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U.S. Middle East Policy toward Iran & International Solidarity PowerPoint Presentation
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U.S. Middle East Policy toward Iran & International Solidarity

U.S. Middle East Policy toward Iran & International Solidarity

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U.S. Middle East Policy toward Iran & International Solidarity

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  1. U.S. Middle East Policy toward Iran &International Solidarity Iranians for Peace & Justice – Connecticut www.iraniansforpeace.org Updated: 11/4/2005 Iranians for Peace & Justice

  2. Preview • A brief introduction to Iran’s history • Islamic Republic and the revolution of 1979 • An overview of U.S. policies toward Iran before and after the revolution • Recent nuclear dilemma with Iran • Western progressive movements and question of Iran Iranians for Peace and Justice

  3. Introduction – Overview [1] • Location: Middle East, bordering the Gulf of Oman, the Persian Gulf, and the Caspian Sea, between Iraq and Pakistan • Area: 1.648 million sq km – (almost size of Alaska) • land: 1.636 million sq km • water: 12,000 sq km • Ethnic groups: Persian 51%, Azeri 24%, Gilaki and Mazandarani 8%, Kurd 7%, Arab 3%, Lur 2%, Baloch 2%, Turkmen 2%, other 1% • Religions: Shi'a Muslim 89%, Sunni Muslim 10%, Zoroastrian, Jewish, Christian, and Baha'i 1% • Labor force: 15.4 million • agriculture 33%, industry 25%, services 42% • Industries: petroleum, petrochemicals, textiles, cement and other construction materials, food processing (particularly sugar refining and vegetable oil production), metal fabricating, armaments • Budget: $34.6 billion (revenues) Iranians for Peace and Justice

  4. The sea is estimated to be about 30 million years old; Completely landlocked; The area is rich in energy wealth: oil and natural gas; bountiful oil and gas reserves in the south lots of unexplored area [2] IRAN Strategic Importance of Iran In 2003, the vast majority (about 90%) of oil exported from the Persian Gulf transited by tanker through the 2-mile wide Strait of Hormuz; Iran claims that it reserves the option of closing off the shipping route if it is threatened [3] Persian Gulf Oil Exports by Route – 2003 (Millions Barrels per Day) Iranians for Peace and Justice

  5. A Glance at History • The history of Iran is full of conflicts between the ruling autocrats and popular movements • The first constitutional movement forced the monarch to accept an elected parliament nearly a century ago • In 1953, following a popular movement, the first legitimate and democratically-elected government of Dr. M. Mossadegh was established and Shah was forced to leave the country • In 1979, following a nation-wide revolution, the shah’s regime was overthrown; he was forced into exile, and Iran was declared an Islamic republic • The revolution had politicized the entire country • Overnight, hundreds of new leftist and pro-democracy organizations were created • Hundreds of thousands of new-found supporters joined these new organizations calling for a new economic foundation • Thousands of independent unions and councils were established in factories and work places Demanding complete control over production • Asking for better pay, benefits, and recognition of their independent organization by the government Iranians for Peace and Justice

  6. Post-Revolution and the New Islamic Regime • The new Islamic regime brought a new era of repression • Continuous chain killings, imprisonments, terror, and torture • Arrest and kidnapping of reporters, Censorship, closure of news papers, Political Prisoners and Crack down on the opposition • Massacre of 1988 • Enforcing barbarian judiciary law • Stoning • Qesas (Retribution: An eye for an eye ) • Broad system of discrimination against women and other minorities • Widespread assaults on freedom, expression, press, and religion • In spite of its anti-American rhetoric, the Islamic Regime of Iran managed to serve U.S. political interests • Brutal destruction all leftist groups • Complete halt of the revolutionary path to revise the economic system • Total elimination of independent councils and labor unions in factories and work places The Islamic Republic of Iran was the next-best-thing for the United States! Iranians for Peace and Justice

  7. U.S. Policies Toward Iran • After the revolution of 1979 the U.S. lost one of its most important allies • The U.S. government has never been interested in defending democracy in Iran • In 1953, the U.S. and Britain, through the CIA coup, overthrew the first legitimate and democratically-elected government of Dr. M. Mossadegh • The U.S. fully supported the Shah’s dictatorship as a puppet regime to protect American corporate interests in the region • While the IRI regime has been brutally destroying progressive movements for over two decades, the U.S. government never condemned the pro-democracy crackdown • The U.S. encouraged and fuelled one of the most devastating wars in the region between Iran and Iraq and helped BOTH sides! • A year after the massacre of 1988, the U.S. government called Hashemi Rafsanjani the leading reformist hoping for open door policies Iranians for Peace and Justice

  8. Bush Administration and U.S. Aggressions • Emphasis on pre-emptive aggression and establishing U.S. hegemony • Democracy • War on terror • Safer world • Remember: “First Baghdad, then Damascus, and finally Tehran”? • The U.S. starts representing the Islamic regime of Iran as an oppressive and dangerous government in the Middle East Iranians for Peace and Justice

  9. Is Iran Next Imperialism’s Victim? • Major problems facing the Bush administration • “Scooter” is indicted • “Rummy” is not terribly popular • “Dick” is under scrutiny • “Goergy” is facing his lowest public approval • Iraq policy has been labeled as “the greatest strategic disaster” [15] • American policy in Afghanistan has turned into a fiasco • U.S. dead has passed the 2,000 mark • Immediate attack on Iran appears to be less likely • Note that Iran has acted as a major mediator in Iraq • Of course, political madness is always an option U.S. continues to check international tolerance as it pressures Syria Iranians for Peace and Justice

  10. When faced with an unsolvable problem – expand the problem U.S. Options Toward Iran • Continuing to undermine its sovereignty • Preparing a new war-plan with Iran • Engaging in low-intensity ware-fare (preparing Iranian opposition military group in Iraq, using spy aircrafts, sending special forces into the country) • Inspiring and encouraging west-oriented groups to sabotage [11] • Pressuring Iran Politically • Letting Israel attack suspected nuclear facilities • Proposing sanction through UN security Council • China and Russia most likely will veto the resolution • Bypassing UN security Council and enforce an Euro-American sanction • Eventually, this may coerce other countries to join So, what is the big fuss about Iran’s nuclear program now? Iranians for Peace and Justice

  11. Dick Cheney Ford’s Chief of Staff Donald Rumsfeld Ford’s Sec. of Defence Paul Wolfowitz Ford’s ACDA The Nuclear Dilemma – Background [4] • The development of nuclear energy program in Iran goes back to 1950’s • In 1957, U.S. gifted the first civil nuclear agreement to Shah of Iran • In 1970, during the Ford administration, U.S. approved the sale of 8 nuclear reactors and lasers with capability for uranium enrichment • Shah’s regime refused signing the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) • First experimental nuclear reactor along with Uranium and Plutonium enrichment was developed during Shah’s regime • With only ¼ of today’s population, Iran’s access to nuclear power was fully justified by key players in the U.S. government Which Key Players? you may ask. Iranians for Peace and Justice ACDA: U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency

  12. You just can't trust some people! Iranians for Peace and Justice

  13. Remember the game of WMD in Iraq and how it was played by Hans Blix’s? The Nuclear Dilemma – Present • Following the revolution of 1979 in Iran, the Islamic Regime of Iran agreed to sign the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) • Iran agreed to international inspection denying any plans to develop nuclear weapons • In spite of Iran’s cooperation, the U.S. is forcing Iran to abide by coercive demands • El-Baradie, head of the IAEA, said: • “Iran has no nuclear weapons program” (Oct. 3, 2004) [6] • Months later, following removal of U.S. opposition to El-Baradie’s third term and his election, El-Baradie’s report states Iran had not cooperated and requires • access to individuals, documentation related to procurement, dual-use equipment, certain military-owned workshops and research and development locations [5] Iranians for Peace and Justice

  14. 200 Nuclear Warheads Maybe? Nuclear-Free Middle East? If Iran continues on its path, Central Asia and the Middle East, … may well be destabilised.  Other states would be likely to enhance their own capabilities. The NPT will be badly damaged, as will the goal of creating a WMD free zone in the Middle East, a cause to which we are committed. [7]  E.U. Security Chief Israel is said to be the world's sixth largest nuclear power [8-9] Iranians for Peace and Justice

  15. The Nuclear Dilemma – A Reality Check • For the last 20 years, Iran has been denied access to oil-production technology and heavy industrial equipment [11] • Most Western intelligence agencies estimate that Iran is three to five years away from being able to produce bombs from scratch [10] • U.S. policy toward Iran is in accordance with the Project for the New American Century • Seeking to establish American hegemony at any price! • Considering Iran as the grand prize in achieving in its global hegemony • If Iran goes, the Asian Energy Security Grid goes! • Israel considers Iran as the largest and most capable threat • “If they [Iran] can’t comply, Israel cannot live with Iran having a nuclear bomb” • Israel is in great need of energy resources • EU-3 (Germany, France, Britain) is just confused • It desires to limit countries accessing nuclear-weapons and nuclear enrichment • It does not see the possibility of military action against Iran • It Continues to participate in fraudulent diplomacy pushed by U.S. • Doing the bidding for the U.S. [14] Iranians for Peace and Justice

  16. U.S Policies and its Ramifications • For many Middle Easterners having nuclear power is considered as national pride! • Similar thoughts are shared by many Americans! • The hawks in Pentagon are still delusional • They believe limited military action can result in popular uprising! • Military action against Iran (by U.S. or Israel in any forms) • Could result in retaliation in form(s) of military, politically, or use of its international ties (including Hezbollah) • Leads to a popular resistance resulting in wide support for the Islamic regime and serious backlash against the U.S. • Strengthens the hardliners in the government and giving them an open invitation to once again destroy every political gains by the democratic movement • Legitimizes the fundamentalists in the region and weakens the progressive movement • Sanction can result in forcing Iran out of the NPT • Strengthens the Mullah’s regime • Makes more sense to keep Iran in the NPT and cheat than losing it! U.S. Liberating the Middle East Following Iraq fiasco, the U.S. has no credibility in the region! Iranians for Peace and Justice

  17. Can a Puppet Gov. Bring True Democracy to Iran? • In spite of its tyranny, economic changes during the last 20 years must not be oversight [16]* • In the last 20 years, the infant mortality rate has dropped from 91.6 per 1000 to 26 per 1000 • Life expectancy is now 69.8 for males and 71.5 for females, compared to 59 and 63 at the end of the era of the Shah • There are now almost three times as many physicians per 1000 than there were 20 years ago • The proportion of the population living under the poverty line has fallen significantly from 47% in 1978 to 15.5% now • Thanks to the progressive movement, Iranians live in the most pseudo-democratic society in the region • This is tributed to thousands of brave people sacrificing their lives and not the ruling regime • What is the alternative to all these by a U.S. backed puppet government? • Ask the people of Yugoslavia, Eastern Europe, Argentina, and Iraq! • Establishing a full-fledged colonial administration in the country (Bosnian model)[17] • Reconstructing the free-market and allowing IMF/World bank to take over the economy • Surrendering to corporate globalisation and its global political order does not establish democracy Iranians for Peace and Justice *Source: The United Nations Development Programme

  18. Western Progressive Movements and Iran Responsibilities Western Progressive Movements Dual Challenge B- Defend the progressive student-labor movement in Iran demanding democracy freedom A- Condemn US warmonger policies in the Middle East attempting to establish American hegemony at any price Without an assertive condemnation of Islamic Republic tyranny the Western progressive movement will alienate itself from the existing progressive pro-democracy movement in Iran Iranians for Peace and Justice

  19. A- Condemn any U.S. intervention in the Middle East • Understand that U.S. has no intention to establish peace in the region • U.S. remains to be the largest nuclear power in the world • U.S. is the only country that has ever used its nuclear power • U.S. is helping Israel to strengthen its nuclear power • U.S. represents the greatest threat to the Middle East security and stability • Show similarities in U.S. policies toward pre-occupied Iraq and Iran • Putting process over substance • Embracing a position which requires Iran to prove the negative [14] • Deceiving the international community • Manipulating UN and IAEA to play its game • Demand EU-3 to take position independent of U.S. hostile intentions • EU must understand that U.S. is preparing for war with Iran • EU must demand a non-discriminatory nuclear-free Middle East • EU must address U.S. threat to the Middle East • Support immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq • Call for a nuclear-free Middle East • NO country in the Middle East has the right to develop weapons of mass destruction • Having nuclear power is NOT a matter of national pride Iranians for Peace and Justice

  20. B- Actively Support the Progressive Movement of People of Iran • Support the democratic movement in Iran against the tyranny of Mullahs! • Support having an independent and democratic referendum in Iran • Demand freedom for all political prisoners in Iran • Support independent labor and student movements in Iran • Join the international support for human rights in Iran • Condemn the Islamic Regime of Iran and its human right violations • The danger posed by U.S. intervention should NOT be used to excuse the continued existence of repression in Iran • HR violations in Iran must NOT be covered up! Iranians for Peace and Justice

  21. References [1] http://geography.about.com/library/cia/blciran.htm [2] http://web.archive.org/web/20020605220706/http://www.wws.princeton.edu/~wws401c/1998/ [3] http://www.eia.doe.gov/emeu/cabs/pgulf.html [4] http://www.flonnet.com/fl2221/stories/20051021004602800.htm [5] http://www.nci.org/05nci/09/PLstatementOnElBaradeiReport.htm [6] http://www.aljazeera.com/cgi-bin/news_service/middle_east_full_story.asp?service_id=5051 [7] http://www.diplomatie.gouv.fr/actu/article.gb.asp?ART=50608 [8] http://www.fas.org/nuke/guide/israel/index.html [9] http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/3340639.stm [10] http://www.energybulletin.net/4634.html [11] http://www.newyorker.com/fact/content/?050124fa_fact - The Coming Wars - by SEYMOUR M. HERSH [12] http://www.newamericancentury.org/ [13] http://abolition2000europe.org/index.php?op=Default&postCategoryId=1&blogId=1 - Nuclear disarmament [14] http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/1A678E7E-2612-4B21-8D21-04E6D5FC5D54.htm (The Iran trap - Scott Ritter) [15] http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article10488.htm - Retired Gen. William Odom, currently a scholar with the Hudson Institute [16] http://www.youandaids.org/AsiaPacific/Iran.asp - The United Nations Development Programme [17] http://www.globalresearch.ca/articles/CHO202G.html - Dismantling Former Yugoslavia, Recolonizing Bosnia-Herzegovina by Michel Chossudovsky Iranians for Peace and Justice