Category Archives: Iran

02 Jan

How you gonna keep ‘em down on the farm?

“Do you need to be told that what has been can still be?” asked T.S. Eliot in his Choruses from the Rock (1934).

It seems a daft question which we answer emphatically, “Of course it can!” Not if you’re a Marxist though, for whom historical events are “inevitable.” So the communist revolution, the dictatorship of the proletariat and the punishment of the capitalists will all happen necessarily, as if decreed by the laws of the Medes and the Persians.

There, I’ve gone and done it and mentioned the Persians and so the mind turns to thoughts of Iran. Could it be that Iran is about to present us with one of those historical surprises which Karl Marx said do not and indeed cannot happen? And, if so, might this happening be a bit of good news – perhaps even a lot of good news – for a change?

For six days, Iranians have been protesting in the streets of towns and cities right across the country and so far at least twenty-one people have been killed in these disturbances. It’s hardly surprising that the population is discontented and unhappy. The cost of living has more than doubled in a decade. Unemployment stands at 12.6% and, crucially, 29.2% among young people. The average wage is about £60 per week and the minimum wage £4 per week.

Censorship of the press is ubiquitous and strictly enforced in Iran – one of the worst countries in the world to practise as a journalist. The Ministry of Islamic Guidance decrees what music the people are allowed to listen to and which plays and other entertainments they can enjoy. Discos and nightclubs are illegal and when their location is discovered by the religious police, they are closed down. Women are jailed for campaigning for the ordinary liberties which are taken for granted in the West.

It didn’t use to be so thoroughly oppressive. In the days of the Shah, before the Islamic revolution of 1979, Iranians enjoyed a lively and varied cultural existence. The government spent lavishly on the arts. There was music and dancing with wine and beer in the cafes.

Then arose the puritanical totalitarian Ayatollah Khomenei to breathe Islamic fundamentalism. And the land grew grey from his breath.

After 1979, everything looked set and fixed, as nicely and as inevitably as any Marxist could wish for. But, just as 16th century Europe was revolutionised by the invention of the printing press, so today’s world has been radically transformed by the Internet and social media. Of course, the mullahs in that Ministry of Islamic Guidance try to control this new media.

But they can’t. And a new question arises in succession that the one asked by T.S. Eliot. And the new question is the one asked in the (probably banned) popular song: “How you gonna keep ‘em down on the farm now that they’ve seen Paree?” Thanks to the new media, the Iranians – particularly the 70% under thirty – have glimpsed something like Paree and they will not go back into the shadows of sharia.

So, as we see, nothing is inevitable – not even the triumph of Islamic fundamentalism.

No doubt the Israelis and the Americans are making all efforts to encourage the Iranians who have seen the possibility of a change for the better.

I do hope that our man in the foreign office, Boris Johnson, will lend all his weight to this cause.

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18 Jan

Sell-out Saturday

I hope you had a good weekend and that you particularly enjoyed your Saturday – Sell-Out Saturday when the US ended all its earlier attempts to prevent Iran’s development of nuclear weapons. The deal was done in Vienna and there are many rumours in circulation about what went on there. One such rumour – and I have it on good authority – is that a consultant neurologist attending the US delegation found minute traces of mental activity in John Kerry. Anyway, the deal is done, sanctions are being lifted and Iran will be free to export its oil again and garner billions of dollars to bestow on its favourite charity: the sponsorship of terrorism worldwide.

How did the Great Verbiage Producer Barack Obama celebrate his sell-out?  Last July he celebrated the deal – then in draft – by making a speech (of course) in which he said what a jolly good deal it is and added that he would bypass the US Congress if representatives there dared vote against it. President Obama is the boss of America and so I suppose he should be allowed to celebrate as he likes. The boss of Iran is Ayatollah Khamenei. How did he celebrate the deal? He tweeted a drawing of Obama holding a pistol to his head, about to commit suicide. Tasteless as this is, it was the more appropriate celebration of the two because it perfectly illustrates the swindle that has been perpetrated upon the USA – and by extension the West – by the Iranian authorities who will now go full steam ahead with their nuclear enrichment programme until they are able to produce the atomic bomb. And how did Britain celebrate the nuclear sell-out? By re-opening our embassy in Tehran which had been closed since it was attacked and ransacked by an Iranian mob in 2011.

Here’s a bit more detail for you about that nuclear programme. Recent photographs of the Parchin military complex, eighteen miles southwest of Tehran, where for years Iran has worked on developing nuclear arms, show increased activity since the nuclear deal was reached in Vienna. Pictures taken on 26th July and analysed by the Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS) – a respected Washington think tank and not to be confused with the acronym for Islamic State – show a bulldozer at the base, as well as oil spills, which indicate heavy machinery at work.

“What the activity is precisely remains unknown,” said Serena Kelleher-Vergantini, an ISIS analyst. “But the concern is that Iran is potentially trying to get rid of any evidence of past experiments.”

What a surprise! But the next sentence I shall write in this blog is unbelievable – but true. The US and the other five world powers involved in the negotiations do not have access to the document containing the details of the nuclear deal. It was left to a US congressman to articulate the blinking obvious: that “side deals” have been done with Iran.

You have to admire Obama’s outstanding commitment to his policy of appeasement and sell-out. In a fresh development, Iran has been test launching long range missiles capable of delivering nuclear warheads. This is forbidden under the terms of earlier agreements. What did Obama do when he saw these launches? He threatened sanctions – only to withdraw his threat.

So Obama will have his phoney peace legacy and Iran will have its bomb.

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08 Aug

A bit on the side

It is only a couple of weeks since the swindle and deceit – sorry, I mean the transparent historic deal which will promote world peace – that allows Iran to develop nuclear weapons was announced. Already some of the predicted consequences are beginning to take effect.

New satellite images show Iran may be trying to scrub out evidence of its past nuclear experiments before international inspectors are allowed to investigate a controversial military facility.

Recent photographs of the Parchin military complex, eighteen miles southwest of Tehran, where for years Iran has worked on developing nuclear arms, show increased activity since the nuclear deal was reached in Vienna.

Pictures taken on 26th July and analysed by the Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS) – a respected Washington think tank and not to be confused with the acronym for Islamic State – show a bulldozer at the base, as well as oil spills, which indicate heavy machinery at work.

“What the activity is precisely remains unknown,” said Serena Kelleher-Vergantini, an ISIS analyst. “But the concern is that Iran is potentially trying to get rid of any evidence of past experiments.”

What a surprise!

Access to Parchin, a vast military base with a corner devoted to nuclear research, is one of the most controversial elements of the entire nuclear agreement.

(The next sentence I shall write in this article is unbelievable – but true.)

The US and the other five world powers involved in the negotiations do not have access to the document containing the details of the nuclear deal.

It was left to a US congressman to articulate the blinking obvious: that “side deals” have been done with Iran.

So the US Congress is suddenly waking up to the fact that the Iranian government has fooled the IAEA inspectors.

The director of the IAEA, Yukiya Amano, visited Congress last Wednesday to try to reassure senators but said his agency could not show them the details of the documents.

“My legal obligation is to protect safeguards and confidentiality,” he said, which, being interpreted, means We promised the Iranians we wouldn’t let the cat out of the bag.

Bob Corker, the Republican chair of the Senate’s foreign relations committee, said the meeting with the IAEA chief was “not reassuring.”

In plain language, this means that the West has signed up to deal while not knowing what’s in it and effectually the safety of the West has been entrusted to the dodgy bureaucrats who run the IAEA – and who, of course, will do exactly what Mr Obama tells them to do; neither more nor less.

So Obama will have his legacy and Iran will have its bomb.

Unfortunately for the rest of us, Obama’s legacy is worth about as much as Mr Chamberlain’s piece of paper. Munich is next door to Vienna, after all.

If we seek to know the reality behind Obama’s shady deal with the Mullahs – the same Mullahs, by the way, who even after the deal are still crying “Death to America and death to Israel!” – observe the reaction of those who are at the sharp end.

Obama’s criminal sell-out has been condemned not only by Israel – which country Iran has promised time and again to “wipe off the map” – but also by Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Jordan.

Neither Egypt nor the  Saudis can afford not to try to produce their own nuclear weapons. So now we can look forward to the bonus of a nuclear arms race in the Middle East, to add to the joys of that colourful region.

Observe also the faces of jubilant, well-heeled Iranians in their limousines as they give their V-signs to the West’s media, while shouting, “We won! You lost!.” No wonder they are grinning ear-to-ear. The deal guarantees the lifting of economic sanctions against Iran – thus providing an additional $150billion for Iran to spend on its main industry, which is the promotion of terrorism worldwide.

And, in the process, greatly increasing the wealth of the V-signers

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