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MIDDLE EAST: Israel and Iran
Since the fall of Saddam Hussein, Israel dominates the Middle East, with Iran as the only significant opposition. The Bush administration is determined to neutralize it one way or another. Republican majority leader Tom Delay addressed the Israeli Knesset. It was a rip-roaring pro-Israel speech given by a young man who has a singularly uncomplicated mind. Presumably fellow Texan George Bush approved of his giving the speech, which was patently an attempt to get Jewish votes in the next US election. Since it was given in Jerusalem, the Arab world must have been well aware of it. It would be hard to think of a better way to mock the claim of the President Bush that the US is even-handed in the Israel-Palestine conflict.
Insight (8/4/03) devoted a feature article to Iran titled "Student Heroes Take on Mullahs". It is an account of rioting students commemorating the bloody student riots of July 9, 1999. A photograph showed students giving the clenched fist salute, so it is a little odd for a hard-line Republican news magazine to hail them in the headline as "heroes", The Iranian student rioters are about as pro-American as the rioters at UNAM (the National Autonomous University of Mexico), or student rioters anywhere around the world for that matter. Either the Bush planners are stupidly uninformed, or they do not mind so long as the Iran regime is destabilized. If there is another Iranian revolution, what type of regime would emerge? Probably more democratic than the present one, but not necessarily pro-American. One detail: Incitement to revolt comes from Los Angeles, where opposition leader Roozbeh Farahanipour of the Marzepor Gohar Party took refuge after he escaped from Iran. It is probable that his group is being supported by the US government, which could count on their friendship if they returned to Iran and entered active politics.
Ronald Hilton - 7/31/03