Adonis Diaries

Posts Tagged ‘Iran

This confusing business of spreading institutional propaganda?

Western media in the “confused business”: Writing Iran when meaning Saudi Kingdom?

Mind you that this article was posted in 2012

The Olympic game charter prohibits States to discriminate between genders  in at least two clauses. And yet, Saudi Arabia will not let women participate in sports, while Iran do send sport-women to games…

Suppose Iran was discriminating, wouldn’t international outcry be deafening us? But nobody is willing to make waves when Saudi Arabia is the culprit…

Saudi Arabia Wahhabi, theocratic and absolute monarchic State has executed 76 people in 2011, such as women condemned for witchcraft, non-noble class homosexuals, sodomizers, adulterous women, drug traffickers, apostasy…and cutting hands of robbers…But the UN is not interested in what’s going on in Saudi Arabia.

Except the UN High Commissariat for human rights, no international institutions bring up these violations in Saudi Kingdom…

Neither the UN Council, nor the G20 (that met this year in the Kingdom), nor the International Monetary Fund (IMF)…care of what’s going on in Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Kingdom is practically untouched and never blamed (the same as this colonial apartheid implant of Israel)…

For example, in 2008, French Sarkozy declared: “Under the vigorous impulse of his Majesty Abdullah, Saudi Arabia is developing a civilized policy…” (Coming from Sarkozy under justice investigation in France and the instigator of the civil war in Libya)

Saudi Arabia impulse is still in funding and supporting the most obscurantist Islamic extremists in Tunisia, Morocco, Mauritania, Algeria, Egypt, Yemen, Syria, Iraq, Lebanon, Mali…

They are funding TV cables channels dedicated to Islamic salafism, erecting Mosques in every street, sending free million of Korans (Wahhabi version), and million of books on “How to subjugate wives and daughters in obeying patriarchal systems…”

Saudi Arabia is lethally crushing youth demonstrations under the banner of “New form of terrorism”, killing peaceful Shia demonstrators in the Eastern region, jailing over 20,000 each year for freedom of expression charges, and has sent military reinforcement into Bahrain to crush the civil uprising, and is supporting the Al Qaeda in Yemen and Somalia…

The irony is that Saudi Arabia is the refuge for all dictators, Tunisia Ben Ali, Egypt, Uganda Idi Amin, many African dictators… And current Tunisia Hamadi Jebali PM visited Saudi Arabia and lauded the good deeds of this archaic monarchy, and refrained from demanding the extradition of Tunisia dictator, or the return of the stolen billion…

Saudi Kingdom would want everyone to believe that the main nemesis is Shia Iran, as Israel would want everyone to believe this strategy…

As  if peaceful nuclear energy program is the enemy to human rights, democracy, freedom of expression…

And it is the Iranian people who are to suffer from economic and financial sanctions, while Saudi Arabia fund and sustain terrorism everywhere in Islamic States

Western media are persisting in the “confused business” of not politically discussing the current US policies in the Arab World: Are they Writing Iran when meaning Saudi Arabia?

The big picture can be described as follows:

1. China keeps the US economy afloat with “fresh money” in buying government bonds

2. Saudi Kingdom keeps the US Federal budget afloat by cyclically infusing funds, particularly in crisis situations such as preemptive military operations, changing “rogue” regimes, enforcing oil embargoes…(And lately, succumbing to Trump blackmails to eliminate hundreds of $billion loans and buying useless weapons Not under the control of the Kingdom military…)

3. The US cyclically rectifies Israel endemic budget deficits, using Saudi Kingdom largess. Can’t we claim that Saudi Arabia is the main funder of the theocratic and apartheid Zionist State?

Is the US cowing to Saudi Arabia strategy of reducing all States in the Middle-East to theocratic Sunni Wahhabi salafism and archaic regimes and encouraging Israel to be a carbon copy of the surrounding States?

Note: Since 2012, Qatar, Bahrain and Gulf Emirates have shared in US order to fund the terrorist movements participating in Syria “civil war”, destabilizing Tunisia, Algeria, Iraq, Somalia, and many African States.

Iran: Hussein, Karbala, Ashura, Shias, Ayatollah marjaa, Wilayat fakih,

Prophet Muhammad refused to designate a successor:  He was aware of his fragile health condition 8 days before he died and he was mentally conscious and able to make this decision.

When Muhammad died, his close relatives such as his 8 wives, his remaining two daughters and his sons-in-laws got in charge of the burial procedures and ceremony.

The leading companions such as Abu Bakr and Omar negotiated transition with the original leading tribes of Medina, called Ansars. 

The Ansars are those who welcomed the Muslims to settle in their city as the tribes of Mecca started persecuting the Muslims in 632.

Abu Bakr was selected Caliph.

The Sunni sect in Islam is this branch that doesn’t mind caliphs not being direct descendants of Muhammad, as long as they are considered from “noble” tribes of Mecca

The Shia sect insisted that caliphs should be direct descendant of Muhammad.

Abu Bakr, Omar bin Khattab, Uthman bin Affan, and Ali bin Abi Taleb were the four caliphs called Rashidun, meaning adult companions who followed Muhammad from the start and fought all his battles. 

They were all from tribes of Mecca, which upset the ansar tribes who welcomed the Muslims and saved them from persecution and permitted them to establishing their first City-State in Yathreb named Medina later on.

It is to be noted that all male sons of Muhammad died in very young age and he had four married daughters.

Two daughters died before him.  The youngest daughter Fatima married Ali, his nephew and later son-in-law.  Hassan and Hussein were the grandsons of Muhammad from Fatima and Ali who were born while the Prophet was alive. Apparently, Muhamad expected one of his grandchildren to become Caliph later on.

One of his daughters had married third Caliph Uthman bin Affan, and who was assassinated in Medina.

Caliph Muawiya bin Ummaya (from the richest tribe in Mecca) was named governor of Damascus by Uthman and contested the caliphat with Ali.

Ali’s troops had the advantage of vanquishing Muawiya troops, but Ali decided to negotiate.  Thus, those against the negotiation as victory was near were called “khawarij” (the ones who abandoned Ali’s troops); they may as well be the first Shias (those who disagreed).

A few khawarij met in Mecca and decided to assassinate both Ali and Muawiya on the same day.  Muawiya’s assassin barely wounded him, but Ali’s assassin was successful as Ali was leading the prayer in Kufa.

Ali might have been the most promising Imam, but he was no political statesman.  

Actually, Aicha, the youngest wife of Muhammad, can be considered the first Imam since she was the most learned and closest person to the prophet and fought for women rights and corrected faked pronouncement by chauvinist male “scholars”. People flocked to her house to listen to her opinions.

After the assassination of Ali, Muawiya established the first hereditary dynasty in Islam with capital Damascus. 

Muawiya struck a deal with Hassan, the eldest of grandchildren of Muhammad.  The deal was that Hassan will be the next caliph after the death of Muawiya.  In a sense, the deal was sharing power between the Sunnis and the Shias in turn.

Muawiya poisoned Hassan:  He cooperated with Hassan’s wife to convince Hassan to wear a poisoned expensive robe that Muawiya sent as gift for the deal.  Then, Muawiya killed Hassan wife and eliminated direct witnesses.

Hussein continued with the deal and left Muawiya at peace from political upheavals. 

Muawiya died and his son Yazid succeeded him as caliph.  Hussein didn’t appreciate this treachery and reclaimed his right according to the deal and moved from Mecca with his family and 72 followers intending to settle in Kufa (southern Iraq).

Three months of marches in the desert brought Hussain to Karbala.

By dawn, Hussein realized that the troops of Yazid had surrounded his small party and cut off the way to the main water sources at the Euphrates River.

Hussein negotiated for 10 days, hoping that the citizens of Kufa will come to the rescue, at no avail.  Hussein was beheaded and his head sent to Caliph Yazid on a spear in 680.

The uneven battle of Karbala was waged during Ashura, the tenth day of the month of Muharram.

The Shias adopted the account story of the engagement in Karbala as written by Hussein Kashefi in his “Garden of Martyrs” and which was widely circulated in the 15th century.  The story goes as follows:

“Hussein was hit by an arrow in the neck while trying to drink from the river.  Ten cavalry men from Yazid army rushed to achieve Hussein in order to receive huge rewards.  Hussein was lying for dead and every time Hussein opened his eyes and looked at the coming killer and the knights would feel shame and retreat.

Commander Chemr was decided to finish the job and sat at Hussein chest.  Hussein asked Chemr to remove his iron mask and show his face, which he did and Hussein said: “This is the first veritable sign.”  

Chemr face looked porcupine with two incisive shooting out his lips.  Hussein asked Chemr to open his shirt and said: “This is the second veritable sign”:  Chemr chest showed scars of leprosy.  Hussein said: “I had a vision last night by the Prophet and He told me how my assassin would look like.”

Hussein asked Chemr: “What day is it?”  Chmer said: “This is the Friday of Ashura”.  Hussain asked “What time is it?”  Chemr replied: “This is the time of prayer.”  Hussein said: “The believers are praying and you are indulging in killing me.  Get off my chest and do your job while I am praying facing Mecca.”

The surviving family members of Hussain were given a roundabout three-month long trip up north Iraq, then north Syria and through Lebanon before descending to Damascus and suffered hardship and humiliation.

Muawiya had made sure to assassinate all males of direct descendant to Muhammad, including the surviving husbands of his daughters and even Muhammad’s wives.

Aicha, the most learned and beloved of Muhammad’s wives, was spared humiliation and assassination for two reasons:

First, she sided with him against Ali after the assassination of the third caliph Uthman and

Second, Aicha was the prime eminence in Islam jurisprudence.  She had gathered all the verses of the Prophet and confronted the Hadith that were lies and incorrect.  Uthman manipulated many verses and officially published the current Koran.

The Shias believe that the Abbassid caliph Al Maamoun assassinated Imam Rida in 817 in the city of Mashhad by poison.

All the streets in Mashhad converge to Imam Rida’s mausoleum and the city welcome 20 million pilgrims per year. The Abbassid dynasty are descendent of one of Muhammad’s uncle Abbas.

Kufa was not spared persecution, even though it didn’t come to succor Hussain.

The new governor Hajaj bin Youssef made the citizens of Kufa check their necks as his first speech started: “I see heads ripening and ready for the harvest…” 

Kufa was renowned for its bad luck of supporting the losing party:  It supported Aicha, the youngest and most beloved wife of Muhammad, against the troops of Ali in the first civil-war battle of the “Camel” around Kufa.

Iran was Sunni before the 16th century.  An Azeri princeShah Ismail, took power of Iran in 1502.

The successor of Ismail decided to have the Shia sect as the kingdom official religion in order to unite Iran against his nemesis the Caliph of the  Ottoman Empire.  

The Ottoman Empire crushed the Iranian army but didn’t venture in resuming the war inside Iran.  The ottoman Empire just got Iraq as one of the wilayats (province) of the Empire.

The Shia sect has a highly structured hierarchy and the curriculum for religious proficiency is lengthy and passes by degrees of study programs.

There are currently 12 “ayatollah marjaa” among the Shias, two of them died recently: Montazeri and Fadhlallah of Lebanon.  

An ayatollah marjaa is the highest cleric who can institute his school of jurisprudence and proclaim fatwas (interpretation opinion on an Islamic law).

The followers of other Ayatollah marjaa do not have to agree with the fatwas of one ayatollah.

Ayatollah Khomeini didn’t vehemently refuse the title of Imam, a title reserved for the “hidden Mahdi” who was declared hidden at the age of 5 in 874.  

The successor of Khomeini, Khamenei, was not even ayatollah and still, he is considered “Supreme Guide” of the “Wilayat fakih” or the rule of the highest religious cleric in jurisprudence.

Note 1:  I read a few articles of Khomeini’s fatwas and I must say that for his so many years of learning theology and Islamic laws left something to be desired.  I think an ayatollah must have also a PhD in a scientific field in addition to religious knowledge.

Note 2: Aicha never could forgive Ali (He was 19 then) for suspecting her to have cheated on Mohammad during a trip where she lost and then found her necklace

Note 3: The main Ayatollahs who taught the Iranian clerics and most of their leaders before the advent of Khomeini were from South Lebanon. Iraqis have their Sistani for Ayatollah

Note 4: The difference among the Shia sects revert to the number (6 or 12) of Mahdis that ended the succession and how tolerant they are for the inflicted suffering during Ashura ceremonies.

The skipper-type is recalling this beauty

Not Linda, though very appropriate

It has been terribly cold these past two weeks,

Lebanon standard of cold, not that terrible with minimal amenities.

We do enjoy a water central heating system…

And I could afford the fuel, mazout.


It is 2 am and watching a movie on TV,

I am not sleepy, but cold is creeping in my bones.

I got inside my “warmer” bed, and could not sleep.

Memories flooding in, dispersing haphazardly, converging, diverging,

Refocusing on a beautiful face.


A beautiful face I met 37 years ago.

It was winter of 1976.

A Friday, and about 8:30 pm.

Alone, as usual, I am to watch a foreign movie,

Shown by the University Film Club at the Microbiology department.


She showed up with her girlfriend. She is blonde, blue/green eyed, not tall, not skinny.

For my candid eyes, just the perfect beauty.

I cowered.

I should have made haste, join her, and say: “Fair lady, have a good look at my face.

I need you to remember my face.

I need you to recollect that this face once told you

“You are the most beautiful girl around…”


The microbiology department, a stupid two flat floors, a couple of microscopes, and an auditorium.

The second “complex” by the Main Library, looking south,

The South long lawn, ideal for mass student demonstrations.

I used to demonstrate around it twice a week,  mostly joining a hundred of Iranian students,

Scanding: “Down with the Shah of Iran”, “Down with US imperialism“, Down with the Savak”

The Shah secret service

Three years later, the Shah fled to exile.

Only Sadat of Egypt dared give him shelter, and where he died of cancer.


No, I didn’t chicken out: I terribly lacked conversational skills, and still do.

No, I didn’t chicken out: I had never carried out a conversation with a beautiful girl,

I didn’t understand girls, or human interconnection…

And time never came to the rescue in any important skills: It aches,

And the aches are exacerbated with time.


A couple of months later, I met her in my apartment.

An old student complex that I shared with a friend studying pharmacy.

I was returning at midnight from the library. Biking in the cold.

It was a cold night, and I must have biked or walked, no other alternatives.

And I had to piss badly and profusely.

I stepped out and this beauty had vanished like a mirage.


“Where is she?” I asked my roommate Fouad.

“You know, the one I once told you was the most beautiful girl around that I met?”

Fouad looked me up in total surprise. “You mean Jennifer?”…

That’s another story: She was taking a pharmacy class with him…

And spending the evening memorizing medical pharmacology terms.

My roommate told me that he had an idea to sleep with her

But will drop this desire for the sake of my fantasie.

Kind of a tacit loyalty. A rare sort of loyalty.

And I had to believe him any which way.


Twelve years later, I met her at Zanzibar, a night club in the town of Norman.

She was sitting alone, at the bar, waiting for the bar to close

and leave with her new beau bartender, serving drinks.


She didn’t change a bit.

Twelve years later, and another round of “higher education” stint,

A stint that grew me old:

My PhD advisor told me: “At your age, I was married with 3 children, 2 boys and a girl”

And he didn’t look that old.


Some people mature fast and very soon.

Maturity? I am waiting for this phase to take a peek at me.

I am  the skipper-type:

From an everlasting naive kid to rotten wise.


I sat by her at the bar and whispered her name: I could still recall her name.

A name that my roommate had told me, long, long time ago.

I introduced myself and simply reminded her of the name of Fouad, my former roommate.

She “recognized” me instantly.


Fouad must have told her about the devastating impression she made on me…

Count on a girl to retrieve a guy’s face, formed in a split-second,

Many years later, a face attached to “You are the most beautiful girl around…”


We had no conversation: She didn’t contribute a word.

We never had an opportunity to talk before.

And I had never heard her voice then, or now.

She didn’t even smiled, not a flicker of a smile.


She was selling pharmaceutical products…

I could have said: “Has one of the two bartenders invited you tonight?

Are you intending to invite a particular bartender…?”

Any small talk, the most outrageous talk would have been swell…

This cavernous silence.  She didn’t change a bit


I bet, if I meet her again, another 37 years later, this girl will still be the same girl,

Unchanged, not a bit:

The eyes register the first impression,

And it was good.

My eyes: setting on the most beautiful girl around.

My eyes, refusing to sleep a wink tonight.

Tidbits and Notes. Part 282

in “israel” will be held on day (transfer of Palestinians in 1948, about 700,000 refugees) over the ruins of a village razed by Zionist criminal and apartheid “Israel” in 1948.

Pourquoi écrire si on se croit supérieur aux romans qu’on écrit?

Someone told me: “I feel they are acting out of jealousy. They breezed through their diploma, while you worked hard to earn your degrees. Even at 40, you decided to go for a PhD in the hardest of engineering disciplines. You worked 4 jobs to pay for tuition with no family support during the grueling years…” I can live without jealousy. If I could secure a semblance of basic respect, it would do for me.

After a spate of high-profile cases of sexual misconduct and hazing deaths, some say the “Fraternity” organizations No longer have a place in college life, as they were encouraged to view “masculinity”

The late astronaut John Young believed “dust is the number one concern for returning to the moon.” That’s because lunar dust particles are ultra-fine and have no wind or water to smooth them out, meaning they’re also sharp, jagged, and sticky

In 1808, the US outlawed the importation of slaves, but the practice continued for years. Indeed it wasn’t until 1860 that the last known ship carrying enslaved Africans to the US set sail. I guess because of the civil war that blocked all ships. The same is true for “liberating” negro slaves that endured for another century, and robbing them of their human rights as citizens.

Ben Steverman profiles the influential economist (paywall), who estimates that the top 1% of taxpayers control 39% of US wealth.

Millions of Europeans will vote this weekend on the kind of future they envision for the EU, in the largest transnational democratic contest in the world. The major test is the rate of voting , for a parliament that Europeans view as an abstract concept, run by bureaucrats that is intent on running their lives. If the rate is over 40% that would be a vote of confidence in the EU

Iran with Iraqi Jaish Sha3bi defeated Da3esh in Iraq. Iran with Syria army defeated ISIS in Syria. Iran with Lebanon Hezbollah defeated Israe. Iran with Yemenis defeated Saudi Kingdom and tits hired mercenaries. Who USA has to defeat Iran?

Good turnout for EU parliament 50.5%. An expression of greater political debate and a better trend to remain in EU.

Next EU parliament must restrict the invasive agro-multinationals to improve local peasants prices and allow greater local jobs.

EU allocations need to target districts instead of entire country: this policy will encourage higher participation in the EU discussions for targeted funding

The great joker: Trump would like to defend Iran, as it defends Saudi Kingdom, if it desist from contemplating developing the Bomb. In return, Trump also want $billions from Iran.

During the Flu calamity in the USA after WWI, Dan Tonkel recalled, “We were actually almost afraid to breathe...You were afraid even to go out…The fear was so great people were actually afraid to leave their homes…afraid to talk to one another.”

Israeli company Archimedes Group spent more than $800,000 running Facebook ads and their accounts had almost 3 million followers, Facebook announced the removals Thursday. It disseminated faked accounts targeting Africa elections.

Archimedes Group used fake accounts and “represented themselves as locals, including local news organizations, and published allegedly leaked information about politicians,” Facebook said.
The company primarily targeted Nigeria, Senegal, Togo, Angola, Niger and Tunisia but also had some activity targeting Latin America and Southeast Asia, according to Facebook.
“The tactics employed by Israel Archimedes Group, a “private” company, closely resemble the types of information warfare tactics often used by governments, and the Kremlin in particular,” the lab said in a report.

Another revolt or another revolution in Iran?

Prof. et Directrice du Centre d’Études de la Coopération internationale et du Développement – CECID (Université libre de Bruxelles – Belgique)


Le 28 décembre 2017, dans la ville sainte de Machhad, située dans le nord-est de l’Iran, une manifestation soudaine a rassemblé plusieurs milliers de personnes qui ont exprimé leur mécontentement face à la situation économique et sociale dont pâtit la majorité de la population iranienne, de plus en plus en proie à la paupérisation.

En quelques jours, le mouvement contestataire s’est généralisé à toutes les grandes villes du pays, extrêmement critique à l’égard du président Hassan Rohani et du Guide suprême de la révolution islamique, Ali Khamenei.

Nombre d’observateurs se sont interrogés sur la nature de ce mouvement : expression spontanée d’un ras-le-bol, révolte populaire sans objectif politique défini, ou bien résurgence de la « révolution verte » qui avait ébranlé le pouvoir en 2009, après la réélection du président Mahmoud Ahmadinejad ?

Alors qu’après des dizaines de jours de manifestations et de répression, le régime iranien déclare contrôler la situation et que le mouvement de contestation semble momentanément s’essouffler, il est opportun de rappeler le fonctionnement d’un régime, difficilement réformable (mais constamment en discussion?), pour comprendre le blocage de la situation, avant de la commenter…

La routine du régime

Après avoir pris le pouvoir lors de la révolution islamique de 1979, l’ayatollah Khomeiny faisait entériner par referendum le velayat-é-faqih (gouvernement du jurisconsulte). Il prenait aussi le contrôle de toutes les institutions existantes tout en créant de nouvelles qui appuyaient sa politique.

De ce système et de son fonctionnement découlent la stabilité relative du régime, mais également ses failles.

Stabilité, dans la mesure où il contrôle les appareils économiques et répressifs ; et failles qui découlent de son incapacité à se réformer et à combler le fossé qui le sépare des aspirations de la population.

La République islamique repose sur un système politique comprenant des institutions élues et non élues, des institutions formelles prévues dans la constitution et des institutions informelles, toutes liées à des élites cléricales (associations et fondations religieuses, organisations paramilitaires).

Le Guide suprêmeaujourd’hui Khamenei, détermine la direction politique générale du pays et veille à sa bonne exécution. Il arbitre tous les conflits entre les pouvoirs, dont il désigne par ailleurs la composition. Ainsi, il intervient dans le pouvoir législatif et exécutif par l’intermédiaire du Conseil des Gardiens de la Constitution .

Ce Conseil valide les candidatures aux élections présidentielle et législative ; le Guide désigne lui-même la moitié des membres de ce conseil.

Il domine le pouvoir judiciaire en nommant le président du Conseil supérieur de la Justice. Il est le chef des forces armées et des milices paramilitaires.

Le Guide contrôle la politique étrangère en présidant le Conseil suprême de la Sécurité nationale, chargé de définir la politique étrangère et celle de la défense.

Ainsi, le Guide et plus largement la coalition islamiste ont la mainmise sur tous les niveaux de décision, dans la mesure où les institutions de type occidental (présidence, parlement, armée, ministère de l’économie…) sont contrebalancées par des institutions islamistes (Guide suprême, Conseils des Gardiens de la Constitution, Corps des Gardiens de la Révolution, fondations religieuses diverses, etc.).

L’élite cléricale contrôle aujourd’hui les leviers du pouvoir politique, du pouvoir judiciaire, du pouvoir militaire, et aussi les ressources économiques, celles de l’État et une grande partie de celles du pays.

De surcroît, à l’image de la féodalité au Moyen-Âge, les liens matrimoniaux tissés entre les élites renforcent leur pouvoir.

Dans ce cadre, la marge de manœuvre des présidents, même s’ils sont issus du sérail, reste minime.

On peut par ailleurs constater, qu’en réaction aux manifestations qui ont ponctué l’histoire de la République islamique, les présidents ont eu des attitudes timides et se sont rangés finalement du côté du régime. Ce fut le cas de Khatami et c’est le cas de Rohani aujourd’hui.

Les personnalités du régime qui se permettent de contester entrent en disgrâce.

Le premier à en faire les frais fut le premier président de la République islamique, Bani Sadr, déchu de son titre et actuellement exilé en France (I think he was assassinated in France).

Ce fut aussi le cas de Karoubi et Moussavi, devenus des figures emblématiques du Mouvement vert en 2009, mais désormais en résidence surveillée ; ou de l’ancien président « réformateur » Khatami, privé de passeport.

Hasan Rohani essaie aujourd’hui de ménager la chèvre et le chou, mais il est clair qu’il a choisi de privilégier son avenir politique.

Face à la révolte qui s’est exprimée dans la rue, il a donc rejoint une coalition temporaire qui s’est formée entre les différentes factions favorables au régime.

Cette tendance des notables du régime de se soutenir au-delà de leurs rivalités (pourtant parfois aiguës) explique pourquoi la République islamique a survécu dans une relative stabilité jusqu’à aujourd’hui.

Le soutien paramilitaire au régime

Le régime a, à sa disposition, un ensemble de forces de sécurité révolutionnaires qui lui permet d’intervenir en temps voulu pour contrôler la situation intérieure ou de s’engager à l’extérieur du pays.

En particulier, les Comités révolutionnaires, le Corps des Gardiens de la Révolution (sepah-e-pasdaran), dont les unités d’élite des basijis.

L’armée des pasdarans a été créée par décret par Khomeiny et sa fonction est reprise dans la Constitution.

Les pasdarans ont leur propre logistique et leurs propres armes et ont développé leur propre industrie de défense. Ils détiennent un arsenal militaire plus moderne que l’armée régulière.

Les pasdarans sont tout à fait autonomes ; ils ne sont soumis à aucun contrôle gouvernemental. Par ailleurs, ils contrôleraient environ un tiers de l’économie de l’Iran.

Les unités de basijis constituent une organisation paramilitaire puissante formellement sous le contrôle des pasdarans. Son rôle pendant la guerre Iran-Irak (1980-88) a été considérable. Depuis lors, les basijis se présentent comme le deuxième pilier de la puissance de la République islamique après les pasdarans.

Le soutien économique au régime

Parallèlement aux ressources pétrolières contrôlées par l’État, les fondations religieuses (ou bonyads) sont un des leviers forts du régime. Elles sont toutes dirigées par des figures influentes du régime. Elles jouent un rôle important dans l’économie non-pétrolière du pays et sont de plus en plus impliquées dans les activités économiques.

Leur fonctionnement est largement opaque. Il n’existe pas d’obligation faite aux bonyads de publier leurs comptes.

Exemptées de taxes et de contrôle gouvernemental, les bonyads sont directement liées au Guide et ne doivent répondre de leurs actions qu’à lui. Aujourd’hui, il existe une centaine de bonyads nationales, contrôlées par des proches ou des membres du noyau dur du régime, et des bonyads locales dans presque toutes les villes iraniennes, contrôlées par des religieux locaux.

Révolte ou révolution ?

Il est clair que les manifestations dérivent d’un ras-le-bol de la population à propos de la situation économique et sociale, d’une contestation du fonctionnement du régime et d’un désir de changement.

Pourtant, avant tout, elles reflètent les failles du régime.

Parmi elles, son incapacité à répondre aux besoins de la population, alors que dans la région il remporte des victoires incontestées et qu’au niveau international il se construit une relative légitimité.

Parmi les caractéristiques actuelles, il faut aussi noter l’opposition entre l’assainissement économique nécessaire pour relever le pays et la politique populiste qui a répondu pendant longtemps aux demandes des plus fragiles et constitué une base sociale pour le régime.

Les tensions entre un secteur privé étouffé et un secteur public qui contrôle 80% de l’économie sont aussi remarquables. Par ailleurs, le pays demeure l’un des plus corrompu au monde, avec un non-respect des droits de l’Homme des plus dramatiques.

Les caractéristiques politiques, économiques et sociales de la République islamique expliquent la révolte de la population.

Face à une pauvreté inégalée (18% de la population vit en-dessous du seuil de pauvreté) et une situation qui se dégrade pour la classe moyenne et les jeunes qui représentent 50% de la population et n’ont aucune perspective d’avenir, c’est surtout le sentiment d’injustice qui anime les Iraniens qui constatent les inégalités qui explosent.

Les coupes dans les subventions aux plus pauvres -quoique pouvant être considérées comme nécessaires à l’assainissement économique- ont laissé la majorité de ces derniers dans une situation de dénuement total.

L’augmentation des prix des produits de base, en particulier l’essence ou les aliments de première nécessité, touche de plein fouet la population. La « révolte des œufs », comme ont été qualifiées les manifestations actuelles, reflète cette évolution.

L’incompréhension de la population est, aujourd’hui, à son comble.

Comment expliquer que le pays dépense des sommes colossales pour ses interventions extérieures, alors que les victimes des tremblements de terre récents sont délaissées ? (Dans quel sense? La reaction de sauvetage a ete’  prompt)

Comment comprendre que les fondations et les notables ne paient pas de taxe, alors que les prix des produits de première nécessité ont flambé ? (Are churches in the USA taxed? They are in fact subsidized by the State governments and the Federal government in their budgets)

Comment comprendre que le taux de chômage soit si élevé, alors qu’une infime partie de la population (les proches du régime et leurs enfants) déploie un train de vie révoltant et s’octroie les meilleurs postes et toutes les transactions et les contrats signés ?

À n’en pas douter, les espoirs déçus des retombées de la signature des accords sur le nucléaire de juillet 2015 et les promesses non tenues alimentent aussi le désespoir de tous ceux qui sont descendus encore une fois dans les rues du pays et dont beaucoup avaient voté pour Rohani, en soutien aux promesses de changements. (Les sanctions des pays coloniaux sont toujours en place)

*        *        *

Plus que la pauvreté encore, comme ailleurs dans le monde, ce sont les inégalités et les injustices qui nourrissent les révoltes.

L’histoire enseigne que les révolutions font souvent suite à une période de montée des aspirations due à une amélioration brève de la situation économique suivie d’une détérioration spectaculaire. La population iranienne se trouve dans cette configuration.

(L’amelioration economique etait vraie et les pays coloniaux ont de leur mieux pour limiter la liquidite’ monetaire qui est le sang du marche’ interieur. Le movement recent decoule du manque de cette liquidite’ dans les banks de Mashhad et d’autres cites)

Néanmoins, de la révolte à la révolution il y a un chemin qui peut être long si l’on considère la puissance de répression du régime et le manque de leadership à la tête des contestations actuelles. Toutefois, même si le régime semble finalement avoir repris le contrôle de la rue, les manifestions récentes (qui font par ailleurs suite à des contestations régulières, mais de moindre envergures) laisseront des traces.

Le régime ne pourra pas indéfiniment se réfugier derrière des justifications englobant surtout la situation extérieure (guerre Iran-Irak, question nucléaire, complots des voisins ou du grand Satan américain, etc.) pour maintenir l’union nationale, excuser ses échecs intérieurs et fermer les yeux sur ses failles.

Le régime est tenu de répondre aux demandes de sa population, sous peine de voir se renouveler les révoltes, s’amplifier la remise en cause du système, de voir s’affaiblir sa capacité de mobiliser ses partisans, et enfin de ne plus pouvoir se reposer sur son arsenal de répression.

Note: L’Iran ne voit aucun deboucher pour la liquidite’ monetaire que de negocier avec la Chine pour une monaie autre que le dollar.

Sat Aug 5, 2017 10:14AM
Arrivée du premier train redonnant vie à la célèbre « route de la soie », le 15 février 2016. ©AFP
Arrivée du premier train redonnant vie à la célèbre « route de la soie », le 15 février 2016. ©AFP

Est-ce la renaissance “eurasiatique” ce dont ont peur le plus les États-Unis à chaque fois qu’ils évoquent l’avenir des relations entre l’Iran d’une part et la Russie et la Chine de l’autre?

Or en dépit de tous les obstacles dressés par Washington, la route de la soie finira par renaître.

Le projet de la ligne de chemin de fer reliant Khaf, en Iran, à Herat, en Afghanistan, sera lancé d’ici une semaine, selon Abbas Nazari, directeur des affaires internationales de l’Organisation des Chemins de fer.

Interviewée par Sputnik, cette autorité iranienne détaille ce projet :  « À la faveur de cette liaison ferroviaire, l’Afghanistan aura accès, via l’Iran, à onze corridors de transport internationaux, y compris à une sortie sur la mer. »

Cet énorme projet permettra aussi à l’Afghanistan, à l’Inde et au Pakistan d’avoir un accès direct aux marchés d’Asie Centrale, d’Europe et de Russie, en évitant les ports et le canal de Suez qui est surchargé, ce qui n’ira pas sans déplaire à l’Égypte et à ses alliés israéliens et américains.

Selon le responsable iranien, l’Iran et les pays impliqués dans ce méga projet comptent sur cette ligne de chemin de faire pour intensifier les échanges non seulement entre l’Iran et l’Afghanistan, mais aussi entre l’Iran et l’Europe car cette liaison ouvrirait aussi et surtout un corridor de transport qui relierait la Chine à l’Europe.

De l’Ouzbékistan jusqu’à Mazar-i-Sharif, en Afghanistan, 27 km de voie ferrée ont été posés par lesquels transiteront quelques cinq millions de tonnes de marchandises chaque année.

En effet, l’Iran rallie sa voix à l’Organisation de coopération économique (ECO) dont les dirigeants ont convenu de la nécessité de construire une voie ferrée qui relierait la Chine au Kirghizstan, au Tadjikistan, à l’Afghanistan, à l’Iran et à l’Europe.

Et la sécurité? 

Abordant le problème de la sécurité sur ce tronçon de la voie ferrée, M. Nazari a estimé qu’il s’agissait plutôt d’un problème politique et que les entreprises iraniennes engagées dans ce projet n’avaient connu jusqu’ici aucun problème de sécurité.

La Chine est le principal partenaire commercial de l’Iran. Et les deux pays veulent porter leurs échanges à 600 milliards de dollars d’ici dix ans, contre environ 50 milliards actuellement.

Les sanctions US contre Téhéran revigorent d’ailleurs cette dynamique. La route de la soie a permis de transporter pendant des siècles les marchandises, dont le précieux tissu, entre l’Asie à l’Europe.

A 25-point ceasefire/agreement deal in Syria?

Brokered by Turkey, Iran, UN…

Important: The anti-Assad rebel coalition of Jaish al-Fateh has reached an agreement with Iran for de-escalation, followed by a six-month agreement.

Al-Qaeda-affiliated Jabhat al-Nusra is involved in the agreement, not only Ahrar al-Sham this time.

The 25-point ceasefire/agreement is to be overseen by the UN.

The ceasefire will take place in the southern towns of Zabadani; Madhaya; Baqeen; Sarghaya and nearby regime bases.

In the north, the ceasefire will apply to Foua; Kafraya; Binnish; Taftanaz; Taoum; Maarat Misrin; the city of Idlib; Ram Hamdan; Zardana; Shelikh.

The strict destination of those leaving Zabadani (fighters, families and wounded individuals) must be to Idlib.

The agreement states that the ”government of Iran” will work with the Lebanese government to bring back families that fled “illegally” to Lebanon, but they must be no more than 50 families.

Women and children under 18 or men above 50 can leave Foua and Kafraya but they should not be more than 10,000.

Regime will release 500 prisoners

More remarkably, the agreement stipulates that the regime will not fly helicopters or planes in those areas including to drop aid. A no-fly zone of sorts.

Agreement also includes:

  1. no arms depots on frontlines;
  2. no humanitarian blockade on Foua and Kafraya or blockade on Madhaya, Baqeen, Serghaya.
  3. No additional military defensive lines
  4. No military jets and helicopters flying over these cities

End of Israel Lobby?

Iran deal passed, but Reports of death of Israel Lobby is greatly exaggerated

The pro-Israel lobby was never the shadowy, government-controlling entity portrayed by its most paranoid critics. It was, however, an important influence on American politics.

Zionism is to Jews what the civil-rights movement is to African-Americans, a political program organized to protect basic survivalist concerns.

Jews participate disproportionately in political life in every way: voting, intellectual debate, donating, and organizing. The pro-Israel lobby organized an important constituency in American politics that shared a relatively unified understanding of its collective self-interest.

A month ago, that lobby was gearing up for a massive national campaign to block the Iran nuclear deal, using every medium at its disposal: television ads, face-to-face lobbying, impassioned pleas from the bimah and in the Jewish press.

The campaign has not only failed, it has appeared almost completely ineffectual, and its failure has left its members stupefied. The deal’s anticlimactic success shows that the world has moved beyond them, and they fail to understand how or why this happened.

The miscalculations by opponents of the Iran deal began with a poor grasp of public opinion.

They imagined they could foment a broad public backlash, and opponents frequently, and triumphantly, cited opinion polls showing more respondents disapproved than approved of the Iran deal. But the results of these polls varied widely.

Small changes in wording produced wildly varying results, reflecting the fact that few people knew or cared much about the issue.

Turning a foreign-policy issue with no immediate salience to American security — even a nuclear-armed Iran, a worst-case scenario, would not involve an attack on Americans at home or abroad — into an issue Americans would actively care about was never realistic.

A Republican leadership aide, speaking to the Los Angeles Times, blamed Donald Trump’s candidacy for distracting the public. (“The GOP leadership aide, granted anonymity to discuss the setback, said billionaire Donald Trump’s attention-grabbing presidential campaign, along with scrutiny of Hillary Rodham Clinton’s email server, overshadowed all other issues this summer, making it harder for the Republicans’ message to attract attention.”)

Their plan could have worked! If only the atmosphere had been, as they apparently assumed it would be, completely devoid of a presidential campaign or other news. (Was the deal signing postponed to fit into this campaign period?)

The deal’s opponents not only misjudged public opinion as a whole, but more astonishingly, they misjudged the state of American Jewish opinion in particular.

Congress might have been moved to oppose the Iran deal if the American Jewish community had viewed it as an existential threat to Israel. But Jews did not, on the whole, take that view.

A detailed survey of American Jewish opinion by The Jewish Journal found that American Jews support the deal, 53 percent to 35 percent. How could that be? Well, this chart shows how Jewish opinion breaks down:

Photo: Jewish Journal

Liberals like the deal, and conservatives don’t, by roughly equal margins. But most Jews are liberals. Rising polarization of American life has cleaved in two everything in its path. There is no more “Israel lobby”; there is a red Israel lobby and a blue one.

The implications of this cleavage made blocking the Iran deal hopeless from the outset.

As a simple matter of political mechanics, acquiring a veto-proof majority in both houses of Congress meant hawks needed liberal Democrats to take their side. But they did not have arguments that could appeal to liberals — even liberals with a deep emotional connection to Israel.

Non-proliferation experts strongly supported the agreement as the best way out of a difficult circumstance.

Even Israel’s security establishment disagreed with Benjamin Netanyahu and the pro-Israel right. The technical case for the strength of the inspections and the enforcement mechanism was strong; the case against leaned heavily on apocalypticism.

And this underscores the most important tectonic forces moving beneath the Israel lobby’s feet.

Over the last 15 years, the foreign-policy debate in Israel has moved steadily rightward. (In the last election, left-of-center Israeli parties relied on domestic issues, rather than appealing for territorial compromise.)

The Israeli right favors either permanent occupation of the West Bank, or an occupation that lasts until such time as the Palestinians produce a pro-Zionist government, which is functionally the same thing.

That perspective has become increasingly coterminous with the American “pro-Israel” view.

At last year’s AIPAC conference, some 65 percent of the attendees were Republican. That skewed perspective has pushed the American Jewish establishment to the right of American Jewry as a whole.

Jewish Republicans have always believed that forcing Jews to pick sides between a conservative Israeli government and a liberal American one would leave them with the larger share.

Elliott Abrams, a former Bush administration Middle East adviser, today defends the Israel lobby’s choice to launch an existential fight it could not win.

“If AIPAC would not fight on this issue,” he concludes, “many of its supporters would wonder why it even exists.”

Launching unwinnable fights — and then retroactively justifying the decision in spite of failure — is, of course, an ingrained neoconservative tactic. This is a movement that has no language to express the concept of a counterproductive fight on behalf of a worthy cause.

But there is more at work than simple pigheadedness or habitual aggression. Many conservative supporters of Israel do not necessarily regard the crack-up of American Jewish opinion as a problem.

In their view, diplomacy with Iran is the prelude to Israel’s annihilation, and support for Netanyahu’s permanent occupation is the sine qua non of genuine support for Israel.

It follows that the Iran debate essentially succeeded, by smoking out the fake Israel supporters. An almost giddy Jennifer Rubin concludes that the deal’s victory destroys “the myth of bipartisan support for Israel.”

The crack-up of the Israel lobby is, for its most conservative members, not a failure at all but the fulfillment of a longtime dream.

(I failed to comprehend the conclusion. What is the long-time dream of the conservative members?)

Josh Ruebner shared and commented

I sure hope that Jonathan Chait is right that the Israel’s lobby’s loss on the Iran deal signifies its demise. However, I’m also reminded of Mark Twain’s quip: “The reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.”

There is no more “Israel lobby”; there is a red Israel lobby and a blue one.|By Jonathan Chait

Facts demonstrating that Iran is the least of the Arab States problems

Chapters of the plots from Saudi monarchy and Israel:

1- Saudi  frequent wars on Gamal Abdel Nasser
2-Betrayal of Egypt  Al Sadat At Camp David
3-Betrayal of King Hussein in Wadi Araba
4-War of Saddam Hussein on the Islamic Republic, with the support  of the Gulf Emirates and Saudi Arabia

5-the invasion of Saddam Hussein to Kuwait
6-the tyranny of the organization this year and the community on their own people
7-Conspiracy of Sharm El Sheikh on Hizbullah in 1996
8-the establishment of  Qaeda to oppose the Soviet then turning against America and its allies9  Suicide attacks on the Shia in Iraq
10-The  American Occupation of Iraq

11- Military Conflicts between Palestinian Fatah and Hamas
12-the Israeli war on Lebanon 2006 with the support  of Arab States

13-the Israeli war on Gaza 2008-2012-2015 with the support of Arab States

14- Tight Relations  Between Turkey and Israel
15- Arab States Letter Thanking Perez
16-the effects of the Juan of judgement in Egypt and exclusion of their partners with mom arkaway
17- Military coup  of Egypt Sisi on the Moslem Brotherhoods  with the help of Saudi Arabia
18-The Civil War  in Libya by proxy Saudi, turkey
19-support the Gulf and Turkey for ISIL.
20-Egypt blockade of Gaza
21- Israel preemptive war on Lebanon in 2006 with Saudi financial support
22-Conflict Qatar-Saudi Arabia
23-Criminal Acts Against the Bahraini with Saudi full support

24- Preemptive war of Saudi in Yemen

Asad Ghsoub  shared this link

فصول المؤامرة الصفوية – الرافضية – الصهيونية – الأميركية على أهل السنة والجماعة:
1- حرب آل سعود على جمال عبد الناصر
2- خيانة السادات في كامب ديفيد
3- خيانة الملك حسين في وادي عربة
4- حرب صدام حسين على الجمهورية الإسلامية، بدعم أميركي خليجي
5- إجتياح صدام حسين للكويت
6- إستبداد أنظمة أهل السنة والجماعة بشعوبها
7- مؤامرة شرم الشيخ على حزب الله ب 1996
8- إنشاء القاعدة لمواجهة السوفيات ثم إنقلابهم على أميركا والخليج
9- الهجمات الإنتحارية على الشيعة والمقامات في العراق
10- إحتلال أميركا العراق إنطلاقاً من القواعد الخليجية
11- الإشتباك الأهلي بين فتح وحماس
12- الحرب الإسرائيلية على لبنان 2006 بدعم أميركي – عربي
13- الحرب الإسرائيلية على غزة 2008 – 2012 – 2015 بدعم أميركي – عربي
14-العلاقات الإستراتيجية بين تركيا وإسرائيل
15- رسالة مرسي الى بيريز
16- إستئثار الإخوان بالحكم في مصر وإقصاء شركائهم بغطاء أميركي
17- إنقلاب السيسي على الإخوان بمساعدة سعودية
18- الحرب الأهلية الليبية بالوكالة عن السعودية وتركيا
19- دعم الخليج وتركيا لداعش تحت نظر الأميركيين
20- حصار مصر لقطاع غزة
21- تغطية حلفاء السعودية في لبنان للحرب الإسرائيلية 2006
22- النزاع القطري – السعودي
23- التنكيل النظام البحريني – السعودي بالشعب في البحرين
24- العدوان السعودي على اليمن
25- تنكيل النظام المصري بالإخوان المسلمين

في الواقع إن إيران هي آخر مشاكل العرب، وهي ليست إلا العدو الوهمي المضخم لتغطية النخب العربية والإسلامية الفاسدة على سوئها وفشلها وتبعيتها



What is the commonly accepted definition of “breakout time”?

Finally, the 6 + 1 powers that own nuclear arsenals reached an agreement with Iran. For the next 10 years, Iran will be unable to produce a nuclear bomb, even if the regime changes.

If Iran didn’t abide by the fatwa of its imam Khamenei to ban the production of nuclear bombs, Iran could have had one long time ago.

This is the time required to produce enough weapons-grade uranium (WGU) for one nuclear weapon.

To produce WGU, uranium needs to be enriched (e.g., with centrifuges) to more than 90% of its fissile isotope U-235.

The amount of WGU required for one weapon is defined by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) as about 27 kg of uranium. This amount is often called a “significant quantity” (SQ).

What is Iran’s current breakout time?

Natural uranium has only 0.7 percent of the isotope U-235, and the effort required to enrich it to one SQ of WGU is about 5,000 Separative Work Units (SWUs).

Iran currently has about 9,000 functioning first-generation IR-1 centrifuges, with another 9,000 not in operation. The IR-1s installed in the Natanz and Fordow facilities have been performing at an average per unit rate of 0.75 to 1 SWU per year.

Using the 1 SWU/year performance of the latest IR-1 model, the breakout time with 9,000 machines using a natural uranium feed would be six to seven months.

However, Iran also has substantial stocks of 3.5% enriched uranium hexafluoride (UF6) that can be used as an alternative feed, shrinking the breakout time to three months.

If Iran brought online its other nearly 9,000 IR-1s, breakout time would be about three months with natural uranium feedstock and four to six weeks with 3.5 percent UF6 feedstock.

Iran has also developed the more advanced IR-2m centrifuge, rated at 5 SWU/year. If the 1,000 IR-2ms installed at Natanz were used in conjunction with all 18,000 IR-1s, the respective breakout times would be cut by a third.

According to media accounts, the proposed nuclear agreement would lower the number of operating centrifuges to around 6,500. In that circumstance, what would Iran’s breakout time be?

Using IR-1s with natural uranium as a feed, the breakout time for 6,500 centrifuges would be about nine months.

A crucial question will be how much 3.5 percent enriched UF6 will remain in Iran. Yet even if UF6 stocks are reduced from their current 7.5-8 tons to 500 kg, a breakout time of between seven and eight months would still be possible given the program’s enrichment capabilities with natural uranium feed.

Since these breakout times are less than the goals set by the U.S. administration, it is important to know what parameters Washington used for its estimates.

The administration says that one of the main achievements of an agreement would be to increase breakout time to at least a year. What else would have to be in the agreement to reach that goal?

The maximum allowed breakout time should be viewed as a combination of detection time and action time — that is, the time required to get Iran back in compliance with the agreement.

Both of these times are difficult to estimate precisely because administrative delays and efforts to resolve disagreements could easily take several months.

How long is the detection time?

Detection time depends on Iran’s actions.

If Tehran does not try to conceal what it is doing, the IAEA would detect a violation fairly quickly — in the worst case perhaps two weeks. The agency would then confirm the finding with Iranian authorities, and the IAEA Board of Governors would need another one or two weeks to take any formal action such as referring the issue to the UN Security Council. This would leave a reasonable amount of time for the international community to act.

Yet if Iran tries to conceal what it is doing, much longer detection times are likely.

As indicated in past IAEA reports, environmental samples play a pivotal role in confirming violations. Due to the large number of samples involved and the meticulous analytical process, the results would not be available for at least two months. And if samples show higher enrichment, additional samples have to be taken and analyzed.

Although the second set of samples would certainly be fast-tracked, it is unrealistic to expect that process and subsequent clarifications by Iran to take less than another month. This would leave the international community with only three or four months to act, an extremely short time.

There are also plausible scenarios of misunderstandings or even differing interpretations of what constitutes a breach of the agreement. In such situations, Iran could drag the process out for many months.

Iran might also pursue a “creep-out” strategy, such as by slowly increasing its inventory of 3.5 percent UF6. This has already taken place under the interim Joint Plan of Action.

When the JPOA was concluded in November 2013, Iran’s 3.5 percent UF6 stock should have been below 7.5 tons; any additional material existing or newly produced should have been converted to oxides. Yet none of the IAEA reports released since then indicate that the stock has been below that amount.

This demonstrates the need for the United States and its partners to maintain vigilance in getting Iran to comply with an agreement and not allowing it to widen the envelope of what is permitted.

The most difficult task is to detect a “sneak-out” violation in which Iran uses clandestine nuclear facilities. This scenario has several variants, including the possibility of an entirely separate, unreported enrichment cycle anywhere along the chain from uranium mining to enrichment. This scenario cannot be excluded because the IAEA has still not been permitted to verify the completeness of Tehran’s declarations on nuclear materials and facilities.

A sneak-out could also involve both declared and undeclared facilities. For instance, Iran could produce low-enriched UF6 in a known facility and then take that material to a smaller undeclared location to produce WGU. Therefore, it is important that the IAEA be empowered to not only verify the completeness of Iran’s inventory of nuclear material, but also establish as a baseline the total number and location of centrifuges inside the country.

If an agreement does achieve a one-year breakout warning time, is it possible to know whether this buffer could be maintained over the life of the deal?

What would change that?

Perhaps the most important factor is the research and development on more advanced centrifuges such as IR-5 or IR-8. Making such machines operational on a semi-industrial scale would likely take at least three years. If they are ten to twenty times more efficient than the current IR-1 centrifuges as estimated, the breakout times would be much reduced.

Warning time could also be shortened if the IAEA is not allowed to fully exercise rigorous monitoring and verification procedures. These range from routine inspections to so-called “anytime, anyplace inspections” and full access to component manufacturing facilities, as well as efforts to follow the procurement of certain dual-use materials and equipment to confirm their end use.

Can centrifuges be used to enrich material other than uranium?

Media reports indicate that some of the centrifuges in Fordow will be dedicated to producing isotopes for medical and industrial use. A similar process is already in use at enrichment facilities in Europe and Russia. A key question will be which kind of stable isotopes will be produced.

If the centrifuges are reconfigured to produce, say, xenon isotopes, the machines could be converted back to enrich uranium fairly easily. Yet if they are used to produce zinc or molybdenum isotopes, contamination could hamper any later attempts to resume production of nuclear-grade materials.

What is the international community’s past experience with predictions of breakout time?

History shows surprises. The Russian centrifuge program went for years without detection despite tremendous intelligence efforts.

The Iraqi and Libyan programs were not immediately detected, and South Africa, which manufactured nuclear weapons, ended up destroying its program before the IAEA saw it.

The Syrian reactor in al-Kibar also came a bit out of the blue, as did North Korea’s advanced centrifuge plant.

There is always the element of the unknown or the uncertain that adds to the risk equation.

Iran has talented engineers and the necessary financial resources, and its nuclear infrastructure is much larger than what it actually needs. Therefore, a monitoring scheme that is merely “good enough” will not guarantee success in preventing Iran from breaking out and achieving a nuclear weapons capability.

Olli Heinonen is a senior fellow at Harvard University’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs and a former deputy director-general for safeguards at the IAEA.

Together with Washington Institute fellow Simon Henderson, he coauthored the recently updated Policy Focus Nuclear Iran: A Glossary of Terms, a joint publication of the Institute and the Belfer Center.

Asad Ghsoub shared this link on FB this March 29, 2015

Breakout time can be as short as 3-4 weeks

With reports that Washington and its partners may reach a nuclear accord with Iran in the coming days, a former senior IAEA safeguards official answers the most pressing questions about Tehran’s program…




June 2023

Blog Stats

  • 1,522,107 hits

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by

Join 769 other subscribers
%d bloggers like this: