June 03, 2006

The coming takeover of Europe

http://www.americanthinker.com/

The Coming Muslim Takeover of Europe
June 3rd, 2006



[Book review of While Europe Slept: How Radical Islam is Destroying the West
From Within by Bruce Bawer; published February of 2006; 237 pages; $23.95]

This stunner of a book about Continental Islam has two main themes. The
first is that Europe has a horrific Muslim immigration and reproduction
problem. European Muslims are expanding their numbers almost exponentially,
and they are not being assimilated or integrated into European culture. This
radically new and explosive demographic, according to the author, is not
being converted to Western liberalism or adopting Western life-styles.

While Europe Slept argues that while Europe is currently only about ten
percent Islamic-vs. two percent for America-if present trends continue it
will only take a generation or two for Muslims to become the majority. The
once-noble Continent will become what intellectual fellow-traveler Bat Ye'or
in 2005 called "Eurabia." The shocking claim by Bruce Bawer is that well
before 2050, most of Europe is likely to become an outpost of Islamdom
governed by Sharia. Europe will be alien to Western culture and an enemy of
Western Civilization.

The second theme of this almost shattering book is that Europe today is a
hellhole of leftist multiculturalism, far worse than anything in America,
and even far worse than almost anyone in America suspects. American
expatriate Bawer-who has lived the past ten years in various European
countries, mostly Holland and Norway-is almost uniformly horrified by every
country he resides in or visits. According to him, political correctness and
multiculturalism are "a habit of thought that in America is an annoyance but
in Europe is a veritable religion."

Bawer excoriates his European friends for their propensity to display phony
"respect" and "understanding" of the various foreigners in their midst,
especially Muslims. He blasts their cult-like belief in the mantra of
multiculturalism and their unlimited "belief in peace and reconciliation
through dialog," even with Muslims who emphatically reject peace,
reconciliation, and dialog as methodologies or ideals.

While Europe Slept also makes the interesting observation that there is
virtually no American-style "religious right" to oppose growing Muslim
power. Virtually the whole Continent is atheist or de facto atheist. Thus in
Europe the religious right is the Muslims.

This leads to some odd political terminology and alliances. Bruce Bawer
consistently champions what he calls "the liberal resistance," but he doesn'
t seem to know where to find it or even how to describe it. What he does
describe, in sickening detail, is how much the multicultural left utterly
protects the Islamic religious right. These two have formed an evil alliance
which seems all but unstoppable in the heart of Western Civilization.

Bawer himself is a little confused about what he is. He edited a book
slamming America's multicultural left called Beyond Queer: Challenging Gay
Left Orthodoxy (1996). But he's also written a book called Stealing Jesus:
How Fundamentalism Betrays Christianity (1998), which trashes the religious
right. In the end, Bawer calls himself a part-time "libertarian" and is
essentially a strong Western or classical liberal.

This book is an easy and fun read. But it's also horrifying. And despite the
speed with which its mere three chapters can be consumed, it has plenty of
documentation for its claims from almost every nation in Europe. Bawer, who
is also a translator, speaks Dutch and Norwegian fluently, and is conversant
in several other European languages as well. This insider-perspective helps
provide quotes, incidents, and stories from all over the Continent-many
based on personal experience.

In the end, this book essentially writes off Europe(!). It argues that
America is the last hope for Western Civilization and the world. Although'
While Europe Slept tries to be positive at times-and does offer suggestions
to ameliorate the coming demographic nightmare-ultimately Bawer concludes

"Europe is steadily committing suicide, and perhaps all we can do is look
on in horror."

Perhaps the most terrifying part of the book is the way Muslims everywhere
are already confidently planning to rule Europe and make it part of the
caliphate. A popular Swedish t-shirt reads simply "2030-then we take over."
With France still only 12% Muslim, the leading Parisian newspaper Le Monde
seems to have already surrendered. In 2004 it praised France for "the fact
of its having and accepting the role of the first Muslim country of Europe."

How did Europe ever reach such a dead-end? The problem began rather
recently, in the late '60s and '70s, with a temporary labor shortage and
subsequent special "guest worker" programs. But the shortage is long gone
and the Muslims are still there. And as Bawer points out repeatedly, they
aren't being integrated into the various populations as in America. Almost
all Muslims live in suburban ghettos and are somewhat rejected by the native
and slightly nativist whites. The Muslims, in turn, utterly reject their new
country and its Western liberal ideology. The vast majority-even second
generation kids-aren't fluent in the different, local European tongues.

And this growing cancer is wildly exasperated by a phenomenon unknown in
America called "fetching" marriages. Males from Europe use "family
unification" laws to being in illiterate females they've never met from
their former country, and then marry them-usually as uneducated teenagers.
The young girls are then kept at home in a virtual prison where they
reproduce wildly. These new citizens never learn the local languages or
customs but they do qualify for vast welfare benefits and quickly produce
more Islamist-oriented males and slave-like females. Then the process starts
all over again.

The effect of all these Muslims on the life-styles of Europeans is simply
remarkable. Homophobia is way up, as is opposition to abortion and divorce.
"Honor" killings are rampant as is female "circumcision." In many parts of
Europe all women must wear a scarf covering their face lest they be deemed
whores and "for everyone." By right, any Muslim or Muslim gang can rape any
uncovered girl. Afterwards, the girl is properly killed by relatives to end
the "shame" of her family.

The rapists, naturally, go unpunished. And because native Europeans differ
on this practice, Muslims scornfully think of all white men as weak and
effeminate, for not being able to control their women. They think of all
normally-dressed Western women as honorless low-lifes and unloved harlots,
valuable only for group violation and subsequent termination.

Among the nightmare statistics cited by the book are these:

1. 80% of the women in Oslo's shelter system are Muslims fleeing abusive
families, husbands, and boyfriends;

2. Danish Muslims make up 5% of the population but 40% of the welfare
rolls;

3. refugee-friendly Switzerland is already 20% Muslim;

4. the world's most wonderful city (in my view) Amsterdam is now majority
Muslim;

5. 70% of all French prisoners are Muslim;

6. the four London bombers that killed 56 in July of 2005 received almost
a million dollars in welfare benefits.

And the bad news in this book just keeps coming. Bruce Bawer and While
Europe Slept are relentless. This book is praised by Mona Charen, Abe
Foxman, Daniel Pipes, and Victor Davis Hanson, among others. But it doesn't
offer much hope. Because of a kind of maniacal political correctness,
otherwise civilized and enlightened Europeans seem doomed to Muslim
domination in the near future. They are incurably infected with
multiculturalism and a subsequent

"unprincipled spirit of compromise and capitulation that is guiding today'
s Europe, step by step, to the gallows."




Andre Zantonavitch

A tale of two Khans - Feroze and Amir

By Ashok Chowgule



Two of the Khans of the film world made statements that were deemed to
be controversial. One issue died down almost as quickly as it was
raised, the other lingered.



The first statement was made by Feroz Khan in Pakistan. The occasion
was the official release of an Indian film in Pakistan after a long
time. Official because such films are banned by the government, but the
pirated versions were doing good business. As per a report in a
Pakistani publication, the anchor of the show asked a 'sensitive
question' to Manisha Koirala and when she 'squirmed', the anchor
'sarcastically offered to change the subject.' Feroz Khan could not
absorb what was going on, and so he said: "We have a Muslim President
and Sikh Prime Minister in India, but in Pakistan Muslims kill Muslims."
This was supposed to be a controversial statement.



The second statement was made by Amir Khan in India, when he said that
he supported the programme of Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA) which is
agitating that the dams in the Narmada Valley schemes are not completed.
Of course, he said that his objection was not to the dam per se, but
that it should not be at the 'expense' of improper rehabilitation of the
displaced persons. The people of Gujarat were upset at this support,
since for the state the water that will be available will be a big
relief to many parts, particularly the drought areas of Saurashtra.
They have been agitated with the delays caused by the antiques of NBA.
Both the main political parties in the state strongly condemned Amirji
saying essentially that he does not know what he is talking about.



One of the actions taken was to ask the film distributors not to show
Amirji's latest film "Fanaa" in the various cinema houses in Gujarat.
It appears that the distributors, gauging the mood of the people, have
agreed to do so. The Government of Gujarat has not taken any official
position on the issue.



So, what was the reaction of the various people to the two statements.
The Pakistani publication said that Ferozji's son and brother tried to
'calm down' the actor. Perhaps the reaction is best summed up by the
statement made by Mahesh Bhatt, a renowned director of Hindi films, to
the publication. He said: "We are all extremely shocked with this
incident and it was certainly not expected from Feroz Khan. The entire
team of Indians was extremely apologetic to the Pakistanis for Feroz
Khan's remarks and behaviour."



Ferozji has made no personal apology for what he said, and the position
now is that he is banned from entering Pakistan. Not only the film
industry have been conspicuous by their silence in the whole issue, the
secular intellectuals have competed with them to see who maintains a
greater silence.



But in case of Amirji? Silence is the last option that will be used.
Amirji thinks he has made his case stronger by criticising the Gujarat
Government in its handling of the demolition of an old dargah recently
in the city of Vadodara. Along with many temples, and a couple of small
mosques, the objective of the demolition was to widen the roads in the
city. These temples and mosques created no resistance, but the dargah
did. In the rioting that followed, two Muslims were killed in police
firing. However, two Hindus were killed by Muslims as part of their
protest - a fact that will be as deligently buried as the statement by
Ferozji. One Muslim was also killed by the Hindus as a reaction - a
fact that will be used to potray that innocent Muslims are in grave
danger in Gujarat.



So, for many in the media and Bollywood, since Amirji has projected
himself as against the present Gujarat government, he has suddenly
become a hero. And Mahesh Bhatt has filed a Public Interest Litigation
(PIL) in the courts asking that the Government of Gujarat be directed to
ensure that the film is released in the state. Various film
personalities, who were silent in case of Ferozji, have said that they
think that Amirji has said nothing wrong.



But did Amirji say anything wrong? He has based his opinion on what the
NBA has to say on the subject, and it seems that he has not done any
independent investigation of his own. He has chosen to ignore reports
about the rehabilitation of the displaced persons, and, more
importantly, ignored reports about how NBA is forcing many people not to
accept the rehabilitation package. Critical observers (some who are
also political opponents of the present Gujarat Government) have
commented quite favourably about the work done so far.



Here it is pertinent to take into account what Amirji has to say about
what some of the active supporters of NBA have to say on the issue of
the soft drink Coca Cola. It alleges that the bottling plant in Kerala
has caused damage to the availability of drinking water and also made it
harmful for consumption. Since Amirji endorses the product through
advertisements, and since he says that in case of the Narmada dam he is
speaking 'for the rights of the poor farmer', some newspapers asked him
whether this was not double standards. Amirji has said that he is
making his own investigation about the allegation made against Coca
Cola, and that in a month or two he will come out with his own
definitive conclusions. (It is hoped that the media will contact him
after the expiry of the period, so that the people of India get to know
his wise words on the issue.)



So, when it comes to Coca Cola, Amirji will not accept the statements of
the active supporters of NBA. But will do so when it comes to issues
relating to the Narmada dam. Perhaps if he did accept the allegations
against Coca Cola, not only would he (and perhaps many others in the
film industry) have a significant monetary loss, but also he would not
have been the darling of the secular intellectuals as he is presently.



One of the newer channels got him in front of their cameras in their
studio, for what was billed as the first live interview of the actor.
Ferozji received no such courtesy. Long interviews of Amirji have
appeared in various publications, but not of Ferozji. And the thrust of
all these interviews is to project the Government of Gujarat in a bad
light.



Another issue which exposes the political agenda of Amirji is his stand
on the travails of the Kashmiri Pandits who have been ethnically
cleansed from the Kashmir Valley in 1989. In a recent comment that has
come from him, it appears that it is only very recently (that is after
he has expressed his concern about the 'poor farmers' being displaced
from the Narmad Valley) that he is aware of such a thing happening. And
he has said that he will be 'soon' visiting the squalid camps where they
are living all these years. (Mahesh Bhatt had made a similar promise
some four years ago, and he has yet to fulfill it.)



This whole episode has once again exposed the hollowness of the practice
of secularism in India. It is not only Amirji who stands indicted, but
also his so-called supporters in the film industry, as well as those who
go under the rubric of intellectuals. And even as there is a call to
the film distributors in Gujarat to lift their ban, there is a silence
with respect to the ban on the film "Da Vinci Code" in the states of
Meghalaya, Punjab, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh, allegedly because the
sentiments of Christians in India have been hurt. No on asks how is it
that the sentiments of Christians in Christian countries, where the film
is released, have not been hurt.

Major Policy Shift for U.S. over Diplomatic Contact with Iran

SOURCE: Global Insight Perspective
After almost three decades of diplomatic hostilities, the U.S. administration yesterday announced the unthinkable and pledged to participate in direct multi-party talks with Iran, should the latter renounce its uranium enrichment activities; Iran's most immediate response has been to reject the U.S. conditions.



Significance

Despite three years of negotiations over the Iranian nuclear crisis, the world powers have been unable to wean the Islamic Republic off its controversial atomic programme; the U.S. offer of talks is by far the most important development aimed at resolving the long-running crisis.

Implications

However, the U.S. offer is not as dramatic as it first appears. Given Iran's insistence that its nuclear programme is 'irreversible', the likelihood that the U.S. announcement will radically alter the course of current diplomatic efforts to coax Iran away from the most sensitive aspects of its nuclear activities remains minimal.

Outlook

The foreign ministers from the five permanent members of the UN Security Council (UNSC) and Germany will meet later today in Vienna (Austria), in the latest round of international deliberations over Iran's nuclear programme. The diplomats will no doubt welcome the U.S. offer of talks with Iran as a timely boost. However, given that the United States' motives may be more inclined towards getting Iran's allies Russia and China onside for future sanctions, Iran may now feel the pinch of a slow global re-alignment against its controversial atomic designs.

Watershed Moment?

Diplomatic goodwill is not usually an expression associated with Iran and the United States. For almost 30 years, the two countries have been at loggerheads over a whole plethora of political, security and - no less - 'world domination' issues. Indeed, the extent to which the two states have fallen out since the Iranian revolution of 1979 can be gauged by their respective terms of reference for each other. Iran, as U.S. President George W Bush was want to remind the world, was part of the 'axis of evil', while the United States was certainly no saint, according to the Iranian religious establishment; in fact, the Americans were more endearingly labelled the 'Great Satan'. However, what remains intriguing is the extent to which Iranian-U.S. hostilities have mellowed since the debacle that is now Iraq. Although by no measure a cosy relationship, geo-strategic realities are beginning to bite, bringing the two states back from the diplomatic brink in the process.

The most promising sign of such a rapprochement came yesterday, on the eve of the latest round of global talks on Iran's nuclear programme. As the five permanent members of the UN Security Council (UNSC), plus Germany, prepared to iron out their differences in the Austrian capital Vienna over how best to curb Iran's atomic ambitions, the U.S. administration broke some rather surprising news. Before leaving for Vienna, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice announced that 'To underscore our commitment to a diplomatic solution and to enhance the prospects for success, as soon as Iran fully and verifiably suspends its enrichment and reprocessing activities, the [United States] will come to the table with our EU [European Union] colleagues and meet with Iran's representatives'. Having taken a stridently backseat position up to this point, the U.S. administration would now pull out all the stops and seek to resolve the nuclear impasse. 'My decision today says the United States is going to take a leadership position in solving this issue', Bush told reporters. Unsurprisingly, the European powers, together with Chinese and Russian officials, welcomed the U.S. offer - no doubt in the hope that it would provide greater vigour to a hitherto disunited international response to Iran's continuing nuclear intransigence. The foreign ministers at today's gathering will at least feel they have some positive developments to fall back on, while considering a new package of incentives with which to entice Iran away from its enrichment activities. Given the laborious task of negotiating with Iran in the absence of any unity, the U.S. move will come as a relief to many of today's participants.

What remains difficult to calculate at this early stage is the Iranian response to the U.S. overtures. However, it is clear that the country's establishment will continue to play hard ball and seek to extract further concessions. President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad will claim some credit for the American about-turn, considering that the U.S. announcement came just a few weeks after Ahmedinejad posted Bush a lengthy letter lamenting the ills of the world; the president is bound to claim that his powers of philosophical persuasion forced the U.S. re-think. On the critical nuclear question, Iran will be in little haste to concede to the U.S. demands. The suspension of enrichment is not on the Iranian agenda, and it will take much further effort - if not pressure - from the UNSC for Iran to consider agreeing to such a move. In the country's first official response to the U.S. offer, Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki rejected the American conditions, but said that Iran was willing to negotiate with any or all of the parties to the crisis. 'We support dialogue in a fair and unbiased atmosphere, but we will not talk about our undeniable and legitimate rights', Mottaki told reporters. 'We are ready to talk about common concerns, and if the conditions are such in a way that we have outlined... we are ready to negotiate with all parties'.

Debate Over U.S. Motives

The shift in the United States' position begs questions about the Washington administration's motives, in light of the historical animosity between the two nations.
No Choice? The most obvious interpretation is that the U.S. has realised that it has little hope of persuading fellow UNSC members to agree to tough sanctions without engaging more directly in diplomacy. It will have bitter memories of the problems it faced securing resolutions on Iraq, and this time round international opinion is even tougher. Many felt that U.S. diplomacy ahead of the Iraq war represented little more than 'going through the motions', and this time the United States has to work harder to dispel such interpretations. There is some speculation that a deal has already been reached behind the scenes with Russia and China, which would see them back tough sanctions so long as the U.S. made its new concession. There are also some practical reasons why the United States may feel its options have narrowed. The U.S. military is already stretched, given its commitments in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere, so can it adequately back up the threat of force against Iran? The Islamic Republic also has more influence over the United States at a time of high oil prices, and while militant groups in Iraq operate across the Iranian border.


Giving Iran Enough Rope to Hang Itself? The fact that such tough conditions are attached to U.S. engagement lends some weight to a more subtle interpretation - that the United States knows Iran will not bow to the requirements, and that its apparent intransigence will strengthen resolve against it within the UNSC. Officials are describing the offer of talks as a bigger test of whether Iran is prepared to engage meaningfully with the West.


Hawks Take a Back Seat? The change in the U.S. tack, whether in recognition of the lack of options or as part of a more subtle strategy - is widely seen as a victory for the more pragmatic moderates in the U.S. administration. These include - most notably - Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, whose influence appears to have grown at the expense of hawks such as Vice-President Dick Cheney. The latter's influence has apparently been on the decline for some time, amid the problems in Iraq.


Side Benefits? The limited U.S. concession over talks will help it to improve relations with its closest allies in Europe and its not-so-close allies such as China and Russia. There are many other bilateral and multilateral issues in play, and the United States will always be looking for additional leverage.

In reality, it seems that all four of these motives will have come into play to an extent, but one should not dismiss the U.S. gesture as meaningless. It does signal a slight shift in the diplomatic balance towards the Iranians, and reflects less self-confidence within the U.S. administration over its international strategy. Whether the concession makes any difference to the situation is very uncertain; experiments with engagement with North Korea over its nuclear programme have not set a promising precedent. The United States will have to soften its demands further if there is to be much chance of Iran coming to the table.

Outlook and Implications

In the long-running nuclear dispute, the ball is once more firmly in the Iranian court. That the United States has swallowed some pride and agreed to direct (albeit multi-party) talks with Iran should not be underestimated. Nor, however, should such a move be taken as a sign of weakness on the part of the United States. Given the nature of the current nuclear crisis, the American decision is perhaps best understood as soothing the concerns of Iran's powerful UNSC allies, Russia and China. The two veto-wielding powers remain resolutely opposed to any form of sanctions against Iran, and the EU and United States have yet to convince the Russians and the Chinese of the utility of sanctions. By 'going out on a limb' to accommodate global concerns and offering Iran an olive branch - however limited - the United States can claim to have exhausted all diplomatic channels and proved that Iran is not serious about negotiation. If such a policy succeeds, and Iran fails the diplomatic test, the prospects for greater international isolation will become dangerously more pronounced.

On a more positive note, however, Iranian political and religious officials may in fact reciprocate and kick-start a relationship that offers the wider Middle East region a little overdue hope. While there is no suggestion that the Iranian-U.S. animosity is expected to wither on the back of this new U.S. offer, an opportunity for a climb-down from the usual belligerent rhetoric has now presented itself. However, hard talk is the norm in international diplomacy, and it would not be entirely surprising is if the latest diplomatic overtures meet fierce resistance from hardliners within both the U.S. and Iranian administrations. Peaceful relations between the two arch-foes remain unthinkable.

June 02, 2006

IB chief told Sudarshan: you and RSS under threat

2 weeks ago, in quiet meeting, IB chief told Sudarshan: you and RSS under threat
Shishir Gupta / Stavan Desai




NEW DELHI, nagpur, June 1:On May 15, exactly a fortnight before today’s terror attack bid at the RSS headquarters in Nagpur, RSS Sarsanghchalak K S Sudarshan had an unusual visitor at the Sangh shivir in Dombivili in Mumbai’s outskirts. He was Director, Intelligence Bureau, E S L Narasimhan, who had quietly flown in from Delhi.

While the UPA government is tight-lipped about the meeting, the DIB went to Mumbai to inform Sudarshan that the RSS headquarters and he, personally, were under threat from Islamic fundamentalists.

Cleared at the highest levels including National Security Advisor M K Narayanan, Narasimhan is said to have apprised Sudarshan of the fact that Central agencies were upgrading his security as well as that of the Nagpur headquarters.

Top government sources told The Indian Express that Narasimhan was flown to brief Sudarshan as intelligence inputs from across the western border indicated that the RSS leadership could be attacked by members of the Lashkar-e-Toiba.

That input came true in the wee hours of Thursday morning with three suspected LeT militants being killed by the police near the RSS Headquarters in Nagpur.

Although security agencies say they are still working to identify the module behind the attack, the fact is that investigators have been working for over two months trying to crack the terror network that they suspected had been tasked to strike the RSS headquarters.

Official sources said Narasimhan went to Mumbai after Firoz Ghanswala, resident of Bharuch, and Mohmmed Ali Chippa, resident of Ahmedabad, were arrested by the Special Branch of Delhi Police on May 9.

The police recovered large quantities of RDX that both of them claimed to have procured from across the border with the help of Azam Cheema, a Lashkar operational commander in Pakistan.

During interrogation, Ali is said to have revealed that RSS headquarters in Nagpur and its leadership were on the Lashkar hitlist. Sources say this has been the case for a while because of jehadis’ refrain—in their literature and websites—blaming the RSS and its affiliates for the demolition of the Babri Masjid in 1992 and the 2002 Gujarat riots.

While Jaish-e-Mohammed has been targeting the Babri Masjid complex, the Lashkar has build modules in Maharashtra as confirmed by arrests in Aurangabad, Mumbai and Delhi

shishir.gupta@expressindia.com

6,000 soldiers for Amarnath security

Web posted at: 6/3/2006 7:50:11
Source ::: IANS

Jammu • The government is sending 50 additional companies of paramilitary forces to Jammu and Kashmir to augment the security cover for the forthcoming Amarnath pilgrimage, undertaken by thousands of Hindus every year.

Official sources disclosed that 50 companies or approximately 6,000 men would be manning the main routes leading to the cave-shrine nestled at the height of 13,500 feet above sea level in South Kashmir.

The shrine is accessible by a traditional route from Pahlgam, involving a trek of 46km, passing through the highest point of Mahagunus pass at the height of 14,500 feet.

It can also be accessed through a shorter route via Baltal on the Srinagar-Leh highway.

The fear of possible terrorist strikes on the Amarnath pilgrimage has risen following a spate of attacks on tourists in the Kashmir valley. Five tourists were killed and more than 60 injured in the four grenade explosions within a span of 10 days — May 22 to 31. Though there have been no attacks on pilgrims in the past three years, the authorities now are not ready to take any chances.

“We have sought help from the Centre, and we have been promised 50 companies of paramilitary forces. We expect them to arrive within the next few days,” a senior police officer said.

Besides, the units of Rashtriya Rifles, the counter-insurgency wing of the Indian army, along with the state police, will be looking after three-layers of security along the route. The security cover is provided from Jammu to the cave shrine.

This year, the pilgrimage starts June 11 and concludes on August 9. Around 500,000 pilgrims are expected to visit the shrine and offer prayers at the shrine dedicated to Lord Shiva.

Exodus of Trained Indian Airforce Pilots

Exodus of pilots from Indian Air Force has increased over the years both after or before completion of the terms of contract before age of superannuation
Below are details of the pilots with rank and flying hours who had quit the service during the last three years.

The details of the pilots who have been released from the service during the last three years (from January 2003 to April 2006) are as indicated below:


Flying Officer - 01
Flight Lieutenant - 18
Squadron Leader - 31
Wing Commander - 166
Group Captain - 55
Air Commodore - 03
Air Vice Marshal - 01
Total - 275

Most of the pilots who have been released from service had completed more than 1000 flying hours.



The cost involved in training of an IAF pilot is given below:-(a) Ex-NDA Cadets:

(i) Fighter aircraft - Rs. 885.18 lakh
(ii) Transport aircraft - Rs. 368.11 lakh
(iii) Helicopters - Rs. 235.69 lakh

(b) Non-NDA Cadets:

(i) Fighter aircraft - Rs. 886.3 lakh
(ii) Transport aircraft - Rs. 369.23 lakh
(iii) Helicopters - Rs. 236.82 lakh

Source: Parliament Q & A
Minister of DEFENCE

June 01, 2006

PAKISTAN: BALUCH TRIBAL PRINCE LOSES FAITH IN STATE

Baluchistan's Nawabzada or Prince, Mir Lashkari Khan Raisani in Quetta

PAKISTAN: BALUCH TRIBAL PRINCE LOSES FAITH IN STATE
http://www.adnki.com/index_2Level_English.php?cat=Security&loid=8.0.305389768&par=0

Quetta, 1 June (AKI) - (by Syed Saleem Shahzad) - Home to Pakistan's largest gas and oil reserves, the volatile south-western province of Baluchistan is the key for Pakistan to become an economic power in the region. The government plans to eliminate the tribal system in the province by December 2006 and bring it under a series of municipal authorities. However, a six-month long campaign by the military to rein in the province's tribal rebels, who are demanding greater political and economic rights, appears to have achieved only one thing - lose the support of the tribal groups that were pro-establishment.

One such tribal group that has now lost faith in Pakistan are the Raisanis. Unlike the warring Mari, Bugti and Mengal tribes, Raisanis have always been considered docile and pro-establishment. However, Islamabad's ambitions to pacify Baluchistan have turned Raisanis hostile as well.

Amongst all tribal chiefs in Baluchistan, the king of Qalat (who was considered the King of Baluchistan) and the Raisanis (second only to the Qalat family) were the only ones who were recognised under British colonial rule as "Chiefs" of the province.

"Our family has been holding important ministeries in Baluchistan and my father was the first civilian governor of Baluchistan, yet the [Pakistani] establishment is not ready to treat us as citizens and is rather forcing us to a complete surrender, said Baluchistan's Nawabzada or Prince Haji Mir Lashkari Khan Raisani in an interview with Adnkronos International (AKI) at his home in Quetta.

"We refused and that is why we are now facing the music,"
he said.

Baluchistan, which border both Iran and Afghanistan, is Pakistan's largest but poorest province. It has been plagued by violent attacks carried out by tribal separatists demanding more political autonomy and a greater share of the area's resources, most of whose revenues go to the central government. The separatists have targeted gas plants, electricity lines and railway tracks.

In December last year, the violence escalated when rebel tribesmen fired rockets during a visit by Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf to a Baluch town. Musharraf has announced plans for major infrastructure projects in Baluchistan to win back support but the authorities have vowed to deal sternly with the militants.

The Pakistani government has said that it is working to eliminate the tribal system from Balochistan which it says is tyrannical and stifles the region's progress and development.

However Mir Lashkari does not agree.

"There is a misconception about the tribal system," he said. "From top to bottom we all are blood relatives in a tribe. My guards are my blood relatives. The tribes' region is the collective property of all in which every segment of a tribe gets an equal share. One person is selected as tribal chief and gets a bigger portion from the assets of a tribe only because he manages the affairs on behalf his men and needs the resources," Lashkari explained.

"This is an arrangement agreed by all men living here so who give the people sitting in Islamabad the right to disturb and intervene in this arrangement," the tribal chief maintained.

Lashkari insisted that if gas reserves are found underneath the soil owned by a tribe, the local people have exclusive rights on that.

And this is exactly the point of disagreement between Islamabad and Baluch tribes; Islamabad feels that all natural resources are the owned by the state.

It's the potential of these natural resources that has made Baluchistan so valuable for Pakistan which plans to make the province a nucleus and transit point for energy pipelines. There are some 42 multi-national companies interested or already engaged in oil and gas exploration in the province.

Regional players like India, Afghanistan and Iran are also interested because of its geographic proximity while plans by the government to construct a deep sea port at Gwadar and a road link with Afghanistan and central Asia, has put the province in the centre of a struggle between China, Russia and the United States to hold their ground in Central and Southwest Asia.

Baluchi tribes and the Pakistani government have long been engaged in this tussle and it's finally erupted into a bloody conflict, with all the top tribal chiefs on one side and the state on the other.

However with the help of state resources and influence, some smaller tribes are assisting the government to pacify Baluchistan by the end of 2006.

A similar battle is being fought in Mehrgarh. The archaeological site, which dates back to a civilisation in 7,000 BC and lies between the between the present-day cities of Quetta, Kalat and Sibi in Baluchistan, was destroyed in 2001. The tribal heirs of the area, the Raisanis, were displaced by the Pakistani forces after they refused to support the military establishment and a pro-government tribe was put in their place .

According to Lashkari, the problem began in 2001 when the military establishment forced the Raisainis to support General Pervez Musharraf in a national referendum which was held to recognize him as president of Pakistan.

"Instead we asserted ourselves and opposed the referendum," Lashkari maintained.

"The then [army] corps commander of Quetta Lt. General [now retired] Abdul Qadir Baluch summoned me and my elder brother Nawab Aslam and urged us to allow those unscruplous elements into our area otherwise, he threatened us, we would lose our status," Lashkari recalled.

"The meeting ended on a bitter note and we made it clear that we would not adhere to any of the military's dictates. As soon as we returned back to our area, a hostile campaign against us started in which we were charged in false cases. We bravely faced those cases and refused to surrender but then the state came out with full force," he said.

"That was November 2001 when our area Mehrgarh, which we have owned since 1762 [Mehr Gargh is situated 80 miles in south-east of the provincial capital Quetta] was surrounded by the Rind tribe which is headed by a federal minister Yar Mohammed Rind. They were fully armed and they entered our area under complete state patronage. They destroyed our houses and belongings," he said.

According to Lashkari, Mehrgarh, was discovered 30 years ago by a French team headed by archaeologist and director of the the Musee Guimet in Paris, Jean Francais Jirrage, who also has an office in the Mehrgarh site. There are a total of 8 sites, one of which dates back to 5000 BC while the rest were dated to 7000 BC.

"French archealogists have been working on those sites under our patronage for the last 30 years and they established some go-downs where they keep precious material and their equipment. That all was looted. The sites were destroyed," said Lashkari.

The French archaeologists have said that they have faced difficulties during the exploration work in the area and regretted that Mehrgarh site had been vandalized and the exploratory work had come to a standstill. The work has not yet been resumed fully.

"3000 of our tribesmen were forced out from their land and now they are all displaced. Some are in Afghanistan, some are in the Sindh province and some are in Quetta. We are also living as refugees in Quetta," he said.

"We tried to register a case against the invaders. A case was registered in which 50 rupees [less than one US dollar] was the penalty stated besides a few months in prison!" he said.

"When Musharraf visited France, the French President [Jacques Chirac in 2003] complained about the Mehrgarh incident in which a site was destroyed. The result was negative and when Musharraf came back to Pakistan, the noose was further tightened around us," Lashkari maintained.

"When Pakistan was dismembered in 1971 [when East Pakistan became the independent nation of Bangladesh] we were all crying in our houses in the love of our country but when we now see the high-handedness of the state we feel that perhaps we never did belong to this country," Lashkari concluded.



(Syed Saleem Shahzad/Aki)

Kunhallikutty had links with NDF

www.haindavakeralam.org
5/31/2006 4:50:59 AM HK Correspondent

“Kunhallikutty had links with NDF”,This statement is not made by any BJP official nor by DGP of Kerala but by Sunni Yuvajana Sanghamam an organisation of Muslim youth in Kerala! It was in the editorial of their magazine they came out with this revealing comment.(The same was alleged by Hindu organisations since long time, especially after Maradu Massacre,but then it is sidelined by PseudoSeculars and Media as part of Sangh pariwar agenda! Now also they may come out supporting Kunhallikutty by saying that Sangh Pariwar must have infiltrated in this Muslim organisation)

Now it is the time for IUML to do homework and see where it went wrong in appeasing the Muslim mass.The common readymade answer of all IUML sympathisers is that it is the relationship of IUML (claims to be another secular party) with terrorist organization behind the failure in elections.Youth league leaders are competing in issuing statements against the Islamic Fundamentalist wings like NDF and PDP.But the NDF claims that all these Youth and Senior leaders were wagging their tails behind them for their support in elections.

So what one can learn from their analysis is that Terrorist wings who used to support them in previous elections haven’t supported IUML in this elections! So one thing is sure the terrorist organizations of Islam now have significant voice among the Muslims in Kerala.Another thing which we should understand is that now those terrorist organizations who supported IUML previously had now shifted their loyalty to Communist parties.

What a Hindu should learn from this phenomena is that, whether they vote for UDF nor to LDF it is the Islamic Terrorist who decides who should rule Kerala.Marx told “Religion is the opium of Massess” ,but for our comrades in Kerala who have been addicted by a powerful opium called “POWER” they can skillfully forget the ageold teachings of Marx and is ready to go to any extend in appeasing the Minority religious sentiments.

The new Hero of LDF K.T.Jaleel, who again accusses IUML for its terrorist links, but the first thing he done after winning elections is to book a train to Coimbatore.He went to seek the blessings of PDP terrorist Abdul Nasser Madni who is in Jail for various crimes and terrorist activities including Plotting Coimbatore Riots and attempting to kill L.K.Adwani in a bomb blast.It is not only Jaleel but Sreemathi teacher of CPM also went to Madni’s house to sympathise with his wife Soofia Madni,who was also a prime suspect in Tamilnadu Bus burning at Kalammassery.

SunilKumar,AswiniKumar,Manikandan..the lists are long who was brutally murdered by Islamic Terrorists,No single leader came up to sympatise with them..Leave it because they don’t want to hurt the soft feelings of Minorities if they visits the homes of people associated with Sangh Pariwar..But why not for Maniappan? Who was brutally murdered by Talibanic Extremists..He also has parents,A widow, Kids..why noone is going to share their Sorrows? Still govt. promises made to Maniappans family remains unfulfilled..Noone wants to expediate it..Just because Hindus in Kerala are a fightinglot among themselves, Their leaders have no political vision..Unless the attitude of Hindus in Kerala changes, they will remain as the puppets in the hands of LDF,UDF and now the terrorists.

New technology could make target acquisition more accurate

by Staff Sgt. C. Todd Lopez
Air Force Print News

5/26/2006 - WASHINGTON (AFPN) -- At this moment, above Iraq and Afghanistan, American data sensors are collecting information and intelligence about what is happening on the ground.

What happens to the data depends largely on a sensor's owner and its mission. The data could be reviewed immediately, or it could be stored for later use. What is for sure is that terabytes of information, wherever they come from, often go unused -- left on a secure hard drive until they are no longer relevant to anyone.

The Air Force is now engaged in an experiment to take that data and make use of it the moment it comes off sensors. During the Northern Edge exercise this June in Alaska, the Air Force will test a system that does just that: the Global Net Centric Surveillance and Targeting, or GNCST, system.

Called "Gun Coast" by those involved with the project, the system can take near real-time information from a nearly unlimited set of data sensors and process it into useable information for the warfighter, said Maj. Gen. Gregory H. Power, Air Force director of operations and support integration.

"With GNCST, a lot of platforms and capabilities will be fusing their data into one single funnel and GNCST is at the bottom of the funnel," he said. "It takes all that information in, and through algorithms, is able to digest and disseminate very quickly and very accurately, the position of something like a (surface-to-air missile) site."

The system uses a Web-based interface on a secured computer network. An end user might access the system and ask it to locate surface-to-air missiles that appeared in a specific region within the last 45 minutes. The GNCST system would then respond, in as little as a few seconds, with target coordinates for those SAMs.

That type of responsiveness and accuracy would be of great use to pilots, General Power said.

"If we had a sortie that was going to attack a target, GNCST might identify a mobile SAM system that had moved into the area as the aircraft took off," General Power said.

"Of course, the pilot would not know about that," he said. "But by having GNCST and being able to digest that data -- getting it accurately and fast -- that data would be available for the air operations center to pass to the pilot. This really is a kind of life-saving technology that, once fully developed, is really going to give us an edge on the battlefield."

The Air Force processes much of its intelligence information by using manpower. But, humans who process intelligence information cannot work as fast or process as much data as the machines.

"A human being processing the data we are talking about here, it could take in some cases days, sometimes even weeks," General Power said. "This machine-to-machine interface we will have with GNCST will allow us to do it in seconds, minutes at most. And the timeliness and accuracy of the information is the value we bring to the warfighter."

The GNCST system was developed primarily to locate SAM sites, but it can be modified to find any number of potential threats, from Scud missiles to tanks. Complex computer algorithms allow the system to look at nearly any kind of raw sensor data and locate threats. And as the GNCST system develops, those algorithms will be adjusted to recognize any new threats.

"In the future, this target set will grow to eventually include all threats," General Power said. "The database will be a living document, if you will. The list of threat systems will continuously be changing. As new systems are developed they, too, will be added to the database."

The GNCST system could even find "non-threat systems," General Power said.

One concern with allowing a computer to pick a target is the fear of removing the "human element" from the kill chain. In the Air Force command and control community, "kill chain" refers to the series of events leading from identification of a potential target to the ultimate destruction or "kill" of that target. The target could be a building, a cave, a convoy or a communications tower.

While the kill chain can be shortened through the use of computers, at the end, there is always a human who makes the final decision to employ force, General Power said. That will not be eliminated with implementation of GNCST.

"Just like in any execution decision, there will be rules of engagement on scenarios," he said. "Once the concept of operations is developed, there will be certain checks and balances in it. The final element is the executing human being -- the pilot on the sortie -- at the end of the kill chain who will have the final say on if they drop on the target."

Development of the GNCST system is spearheaded by the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency. Partners in the project include the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Md., and the United States Strategic Command.

While the system is only in development now, General Power said he hopes the Air Force signs on for the system. Its performance at Northern Edge will figure into the Air Force's decision to become more involved in the technology.

"This technology has a lot of promise and we want to see it developed," General Power said. "We are pretty optimistic that it will succeed."

"GNCST will bring intelligence information with more accuracy in a much shorter time period than currently possible," he added. "It means we can find and accurately locate bad guys in a much shorter period of time, and hopefully prevent them from causing harm to friendly forces -- in other words, saving friendly lives."

New fuels system saving Air Force time, money

by Staff Sgt. Ryan Hansen
386th Air Expeditionary Wing Public Affairs

5/31/2006 - SOUTHWEST ASIA (AFPN) -- Airmen here are refueling aircraft faster than ever before and doing it with fewer people, thanks to the next generation of fuels mobility support equipment.

The new system is called Fuels Operational Readiness Capability Equipment, or FORCE. This equipment is making life easier for Airmen and saving the Air Force time and money across the board.

“FORCE will become the standard in the (area of responsibility),” said Master Sgt. Stacy Baker, fuels management flight superintendent for the 386th Expeditionary Logistics Readiness Squadron. “It’s really making a big difference for us.”

The fuels management flight provides all refueling support for the 386th Air Expeditionary Wing, the Japanese Self Defense Force and the South Korean air force stationed here. They also supply all ground fuel support for the base.

“The ops tempo here is relatively high,” Sergeant Baker said, “so we’re glad to have the new system.”

FORCE has helped the flight cut aircraft refueling time by almost half. With the old system it took a four-person team, with four pieces of equipment, around 42 minutes to refill a C-17 Globemaster III.

“With FORCE, we can do it with two people and two pieces of equipment in 24 minutes,” said Sergeant Baker, who is deployed from Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany. “The C-17 crews absolutely love it.”

The new system also lets the team refill two of their fuel trucks simultaneously. Before FORCE they could only do one at a time.

“After we empty a 6,000-gallon refueler, I can go out to the FORCE equipment, fill it back up and be out at the next aircraft in 30 minutes,” said Tech. Sgt. Gregory Goode Sr., NCO in charge of FORCE, who is deployed from Shaw Air Force Base, S.C. “With the old system it would take us about 45 to 60 minutes, so we’re saving almost 30 minutes.”

FORCE also helps the flight when they refill fuel bladders.

“With FORCE we can receive fuel at about 600 to 700 gallons per minute,” Sergeant Goode said. “That’s very much faster than it used to be. The old equipment would maybe hit 400 gallons per minute, so we’re almost double that.”

The new equipment can be compared to equipment that troops use back home. It pumps similar amounts of fuel at similar rates of capacity. However, FORCE is mobile.

“With FORCE, we have more flexibility,” Sergeant Baker said. “If the flightline layout were to change or the operations tempo increased and we needed to adjust, we can move it to meet the need.”

The equipment first arrived in the area in late 2005; during the two subsequent rotations it was tested by the fuels management flight. With the arrival of the latest rotation, FORCE’s testing is now complete. The 25 Airmen of the flight are all glad to have FORCE on board.

“The new system pumps a lot faster, gets the aircraft off quicker and keeps the fuel trucks rolling faster,” said Senior Airman Zak Lancaster, FORCE operator, who is deployed from Spangdahlem AB. “It’s really a great system.”

In addition to the advantages FORCE brings to the current rotation, its effects may be felt by Airmen even further down the line. With its increased capability, the number of deployed members to the unit should decrease.

“Our biggest savings is going to be with manpower positions,” Sergeant Baker said. “Obviously that has to be worked out ... but because of FORCE we’ll eventually be able to cut the numbers of people deploying here.”

Currently this is the only FORCE system in use anywhere in the world. But plans are in the works to build another one for Airmen at the fuels technical school at Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas.

“I really think it’s going to be a great system for us,” Sergeant Goode said.

Industrial Riots Reveal Bangladesh's Crisis of Governance

SOURCE: http://www.pinr.com

Between May 20 and 24, the South Asian country of Bangladesh underwent the most severe and widespread industrial rioting in its history, as workers in its booming textile export industry torched 16 factories, ransacked 300 more and went on a general rampage, destroying cars, blocking roads, intimidating perceived adversaries and looting.

As the rioting spread from the Gazipur industrial district throughout the textile belt and into the capital Dhaka, government security forces held back from making a decisive response, triggering a counter-demonstration by factory owners who sat cross-legged in Dhaka's main thoroughfare demanding that the army be brought in to quell the disorders on pain of indefinite plant closures.

The violence peaked and seemed to be getting out of control on May 23 -- "Black Tuesday" -- finally impelling the government to deploy paramilitary forces, which succeeded in quieting down the situation. Meanwhile, negotiations began between labor unions and the owners, mediated by the government, that resulted in an agreement fulfilling many of the workers' demands for higher wages and more favorable work rules. By Thursday, May 26, the violence had ended, factories were reopening and owners were demanding government compensation for their losses. The death toll stood at two workers, with hundreds of people injured.

The riots have geoeconomic significance because they mark one of the first instances of successful mass direct labor action against the export manufacturing sector in a developing country. Under the neoliberal model of capitalist globalization, development will be achieved in an environment of free trade and investment, in which poor countries utilize their comparative advantage in labor costs to generate and attract capital, leading to expanded employment. The riots reveal resistance to the working conditions and compensation levels that are partly behind comparative advantage, raising questions about the political viability of the neoliberal model.

The geopolitical significance of the riots lies in the fact that they reveal the weakness of the Bangladeshi state. The failure of the government to contain the violence quickly and opting instead for half measures that satisfied neither side and did nothing to bring them to an agreement points to an implosion of governability and indicates that Bangladesh is drifting toward the status of a failed state. This has implications for the stability of the South Asian region.

Hyper-Partisanship

Surrounded by India on three sides, with Myanmar to its southeast and a southern coastline on the Bay of Bengal, Bangladesh is a poor country with a long list of problems that have hindered its political and economic development.

Half of Bangladesh's population of 152.6 million -- densely concentrated in the delta region on the Bay of Bengal -- lives on less than US$1 per day. Two-thirds of the labor force is employed in agriculture and the literacy rate is 41 percent. The country is a large net labor exporter, with 400,000 Bangladeshis working in the United Arab Emirates alone, and remittances from abroad contribute the largest portion of foreign exchange.

Due to its geographical position, Bangladesh is subject to recurrent and severe tropical storms and floods that have caused frequent humanitarian disasters and have resulted in dependence on aid from foreign donors.

The disadvantageous material and economic situation of Bangladesh is a cause of and is compounded by the lack of integration of its political class. Since its adoption of democratic institutions in 1990, after a chaotic succession of ineffective military governments, the country has been riven by severe and persistent conflicts between its two major political parties -- the Awami League (A.L.) and the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (B.N.P.). Whichever party is out of power attempts to undermine the government through strikes and non-cooperation. The destructive rivalry between the A.L. and the B.N.P. is decidedly partisan rather than programmatic or ideological, although the A.L. is allied with left and secular parties and the B.N.P. with Islamic parties.

The animosity between the A.L. and B.N.P. is rooted in Bangladesh's pre-democratic period, which followed its achievement of independence from Pakistan in 1971 after a bloody war in which India provided vital assistance to the independence movement, spearheaded by the A.L. and its leader Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, who became the fledgling country's first president.

Mujibur instituted a failed socialist economic program and was ousted in a military coup in 1975. In the following decade, military regimes replaced each other, none of them capable of effective governance. The B.N.P. arose out of the forces associated with military rule and its coalition included elements that had opposed the independence movement.

The shadow cast by the pre-democratic period over Bangladesh's contemporary politics is graphically evident in the fact that the A.L.'s leader, former Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina Wajed, is Mujibur's daughter, and the B.N.P.'s leader, current Prime Minister Khaleda Zia, is the widow of General Ziaur Rahman, who ruled the country from 1977 until 1981 when he was assassinated in a military coup.

The failure of the two tendencies in the pre-democratic period to reconcile with one another within democratic institutions has led to chronically ineffective governance, exacerbated by unwillingness to compromise and readiness to take direct action, with general strikes the preferred tactic. Most recently, on April 20, 2006, the A.L. called a general strike demanding Khaleda's resignation in the midst of a row over the constitution of the country's electoral commission. Until February 2006, the A.L. had been boycotting parliament after violent attacks on its rallies.

The lack of integration of Bangladesh's political class has had the consequence that the country has been the most corrupt in the world for the past five years -- according to Transparency International's ratings -- with the problem concentrated in the police, taxation and land agencies. As the public sector has contracted and liberal economic reforms have proceeded sluggishly, the government has retreated from economic conflicts, leaving the players to reach their own balances of power.

Ineffective governance can only last so long before extra-parliamentary forces move in to offer their own non-liberal solutions. Bangladesh's predominantly Muslim population has practiced a moderate and tolerant form of Islam, but that has begun to change with the appearance of radical Islamist and Islamic revolutionary movements. On August 17, 2005, 350 bombs went off across the country, leaving two dead and 100 injured, in a coordinated attack that was blamed on Islamists. On November 15, more bombings killed 12 people. On March 6, 2006, the government captured Siddiqui Islam, the reputed leader of Jagrata Muslim Janata (J.M.J.), which was held responsible for the bombings. The J.M.J. is an illegal offshoot of the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh, a party in the B.N.P.'s coalition. The A.L. accused the B.N.P. of supporting terrorism, claiming that the arrest was a political ploy in advance of January 2007 elections.

With the labor riots, the left shoe of extra-parliamentary action has dropped. Workers had demonstrated previously, but the protests had been confined and usually limited to demands that individual owners pay wages that had gone into arrears. Factory owners, joined later by B.N.P. politicians, blamed the riots on agitation and provocation by "vested quarters," hinting at a pre-election ploy by the A.L. to discredit the government and warning of a conspiracy orchestrated by India -- a textiles competitor -- to destroy Bangladesh's garment sector.

The severity of Bangladesh's partisanship is epitomized by the failure of the putatively democratic parties to close ranks against extra-parliamentary tendencies. Instead, they both have added fuel to the fires, accusing one another of connivance with those tendencies. The appearance of left and right oppositions outside the mainstream parties adds new strains on Bangladesh's already weak political system, rendering the prospects for effective governance even less likely than they were previously. Foreign Policy magazine has rated Bangladesh a failing state, a designation that recent events have confirmed. While economic and material conditions form the background for possible state failure in the country, its proximate cause is hyper-partisanship.

The Textiles Sector

Amid the material, economic and political obstacles to Bangladesh's development, its textiles export sector -- specializing in readymade garments -- has been the single positive factor. With 2500 factors and 1.8 million workers -- 90 percent of whom are women -- the garment industry accounts for 70 percent of Bangladesh's $9.3 billion annual export earnings and employs 40 percent of its industrial labor force. When the costs of imported materials are factored in, the textiles sector yields a $2.6 billion surplus.

All of the major U.S. and European buyers, such as Wal-Mart and Carrefour, have contracts with Bangladesh's garment producers, most of which are domestically owned, although foreign investment has grown in recent years. The success of the industry has had significant spillover effects on other sectors of the country's economy, such as banking, insurance, shipping and real estate. Backward-linkage industries, such as spinning mills, have also sprung up, cutting dependence on imported materials.

Bangladesh's textiles sector was nurtured by the international Multi-Fiber Agreement (M.F.A.), which guaranteed the country an export quota. With the end of the M.F.A. in 2005, analysts predicted that Bangladesh would suffer a severe loss of market share to lower cost producers, particularly China and India. Instead, textile exports have increased by 20 percent over the last nine months, partly because of U.S. and European restrictions on Chinese imports that expire in 2008, when analysts forecast that the struggle to preserve market share will begin in earnest.

In its quarterly report on post-M.F.A. adjustments -- released on May 26 -- the United Nations Development Program noted that Bangladeshi producers had experienced increased price competition, forcing them to lower prices; and had faced mounting pressure from buyers to enforce labor codes, raising costs. In the post-M.F.A. environment, Bangladesh lost market share in the E.U., but gained in the United States. On the whole, the Asia-Pacific region fared well, with its market share rising from 41 to 49 percent, with African, Caribbean and Central American countries the big losers.

The rise of Bangladesh's garment sector has not been attended by a corresponding improvement in labor compensation and working conditions. The monthly minimum wage of $14 was set in 1994, but the cost of living has doubled since then. Workers often put in 20 hour days, have not had guaranteed holidays, are frequently required to work overtime -- sometimes without additional compensation -- and sometimes have their wages go into arrears for more than two months.

Owners point out that conditions are not uniform throughout the industry and that some workers earn more than $200 per month. They claim that long work days and overtime are seasonal and are necessary to fill orders at peak times. Nonetheless, as the garment industry has flourished, real wages have fallen.

The conditions of textile workers have also been affected by general economic conditions, particularly rising food and energy costs, and failures of public utilities that have generated street protests and strikes. The contrast between the success of the garment sector and the deteriorating economic standing of its workers is a determining factor in the outbreak of the riots.

Industrial Warfare

As is the case for any major mass disturbance, the events of the textile riots are shrouded in the fog of war. Most accounts trace the first wave of disturbances in Gazipur and the second wave that embraced the entire belt to the familiar disputes over unpaid wages, but conflicting reports mention disputes over piecework rates. There are stories of gangs of provocateurs in black t-shirts and green helmets or, alternatively, blue t-shirts, invading factories and mobilizing and intimidating workers. There are stories of workers defending their factories against the rioters and stories of workers destroying their factories. Some reports put the number of rioters in the tens of thousands; others state the number to be smaller. What is uncontested is that as word of the troubles spread and rumors of abuses by police and private security forces become rife, the disorder became general and embracing, and the government did not intervene decisively until May 24, after the riots had gone on for four days.

With an insurrection in process, the Bangladesh Garment Workers Trade Union Center issued a series of demands, including Friday holidays, a 30 percent wage hike, no forced overtime, payment of wages in arrears and release of arrested workers and union officials. Alarmed by government inaction, the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association demanded that the army be deployed to suppress the riots and expressed willingness to negotiate with the unions at the same time that it filed a suit against six labor leaders.

The manufacturers failed to convince the government to bring out the army and were unsuccessful in their attempts to get the Commerce Ministry to mediate the conflict. With Prime Minister Khaleda on a visit to the United Arab Emirates with the purpose of gaining energy concessions and expanding the number of guest workers, the government was unable to come up with a unified response. Finally, the paramilitary Bangladesh Rifles were dispatched and relative order was restored on May 24.

The government also stepped in on May 24 to bring the unions and manufacturers together in a six-hour bargaining session that resulted in an agreement in which the manufacturers promised to raise wages, provide a 90 day maternity leave, issue appointment letters to all employees and pay workers full wages for the month of May.

The government agreed to release arrested workers and union officials, and to drop the cases against them. It also promised to set up a "minimum wage board for the garment sector and take steps to meet the demands of garment workers," and -- in a bow to the manufacturers -- to investigate the causes of the riots.

The unions declared victory and the owners demanded government compensation for their losses, which they estimated to be $70 million.

For the unions and their supporters, the riots were simply the result of pent-up grievances exploding after more peaceful efforts at redress had repeatedly failed. The manufacturers viewed it differently, raising the questions of how the disorder spread so rapidly, why workers would destroy their own livelihoods and how the male tenth of the textiles workforce could wreak such devastation. Their answer was that there had been a conspiracy of domestic and foreign "vested quarters" -- especially an unnamed country presumed to be India -- bent on wrecking Bangladesh's garment industry by causing an "artificial image crisis." The manufacturers claimed that the riots had caused $35 million worth of orders to be diverted to India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, raised serious concerns among buyers, and dampened the enthusiasm of prospective foreign investors.

The conspiracy theory was affirmed by some circles in government led by Local Government Minister and B.N.P. leader Abdul Mannan Bhuiyan. Local analysts, however, were at a loss to identify the domestic vested quarters, since the A.L., which remained outside the fray, is supported by the manufacturers, along with the B.N.P., and individual owners are members of both parties. The involvement of New Delhi has not been proven.

The best that can be said is that even if external provocation played a role in the riots, their scale and intensity bespeak genuine worker resentment. The concessions made to the unions by the manufacturers and government also indicate acknowledgement that the troubles were more than an "artificial image crisis." Recognition that the conflict is genuine does not, however, rule out external provocation and manipulation; the questions raised by the manufacturers also have cogency, even though there are no ready answers to them.

Conclusion

The textile riots in Bangladesh point most immediately to the country's political instability and to a possible crisis of governance and state failure. A German trade delegation visiting Dhaka during the troubles passed over the labor conflict and identified Bangladesh's root problem in attracting foreign investment as partisan strife. The problem of governability was poignantly expressed by State Minister for Home Affairs Lutfozzaman Babar, who was responsible for dealing with the riots. Responding to questions about lack of advance intelligence, Babar dismissed their relevance, saying that he did not need to have special intelligence to know that there was trouble brewing, but that he had been powerless to act effectively: "One has to realize my strength."

The Bangladeshi state is not immediately threatened with collapse and neither the left nor right extra-parliamentary opposition is strong or popular enough to mount a takeover. Nonetheless, continued hyper-partisanship will increase the strains on already fragile democratic institutions, paving the way for more direct action and -- if state failure proceeds -- for possible troubles along the border with India from separatist and Islamist groups seeking safe havens.

The future of the textiles sector in Bangladesh is already clouded by increasing competition from larger rival Asian states and has become more so due to the victory of the unions. It remains to be seen whether the new agreement will lead to more harmonious labor-management relations and, if so, whether harmony will lead to productivity gains and maintenance of comparative advantage.

Beyond Bangladesh, the riots and the agreement that resulted from them show a resistance to the way in which export sectors in developing countries have gained a foothold by keeping labor costs down. Economists have long predicted that worker pressures would eventually assert themselves, especially in countries with democratic institutions. The problem is that those pressures are uneven and disadvantage countries where they appear to the benefit of countries where they are suppressed. Bangladesh may be a harbinger of developments to come, but the success of the push from below depends in great part on whether the same will happen elsewhere, particularly in China, and on whether buyers will insist on the enforcement of labor codes, both of which are problematic at best.

The riots in Bangladesh are another indication that the period of neoliberal globalization has come to an end and will be replaced not by a new model, but by a dizzying array of local and regional adjustments.

Report Drafted By:
Dr. Michael A. Weinstein

: Ethnic tensions and the regime’s last stand

Iran: Ethnic tensions and the regime’s last stand



6/1/2006 KurdishMedia.com - By Sirvan Kaveh

Amnesty International today expressed alarm at the cycle of violence in the Iranian province of Kordestan and neighbouring Kurdish areas
There is little new about the most recent events taking place in the predominantly Azeri areas of northwestern Iran where “ethnic” protests have been rocking the region. The protests began in the city of Tabriz and quickly spread to Zanjan and Ardebil, and then to the nearby Kurdish city of Urmîye, where large populations of ethnic Azeris also live. Iran’s so-called Security Forces have opened fire on the protestors leaving at least 3 people dead. Many blame these protests on the recent publication of an insulting cartoon, which depicts the Azeri as a cockroach. However, these “ethnic” protests have more likely been another explosion of the forever escalating, ethnic tensions in Iran. Iran is composed of several ethnic groups from Azeris to Arabs, Baluchis, Turkmen, and of course, Kurds. All of which lack basic cultural, political, economical and human rights.

April of last year, Arabs from the Ahwaz region in Iran held their large protests and were also met with repression and harsh punishment by Iranian “Security” Forces. The protests began when a letter started floating around, which called for the relocation of ethnic Arabs from the Ahwaz region. This stirred up some trouble for Iranian officials when Arabs reacted to the letter with widespread protest. Aside from denying the letters legitimacy, the Iranian Security Forces continued with their usual tactics and killed an unconfirmed 20 people and injured hundreds of others. Since April, unrest has continued in Ahwaz where explosions and protests rock the region and arrests and executions are, of course, an everyday practice.

And then there were the Kurds…

Thousands of people all over Eastern Kurdistan protested the Iranian government last summer, 2005, in the cities of Mihabad, Sine, Merîwan, Sino, Bane, Urmîye, Makû and Kirmasan, just to name a few. The protests were met with fierce repression by Iranian “Security” Forces and paramilitaries. Protestors were shot at from helicopters; tens were killed, and hundreds were arrested and are still imprisoned to this day. Finally, Amnesty International reported early August of 2005:

Amnesty International today expressed alarm at the cycle of violence in the Iranian province of Kordestan and neighbouring Kurdish areas, which has reportedly left up to 20 people dead, hundreds wounded. Hundreds of others are believed to have been arrested, including prominent Kurdish human rights defenders and activists.


Hundreds closed down their shops in Eastern Kurdistan and thousands more protested in the streets. It was reported by a number of different special sources and opposition groups that over 1000 people were arrested in what is known among Kurds as Eastern Kurdistan’s capital city, Sine. The prisons in the Sine area had quickly filled up to capacity and over 100 prisoners were transferred to the Urmîye prison further north. Among the prisoners was Dr. Roya Toloyî; a Kurdish Women Rights Activist and the head of the Rasan newspaper. She was accused of leading the protests and was imprisoned and tortured for 66 days. Her case received more attention than the others and she was finally released but not acquitted.

Despite these events, the world remained relatively silent and not one major news outlet in the West seemed to pick up on these events. One must always wonder why the U.S. would not want to use such events to their advantage as a basis for justifying a future war on Iran. For most of us the answer to this question is quite obvious. And of course, we keep in mind that giving any group attention means also giving attention to the groups’ demands; more particularly, the worst of fears: Kurdish demands.

Like the other recent “ethnic” protests, the events in Eastern Kurdistan were blamed on a single event that agitated the people. The murder of Sivan Qedrî, leader of the organized youth in Eastern Kurdistan, who was killed by paramilitaries. He was accused of organizing several anti-governmental protests and his murder came shortly after Kurds held celebrations in the streets of Mihabad for the appointing of Celal Talebanî as the first Kurdish president of Iraq. The later protests demanded that the Iranian Government give political rights, like those in Iraq, to their own Kurdish population. Consequently, Sivan was shot and his body was tied to a truck and dragged around the city of Mihabad for several hours. To this very day, people are forbidden to visit Sivan’s gravesite. The last visit resulted in clashes between Kurdish mourners and Iranian paramilitaries.

There is clear involvement of opposition groups in the above protests. Protests that were initiated by civil unrest were further institigated by the opposition groups. Many opposition groups, particularly the Kurdish Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI) and Komala, maintain strong relationships and influence in Eastern Kurdistan. Their influence is most efficiently used in these restless circumstances.

In the meantime, other opposition groups and members of the protestors’ ethnic groups have picked up their guns and small bombs to battle the Iranian Forces near their borders. While Jundallah, a Balûçî opposition group, sets off explosions in Iran’s southeastern Balûçî region, the PJAK or Partî Jîyanî Azadî Kurdistan, has started a war in Iran’s west, in Eastern Kurdistan. Reports have claimed that PJAK has killed over 120 Iranian police within a 6-month period.

Outside of Iran, opposition groups prepare themselves and campaign for international support to their cause. More particularly, United States support. Recently, a conference which included PDKI, Komala, Baluchistan Peoples Party, the Democratic Solidarity of Ahwaz Arabs, Organization for Defense of the Rights of Turkmen People, and the Diplomatic Commission of South Azerbaijan took place in Washington D.C. This is another move to secure a strong front against the Islamic Regime.

What does Iran have to say about all of this?

The Iranian Government no longer has a turning point to produce anything positive. There responses to each and every demonstation by the ethnic groups within Iran’s borders have been more killing and more arrests. The aggressive strategies of Iran’s first enemy, the United States and it’s war on terrorism, lead to the destruction of two of Iran’s neighbors. The Islamic Regime, faced with both international opposition and opposition within it’s own borders, has become very weary and rising fear of it’s demise is higher than it has ever been. Many see the hardliner, Ahmadinejad, and the Regime’s strong and uncomprising demands for nuclear energy, or weapons rather, as very bold and strategic moves. However, these demands are simply the result of the Regime’s Last Stand. Nuclear weapons is viewed as the Regime’s last opportunity to secure it’s existence and acceptance by both the opposition in Iran and the international community. This opportunity must be fulfilled before one of the two rid the people in Iran of this Regime that oppresses them.

May 31, 2006

Tiff between Government of Balochistan in Exile and BBC

LETTER FROM BBC:

Dear Mr. Khan Baloch,

While you are free to link or refer to a BBC article about your blog,could you please not use the BBC logo with any of your own graphics. You would agree it gives an impresson as if the BBC Urdu logo and your flagwere part of the same image.

I would be grateful if you made the necessary change.

best
waheed mirza

http://www.bbc.co.uk/



RESPONSE FROM GOB(EXILE):

Dear Mr. Mirza,

Thank you for your email. We value your concerns, but we don't believe that the image used on our blog gives an impression as if the BBC Urdu service graphics and our flag were part of the same image. We trust that our readers have enough common sense and intelligence to decipher the image, and not err in believing that BBC and GOB(Exile) have joined forces to wage a "War of Words" against Pakistan.

You would agree that Ms. Ayesha Tanzeem's article is critical of GOB's credentials. So, any reference that we make or offer any web links on our blog to Ms. Tanzeem's article or BBC is definitely harming our struggle for Baloch freedom, and not benefiting us. It's clear from our action that we are not profiting by using graphics that refer to BBC nor are we smearing BBC's credibility.

Also, you know very well that a blog is not a product for sale at a supermarket that requires fancy packaging and a brand name. It's simply a piece of writing that the reader must read to get any utility from it.

Therefore, using a graphic image that depicts BBC is not going to affect
the quality of the writing nor is it going to drive any additional traffic to our blog. The fact is that the title of our blog article, "Ayesha Tanzeem, BBC Correspondent in New York, Interviews Mir Azaad Khan Baloch" is what shows up on search engines and drives traffic to our blog.

A learned person like you should be least bothered by such frivolous issues dealing with graphics. It would be more appropriate if you had taken the time to criticize our translation of Ms. Tanzeem's article.

But, since you didn't find any problem with the real issue, we consider
this matter closed.


Sincerely,

Mir Azaad Khan Baloch
General Secretary
The Government of Balochistan in Exile


Mir Azaad Khan Baloch
General Secretary
The Government of Balochistan in Exile
http://governmentofbalochistan.blogspot.com

LOK PARITRAN IN BANGALORE : Its stand on Reservation

Lok Paritran has arrived in Bangalore to kick off its nationwide expansion campaign. The national working committee of Lok Paritran held a press conference yesterday to announce their arrival in Bangalore to set up their Karnataka headquarters in Bangalore. This is the first step of their national drive to set up offices in all the states.



The national working committee candidly fielded numerous questions from the attendant press persons. The dominant issue was of course the issue of reservation in higher education institutions. Chandrashekar, the national general secretary elucidate the position of the party on reservation. “It is clear from our ideology that we are against reservation as a concept. It has been clear from the beginning that practically the only driving force behind the reservation policy in our country is vote bank politics and not the intention to empower and uplift the oppressed and downtrodden sections of society. Reservation only propagates the caste system that it claims to work against. It promotes differences in society and does not help the truly needy and deserving persons. Apart from propagating the caste system, it results in creating an upper class amongst certain castes who then continue to use the system only for their benefit. If the truly needy and oppressed persons have to be uplifted, then reservation is not the way.



To the people that are benefited by this policy, the president said, “As a group you might be benefited by this policy but ultimately it’s not going the serve the purpose it claims to serve. The protection of person should only be taken to a limit. At some point you have to come out and face the world the way it is with courage and dignity. Even inside the groups the real needy are only to be neglected due to very setting that justifies the existence of this policy. That is that the system CAN NOT ensure justice at individual level. It’s only going to create the same setting inside the group that exists right now in the society. Do not think of this as any real benefit.”



He further explained “Even if we assume this to be a tool of justice, it bears the traits of colonial system. Treating an individual as individual was not possible long back due to very thin control of centralized system. In such policies individual is not treated as individual by the system, but as part of some group, and the whole society is taken as aggregate of such groups. This always leaves or creates fault lines in a society, or exposes and intensifies them. The rise of caste based social groups in recent years is a glaring example of this. Instead of going by the reservation policy the government should reach out to the people in the entire depth to ensure justice and equality.”



“We are aware that in many parts of the country, people are being oppressed solely on the basis of caste. As per our Ideology, it is essential that the system works efficiently in prosecuting and punishing the persons involved in such activities. This will result in the rooting out of such and other discriminative activities and establishment of social justice.”



Ajit Shukla, the national treasurer added, “Reservations are a challenge to a person’s dignity.” Addressing the issue of reservation for women he said “They form 50% of the population in the country. Instead of taking a freebie of 33% reservation, we ask them that are all of them, to come out in large numbers, stand for elections and take their rightful place in the administration of the country.”



“As far as students are concerned, we say that this is a matter that needs to be handled in a calm and professional manner, not only for the benefit of the valuable student community, but also for making India the great nation that it once was. This party has been formed to courageously and openly handle issues like this, without being influenced by thoughts of personal gain and vote bank politics. Lok Paritran is behind the student community like a rock and will protect the interests of the students”, added Tanmay.



The message to the people he said “There are many wrong decisions being taken at the highest levels of government. Opposing or even successfully nullifying such decisions will not help much since the structure itself is flawed. It is bound to make such divisive decision again and again and divide the populace to the point that any successful opposition will become impossible due to the fragmentation of society. The preliminary signs of this end have already started appearing and the current reservation issue is the blatant example of this. It is time for us to get united not only to oppose a certain decision but to make sustained and structured efforts to correct the system.”



The party is organizing a public meeting at the hall on to meet members of the public and create awareness of the policies and ideology of the party. Interested persons may contact the Party on

Iranian Intelligence Psychological war against the Iranian Resistance

The Iranian regime is beset at present by a sharp rise in anti-government protests inside the country and growing regional and international isolation over its export of terrorism and nuclear ambitions. The ruling theocracy’s top officials openly blame the main Iranian opposition party, the People’s Mojahedin of Iran (PMOI), as being the cause of many of the problems facing their regime. Here are a few examples:


A joint meeting of senior officials of the judiciary and intelligence agencies in Tehran took place to find ways of dealing with the serious crises facing the Islamic Republic. Jamal Shafii, Deputy Minister of Intelligence and Security, presented the assessment of the MOIS (Iran’s notorious secret police – ed.) about the nuclear issue, the situation in Iraq, and the state of the Mojahedin-e Khalq (PMOI), and undlerlined the importance of coordination between the judiciary and the intelligence agencies in the current state of the country. (semi-official Fars News Agency, April 13, 2005)

In separate meetings with the foreign ministers of Denmark, Belgium and France, Hassan Rowhani, Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator and secretary of the Supreme National Security Council, called on their governments to crack down further on the Mojahedin (PMOI). In an interview with the Financial Times, Rowhani addressed a similar request to the U.S. administration and said that this was a condition for improving ties with Washington. (News agencies, Financial Times, April 19, 2005)


Mullah Ali Younessi

The Iranian regime blames the PMOI for antigovernment uprisings in different parts of the country. The most recent example was the week-long uprising in the southwestern province of Khuzistan, in which some 70 protesters were killed by government forces. In the official counter-demonstration in the city of Ahwaz, the PMOI was condemned for its role. In its editorial, the official daily Jomhouri Islami wrote, “The mischievous activities of the [PMOI] in the current disturbances in Khuzistan must be brought to light.” (Jomhouri Islami).

After failure to silence the Iranian people's resistance by military confrontation, suppression, and bombing for 24 years, Iranian regime engaged in a psychological war and disinformation campaign to discredit the Iranian Resistance. The mullahs' regime plans to pave the way for trade relations with foreign countries and suppression of the resistance by defacing the opposition. In the absence of a legitimate opposition, there is no obstacle for dealing with the dictators.

However, in the past couple of years after the regime was not successful in cracking the resistance in Ashraf city, also in France their conspiracy to dismantle the Iranian Resistance failed, they have hyped up their demonizing campaign.
Mullah Ali Younessi, who heads the Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS), Iran’s dreaded secret police, told the state-run television on March 15: “I gave instructions to my deputy today to inform the world opinion about the crimes of this organization [PMOI].”

The MOIS instructed its operatives in several European countries to hold several gatherings in Paris and in the area around the residence of Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, the President-elect of the coalition National Council of Resistance of Iran, at the end of March. Several agents were also sent to France from Iran for the same purpose.

MOIS officials hope to tar the Iranian Resistance’s image abroad through such activities. The Iranian secret police used one of its agents in Europe, Karim Haggi, as its point man in this campaign. Haggi identifies himself as “a former member of the PMOI”. Haggi, who lives in Holland, has been working for MOIS since 1995 and was exposed by a senior MOIS operative in Europe, Jamshid Tafrishi, who defected in the year 2000. The Dutch security service interrogated Haggi in that year after discovering his ties to Iranian intelligence officers in the Iranian embassy in the Hague. Since then, Haggi has been meeting his MOIS control officers in Turkey, Malaysia and Singapore.

In recent years, as political and commercial ties between Tehran and Paris have grown and France has become, in the words of a top Iranian official, “the number one ally of the Islamic Republic in Europe”, MOIS has been developing strong ties with the French secret service, DST. The French journal, Le Canard Enchainé, reported in January that MOIS chief Ali Younessi had paid a secret visit to Paris for talks with French officials.

Unfortunately, the close cooperation between MOIS and the French agency have led to joint activities against the Iranian Resistance. MOIS agents such as Haggi have been used extensively by the French secret service to prop up a case against the NCRI, particularly after a two-year investigation into the Iranian Resistance did not yield a shred of evidence and turned into a fiasco, as it became clear that it was instigated by secret deals between Paris and Tehran.
It is not surprising, therefore, that the MOIS agents who came to Paris on Wednesday, March 30, to hold a gathering in Place Trocadero and plan to hold a gathering on Friday near the residence of Maryam Rajavi have enjoyed the full cooperation of the French authorities. They were allowed to hold their rally in Paris in the very same square that the Iranian exile communities wanted to demonstrate on February 10, but were banned by the French government. The question is, why did the French government ban a demonstration by tens of thousands of Iranians in Place Trocadero on February 10, when the objective was to protest against human rights violation in Iran, but allowed several dozen agents of mullahs’ secret police demonstrate against the Iranian Resistance in the same square?

The French government’s green light to these individuals to hold their gatherings, even though European security services have been aware that Karim Haggi and his associates work for the mullahs’ secret police, surprised and dismayed many political personalities and human rights activists in France, including Yves Bonnet, former head of the French counter-terrorism agency, Moloud Aounit, secretary general of the anti-racist movement MRAP, France’ largest non-governmental organization, Senator Jean-Pierre Michel, Pierre Bercis, president of the human rights organization Nouveaux Droits de l’Homme, and Bishop Jacques Gaillot, a renowned philanthropist. These personalities publicly denounced this position of the French government at a rally in Paris on April 5.

Furthermore, allowing the Iranian regime’s intelligence agents into France was in breach of a European Union Council of Ministers decision dated April 29, 1997, in which the EU foreign ministers agreed on “excluding Iranian intelligence personnel from European Union Member States”.

The Iranian secret service (MOIS) has carried out dozens of assassination of Iranian dissidents, including members of the NCRI, in European countries, such as France, Switzerland, Italy, Germany, Sweden, Norway, Austria, Britain, Turkey, and so on. There is grave concern that this latest action is being used by MOIS to pave the way for further terrorist attacks on Iranian dissidents in France.

We take a deeper look at the huge machinery of the Iranian regime for waging a brutal war on its opponents; a war that involves propaganda, assassinations, and every weapon in the armory of Iran’s dreaded secret police to eliminate the opposition to the ayatollahs’ regime.
European intelligence service's reports on mullahs Ministry of Intelligence and Security(MOIS) activities

The mullahs' regime's campaign against the Iranian opposition abroad is an issue well known to western intelligence communities. According to the western intelligence reports the main purposes of mullahs' intelligence activities abroad is to collect information about the opposition and harm the reputation of the National Council of Resistance of Iran and the Iranian Mojahedin. Following are a few examples:




Germany:
Bfv, The German security agency, the Office for the Protection of the Constitution
2002 - annual report (excerpts)


"The exiled opposition in Germany is still in the core of the surveillance activity of Iran's secret service, MOIS… MOIS, at present, is apparently focusing on defusing the opposition groups and their political activity. In this respect MOIS resorts to leading and financing propaganda against the opposition including those voiced by previous opponents of the regime. Like previous years Iran's secret service tries to enlist active or ex- members of opposition groups. This, in many instances, is taking place with intimidation of them or their families who are living in Iran."

Bfv, The German security agency, the Office for the Protection of the Constitution
2000 - annual report (excerpts):
"The Iranian opposition in exile in Germany is in the core of the surveillance activities of MOIS. Various organizations and groups … are systematically under surveillance and scrutiny of this service. Yet the principal target is the most active and the most militarized opposition group… the PMOI and its political wing the NCRI who is working in an international level.
MOIS has apparently concentrated its efforts on defusing opposition groups and their political activities. In this respect MOIS resorts to leading and financing propaganda against NCRI including those voiced by previous opponents of the regime.
As in previous years the Iranian secret service tries to recruit active or ex-members of the opposition."
"… Regarding the suggestions about recruiting new members put forward by the MOIS branch in the embassy in Berlin, the MOIS center in Tehran will make the final decision. The more lenient travel conditions between Germany and Iran provide fine facilities for MOIS to contact and recruit new agents."

Bfv, The German security agency, the Office for the Protection of the Constitution
1999 - annual report (excerpts):
"The principal objective of the Iranian secret service is still to fight the Iranian oppositionists. … the People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI) and its political wing, the NCRI, are still at the top of the Intelligence Ministry's activities. To grapple against the activities of the opposition in exile, Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS) has established various cultural associations. These are cover agencies that work for MOIS and the Iranian regime. Other than this, MOIS tries to publish various publications, some in the name of those who introduce themselves as ex-members of the PMOI, in order to persuade the reader to retract from the organization.
For the purpose of cracking this organization, MOIS even encourages the supporters of PMOI or other Iranians to go to Iran to visit their families or to stay there. Then MOIS will talk to them directly and sometimes, with offering bribe or intimidating them or their families in Iran, will ask them to cooperate with the secret service and give the necessary information to this ministry."

Bfv, The German security agency, the Office for the Protection of the Constitution
1997 - annual report (excerpts):
"One of the main tasks of the Iranian secret service is to keep an eye on Iranians living in Germany who oppose the regime. Its top priority is to keep surveillance on the People's Mojahedin of Iran and their political arm, the National Council of Resistance."



Holland:
BVD - Dutch Interior Security Service
2001 - annual report (excerpts):
"Including in the duties of MOIS is the tracing and recognition of persons who have contacts with the opposition groups abroad. Supporters of the most important group i.e. Mojahedin-e Khalgh, are more then anyone else, and particularly, subject of attention of Iran's secret service. The Ministry of Intelligence tries to collect as much information about this organization as possible through "ex-members of the Mojahedin". Also, the agents of MOIS are instructed to distribute negative information about PMOI and its members. In this way, they attempt to weaken the organization and, in order to end their social and political movements, strive to portray a satanic view of the Mojahedin in host countries.

BVD - Dutch Interior Security Service
2000 - annual report (excerpts):
"… Iranian statesmen act harshly against the opposition groups. Most of their attention is directed towards ex-supporters of PMOI."

"Iran's secret service administers its tasks not only under cover of usual diplomatic means but also increasingly from inside of Iran. In this respect, they use secret service officers and those living abroad. These agents must attack and harm the Iranian opposition instantly."


BVD - Dutch Interior Security Service
1998 - annual report (excerpts):
"Still we see that Iranian secret service organizations are active in The Netherlands. The Iranian agents are determined to find members of opposition groups in order to destabilize their organizations. Especially considered are the present as well as past members of People's Mojahedin. Iran's secret service uses intimidation to obtain Iranians' cooperation."

"It has been observed that, in the past period, the control of Iran's secret forces has been shifted to inside of Iran. Contacts are increasingly being made directly from Tehran and/or by secret service officers who introduce themselves as, for example, businessmen." In the succeeding year BVD reported: "Mojahedin-e Khalgh (PMOI), Iran's most important opposition organization has representative in The Netherlands…in the west Mohjahedin's activities are limited to arranging demonstrations and providing written and oral information."

"… Iranian officials are still confronting the opposition group with severity. An important job of Iran's secret service organizations is tracing and enlisting the opposition members abroad, especially past and present members of MEK (PMOI)."

"Iran's secret activities are usually administered from inside Iran. If necessary they use traveling secret agents. Iranians living in Europe are ordered to take actions that harm the opposition groups and destabilize them. One method used is printing and distribution of literature harming a particular opposition





European Police investigates Iran's secret agents

Early in the year 2000, after the escalation of activities of the agents of MOIS in various western countries, the police in these countries interviewed many of them and warned them against their relations with the mullahs’ Ministry of Intelligence. At the same time Karim Haghi issued a statement under the name of a society called "Peyvand" (an association established by agents of Ministry of Intelligence in The Netherlands) excerpts of which are as follows:

"Tuesday, 1 February 2000, an agent of Dutch secret service arrived at Karim Haghi’s place in Elst and …

after initial talks started reading names from a list in his hand which included Messrs:
1- Bani-Sadr
2- Alireza Nourizadeh
3- Bahman Niroomand
4- Khajeh-Nouri
5- Parviz Yaghoobi
6- Khanbaba Tehrani
7- Mehdi Khoshhal
8- Asghar Barzoo (Sweden)
9- Bahman Rastgoo (Germany)
10- Jaafar Baghalnejad (Norway)
11- Hassan Khalaj (Norway)
12- Aabed Haj Esmaili (England)
13- Hadi Shams Haeri (Holland)
14- Ghassem (Mohammad Tofigh Assadi, Holland)
15- Hassan Alijani (US)
16- Karim Haghi (Holland)
17- Mrs Nadereh Afshari (Germany)…

The secret agent added that there are more names that he cannot read for difficulty of pronunciation, and that’s why he stopped at that level. He also added that all of you are in contact with the Iranian regime and have formed a large network…
you must tell us who else is in contact with the regime…
we have enough information about your relations with the regime and know that your publication is being financed by the regime. We also know that Mr Shams Haeri is in touch with the regime and his contact with the Ministry of Intelligence is his brother. In this respect, too, he has traveled to Singapore once. Mr Parviz Yaghoobi, in France, is also in touch with the Iranian regime…
we want The Netherlands calm and do not like to have demonstrations and fighting here. It is best for you to abandon this sort of work at once and go after a normal life and think of your children’s future. We know that you hate the Mojahedin and they have caused you damage and ruined your life and future…

On the same day another secret agent was present at the parking lot near the workplace of Mrs Roya Roodsaz, Karim Haghi’s wife, and when she was about to get on her car he introduced himself and told her that he intends to talk to her. The core of the talks was about Karim Haghi’s activities and where the funds for Peyvand publication were coming from. The secret agent told her that Karim and his friends have formed a large network all of whom are in touch with the regime. Karim has once traveled to Cyprus…"
"At the same time two police cars followed another friend who had taken Mr Haj Esmaili to a train station. When Haj Esmaili gets on the train a person approaches him and starts asking similar questions."
"Simultaneously in three German cities, Cologne, Wiesbaden and Hannover, 6 people in groups of two approach Mehdi Khoshhal and Bahman Rastgoo and Mrs Naderh Afshari and ask about the type of communication and the circulation number of Peyvand publication, sources of its finance and … Also, in the first week of February, Messrs Shams Haeri and Mohammad Reza Eskandari and his wife Tahereh Khorrami were subjected to questions and answers. On February 9, two Dutch secret agents contacted Alireza Mohseni in The Netherlands and other than the names listed above ask him about his contacts with Fereydoon Gilani…"

NCRI’s Commission on Security and Counter-terrorism issued a statement on 15 February: "… in recent weeks, police and security bodies in The Netherlands, Germany, England, Sweden, Norway, Canada and … have engaged in calling on a number of regime’s agents and warning them."

"As the agents of the mullahs’ secret service have reported to their superiors in various embassies as well as to the headquarters in Tehran, police has undeniable evidence like photographs and tapes of conversations of these agents with their contacts in Ministry of Intelligence. Police, also with detailed information, is aware of secret travels of these agents to Iran and other neighboring countries as well as movements of a number of them to Far East countries, like Malaysia and Singapore, back and force, in order to meet the representatives of the Intelligence Ministry. Likewise they are aware of travels of a number of these agents to Europe and America in recent months and also know about the expenses paid by Iran’s secret service. In some cases even amount of weekly or monthly wage and method of payment is known to the police."

In addition, police and intelligence organizations have been informed that mullahs’ Intelligence Ministry has given instructions to such agents as to the framework in which they should respond to calls from the police and other legal agencies and how to defend themselves under the pretext of "democratic rights".

… Police is aware of Karim Haghi’s relations with the Intelligence Ministry since 1994 as well as his trips to Cyprus and Malaysia and meetings with representatives of mullahs’ Intelligence Ministry. And they know that he facilitated sending Bahador Khorrami to Iran. (Bahador is an 11-year-old child who was tricked away from his legal guardian in Canada, by a gang from the Intelligence Ministry, and transferred to The Netherlands where he was kept illegally for some time and then kidnapped by this criminal gang and taken to Iran in secret).

- According to security police in The Netherlands, Ministry of Intelligence, using Karim Haghi, has tried to establish a network of its agents. Police has numerous photographs of Karin Haghi with official and recognized elements of the Ministry. Distribution of the publication called Peyvand, fully paid for by Ministry of Intelligence, also relates to this matter.
According to police’s information, the Ministry of Intelligence is paying those involved in this publication, whose names the police has in a list.
Haghi has used an Iranian passport with the first name of Mahmood, with German visa, for his travels. The Ministry of Intelligence in many instances uses Karim Haghi’s wife (Roya Roodsaz) for contacting him. Haghi, also, sends his wife to Tehran to deliver "sensitive reports" and to take "special instruction" from his contacts. One of his contacts in the Ministry is a torturer called Naseri. He is one of the two who, after the arrest of Hamid Khorsand were commissioned to arrange his freedom in whatever way possible.
Police is aware that Shams Haeri, through a close relative in Iran, is in touch with the Ministry of Intelligence. He was sent to Singapore to visit a representative of the Ministry and is considered one of the active members of the network.

- Police is also aware of a trip by Haj Esmaili to Singapore in order to visit the representatives of the ministry as well as the dollars he received from them. Record of ignominious cooperation of Haj Esmaili with torturers of the mullahs’ intelligence and embassies in England and The Netherlands has been widely revealed, such that other agents of the mullah’s intelligence abroad are trying to cover it up. Haj Esmaili is the same agent that before printing, in Mojahed publication, of a letter with his own handwriting and signature in which he had explicitly acknowledged that, he only had studied up to second grade in high school, the mullahs’ Intelligence Ministry was trying to use him as a well established opponent of the regime with the title "Mr Engineer Abed Haj Esmaili, one of ex-leaders of the Mojahedin". Haj Esmaili, in several instances, has received thousands-dollar wages from the Intelligence Ministry. He went to The Netherlands some time ago and resided in Karim Haghi’s home. Simultaneously, Hassan Alijani also went to The Netherlands from the US and they held joint meetings with other agents and representatives of the Intelligence Ministry.

- In Germany too, the security police approached Ali Akbar (Bahman) Rastgoo, Mehdi Khoshhal and Nadereh Afshari, and told them of their knowledge of the details of their relations with the Ministry of Intelligence. For instance they had a question and answer session with Rastgoo about the funds he receives from the ministry for his cooperation with Peyvand publication.

- For preserving, protecting, and boosting the moral of its exposed agents who are in fierce fright and nervousness, the Intelligence Ministry has outlined the following instructions:
1. Promote your relations with each other and exchange your experiences in dealing with police and the type of questions they ask. So that when the police approached anyone, he/she would be able to answer.
2. Spread everywhere that this is a plot by the Mojahedin and their words trying to halt your activities.
3. Spread everywhere that this move by the police is an international plot in order to close our mouths.
4. Tell Nourizadeh, Bani-Sadr and Khanbaba Tehrani and others who have supported you in the past. They will help you.

It is interesting that each and every one of these agents are trying to repudiate police documents and deny their relations with mullahs’ Intelligence agencies.

Those who are actively engaged in the mullahs’ dirty campaign against the Mojahedin abroad are from several origins. The common denomination for all of them is that they are now working for the mullahs’ Intelligence Ministry.

Dissidents’ families targeted

The mullahs Ministry Of Intelligence Services(MOIS) routinely harasses and intimidates dissidents outside Iran by exerting pressure on their families inside the country. In most cases, the MOIS compels the families to contact their children abroad to urge them to discontinue their anti-regime activities and refrain from supporting the PMOI or the NCRI. In other cases, the MOIS has arrested families of exiled Iranians to force them to take a position against the Resistance or collaborate with the regime.

In one example in 1995, MOIS officials approached the parents of Mr. Abbas Minachi, a veteran PMOI member, and claimed he had been imprisoned by the organization. In a statement that was distributed as a United Nations documents at the Sub-commission for Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities at the time, Pax Christi wrote, “The Intelligence Ministry and an Iranian diplomat in Paris contacted Mr. Abbas Minachi’s family and told them that their son was imprisoned by the Mojahedin. By this, they made Mr. Minachi’s parents to write to Prof. Copithorne, Amnesty International and other human rights organizations and express their concern.”

Ultimately, Mr. Minachi came to Europe and contacted his father who was in the United States at the time to assure him of his well-being. He also met Prof. Copithorne in Geneva, unmasked the mullahs’ ploys, and later wrote a letter to human rights organizations concerning the MOIS propaganda.

The United Nations Sub-Commission for Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities issued a resolution on August 16, 1996, expressing profound concern over “increasing harassment and persecution of families of Iranian exiles living under Islamic Republic and pressures imposed by undercover government terrorists against Iranians residing abroad aiming to force them to cooperate with activities against dissidents in exile.”

The same year, the Washington Times wrote, “The organized campaign adjacent the exiles in Western Europe emanates from the Iranian Embassy in Bonn and is under the direction of a diplomat by the name of Vahidi Attain. Some 15,000 Iranian expatriates live in Germany....The Iranian Parliament ratified legislation two years ago legalizing punitive actions of overseas dissidents ‘who conspire against Islam.’ ”

Since the war in Iraq in 2003, the MOIS has stepped up its harassment of PMOI members’ relatives in Iran. It has forced a number of PMOI families, especially elderly parents, to demonstrate outside embassies in Tehran, such as the Swiss embassy (U.S. Interest Section), the British embassy, the United Nations Development Office, etc. These actions were intended to propagate the notion that PMOI members were being held in Iraq against their will and must be returned to Iran.

The MOIS has set up a fake association, the so-called ‘Salvation Association’ (Nejat)to ostensibly help the families and promised them that they could see their children. Through Nejat, the MOIS tried to send PMOI relatives to Camp Ashraf in Iraq as a ploy to woo PMOI members to return to Iran. On several occasions, these families were brought to Iraq by bus, and Iranian embassy employees handed the families placards with anti-Mojahedin slogans in Arabic and English and took them to Camp Ashraf. A camera crew from Iran’s state-run television was accompanying the families on each occasion.

Once informed by the PMOI representatives that they would welcome such visits, the families met privately with their loved ones and exposed the MOIS plot to use them as propaganda pawns against the PMOI.

The PMOI issued several statements since then and declared its readiness to make the necessary arrangements for these families to meet their children. It also emphasized that the gates of PMOI camps were open to the families and they could meet their relatives and children without any hindrance. Subsequently, the families stayed at Camp Ashraf for several days and met their relatives. Throughout the years 2003, 2004, and 2005 tens of thousands of Iranians, many of them PMOI members’ relatives, came from Iran and visited their loved ones in Ashraf.


The clerical regime's disinformation agencies
The clerical regime has invested greatly on disinformation campaigns and demonizing strategies against the Iranian Resistance and set up an elaborate apparatus to implement it. The Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS), the ICCO, the Foreign and Islamic Guidance ministries and the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) are all involved in psychological warfare against the PMOI.

The clerical regime’s propaganda campaign against its opponents was originally modeled on the activities and modus operandi of the former Soviet KGB’s disinformation department. Foreign instructors who trained Iranian operatives in “psychological warfare” and propaganda techniques in the early 1980s were mainly from the Eastern bloc countries. Many Revolutionary Guards and Intelligence Ministry officers who rose to prominence in the latter half of the 1990s as journalists, editors or politicians, were among the first generation of trainees in these special courses.

Iran’s convoluted propaganda machine conducts complex disinformation operations that may seem incidental or spontaneous to an unsuspecting mind: identical reports appear simultaneously in second- or third-rate European or American tabloids on alleged involvement of the PMOI in the suppression of Iraqi Kurds and Shiites; a few “asylum-seekers” emerge from nowhere to claim that they were mistreated by the PMOI many years ago; state-run newspapers in Iran report that the [former] Iraqi regime is hiding its weapons of mass destruction in PMOI camps.

In the absence of reliable information on how such propaganda is being disseminated by the clerical regime’s agencies, one may rightly assume that both sides to this conflict have vested interests in making these claims and counter-claims. The mullahs’ “target audience” is sometimes affected by the propaganda and most of the times perplexed or confused. Either outcome is a win for the mullahs, for at least some shadow of doubt would be cast on their principal opposition group. Goebbels’ infamous “big lie” principle would seem to work for the mullahs.

The Resistance has responded to this propaganda blitz by relying on its extensive information-gathering network inside Iran to identify the agencies and officials involved in this psychological warfare and expose confidential documents and evidence relating to their activities.

The Supreme National Security Council (SNSC), chaired by President Mohammad Khatami, is the highest authority that coordinates this campaign. The council’s secretary, Hojjatol-Islam Hassan Rowhani, is a confidant of ex-president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, while Ali Rabii, a former MOIS deputy and a Khatami protégé, heads the SNSC’s executive secretariat. Supreme Leader Khamenei approves the council’s important decisions.

The mullahs’ extensive propaganda against the PMOI began from the very first day they assumed power. But their “psychological warfare” operations swung into action after the 1991 [Persian] Gulf war against Iraq. In those years, the mullahs tried to take advantage of the post-conflict mayhem in the region to finish off their main opponents, the PMOI. The MOIS sharply expanded its operations to achieve this objective. Tehran pumped up more anti-Mojahedin propaganda, while its hit squads stepped up the assassination of dissidents abroad. From 1990 to 1993, MOIS hit squads targeted prominent opposition figures in Geneva, Rome, Karachi, Istanbul, Paris, Berlin, Dubai, Oslo, Stockholm and Baghdad. At the same time, the MOIS recruited a number of PMOI defectors in Europe to enhance its anti-Mojahedin misinformation campaign.
The MOIS remained very active against Iranian dissidents in Europe throughout the 1990s and was described in successive annual reports by the U.S. State Department on global terrorism as “the most active state sponsor of terrorism” in the world. A top Iranian official acknowledged that the MOIS had carried out “hundreds of attacks” on the PMOI in Iraq alone while Saeed Emami was the MOIS deputy minister.
In March 1996, the German Federal Prosecutor issued an international arrest warrant for then-Iranian intelligence Minister Ali Fallahian for having ordered the assassination of four Iranian dissidents at the Mykonos, a Greek restaurant in Berlin, on September 17, 1992. In final statements in late November 1996, German prosecutors charged Iranian Supreme Leader Khamenei and then-Iranian President Rafsanjani with approving the operation. Guilty verdicts for four of the accused were announced in April 1997 and the court established that a Joint Committee for Special Operations made up of Khamenei, Rafsanjani, Intelligence Minister Ali Fallahian and Foreign Minister Ali-Akbar Velayati, was responsible for approving plans to assassinate Iranian dissidents abroad.
Iranian embassies were often the main hub of intelligence and terrorist activities against dissidents abroad. The international security organization, Global Security, reported: “One example of the coordinated efforts of Iranian intelligence is found in Iran's diplomatic mission in Bonn at Godesberger Allee 133-137, which is the headquarters of the Iranian intelligence services in Europe. Some 20 staff members work for the Ministry of Intelligence and Security, and representatives from other agencies also use the embassy's specially secured third floor, where six offices and a radio room are reserved for the agents. From the six-story building in the government district the services monitor the 100,000 Iranians living in Germany, harass undesirable opposition members, and attempt to procure technology in Germany for the production of nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons. In the German language area alone, there are as many as 100 firms allegedly under Iranian influence for the procurement of such sensitive technology. Other bases of operations include the consulates in Frankfurt and Hamburg, and the Imam-Ali Mosque in Hamburg, said to be the largest Muslim religious centre outside the Islamic world.”
The next major change in the activities of the Iranian intelligence abroad came in the wake of the tragic events of September 11, 2001, and the war in Afghanistan. At the time, the SNSC decided to exploit the new political circumstances and focus its international efforts on the PMOI to persuade other governments, particularly the European Union countries, to designate the PMOI and the National Council of Resistance of Iran as terrorist organizations. Tehran was attempting to kill two birds with one stone: deliver a political blow to the Iranian Resistance and divert global attention from its terrorist record.

As a diplomatic offensive got underway to seek further restrictions on PMOI activities in other countries, the clerical regime embarked on a new misinformation campaign. The MOIS summoned a number of its agents to Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and Tehran to brief and instruct them to intensify their activities against the PMOI. MOIS agents Karim Haggi, Mohammad-Reza Haggi, Ahmad Shams-Haeri and Mehdi Khoshhal were instructed to pass a series of false reports on the PMOI to police and security services in France, Germany, the Netherlands and Scandinavian countries.

The clerical regime also increased the number of publications and articles that sought to demonize the PMOI. To this end, the MOIS assembled a group of writers and analysts in Kayhan, the largest government-owned publishing house in Iran, run by Hossein Shariatmadari. Shariatmadari, a brigadier-general of the Revolutionary Guards and a close confidant of Khamenei, is a veteran interrogator, torturer and propagandist who has been a key player in the clerical regime’s disinformation operations since the 1980s.

The MOIS has also sent thousands of anti-Mojahedin letters from Iran to parliamentarians and officials in Europe. The letters, with different signatures but often identical texts and handwriting, accuse the PMOI of terrorism and murder of innocent civilians. They call on recipients to designate the PMOI as terrorist. In an article in Sweden’s daily Göteborg Posten on 19 January 2002, Cecilia Malmström, a Swedish member of the European Parliament, unveiled one example of MOIS schemes to influence parliamentarians.

Islamic Culture and Communications Organization
Parallel agencies involved in the export of terrorism and fundamentalism sustained a number of blows in several countries, prompting the regime to reorganize and consolidate them. In early 1995, Khamenei brought those agencies active in export of fundamentalism and anti-Mojahedin propaganda campaign outside Iran under one unified organization: The Islamic Culture and Communications Organization, ICCO. He appointed Iraqi-born cleric Mohammad Ali Taskhiri as the head of the ICCO. Khamenei himself heads ICCO’s Supreme Policymaking Council, which holds its meetings at his house.

The ICCO has five directorates - publications, communications, cultural logistics, research, administration and financial affairs - each of which has several subordinate departments. Cultural attachés in embassies abroad are linked to the ICCO’s communications directorate.

The ICCO has three sets of objectives:
1. Anti-Mojahedin activities, including recruitment of operatives among deserters from the ranks of the Resistance, pursuance of a psychological warfare, employing other opposition figures in anti-Mojahedin actions;
2. Penetration of Iranian exile communities abroad through Farsi-language radios and other means, recruitment of agents and encouraging Iranians to return to Iran and infiltrating Iranian associations and groups;
3. Exporting fundamentalism to other countries, including recruitment and organization of fundamentalist forces in Islamic nations, penetration of Muslim communities in Western countries for recruitment and incitement purposes, recruitment of Muslims, particularly Shiites, for terrorist hit squads.

During Khatami’s presidency, the ICCO stepped up the scope of its activities. Khatami appointed three cabinet ministers to ICCO’s Supreme Policymaking Council and increased the budget for this entity by 15 percent.

Cultural attachés, who are trained intelligence agents, play an important role in the export of fundamentalism. Often they act as “talent spotters,” reaching out to fundamentalist groups in their countries of assignment and identifying individuals to recruit. New recruits will ultimately be sent to Iran via third countries for ideological indoctrination and terrorist training.

Recruiting Agents

Those who are actively engaged in the mullahs’ dirty campaign against the Iranian Resistance abroad are from several origins. The common denomination for all of them is that they are now working for the mullahs’ Intelligence Ministry.

The first group consists of those who have been agents of the Intelligence Ministry or Qods Force of the Revolutionary Guards Corps and had gone to Iraq and western countries to infiltrate into the ranks of the Mojahedin, the National Liberation Army of Iran, and their supporters.

These infiltrators whose mission was revealed in Iraq, following the investigations, Mojahedin released these individuals and returned them to where they came from. The Intelligence Ministry dispatched some of these people on new missions abroad upon their return to Iran. This time they introduced themselves as former members of the Mojahedin who were subjected to torture and persecution and then forced back to Iran. They claim to have fled Iran and are applying for asylum in other countries. They pretend that they are being threatened by both Iran and the Mojahedin. Mohammad Hossein Sobhani, Farhad Javaheri-yar, Hassan Sadeqian, Edward Termadoyan are among them.

The second group are those who were at one time within the ranks of the Resistance and left the Resistance due to its hardship and subsequently were recruited by the Intelligence Ministry. The unabated struggle by the Mojahedin against two dictatorships has attracted hundreds of thousands as members and active supporters. According to the regime’s officials some half a million were recruited by the Mojahedin Organization in Iran in early 1980s.1 On the course of such a harsh struggle where 120,000 have been executed, some of the individuals do not have the tolerance to continue and depart from this course. This is the mechanism which is applied to any resistance movement to attract or detract, in particular when dealing with the most brutal dictatorship in contemporary era.

Over the years many people left the ranks of resistance to lead an ordinary life. The vast majority of these people remained as supporters of the resistance movement and continue backing within their capacity. Many of them have reacted to the Intelligence Ministry’s propaganda against the Mojahedin and have even published books in response to false information spread against the Mojahedin, in particular on the issue of mistreatment or discontent of former members. But some of them were recruited to the Intelligence Ministry by threats or enticement. Mercenaries like Karim Haqi, and Shams Haeri are among this group.

Elaborating on these people in the book entitled "Iran: State of Terror" published by the British Parliamentary Human Rights Group, Lord Eric Avebury wrote: "Another method is using the small number of defectors who had at one stage cooperated with opposition organizations and individuals. These persons, due to their low or non-existent motivation to continue the struggle and maintain their principles, allowed themselves to be bought by the regime at a later stage. Such people have so far provided the regime’s terrorists in Europe with the most extensive intelligence and political services. In addition to providing information on the assassination targets to the regime, they prepare the political grounds for the murders of the dissidents by spreading propaganda against the individuals or organizations they had previously cooperated with, defaming them and accusing them of being worse than the ruling regime."

Mullah Younesi, Khatami's present Minister of Intelligence and Security (MOIS) said on the issue: "we have infiltrators in all opposition organizations…, we use some of the Mojahedin turncoats to work against them". In an interview, as IRNA on August 2000 reported, he said, "… we have many informers particularly in Europe who give us everything we need to know about Mojahedin. We are now well aware of all their activities and potentials".

The third groups are those who have never been in the Mojahedin Organization. For example, a man by the name of Bahman Rastgou, residing in Germany, has been serving the mullahs Intelligence Ministry as "a former member of the Mojahedin" but he has never been even among the active members of the Mojahedin.

The forth group consists of some unfortunate and politically bankrupt individuals who have been living abroad for decades but now, for their living or for return to mullahs or in fear of terrorist acts of the regime, have opted to cooperation with the Intelligence Ministry against the Mojahedin.


Front associations for disseminating false propaganda against the Resistance

Forming cultural associations to disseminate false propaganda against the Iranian Resistance is another MOIS tactic. These associations are purported not to be in contact with the regime and in fact even criticize it. One such association is Damavand Cultural Association, which uses a Canadian address...

Others are Payvand Association in the Netherlands and Dena organization in Germany. Mahdis and Iran-Interlink websites are among other outlets set up by the MOIS to disseminate propaganda against the PMOI. All these associations and websites focus their propaganda against the PMOI while using the cover of independent or even anti-regime entities.

For example, Iran-Interlink website, run by a British convert, Anne Khodabandeh (Singleton), is entirely controlled by MOIS. Prior to setting up Iran-Interlink, she travelled to Iran and stayed there for a month. Iran-Interlink is closely connected with the Intelligence Ministry's branches in the Netherlands and Germany. One of the website's information sources is Dena organization in Germany.

In introducing itself, the website states, “our objective is to further expose the real nature of the Mojahedin and act as a pressure group... This site has been formed as an outlet for families and persons the status of whose friends and acquaintances as disaffected members and cadres of the People's Mojahedin Organization in Iraq are unsettled and whose lives are in danger...”

SOURCE : National Council of Resistance of Iran - Foreign Affairs Committee. B.O.I.