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« Reply #15 on: June 17, 2006, 10:00:10 AM »

 Iraq's neighboring states FMs to attend conference in Tehran
Tehran, June 17, IRNA

Iran-Iraq-Conference
A conference of foreign ministers of Iraq's neighboring states plus Egypt would be held in Tehran from July 8-9, Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said here Saturday.

Mottaki made the remark while speaking to reporters after a meeting with Leader of the United Iraqi Alliance and Head of the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI), Abdul Aziz al-Hakim, who is currently on a visit to Iran.

"We sent invitations to (Iraqi) neighboring states and Egypt.

The conference can send a clear message to all countries," he said.

Pointing to ongoing visit by Hakim to Tehran, he added, "During meetings, the two sides discussed bilateral relations between Iran and Iraq.

"They also exchanged views on seven important documents which have been approved by the two countries' high council for cooperation in the fields of energy, oil and gas pipeline, electricity, Iran's participation in Iraq's reconstruction and border trade."

The Iranian minister urged all regional countries to help establish security in Iraq, saying, "Terrorist acts in Iraq are not limited just to this country but will damage all states in the region."

Iraq's neighboring states FMs to attend conference in Tehran Grin

My note; After reading this, I am really LOOKING UP!!  Ezekiel 38 & 39
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« Reply #16 on: June 17, 2006, 10:47:04 AM »

Iran, Syria sign defense agreement

Allies to cooperate against 'common threats' posed by Israel, US; discuss 'ridding region of weapons of mass destruction'

Defense ministers from close allies Iran and Syria have signed an agreement for military cooperation against what they called the "common threats" presented by Israel and the United States.

In a joint press conference, Iranian Defense Minister Mostafa Mohammad Najjar and visiting Syrian counterpart Hassan Turkmani said their talks had been aimed at consolidating their defense efforts and strengthening support for one another.

"Our cooperation is based on a strategic pact and unity against common threats. We can have a common front against Israel's threats," Turkmani told reporters Thursday after two intensive rounds of talks with Najjar.

"Our cooperation with the Iranians against Israeli threats is nothing secret and we regularly consult about this with our friends," he said.

According to the London-based Arabic newspaper al-Hayat, the Syrian minister told his Iranian counterpart that his country was interested in purchasing antiaircraft missiles, T-72 tanks, short-range Scud missiles and missile launchers from Tehran.

Before the press conference, Iran's defense ministry said the two sides "stressed strengthening mutual ties and the necessity to preserve peace and stability in the region."

The defense ministry statement also said they discussed "ridding the region of weapons of mass destruction," in an apparent reference to the widely held belief that Israel possesses nuclear warheads.

United against 'US threats'

Asked about US threats against Damascus and Tehran, both top brass brushed off the importance of such threats.

"This is nothing new, we will resist these threats," the Syrian defense minister said.

However, Turkmani dismissed the possibility of hosting an Iranian military base on Syrian soil.

"The language of a (foreign) military base in our country is alien to us. I want to say that it is not on the agenda," he added.

The Iranian defense minister said: "US threats are a kind of psychological operation. It is not new. With unity among the region's nations, these threats will not prevail."

Although the two refused to give specifics about the agreement for military cooperation, Najjar said Iran "considers Syria's security its own security, and we consider our defense capabilities to be those of Syria."

'Iran no danger to region'

Najjar also shrugged off reports that Iran could pose a threat to the region.

"Iran is ready to sign a non aggression pact with regional countries," he said.

"Our military warfare equipment is based on deterrent policies and strategy. Enemies should know about our capabilities and should not even think about an assault against us," he said in response to a question about the optimization process going on for the medium range Shahab-3 missile.

Iran's Shahab-3 missiles have a range of 2,000 kilometers (1,280 miles), capable of hitting arch-enemy Israel and US bases across the Middle East.

Najjar added that the Syrian side has purchased some Iranian military equipment, but did not elaborate on the purchased items and did not say whether the purchases were made as part of Thursday's agreement.

Turkmani started an official visit to Tehran on Sunday.

During his trip, Turkmani has also met with President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the Islamic republic's military chiefs and visited Iranian military factories in Isfahan and Tehran.

Iran, Syria sign defense agreement
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« Reply #17 on: June 17, 2006, 09:31:19 PM »

 Turkish parliamentary delegation to depart for Tehran
Ankara, June 17, IRNA

Turkey-Parliament-Cooperation
A 10-member Turkish parliamentary delegation headed by the Turkish Chairman of Iran-Turkey Parliamentary Friendship Group, Ahmet Inal, is due to depart for Tehran late Saturday.


The delegation comprising of members of the joint parliamentary friendship group and some members of Turkish parliament will visit Iran in response to the invitation by the Iranian head of group, Ali-Akbar Aghaei.

During its stay in Tehran, the delegation is scheduled to confer with Majlis Speaker Gholam-Ali Haddad Adel and head of Majlis Foreign Policy and National Security Commission Alaeddin Boroujerdi.

At the meetings, the two sides will discuss ways of expanding and strengthening friendly ties between the two states, in particular the inter-parliamentary bonds.

Besides, the latest regional and international developments will be high on the Turkish delegation's agenda.

More than 140 MPs from Turkish parliament are members of Iran-Turkey Parliamentary Friendship Group. Turkey's parliament has 550 members.

Turkish parliamentary delegation to depart for Tehran

My note; And now, you have a chief of the north, meeting with Gog.
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« Reply #18 on: June 18, 2006, 05:03:12 PM »

 India, Russia defense talks successful
New Delhi, June 18, IRNA

India-Russia-Defense Talks
Talks between India and Russia on a wide range of issues, including long-term defense projects with Deputy Prime Minister and Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov have been very successful, announced Indian Defense Secretary Shekhar Dutt.

Dutt said that Ivanov was upbeat on Indo-Russian defense relationship adding that they had 'very purposeful and useful talks on a whole range of issue' Doordarshan News said here on Sunday.

He, however, did not divulge the details of his parleys, saying that Indo-Russian defense cooperation had many long-term programs and their implementation was reviewed during his talks with Ivanov.

Dutt was on a four-day Russia visit during which he visited St.

Petersburg and Severodvinsk to review progress on the upgradation of Kiev class aircraft carrier Admiral Gorshkov acquired by India.

He said that Russia is scheduled to deliver the ship in the autumn of 2008 along with deck-based MiG-29k fighters.

Dutt had detailed discussion on the Gorshkov upgradation with St.

Petersburg-based Nevsky Design Bureau, the brain behind making the last century's warship into a formidable man-of-war of the 21st century.

Dutt said that Gorshkov had undergone so many changes that its old designers would not be able to recognize it. "It would be a totally new, a unique aircraft carrier."
He said he was impressed by the work being done at the Sevmash naval shipyard in Severodvinsk.

India, Russia defense talks successful
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« Reply #19 on: June 18, 2006, 05:05:41 PM »

Iran willing to expand ties with all Muslim states
Tehran, June 18, IRNA

Iran-Ahmadinejad-Relations
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in a meeting with Moroccan Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation Mohamed Benaissa here Sunday said that Iran's definite policy is based on expansion of multifaceted ties with all Islamic states.

According to a report released by the Presidential Office media department, the chief executive said that Iran is prepared to cooperate with Morocco in fields of common interest and transfer its experience in various economic, development and cultural domains to Islamic countries, including Morocco.

Turning to favorable bilateral ties, the president said, "Given the numerous common capacities for expansion of relations and particular positions of both states in the Middle East and North Africa respectively, Iran and Morocco can plat an effective role in the Muslim states unity."
Ahmadinejad pointed to various energy reserves and efficient manpower of the world of Islam and said that the Islamic states should complement each other, adding that they should attempt to defend the Muslims interests as well as promote the global peace and security.

He urged that the world of Islam deserves to enjoy its proper stance and underlined that some bullying powers are against Muslims advancement and intend to prevent Muslim nations progress.

This is particularly true about the Iranian nations, given their resistance and their being a forerunner in scientific and economic domains, he added.

"Iran's access to nuclear technology for peaceful purposes is a sign of the progress of all Muslims. The Iranian nation will defend its inalienable rights in all fields, including its nuclear program, with logic and patience," he added.

For his part, Benaissa submitted the written message of Morocco's King Mohamed VI to his Iranian counterpart, referred to Iran as a big and powerful country and said his country is willing to use all of its potentials to expand ties with Iran.

The minister expressed satisfaction with Iran's progress in various sectors and its access to nuclear technology for peaceful application.

He underlined that Morocco welcomes Iran's achievements and expressed his country's will to benefit from the outcome of Iranians progress in all fields.

Iran willing to expand ties with all Muslim states
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« Reply #20 on: June 19, 2006, 05:02:11 PM »

Monday, June 19, 2006. Issue 3434. Page 4.
   
'We Cannot Sit Around,' Putin Says
The Associated Press

ALMATY, Kazakhstan -- President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Hu Jintao on Saturday called for a multilateral approach to problems in Asia at a security summit hosted by Kazakhstan.

"We cannot sit around given the threats and challenges that the countries of Asia are facing today," Putin said at the one-day gathering of the Conference on Interactions and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia, or CICA.

He cited terrorism, bird flu and AIDS as chief concerns.

Delegates repeatedly issued calls for peace at the summit of the 18-member group, which last met in 2002 and is intended to serve as a platform for dialogue on Asia's drawn-out conflicts and other security issues.

Still, the meeting came amid reminders of long-running conflicts in the region: escalating violence in Sri Lanka, reported preparations by North Korea to test-fire a long-range missile that could reach as far as the U.S. mainland, and fighting with insurgents in Afghanistan.

"It is important to have a multilateral approach in the region," Hu said.

The participants signed a declaration after the meeting pledging to step up joint efforts to fight terrorism, organized crime, separatism and drug-trafficking.

It expressed support for UN reforms and the election of an Asian candidate as UN secretary-general.
   

Among the group's members are longtime adversaries and negotiating partners such as India and Pakistan, and Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

Israeli Vice Prime Minister Shimon Peres said that Israel and the Palestinians were closer to peace than they had been in the past 50 years, but added that the pace of the two sides' movement toward peace was "very slow."

Afghan President Hamid Karzai pledged to strengthen border control to curb the drug flow out of his country.

Uzbek President Islam Karimov used the summit to criticize the West for its condemnation of his bloody suppression of the Andijan uprising last year, slamming "the universal use of double standards" in world politics.

Karimov also deplored unnamed countries for "ignorance" and disrespect for other cultures by "linking international terrorism to the sacred religion of Muslims, Islam."

Other CICA members are the other Central Asian nations, Mongolia and Thailand. South Korea become the group's new member on Saturday.

The leaders signed an agreement on creating a permanent secretariat to be based in Almaty.

'We Cannot Sit Around,' Putin Says
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« Reply #21 on: June 19, 2006, 05:04:12 PM »

PA AWAITS IRANIAN AIRCRAFT

GAZA CITY [MENL] -- The Palestinian Authority has been awaiting aircraft and combat vehicles from Iran.

Palestinian Foreign Minister Mahmoud Zahar said Iran has been preparing to deliver two aircraft and 300 vehicles to the PA. Zahar said Iran would soon send the platforms to the Gaza Strip.

Zahar did not identify the aircraft or vehicles. But officials said the platforms would include helicopters as well as cars for the police and security forces.

Iran has also pledged $50 million to the PA. Zahar suggested that the money would be brought to the Gaza Strip by Hamas couriers.

PA AWAITS IRANIAN AIRCRAFT
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« Reply #22 on: June 19, 2006, 05:06:20 PM »

Iran`s Revolutionary Guards to deploy on Israel’s Golan border by summer’s end

June 19, 2006, 11:57 AM (GMT+02:00)

Iranian defense minister Gen. Mustafa Najjar said: “Syria’s security is part of Iran’s security,” when he signed a new military treaty with his visiting Syrian counterpart, Gen. Hassan Turkmani (picture) in Tehran last Thursday June 15.

Sunday, June 18, Israel’s parliamentary foreign affairs and defense committee inspected its northern border, along with the deputy chief of staff Moshe Kaplinsky and OC Northern command Udi Adam. Both Tehran and Damascus referred to the tour as Israel’s response to their new treaty.

DEBKAfile’s military sources add: At the signing ceremony, the Syrian official waved away reporters’ questions on whether Iran would be establishing a military base in Syria – “The language of a (foreign) military base in our country is alien to us. I want to say that it is not on the agenda.”

Nonetheless, military sources note that he rejected the term “bases” - but did not rule out “foreign forces” in nSyrian bases, which Persian Gulf and Pakistani military sources are certain was agreed secretly between the two countries. They have learned that Iran has offered to deploy Revolutionary Guards on the Golan border with Israel by the end of summer, because as Najjar said at the signing: “We have a common front against Israel’s threats.”

DEBKAfile’s Tehran sources disclose the Iranians seek to attain three objectives by deploying RG units to the Golan heights:

1. Another direct front line against Israel.

2. A forward position for an Iranian electronic warning station to sound a timely alarm of the takeoff of American warplanes or missiles from the eastern Mediterranean basin on their way to attack.

3. The station can also keep electronic track of movements on Israeli air and missile bases, covering also Arrow anti-missile missile systems.

The Syrian military delegation, which spent five days in Tehran, brought a year of secret negotiations to their conclusion. The breadth of Syrian-Iranian military relations can be measured by the military treaty’s financial scope of $800 m and the size of the delegation Damascus sent to Tehran - 60 officers representing every branch of the Syrian armed forces, including intelligence and munitions industries.

For years, both countries have supported the Lebanese Hezbollah militia and anti-Israeli Palestinian factions including Hamas and Islamic Jihad, which maintain headquarters in Damascus

Iran`s Revolutionary Guards to deploy on Israel’s Golan border by summer’s end
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« Reply #23 on: June 19, 2006, 05:10:12 PM »

Quote
Iran`s Revolutionary Guards to deploy on Israel’s Golan border by summer’s end

All I can say is WOW!!!!!  Ezekiel 38 and 39 are starting to be played out before our eyes!!!!
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« Reply #24 on: June 20, 2006, 02:00:12 AM »

Iranian 'agents' active on Lebanon border

Tuesday, June 20, 2006 - ©2005 IranMania.com

LONDON, June 20 (IranMania) - More and more Iranian "agents" are active on the Lebanese side of the border with Israel, in support of Shiite militiamen, an Israeli general said, AFP reported.

"There are more and more Iranian agents, soldiers or intelligence service members, in the immediate vicinity of the Israeli border," General Alon Friedman, who is posted in the region, told reporters.

He said Iranian operatives were previously deployed in areas further north, away from the border.

But now they "carry out inspection tours, patrols and give instructions" to the Iranian-backed Hezbollah militia, which controls the Lebanese side of the border, he said.

Iranian 'agents' active on Lebanon border
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« Reply #25 on: June 20, 2006, 07:03:56 AM »

Russia Did Not Give UN Complete Data on its Weapons Export

Created: 20.06.2006 11:29 MSK (GMT +3), Updated: 11:33 MSK, 3 hours 26 minutes ago

MosNews

The UN published official data on Russian export of conventional weapons for 2005. The data, provided by the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, mentions the volume of exports supplied even to countries that are not usually commented on by Russian officials, namely China. However, experts estimate the UN Register of Conventional Arms (UNROCA) for 2005 lacks data on Russian weapons export to the amount of minimum $1.2 billion, Kommersant daily reported Tuesday.

On the whole, data which Russia handed over to UNROCA confirmed on-the-record statements of Russian officials in the sphere of military and technical cooperation. The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs provided the data for UNROCA, having collected it from the Russian Federal Service of Military and Technical cooperation — the government’s mediator for Rosoboronexport — and from enterprises that have the right for the independent export of weapons.

Despite the fact that a large part of the data concerns state secrets, Russia nevertheless passed data to the UN on supplies even to those countries with which it has non-disclosure agreements, such as China, Vietnam, and partially with India and Algeria. Russian officials steadily maintain that “weapons export to such countries as China is not commented upon.”

According to UNROCA data, the major buyer of Russian weapons in 2005 remained to be China, and the main export item was equipment for naval forces. Thus, Beijing received seven warships from Russia in 2005. Apparently, six of them were Project 636M submarines as China had signed a contract with Russia for eight submarines in 2002. Experts of the Center for Analysis of Strategy and Technology (CAST) estimated the total cost of the six vessels at $1.5 billion. The seventh vessel for China is the Project 956EM destroyer Taijou. Two ships of this type of the total cost of $1.4 billion were contracted by Beijing in January 2002. The second destroyer will be delivered to China in 2006.

Yet, independent experts believe that UNROCA does not possess complete information on Russian weapons exports. “There were cases when Russian suppliers presented incomplete data on their annual total to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs,” explained CAST expert Dmitry Vasiliev. “The hovercraft Project 12061E assault landing ship Murena for South Korea, two S-300PMU-1 systems for Vietnam, and antitank missile systems for Eritrea and Oman, for instance, were not included into 2005 report.” Besides, experts say that UNROCA data does not mention five full sets of unassembled Su-30MKI fighters given to the Indian corporation HAL.

UNROCA data is also incomplete without modernized equipment and repair parts which constitute a large part of Russian weapons exports. Thus, India received modernized the Project 08773 submarine with the new antiship missile system Club-S in 2005. Yemen received 12 modernized MiG-29SMT aircraft, and Eritrea received two of these. The total cost of modernized equipment and repair parts exported in 2005 that was not registered with UNROCA is estimated at minimum of $1.2 billion.

Russia Did Not Give UN Complete Data on its Weapons Export
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« Reply #26 on: June 20, 2006, 07:05:30 AM »

Russia’s Supreme Court Overturns Verdict for Synagogue Attacker

Created: 20.06.2006 13:37 MSK (GMT +3), Updated: 14:46 MSK, 13 minutes ago

MosNews

Russia’s Supreme Court has overturned the verdict of Aleksandr Koptsev, who had attacked parishioners in a Moscow synagogue.

Alexander Koptsev burst into the synagogue on Bolshaya Bronnaya street in Moscow on January 11, 2006, and stabbed eight people with a hunting knife before being wrestled to the ground by the rabbi and his son. Four of those injured were in serious condition. Russia’s Chief Rabbi, Berl Lazar, announced he was cutting short a visit to Israel and returning to Moscow after the incident.

Koptsev was charged with racially-motivated attempted murder and humiliation of a religious group. He told investigators that he was jealous of Jews and their better living standards and was inspired to act by books and internet websites. He added that the main factor was his “desire to die” and he felt sorry for those he had injured. He has been described by Russian media as a skinhead. Russia’s chief rabbi stated that the attack was a symptom of the general climate of intolerance and xenophobia in Russia.

On March 27, 2006, Koptsev was sentenced to thirteen years in prison and mandatory psychiatric treatment after being found guilty of attempted murder.

A month later Koptsev’s lawyer, Vladimir Kirsanov, appealed to Russia’s Supreme Court to have his client’s sentence reduced, arguing he was mentally unstable, did not kill anyone, and did not cause any disabling injuries. Meanwhile, prosecution lawyers have also appealed to include the charge of inciting interethnic hatred, which was dropped by the court.

The resolution of the Supreme Court, as quoted by Gazeta.ru internet daily, states that a Moscow local court will now reexamine Koptesev’s case.

Russia’s Supreme Court Overturns Verdict for Synagogue Attacker
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« Reply #27 on: June 20, 2006, 08:49:56 PM »

The Global Range of Iran's Ballistic Missile Program
Uzi Rubin
20 June 2006

The Iranians know they cannot win a war against the United States. Their stated policy is to deter the U.S. and its allies by threatening a war that will cause such damage at such a price that this option will become unacceptable. With this perspective, they are investing very smartly in deterrence enhancers and force multipliers instead of replacing obsolete equipment.

What does Iran invest in? Precision strike munitions, anti-ship missiles, nuclear weapons, ballistic missiles, and space capabilities. The newer Shahab 3ER missile (based on the North Korean No Dong), with a reach of 2,000 km, can threaten Ankara or Alexandria, giving Iran leverage over the entire Middle East.

Iran has acquired eighteen BM25 land-mobile missiles with launchers from North Korea, which can strike targets in Europe. In the past, the BM25 has been produced in two models: one with a range of 2,500 km and the second with a range of 3,500 km.

Well-substantiated reports indicate that the Iranians managed to smuggle out of Ukraine several Russian Kh 55 strategic cruise missiles, probably not to be deployed but to be emulated and copied.

In 1998 Iran announced a space program. A space launcher that can orbit a satellite weighing 300 kg can be altered into an ICBM that could drop more than 300 kg on Washington.

Iran's political leadership is now aiming toward global power projection in the name of Islam, demanding recognition that Islam comprises 25 percent of humanity and should occupy its rightful place in decision-making in world affairs. Statements like this are not about self-defense.

Iran is Seeking to Deter the United States

What is the rationale behind the Iranian missile program? Prior to 1991 and the first Gulf War, the main threat to Iran was Saddam Hussein's Iraq. The Iranians began developing their missile program under fire when Saddam Hussein launched missiles at them and they had nothing to respond with except for a few Scud-Bs that they got from Libya, the only country that supported Iran.

Since 1991, the United States has replaced Iraq as threat number one for Iran. The Iranian military's reference threat scenario is a massive U.S. military action against Iran, aided by U.S. allies in the region including the Gulf States and Israel, which they see as an outpost of the United States.

The Iranians are realists. They don't aim to win a set piece battle against the United States. They know it's impossible. Their policy is to deter the United States and its allies by threatening a war that will cause such damage at such a price that this option will become unacceptable to the United States. With this perspective, they are not focusing their efforts on renovating their quite large armed forces. Rather, they are investing very smartly in deterrence enhancers and force multipliers. Replacing obsolete equipment has secondary priority.

In April 2005, during one of the two large annual military parades, the Iranian air force held a fly-by. The majority of the airplanes involved - F5s, F4 "Phantoms," and F14 "Tomcats" - were all U.S.-made combat aircraft bought during the time of the Shah, and they were still flying last year in Teheran. Looking at Iranian ground forces, we see a lot of M113 APCs, some M60 tanks, some Russian and Chinese tanks that they bought during the Iran-Iraq war, but there has been no massive renovation.

What Armaments Does Iran Invest In?

So what does Iran invest in? Precision strike munitions, naval weapons, ballistic missiles, and a space program, apart from the nuclear program. Iran invests a lot in anti-ship weapons like the Raad missile, with a range of 350 km. The purpose of this weapon is to control the Persian Gulf, which they see as the corridor through which the United States would probably launch an invasion. It is interesting to note the weapons tested by Iran during its recent large-scale naval exercise. Iranian media announced the use of the Misaq shoulder-launched, anti-aircraft missile which strongly resembles the old Soviet "Strella" Manpad; the Kosar shore defense anti-ship missile that is very similar to a Chinese anti-ship missile; the "Fajar 3 radar-evading" missile (probably the Shahab 2 [Scud C]); and the Ajdar "super-fast" underwater missile, which most probably is the not-too-successful Russian Shkval underwater rocket.

Ballistic Missiles in the Iranian Arsenal

The Iranians are pursuing the most intensive missile program in the Third World, with constantly increasing ranges. Iran's missile arsenal begins with the Zalzal unguided rocket and the Fatah 110, an improved Chinese bombardment rocket with a 200 km range and a 200-250 kg warhead, to threaten concentrations of invading armies near its borders. Iran also has the Shahab 1 (Scud B) with a range of 300 km and the Shahab 2 (Scud C) with a range of 500 km.

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« Reply #28 on: June 20, 2006, 08:50:42 PM »

The Iranian Shahab 3 missile, with a range of 1,300 km, is patterned after the North Korean No Dong missile. The Shahab 3 can threaten either Tel Aviv or Riyadh from the same launch point. The newer Shahab 3ER, with its 2,000 km range, can reach Ankara in Turkey, Alexandria in Egypt, or Sanaa in Yemen from one single launch point deep within Iran. Thus, Iran does not have to move its launchers to project power, making its missile arsenal more survivable.

Iran's missiles are not controlled by the military, they are controlled by the Revolutionary Guard, which has its own air force, ground force, and navy, and which reports to Iran's spiritual leader.

Iran is investing a lot in mobile launchers, but a few months ago we found a reference for the first time to the possibility of silo-basing.

The number of tests of the Shahab 3 has been relatively small and there are indications that perhaps as many as one-half of them failed. What is intriguing is that Pakistan has a parallel program of an almost identical missile that is tested more frequently and is almost always successful. This does not mean that the Shahab missiles are not operational. While Western practice does not accept a new weapon for service unless it achieves repeated successes in the test range, the Iranians apparently think that if it worked once, it's operational.

Iran acquired eighteen BM25 land-mobile missiles with launchers from North Korea which can strike targets in Europe. In the past, the BM25 has been produced in two models: one with a range of 2,500 km and the second with a range of 3,500 km. Obviously, they threaten not just Iran's immediate neighbors, and it seems that the Iranians are looking to project power beyond their own region.

Once Iran set up a missile industry, it tried to cover expenses by exporting. The Iranians attempted to sell Scud-Bs to Zaire. They signed a $12 billion deal with Khaddafi to set up an entire missile industry in Libya and were very upset when Khaddafi changed and became one of the good guys. Iran has also provided heavy rockets to Hizballah: the Fadjir 3 with a range of 45 km and the Fadjir 5 with a 75 km range.

Iran is also developing a whole line of big, solid propellant, two-stage ballistic missiles - the Ghader 110. Well-substantiated reports indicate that the Iranians managed to steal and smuggle out of Ukraine several strategic cruise missiles, probably not to be deployed but to be emulated and copied. Thus, we can expect an Iranian cruise missile program too, based on cloning the Russian Kh 55, the Soviet equivalent of the U.S. "Tomahawk."

Iran's Space Program Could Extend Its Global Reach

Iran announced a space program as soon as it tested the first Shahab 3 in 1998. Iranian statements refer to several satellites, some locally made, and an indigenous space launcher. Ultimately, their space program aims to orbit spy satellites like Israel's "Ofek," by an Iranian satellite launcher from Iranian territory. A spy satellite of reasonable performance should weigh about 300 kg. Once Iran learns how to put 300 kg into earth orbit, it could adapt the satellite launcher into an ICBM that could drop more than 300 kg anywhere in the world, for instance, on Washington, D.C. The Iranians could be smart enough not to actually develop an ICBM: every time the Iranian satellite passed above the U.S., it would remind America of Iran's potential to strike it. Remember the impact on the U.S. of Russia's launch of "Sputnik"?

Iran's immediate goal is to deter the United States. Its long-term goal is clearly to project power beyond Iran, over Europe and over the United States. Iran is already projecting power over the entire Middle East. With its space program, Iran is bound to project power on a global scale.

Obviously, the Iranians are overstating their capabilities as part of their psychological warfare. But behind this overstatement is a real capability - not as much as they claim, but not insignificant either. They have some real capability there, they are investing a lot of money in it, and it is growing with time.

In 2006, the Iranian political leadership seems to have moved beyond the needs of self-defense and is now talking about global power projection. At a recent conference in Berlin, one of the deputies to Iran's foreign minister called upon the world to recognize that Islam comprises 25 percent of humanity and should occupy its rightful place in decision-making in world affairs and in the allocation of the world's resources. Statements like this are not about self-defense.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has stated that Islam should roll back 300 years of Western ascendancy. He was speaking in the name of Islam, not in the name of Iran. At the same time, there is talk about the greatness of Iran, with its 6,000-year-old civilization. The Iranians are trying to retrieve the old glory of the empire and at the same time become the leaders of world Islam. The development of long-range missiles is a key element in building up Iran's power to assume such a leadership position.

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« Reply #29 on: June 20, 2006, 10:47:02 PM »

 Iran, Saudi Arabia, Sudan call for safeguarding Muslims rights
Tehran, June 20, IRNA

Iran-Justice-Muslims
The justice ministers of Iran, Saudi Arabia and Sudan urge that the rights of Muslims should be safeguarded.

A report released by the Public Relations Department of Iran's Ministry of Justice on Tuesday said that on the sidelines of the First UN Human Rights Council meeting in Geneva, Switzerland, Justice Minister Jamal Karimi-Rad, along with his entourage, conferred with his Sudanese counterpart Muhamed-Ali al-Moradi.

At the meeting, Karimi-Rad referred to cooperation between the wo states on the human rights issue in international bodies and called for expansion of bilateral relations in all fields, including judiciary, economy and agriculture.

Expressing satisfaction with the formerly reached agreements, he said that Iran is determined to bolster its judicial and legal cooperation with Sudan.

He stressed the significance of human rights and avoiding politicization and dual standards by the UN Human Rights Council, given that it disrupts its normal proceedings.

Turning to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's initiative on the human rights dialogues offered to the world, he said that according to his proposal, some delegations should be dispatched to world countries, including the Western states and the US, to investigate various axes of the issue and urged the need for mutual inspections.

"Based on Ahmadinejad's suggested scheme, to promote human rights the grounds should be prepared for exchange of views on human rights principles," he added.

For his part, the Sudanese minister called for expansion of multifaceted mutual ties and addressing his Iranian counterpart, said, "Given your high morale, you are a successful country." In a meeting with Saudi Minister for Human Rights Turki al-Sudairy, Karimi-Rad said that both Iran and Saudi Arabia have a decisive role in the world of Islam, adding that their cooperation and coordination in all affairs contribute to the progress of Muslim countries.

For his part, Al-Sudairy declared his approval of Iran's approach to the issue and said that his country is prepared to pursue the former discussions on legal, judicial and Islamic human rights issues.

Justice Minister Jamal Karimi-Rad accompanied by a number of judicial officials, including Tehran prosecutor general Saeed Mortazavi left for Geneva, Switzerland Monday morning to attend the first meeting of the United Nations Human Rights Council.

During his stay in Geneva, the Iranian delegation will confer with a number of representatives of the countries attending the meeting to discuss matters of mutual concern.

The newly founded council started its activity in Geneva Monday and will continue up to June 22. It is being attended by the high-ranking representatives of more than 100 countries.

Iran, Saudi Arabia, Sudan call for safeguarding Muslims rights
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