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Commentary: Iran's nuclear nightmare
By Arnaud de Borchgrave
UPI Editor at Large
WASHINGTON -- A U.S. and/or Israeli air strike against Iran's nuclear facilities before November conjures up a dead duck rather than a lame one at one end of Pennsylvania Avenue and at the other, key Congressional committees under the control of prominent liberals.
Charlie Rangel rewriting the tax code to penalize the rich and favor the disadvantaged? Barney Frank, John Conyers and Henry Waxman chairing key committees? America's NATO allies siding with Russia and China in disassociating themselves from President Bush's decision to defang Iran's nuclear ambitions? This is what moderate Republicans can see in their viewfinders if the decision were made to decapitate Iran's nuclear ambitions before November's Congressional elections.
The Spectrum, UT
By BRIAN PASSEY
Though St George resident Hughette Nordin lived in Iowa during the Cold War-era atomic testing at the Nevada Test Site, she decided after reading about a planned non-nuclear bomb blast at the site that she wanted to do something to stop history from repeating itself.
Nordin said she and her husband, John, who grew up in Carbon County during the testing, thought of their grandchildren's future as they began planning a protest of the 700-ton ammonium nitrate-fuel oil explosion. Downwinders - those who claim health problems related to above-ground atomic testing at the site during the 1950s and 1960s - and special interest groups have taken notice and Nordin now has an old-fashioned grassroots protest scheduled for Saturday morning at Bluff Street Park.
Salt Lake City, UT
Defense Department plans to detonate a 700-ton mixture of ammonium nitrate and fuel oil at the Nevada Test Site in late June should concern every Utahn.
The enormous blast, dubbed Divine Strake (not strike), is projected to send a debris cloud some 10,000 feet into the air.
Considering the debilitating downwind health problems caused by nuclear testing in Nevada a half century ago, a hefty dose of skepticism is warranted over the scheduled test. Indeed, the Defense Department ought not to go ahead with Divine Strake without credible assurances there'll be no adverse effect on residents in communities downwind from the test site.
With the Support of the Free Press and the "International Community"
US Aggression-Time Once Again: Target Iran
By EDWARD S. HERMAN and DAVID PETERSON, www.counterpunch.org
With the United States having initiated wars in violation of the UN Charter, and hence engaged in the "supreme international crime,"1 against Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, and Iraq in 1999, 2001, and 2003, one might have expected that its commencement of a fourth aggression only a few years later against Iran would arouse the UN, EU, other international institutions and NGOs, and even the supposedly moral and independent Free Press, to serious protest and counter-action, including referral to the UN Security Council under Chapter VII's "threat of peace" articles and support of possible diplomatic and economic sanctions. This has not happened, and in fact the Bush administration has successfully mobilized the UN, whose "primary responsibility" is the "maintenance of international peace and security," and the EU, as well as the Free Press, to facilitate its fourth attack.
By Hassan Rohani, Time.com
A nuclear weaponized Iran destabilizes the region, prompts a regional arms race, and wastes the scarce resources in the region. And taking account of U.S. nuclear arsenal and its policy of ensuring a strategic edge for Israel, an Iranian bomb will accord Iran no security dividends. There are also some Islamic and developmental reasons why Iran as an Islamic and developing state must not develop and use weapons of mass destruction.
By Ramzy Baroud, Antiwar.com
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice couldn't possibly have been more accurate when she accused Iran of "playing games" with the international community.
Rice was specifically referring to an announcement made April 30, by deputy head of the Iranian Atomic Energy Agency Muhammad Saeedi, that his country is willing to allow "snap inspections" by the UN nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency, on the condition that the UN Security Council is excluded from any involvement in inspecting Iran's nuclear-enrichment facilities.
By Larisa Alexandrovna, http://www.rawstory.com
Use of Iraq terror group bypassed Congress, sources say
Concern is building among the military and the intelligence community that the US may be preparing for a military strike on Iran, as military assets in key positions are approaching readiness, RAW STORY has learned.
According to military and intelligence sources, an air strike on Iran could be doable in June of this year, with military assets in key positions ready to go and a possible plan already on the table.
By David Swanson, http://www.opednews.com
A new poll conducted in Pennsylvania by Zogby International and commissioned by OpEdNews.com asked some of the questions the corporate media has failed to ask. The answers are surprising. One revelation is this: the single greatest predictor of an American's political views is whether she or he watches Fox News. READ MORE: http://tinyurl.com/sxwcz
Published on Wednesday, May 10, 2006 by the Deseret Morning News (Utah)
Activists are not claiming victory over delay of explosion
by Joe Bauman and Suzanne Struglinski
Activists opposing the Divine Strake explosion are not claiming victory because the federal government has delayed the enormous blast, which had been set for June 2 at the Nevada Test Site.
"They still don't get it," said Robert R. Hager, the Reno attorney whose legal filing prompted the government to say it was putting off the explosion until at least June 23. In his opinion, the National Nuclear Security Administration still wants to ignite 700 tons of conventional explosives.
Bid for U.N. resolution delayed; Rumsfeld openly questions quality of U.S. intelligence
Cox News Service
WASHINGTON — The Bush administration struggled Tuesday for a way forward in dealing with Iran’s nuclear program, with a U.S. bid for a U.N. Security Council resolution stalled and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld publicly questioning the quality of American intelligence about Iran.
At the U.N., Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice met resistance from Russia and China on a proposed resolution that would declare Iran’s nuclear program a threat to world security and demand that Tehran suspend its production of enriched uranium, a potential nuclear weapons fuel.
WASHINGTON - May 10 - Today more than 200 scholars, academics, commentators, and former U.S. government officials issued a strong condemnation of the threat of U.S. military action against Iran and called on the Bush administration to enter into face-to-face negotiations with the government in Tehran.
by Robert Koehler, http://www.opednews.com
Will residents of Las Vegas be seeing a mushroom cloud over their city next month?
As I write this, "Divine Strake," the big bang with the macabre and vaguely blasphemous name (the military-industrial complex is playing God again), has been postponed from June 2 to June 23, thanks to legal proceedings against the Defense Threat Reduction Agency and the National Nuclear Security Administration, related to unanswered environmental-impact questions. Maybe the delay will be enough of a wedge to allow the passionately bitter opponents of the blast - and they are legion - to build the necessary momentum to stop it altogether.
Cindy Sheehan to Lead Delivery of Petition to White House
Ray McGovern to Lead March to Sec. Rumsfeld's Home
Delivery of petition to White House opposing attack on Iran
When: 1-3 p.m., Thursday, May 18
Where: Lafayette Square Park, in front of White House, Washington, D.C.
March to Secretary of War Donald Rumsfeld's House
When: Departing at 3 p.m., Thursday, May 18
The Fellowship of Reconciliation
May 8 - 20, 2006
Despite the rise in tensions between the United States and Iran, and talk of sanctions or military intervention, the Fellowship of Reconciliation's second interfaith delegation departs tonight (May 8) for Iran on a mission of peace and friendshiip towards the Iranian people.
The delegation, which will spent 12 days in the country, is part of FOR's ongoing commitment to working for peace, justice, and the nonviolent resolution of conflict.
By Robert Gehrke, The Salt Lake Tribune
WASHINGTON - Sen. Orrin Hatch is pressing the Pentagon harder to back up its claims that a massive detonation at the Nevada Test Site, known as Divine Strake, will not spread contamination from Cold War nuclear tests.
The Utah senator was dissatisfied with assurances he received as a result of his earlier inquiry. He said the Defense Threat Reduction Agency's response failed to explain why the agency concluded the test would not throw contaminated material into the air, and didn't say how far tunnels used for past nuclear tests are from the Divine Strake test site.
By KEN RITTER, Associated Press
LAS VEGAS - A non-nuclear explosion expected to generate a mushroom cloud over the Nevada desert will be postponed at least three weeks, while a federal court reviews plans for the blast, test officials said Tuesday.
"The planned Divine Strake experiment will not be conducted earlier than June 23," said Cheri Abdelnour, spokeswoman for the Defense Threat Reduction Agency at Fort Belvoir, Va. The blast was originally scheduled for June 2.
Published on Tuesday, May 9, 2006 by TomPaine.com
by Shadi Hamid
The uproar and controversy over purported U.S. plans to attack Iran show no sign of dying down. While President George W. Bush assures us that talk of impending war is little more than “wild speculation,” Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice recently threatened to assemble a “coalition of the willing” against Iran outside the U.N. if the security council fails to take action. All this has convinced many Iranians that "the nuclear issue is just the latest stage in a struggle between Washington and Tehran dating back to the 1979 Islamic Revolution,” according to The Financial Times.
Published on Tuesday, May 9, 2006 by Inter Press Service
by Omid Memarian
BERKELEY, California - The United States is struggling with Iran's fundamentalist government on two fronts -- while U.S. diplomats are negotiating with other members of the U.N. Security Council to impose sanctions on Tehran, Washington has allocated 75 million dollars to inspire "regime change".
The money is to be spent on empowering civil society, providing supplemental requests, broadcasting into Iran, promoting democracy, offering scholarships and fellowships, and enhancing communication.
Ahmadinejad proposes 'new solutions'
In a press conference on Monday, Tony Blair stated that any consideration of a nuclear attack against Iran would be "absolutely absurd," and said the issue had no bearing on his decision to demote his foreign secretary. As reported in the China Daily, Blair said: "I don't know anybody who has even talked or contemplated the prospect of a nuclear strike in Iran and that would be absolutely absurd."
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has written President Bush an 18-page letter discussing religious values, history and international relations. Following is an unofficial translation from the original written in Farsi:
"Mr. George Bush, president of the United States of America
For some time now, I have been thinking, how one can justify the undeniable contradictions that exist in the international arena -- which are being constantly debated, especially in political forums and amongst university students. Many questions remain unanswered. Those have prompted me to discuss some of the contradictions and questions, in the hopes that it might bring about an opportunity to redress them.
Environmentalists, politicians see time as chance to probe risks
By Judy Fahys and Robert Gehrke
The Salt Lake Tribune
Red tape has snagged the federal government's plans next month for a massive explosion at the Nevada Test Site.
Court papers filed by Pentagon and U.S. Energy Department lawyers say the Divine Strake test will be delayed by three weeks.
"The proposed detonation of Divine Strake will take place no earlier than June 23," said Jay H. Horman, acting manager of the National Nuclear Security Administration's Nevada Test Site office, in a statement presented to the U.S. District Court in Las Vegas on Monday.
Adrian Arambulo, Reporter
KLASTV.com Las Vegas
Plans for a massive experimental explosion at the Nevada test site have been delayed. An energy department spokesperson says the earliest that "Operation: Divine Strake" would take place would be June 23.
Some concerned residents, who are worried about potential health hazards, want the explosion cancelled all together.
A woman, who wants to be known as Karen, is on a mission. She's worried about how a planned explosion at the Nevada Test Site might affect her health.
By: Associated Press -
TEHRAN, Iran -- Iran took a step on Friday toward establishing an oil market denominated in euros, a plan analysts described as highly unlikely to materialize but which in theory could have serious consequences for the U.S. economy.
Iranian state-run television said the country's oil ministry granted a license for the euro-denominated market, an idea first floated back in 2004, though just who would trade on it remains unclear.
Article: Between The Lines
Between the Lines Q&A
A weekly column featuring progressive viewpoints
on national and international issues
under-reported in mainstream media
for release May 7, 2006
Use of Tactical Nuclear Weapons in Iran Could Kill Hundreds of Thousands
Interview with Dr. Kurt Gottfried, chairman of the Union of Concerned Scientists, conducted by Scott Harris
Recognizing the dangers posed by nuclear weapons and calling on the President to engage in nonproliferation strategies designed to eliminate these weapons of mass destruction from United... (Introduced in House)
HRES 373 IH
H. RES. 373
Recognizing the dangers posed by nuclear weapons and calling on the President to engage in nonproliferation strategies designed to eliminate these weapons of mass destruction from United States and worldwide arsenals.
KBCI CBS 2
By Thanh Tan
EMMETT - U.S. Defense officials tell KBCI CBS 2 News today they still plan to detonate 700 tons of explosives south of Idaho next month at the Nevada Test Site.
The department says this is not a nuclear test, but Idahoans who live in Emmett say they're concerned the explosion could disturb some radioactive dust leftover from the Cold War-- and fly in the northern direction toward Gem County. Officials confirm several nuclear tests were conducted at least one mile away from the site where the June 2 explosion-- dubbed Divine Strake-- is scheduled to be tested.
Rice: Iran Letter Doesn't Resolve Standoff
By Anne Gearan / Associated Press
NEW YORK - Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice dismissed a letter that Iran's president sent to President Bush on Monday, saying the first direct communication from an Iranian leader in 27 years does not help resolve the standoff over Tehran's disputed nuclear program.
Iran's top nuclear negotiator called the surprise letter a new "diplomatic opening" between the two countries, but Rice said it was not.
Summary of Amendments Submitted by Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-OR) to H.R. 5122, the Fiscal Year 2007 Department of Defense Authorization Act
The DeFazio amendment would prohibit any funds authorized by the bill from being used to take military action against Iran except (1) pursuant to a declaration of war by Congress (2) in accordance with specific statutory authorization by Congress or (3) to repel an armed attack by Iran on the U.S. or our armed forces, to retaliate for such an attack or to forestall the direct and imminent threat of such an attack.
by Julie Rose
"Divine Strake" Could Send Radiation Downwind to Utah
(KCPW News) Should Southern Utah residents stay indoors and worry about radiation on June 2 -- the day federal officials plan to detonate 700 tons of explosives at the nuclear test site in Nevada? Congressman Jim Matheson says without more information, it's hard to know if Utahns will be in danger of downwind contamination. He's requested detailed analysis of the surface soil at the test site to determine if any radioactive material will be blown into the air during the blast. Without that information, Matheson says it's hard to know how dangerous the test will be.