Friday Iran Talking Points

from LobeLog: News and Views Relevant to U.S.-Iran relations for January 15th, 2011:

National Review Online: The Foundation for Defense of Democracies’ Benjamin Weinthal blogs on the collapse of Lebanon’s government on Wednesday, warning that “the Iranian proxy Hezbollah” has shown “that the political Islamists rule the roost in Lebanese society.” Weinthal writes, “The Islamic Republic of Iran, Hezbollah’s chief sponsor, has been forced to reduce its supply of military and financial aid to the Islamic fanatics by 40 percent. Over the years, the Iranian regime has pumped roughly $1 billion in military aid into Hezbollah’s arsenal.” Weinthal concludes that the approval of $100 million in military aid for Lebanon could have been a mistake if Hezbollah somehow becomes the beneficiary of the military goods: “Plainly said, it is time that the U.S. discontinues military funds for Lebanon and redirect monies to pro–Lebanese democracy organizations.”

The Atlantic: Jeffrey Goldberg responds to a post by Reza Aslan in which Aslan suggests that Ahmadinejad’s comments that Israel should be “wiped from the map” has been mistranslated and does not imply that Israel, and its people, should be physically destroyed but that “existing political borders should be wiped from a literal map.” Goldberg responds, “Hmmm. So Israel should be replaced by Palestine, which is different than removing Israel from the map. Got it. What Ahmadinejad has been trying to say all along, then, is ‘Shabbat Shalom, Jews!.’” He then sarcastically offers to “clarify the record of the Holocaust-denying, eliminationist anti-Semitic Iranian president” before reprinting a list of Ahmadinejad’s comments about Israel and Jews.

Author: Eli Clifton

Visit for the latest news analysis and commentary from Inter Press News Service's Washington bureau chief Jim Lobe.

4 thoughts on “Friday Iran Talking Points”

  1. RE: "Over the years, the Iranian regime has pumped roughly $1 billion in military aid into Hezbollah’s arsenal.” – Weinthal
    SEE: "Iran steps in as demining work slows in Lebanon" ~ by Abigail Fielding-Smith, The National, 10/17/09

    (excerpts) NABATIYEH, SOUTH LEBANON // In a sun-bleached, breeze-block town just outside of Nabatiyeh in south Lebanon, a new-looking billboard has been erected. It announces the headquarters of a recently established non-governmental group called the Peace Generation Organisation for Demining (PGOD). In the corner of the billboard is a discreet representation of the Iranian flag. Although the organisation is Lebanese, the director of PGOD, Mahmoud Rahhal, confirmed that "most" of the group's funding comes from their partner organisation, ISOP, an Iranian demining company, which also provides supervision and training expertise.
    Iran, along with the Arab Gulf states, has played a conspicuous role in the reconstruction effort in south Lebanon following the 2006 war with Israel, and the Iranian flag is a common sight on rebuilt roads around the south. This appears to be the first time, however, that Iranian money has been involved in the effort to remove the estimated 1.4 million unexploded cluster bombs dropped by Israel in the last 72 hours of the conflict.
    …According to sources involved in the post-war reconstruction effort, Iran offered to assist with the ordnance removal efforts immediately after the war, but was discouraged from contributing by Lebanese authorities until a few months ago, when they signed a memorandum of understanding with PGOD allowing them to work in the field…


  2. Israeli propaganda and misinformation has no equal in the post-Goebbels era. They wrung years of juice from President Nasser's comment about throwing Israelis into the sea. Ahmadinezhad, quoting Ayatollah Khomeini years earlier, said "This occupationist regime should be erased from the pages of time" — nothing about Jews as a people, nothing about violence. The U.S. for over 40 years called for the destruction of Communism and much of the world urged an end to the apartheid regime in South African — the same regime to which Israel offered nuclear weapons.

    But then Goldberg is a veteran of an army that can boast to having blockaded Gaza for longer than the Nazis laid siege to Leningrad.

  3. Re: Dickerson 3870:

    Persian Gulf states, yes; Arab states of the Persian Gulf, yes; Gulf Arab states, ok; "Arab" Gulf, no.e!

  4. Eli, don't confuse the words "Iran" and "Iranian" with the word "regime". Use them appropriately. The people of Iran, are different from the regime. Unless of course you are sympathetic to the regime.

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