Women's Protests
An Iranian parliamentary committee has approved in the first reading a controversial draft law that allows men to take a second wife, a bill that women's rights activists have dubbed the "Antifamily Bill." -Iraj Gorgin, RFE - 7/22/08

Iran: Release Detained HIV/AIDS Experts
Iranian authorities should immediately release or charge two physicians who are internationally recognized for their work on HIV/AIDS, Human Rights Watch said today. The men, Arash and Kamyar Alaei, who are brothers, were detained without charge by Iranian security forces in late June, and their whereabouts remain unknown. - 7/22/08

U.S. Musicians Put Their Own Twist on Popular Persian Songs
An operatic voice sings of love lost and love found in a language unfamiliar to many in the audience and even to some members of the band. Monika Jalili and her group NoorSaaz are Americans who sing their own interpretations of Persian folk songs and popular music from the 1940s through the 1970s. -Esther Agbaje, - 7/22/08

Iran: New Arrests Target Student Activists
Security and intelligence agents are engaged in an extensive campaign of arbitrary detentions targeting student activists around the country, the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran said today. - 7/22/08

Confusion over Florida Travel Restrictions Blocks Travel to Iran
Widespread rumors that the Florida "Travel to Terrorist States Act" actually prohibits trips to Iran have caused some Iranian Americans to cancel their travel plans. Though the law is not yet being implemented, travel agents have begun to impose its restrictions on themselves preemptively, and in some cases, mistakenly. -Farid Zareie, NIAC - 7/22/08

Paris Premiere of Sophie Marceau's WWII Film Marks Iranian-Italian Star Maya Sansa French Debut -Darius KADIVAR - 7/22/08

Iranian students take sixth place in Intl. Chemistry Olympiad
Bagging one gold, two silver and one bronze medals, Iranian students ranked sixth in the 40th International Chemistry Olympiad, which was held in Budapest, Hungary, from July 12-21, 2008. - 7/22/08

Utah Jazz: Jazz beat Iranian national team in Rocky Mountain Revue
Supported wildly by 100 flag-waving, kazoo-blowing, chanting-in-unison fans who made an NBA summer league game feel like a World Cup final, Iran continued tuning up for its first Olympic appearance since 1948 by playing its second and final game in the Revue. The Jazz prevailed, 82-57. -Salt Lake Tribune - 7/22/08

Devil's Ship at Scotland's Edinburgh International Festival
Five women are living on an abandoned island, all the men have left and they are contemplating whether to leave or to stay. As a strange ship appears on the horizon their peace is shattered. - 7/22/08

The Iranian female high school students' attitude towards people with HIV/AIDS: a cross-sectional study
Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) has become an important public health hazard in Iran. It is believed that AIDS-related knowledge does not necessarily translate into behavior modification. - 7/22/08

Iran's National Teen Age Handball Team to attend World Championship
Iran's National Teen Age Handball Team beat Bahrain 31-25 here Monday evening in Asian Teen Age Games, making its way to World Championship of the contests as 3rd top team of the games. - 7/22/08

Opening soon in Tehran: A U.S. interests section
A U.S. interests section in Tehran won't by itself resolve conflicts with Iran, but it could prepare the way for a better future. -Boston Globe - 7/22/08

Course correction in Iran
There was no breakthrough, but this dangerous summer got a little less so last week with the inclusion of U.S. Undersecretary of State William Burns in the Geneva meeting with Iran, alongside the other confronting powers, China, Britain, France, Germany and Russia. -IHT - 7/22/08

West to flex military muscles against Iran
The United States is set to lead a joint military exercise in the Atlantic Ocean to show off its combat capabilities as a warning to Iran. -Press TV - 7/22/08

Iran's Petrochemicals export to reach $7.8b this year
Deputy Oil Minister Gholam-Hossein Nejabat anticipated on Tuesday that some dlrs 7.8 billion worth of petrochemicals will be exported during the current Iranian year (March 2008-March 2009). - 7/22/08

New oil field discovered in southern Iran
A new oil field was discovered in the city of Abadan in the Persian Gulf province of Khuzestan. According to the Oil Minister, the deposited oil in the new oil field, 'Arvand,' is estimated as 500 million barrels. -IRNA - 7/22/08

Coping with Iran's rising prices
Four young Iranians have written to about the rising cost of living - and food prices - in Tehran. - 7/22/08

China's June crude imports from Iran at 18-mth low
China's crude oil imports from Iran in June halved from a year ago to its lowest monthly level in 18 months, contributing to the overhang of crude stored offshore in Iran, official customs data showed on Tuesday. -Reuters - 7/22/08

Iran, Cinema of Fear, and TFF
What have New York's famed Tribeca Film Festival and the horror genre got to do with Iran? Apparently very many things. First, TFF in lower Manhattan annually showcases a new crop of films made in Iran or made about Iran. Second, the festival has in an unusual step this year given its top prize to a Swedish horror film, Let the Right One In, one of my own personal favorites. Third, Iran from all indications seems ripe for a major surge of talent and productivity in endogenous screen gore. -Omid M. Sarabi - 7/21/08

Photos: ValiAbad village in Varvasht protected region
Varvasht is an environmentally protected region located in north Iran. It is part of the Alborz mountain range. Varvasht is one of the mountain peaks (4030 meters). The following photos are from the village of ValiAbad in Varvasht region. - 7/21/08

Hollywood stereotyping of Muslims under attack
There is a move underway in Hollywood to attack American film stereotypes of Muslims—and the effort is not being mounted by Muslims. The campaign has been launched by the Writers Guild in Hollywood, in conjunction with the Brookings Institution, a Washington think-tank, and television producer and political fund-raiser Haim Saban, who happens to be Jewish. -Iran Times - 7/21/08

Iranian students finish 5th in Intl. Mathematical Olympiad
Iranian students ranked sixth in the 49th International Mathematical Olympiad, which is being held in Madrid, Spain, from July 10 to July 22. -MNA - 7/21/08

Iranian taekwondo team wins 6 medals in Belgrade
Iran's taekwondo team won six medals in the 10th annual World University Taekwondo Championships held in Belgrade, Serbia and Montenegro on July 16-20. -IRNA - 7/21/08

West Steps Up Pressure On Iran Over Nuclear Incentives Offer
Speaking to the Knesset on a visit to Israel, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown warned Tehran that it faces growing isolation if it does not comply with UN demands to stop uranium enrichment. -RFE - 7/21/08

A Persian Prince in the Making
Jake Gyllenhaal trains hard for title role in upcoming Jerry Bruckheimer-Disney Epic -Darius KADIVAR - 7/21/08

Rice: Iran 'Not Serious' at Nuclear Talks
On Sunday, U.S. military chief Admiral Mike Mullen said he was encouraged by the nuclear talks, which involved officials from Iran, the European Union and, for the first time, a senior U.S. envoy - Undersecretary of State William Burns. -VOA - 7/21/08

Indian government on the brink
The political redrawing of lines came as the Indian Parliament began debating on Monday a vote of confidence in the government of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. The vote, scheduled for late Tuesday and expected to be extremely close, pivots around India's deepening ties with the United States. -IHT - 7/21/08

Sanctions as Warfare
The dictionary defines 'sanctions' as "restrictions upon trade and financial dealings that a country imposes upon another for political reasons"-- A practice that in recent years has become a prime instrument of global dominance by a handful of major powers particularly the United States. -Daniel M Pourkesali - 7/21/08

Iranian ophthalmologist awarded in US
The ophthalmologist, who is also a faculty member of Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences has conducted research on retinal angiomatosis and on treatment of blindness due to ethyl alcohol intoxication. His research has yielded promising results. -IRNA - 7/21/08

Iraqi Leader: US Should Leave as Soon as Possible
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki says U.S. troops should leave Iraq “as soon as possible,” according to a magazine report, and he called presidential candidate Barack Obama’s suggestion of 16 months “the right timeframe for a withdrawal.” -AP - 7/21/08

Turkey ready to invest billions in Iran's South Pars gas field
Iranian Foreign Minister Manuchehr Mottaki said here on Sunday that during his recent trip to Turkey, bilateral economic relations and contracts currently being implemented were discussed. -MNA - 7/21/08

Damavand Registered a National Heritage of Iran
Iran's Mount Damavand, the highest point in the Middle East has been designated as the country's first National Natural Heritage Site. At an elevation of 5,628m (18,406ft), Mount Damavand is Iran's highest peak. It is a dormant volcano, which was active in the Quaternary Period. - 7/20/08

Iran Nuclear Talks Deadlock
After more than five hours of negotiations, the latest round of high-powered talks aimed at resolving Iran's nuclear program, once again, have ended in deadlock. Despite the first-ever presence of a senior U.S. official at the negotiating table, no progress has been made in settling this contentious issue. -VOA - 7/20/08

Iranian teams earn titles at RoboCup-2008 competitions
The Iranian teams from Sharif University of Technology, Qazvin Islamic Azad University, Khajeh Nasir al-Din Toosi University of Technology, Amirkabir University of Technology and Isfahan University reached the final stage of the tournament. - 7/20/08

Photos: Islamic designs for women dress
The Third Festival of Women of My Land currently is underway at the Institute for the Intellectual Development of Children and Young Adults in Tehran. A total number of 33 Islamic countries participated in the festival presenting new Islamic designs for women dress. - 7/20/08

Iran Khodro and PEUGEOT: 20 Years of Strategic Partnership
On the 19th of July, 2008, Jean-Philippe Collin, Automobiles PEUGEOT's Managing Director, and Dr. Manouchehr Manteghi, Iran Khodro's President and Chairman of the Board, have jointly celebrated the 20th anniversary of their companies partnership. - 7/20/08

Seismic Shift or Non-Decision by Bush on Iran?
The U.S. decision to send the State Department’s third-ranking official to sit in on the meeting between European Union foreign affairs chief Javier Solana and Iran’s nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili Saturday has been hailed as a major diplomatic breakthrough, but it is too soon to pop the champagne cork. -IPS - 7/20/08

US has yet to request for opening interest section: Iran's FM
The US has yet to make a formal request for opening an interest section in Iran, Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said on Sunday. -IRNA - 7/20/08

THE GLASS HOUSE - a documentary about the girls of Omid e Mehr
Be part of the Sneak Peak of this engaging documentary about the lives of four girls living at the margins of Iranian society, at the Seventh Biennial of Iranian Studies in Toronto, 1 August 2008, 7pm. - 7/20/08

US sets nuclear deadline for Iran
Iran must decide between confrontation and co-operation in the dispute over its nuclear plans, the US has warned. -BBC - 7/20/08

Former UK envoy welcomes US overtures towards Iran
Former British ambassador to Tehran, Sir Richard Dalton has welcomed US overtures towards Iran, including sending an official to Geneva talks and reports of Washington's plans to open an office in the Iranian capital. -IRNA - 7/20/08

Nationwide Protests to Oppose War with Iran
Street demonstrations, teach-ins, vigils, and “freezes” are among the events planned for this weekend as part of a nationwide protest against what are widely perceived to be moves by the George W. Bush administration toward military conflict with Iran. -OneWorld - 7/20/08

Nine face stoning death in Iran
At least eight women and one man are reported to have been sentenced to death by stoning in Iran. -BBC - 7/20/08

PAAIA Supports the U.S. Government Considering Establishing an Interest Section in Iran
An interest section would be responsible for protecting America's interests in Iran by, among other things, providing consular services to Americans visiting Iran, processing visa applications for Iranians wishing to travel to the United States and monitoring developments on the ground. - 7/19/08

Peace Advocates Act to Stop War With Iran
Member groups of United for Peace and Justice will hold actions across the United States July 19-21 to press Congress to take action to prevent war with Iran. - 7/19/08

These enemies have faces
The looming Iran-Israel confrontation has a seemingly deterministic quality to it. Listening to the politicians, one gets a sense that powers beyond our control are pulling us toward a 21st-century disaster. Yet a great deal of the force propelling us into confrontation is fueled by ignorance and dehumanization. Israel is demonized as "Little Satan," while Iranians are portrayed as irrational Muslim extremists. -Haaretz - 7/19/08

Iran volleyball team routs UAE
Iran's Peykan volleyball team has beaten the UAE's Al-Nasr at the 19th Asian Men's Club Volleyball Championship in Almaty, Kazakhstan. -Press TV - 7/19/08

Iran Rising: Gas for Europe, Gas for India & Pakistan...Sanctions? Israel? No Problem
The rise of Iran continues. And that rise was made abundantly clear during the 19th World Petroleum Congress in Madrid in early July. -Counterpunch - 7/19/08

The Dark Side: Jane Mayer on the Inside Story of How the War on Terror Turned Into a War on American Ideals
We spend the hour with New Yorker magazine investigative journalist Jane Mayer about her new book, The Dark Side: The Inside Story of How the War on Terror Turned Into a War on American Ideals. -Democracy Now - 7/19/08

Hezbollah's formidable weapons arsenal under fresh scrutiny
Lebanon's new government is slated to review the militant Shiite party's weapons as part of a national defense strategy once it takes office. The prisoner swap with Israel has given Hezbollah new leverage. -CSM - 7/19/08

Russia's Gazprom signs major energy deal with Iran
The National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) and Russia's giant gas company Gazprom have signed an agreement for the development of Iran's oil and gas fields. -MNA - 7/18/08

President of Peace Action Maine Returns From Iran
Waterville native and Portland resident Eric Hooglund, a politics professor at Bates College and President of Peace Action Maine, has returned from his most recent trip to Iran. Upon his return, he called for diplomatic negotiations between the US and Iranian governments, and expressed concern about the introduction of resolutions into both houses of the US Congress that would authorize the President to initiate a naval blockade of Iran. - 7/18/08

Taming the hawk
It may be too early to proclaim an end to the "Cheney era", but Washington's decision to participate in Saturday's nuclear talks with Iran and send diplomats back to Tehran is a very significant shift. -Guardian - 7/18/08

Mona's Dream
Bahá'í Girl's Martyrdom Story Set To Become a Mel Gibson - Jack Lenz Co-Production Movie -Darius KADIVAR - 7/18/08

US presence in Geneva meeting opportunity for Washington: Iran
Iran's Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said here Thursday that the participation of the US Undersecretary of State William Burns in nuclear talks in Geneva is an opportunity for Washington. -IRNA - 7/18/08

Rocky Mtn Revue: Iranians about basketball, not politics
Samad Bahrami and his teammates are visiting Utah on a mission clouded by grave political overtones. But it has nothing to do with missile tests, nuclear ambitions, terrorism or the threat of war. For them, it's all about basketball. -Salt Lake Tribune - 7/18/08

Hague Tribunal Figures in Terror Case Involving Iran, Chicago Museum
Iran is in a standoff with a federal court in Chicago concerning information a judge has ordered to be turned over to lawyers for terrorism victims who hold multimillion-dollar legal judgments against the Islamic Republic because of its support for the terrorist group Hezbollah. -NY Sun - 7/18/08

Keep watch on the hawks
US policy on Iran seems to be softening, but the world must stay vigilant to avert the threat of war -Abbas Edalat, Guardian - 7/18/08

Iran Sends Mixed Signals On Eve Of Nuclear Talks
In mid-June, the so-called 5+1 group of countries tasked by the UN with negotiating with Iran over its contested nuclear program offered Iran a broad package of incentives, including assistance with its civilian nuclear program, in exchange for the suspension of uranium enrichment. Iran rejected a similar proposal two years ago. But this time it responded with a smile, not a sneer. -Hossein Aryan, RFE - 7/18/08

The American dream invades Iran
The proposed opening of a US interests section in Tehran is not, as seen by many, an act of reconciliation by the US. Nor does it represent a victory for the doves in the state department in relation to the US government's foreign policy. -Masoud Golsorkhi, Guardian - 7/18/08

France and UK reduce trade ties with Iran
The British and French embassies in Tehran have dramatically scaled back their trade sections amid a slowdown in business ties with Iran caused by international sanctions. -Financial Times - 7/18/08

Feds Raid Portland Charity That Sponsors Kids in Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan
A charity set up to sponsor poor children in Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Indonesia and the United States had its computers seized by federal agents in a raid Tuesday on its downtown Portland office. -Willamette Week, Oregon - 7/18/08

The US-Iran Foreplay
First there were the fireworks (war games and missile works). Now U.S. and Iran are preparing to sit at the nuclear negotiations table in Geneva this weekend. There is also a lot of excitement building up that within a month U.S. will announce opening of a diplomatic outpost in Tehran, after 30 years of absence. On top of that the two sides have been engaged in a lot of signaling and winking in the last few weeks. - 7/17/08

Spiegel article claims "first human rights charter" is a hoax!
Persia is under attack! First came the 300 Spartans; and now the Spiegel article! The 300 were bunch of good looking and brave guys who fought this vast army of nasty looking and savage Persians. Ok. I can take that; even though from that savagery not much is left in me. In fact I could've really used a bit of that when confronting ... -Ali Moayedian - 7/17/08

Reports: U.S. To Establish Diplomatic Presence In Tehran
Newspaper reports this morning are full of speculation that Washington is ready to go ahead with plans to send a small group of diplomats to staff a U.S. interest section in Tehran - 7/17/08

Asia Society Expresses Deep Concern Over Detention of Iranian HIV/AIDS Pioneers in Iran
Asia Society today expressed its deep concern regarding confirmed reports that two Iranian nationals who are part of Asia Society's Young Leaders Program have been detained in Iran by Iranian authorities. - 7/17/08

Hula-Hooping for Peace at the Democratic National Convention
I, Melody Moezzi, will be hula-hooping for peace in Denver during the Democratic National Convention. I am an Iranian-American. I have two homelands: the United States and Iran. I am not half-Iranian. I am not half-American. I am 100% Iranian and 100% American. Thus, peace, particularly between the US and Iran, is not simply a political issue for me: It is deeply personal. - 7/17/08

Teacher's Workshop on Iran: A Successful PAAIA Initiative in Educating American Educators
From July 8 to 11th, PAAIA sponsored the Summer Teachers Workshop, an annual event organized by the World Affairs Councils of America. Each year, twenty high school teachers from across the country are accepted to partake in a three-day emersion program concentrating on a particular region or country. - 7/17/08

Behzad Ranjbaran's Exclusive Interview with Salam Toronto: Bridging the Gap Between East and West through Music
The Shahnamah Millennium Concert and the Toronto Symphony Orchestra come together for a unique multimedia performance on August 2nd, 2008, performing legendary Persian composer Behzad Ranjbaran's Shahnamah-inspired Persian Trilogy. - 7/17/08

NIAC Welcomes US Participation in Nuclear Talks
While the State Department characterizes the meeting as a "one-time deal", it signals a significant shift in U.S.' long-standing policy and demonstrates a positive step towards reducing the possibility of a nuclear-armed Iran. - 7/17/08

Israel threatens to wage illegal, "pre-emptive" military attack on Iran
On Monday July 14th Israel's senior defence official, General Amos Gilad during an interview with BBC Radio four's Today programme said that Israel is preparing itself to take military action against Iran and that it would do so if diplomacy fails. -CASMII - 7/17/08

House Iran Resolution Would Send Alarming Message to President Bush
The House Foreign Affairs Committee may soon begin considering a resolution offered by Reps. Gary Ackerman (D-N.Y.) and Mike Pence (R-Ind.) that would prohibit exporting petroleum to Iran and impose "stringent inspection requirements" on all people, vehicles, and cargo going in and out of the country. This legislation has sent off alarm bells throughout the peace and security community. - 7/17/08

Iran Shows Its Cards
I’ve always pointed out that no plan survives initial contact with the enemy, and furthermore one can never forget that, in war, the enemy gets to vote. On the issue of an American and/or Israeli attack on Iran, the Iranian military has demonstrated exactly how it would cast its vote. -Scott Ritter, TruthDig - 7/17/08

NIAC Welcomes Sen. McCain's Appointment of Iranian-American Liaison
National Iranian American Council (NIAC) welcomes the McCain campaign's appointment of a special coordinator for Iranian American outreach. McCain's is the first presidential campaign in history to create a specific position for the purpose of reaching out to the Iranian-American community. - 7/17/08

Novatans work to develop antibiotic super-bugs can’t beat
Siblings Ron and Kathryn Najafi, a pair of Novato-resident researchers, aren’t just looking for new drugs to fight the growing problem; they’re developing an entirely new class of anti-bacterial compound from scratch. -Novato Advance - 7/17/08

Iran volleyball team defeats China
Iran's Peykan volleyball team has defeated the Chinese side at the 19th Asian Men's Club Volleyball Championship in Kazakhstan. -Press TV - 7/17/08

Citizens Speak Up Against Military Action In Iran
A gathering of more than 100 concerned citizens adamantly voiced their opposition to military action in Iran at a town hall meeting Tuesday. -The Capital Times (Wisconsin) - 7/17/08

EU keeps Iran opposition group on banned list
The European Union said on Wednesday it was keeping an Iranian opposition group on its list of banned terrorist movements, days before it leads major power talks with Iran over Tehran's disputed nuclear program. -Reuters - 7/17/08

U.S. Shifts Policy, To Send Envoy To Iran Nuclear Talks
U.S. Undersecretary of State William Burns will join European Union foreign-policy chief Javier Solana and envoys from China, Russia, France, Britain, and Germany to attend talks with Iran's top nuclear negotiator, Saeed Jalili, in Geneva on July 19. -RFE - 7/16/08

Persia: Ancient Soul of Iran
What's so striking about the ruins of Persepolis in southern Iran, an ancient capital of the Persian Empire that was burned down after being conquered by Alexander the Great, is the absence of violent imagery on what's left of its stone walls. Among the carvings there are soldiers, but they're not fighting; there are weapons, but they're not drawn. Mainly you see emblems suggesting that something humane went on here instead -National Geographics - 7/16/08

US Official: Top American Diplomat to Attend Talks With Iran
A senior U.S. official says the United States will send a top diplomat to participate in talks with Iran about Tehran's nuclear program at a meeting Saturday in Geneva. The U.S has previously refused to attend any talks with Tehran on its nuclear program until it stops enriching uranium. - 7/16/08

Open Letter from an Iranian to US Congress
Honorable Ladies & Gentleman! It was with great dismay that I, and many of my fellow Iranians in Iran and abroad, learnt of the regrettably widespread support by you in the U.S Congress, for the Resolution HR 362. -Mehrdad Shahabi, Tehran - 7/16/08

Kazemi plans to be first Iranian to receive U.S. hoops scholarship
One week ago, in an episode of U.S.-Iran relations that did not make anyone's evening news, the 18-year-old captain of the Iranian junior national team took a pass from an American teammate, drove to the basket and dunked with such authority that some Division I coaches in the gym began curiously examining his bio page in the Reebok All-American Camp's handbook. - 7/16/08

Iran and US eye diplomatic opening
After last week's show of force by Iran, now there are growing signs that both Iran and the United States want to do some serious talking about the nuclear crisis. After the harsh rhetoric and the threats, it is a critical moment for diplomacy. -BBC - 7/16/08

Prevent War With Iran
The question now is whether we will pursue another illegal and disastrous war, which the American people—including Jewish Americans—don't want. Will we destroy more American lives and those of Iranians. -YES Magazine - 7/16/08

Kucinich Decries Iran Saber Rattling in House Legislation
"This body must not allow an attack on innocent people be used as a pretext for an attack on more innocent people. Indeed, we have done this once with disastrous results. I believe this House is better served by demanding sensible and responsible diplomatic foreign policy initiatives." - 7/16/08

Iran's Basketball Wins Olympic Berth after 60 Years
The team is touring Croatia, Slovenia and Lithuania before it participates in the Rocky Mountain Revue, the Utah Jazz-hosted summer league, later this month. The Iranians will play a series of games against NBA teams and will also have the opportunity to observe NBA team practices. -FNA - 7/16/08

MPs rap UAE mistreatment of Iranians
Iranian lawmakers have criticized United Arab Emirates' security officers for mistreating Iranian passengers at the Dubai airport. - 7/16/08

America's next steps
As Americans begin to debate the merits of John McCain and Barack Obama, the Middle East is roiling. Just as the 1948 Israel war of independence triggered the collapse of the old order and the Six Day War of 1967 spurred profound shifts in both Israeli and Arab societies, the events of the past eight years have brought the region to a precipice. -IHT - 7/16/08

What's NOT in the IAEA Iran Reports
Peter Zimmerman carries august credentials. He is a nuclear physicist...All in all, he sounds like someone who knows about nuclear technology, including nuclear weapons, and has the time to think carefully about anything he might write on the subject. Or so you would think. But on July 6, 2008, Zimmerman published an opinion piece in the Boston Globe entitled "Time for Iran to Face More Sanctions," a screed that badly misuses the International Atomic Energy Agency's May 2008 report on its monitoring of Iran's nuclear power activities. -Antiwar - 7/16/08

Food prices up 45% in Iran
The Central Bank of Iran has announced that the annual inflation rate of food products rose to 45 percent in the week ended July 11. -Press TV - 7/16/08

Top senators agree on expanding sanctions
Two influential senators sealed an agreement Tuesday to seek expansion of punishing economic pressure on Iran in an accelerating drive to change its international behavior through sanctions. -AP - 7/16/08

Senator McCain's Counterproductive Remarks on Iran
As a presidential candidate, Mr. McCain's values and actions embody America worldwide. In the eyes of Iranian-Americans, who constitute one of the most educated and affluent immigrant groups in the U.S., his comments may have offended voters. -U.S.-Iran Alliance - 7/16/08

Pentagon Says 'Aggressive' Russian Statements on Missile Defense Not Justified
The head of the U.S. missile defense program says Russia's sharp rhetoric about the system is not justified, and installations planned for Europe would not be any threat to Russia or its defenses. -VOA - 7/16/08

Iran plans air drills to boost deterrence
Iran's Air Force plans to stage a large-scale combat and defensive drills to beef up deterrence against threats from the US and Israel. -Press TV - 7/15/08

Iranian Swimmer Sets New Record
Iranian swimmer Mohammad Alirezai has finished fourth in the 200m breaststroke event in Croatia, setting a new national record. Alirezai is qualified to swim in the 100m breaststroke in the 2008 Beijing Olympics for the first time in Iran's history. -Press TV - 7/15/08

Historical Amnesia: Iran Air Flight 655
Mm-hmm. Could this be true? Could the spokesman for the State Department not know anything about the role that the US played in the Iran-Iraq war in general and Iranian Air Flight 655 in particular? Is it possible that the entire US Department of State is ignorant of that history? Is it conceivable that the current US policy towards Iran is being made by a host of ignoramuses? -Sasan Fayazmanesh - 7/15/08

Wife of ex-FBI agent to repeat Iran visit in search of her husband
The wife of a former FBI agent who went missing in March 2007 has announced that she is going to visit Tehran in the coming weeks. - 7/15/08

Iranian Writer Porochista Khakpour in Contention For $115,000 Dylan Thomas Prize
Porochista Khakpour, who was born in Tehran, Iran in 1978, is one of the nominated writers for her first novel, Sons and Other Flammable Objects. She received her BA from Sarah Lawrence College and her MA from Johns Hopkins University. - 7/15/08

President George W Bush Backs Israeli Plan for Strike on Iran
President George W Bush has told the Israeli government that he may be prepared to approve a future military strike on Iranian nuclear facilities if negotiations with Tehran break down, according to a senior Pentagon official. -The Times, UK - 7/15/08

Call to Action July 19-21: No War With Iran
Responding to the renewed threats of a U.S./Israeli attack on Iran before President Bush leaves office, United for Peace and Justice calls for coordinated Days of Action across the United States on July 19-21. Now is the time to speak out against any U.S./Israeli military attack on Iran. - 7/15/08

Are sanctions against Iran legal?
Prof. Muhammad Sahimi: The legal grounds for UN sanctions and Res. 362 have not been established -The Real News Network - 7/15/08

Talking to Iran's Only Jewish Member of Parliament
Morris Motamed is the only Jewish member of Parliament in Iran's Majlis, and is the official representative of the largest (25,000) Jewish community in the Middle East diaspora outside of Israel. -Counterpunch - 7/15/08

MKO and its affiliates designated as terrorist groups by U.S.
According to the latest list of Special Designated Nationals and blocked persons released by the US Department of the Treasury Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) on July 8, 2008, the terrorist Mojahedin-e Khalq Organization (MKO) a.k.a. MEK (Mujahedin-E Khalq), PMOI (People's Mujahedin Of Iran), NCR (National Council of Resistance), NLA (national Liberation Army), NCRI (National Council of Resistance of Iran), MISS (Muslim Iranian Students Society)... are all once again placed on the list of Specially Designated Global Terrorists. - 7/15/08

The Bipartisan Road to War in Iran and The Activist Response
More than 100 House Democrats have joined 117 House Republicans in co-sponsoring a bill which peace activists fear may further pave the road to war with Iran. The Bill, House Concurrent Resolution 362, describes Iran as a threat to international peace, stability in the Middle East, and US National Security. -Toward Freedom, VT - 7/15/08

Iran: Talks with US possible soon
Iranian leader Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has said talks with the United States are possible in the near future, according the country's official news agency. -BBC - 7/15/08

Bush Calls for Religious Freedom In China, Iran
In remarks on the 10th anniversary of the International Religious Freedom Act, the president made specific mention of Iran, Eritrea, Sudan, North Korea, Burma, Uzbekistan and Saudi Arabia. But his most detailed remarks concerned the treatment of those seeking religious freedom in China. -VOA - 7/15/08

Defying U.S., Hezbollah stronger than ever
Hezbollah is set to achieve its long-held goal of winning the release of Lebanese prisoners held in Israel this week, emboldening the Iranian-backed group which has emerged even more powerful from recent conflicts. -Reuters - 7/15/08

Quake jolts Isfahan province of Iran
An earthquake measuring 4 on the Richter scale shook the vicinity of Jandaq in Isfahan province on Tuesday. -IRNA - 7/15/08

Iranian bank to be opened in Iraqi Kurdistan
The head of Iran-Iraq chamber of commerce Hussein Tizmaghz said on Sunday that an Iranian bank is to be opened in Sulaymaniyah city of Iraqi Kurdistan, north of Iraq. -ISNA - 7/15/08

On the Shahnameh millennium concert: A conversation with Master Behzad Ranjabaran
When my friend Mohamad Tavakoli-Targhi asked me to write a piece about the Shahnameh Millennium Concert, I thought it might be best to interview the composer of "Persian Trilogy," Behzad Ranjbaran. -Fariba Amini - 7/14/08

Tehran is Hot
This wish goes for the recent package presented to Iran by the group of 5+1 brought over by a high delegation headed by Mr. Solana. Many hope that it will somehow and eventually be accepted by Iran, given that Iran right to sovereignty is accepted and silly threats and sanctions are lifted. -Syma Sayyah, Tehran - 7/14/08

Photos: Iran's Cultural and Sports Olympiad for Women University Students
The 9th cultural and sports Olympiad for the female university students opened in Tehran on July 13. - 7/14/08

J Street's Open Letter On Iran
Talk of military action against Iran grows louder every day. Rumors swirl of an Israeli attack before Inauguration Day or a Bush administration October surprise. There are reports of special ops teams already in place and at work. (J Street is the political arm of the pro-Israel, pro-peace movement) - 7/14/08

Consider the poppies
A joint Nato-Iran venture tackling the Afghan drug trade could deliver great political fruits for all -Roger Howard, Guardian - 7/14/08

Iran one year on: Osanloo still jailed, workers still oppressed
A year to the day since his violent arrest the ITF, International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) and Amnesty International are calling on the world not to forget jailed Iranian trade unionist Mansour Osanloo. - 7/14/08

Afghan President Hails Relations With Iran, U.S.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai has underscored his country's good relations and "cooperation" with Iran in the six years since a UN-backed interim government took over after the fall of the Taliban regime. -RFE - 7/14/08

Video: Workshop on Iran
U.S. high school teachers get another view of Iran. CNN's Jill Dougherty reports. - 7/14/08

Iranian athletes to participate in IWAS: New Jersey, July 19-27
Iran's youth disabled powerlifting and track and field teams will participate in the 2008 IWAS Junior World Wheelchair and Amputee Games to be held in New Jersey, the U.S., from July 19 to 27. - 7/14/08

Are you better off than five years ago?
That was the question posed in the latest Pew Research Center national public opinion survey and the results were dubbed as the most pessimistic assessment of personal progress in the last five decades of polling conducted by the Pew Research and the Gallup organization. -Daniel M Pourkesali - 7/14/08

Iran's Saipa to export 20,000 autos to Algeria
Leading Iranian automaker Saipa will export over 20,000 cars to Algeria within three years, the export manager of Saipa said in Tehran on Monday. - 7/14/08

Iran-China trade to reach $30B in 2008
Chinese Assistant Foreign Minister Zhai Jun said on Monday that Iran-China bilateral trade will reach dlrs 30 billion by year end. - 7/14/08

Russia's Gazprom Agrees to Develop Iranian Oil, Gas Fields
Russian state energy company Gazprom has agreed to help Iran further develop its oil and natural gas fields. The two sides signed the agreement Sunday during a visit to Tehran by a Gazprom delegation, led by chief executive Alexei Miller. - 7/14/08

World 'would rue' attack on Iran
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has said that a military attack on Iran over its nuclear programme would cost the world dearly. -BBC - 7/14/08

Ahmadinejad Willing to Consider US Diplomatic Office in Tehran
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says he is willing to consider a U.S. diplomatic office in Tehran. He made the comment Sunday in response to a question after a cabinet meeting. He said he welcomes the idea of expansion of ties between the peoples of Iran and the United States. -VOA - 7/13/08

Death of a Teahouse Painter: Ahmad Khalili (1943-2008)
One of the last survivors of Iranian teahouse painting, Ahmad Khalili died of lung cancer at Tehran's Kasra Hospital on Saturday evening. He was 64 years old. - 7/13/08

Filmmaker: "Three Women" made with love for Iran
Filmmaker Manijeh Hekmat is convinced that her latest movie "Three Women" is a film about Iran and is made with love for Iran. - 7/13/08

Iran condemns McCain joke that exporting American cigarettes could be a way of killing Iranians
According to the Information and Press Bureau of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Hosseini said politicians who hold the fates of a civilization in their hands should mind their words. Two civilized nations of Iran and the US fully denounce such views and would remember them, he said. - 7/13/08

New Billion Barrel Oil Field Discovered in Khuzestan Province: Iran's Oil Minister
Oil Minister Gholam Hossein Nozari said on Sunday that a new oil field with an estimated reserve of 1.1 billion barrels of oil has been discovered in north of Andimeshk city in Khuzestan province. -IRNA - 7/13/08

Iran to complain to FIFA over Charlton's perfidy
Iran's Football Federation (IFF) announced on Sunday that it is set to complain to FIFA about Charlton Athletic's refusal to hold a warm-up match in Spain over political issues. -MNA - 7/13/08

Iran will hold direct talks with US, if necessary: President
Iran will hold direct talks with the United States if necessary, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on Sunday. He said that Tehran does not need any mediator for talks with Washington and is well-prepared for direct talks. - 7/13/08

Moin was another Arash whose arrow was his language: litterateur
Moin passed away on July 3 marking the anniversary of the death of Iranian hero Arash the Archer, who died after shooting an arrow to mark the border of Iran and Turan. Moin was another Arash whose arrow was his language, literary scholar Qadamali Sarami remarked during the commemoration of Moin's death. - 7/13/08

Experts Say Human Trafficking A Major Problem In U.S.
Every year, the U.S. State Department issues a report on the status of human trafficking around the world. These documents focus only on the practice and impact of modern slavery in foreign lands. But two experts told a Washington conference on human trafficking on July 10 that the problem is especially problematic in the United States itself. -RFE - 7/13/08

Iran-Austria trade volume hits $1B
Iran's ambassador to Austria stated that the trade volume between Tehran and Vienna had reached one billion dollars. -MNA - 7/13/08

Beijing Olympics: Iranian Hercules will be there!
Head of Iran's Weightlifting Federation has ruled out Friday the speculations over Hossein Rezazadeh's absence in the 2008 Beijing Olympics. - 7/12/08

Europe Gets Increasingly On Board With Iran Sanctions
In the international showdown over Iran's nuclear program, Europe is the player with the greatest economic leverage in Tehran. But Europe has been reluctant to use trade ties to press Iran to give up uranium enrichment. Not anymore. -RFE - 7/12/08

Iran's u-16 football team wins Russian tourney
Iranian u-16 football team clinched the championship of the 8-a-side football tournament in Yakutsk on Friday. -MNA - 7/12/08

Israel Hints at Pre-emptive Attack on Iran
The sabre-rattling over Iran’s nuclear progamme has grown louder as a defiant Tehran claimed to have conducted missile tests for a second day running, the US warned that it would defend its interests and its allies in the region, and Israel hinted it was ready to stage a preventive attack to destroy Iranian nuclear installations. -Independent - 7/12/08

Total to develop its key activities in Iran
Total Group of France announced on Saturday that it has some important activities in Iran and intends to keep and develop them. -IRNA - 7/12/08

Hagee’s ‘Christians for Israel’ Meet in DC, Seeking Conflict With Iran
You have probably heard of Pastor John Hagee. Senator McCain, after seeking Hagee’s endorsement, rejected it: “McCain told CNN’s Brian Todd that he rejected Hagee’s endorsement after Todd brought to his attention Hagee’s comments that Adolf Hitler had been fulfilling God’s will by hastening the desire of Jews to return to Israel in accordance with biblical prophecy,” CNN reported on May 22. -Huffington Post - 7/12/08

US Confirms Offer to Iran on Nuclear Pre-Negotiations
The State Department confirms that Iran could enter negotiations on its nuclear program without initially meeting the demand of the United States and other major powers that it suspend its uranium enrichment program. U.S. officials say they are amenable to a so-called pre-negotiation in which Iran would only be required to stop adding to its enrichment capacity. - 7/11/08

Is There an Oil Shortage?
The popular perception of the recently skyrocketing oil price is that there is an oil shortage in global energy markets. The perceived shortage is generally blamed on the Organization of Petroleum Exporting countries (OPEC) for "insufficient" production, or on countries like China and India for their increased demand for energy, or on both. -Ismael Hossein-zadeh - 7/11/08

Iran: 17th Environmental Art Festival focuses on water crisis
Iranian earth artist Ahmad Nadalian announced that the 17th Environmental Art Festival focuses on the water crisis and will continue through the end of summer. - 7/11/08

Iran's Civil Society Movement Sets Up "National Peace Council"
On Thursday July 3, the National Peace Council in Iran convened its first meeting. Tens of prominent individuals engaged in various spheres of political, social and cultural work held the inaugural meeting of the founding committee of the National Peace Council. - 7/11/08

"Children of Adam are Limbs of a Single Body": Lessons from Sa'di of Shiraz on "Enhanced Interrogation Techniques"
Sa'di, the thirteen century Iranian poet, was a man for all seasons. Distinct among his peers for a rare poetic talent and a sharp humor, he was a traveler, teacher, and master ghazal writer all in one. But, above all, he loved to tease and to question. -Fatemeh Keshavarz - 7/11/08

A night with some dry drunk Persians
I got drunk on music at Frank Gehry’s last night along with two thousand other people. Even though independence day usually is accompanied by the two Adamses - Samuel (the beer), and John (the second president) - this year was different. -Michele Roohani - 7/11/08

Iran's national basketball team to play at Utah's Revue
Eight teams will participate in this year’s Revue: Joining the Utah's Jazz this summer will be the Atlanta Hawks, Dallas Mavericks, Golden State Warriors, New Jersey Nets, San Antonio Spurs, along with a D-League All-Star team and Iran's national basketball team, the 2007 FIBA Asian Champion. - 7/11/08

State Department's Iran Democracy Fund Shrouded in Secrecy
Since 2006, Congress has poured tens of millions of dollars into a State Department program aimed at promoting regime change in Iran. The “Democracy Program” initiative has been shrouded in secrecy since its inception and many critics of the initiative (who are also outspoken critics of the Iranian government) believe that it is directly linked to a spate of arrests of dozens of Iranian dissidents suspected of working secretly with the Bush administration to topple the Iranian government. -Public Record - 7/11/08

Iran: Learning the Lessons of Cambodia and Iraq
While, expanding the Iraq war into Iran may serve the president's immediate interests by distracting the public from focusing on more pressing issues like inflation, unemployment, world food shortages, global warming, the energy crisis, the growing Chinese and Russian threats, or most importantly – justifying his Iraq legacy, Mr. Bush fails to realize that geo-politics doesn't mean much to someone whose relative you just bombed. -Simbala Martin - 7/11/08

Archaeologists to refuse help over possible Iran strike
PERSEPOLIS, once the capital of the Persian empire, and the massive mud-brick Bam citadel are among the nine listed World Heritage Sites in Iran. Yet leading archaeologists are urging colleagues to refuse any military requests to draw up a list of Iranian sites that should be exempted from air strikes. -NewScientist - 7/11/08

Giving Neocons the Fingar
Yesterday afternoon, as guests balanced buffet lunches on their knees, one of America's top intelligence official made some provocative and fascinating comments about the current US-Iranian impasse. What he said was like a thumb in the eye to neoconservatives and assorted other sabre-rattlers. -Robert Dreyfuss, Nation - 7/11/08

Iran to Hold Nuclear Talks with EU's Solana on July 19 in Geneva
Iran's official news agency (IRNA) quoted a spokesman for Iran's Supreme National Security Council Ahmad Khademolmelleh as saying the talks between Saeed Jalili and Solana will take place on July 19. They are scheduled to discuss a package of incentives Solana introduced in June. - 7/11/08

Russian FM Says Iran Missile Tests Prove US Shield 'Not Needed'
Russia's foreign minister says Iran's missile tests this week show a planned U.S. missile defense system in Europe is unnecessary, because Tehran's rockets cannot travel that far. -VOA - 7/11/08

Total Deals Fresh Blow To Iranian Economy
With Total's decision to pull out of Iran, the country has lost the last major Western energy company willing to make a significant investment to develop the country's vast gas reserves. -RFE - 7/11/08

Reality Bites Back: Why the US Won't Attack Iran
It's been on the minds of antiwar activists and war critics since 2003. And little wonder. If you don't remember the pre-invasion of Iraq neocon quip, "Everyone wants to go to Baghdad. Real men want to go to Tehran..." – then take notice. -Antiwar - 7/11/08

Seymour Hersh: US Training Jondollah and MEK for Bombing preparation
In an interview with NPR on his latest New Yorker Article, titled 'Preparing the battlefield', the renowned investigative journalist Seymour Hersh reveals more striking details of his findings on the aim of the $400 million budgeted US covert operations inside Iran. - 7/11/08

Iran to develop S. Pars development with or without Total: Oil Minister
The Minister's comment was a reaction to remarks by Total chief executive Christophe de Margerie to the Financial Times that Total will not go ahead with development of the huge South Pars gas field because it is politically 'risky'. -Press TV - 7/11/08

Iranian Leaders Offer Nuclear Hope
The beating of the war drums over Iran may get the most attention, but there are growing signs of progress toward a possible diplomatic solution to the nuclear standoff. -TIME - 7/11/08

Iran to raise oil production 1 mbpd by 2010
Iran will raise oil production by the end of the current development plan (March 2010), says Iranian Oil Minister Gholam-Hossein Nozari. - 7/11/08

Iranian American Political Action Committee and Public Affairs Alliance of Iranian Americans merge
Merger will advance the best interests of the Iranian American community by greatly enhancing its effective participation in the American political process - 7/10/08

Bush's War Betrays Sage of Monticello's Vision for Liberty
George W. Bush's recent speech at Thomas Jefferson's Monticello home highlights contrasting presidential legacies for advancing liberty in the world. -R.K. Ramazani and W. Scott Harrop - 7/10/08

Iranian Cyclists Planting Trees For Peace
Santa Cruz to Host Tree Planting (on July 10) with Iranian Couple Cycling Around the World for Peace & Environmental Conservation - 7/10/08

U.S., Israel and Iran: Who is threatening who?
Iran has been conducting war games - code-named "Noble Prophet" - in Persian Gulf's Strait of Hormuz. As part of these exercises, Iran test-fired some 9 medium and long range missiles on Wednesday. Not surprisingly this generated huge amount of noise and "concern" by U.S. government officials. -Ali Moayedian - 7/10/08

Looking Back At Tehran's 1999 Student Protests
Some call it the "Iranian Tiananmen Square," though it was not as bloody or as widespread as the Chinese student unrest in 1989. What happened nine years ago this week in Tehran has been the subject of intense discussion inside and outside Iran -- and sparked the creation of a student movement that has had a huge impact on the country's sociopolitical life. -RFE - 7/10/08

Iran: Crucial Facts and Ignored Options
The current legislation in the House and Senate on Iran -- under discussion in a House committee today -- was basically written by AIPAC and spoon fed to both Democratic and Republican Congress people. It's full of half-truths and exaggerations about Iran. - 7/10/08

McCain's Insensitive Iran Statement
Yesterday, Presidential candidate Senator John McCain, in response to a question about a survey showing increased U.S. exports to Iran -- mostly of cigarettes -- replied by saying, "Maybe that's a way of killing them." Despite his initial backpedaling by saying "I meant that as a joke," Senator McCain's comment is unacceptable and very troubling for the Iranian-American community. -NIAC - 7/10/08

Azerbaijani Audience Gets A Taste Of Iranian 'Soft Power'
Most of the men RFE/RL spoke to in one Astara teahouse were reluctant to provide their names, but didn't hide their fondness for Sahar TV's "Compass" program and for call-in shows conducted in their native tongue. One young man, who said he tunes in between work at a car-repair shop, says he shares the belief that the Iranian programming offers alternative opinions rarely seen on domestic television. - 7/10/08

Iranian Immigrants' Dreams Die In Dubai, 'City Of Happiness'
There are at least 30 hostels in the Jamal Abdul Naser area of Dubai that house Iranian immigrants. Muhammad, a young Iranian, lives in one of those pensions in a narrow back street, paying some $14 per night. He spends his days job-hunting. In the evening, he returns to the rundown hostel where he shares a room with eight other immigrants. -RFE - 7/10/08

If it ain't broke, don't fix it!
On July 7th, U.S. navy announced that it would carry out exercises in the Persian Gulf. Commodore Peter Hudson claimed that these exercises were being carried out to protect "maritime infrastructure such as gas and oil installations". -Soraya Sepahpour-Ulrich - 7/10/08

US Says Iran's Missile Tests Do Not Make Conflict More Likely
U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates says Wednesday's Iranian missile tests provide further evidence of the need for a European missile defense system, but he says the tests do not make military confrontation with Iran any more likely. - 7/10/08

Burns to Senate: Iran is not 10 feet tall
“[Iran] is not ten feet tall. It often substitutes assertiveness and self-aggrandizing pronouncements for enduring power, promoting the illusion of Iran as a real counterweight to the United States,” said Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs, William Burns at today’s hearings on US foreign policy on Iran at the House Foreign Affairs and Senate Foreign Relations Committees. -NIAC - 7/10/08

Interview with Condoleezza Rice: Will there be a U.S. or Israeli attack on Iran's nuclear facilities?
QUESTION: Madame Secretary, thank you so much for this interview with Radio Farda. Let me start with a question that's on the mind of many Iranians these days. Will there be a U.S. or Israeli attack on Iran's nuclear facilities? - 7/10/08

Leftist Students Square Off Against President in Iran
You might be surprised to learn that some Iranian university students call each other "comrade," hold up pictures of Che Guevara in rallies, use the hammer and sickle symbol on their blogs, and look to Karl Marx as their philosophical role model. After all, they live under the theocracy of the Islamic Republic, where Marxism is considered blasphemy and association with it can have heavy legal consequences. -Niusha Boghrati, World Press - 7/10/08

2nd day of Iranian missile tests heightens tension with U.S
The confrontation between Tehran and Washington seemed to sharpen on Thursday as Iran tested missiles for the second successive day and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said the United States would defend its allies and protect its interests against an attack. -IHT - 7/10/08

Justice looks at allowing FBI to use profiling
The Justice Department is considering letting the FBI investigate Americans without any evidence of wrongdoing, relying instead on a terrorist profile that could single out Muslims, Arabs or other racial and ethnic groups. -AP - 7/10/08

Iran's unemployment falls below 10%
Iran's unemployment rate has dropped to 9.6 percent this spring, falling below the 10 percent mark for the first time in recent years. -Press TV - 7/10/08

Blowback from a Strike on Iran
An embarrassing aspect of the American pin-prick war against Iran is that many of its instruments were previously on the payroll of Saddam Hussein. The MEK even played a role in 1991 in helping to crush the uprising against the Baathist regime at the end of the Gulf war. -Counterpunch - 7/10/08

Solana to visit Iran for nuclear talks July 19: report
European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana will visit Tehran on July 19 for talks on Iran's contested nuclear drive, the semi-official Fars news agency reported on Wednesday. -AFP - 7/10/08

TODAY: National Call-in Day on Iran Blockade Resolution
Congress is considering this bill at this very moment; now is the time to act to oppose this plan for war. Groups from all over the country are joining together for a national call-in day on H.Con.Res. 362. - 7/9/08

Oppose the Congress' War Resolutions Against Iran
The U.S. House of Representatives is considering a resolution (HR 362) that calls on the Bush administration to take strong action against Iran, including a naval blockade of its ports. A similar resolution is being considered by the Senate (SR 580). -Muhammad Sahimi - 7/9/08

Iran Test Fires Medium-, Long-Range Missiles Amid Tensions with US, Israel
Iran says it has test fired nine long- and medium-range missiles "in response to threats coming from the United States and Israel." State-run Press TV said the missiles were fired by a unit of the elite Revolutionary Guards from an undisclosed location in the Iranian desert and included a Shahab-3 missile, with a 2,000-kilometer range, which was carrying a conventional warhead weighing one ton. - 7/9/08

Florida Unilaterally Restricts Travel to Iran
A law has been passed by the Florida legislature making it significantly more difficult for Iranian Americans to travel to Iran to visit family and friends. On June 23rd the Governor of Florida, Charlie Crist, signed into law SB 1310, which imposes heavy restrictions on Florida travel agencies that arrange trips to any "state sponsors of terrorism." -Farid Zareie and Patrick Disney, NIAC - 7/9/08

Basketball diplomacy: USA and Iran
When is a basketball game not just a basketball game? When an NBA team plays an Iranian team in, of all places, Salt Lake City. Call it the ‘Dunking for Diplomacy’ tour. -MSNBC - 7/9/08

Iran test-fires upgraded Shahab-3 missile
Iran test-fired nine long- and medium-range surface-to-surface missiles, including the upgraded version of the Shahab-3, in the Persian Gulf on Wednesday. -MNA - 7/9/08

HR 362 and the Alarming Escalation of Hostility Towards Iran
The current tension among political observers as to whether the U.S. and/or Israel will undertake military action against Iran before president Bush leaves office has been greatly intensified by the prospect that Congress will pass a frightening resolution, HR 362, as early as this week. -Common Dreams - 7/9/08

Armenian monasteries in Iran added to UNESCO's World Heritage List
Fortified Armenian monasteries in Iran were added to the new sites inscribed on UNESCO's World Heritage List on 6 July. - 7/9/08

Is Iran Currently an Existential Threat to the United States?
In a new analysis released today comparing the conventional military capabilities of the United States and Iran, experts at the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation conclude that the current threat posed by Iran is exaggerated by conflating it with Iran's potential, but far from certain, acquisition of a nuclear weapon in the future. - 7/9/08

US Government announces actions against Iranian individuals and companies accused of weapons proliferation
On July 8 the US Government announced further actions against Iranian individuals and companies it accuses of nuclear and missile proliferation activities. Following is the full release from U.S. Department of State. - 7/9/08

Iran lowers its caviar export quota
Iran has voluntarily reduced its caviar export quota amid concerns about dwindling sturgeon populations in the Caspian Sea. - 7/9/08

Will the U.S. Support Terrorists to Destabilize Iran?
Elements of the Bush administration have begun to resemble semi-insane Captain Queeg in "The Caine Mutiny" with regard to Iran. Reckless and obsessive to destroy Iran’s regime, they fondle their ball bearings, and pursue any scheme that they believe will get rid of the mullahs before the inauguration of the new American president in January 2009. -William O. Beeman,, New American Media - 7/9/08

IRAN: Did IAEA Revive Uranium Paper Issue Under Pressure?
A 15-page paper on the process requirements for casting and machining of uranium metal into hemispherical forms -- said to be useful only for making the core of a nuclear weapon -- has been raised by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in recent months as evidence of an alleged Iranian intention to built nuclear weapons. -Gareth Porter, IPS - 7/9/08

Iran: Spare Four Youths From Execution
Today 24 international and regional human rights organizations called on Iranian authorities to spare four youths facing execution and to stop imposing the death penalty for crimes committed by juvenile offenders -HRW - 7/9/08

Britain must act to prevent an attack on Iran
All the evidence suggests that an Israeli attack on Iran's nuclear sites would be a disaster for the greater Middle East, for the world economy and for western security. It would not even benefit Israel, which is adequately protected by its own nuclear deterrent. On the contrary, by creating new links between Sunni and Shia extremism, it would worsen Israel's long-term chances of survival. -Financial Times - 7/9/08

The Iran Question
Meanwhile, the war drum will continue to beat - the hollower the louder. As Washington and Tel Aviv keep letting it be known that “all options are on the table”, and the Unites States Navy embarks on yet another set of war exercises in the Persian Gulf, their Iranian counterparts thump their own chests and threaten to annihilate the enemy in case of any attack upon Iran. -Kam Zarrabi - 7/8/08

IDB Award for Saideh Ghods, the Mahak chief
Mahak is a non-governmental organization dedicated to caring for children with cancer in Iran. It runs a large hospital in northern Tehran on private donations. Among Mahak's many successes I would like to inform you of one of its recent ones. -Syma Sayyah, Tehran - 7/8/08

Photos: Poppy Flowers in Kkansar, Iran
Khansar is one of the counties of Esfahan Province in Iran. The name khansar comes from the Avestan language. Khun means spring and sar means place, so khansar means place of the spring. The photos presented here are taken from the Valley poppies in Khansar. - 7/8/08

Building Connections at Camp Ayandeh 2008
Iranian Alliances Across Borders is pleased to announce the success of its third annual Iranian-American leadership camp, Camp Ayandeh. Camp Ayandeh took place during the week of June 22-June 28th, 2008 at Emory University in Atlanta, GA. With 70 campers and 31 counselors and staff, this year marks IAAB's largest camp group yet. - 7/8/08

Americans Don't Know: There's A Plan On The Table To End The Nuclear Standoff
Here's what those promoting military attacks and blockades on Iran don't want Americans to know: there's an offer on the table that could resolve the dispute over Iran 's nuclear program and allow both sides to claim victory. -Just Foreign Policy - 7/8/08

How do Iranians react to threat of attack?
The latest report by Seymour Hersh in The New Yorker confirmed that the US is involved in counterinsurgency and black ops inside Iranian territory. The report came out just weeks after the AIPAC policy conference, where presidential hopeful John McCain told crowds that a nuclear-armed Iran is a danger we cannot allow and that Iran poses an existential threat to the state of Israel, underlining his camp's demonizing of Iran. -The Real News Network - 7/8/08

HConRes 362: Blockading Iran to war
Markets have been watching every move of President Bush and the Israeli government to decipher whether war with Iran is in the making. Few expected, however, that the equivalent of a green light for war would come from our Democratic-controlled Congress. -Prof. Cyrus Bina and Col. Sam Gardiner - 7/8/08

Iran crowned Asian wrestling champ
Iranian youth freestyle wrestling team has clinched the Asian wrestling championship on Sunday at the Doha Aspire Sports Center in the Qatari capital. -MNA - 7/8/08

Reading Solana in Tehran
Conciliatory noises from Tehran over the nuclear issue have left Washington and Brussels baffled, and unconvinced of Iran's intentions. Having grown accustomed to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's uncompromising language, Tehran's new tone has raised more suspicion than hope among cynics in Western capitals. -Trita Parsi, IPS - 7/8/08

US Says Iran Appears to Debate Nuclear Incentives Package
The United States says Iranian officials appear to be debating how to respond to an international offer to suspend a key part of its nuclear program. - 7/8/08

'Iran leaks reflect conflict in US administration'
The recent spate of leaks and reports from Washington about whether Israel will, or should, take military action against Iran, and what that would mean for the US, is a reflection of deep divisions on the matter inside the Bush administration, Israeli diplomatic and defense officials said Sunday. -Jerusalem Post - 7/8/08

Radio Farda Consolidates Management
The Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) will consolidate the management of Radio Farda under Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) as of July 7, 2008. RFE/RL and the Voice of America (VOA) had jointly operated this Persian-language radio and Internet service since its inception in December 2002. - 7/8/08

Iran ready to become D8 energy supplier: Ahmadinejad
"The Islamic Republic is ready to fairly meet the D8 countries' energy demands in an effort to alleviate the people's pain and suffering," he told reporters ahead of the 6th summit of the D8 group, which opens in Kuala Lumpur on Tuesday. -MNA - 7/8/08

Melli Bank Plc seeks suspension of EU sanctions
Melli Bank Plc on Tuesday started legal proceedings at London's High Court against comprehensive sanctions imposed by the EU to freeze its accounts. - 7/8/08

If There Was Any Doubt about Where the Pentagon Stands on Iran
It was dispelled Wednesday by Adm. Mike Mullen, who repeatedly made clear that he opposes an attack on Iran — whether by Israel or his own forces — and, moreover, favors dialogue with Tehran. While various media have printed or run excerpts of his press conference, I think it might be useful to post virtually all of his remarks regarding Iran just to illustrate how clear he was -Jim Lobe, Antiwar - 7/8/08

Foreign companies line up for Iran's third mobile operator bid
"Several companies from Russia, China, South Korea, Indonesia, India, Kuwait, and the UAE have offered their proposals for winning Iran's third mobile operator bid," the director of the international affairs department of the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology stated on Monday. -MNA - 7/8/08

In The Spotlight: Persian Scholarship Funds
To help outstanding but financially constrained Iranian or Iranian-American students pursue higher education in the U.S., several Iranian-American philanthropists have set up scholarship funds in recent years. Dozens of Iranian students have benefited from such funds and the figures are growing. - 7/7/08

Tirgan Festival CEO Talks to Salam Toronto
Today, there are a myriad of activities in and around the Toronto area pertaining to Persian culture. Talks, music concerts, live theatre, dance competitions, dinners, festivals; at times there is enough going on that the typical Iranian-Canadian living in the Greater Toronto Area can sometimes find that they have too many options. -Azim Ahmed - 7/7/08

Conference: Omar Khayyam, Edward FitzGerald and The Rubaiyat
This week-long conference (6th - 10th July, 2009) to be held at Leyden and Cambridge celebrates the 200th anniversary of the birth of Edward FitzGerald (1809) and the 150th anniversary of the first publication of his famous Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam (1859). - 7/7/08

Iran bans celebs from appearing in ads
The Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance has prohibited Iranian artists, sports personalities, and cultural figures from appearing in advertisements. - 7/7/08

Iran protests U.S. visa denial to blind athletes
Head of Iran's Blind Sports Federation criticized the U.S. official because of refusing to issue visas for Iranian powerlifting team which was scheduled to participate in the world championship in Miami. -MNA - 7/7/08

Tehran Mayor Qalibaf Ranked Among World's Top Mayors
Tehran Mayor Mohammad-Baqer Qalibaf is among eleven candidates of best world mayors after the public voting for World Mayor 2008 recently ended - 7/7/08

Bush, Medvedev Agree on Iran, Not Missile Defense
U.S. President George Bush and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev say they are united in trying to convince Iran to stop enriching uranium, but remain divided over American plans for a missile defense system in Eastern Europe. -VOA - 7/7/08

F-5 jet crashes in southwest Iran
An Iranian F-5 fighter jet has reportedly crashed while landing at the Omideh military base in the southwestern province of Khuzestan. -Press TV - 7/7/08

Rice To Sign Radar Deal In Prague
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice visits Prague on July 8 to sign an accord on building a controversial U.S. radar installation in the Czech Republic. -RFE - 7/7/08

Iran's Leaders Divided on U.S.
A senior adviser to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has rejected a proposed expansion of the U.S. diplomatic presence in Iran, saying in an interview that the idea is a "propaganda pose." -Washington Post - 7/7/08

Iranian swimmer Alirezaei makes history in FINA ranking
Iranian swimmer has made history in the 50 meters breaststroke world ranking released by FINA World Swimming on Sunday. Mohammad Alirezaei ranked 26th as the first Iranian who finds himself in the spot. -MNA - 7/6/08

Photos: Morality Police crack down in Tehran
In June 2008, Iran's Morality Police began a new phase in their campaign against Western-style clothing and hairstyles. Women are being arrested if their headscarves do not fully cover their hair or their clothes show their figures too clearly. - 7/6/08

52 Iranian athletes to participate in Beijing 2008 Olympic Games
Iranian athletes will take part in a number of events including free style and Greco-Roman wrestling, taekwondo, judo, power lifting, archery, boating, cycling, table tennis, boxing and basketball. - 7/6/08

Board of Directors of PAAIA Fund Elected for Two Year Term
On June 12, 2008, PAAIA's Board of Directors unanimously voted to elect Jamsheed Ameri, Hamid Biglari, Ali Ebrahimi, Mohammad Kashani-Sabet, Firouz Naderi and Vali Nasr as members of the Board of Directors of PAAIA Fund for a two year term. - 7/6/08

Iran football team to camp in Spain
Iran's football team is scheduled to travel to Spanish city of Marbella on July 10 to hold a preparatory camp prior to the final round of the 2010 World Cup qualifications. - 7/6/08

Iran's flag to be hoisted at North Pole
Iranian Hamid Jodeiri Khodashenas will be hoisting Iran's three-colored flag at the North Pole for the first time. -MNA - 7/6/08

Mini-series explores the inner workings of Saddam Hussein's family and his relationship with his closest advisers -Darius KADIVAR - 7/6/08

Former Agent Says CIA Ignored Findings on Iran
A former CIA operative who says he tried to warn the agency about faulty intelligence on Iraqi weapons programs now says that CIA officials also ignored evidence that Iran had suspended work on a nuclear bomb. -Washington Post - 7/6/08

Citizenship truly sweet, despite long, bitter fight
Mohammed Reza Ghaffarpour believed his path to citizenship would be smooth after he aced his 2003 English and U.S. history exam and received a letter saying he was being recommended for approval. -Chicago Tribune - 7/6/08

Bush's Last Fourth
Irony abounds in President George W. Bush's decision to speak at Monticello, the home of Thomas Jefferson, on the last July 4th that he will occupy the Oval Office. For it was Jefferson who wrote in America's Declaration of Independence that "a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires" the colonies to set forth the reasons for their rebellion before a "candid world." -William Scott Harrop and R.K. Ramazani - 7/5/08

New Anti-war Network Rejects Threats Against Iran
Responding to a call by a new network named the National Assembly to End the Iraq War and Occupation, some 300 anti-war leaders from a broad array of U.S.-based organizations gathered in Cleveland, Ohio, June 28 and 29. -CASMII US - 7/5/08

Iranian woman Taekwondo fighter wins gold medal
Female Iranian Taekwondo fighter, Sara Khoshjamal-Fekri, has won the gold medal at an international Taekwondo tournament in South Korea. -Press TV - 7/5/08

Iran wins Asian judo championship
The Iranian judo team has earned the 1st place podium at the 9th Asian Youth Judo Championships held in the Yemeni capital of Sana'a. -Press TV - 7/5/08

Iran will close Strait of Hormuz if interests threatened: top commander
In case Iran's interests in the region are jeopardized, it will shut down the strategic Strait of Hormuz and will not allow the others to use it, Iranian Armed Forces Chief of Staff Major General Hassan Firuzabadi warned here on Saturday. - 7/5/08

Netherlands bans Iranian students from nuclear studies
The government of the Netherlands has announced plans to ban Iranian students from studying nuclear technology at Dutch universities. - 7/5/08

Speaking of U.S. Covert Operations Against Iran
Just as the sanctions only make the average citizens suffer and not the elite it is targeted at, so covert operations are just going to get a lot of people killed and solidify the position of those in power who can use unity against foreign interference and threat of imminent attack to overcome dissidence thus producing the exact opposite effect of what the US administration desires. -Brian H. Appleton, California - 7/5/08

Iranian wrestlers on top at the Asian Junior Wrestling Championships
The Iranian squad bagged four gold, two silver and one bronze medal to win the title gaining 72 points at the championship. -IRNA - 7/5/08

IRAN: Seeking spiritual advice on nuclear technology
As world powers studied Iran's response to a package of proposals meant to convince it to stop enriching uranium, a curious series of meetings took place today in Iran. -Los Angeles Times - 7/5/08

Director complains about disruption to his plan for Flight 655 film
Iranian director Saeid Asadi said that his plans for making a film on the USS Vincennes attack on an Iranian airliner in 1988 have been sidetracked for 14 years. However, he refused to refer to a specific person or organization. -MNA - 7/5/08

Another Nail in the NPT Coffin
Garold Larson has the misfortune to be the Bush-Cheney Deputy Permanent Representative to the Conference on Disarmament, and hence, was required to "celebrate" the 40th anniversary of the Treaty on Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons. -Gordon Prather, Antiwar - 7/5/08

Iran sells over $15b of cars in fiscal year: official
Deputy Iranian minister of industries and mines here on Saturday announced that Iran has sold $15 billion worth of cars over the past fiscal year. - 7/5/08

IRAQ: Ministry report details impact of violence on minorities
A new report by Iraq's Ministry of Human Rights sets out the number of deaths in different ethnic communities caused by direct or indirect attacks in Iraq between 2003 and the end of 2007, and the numbers of internally displaced persons (IDPs) for each minority. -IRIN - 7/5/08

Iran responds to 5+1 group's letter: official
Tehran on Friday delivered its response to the six world powers' letter on ending the West's prolonged nuclear standoff with the Islamic Republic, an informed official at the Foreign Ministry told the Mehr News Agency. - 7/4/08

Women's Theater Festival pays tribute to stage veterans
Winners of the Seventh Women's Theater Festival were announced in Tehran on Wednesday in a ceremony held at Tehran's City Theater Complex. - 7/4/08

PAAIA Sponsors Teacher's Workshop on Iran
On July 8 - 11, 2008, the World Affairs Council of America will hold its annual Summer Teacher Workshop in Washington, D.C. This year, through a PAAIA sponsorship, the topic for the workshop will be "Persia"or "Iran" - 7/4/08

My Brief Encounter with Shahbanou Farah Pahlavi of Iran: It was a particularly cloudy afternoon in Paris and the weather was hesitating between rain showers and rare moments of sunshine that displayed a beautiful rainbow above the Trocadero Plaza overlooking the Eiffel Tower. -Darius KADIVAR - 7/4/08

The secret war in Iran: Seymour Hersh on Cheney and manufacturing consent on Iran
In this three part interview with Paul Jay, Hersh says that a Gallup poll suggests that most Americans would rather the nation talk to Iran rather than go to war, in light of the current conditions in Afghanistan and Iraq. - 7/4/08

Afshin Ghotbi takes charge of Tehran's Persepolis Football team
Afshin Ghotbi was appointed as Persepolis coach on Thursday, according to the club's officials. - 7/4/08

Iran's inflation rate 21%, liquidity $174b, Central Bank says
Central Bank of the Islamic Republic of Iran put the inflation rate for the fiscal year ended June 20, 2008 at 20.7 percent. -MNA - 7/4/08

US Expert: No Easy Options for Dealing With Iran Nukes
One day after Iran's foreign minister downplayed the likelihood of a U.S. or Israeli strike against his country's nuclear facilities, a prominent Washington-based expert on the Middle East says there are no easy options for preventing Iran from developing nuclear weapons. VOA's Michael Bowman has details. - 7/4/08

Tremor hits Kadekan in northeast Iran for 2nd time in 2 days
An earthquake measuring 5.3 degrees on open-ended Richter scale shook the vicinity of Kadekan in center of Razavi Khorassan Province Friday morning. -IRNA - 7/4/08

Analysts: End to Rising Oil Prices Not in Sight
The price of oil has hit an all-time high in London, rising above $146 a barrel, with New York crude prices not far behind. Tendai Maphosa reports for VOA from London analysts do not see an end to the price increases anytime soon. - 7/4/08

Exhibition by Iranian Women Artists: Berkeley, California - July 4-6
In recognition and appreciation of Iranian women artists and in celebration of their work, The Iranian Women's Studies Foundation (IWSF) will hold an Art Exhibition in conjunction with the 19th IWSF 2008 International Conference in Berkeley, California. - 7/3/08

Iran's Academicians Call for Long-lasting Peace
In a moving statement, a group of academics from Iranian universities have expressed their strong opposition to the intensifying economic sanctions against Iran and the harmful suspense of "neither war, nor peace", demanding unequivocal and long-lasting peace. -CASMII - 7/3/08

PAAIA and IAPAC Host Fundraisers for Darius Shahinfar in Washington DC and New York
With the 2008 elections fast approaching, Iranian Americans are once again demonstrating their growing influence in the American electoral arena by rallying behind the candidacy of Darius Shahinfar. Shahinfar is a first generation American of Iranian descent who is running as a Democrat for New York's 21st Congressional District seat being vacated by Representative Mike McNulty (D-NY). - 7/3/08

Taliban in robe versus Iranian Heritage
In June 2006, U.S. District Court Judge Blanche M. Manning ruled to seize Persian antiquities on loan to the University of Chicago's and Chogha Mish collection at the Oriental Institute, as well as the Herzfeld collections kept in the Field museum in Chicago, on behalf of victims of a 1997 Jerusalem terror bombing. -Bahram Bahrami - 7/3/08

Photos: Air Pollution Hits Shiraz, The City of Flowers, Poets and Love
Shiraz is the fifth most populated city in Iran and the capital of Fars Province. Shiraz is located in the southwest of Iran on the Rudkhaneye Khoshk seasonal river. Shiraz has a moderate climate and has been a regional trade center for more than a thousand years. - 7/3/08

Slavin on Iran, Identity, and Influence
"An Iraqi would see himself as an Iraqi first, a Shiite second, and an Arab third; an Iranian would see himself as an Iranian first, an Iranian second, and an Iranian third." This comment on the identity of Shiite Muslims was made by United States Institute of Peace fellow Barbara Slavin during the June 20 presentation of her new USIP report titled, Mullahs, Money, and Militias: How Iran Exerts Its Influence in the Middle East on Capitol Hill. -Arash Hadjialiloo - 7/3/08

U.S. downing of Flight 655 was state-sponsored terrorism: analyst
The U.S. Navy's guided missile cruiser USS Vincennes, shot down Iran Air Flight 655 over the Persian Gulf on July 3, 1988, killing all 290 passengers and crew members, including 66 children. - 7/3/08

U.S., Iran Downplay Talk Of War Over Nuclear Dispute
U.S. President George W. Bush continues to insist that both military and diplomatic options remain on the table as Washington tries to convince Iran to end its uranium-enrichment program. - 7/3/08

Iran fights scourge of addiction in plain view, stressing treatment
More than a million Iranians are addicted to some form of opium, heroin or other opium derivative, according to the government, and some estimates run as high as 10 million. -IHT - 7/3/08

Will the U.S. open an office in Iran?
With President Bush trying to burnish his diplomatic credentials on a series of fronts, the State Department is pushing the envelope by suggesting it may be time to open a permanent American presence in – of all places – Tehran. -CSM - 7/3/08

Iran urges investment in oil, gas sectors
Iranian Oil Minister Gholam-Hossein Nozari called on Wednesday for making proper investments in various oil and gas sectors. He made the remarks in a meeting with Spain's Minister of Industry, Tourism and Commerce Miguel Sebastian held on the sidelines of the 19th World Petroleum Congress. -IRNA - 7/3/08

Iraqi FM Says Security Pact With US 'Almost Finalized'
Hoshyar Zebari said Wednesday that Washington has shown, in his words, a "great deal of flexibility" in the negotiations. Both sides hope to reach a deal this month that would allow U.S. troops to remain in Iraq after their U.N. mandate expires in December. -VOA - 7/3/08

An American Gone Missing in Iran: Interview with Christine Levinson about her husband's case and the family's ordeal
Iranians are famous for being very hospitable people. There is a saying in Persian that says guest is God's friend. So the disappearance of Robert (Bob) Levinson, an American on a private visit to the Kish island in Persian Gulf, is quite surprising, disturbing and mind-boggling. - 7/2/08

Cheers to Shiraz
Sitting on the patio at an Irish pub on King Street in downtown Toronto with half-empty glasses of red wine, waiting for nachos, we talk wine. Sauvignon, Merlot, or Shiraz. Sweet or dry. Mature or young. On colour we can agree, but everything else led to controversy. A ceasefire begins only when I started talking about my favourite type of wine. I prefer Shiraz -- not because of its taste, but because of the name. -Shabnam Janani - 7/2/08

Sara Mobayen: A talented young photographer
Sara Mobayen is a talented young lady who has taken some magnificent pictures of the children she has come across in the eastern part of Iran near the border with Afghanistan. We went to her exhibition "Dust and Dream"ť at the Golestan gallery where we met the famous Mrs Lili Golestan who has helped and encouraged so much young talent since she started her gallery over 20 years ago -Syma Sayyah, Tehran - 7/2/08

Internship Opportunities with Mashhad Positive Club
Mashhad Positive Club (Registered as Hamyaran Mosbat Shargh, Non-Financial and Non-Political Organization) was established in May 2007 in the northeastern city of Mashhad in Iran. MPC focuses on HIV and Positive Prevention activities and is in partnership with UN agencies, NGOs and government bodies. - 7/2/08

Iran will consider opening US interest section, direct flights
"Contacts between Iranians and the American people will be a useful step for better understanding of the two nations," Iranian FM told reporters in New York. The foreign minister who is currently in New York to attend a meeting of Economic and Social Council of the United Nations on June 30-July 3 added that Iran advocates academic and sports exchanges between the two countries. - 7/2/08

Interview with Iran's Ambassador to IAEA
Mohammad Kamaali, board member of CASMII UK speaks to Iran's Ambassador to the IAEA Dr Ali Asghar Soltanieh who was recently in London to attend an international conference on a Middle East Weapons of Mass Destruction Free Zone, organised by the School of Oriental and African Studies, SOAS. - 7/2/08

The alternative to an Israeli attack on Iran
Is war between Israel and Iran inevitable? To listen to Iran's radical President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, or Israel's Iranian-born transportation minister Shaul Mofaz, or even recent reports that Israel carried out a major military training mission over the Mediterranean to rehearse an attack on Iran, you might be left with that impression. -Shlomo Ben-Ami and Trita Parsi, CSM - 7/2/08

Softer tone from Iran has experts guessing
Iranian officials on Tuesday continued their long history of befuddling Western diplomats, as two top officials sounded conciliatory notes about the prospects of eventually breaching the impasse between the West and Tehran over the country's nuclear ambitions. -IHT - 7/2/08

US Military Chief Says Any Attack on Iran Would be Destabilizing
The top U.S. military officer says more diplomacy is needed to convince Iran not to develop nuclear weapons, because any military strike would have unforeseeable consequences and could end up putting considerable stress on U.S. forces. VOA's Al Pessin reports from the Pentagon. - 7/2/08

US: We will react if Iran shuts oil flow
The US Naval Forces Central Command says the international community will rapidly react if Iran shuts down the strategic Hormuz Strait. - 7/2/08

Iran ascends in FIFA ranking
Iran's soccer team has ascended 11 places in the recently released FIFA ranking on Wednesday. -MNA - 7/2/08

Oil minister: Iran to give strong response to any military attack
Oil Minister Gholam Hossein Nozari said on Wednesday that the Islamic Republic of Iran is to give a powerful response to any military attack which might launched by the US or the Zionist regime. -IRNA - 7/2/08

Iran to export 10,000 cars to Azerbaijan
The Middle East's largest automaker, Iran Khodro, has signed a 73-million-dollar contract with Azerbaijan on the export of Samand. -Press TV - 7/2/08

US, Iran: Empty threats
Though drama-addicted audiences love to hear the media expound on a US strike against Iran, those in the know have long ceased to take 'leaked' US threats seriously. -ISN - 7/2/08

Turkey's Ruling Party In Court Fight For Survival
Turkey's top court is beginning hearings in a case that seeks to ban the ruling party for allegedly trying to undermine secularism. The Justice and Development (AK) party has its roots in political Islam, but its leaders deny it has an Islamist agenda. -RFE - 7/2/08

Photos: Women Olympiad Opening Ceremonies in Tehran
Capital city Tehran is holding its third annual Women Olympiad. Women from different neighborhoods of Tehran will be competing in the events. Following photos are from the opening ceremonies of the Olympiad. - 7/1/08

Photos: Masouleh Village, Gilan Province, Iran
Masouleh is a village in the Gilan Province of Iran. Historical names for the village include Mâsalar and Khortâb. It was founded in the 10th century AD, and its current population is estimated to be around 800 persons. -photos by Maryam & Marzieh Hosseini, Tehran - 7/1/08

Will Congress Start a War With Iran?
Our U.S. House of Representatives is currently considering a naval blockade of Iran. Without the authorization of the United Nations, which the resolution does not call for, this will be considered an act of war. H.CON.RES 362 already has 169 co-sponsors. -Jes & Leslie, A Journey for Peace and Freedom - 7/1/08

Seymour Hersh: Congress Agreed to Bush Request to Fund Major Escalation in Secret Operations Against Iran
Democracy Now's Amy Goodman interviews Seymour Hersh on his recent explosive piece - 7/1/08

Habeas Ruling can Aid America's Global Image
The US Supreme Court decision of June 12, 2008 to extend habeas corpus, the power of courts to review detention by the executive, to Guantanamo Bay detainees improves America's world image and enhances its security. -R. K. Ramazani - 7/1/08

The Impact of Electoral Trends on Iran's Security Policies
It is common for politicians and the media to concentrate on the threat that Iran poses to the rest of the world. However, little in-depth thought tends to be given to the state's internal political situation. This was not the case last Thursday when experts on Iran met to talk about electoral trends in Iran and their impact on policy -Julia Murray, NIAC - 7/1/08

Obama's Palestinian problem
In his 4 June speech to the American Israeli Political Action Committee (AIPAC), Democratic Party candidate Barack Obama betrayed the hopes that had been invested in him, writes Hamid Dabashi - 7/1/08

Archaeology conference on Persian Gulf opens in UK
A two-day conference on the pre-history and history of the Persian Gulf opened at Durham University in northern England Tuesday. - 7/1/08

Terror Case Judge: Iran Must Identify U.S. Assets
In an apparently unprecedented move, a federal judge in Chicago is ordering the government of Iran to comply with the requests of terrorism victims that the Islamic nation identify of all of its real estate holdings, financial assets, and other property in America. -New York Sun - 7/1/08

Encyclopedia Iranica criticizes closure of Iranian Studies Institute in Italy
Encyclopedia Iranica Institute in a letter to Italian President Giorgio Napolitano voiced their criticism against closure of Iranian Studies Institute in Italy. - 7/1/08

Pentagon Official Warns of Israeli Attack on Iran
Senior Pentagon officials are concerned that Israel could carry out an attack on Iran's nuclear facilities before the end of the year, an action that would have enormous security and economic repercussions for the United States and the rest of the world. -ABC News - 7/1/08

Exhibition in Dubai: 'Iran Today' by Elham Moaidnia
Born in Isfahan, Iran, Elham Moaidnia communicates through her work by using Iranian symbols, expressive figures and scripts appearing as slogans. Her inspiration comes from observing contrasts in society and the life of man in today's world. - 7/1/08

Pride before a fall
Wth the US beating the war drums, Iran should carefully consider if its nuclear energy programme is worth the effort -Guardian - 7/1/08

Iran-China trade may hit $25B
Iran's ambassador to China says the value of trade between Iran and China is on the rise and may surpass $25 billion this year. -Press TV - 7/1/08

63 million people hold fixed, mobile phones in Iran: Minister
Iranian Minister of Telecommunications and Information Technology Mohammad Soleimani said on Tuesday that there are as many as 63 million fixed and mobile phone users in Iran. -IRNA - 7/1/08

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