cue the lightning bolts

the only question that matters: is it true?

Iran has signed the NPT. As a signatory to the NPT, Iran may rightfully, legally, use nuclear technology for peaceful energy purposes. Iran has submitted to and passed repeated IAEA inspections. The US intelligence community (NIE) does not consider Iran a nuclear threat. Israel refuses to sign the NPT. Israel has an estimated several hundred undeclared nuclear weapons. Russia and China have warned that an attack on Iran will have global consequences. That's the situation in a nutshell. Where to next, people? Where to?

Have I now become your enemy by telling you the truth? - Galatians 4:16

10.27.2009

top 10 reasons we know that power is shifting

1. Venezuela, Syria boost ties with bilateral accords

Venezuela and Syria cemented their ties on Monday as they signed five trade, agriculture and energy cooperation agreements, the Venezuelan Foreign Ministry said. Among the agreements signed by Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro and his Syrian counterpart, Walid Muallem, in Damascus was a deal to build a refinery that can treat 140,000 barrels of oil per day.


2. Iran dismisses Israeli threats: FM

TEHRAN, Oct. 26 (Xinhua) - Iran's Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki dismissed on Monday the aggressive remarks uttered by Israeli officials against Tehran, the semi-official Fars news agency reported.

Mottaki underlined that the "Zionist regime" does not dare to attack Iran as it lacks the required strength, capabilities and resources, the report said.

"We believe that the Zionist regime is in its weakest state now. Today this regime is experiencing the weakest condition in political, regional and international arenas," Mottaki told reporters in a media and press exhibition in Tehran.


3. UN inspectors finish inspecting Iran's second nuclear plant: official

TEHRAN, Oct. 26 (Xinhua) -- A top Iranian lawmaker said Monday that the team of inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) have finished their inspection of Iran's newly-disclosed uranium enrichment plant, local ISNA news agency reported.

"The inspectors of the agency have finished their job at Fordo (uranium enrichment plant)," Alaeddin Boroujerdi who heads Iranian parliament's national security and foreign policy commission was quoted as saying.


4. Bibi, Livni meet after months of severed ties to prepare for Livni's visit to Russia

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with opposition chairwoman Tzipi Livni on Monday, the first such meeting in months. Livni, who served as foreign minister during the Olmert administration, will visit Moscow on Tuesday at the invite of Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

The former foreign minister is expected to raise the matter of Iran's nuclear program during her talks with Lavrov. Livni met with Netanyahu to coordinate positions on the issue before departi
ng for Moscow. Livni will also meet with deputies in the Russian parliament as well as leaders of the Jewish community.

...
The opposition chief will request that the Russians oppose referral of the [Goldstone] report, which accuses Israel of war crimes during its military offensive last winter in Gaza, to the UN Security Council. Livni aides said on Monday that her trip to Russia was also coordinated with the current foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman.



5. French FM complains that Iran 'wasting time' on nuclear demands


Iran is "wasting time" as the west waits for it to deliver its response on a UN-brokered deal for overseas treatment of low-enriched uranium (LEU), French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner said Tuesday. "Iran is wasting time because now is the time for talking," Kouchner said on arrival in Luxembourg for a meeting of European Union foreign ministers. "One day, it will be too late," he added.


6. When in fact Iran to respond to nuclear deal in 2 days (IS THAT WASTING TIME OR WHAT?? - ed.)

TEHRAN - Iran will deliver its response to a UN-brokered deal for the supply of nuclear fuel to Tehran within two days, Fars news agency reported on Tuesday.

"An informed source told Fars that the Islamic Republic of Iran within the next two days will respond to the draft of providing fuel for the Tehran reactor," the report said.

Iran was to respond to the deal by Friday but delayed it until some time this week.


7. Iranian president hails Turkish support


TEHRAN - President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Tuesday welcomed visiting Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's defence of the Iranian nuclear programme.

Ahmadinejad, in a statement on the presidential website, said he "appreciates" Erdogan's stand on Iran's atomic programme and on Israel, the Middle East's sole nuclear-armed state.

"When an illicit regime possesses nuclear arms, one can not talk about depriving other nations from the peaceful nuclear programme," he said. "Your clear stance towards the Zionist regime had a positive effect in the world, especially the Islamic world, and I am sure that everyone was satisfied," Ahmadinejad added.


8. Joe Biden is set to stun

excerpts :

MOSCOW. (RIA Novosti political commentator Andrei Fedyashin) - On October 23, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden completed his tour of Eastern Europe, paying visits to Poland, Romania and the Czech Republic.

...

In all three capitals, Mr. Biden had to explain that the U.S. would abandon neither its defense commitments, including both through NATO obligations and bilateral agreements, nor the strong friendship with the three governments. Now there will just be a new political order in which Russia's interests hold more weight than under the Bush administration.

Judging by the recent visits of the 64-year-old Biden (he recently visited Tbilisi to calm down Saakashvili and then the Balkans), it seems that his mission is to provide comfort to the distressed. Before the presidential election, the former chairman of the Senate's Foreign Relations Committee was unanimously called the Democrats' leading foreign policy expert and a foreign policy guru. It must be noted that in the U.S., the notion of foreign policy expertise has a slightly different meaning than in Europe. To earn that title, an American foreign policy expert need only be able to distinguish European countries and world regions, pronounce their names, and have a basic understanding of the general nature of the global trends and regional issues.

Mr. Biden's foreign policy beliefs are defined as "liberal interventionism," but one can hardly call the senator's foreign policy positions consistent. Sometimes it is even hard to make out the difference between his foreign policy position and that of the Bush administration's, except for minor distinctions in details and timelines.

However, Mr. Biden is a master of persuasion, maybe too masterful. Each of Mr. Biden's speeches is a headache and puzzle for his staff. It would be okay if the senator were just a little too talkative, but the problem is that he enjoys talking for so long and in such detail that even in Congress he was called an "unguided missile" or someone who "lacks the filter." Mr. Biden's colleagues and aides become especially nervous when the senator starts his speeches with the phrase "I'll be brief," which usually means that he will diverge so significantly from the original point of the speech that he may even forget what exactly the original speech was about. This has happened with Mr. Biden more than once. He has sometimes talked such drivel that, having argued for a certain position at the beginning of the speech, he appeared an advocate of its exact opposite in the end.

"Joe often didn't know what he thought until he had to say it," noted American researcher Richard Cramer, who analyzed presidential candidates' psychological states during the 1988 election, when Mr. Biden unsuccessfully sought a Democratic nomination.

However, there are situations when Mr. Biden is brought into play, for instance to heal the wounds of upset allies.


9. Georgia - true home of Ashkenazi Jews - nominates Habsburg duchess as envoy to Germany

Tbilisi -- Ex-Soviet Georgia has nominated Gabriela Von Habsburg, a Tbilisi art professor and granddaughter of the last emperor of Austria, as its ambassador to Germany, the foreign ministry said Monday.

Von Habsburg, a 53-year-old member of the Habsburg-Lorraine dynasty also known as Archduchess Gabriela of Austria, was born in Luxembourg and is the daughter of Otto von Habsburg, the former crown prince of Austria.

...Von Habsburg has been teaching at the Academy of Arts in Tbilisi since 2001 and has Georgian citizenship. She is well-known as a sculptor of abstract stainless steel structures.

She has constructed a stone memorial in Tbilisi to the 2003 Rose Revolution that brought President Mikheil Saakashvili to power and participated in pro-Georgia protests during last year's conflict with Russia.

The Habsburgs ruled the Holy Roman Empire from 1438 to 1806, and later the Austro-Hungarian Empire from 1867 until its demise in 1918 at the end of World War I when it was allied with Germany.


10. Bildt's inaction breeds suspicion in Israel


Israel’s government remains surprised that Swedish foreign minister Carl Bildt has yet to reschedule a previously cancelled trip to Israel.

Custom dictates that the foreign minister of the country currently holding the rotating presidency of the European Union pay a visit to officials in Jerusalem.

Bildt had a visit scheduled to take place in September, but the trip was cancelled shortly before it was to take place.

While Bildt cited scheduling conflicts in announcing his decision to forego the September visit, there was speculation in the Israeli press that the Swedish foreign minister decided to skip his trip to avoid dealing with latent hostility following an article published in the Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet alleging that the Israeli army had harvested organs from dead Palestinians.

According to a high ranking official in Israel’s foreign ministry, the silence from Bildt regarding a new date for the visit has come as a surprise to officials in Jerusalem, who now suspect that the Swedish foreign minister may be sending a message to Israel.

“If he were a newcomer to diplomacy, it could be somewhat defensible. But Carl Bildt is a very intelligent and experienced man. That makes us think it’s more likely some sort of signal,” the Israeli foreign ministry source told the Dagens Nyheter (DN) newspaper.

Bildt spokesperson Irena Busic insisted, however, that Bildt intends to visit Israel before Sweden’s EU presidency ends at the end of the year, but she had no specifics regarding a possible date.

Relations between Sweden and Israel remain strained following the publishing of the Aftonbladet article about organ theft, with both Bildt and prime minister Fredrik Reinfeldt refusing to publicly condemn the story, despite repeated demands from Israel.

Both argue that speaking out against the article would violate free speech protections in Sweden’s constitution.


ayuh. i definitely think it's a signal. - ed.

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