February 15, 2006 VOLUME 21


To our readers,

February 11th, marked the 27th anniversary of 1979 revolution in Iran.  While Iranian women joined the public protests against the dictatorship of monarchists under Shah, their desire for a democratic Iran was not to replace Shah with fundamentalist mullahs.

The theocratic regime of mullahs has imprisoned and executed thousands of Iranian people in an extensive suppression that is rarely experienced anywhere else in the world. Mullahs have used the most savage forms of psychological and physical tortures on the political prisoners including rape of female political prisoners, stoning of women and execution of teenage girls and boys in public. In the last 5 months, according to governments’ official announcements, 150 people have been executed since Ahmadinejad took power.

Dr. Roya Tolouei, a human rights activist and reporter in Kurdistan, Iran; who was arrested last summer for taking part in a peaceful protest just fled the country. In her interview with Radio Farda she talks about the atrocities and the physical and mental torture inflicted on her by the interrogators in the prison. She appeals to the international community to take Iran to the United Nations Security Council first and foremost because of gross human rights violations because the nuclear program is not the only problem with that regime.

The recent turn of events with regards to Iran has placed the United States at a juncture where a firm policy on Iran is a necessity for the peace and stability of the region and the world. It is very clear that Iran’s continued defiance over its nuclear program, their support of terrorism and disturbing role and violent efforts to derail Iraq from any stability has created a very alarming situation. The world community now realizes that the fundamentalist regime in Tehran jeopardizes the peace and stability of the region if not the world.

Early this month, International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) voted to report Iran to UN Security Council. WFAFI welcomed this move and called upon the UN Security Council to also hold Tehran responsible for its gross violations of human rights, particularly state-sponsored violence against Iranian women.

In addition to a UN policy to curb Tehran’s danger, there must be a firm policy by the United States and the EU-3. More specifically, there must be a focus on Iranian women’s role and political agenda as it relates to a peaceful solution for a growing danger by the fundamentalist regime in Tehran.  

E-Zan Featured Headlines

NCR-Iran website – January 16, 2006

An Iranian woman who had recently fled the country told reporters that the regime in Iran has benefited from talks with the EU to build its nuclear weapon. "In the past two years the mullahs have not given any concession to the West and continued with their secret nuclear program. The non-conciliatory position of the regime makes it quite clear to everyone that the mullahs are not going to give up their plan to acquire nuclear weapon and negotiations only provide them with time to complete their project," said Sahar, a journalist from Tehran and a women's rights activist.


State-run Baztab Site – January 29, 2006

Between 10 to 15% of women who achieve management positions tend to face conflicts and force to become tough in a workplace. Dr. Majid Abhari (State-sponsor psychologist), said in an interview that “women tend to be gentler and softer in nature, so, it is difficult for them to be in management positions.” He added “those who make it to management face a dichotomy of being motherly and nurturing at home.” He concluded “in order to preserve the motherly nature of women, they must stay home and attend to their wifely or motherly duty”.


Radio Farda – February 1, 2006

Interview with an Iranian-Canadian female bus driver, Forough Hassani: The Iranian regime violates every international treaty and norm. We support the strikes of the Iranian bus drivers in Tehran. As the only female bus driver in Ottawa, I want to ensure their voice is heard. I am pushing to gain the support of various other unions and international organizations in support of Tehran’s bus drivers. We are concerned about the lives of those who have been arrested and the Iranian regime is known for pressuring their families and loved ones. In Iran, the voice of opposition is faced with torture and imprisonment. We need to join in solidarity with the union in Tehran and stand up against the regime.

[In a related story, The Iranian bus drivers, who belong to the 17,000-member Syndicate of Workers of the Tehran and Suburbs Bus Company (Sherkat-e Vahed), called the strike to protest the detention of union President Mansoor Osanloo and to demand that the government recognize their union. Osanloo and his entire executive board were arrested on December 22 during a union meeting. Police released the other leaders following a widely supported strike and pressure from international worker and human rights organizations, including the AFL-CIO.]


Italian AKI News Source – February 6, 2006

A 19-year-old Iranian journalist, Elham Foroutan, risks the death penalty for a satirical article in which she compares the Islamic revolution in Iran to the AIDS virus. Foroutan, wrote the article for the magazine, Tamaddon Hormozgan, a weekly which is published in Bandar Abbas, in the south of Iran. Foroutan, was arrested together with six editors of the magazine, whose publication has also been suspended.
In the piece, Foroutan compares the Islamic revolution to the spread of the AIDS virus, saying that it "arrived in
Iran in 1979", the year of the revolution led by Ayatollah Khomeni. In the article entitled "Make the fight against AIDS public", the reformist former president of Iran, Mohammad Khatami is described as "a remedy that allowed for the diffusion of the virus," while the current president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is "the virus in the first person", while the Pasdaran, the judicial authority and the ministry of intelligence, have been defined as the "diffusion centres". Tamaddon Hormozgan is owned by Ali Dirbaz, the parliamentarian who belongs to the Abadgaran faction which supports the current Iranian president. Ali Dirbaz took immediate action against the editors and in some statements to the media; he has also called for the death penalty for the journalist. Foroutan has been accused of insulting the founder of the Islamic Republic, an act that is punishable by death. In the meantime, the ministry of culture and Islamic orientation announced the imminent closing of 70 magazines which "do not respect the values of the revolution and express the concepts contrary to the principles of Islam".


State-run News Agency – February 6, 2006

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said that his government respects the women in the society not for the quantity of work they can do but rather for the quality of their social service. Speaking in a conference on 'Women, Ninth Government, Prospects for Future' at Interior Ministry's Hall, Ahmadinejad said that since the triumph of the Islamic Revolution, women have undertaken special role in different scenes including the Iraqi-imposed war (1980-1988) and the reconstruction era. "Both men and women are created by the Almighty. Woman is symbol of beauty of God and man is symbol of glory of God. The two are complementary to each other and help each other attain a lofty goal." He said that duty of each gender is in line with her/his capability adding that some tasks are special for women while others are for men and in the domains that the two genders can do a job…


Iran Focus– February 9, 2006

[Report on British parliament debate over Iran Policy, Baroness Gould of Potternewton]: As is so often the case, women are the first victims of the renewed crackdown by the ultra-Islamic radicals. Earlier this month, the president's adviser said that plans to enforce gender segregation on Iran's pedestrian walkways were well underway. The official said that this was part of a government plan called "Enhancing the hijab"—that is the veil—"culture and female chastity". When the president was the mayor of Tehran, he ordered all buildings belonging to the municipality to have separate lifts for men and women. I assume those lifts were actually working. In Iran, violence against women has been legalised and institutionalised by the state. A recent study conducted by the National Welfare Organisation found that two-thirds of Iranian women are victims of domestic violence. Iran remains one of the only countries in the world where women are stoned to death. Last year, the UN Special Rapporteur for Violence Against Women, Professor Ertürk, chastised Iran over what she said were abuses and discrimination built into the Islamic republic's laws. She wrote in her report:Iran’s laws do not provide protection for victims of domestic violence and make it difficult to escape violence through divorce". She also said that suffering wives face time-consuming judicial procedures and stigmatisation. At the same time as condemning the Iranian regime, we should be offering our support to Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, as did my noble friend Lord Temple-Morris, and the Iranian resistance for staying true to their goal of standing up for the basic rights of the Iranian people. As well as revealing to the world the mullahs' nuclear weapons programme, their terrorist atrocities carried out in various parts of the world and their interference in Iraq, the PMOI and the NCRI have been fundamentally the primary source of information concerning the Iranian regime.


E-Zan Featured Reports

Ravaged countries look to female leaders for healing

By Georgie Anne Geyer

January 18, 2006

WASHINGTON -- The spirits of many of us revive with hope every time an old year has passed. Those of us who share this strange malady (which puts hope above experience) get hysterically optimistic every New Year's Eve, awake with a headache on New Year's morn (which we mistakenly analyze as a positive signal from God) -- and then, within days, come out of it as sobered-up as ever.

Take this new year. On the heels of our New Year's hopes, Iran situation worsened, throwing our childish optimism in our faces.

We are dealing with someone who may be even more difficult than Saddam Hussein, who was merely a mass murderer without ideology. But the Iranian president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, a Spartan former mayor of Teheran, is a true follower of the apocalyptic Ayatollah Khomeini; he believes that the Mahdi who went into hiding in 941 A.D. will someday return and wipe out all non-Muslims. Speaking at the

United Nations recently, Ahmadinejad said he saw a "green light" illuminating his world -- which he wants, among other things, to turn into a nuclear-powered Iranian world. In fact, the Iranians have restarted research and testing in their nuclear plants, and have said as much to the

European Union, which had been negotiating with Iran for three years to exchange Teheran's nuclear ambitions (read: "nuclear bomb ambitions") for increased economic and political ties.

No soap! Now, even the Russian, the Chinese and the U.N.'s nuclear watchdogs fear there is a bomb in Iran's virulently anti-Israeli future -- and that the American war in Iraq has encouraged Iran's power ambitions by opening the Shiite south of Iraq to Iranian influence and union.

But wait just a minute: Let us pause and look around the world. We will see, on the other hand, some immensely hopeful developments that could not have been expected even a few years ago.

This week saw a handsome 54-year-old Chilean woman, Michelle Bachelet, elected president of "macho" Chile on the West Coast of Latin America; and the Harvard-trained Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, a stalwart woman dressed in an elegant white African costume, was sworn in as leader of Liberia. War-weary Liberians hailed her as the "Queen of Africa" and, sometimes, lest you forget, "The Iron Lady."

Both Liberia and (to a lesser degree) Chile have been caught up in testosterone-fueled convulsions such as Iran's today and in those endless male conflicts that have poisoned our universe and its better angels.

The new Liberian president inherits a nation afflicted by one of the most horrible civil wars in history, which ended in 2003. Trained by Libya's treacherous Muammar Khadafy, West African liberation "killers" went on a 14-year rampage in the country, cutting off arms and limbs of tens of thousands of the nation's youth. At her inauguration, the new president, who definitely gives out no-nonsense vibes, told the crowd there would be a "fundamental break with the past." Liberians in the audience saw her in an interesting way: Over and over, they said things like, "She is our Ma and is going to take care of us."

The idea of a materfamilias political policy -- which will sternly keep the "boys" in line and rebuild, rather than destroy -- is new in Liberia after all the brutal male "Papa" warlords.

The Chilean situation is far from Liberia's. But Chile, too, went through a brutal period, from 1973 to 1987, when the Chilean military, having overturned a Marxist regime, waged a political war of terror against the people even while it brilliantly put the economy in top order.

New President Bachelet clearly sees her job as bringing "change with continuity" to the country. At her inauguration this week, she recalled how, during those 14 awful years of the military junta, her father, a general, was killed in prison, while she was herself imprisoned, tortured and exiled. "I was a victim of hatred, and I have dedicated my life to reversing that hatred," she said at her swearing-in. Although a socialist, she supports the country's free-market economy and looks as though she will be competent to blend her old ideology and the new.

Two things come to mind here. The modern world, if it is to be sane, is going to have to be much more of a woman's world than a man's. The operative words today are not kill, but negotiate; not hate, but understand; not riot, but institutionalize. As it happens, these two women represent sanity in the aftermath of horror, the amelioration of hatred and the beginning of forgiveness, the end (at least for their two countries) of fanaticism. But in Iran, even after the 1980s war with Iraq in which at least a million people were killed, even after the total failure of Khomeiniism and even after the brutalizing of the Persian people, the traditionalist male traits still reign supreme, promising more of the terrible past. The least you can wonder -- and not for the first time -- is whether we don't need more women running the world.

150 Women committed Suicide in Western Azerbaijan / Reporters of Kurdish Human Rights Organization

Didgah website

January 2006

In the past few months 150 women have committed suicide in Western Azerbaijan.

The Women’s Rights committee of the Kurdish Human Rights Organization has recently submitted the names of 150 women to our reporting committee who committed suicide or set themselves on fire because of violence inflicted on them by their families or by the society in Western Azerbaijan (a Kurdish province of Iran). The list put together by the Women’s committee includes First Name, Last Name, Age, Birthday, Marital Status, Job and Family Status, Literacy Level, Education and Date of their Suicide.  The first names and last name initials of the women in the list are as follows:

Kaniav A, Halima A, Jamileh K, Kobra D, Sheida A, Hayat C, Helaleh H, Nishtman M, Soroudeh R, Leili S, Ameneh S, Nasrin G, Jamileh G, Manijeh A, Shalir R, Maryam A, Golchin D, Mastooreh A, Nahid A, Maryam R, Hanifeh B, Shahin D, Rooy K, Pari A, Shalir M, Golaleh M, Nazanin S, Maryam K, Chiman H, Kobra A, Pari M, Zohreh S, Manijeh P, Fatemeh P, Negar P, Parvin D, Elahe R, Shilan B, Golbagh J, Kordestan R, Shahnaz A, Golchin K, Sara K, Parvin S, Parizad H, Mahpareh M, Chiman A, Ronak Y, Laleh J, Shabnam K, Asrin C, Esmat A, Kajal B, Zahra M, Shirin P, Nazila K, Ayesheh C, Fatemeh G, Kobra T, Chiman D, Tooran A, Tooran T, Shahla M, Midia B, Pari A, Maryam K, Soghra M, Tooba S, Sima K, Maryam A, Nishtiman M, Soraya A, Hajar A, Nosrat S, Azar R, Pari S, Maryam M, Lavin A, Parinaz A, Khadijeh K, Homeira J, Roghieh R, Nahid A, Amenh S, Khadijeh S, Mina B, Zeinab H, Mojgan V, Kajal Z, Manijeh H, Jamileh R, Fatemeh B, Sima K, Helaleh G, Kobra M, Zahra M, Sham J, Khadijeh P, Leila G, Bayaneh B, Zeinab G, Afsaneh G, Maryam H, Fatemeh K, Farideh R, Nashmil M, Bahareh S, Mehri T, Rana K, Shahla G, Shirin M, Leila H, Helaleh G, Shiler T, Shadi K, Esrin S, Zeinab P, Sanoor G, Kordestan A, Tahnian N, Shabnam S, Kolsum M, Vafa S, Soheila A, Zeinab Z, Sarchel P, Nishteman N, Zeinab P, Nazdar C, Khatoon G, Kosar K, Elham F, Bahar B, Tayebeh M, Masoumeh R, Shahin A, Susan M, Masoumeh M, Homeira R, Narmin S, Elnaz N, Maryam A, Shabnam A, Somayeh M.

Based on the information received, the women who committed suicide were mainly between the ages of 14 and 30 with low levels of literacy; high school diploma was the highest education level among them. Almost all of them were home makers and about 50 percent were married. Some of these women could not be saved and lost their lives.


Iran: Kurdish Women's Rights Activist Claims She Was Tortured In Prison
By Golnaz Esfandiari and Farin Assemi
30 January 2006

Roya Toloui and several other Kurdish human-rights activists were jailed following protests in several Kurdish cities against the killing of a young Kurdish activist, Shivan Qaderi, by Iranian security agents in July.

"It’s very difficult for me to talk about [what I went through. I'm partly worried that women who are actively involved in the women's movement would fear that they could face torture in case of arrest. But my message to all Iranian women who fight for their rights is that their struggle should [continue] with courage."

Qaderi Protest

Protestors had called on the government to arrest Qaderi's killers and put them on trial. During some of the protests government buildings and offices were attacked. Human Rights Watch (HRW) reported that during the protests government forces killed at least 17 people. Many others were arrested. In August, HRW called on the Iranian government to conduct a full and impartial investigation into the "violent response " to the protests in Kurdish cities. HRW said that the government opened fire on demonstrators protesting the killing of Qaderi. Local journalists and activists, including Toloui, had reportedly criticized the wave of repression that followed the unrest. Toloui who had been summoned to court on several occasions in connection with her human-rights work, and was arrested in her home in Sanandaj on 2 August. Human Rights First, a U.S.-based rights group which campaigned for the release of Toloui, describes her as a vocal critic of the Iran government's policies on minority and gender issues. The Writers in Prison Committee of the International PEN had also expressed serious concern about Toloui's arrest and called for her release. She was released in October after having spent more than two months in prison, including 17 days in solitary confinement, she said.

Charged With Several Crimes

She told Radio Farda in a 27 January interview that authorities brought many charges against her ranging from "acting against Iran's national interest " to " disturbing public order." "In total they brought [at least 10] charges against me," she said. "Anything not considered a crime against others was a crime when it came to me, for example the publication of my book in the Kurdish language in Iraq's [Al-Sulaymaniyah] was considered a crime. There were other charges, the most important of which is acting against national security and also giving interviews to different foreign radio stations was considered propagating lies against the establishment."  Toloui, who is currently outside Iran, added that her interrogators were putting pressure on her to confess that she was one of the main organizers of the protests that erupted in the wake of Qaderi's murder in Sanandaj and other Kurdish cities. "They wanted me to make a [written] confession, they were forcing me to confess," Toloui said. "I wrote that I will speak only in the presence of my lawyer and they laughed at me. I wrote that this is against human rights and that I had the right to see my lawyer. They lost their patience and they ordered that my children should be brought in and they threatened me and said that they will burn my children alive in front of my eyes."

Torture Claims

Toloui added that she was also subjected to physical torture that included beatings. She did not want to elaborate. Her claims of torture cannot be independently verified.

"During the night of 6 August, Kurdistan's deputy prosecutor, Amiri (no first name available), personally tortured me in the most brutal ways and subjected me to such behaviors that cannot be expressed," she said.

Toloui told Radio Farda that she was later transferred to a prison where convicted murderers and drug traffickers are held. She claims the transfer was a move aimed at putting her under more pressure. But she added that despite her difficult time in jail she refuses to be silenced. She says the international community is focusing its attention on Iran's controversial nuclear activities while more attention should be paid to human rights abuses that are occurring inside the country.  "I was tortured and I want to complain about it to all of the world's human rights organizations," she said. "I say the Islamic Republic should not be taken to the UN Security Council only because of its nuclear issue but our main problem -- the main issue of the Iranian people -- is the abuse of their rights and pressure from the regime."
Toloui is one of the signatories of a letter signed and published last year by women's rights groups, personalities and activists that calls for a change in
Iran's Constitution in order to guarantee equal rights for women and men.  Toloui says she is now concerned that her fate could create fear and concern among other women's rights activists who are fighting for more rights and freedom.  "It’s very difficult for me to talk about [what I went through]," Toloui said. "I'm partly worried that women who are actively involved in the women's movement would fear that they could face torture in case of arrest. But my message to all Iranian women who fight for their rights is that their struggle should [continue] with courage.

Human rights organizations and activists say torture is prevalent in Iran's prisons. In July, Iran's hard-line judiciary acknowledged -- in an unprecedented report -- that human-rights abuses, including torture, have in some cases taken place in prisons and detention centers.


Multi Track Strategy to the Tehran-problem

By Ramesh Sepehrrad

February 13, 2006

Global Politician

In the past several months pundits and analysts have attempted to provide roadmaps for change in Iran. While some ideas are settling in the minds of Americans, the results are real. More than half of Americans are now prepared to face some kind of confrontation with Iran; to curb its nuclear weapons drive and end its support for international terrorism. Remarkably, beyond popular reason, some analysts still advocate fostering behavioral change through engaging fundamentalist clerics with an "all carrots, no stick" approach. More coherent pundits favor of non-military-style change, by funding Iranian groups and their exiled satellite programs. The least appealing of all is the call for overt military strikes against Tehran's political, economic and nuclear interests. Unfortunately, none will entirely solve the free world's Tehran problem. Test
Tehran has become far too dangerous to the well being of its own citizens, regional stability, and the democratic ambitions of Iraqi people. The diversity of conclusions withstanding, the speed of growth of the Tehran's threat is the reason for a national consensus on the need to act. Most agree, the status-quo in Iran is no longer an option yet before conclusions are drawn, we should keep a few hard-learned facts in mind. First, we must not ignore lessons learned from an Iraqi-style military actions or futile rapprochement. Both options are just as reckless and detrimental to meaningful change in Iran. Second, a clear assessment of Iranian opposition forces is a prerequisite to any discussion that will tip a "velvet" or "orange" revolution in Iran. That said, the choices for fostering change in Iran may seem limited to the good (fund satellite broadcasts), the bad (military attacks) or the ugly (appeasement).

Fortunately, the policy quagmire outlined above is an illusion rooted in the ephemeral scope of its authors. The real solution for change in Iran is revealed when one looks to people inside the country who are capable to shoulder the changes the community of nations so desperately seeks. This approach requires political resolve and concrete actions to qualify well meaning statements such as "support women and youth", "support pro-democracy forces", and "stand with Iranian people". Now is the time to show resolve, in order to steer us all away from the worst case scenarios of nuclear conflict. To do so, the West must pursue a parallel path. One path should be toward the development of a Tehran-policy that represents rejection of the regime and the other is the collective effort of the international community, engineered specifically to isolate and eventually eliminate the root causes of the Tehran-problem.

Washington's leadership was essential in reporting Tehran to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC). This was a leap in a right direction. To this day, Tehran continues to flout the international community with its nuclear ambitions, therefore the International Atomic Energy Agency's (IAEA) Board of Governors submission of Iran to the UNSC should be followed by calls for smart sanctions. Imposing sanctions on Tehran is a necessary step; however, we should be cognizant of its limitations. Sanctions by themselves are not good enough. More importantly, a clear policy on Tehran must in place in Washington, Paris, London, and Berlin before a concerted effort; beyond sanctions, can take shape internationally. To compliment the sanctions, U.S. and the EU-3 must take immediate steps to develop a robust Tehran-policy geared toward change of regime in Iran. To begin, Washington must adopt a policy that includes the following components:
1. Tighten and codify existing US sanctions, bar subsidiaries of U.S. companies from doing business in Iran and cut foreign aid to countries that have businesses investing in Iran. Publicly and privately criticize governments engaged in oil, arms, technological, diplomatic relations with
Iran. In a bi-partisan effort, Congresswoman Ros-Lehtinen is pushing for a robust Tehran-policy. She recently told Reuters that: "There is a growing restlessness at a bipartisan level in the House to get tougher on Iran and I think that that's going to build up even more".
Senate Majority leader, Bill Frist, also linked the success of US sanctions to a broader international effort. In his Los Angeles Times op-ed piece he said: "We should persuade other countries to follow our lead. A multinational sanctions regime might begin with an embargo on technologies that
Iran can use in its nuclear program". He added "the full spectrum of measures the U.S. has in place to isolate Iran." More than 350 members of congress have called for a more qualified and stronger sanction. It is time to announce it as component of official US policy on Tehran and urge EU-3 to do the same.

2. Open direct dialogue with Iran's main opposition groups. Isolate Tehran's regime by cutting all private talks and make them worry about US's political preference in having talks with the opposition. Specific steps in this area must include lifting the political and legal ban on the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) and Mujahedin-e-Khalq (MeK). These groups have raised international awareness on Tehran's human rights records since the 80's, terrorism and regional interference along with missile technology since the 90's and illegal nuclear activities in recent years. So, it behooves Washington to open and have a direct dialogue with such influential opposition groups. Not to know what Iran's opposition, the NCRI/MeK, is thinking and doing is not only bad diplomacy but also foolish politics. With an ability to maintain an active network inside and outside of Iran, one can easily measure NCRI/MeK effectiveness and seriousness in changing the regime in Tehran. In a published Whitepaper by Iran Policy Committee, a Washington-based think tank, an 8-month study on Tehran's fear of its opposition placed MeK at the highest rating among all groups. Members of Congress and Europe's Parliamentarians routinely hold talks and engage with the representatives of the NCRI and the MeK. Administration officials could certainly benefit from similar engagements.
3. End Tehran's growing influence in Iraq by encouraging and empowering the progressive and anti-fundamentalist forces in Iraq including the Shiia, Sunni, Kurdish and any other Iraqi religious and ethnic groupings networked with the Iranian anti-fundamentalist MeK. Early this year, more than 12,000 Iraqi Jurists and lawyers declared and emphasized a nationwide support for the MeK and their 40 years of struggle against two dictatorships in
Tehran. For the sake of stability, peace and security in the region, Tehran's role must end in Iraq. As an Iraqi political expert, Dr. Rashid Al-Jubori, recently outlined in his Washington Times op-ed piece "The Iranians like to portray Iraqi Shiites as seeking an Iranian-style regime. However, developments in the last two years, particularly the last 10 months, must be seen as an organized bid to spread Iran's influence in Iraq by taking advantage of a gap in U.S. policy and political imbalance in Iraq... The Iranian regime has decided that, with its progress meddling in Iraq, it has paralyzed and neutralized the international community." Strategically and tactically, empowering an anti-fundamentalist coalition in Iraq would serve as the best buffer against Tehran's increasing influence the region.
There is little time left for
Washington to act. Similar steps must be taken by Paris, London, and Berlin. Having policies aligned with rhetoric in place will indeed urge others like Russia, China and India to take extra steps in isolating Tehran.

The steps mentioned are actions that constitute the political resolve to qualify declarations in support of Iranian people. Tehran's terror has gone beyond Iranian boarders and world's Tehran-problem is far too complex to be resolved just by funding exiled satellite programs. Moreover, Tehran's regime is too inherently brutal for a "velvet" or "orange" revolution to take place in the streets. However, a country specific policy as mentioned above, in coordination with international efforts is likely to facilitate the prerequisite conditions for positive change in Iran by the Iranian people.

Given time and solid relations between the West and Iran's main opposition, we might forecast that the United Nations could move beyond sanctions and impose an internationally monitored referendum on Tehran's regime, as proposed by NCRI's leader, Maryam Rajavi. Indeed, the world community can assist in a democratic revolution in Iran without violence. In the past, Iran's civil society has taken on the ruling regimes in the street with protests and civil disobedience. Once coupled with NCRI/MeK's organized and highly effective network inside and abroad, this democracy movement will ultimately bring the regime down faster than our nation's pundits and analysts might imagine.

In short, yes, that sums up an Iranian solution to the Tehran-problem. Honestly, if it's not an Iranian solution, how likely are the Iranian people to adopt it?


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Volume 21, February 15, 2006

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