Ahmadinajad wins and so does Bibi.

Guernica "Since Mr Ahmadinajad's election in 2005, he has repeatedly called for Israel to be wiped off the map, and denied the Holocaust happened. And he has argued that the Israelis were punishing the Palestinians because of what the Germans did to the Jews in World War II, and called on European leaders to provide the Jews with territory so they could move their state to that continent.

This extreme aggressiveness combined with Mr Ahmadinajad's flaunting of Iran's nuclear program has clearly marked him as Israel's leading enemy.

However, in the run-up to the Iranian polls, Mr Ahmadinejad's re-election has come to be seen as a strategic advantage. "There is no one who has served Israel's information program better than him," wrote columnist Ben Caspi in the daily Ma'ariv yesterday.

Israeli security officials note that decisions regarding major issues such as the nuclear program are made in Iran not by the president, regardless of who he is, but by Iran's Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, and a small group of senior clerics.

"From an operational point of view, it doesn't make a difference who wins," said one official. And a Foreign Ministry official who deals with the Iranian issue said: "From an informational point of view, he (Ahmadinejad) is the best thing that's happened to us." "  The Australian


Israeli government officials rarely talk about their political warfare and propaganda operations.  For that reason alone the quotations from "government officials" would be of value.

Ahmadinajad's win is bad news unless you are looking forward to the day when the US goes to war with Iran.  Israeli propaganda will continue to program the American public in preparation for that day.  They have been doing very well in this effort so far.  The media outlets and media friends are busy every day inculcating the idea that Iran is a deadly threat and must be "stopped."  The effort to discredit US intelligence is also progressing nicely.  The goal there is to gain general acceptance in the US of the notion that Israeli intelligence is better, smarter, more effective than US intelligence and therefore the Israeli estimate of the Iranian "menace" should govern decisions.

If nothing interrupts the progress of this "informational" campaign the US will attack Iran at some not too far distant time, not tomorrow, not next week, maybe not net month, but, soon.  The "end of the year" now takes on greater meaning.   pl


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82 Responses to Ahmadinajad wins and so does Bibi.

  1. johnf says:

    Your extremely pessimistic analysis might be right.
    But there’s also the possibility that Ahmadinejad walks in to see Khamenei with a great big smile on his face and Khamenei says “Just the guy I want to see. You’re just the person I need, sitting on a personnal victory that no one can undermine, to push through my peace plans with the West.”
    Obama might be thinking just the same with Netanyahu.
    In Northern Ireland peace only came when the two really hardline men, Paisley and Adams, finally sat down in the same room.
    If liberals agree a peace, the right can always undermine it. If rightists agree it, then any attempt to undermine it only destroys themselves.

  2. curious says:

    Iran is going Ukraine full blown or belarus.
    ahmadinejad has an option, come down very hard (ala Burma’s junta) or resign. Or reach out to the student faction.
    If he does come down hard, he has to find the source and channel that drive the street protest.
    Rafsanjani is afraid now. (he was accused of corruption. which probably he is, since he is the richest man in Iran.)
    But it’s all students and female voters. Ahmadinejat obviously didn’t get them.
    Rafsanjani has resigned all duties in protest to Supreme Leader Khamenei’s endorsement of Ahmadinejad as winner of yesterday’s election.

  3. Josh says:

    Please look up the correct translation of the Farsi quote by Khomeini that has been misappropriated to Ahmadinejad – there is no such phrasing as “wipe off the face” – it is really much closer to “…the occupation regime over Jerusalem must vanish from the page of time…”

  4. curious says:

    from the way it looks, if things aren’t calming down by thursday, start buying oil future.
    It will hit $90- $120 in the blink of an eye.
    There is no such thing as economic recovery, the stimulus is dead.
    If the iranian goes completely bonker, they will shut everything down and start preparing trade war, then real war.
    Watch intel movement in china and russia. Might as well watch how they move military asset too. Central asian game is about to change a great deal.
    Whatever comes out of this green revolution. It wont be nice.

  5. Walter says:

    The position of Western governments has never made sense to me. Ahmadinajad’s position seems logical to me. Why should the Palestinians pay for the sins of the Germans? If the USA and England are so sympathetic to the Zionists, why do they not provide land in Idaho or Wales for them?
    It seems like intellectual/moral dishonesty to denounce the position of Palestinians and their sympathizers.
    My only conclusion is that Western governments do not want peace, they just want what they want.

  6. Harper says:

    Early report from on the ground in Tehran: There is widespread belief that this was massive fraud. Mousavi people were doing some very active polling, in the course of lining up their pollwatching and get out the vote operations, both in big cities and in rural areas. They were reporting, just on the eve of the elections, that Ahmadinejad was incapable of getting more than 14 million votes. So there had to be a big turnout–above 30 million votes–for Musavi to win. The official turnout numbers run between 30-34 million, the kind of big turnout that was going to benefit Musavi. The announcement of the winner was made at 1 AM, hours before the morning prayers, and by the time the sun rose, the police were out in force on the streets of Tehran. The problem the opposition faced, all along, is that a “parallel apparatus” to the clergy, including the IRGC, the Basij militia and the Martyrs Brigade have a tremendous vote fraud capability. You don’t vote by precincts in Iran. You can vote anywhere, so vote padding is possible. But in this case, this “parallel apparatus” runs the Interior Ministry and control the poll and vote count apparatus. This looks like Chicago-style dumping one set of ballot boxes in the river, and replacing them with a different set.
    The Supreme Leader Khamenei has declared that he accepts the outcome, but that is by no means the end of the story. Stay tuned for some nasty developments in the immediate hours and days ahead.

  7. curious says:

    Sianat az ara (Protectors of Votes) Iran’ Election Commission, have called the result fraud and are calling for new election.
    Things are accelerating now. Ukraine it is.

  8. curious says:

    Update your wiki…wooo….
    F. William Engdahl notes Gene Sharp authored a text a basic how-to manual for the color revolutions From Dictatorship to Democracy was funded by the US Congress, NED and the Soros Foundations, to train people in and to study the theories of ‘non-violence as a form of warfare.’ Sharp had worked with NATO and the CIA over the years training operators in Burma, Lithuania, Serbia, Georgia, Ukraine to Taiwan, Venezuela and Iraq. Furthermore, Engdahl says Freedom House endorsed the text and gave it rave reviews. Engdahl argues that, ”
    in short virtually every regime which has been the target of a US-backed soft coup in the past twenty years has involved Freedom House, NED, Gene Sharp and usually, his associate, Col. Robert Helvey, a retired US Army intelligence specialist. Notably, Sharp was in Beijing two weeks before student demonstrations at Tiananmen Square in 1989. The Pentagon and US intelligence have refined the art of such soft coups to a fine level. RAND planners call it ‘swarming,’ referring to the swarms of youth, typically linked by SMS and web blogs, who can be mobilized on command to destabilize a target regime.
    The Yushchenko Mythos by Justin Raimondo was one article that attempted to set the record straight about the Orange Revolution, but missed the mark completely. Raimondo is an blogger and a pundit, not an analyst of Ukraine or a political scientist, so I will not spend too much time on his opinions. His point is that Yushchenko is not a democrat, but a “CIA stooge” funded by US organization and
    …billionaire George Soros, who has his own interests in Ukraine and the former Soviet Union. According to the Ukrainian Center for Political and Economic Research (UCPER), a poll of the mostly pro-Yushchenko Ukrainian NGOs reveals that foreign sponsors pick up 60 percent of the tab, including: “‘Vidrodzhenya’ (Revival) sponsored by George Soros – 36.3%, ‘Freedom House’ (the U.S.) – 22.7%, ‘Poland-America-Ukraine Cooperation Initiative’ – 22.7%, USAID – 22.7%, National Endowment for Democracy (the U.S.) – 18.2%, the World Bank – 13.6% (the total percentage exceeding 100%, since the respondents often named several sponsors).” Ms. Timoshenko, who boasts of having a fleet of six jets at her disposal, no doubt picks up the rest…
    – insertion of operatives (check)
    – “color” check
    – facebook, cellphone, fax, email, students (check)
    – NGO’s (check) ..still can’t find newbie politicians that is being propped.
    – polarization (check)
    – street protest (check)
    This is going to end with one or two people die…at least.
    worst case scenario, full blown crack in Iran government. (Why do they have guardian of revolution if it can’t function? it’s designed precisely for this type of event.)

  9. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Col. Lang:
    After the war, then what?

  10. Babak Makkinejad says:

    For the past four years of his presidency, Mr. Ahmadinejad had been criss-crossing Iran together with his cabinet ministers. He has visited every single Iranian province during the last 4 years and held meetings with the locals and conducted state business at provincial cities together with his cabinet. He has been doling out money and investments in the provinces. In effect, he had been campaigning for the last 4 years.
    He also had consistently positioned himself as a humble, corruption-fighting man-servant of the Iranian people.
    That he has been re-elected in a landslide is quite plausible given the activities I mentioned above.
    I seriously doubt the allegations of wide-spread fraud and clearly Mr. Mousavi has a very respectable showing at 13 million votes.
    I caution you all that Northern Tehran does not speak for Iran.

  11. Simon says:

    I have had problems with the Western media’s coverage of the Iranian presidential election from the start. The certainty that change was coming always seemed like wishful thinking. From all reports Ahmadinejad has had strong support from the poor and rural population whose numbers are much higher than the young people and women who voted in Tehran. I have no doubt that there was some election fraud, but the confidence that Musavi won seems foolish.
    Iran is not the Ukraine. If I had a dollar for every time someone predicted the end of the Islamic Republic, I would be a millionaire. The Iranians no matter how unsatisfied they are with their government are not any more likely to “rise up” against them any more than we are in this country.

  12. swerv says:

    Any chance of having Mr. Babak Makkinejad weigh in on this? I’d love to get his perspective.
    Also Saad El-Hariri on the elections at :http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/06/12/AR2009061203452.html?hpid=opinionsbox1

  13. Jose says:

    Since the appointment of Dennis “the menace” Ross, any hope of real change in the Middle East was over.
    Right before the Iranian elections, “the menace” published a book, “Myths, Illusions, and Peace: Finding a New Direction for America in the Middle East.”
    Here is the link from Amazon.com: http://www.amazon.com/Myths-Illusions-Peace-Finding-Direction/dp/0670020893/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1244925071&sr=1-1
    Editorial Reviews
    Product Description
    Two experts debunk misconceptions about the Middle East and set clear-eyed policies for the future
    Why has the United States consistently failed to achieve its strategic goals in the Middle East? According to Dennis Ross and David Makovsky, two of America’s leading experts on the region, it is because we have been laboring under false assumptions, or mythologies, about the nature and motivation of Middle East countries and their leaders. In Myths, Illusions, and Peace, the authors debunk these damaging fallacies, held by both the right and the left, and present a concise and far-reaching set of principles that will help America set an effective course of action in the region.
    Among the myths that the authors show to be false and even dangerous is the idea that Israeli-Palestinian peace is the key to solving all the Middle East’s problems; that regime change is a prerequisite for peace and democracy; and that Iran’s leadership is immune from diplomatic and economic pressure.
    These and other historic misunderstandings have generated years’ worth of failed policies and crippled America’s ability to make productive decisions in this volatile part of the world, a region that will hold the key to our security in the twenty-first century. Ross and Makovsky offer a critical rethinking of American perceptions at a time of great import and change.
    About the Author
    Dennis Ross is special advisor to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for the Gulf and Southwest Asia. He is the author of the bestselling The Missing Peace.
    Analyst and former journalist David Makovsky is a fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy and the author of Making Peace with the PLO. – Amazon.com
    Were we ever really serious about peace or just the same failed policies with better public relations?
    Could all this have had an impact on the election in Iran?
    So, just because our guy lost, there had to be massive fraud?
    Hardy a good environment for “change we can believe in” by replacing Elliot “bow tie” Cohen with Dennis “the menace” Ross.
    Just my two cents…

  14. Patrick Lang says:

    Wreckage in both countries.
    The US can not stand another big war economically. We are a borrowing, creditor country. Further massive war caused indebtedness will simply be more “living beyond our means.” You can only borrow so much money before the household finances collapse. we are close now, having exported our manufacturing base. We are mere consumers, living on credit.
    Iran? You have not seen destruction of this kind. pl

  15. Highlander says:

    Hey Colonel,
    You being the DIA “Uber Spook”, in your hey day.
    What further tidbids can you( or anyone else) offer up to us mere citizens, regarding Freedom House,NED,Gene Sharp, and Colonel Robert Helvey US Army retired? Are they good , bad, or just more government cows in the world’s china shop?
    But please! For Lord’s sake don’t metion George Soros and his foundations, or we’ll all be pushing up daisies!

  16. curious says:

    I seriously doubt the allegations of wide-spread fraud and clearly Mr. Mousavi has a very respectable showing at 13 million votes.
    I caution you all that Northern Tehran does not speak for Iran.
    Posted by: Babak Makkinejad | 13 June 2009 at 03:25 PM
    Well what do you expect? Iran is a prime target. You should have expect and prepare for this.
    my take:
    1. Ahmadinejad is ahead in this riot game. People in general do not like city riot. If amadinejad can show firm authority, but also accomodative to all players concerned, he wins. He has to show leadership. The core government leadership has to stay intake. (military, civil servant, religious leadership.) Everybody has to issue exact same statement. (maintain stability, everybody help with calm, anarchist will be apprehended) Draw the line, but also provide people with way to let steam out.
    2. Musavi has overextend himself with his statement claiming victory. However the election has been declared illegit but ruling bodies. So this is a mess. Why not national recount?
    in case of re-doing it. Ahamadinejad already a guarantee win. All he has to do is be a leader. Let’s do this, urge calm and order. “save the country and economy”. Musavi cannot claim that. So ka-ching. (With the rioting, mousavi credibility is gone forever. nobody like chaos. He can’t control his people, there is no way people will trust him to control the nation.)
    as for reount. declare the time at your choosing. this is incumbent biggest ace. (no government in the world can anticipate and prepare clandestine operation at this scale without deep preparation.) Even a student riot cannot be coordinated in short period of time. Everybody need security and alternate plan. Iran afteral is still a state police.
    So declare new election in 3-4 weeks. Use television to appeal for calm (lots of “chat” and images of city distraction, then appeal for calm. that’s your second ace) Start screening “the nasty guys. in the meantimes. 3 weeks is enough to cougt everybody)
    Remind everybody to let the police work. (Police has to be very discipline. No idiots beating up people senselessly in the street. No in fronnt of camera at least. Put your most discipline team in front, and the dumber one second in line.) Absolute leadership and discipline in security aparatus. Othewise, chaos.
    3. Nobody dies. At this very moment, Iran is quickly heading toward venezuela style coup attempt. (rioting, mysterious sniper, dead student) control every guns, ask people to keep an eye on anarchist. Put surveillance camera, and scope everywhere.
    Student is the future, those who march in front rows from elite school will lead the nation one day. Work with them. They want better future, just like everybody else. Talk and invite them to work together. The idiot who burns stuff and go running around doing violance, usually from B and C school. detain them. Liquidate the ring leaders. Nobody will remember them.
    4. scan all phone, emails, blogs, student lists. Pictures of rioters. Who gave what speech, newspaper editors, meeting minutes, communique. Looking at the images so far. the demographic is very narrow (age and how they dress), the student doesn’t have a lot of public support. I give them few days, if the police and security apparatus are doing their work properly. It’s students, everybody did this sort of stuff in their days. What’s so new about it?
    5. Whoever stand up and do the right thing will lead Iran for next 12-15 years.
    As long as nobody dies and the security apparatus maintain discipline, all these is just a hick up.
    Once people die and state security apparatus start cracking, then everything goes to hell. Buy your ticket to disneyland.

  17. Tosk59 says:

    Re Iranian elections, there almost surely was a lot of ‘putting the thumb on the scales’ but the assumption that the results “prove” electoral fraud is a stretch (so far), and most analyses are rather unsupported by reason or fact (e.g. see link below)
    As to your point that Ahmedinajad’s re-election is Natanyahu’s wet dream and that they are beating the drums of war, you are spot on… But how does one resist?

  18. curious says:

    Who is the Mayor of Tehran? His riot police is terrible. he needs to tell his crew to maintain line and control flow. Not picking up fight with people. Restore order and show authority.
    They can’t even maintain line. If this is real city riot, the entire city would be burned in ashes.

  19. Babak Makkinejad says:

    You wrote: “However the election has been declared illegit but ruling bodies. So this is a mess.”.
    That is noit factually correct.
    I repeat, Mr. Ahmadinejad has been campaigning, in essence, for the past 4 years. One should be rather surprised if the receivers of his government’s attention and largess in the provinces would not want to return him to office.
    Mr. Chavez also has been elected and re-elected by margins above 60%. No one talks about fraud there.

  20. kao_hsien_chih says:

    Iran is not the Ukraine.
    Iran is closer to Ukraine than not, I think. In Ukraine, the strength of the pro-Russian sentiment cannot be ignored–those to the east of the Dnieper are heavily pro-Russian and they number as much as 40-45% of the Ukrainian population. They solidly backed Yanukovich in that disputed election–and from their perspective, the West and “the traitors” stole the election from them through the so-called “Orange Revolution.”
    In Iran, the only difference is probably that the supporters of the “color revolution” are probably far fewer in numbers than in the Ukraine and Ahmedinejad’s support much broader–and he has been, as Babak noted, far smarter politician–in the Western, more “democratic” sense–even if we don’t like what he does in foreign policy.

  21. eakens says:

    …the last time the riot police in Iran tried to stay organized and shied away from being aggressive…there was a revolution.
    Anyhow, this whole election was a power play between Khamenei and Rafsanjani to determine which one’s son would ascend the “thrown”. Ahmadinejad is nothing more than Khamenei’s tool to undermine Rafsanjani’s efforts to undermine Khamenei – after all, he’s been by Khamenei’s side for how many years and now has been publicly called out by Ahmadinejad and thrown under the bus? That wouldn’t have been permissible without the explicit and tacit approval of Khamenei.
    If the fracas keeps up, the people might get another election. But it will end up being a Pyrrhic Victory because what follows will be a lot more than the people bargained for.

  22. DICKERSON3870 says:

    RE: ” Why has the United States consistently failed to achieve its strategic goals in the Middle East? According to Dennis Ross and David Makovsky, two of America’s leading experts on the region, it is because we have been laboring under false assumptions, or mythologies, about the nature and motivation of Middle East countries and their leaders.”
    MY COMMENT: This smells like ‘Team B’.
    WIKIPEDIA: “Team B”
    (EXCERPT) …Team B also concluded that the Soviet Union did not adhere to the doctrine of mutual assured destruction, but rather believed it could win a nuclear war outright. Pipes –in his commentary article–argued that CIA suffered from “mirror-imaging” (i.e., from assuming that the other side had to–and did–think and evaluate exactly the same way); Pipes further wrote that Team B showed Soviet thinking to be based on winning a nuclear war…not avoiding such war due to MAD…
    SOURCE – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Team_B
    SEE ALSO: “RUSH FROM REALITY” by Rick Perlstein
    (EXCERPT)…This was the doctrine of the “principle of reversal” enunciated by John Birch Society founder Robert Welch. Welch explained that in order to understand what the Communists are saying, you have to translate it into its opposite. Though it was a principle, of course, that Welch frequently honored in the breach. When a Communist said something he thought was embarrassing, Welch hammered home that the Communist meant exactly what he said.
    The sole authority, of course, qualified to decide when a Communist meant the opposite of what he said, and when he meant exactly what he said was Robert Welch….
    SOURCE – http://www.ourfuture.org/blog-entry/2009020926/rush-reality

  23. Babak Makkinejad says:

    The mayor of Tehran is Mr. Ghalibaf.
    But the riot police do not report to him.

  24. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Yes, Col. LAng – the fight with your neighbour that leaves you a blind cripple and him dead is not worth fighting.

  25. Fred says:

    You have plenty of posts. Here’s a couple thoughts in response. First, the world economy can not sustain $100/barrel oil. Iran is not the cause of the 60% price increase over the past 6 months, unregulated financial speculation is. This is little more than the transfer of economic stimulus funds to the those firms and their owners.
    On your five point post:
    1. “…everyone has to issue exact same statement.” Just like Next Ginrich and the Republicans with their identical talking points heard from Fox news to the Little Green Footballs blog?
    2. A recount? Like Bush v. Gore or Franken v. Coleman?
    3. “Student is the future, those who march in front rows from elite school will lead the nation one day.” So a B-C school student can’t lead the nation? Tell that to Newt Gingrich, Sarah Palin and about 400 members of the US Congress and Senate and who knows how many state governors. “The idiot who burns stuff and go running around doing violence, usually from B and C school. detain them. Liquidate the ring leaders. Nobody will remember them.” Thank goodness the for that victory at Guantanamo Bay. Who needs laws, evidence and fair trials when you can just ‘liquidate the ring leaders’.
    4. “scan all phone, emails, blogs, student lists”, great, just following America’s example of warrantless wiretapping of everyone. Thanks again to the Bush administration.
    5. Please define ‘the right thing.” According to whom?

  26. curious says:

    A Moussavi supporter was injured in a demonstration. Witnesses reported that at least one person had been shot dead in clashes with the police in Vanak Square in Tehran.
    definitely need to exert control. This is bad.

  27. curious says:

    street level pictures

  28. curious says:

    5. Please define ‘the right thing.” According to whom?
    Posted by: Fred | 13 June 2009 at 10:42 PM
    That’s the same everywhere. Try rioting in any street USA. You will be liquidated and nobody will remember you. You will be a line in random police report. casualty statistic.
    Can you even say how many people died in last few major US urban riot? (can you even tell if there was any? I rest my case.)
    The mayor of Tehran is Mr. Ghalibaf. But the riot police do not report to him.
    Posted by: Babak Makkinejad | 13 June 2009 at 10:08 PM
    When this thing is over, the big cheese in charge definitely need to know what’s wrong with everything. Obviously proceedure, institutions, training, communication lines, …etc are all inadequate. (seriously, you want to talk missile exchange with Israel? Tehran riot police can’t even keep a straight line.) Iran needs serious rethinking from bottoms up. Whoever the next leader is, he has his job filled. The social imbalance is serious enough that major institutions does not perform at all under stress.

  29. Interesting comments to an interesting post. Clearly, the dynamics of a mass election, even a fraudulent one, are not an every day phenomenon. Again like the comments of Curious and our webblogger PL. My guess is before the week is out given the recent rise in oil leadership circles in OPEC and Russia are rubbing hands in glee. China again worried about supply disruption really only cares that supply is maintained no matter what the cost given dollar stockpile. Perhaps by Labor Day and perhaps by end of year we might just have a quite different take on the real dynamics in IRAN. Out of curiosity what are actual travel restrictions on Iranian citizens and the restrictions on EU and US citizen visits to Iran?rircUt o

  30. Matthew says:

    Babak, great post.
    I wonder if this is the beginning of the unwinding of these “color revolutions” all over? As the Col. Lang points out, we can’t afford another war. Well, there have been some reports that Saudi Arabia poured about $700 million dollars into Lebanon before the election. How much longer will checkbook diplomacy be possible?

  31. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Clealry there are many many shortcomings in Iran.
    Perhaps in some future time, NYPD could train the Iranian police in more effective riot control techniques.

  32. lowlander says:

    The following excerpts are from:
    They throw much light on this election and the likelyhood of western bribery/interference
    “Mousavi is no idiot for sure (check out his resume here), and since he is not an idiot, he must know that he lost this election and that, in fact, Ahmadinejad won by an un-fakable landslide. Still, he choose the destablilize his own country at a moment when that country is facing a possible military agression from abroad. What does that tell you about Mousavi? It tells me that he is objectively the tool of yet another US backed destabilization campaign. It matters little whether Mousavi himself is a paid CIA agent, or whether his entourage is carefully using his ego to push him towards the kind of action he has taken now. The bottom line is still that Mousavi is now hurting his country and helping to destabilize it.
    I don’t think that this Mousavi thing is going anywhere. Both the vast majority of Iranians and the entire power structure of the government will never let him destabilize the country. Sure, the Western press will constantly remind us that “Ahmadinejad stole the election”, but it’s not like Ahmadinejad was ever popular with the Zionist press corps, or like anybody in Iran really cares.
    But the ability of the Iranian Vilayat-e Faqih (Guardianship of the Islamic Jurists) system to vet presidential candidates is now clearly in doubt. Sure, Mousavi probably had impeccable Muslim credentials, but why 12 members of the Guardian Council were not informed of his character and inclinations is rather puzzling for me. Either that, or they did know, but could do nothing to prevent him from running. In either case, this entire business seems to show that the Islamic Republic of Iran is not as impermeable to destabilization operations as one might have thought”

  33. FB Ali says:

    Amidst all the propaganda and hype, both pro and anti, Sunday’s post by Juan Cole on his blog provides a reasoned analysis on the issue of whether the election was stolen or not. Well worth reading, at:

  34. Patrick Lang says:

    Like all moralists I would prefer that the Iranian election have been honest, but, in the end that will not matter from the international relations point of view.
    If the Ahmadinajad vistory stands then, the process of programming the American people will go forward until Obama no longer controls the situation. That’s what happened before ’03 in Iraq and the same process is now underway.
    A further nicety wil occur when and if the US declares the result to have been fraudulent. At that point any sort of reationship with the Ahmadinajad government will become impossible other than one directed at regime chane.
    We should prepare ourselves for what is to come. pl

  35. LeaNder says:

    Out of curiosity what are actual travel restrictions on Iranian citizens and the restrictions on EU and US citizen visits to Iran?
    I have Iranian/German (a couple) neighbors. They visited Iran not long ago, with their almost one year old son. We have also a rather big Iranian community here in Cologne, the ones I know visit their families frequently.
    This is obviously not true for the refugees that had troubles in Iran and seek German citizenship.

  36. J says:

    Are you saying that we the U.S. which is now in brass-tacks terms an — AIPAC slave-state –, that we the U.S. citizenry now have to bow to the new Pharaoh on the block called Israel? How can we turn Pharaoh Israel’s Iran-war chariots back in on the new Mideast Pharaoh?

  37. Babak Makkinejad says:

    FB Ali:
    I think that if, in fact, 25 million votes had been cast for Mr. Mousavi, then there would have been massive protests all over major Iranian cities: Tabriz, Mash-had, Isphahan, Shiraz, else where. One would have expected the electorate to express their anger and frustration one way or another. As far as I can tell, the protests were confined to Northern Tehran.
    It amuses me that when Mr. Khatami wins 2 elections, they are considered fair but when an Ahmadinejad or a Chavez wins elections then “there were irregularities”.
    Col. Lang:
    Mr. Ahmadineh=jad, in my opinion, is the man with whom United States can do business; not Mr. Mousavi. He is the man most prepared to interact with US Government and deliver on any results that such a dialogue can achieve. Indeed he has been seeking such a dialogue since 2002.

  38. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Yes, the behavior of Mr. Mousavi has been quite puzzling to me; the man seems to have been bent on creating a crisis [declaring himself a winner at midnight Staurday – Iran time] followed by a cell-phone based campaign to get young men into the streets. And then that color green. Astonishing!
    I think that the Office of the Supreme Jurisprudent has, in fact, kept the constitutional order in tact over the last 30 years. As far as I know, the only other Muslim state with that achievement has been Malaysia and there you have a complex governing system in which the King is selected among a number of Sultans of the Federation and he also assumes the Rulership of Muslims.
    You might be right about your Guardians Council. But then may be they had no alternative than to let him run – on what grounds could they deny a War Prime Minister?
    My impression, based on the Internet sources, has been that the Iranian Government had anticipated the current situation and had prepared for it. They were aware, as you say, of the possibility of a color revolution and planned accordingly.
    I think that the results of the elections indicates a polity in which there is an enormous desire for modifications of the current security-based policies and practices of the political life in Iran. I think any government in Iran has to take measures to address the aspirations and desires of the 13 million voters that supported Mr. Mousavi.
    Personally, I do not see that hapenning until the US-Iran Cold War is terminated.

  39. marcus says:

    We are so used to having a fool as President we discount rationality at our top leadership. You have a leader in Washington that realizes the wreckage resulting from bombing Iran. An American attack on Iran will alienate the Iraqis too. Americans realize the mistake of attacking and occupying Iraq.
    All of the above point to no military attack on Iran.

  40. Curious says:

    NYPD could train the Iranian police in more effective riot control techniques.
    Posted by: Babak Makkinejad | 14 June 2009 at 10:36 AM
    NYPD is good at crowd control for large venue. But they will resort to violent first the minute there is real anti government riot campaign. Plus, too fat to chase anything except donuts.

    South Korean riot police is the most experience group in the planet. They have to withstand a decade long student protest that finally brought down the military regime. They train like roman army. The students all have army basic training.
    Anything except knives and guns are fair game in Korean riot. The entire city’s major avenues are build like rioting arena. The police has to maintain line against molotovs and portable flame gas throwers. No guns.
    Every other student riots will in the end learn all Korean students tricks. They were the first on everything. That Tehran police won’t last another 10 months once Iranian students start learning to riot in earnest. Plastics handcuffs, molotov, homemade chemicals, military manuals, police communications hacks, etc. The students have the entire internet on their hand, counter insurgencies manual, cia improvised explosive handbook, riot police manuals around the world plus youtube and the biggest brain on the street. They are going to win once they set their mind on things. No amount of religious bullshit or police brutality will be able to suppress determined group of students. (You know the drill. Iran Islamic Revolution emerged out of student revolution.) It’s a question of orderly reform or by riot.
    training clip of Korean riot police.
    The height of student riot.
    The scariest student riot I’ve ever seen.

  41. FB Ali says:

    I share your pessimism regarding the ultimate outcome, though I do not think the administration will declare the election fraudulent. With the unravelling of the Afghan-Pakistan situation (as I discussed in my post “Losing Pakistan”), we can all look forward to interesting times ahead.

  42. arbogast says:

    Israel’s “Spanish Civil War” warm-up in Lebanon gives us the pattern for the coming effort in Iran.
    Troops on the ground? No way. Didn’t work in Lebanon, won’t work in Iran. And Colonel Lang is so very, very right: the US, nor Israel, has the money to support two fronts, much less a third in a country much bigger than Iraq bordering on Pakistan.
    What the Israeli’s want is a bombing campaign to destroy as much infrastructure in Iran as possible. Nuclear weapons? Israel knows Iran doesn’t have them. But Israel out of anger and envy wants to destroy Iranian civilization, just as they attempted to destroy Lebanese civilization.
    So, we must expect “Birthpangs of a New Middle East, Part Deux“: a sustained Israeli and US bombing campaign against Iranian infrastructure and civilian targets, perhaps even some military targets.
    After that?
    Expect the major powers to line up like so many dutiful eunuchs behind the US and Israel. What else are they to do?

  43. Yohan says:

    Babak, I don’t see how it must necessarily follow that Ahmadinejad campaigning for 4 years must mean a landslide victory. It’s the equivalent of saying: “It’s the economy, stupid, and Ahmadinejad drove it into the ground during times of record oil income. Therefore, Ahmadinejad couldn’t have won.”
    I would also caution everyone here against reading too much into the big media outlets during the middle of this. Their ability(and indeed their will) to cover this is almost nil. Quite frankly we don’t know what is really going on.

  44. jr786 says:

    I watched the debates on Press tv and followed the campaign closely; Press tv is quite good, I think.
    I’m suprised a bit at the margin but not the result. Ahmadinijad ran a good campaign and seemed to have plenty of supporters -compare the relative head-covering of hijab and you can get a pretty good idea of relative support among women, at least.
    In the debate between him and Mousavi,I thought Mousavi was rude, ill-mannered and he was uncouth. Take your pick. They attacked each other equally.
    @FB Ali:
    I think Cole is Bahai, but am not sure. If so, it would explain why he has always slammed the Islamic revolution. He wanted a result and didn’t get it.
    I’ve heard all kinds of conflicting things about this election but to me the main point is the Iranians voted for Iran, not to please the West. Besides, they could have elected anyone and the US/ISrael would still attack them.
    I think Col. Lang is right to a point but in the end the Iranians will not be safe as long as they pursue a nuclear program – something that each candidate pledged to do.

  45. Babak Makkinejad says:

    I think the news of economic mismanagement under Mr. Ahmadinejad are inaccurate.
    I am not suggesting that visiting every single Iranian province twice in 4 years [with the cabinet], conducting government business, and dloling out projects and money is a guaranteed path to election victory. My point was to suggest that Mr. Ahmadinejad’s victory has been plausible.
    In addition, like Ho Chi Min and his black peasant trousers, Mr. Ahmadinejad has been cultivating an image of a humble pious man-servant of the Iranian people. There is a lot of frustration in Iran with regards to the official and un-offical corruption specially with the children of the elite.
    Great powers normally try to get a lesser power to do their (dirty) work for them. A combined US-Israel attack against Iran is implausible.

  46. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Iran is never safe, with or without a nuclear program.
    In WWI Iran was invaded by Imperial Russia, Ottoman Turkey, and Great Britain even though she was declared her neutrality.
    In WWII, she was invaded by USSR, Great Britain, and later US. She had declared her neutrality at the time.
    In Cold War, her neutral government was overthrown and replaced by US and UK.
    She was invaded in 1980 by Iraq which supported to the hilt by assorted Arab states, US and EU.
    The Iranian leaders have concluded that they have to rely on their own resources to improve Iranian security. No internatyional instrument of disarmament, no security guarantee of any sort, no pledges of non-interference will carry any weight with them in my opinion.

  47. johnf says:

    The American government, in several statements leading up to this election, said that their process of negotiation would continue with Iran which ever candidate won. I thought their statements extremely level-headed and pragmatic.
    Obama cannot afford a war with Iran. The US is bust. And what price would oil go up to?

  48. PeterHug says:

    If China were to impose sanctions on the US for whatever reason, they would likely take the form of mandatory MINIMUM importation quotas, rather than embargoes…a bit of a different approach, but with the same intended result of ruining the recipient.

  49. Patrick Lang says:

    I can’t believe that a lot of you think countries and people go to war as rational actors. amazing!!! pl

  50. Babak Makkinejad says:

    I would like to present to you a plausible argument regarding the Iranian elections.
    The urabn/rural population ratio in Iran is 60/40. And we have had 40 million votes cast.
    Assuming 2/3 rural voters cast their vote for Mr. Ahmadinejad – whom they knew rather well due to his trips – that gives 10 million to him in rural areas and 5 million to Mr. Mousavi.
    I will assume a 50-50 split between Ahmadinejad-Mousavi support in urban areas. [In Tabriz Mr. Ahmadinejad got 54% of the vote – according to the Iranian election comission – if I am not mistaken]. Each candidate will then have 12 Million votes in urban areas.
    The totals for Mr. Ahmadinejad would then be 22 million and for Mr. Mousavi 17 million.
    These numbers are close to actual figures published in the Iranian press – 24.5 and 13.2 respectively for Mr. Ahmadinejad and Mr. Mousavi.
    To believe that 10 million votes have been switched is to believe that 2/3 of the urban and rural populations had cast their vote for Mr. Mousavi as well as thousands of people being complicit in the switching of votes.

  51. J says:

    How do we the U.S. cast off the yolk of AIPAC-Israeli slavery BEFORE more U.S. personnel are sacrificed on THEIR WAR God Israel’s sacrificial altar?

  52. curious says:

    I think that the Office of the Supreme Jurisprudent has, in fact, kept the constitutional order in tact over the last 30 years. As far as I know, the only other Muslim state with that achievement has been Malaysia and there you have a complex governing system in which the King is selected among a number of Sultans of the Federation and he also assumes the Rulership of Muslims.
    Personally, I do not see that hapenning until the US-Iran Cold War is terminated.
    Posted by: Babak Makkinejad | 14 June 2009 at 12:17 PM
    Sometimes I really think Iran doesn’t know what it’s doing in fundamental way. Iran is the only constitutional Islamic country with “election”.
    Malaysia is the butt joke in southeast asia. Really, I dont think you know how funny your claim is, bringing in malaysia. It is the only southeast asian country that didn’t fight for their own independent. (outside of Brunei, but they are an amusement park, not a country.) malaysia didn’t write their constitution, the british was in the middle of it all. After 1963 independence, UMNO was defacto only party running Until 1988. They run unopposed. Up until 2008, UMNO controls 2/3 the parliement and can change the constitution whenever they feel like it. And change they did. They rigged the election law left and right. You think you have funny election. The malaysian write the rule as they go along.
    At any rate, suddenly the people are SICK of them, EVERYBODy. the hardline islamists, the chinese, the indians, the middle class,… they band together and kicked out UMNO. These are the faction that can’t stand each other before. They literally pnch each other face inside parliement building. (one reason why UMNO can stay on top for so long. UMNO and their ilk, think they have god given right to everything just because they are borned. (incompetent, corruption, …yadda yadda…
    My point, I don’t think Iran realises that it is THE ONLY constitutional Islamic country with election. The next big one is Egypt (their army is US supplied.) and Saudi (can’t find their own ass in bright daylight, nevermind operating their military toys) Iran is the biggest and most advance independent Islamic country that is not under US control. (boy are you fucked or what)
    But US is the least of your problem. I don’t think you know you already won war with US. What you have is identity crisis. You can’t exist without the revolution. You can’t move away from the structural foundation laid during the revolution, while time has changed and people demand something else. And you don’t have the mechanism to incorporate what the people want!
    That’s your problem.
    no amount of religious BS-ing or guardian force can explain away the situation. You are in the middle of identity crisis. The constitutional structure is clashing with what people wants.
    People are unhappy. (Make the people happy, you can have whatever form of government you want. nobody cares.)

  53. lowlander says:

    Babak Makkinejad:
    wrote those words in my comment .. not me, alas. But they were astute were they not?

  54. curious says:

    Update 6
    The latest news across the Twitter wires is that the University in Tehran has been invaded, Tear Gas has been shot, and many Student’s are injured and dead.
    no confirmation. but this is bad.
    next: dissolution of public trust, and all students go underground.
    The proper steps should be: invite students to write reports, give input and evaluate current situation. This should defuse the situation and fix current imbalance.

  55. Arun says:

    Babak: So the extra large turnout was to return an incumbent?

  56. curious says:

    Tehran Tehran University Dormitory 24Khordad Tazahorat

  57. COL,
    I can’t believe that a lot of you think countries and people go to war as rational actors.
    Indeed! Thucydides says that the Athenians articulated the reasons for war as fear, honor, and interests (p.43 of the Landmark edition). In the case of Iran v. U.S. et al, I would argue that all three emotions are on high display. The mutual fear that causes one to seek a nuclear deterrent and the other to prevent it. The mutual honor that causes one to still be hurt nearly 40 years after a humiliation and the other to remember intrusions years and centuries before that. And the interests almost nakedly displayed by other major and minor powers in seeing both countries brought low by war.
    Yep, it does seem inevitable doesn’t it? I only hope that we can still turn off the path before the first missile flies.

  58. curious says:

    old archive.
    In 2007, Iran arrested and interrogated Haleh Esfandiari, an academic linked to Soros’ Open Society Institute. The Iranians accused her of plotting to lure Iranian reformers and dissidents into a network aimed at devising a non-violent overthrow of the Islamic government.
    The ministry said the foundation had “played key roles in intrigues that have led to colourful revolutions in former Soviet republics in recent years” and now aimed to overthrow Iran’s government.
    “In primary interrogations, she reiterated that the Soros Foundation has established an unofficial network with the potential of future broader expansion, whose main objective is overthrowing the system,” it said.
    Esfandiari’s alleged confession then led to the arrest of another Soros/ Open Society associate, Kian Tajbakhsh, an Iranian-American social scientist. The Iranian government called Tajbakhsh “the manager and representative of American Soros Foundation in Iran.” Both Esfandiari and Tajbakhsh were eventually freed after wrangling between the Iranian and American governments, but not before eliciting the following “confession” from Tajbakhsh.
    The long-term goal of the Soros Foundation is to achieve an open society [in Iran]. The way to achieve this is to create a rift between the rulers and the people. Through this rift, those parts of civil society which were formed and strengthened according to the concept of open society will exert pressure on the rulers to change their conduct. This rift can be created like what happened in Georgia, or else this conduct can be altered gradually, through elections and other “soft” methods. In order to create this rift, either you weaken the central government, or else you strengthen that part of civil society which opposes the government.

  59. curious says:

    Holy shit….
    From: Josh Block of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, 202-639-5273 or 202-997-4614 (mobile)
    Revolution From Within: Can the Iranian People Reclaim the Republic? (Convention Center – ROOM 144 ABC):
    — Mr. Philo Dibble, deputy assistant secretary, U.S. Department of State
    — Ms. Haleh Esfandiari(*), Middle East Project consulting director, Woodrow Wilson Center
    Haleh Esfandiari is no firebrand opponent of the regime in Tehran . As director of the Middle East Program at the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington , D.C. , the Iranian-born scholar is known as an advocate of U.S. engagement with the mullahs and supporter of the “reformists” associated with former President Mohammad Khatami. But those distinctions don’t count for much with the people who now hold her hostage in Tehran ‘s infamous Evin prison.
    Ms. Esfandiari has been a prisoner of the Ayatollahs for the past five months, since her U.S. and Iranian passports were stolen by knife-wielding assailants during one of her routine visits to Tehran to see her 93-year-old mother. Rather than issue her new travel documents, agents from the ministry of intelligence subjected her to four months of intensive questioning, culminating with demands that she “cooperate.” She refused. She was remanded to Evin prison earlier this month. On Monday, she was charged with attempting to overthrow the Islamic Republic, according to Iranian state news agencies.
    Her peril should not be underestimated: In 2003, Canadian-Iranian photojournalist Zahra Kazemi was murdered in Evin. The Iranian newspaper Kayhan claims Ms. Esfandiari is a former head of the ” Iran section of AIPAC” (the U.S. Israel lobby), which is untrue, and that she has lived in Israel , which is also untrue, and that she is an agent of the Mossad, which is absurd.
    Meanwhile, Iran has also detained Iranian-American consultant Kian Tajbakhsh, who was working for George Soros’s Open Society Institute. “We are concerned for his safety and call for his immediate release,” the institute said in a statement.
    Both Mr. Soros and the Wilson Center are critics of the Bush Doctrine in the Middle East, and Wilson Center President Lee Hamilton has been prominently urging U.S. negotiations with Iran . Mr. Hamilton wrote Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in February requesting Ms. Esfandiari’s release. He received no reply.

  60. Ingolf says:

    You’re no doubt right, Colonel, but perhaps there are grounds to hope that “reason” might better the odds of not going to war.

  61. curious says:

    k. this is boring now. Same old people. This is 50’s rehash. The Shah, RAND, aipac, neocon, …wtf?
    no wonder the Iranian goes bonker. A lot of students are going to die for sure because of these clowns.
    Tips to Iranian: liquidate the idiots/waste them. Who cares, they gonna keep fucking people all over otherwise. But leave the students alone, they don’t know better.
    The National Endowment for Democracy, in its tireless effort to give democracy a bad name, initiated a project called “World Movement for Democracy” in 1999. The project’s acronym, WMD, may very well be a bad inside joke among the guardians of the empire today.
    On WMD’s steering committee sits Mahnaz Afkhami, President of “Women’s Learning Partnership for Rights, Development and Peace.” One of WMD’s projects is “International Women’s Democracy Network,” whose “secretariat [is] to be housed at an existing network with a substantial trans-regional membership, currently the Women’s Learning Partnership.” Iran must be close to the heart of this circle.
    Afkhami, the first Minister for Women’s Affairs under the Pahlavi regime, is naturally a friend of Reza Pahlavi, the son of the deposed Shah, who has not given up on the dream of restoration and is busily trying to organize Iranian exiles, not just monarchists but also leftists and separatists, in a vain attempt at regime change (Connie Bruck, “Exiles: How Iran’s Expatriates Are Gaming the Nuclear Threat,” New Yorker, 6 March 2006). What does Afkhami say about the former crown prince? “He’s a regular guy” (qtd. in Franklin Foer, “Reza Pahlavi’s Next Revolution: Successor Story,” The New Republic, 3 January 2002). That says everything about the kind of world she lives in.

  62. Arun says:

    It seems – I’d like to see first-hand reports – that the government has started burning the ballots – why would there be any hurry to do that, if everything was fair and square?

  63. curious says:

    Pahlevi court? lol. No doubt Zbig is in the picture somewhere.
    Note to Obama: dude, this is kinda selling out big time. You screwed people for aipac using national asset. People dies for what? Oil, israel, and old kings? Very twisted.
    Jahanbegloo and Reja News
    Reja News, a super conservative website which has been active over the past few days in attacks against Hossein Moussavian, a senior Iranian diplomat recently arrested in Tehran, published a report in which Haleh Esfandiari was named the Zionists’ agent in Iran. A part of Ramin Jahanbegloo’s confessions in which his relations with this Iranian researcher has been called “of a political/security nature” has been quoted in the report, declaring “I met a woman named Haleh Esfandiari in Canada (who is an anti-Revolutionary Iranian, married to a Jewish man), and through her I established contact with certain organizations in the US, and I received a scholarship in the US to research intellectuality in Iran.” The wording resembles the literature of forced confessions.
    The report then describes Dr. Esfandiari’s activities in Ayandegan Newspaper, saying: “She is an effective member of the pre-Revolution Zionist Lobby in the Pahlavi court, who along with her husband founded the Zionist Ayandegan Newspaper in Tehran. The interesting point is that Haleh Esfandiari remained in Iran for a time after the Revolution, but with the ban on Ayandegan Newspaper, she fled Iran in August of 1979 for Israel.”
    Reja News which withholds its source continues: “It is said that she was the architect of AIPAC’s conference two years ago, which met under the slogan of ‘Now Is The Time to Stop Iran,’ suggesting a review of all avenues to confront Iran’s nuclear programs. This conference’s motto, ‘Iran, the Point of Understanding Between US and Israel,’ tried to review ways for coordinating Israel and US efforts to apply pressure on Islamic Republic of Iran. George Bush, Condoleeza Rice, Hillary Cinton, John Bolton, Ihud Ulmert and Amir Perez were some of the speakers in this conference. It is said that the decision of war with Lebanon’s Hezbollah was reached in this conference.”

  64. eakens says:

    Al Arabiya reported shortly after the election results were announced that 3 had been killed. Where are the photos? videos? of the act or bodies?

  65. President Obama’s stated policy is to engage Iran looking toward serious discussion by the end of the year. IMO this is a reasonable and important policy goal.
    President Obama has also stated, correctly, that the internal political situation in Iran as to the elections should not deter our attempt at engagement. Vice President Biden has raised some concerns about the election but also has said correctly that we want to engage nonetheless.
    At issue are short, medium, and long range state interests on both sides.
    Given the particular constitutional order in the Islamic Republic of Iran it is evident that the appropriate level of engagement is the President of the United States with the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic. The “president” office and role in the Islamic Republic is not the decisive office in the formulation and conduct of foreign policy.
    Thus,it would seem that President Obama will of necessity, and properly so given the constitutional order of the Islamic Republic, be engaging with the Supreme Leader through some mechanism to be established by the two sides.
    Under our constitutional system, our President is the “supreme leader” of our foreign policy. Congress has a vital constitutional role with respect to appointments, advice, appropriations, oversight and the like. BUT the President of the United States formulates our foreign policy and executes it.
    The Iranian side needs to understand this with great clarity. Judging from what I can see via the Internet, there are many qualified academic experts (not a few of whom are Iranian-American or who have studied and lived in the US) at various Iranian think tanks and universities as well as many experienced diplomats and civil servants. This is a sophisticated country and culture.
    By the President’s and Vice President’s remarks, it seems the US side is crystal clear as to where the constitutional authority for foreign policy rests in the Islamic Republic.
    I share Col. Lang’s deep concerns about the ease with which the US public can be whipped into a war psychology by the pro-Israel mass media. We have seen this with the unnecessary Iraq War.
    I also think the Iranian side needs to be crystal clear about the use of nuclear weapons by the United States. Secretary of State Clinton has been about as explicit as one can be and that should be an indicator. Secretary Gates has made some firm statements about lessons being taught.
    I do not believe that nuclear weapons should have been used by the United States against Japan in World War II BUT they were. So US policy historically has been to use them when pushed to an extreme. This is not a hypothetical matter. The public justification then was to save American lives which a land invasion would cost. Would anyone seriously doubt that this same argument will be used in the future? Col. Lang is fully justified in his concerns IMO.
    What next? When the dust settles some it would seem logical for the President of the United States to undertake the state to state engagement which he has clearly indicated he will attempt. If the Iranian side is not responsive then…

  66. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Thank you for correcting my misunderstanding of Malaysia. It is then clear that the Islamic Republic of Iran has been the only Muslim polity over the last 100 years in which there have been competetive 9but restricted) elections within the same constitutional order for 30 years.
    I should think those people who care deeply about representative government and the rule of law would be supporting that dispensation in Iran rather than try to pursue a chimera based on European models.

  67. Babak Makkinejad says:

    I cannot answer your question.
    I presented a few plausibility arguments that, I believe, are consistent with what has been observed earlier.
    Mr. Ahmadinejad got about 60% of the votes in the previous presidential election.
    A 50-50 ration of pro & con electorate in the urban areas also explains why you could spend weeks in those areas and only meet one group or the other.
    The burden of proof of massive cheating rests on those that make such claims.
    It is my opinion that the so-called Reform movement has just committed suicide in Iran by throwing this fit & tantrum. For it seems to me that the leaders of that movement care more about their own political fortune than that of their country. Please contrast this with the behavior of Mr. Bush, Mr. McCain, or late Mr. Nixon – as example – others in the United States; they cared about the United States more than anything else.

  68. Mac Nayeri says:

    What Rafsanjani does next is key….

  69. Arun says:

    You may be right. Whichever way it goes, I hope it is sorted out in a non-violent manner. I think the process is more important than the outcome.

  70. J says:

    Curious, Babak,
    Don’t forget Mousavi ties to Manuchehr Ghorbanifar.
    Mir-Hossein Mousavi’s Iran/Contra Connection?
    What do Michael Ledeen (the American ‘neo-conservative’), Mir-Hossein Mousavi (the Iranian presidential candidate of ‘chagne’) and Adnan Khashoggi (the opulent Saudi Arabian jet-setter) have in common?
    They are all good friends and associates of Manuchehr Ghorbanifar (an Iranian arms merchant, an alleged MOSSAD double agent, and a key figure in the Iran/Contra Affair, the arms-for-hostages deals between Iran and the Reagan administration). In one or two, at most three, degrees of separation, these people hung out in the same circles and very likely drank to the same toasts.
    You can find all kinds of trivia about Ghorbanifar in the Walsh Report on the Iran/Contra affair. In Chapter 8, for example, we learn:
    “Ghorbanifar, an Iranian exile and former CIA informant who had been discredited by the agency as a fabricator, was a driving force behind these proposals [for arms-for-hostages deal];” or, “Ghorbanifar, as broker for Iran, borrowed funds for the weapons payments from Khashoggi, who loaned millions of dollars to Ghorbanifar in “bridge financing'” for the deals. Ghorbanifar repaid Khashoggi with a 20 percent commission after being paid by the Iranians,” (see: http://www.fas.org/irp/offdocs/walsh/chap_08.htm).
    Here is a bit from an article by Time magazine that shows Ghorbanifar’s circle of associates; it is from a January 1987 cover story (The Murky World of Weapons Dealers; January 19, 1987):
    “By [Ghorbanifar’s] own account he was a refugee from the revolutionary government of Ayatullah Ruhollah Khomeini, which confiscated his businesses in Iran, yet he later became a trusted friend and kitchen adviser to Mir Hussein Mousavi, Prime Minister in the Khomeini government. Some U.S. officials who have dealt with Ghorbanifar praise him highly. Says Michael Ledeen, adviser to the Pentagon on counterterrorism: “[Ghorbanifar] is one of the most honest, educated, honorable men I have ever known.” Others call him a liar who, as one puts it, could not tell the truth about the clothes he is wearing,” (emphasis added).
    This second bit is from Chapter 1 of Walsh Iran/Contra Report: (http://www.fas.org/irp/offdocs/walsh/chap_01.htm)
    “On or about November 25, 1985, Ledeen received a frantic phone call from Ghorbanifar, asking him to relay a message from [Mir-Hossein Mousavi] the prime minister of Iran to President Reagan regarding the shipment of the wrong type of HAWKs. Ledeen said the message essentially was “we’ve been holding up our part of the bargain, and here you people are now cheating us and tricking us and deceiving us and you had better correct this situation right away.”
    “In early May, North and CIA annuitant George Cave met in London with Ghorbanifar and Nir, where the groundwork finally was laid for a meeting between McFarlane and high-level Iranian officials, as well as financial arrangements for the arms deal. Among the officials Ghorbanifar said would meet with an American delegation were the president and prime minister [Mousavi] of Iran and the speaker of the Iranian parliament,” (emphasis added).
    And to remind how Michael Ledeen became involved in the Iran/Contra affair in 1985, here is a bit from Chapter 15 of Walsh Report (http://www.fas.org/irp/offdocs/walsh/chap_15.htm):
    “[McFarlane] authorized Michael A. Ledeen, a part-time NSC consultant on anti-terrorism, to ask Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres to check on a report that the Israelis had access to good sources on Iran. By early August 1985, Ledeen’s talks had led to a direct approach by Israeli officials to McFarlane, to obtain President Reagan’s approval to ship U.S.-supplied TOW missiles to Iran in exchange for the release of American hostages in Beirut. McFarlane said he briefed the President, Regan, Shultz, Weinberger, Casey and perhaps the Vice President about the proposal in July and August 1985.40 McFarlane said that Casey recommended that Congress not be informed of the arms sales.”
    There you have it. Now, I’m no investigative journalist, so I’ll leave it to the professionals to dig deeper into this.
    But, I do have to wonder aloud: Seeing how we cannot ignore his ‘neo-con’ credentials and that Michael Ledeen maintained his very good relations with Ghorbanifar, (who at least used to be) a good friend of Mir-Hossein Mousavi (the ‘candidate of change’ in the Iranian presidential elections); and given the support that Mousavi’s candidacy has been receiving from the American ‘moderates’, maybe this kind of ‘change’ is the ‘regime change’ the Americans have had in mind for Iran?

  71. jedermann says:

    The extraordinary haste with which the results of the election were announced, even after the polls were held open in many places for several hours after the official closing time, combined with the apparent post-election taunting of Mousavi by Ahmadinejad suggest that even if Ahmadinejad has legitimately won and by such a margin the message that was meant to be received both at home and abroad is that the new boss is the old boss (Khamenei) and it was never going to be otherwise. It was a very in-your-face demonstration of control by the Iranian establishment.

  72. eakens,
    last week I heard from some Arab diplomatic circles in DC that the talk on the diplo circuit was that Iran had indicated to the White House that Ross was not acceptable as an interlocutor….a reasonable position I should think.
    Ross was a really stupid appointment in the first place…why should he, a paid agent of the Jewish Agency, be in any sensitive position of national trust in the US?

  73. curious says:

    I should think those people who care deeply about representative government and the rule of law would be supporting that dispensation in Iran rather than try to pursue a chimera based on European models.
    Posted by: Babak Makkinejad | 15 June 2009 at 09:00 AM
    Babak, seriously. It’s not about freedom, democracy, or all that high horse idea. Even if you were the most democratic christian nation, you would still be attacked.
    1. You have oil
    2. You are not under US control
    3. You have serious problem with your old king. He still has giant assets in banks, and he has bought US congress. (I laugh my ass off, reading Pahlevi court connected to Iran regime change operation. wtf?) You should attack his banking asset now.
    Anyway, you seriously need to reform, you have to exponentially increase economic growth to match weapons race and security threat. You have to maintain 6-10% high growth for next decade before the oil party is over.
    For that you need to open up and connect to global trade. Locking up border and communication line are only temporary solution. You will kill your economy and make your people stupid otherwise. Iran will be so far behind in technology and cultural development, a bored gang of teenagers can take over the place in 20 years. The attack by various interest group specially Israel and US factions will not stop. Get used to it.
    Security and control have to come from sophisticated techniques and well functioning institutions.
    Iran needs serious reform. Time has changed. You need to let your people grow.
    My take:
    1. your security laws and institutions need reform badly. It can’t handle modern challenges.
    a) create much stronger and sophisticated internal security services. (counter terrorism, counter espionage, military, internal police)
    b) riot police. You are an Islamic country, by god. People pray and move together in large number. First thing you need to have is good crowd control and professional riot police. You have to accept that people will riot and somebody will incite riot annually. Be ready. (plus it’s fun) Soros and friends will keep coming for more, so why not have it? They want riot? Have a rioting party. Build your city for annual rioting fest. Your police needs practice anyway.
    2. stop beating up people for that silly dress code. It’s childish and pisses people off. You want the girls start driving car bombing your secret police headquarter or remote detonate legislative office? You think jundhullah is a problem, wait until the smart girls start downloading advance chemistry book. So quit it. It will happen sooner or later if you keep ragging about it.
    3. You don’t beat up your people because they talk to outsider, you track your external enemy and destroy them. Your people is your foundation.
    4. Iran is in the middle of central asia, a prime location for shipping and banking. Why is its GDP so low? You should be as rich as Norway or Denmark (and they live on frozen icebergs near north pole.) You should control Asia-Europe banking route and world energy supply route.
    5. Stop obsessing with US and Israel. Grow up man, revolution is over. Live at the top is like that, everybody nipping at everybody else. Iran wants to be superpower? Get used to it. That’s live at the top. Develop counter measure.
    6. Build your nuke, do trade war, oil price war, currency war, banking war, shipping lane war, ..do the entire South Korean global domination dance. (they control the planet with much less resource than you do.) Nobody can stop you if you want it bad enough. The world is big enough and everybody needs oil. You should be able to control the entire middle east ferrous and aluminum industry by now. You are not bound by WTO and you can dump and destroy other people’s steel market with ease. In fact, I can’t think any country in the world that is ready to take off better than Iran, outside of BRIC.
    anyway, get ready. next operation against Iran is in less than 20 months. You still have Israel to deal with. (what is it with Iran and Israel anyway?)

  74. Babak Makkinejad says:

    You wrote: ” …don’t think Iran realises that it is THE ONLY constitutional Islamic country with election. Iran is the biggest and most advance independent Islamic country that is not under US control.”
    “What you have is identity crisis. You can’t exist without the revolution. You can’t move away from the structural foundation laid during the revolution, while time has changed and people demand something else. And you don’t have the mechanism to incorporate what the people want!”
    You might be correct in characterizing Iran as a being in a state of post revolutionary identity crisis.
    Mr. Ahmadinejad had stated to Mr. Putin several years ago that he wanted to make Iran a more normal country.

  75. Babak Makkinejad says:

    One of the non-Western statest that in the 19-th century began its process of internal reconfiguration and change was Thailand. I think they started before Meiji Restoration.
    And yet, they are so far from where they would have wish to be.
    Iran is not any different.

  76. curious says:

    Mr. Ahmadinejad had stated to Mr. Putin several years ago that he wanted to make Iran a more normal country.
    Posted by: Babak Makkinejad | 15 June 2009 at 03:26 PM
    Putin is definitely squinting his eyes looking at what’s going on in Iran right now. For some reason, I have the sense that Putin is among the few people who understand how everybody thinks.
    Anyway, him and the chinese are now recalculating the prospect of pro-western Iran Republic (without the Islamic). SCO will have different picture altogether. US aims in Iran in nothing short of creation of non nuclear western leaning republic. I feel sorry for the youth in Iran who thinks there will be change. The embargo will still be there plus endless nuclear inspection and more stringent sanction. They will learn apathy, betrayal, and the true meaning of patriotism. (I give it 5 years) After prolonged embargo, Israel will attack Iran. Or somebody higher up will sell Iran out.
    About the election. Let me guess what happens.
    -The fraud reports turn out to be correct? (because it was designed to be correct. Somebody made sure they happened as reported. Missing ballot, burning, tampered, double entry, etc. This is part of the media operation.)
    – Nobody pays attention to the television feed circuit. (that’s how they create piece of the “fraud” puzzle)
    – Iran count the ballot using computers connected to internet, phone line or banking server. (instead of manual tally) This is black box voting. It happened in netherland, indonesia, ukraine, georgia. the calculation was tampered externally. Everybody was surprised of the result. Even people who thinks they have the election in the pocket.
    The entire operation probably takes less than 5 persons, the rest are “street team”. The operation consist of 2 parts, the creation of actual fraud. And telling people the fraud. The rest are common knowledge, pulic suspicion, and making deal with “the selected recipient of regime change”
    If ahmadinejad holds on, the next phase of operation will kicks in. (the bloody part) Weapons, aids, stuff will start entering into student hands. If Mousavi in, the process of turning Iran into republic begins. Regardless both wil lead to no nuclear republic. bonus israel attack.
    But the “guardian of revolution” bit is new. Nobody can calculate how they decide or how the public will react. So really, amazingly, the guardian of revolution now has to decide what is the revolution, if the people still wants it, and how to react.
    This is the moment of truth for the revolution.

  77. Peter Hug says:

    rick –
    I certainly agree with what you say…
    I guess the phrase, “hoist upon your own petard” might begin to come into play.
    And I say that as someone who has done 19th century military impressions (in a reenactment context) and who knows the feelings attendant upon a hangfire and a missfire…

  78. curious says:

    One of the non-Western statest that in the 19-th century began its process of internal reconfiguration and change was Thailand. I think they started before Meiji Restoration.
    Iran is not any different.
    Posted by: Babak Makkinejad | 15 June 2009 at 06:21 PM
    Maybe I should go to Tehran then. lol.
    I never understand Thailand. It’s like land of dream, beautiful, but with head inducing traffic jam. Very graceful land. They have that delicious noodle with coconut milk. Absolutely marvelous.
    Oh btw, you have enter the “let’s make a lot of money phase, in failed regime change.
    The moment of truth of real revolution vs. externally backed riot is here.
    just make sure, your troops, your religious leaders are with you and everybody is in the same page. You also have to make sure your security force does not enter violent first! Very important. The last one is the very essence of CIA backed riot. To incite riot that causes government to kill people in front of camera.
    Next, all you have to do is wait until a)weapons supplied by foreign government enter Iran (then the entire fake revolution collapses over night. then you can kill everybody. Every single one of them.) b)the general public get tired of the idiot fakers. They will start whining about how hard their revolution is. (people absolutely hate idiots who doesn’t work for anything but demand everything. then destroying everything.)
    You play “weak hand”, never resort to violence, play helpless until you find the weapons or first car explosion. Wait until they commit violence and people gets tired of them. Then you win. Few weeks at most.
    you can even ask parliament to pass “people can protest” if they want to law. (the noisier the better. People will get tired of street riot after 2-3 weeks.)
    In the meantime. Buy oil and gold.
    This is the revolution, I suppose. The side of the people.

  79. very nice to blog tanks.

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