Date: Feb 2, 1999 [ 0: 0: 0]

Subject: DNI-NEWS Digest - 31 Jan 1999 to 1 Feb 1999

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Subject: DNI-NEWS Digest - 31 Jan 1999 to 1 Feb 1999
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There are 8 messages totalling 535 lines in this issue.

Topics of the day:

1. MKO: Intelligence Ministry's headquarters in Iran pounded in a major
mortar attack in heart of Tehran
2. NEWS99 - Bourqani's Resignation "a catastrophe"
3. NEWS99 - Cleric Speaks on Freedom of Expression
4. NEWS99 - 'Aban' Weekly on the Recent Assassinations
5. NEWS99 - The Cost of 20th Anniversary Celebrations
6. NEWS99 - Dream That Turned Into Nightmare
7. Amir Entezam case
8. cleric on freedom of expression

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Date: Mon, 1 Feb 1999 18:28:09 +0100
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad.abdolian@RSA.ERICSSON.SE>
Subject: MKO: Intelligence Ministry's headquarters in Iran pounded in a major
mortar attack in heart of Tehran

Here is the statement from the People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran.
http://www.iran.mojahedin.org/
------------------------------------

- Intelligence Ministry's headquarters in Iran pounded in a major mortar
attack in heart of Tehran

The Mojahedin Command Headquarters reported that Mojahedin military units
launched a mortar attack today at 6.30 p.m local time on the main
headquarters of the mullahs' Intelligence Ministry in Tehran's Pasdaran
Avenue, in response to political killings in Iran and abroad.

In this major attack, carried out by Zahra Rajabi and Ali Moradi military
units, considerable damage was inflicted on the Intelligence Ministry
buildings which houses the dreaded organization's various departments.
Successive sounds of explosion were heard throughout the northern and eastern
neighborhoods of the capital.

Long convoys of ambulances and fire engines rushed to the scene while the
revolutionary Guards Corps and the State Security Force in the capital were
put on full alert. The area of the attack was sealed off and revolutionary
Guards patrols searched all vehicles and pedestrians.

The Mojahedin Command Headquarters in Iran said additional information would
be released in due course.

The mortar attack on the Intelligence Ministry Headquarters comes on the eve
of the clerical regime's ten-day celebrations commemorating the Iranian
Revolution, with Monday marking the anniversary of Khomeini's return to
Tehran. The mortar attack on the headquarters of the mullahs' Gestapo
disrupted the mullahs' political razzmatazz prepared by the mullahs to
celebrate the anniversary of their hijacking of the Iranian people's
revolution against the Shah's dictatorship.

Ms. Zahra Rajabi, a member of the Mojahedin's leadership council, and Ali
Moradi, a Mojahedin sympathizer, were assassinated on February 20, 1996, by
agents of the regime's Intelligence Ministry in Istanbul, Turkey. She was on
a humanitarian mission to aid Iranian refugees in Turkey.

Other crimes of the Intelligence Ministry in the past include: - the April
1990 assassination in Switzerland of Professor Kazem Rajavi, brother of
Iranian Resistance Leader Massoud Rajavi and representative of the National
Council of Resistance in Switzerland, - the March 1993 assassination of
Mohammad Hossein Naghdi, NCR's representative in Italy; - the May 1995
assassination in Iraq of Mojahedin members Effat Pourhaddad and Fereshteh
Esfandiari, and the July 1995 assassination of Ibrahim Salimi, Yar Ali
Gartabar, Hossien Sadidi, the June 1994 assassination of Ahmad Sadr Lahiji,
and the November 1997 slaying of Nosrat Bahou and Yahya Mohammadpour; - the
1992 kidnapping, mutilation and assassination of Mojahedin member Akbar
Ghorbani in Turkey; - the 1994 murder of three Christian leaders in Iran; -
the June 1994 bombing of the holy shrine of the eighth Shiite Imam; - the
setting up of terrorist networks throughout Europe, Latin America and Asia
and the assassination of Iranian dissidents such as the murder of four
Iranian Kurdish dissidents in Berlin, Germany (September 1992); - the arrest
and execution of political prisoners since 1984, particularly the massacre of
political prisoners in September 1988; - cruel and savage methods for torture
of resistant political prisoners; - setting up of safe houses for secret
torture and murder of opponents; - continuous harassment of families of the
Mojahedin and other victims of the regime; - controlling the offices,
schools, universities and factories, and arresting the regime's opponents and
suppressing acts of protest in these centers.

The clerical regime's Intelligence Ministry, headquartered in the same
building that housed the Shah's secret police (SAVAK) is intensely hated by
the people of Iran.

In the wake of the recent wave of murders of dissidents and writers in Iran,
Khamenei and Khatami both heaped praise on members and officials in charge of
the Intelligence Ministry, describing them as "the most loyal and honest
forces of the Islamic Revolution," "competent managers," and "valuable assets
of the nation."

Referring to the countless crimes of this repressive organ, Khamenei declared,
"Was it not for the efforts of this ministry, the Islamic Revolution would not
have survived."

People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran
January 31, 1999

------------------------------

Date: Tue, 2 Feb 1999 00:30:03 GMT
From: arash@MY-DEJANEWS.COM
Subject: NEWS99 - Bourqani's Resignation "a catastrophe"

Iran Daily (Journal of Islamic Republic News Agency)
February 2, 1999


Why did Bourqani resign?


Tehran - Deputy minister of culture and Islamic guidance
for press and propagation affairs, Ahmad Bourqani, resigned
from his post after 18 months in office.

The rumor of Bourqani's res-ignation began floating when
the press supervisory board revoked the daily Tous's print
license and the minister of culture and Islamic guidance,

Ataollah Mohajerani, in an interview with a Lebanese paper
defended the move.

At the time, Bourqani was accompanying President Khatami to
the US and many thought that he had resigned before the
trip.

This rumor became very strong when Mohajerani managed to
convince the majority of Majlis deputies that the ministry
should closely supervise the print media.

However, on Saturday evening, Bourqani's resigna-tion was
confirmed and his replacement was also appointed.

The Farsi daily Akhbar interviewed a number of jour-nalists
on the issue of Bourqani's resignation. Akbar Ganji of the
banned Rah-e Nou, said, "In Khatami's plan of reform, the
deputy culture and Islamic guidance minister for press and
propagation affairs is a strategic post. It was quite a
serious move to choose a deputy culture min-ister who
believed in freedom of expression and diversity among the
press corps, was opposed to censorship, and continually
defended the press rights. The net outcome was undesirable,
as there was a compromise made with the conservative
faction and grounds were thereby facili-tated for
Bourqani's resigna-tion.

He cited several reasons behind Bourqani's dismissal,
including his opposing the revoking of print licenses,
endorsing the formation of an active press guild,
supporting dealing with the print media's violation as per
the rule of law, defending diversity among the press corps
and his not participating in secret deals over the fate of
the press.

The editor-in-chief of the banned dailies Jameah and Tous,
Masha'llah Shamsolvaezin, characterized Bourqani's
resignation as a catastrophe.

"His absence at this key post, will mean serious harm to
the question of the press in this country. I believe that
the conflict between those who really understand the needs
of the society and those who only strive for short-term
interests led to Bourqani's resignation," he observed.

A member of the editorial board of the Farsi daily Sobh-e
Emrooz, Abbas Abdi, told the paper that Bourqani was the
point of strength for the ministry and he always stood up
for the print media's rights.

------------------------------

Date: Tue, 2 Feb 1999 00:32:08 GMT
From: arash@MY-DEJANEWS.COM
Subject: NEWS99 - Cleric Speaks on Freedom of Expression

Iran Daily (Journal of Islamic Republic News Agency)
February 2, 1999


FARSI MEDIA POLITICAL FOCUS


Asr-e Ma interviewed Hojjatoleslam Seyyed Mohammad Ali
Ayazi excerpts of which are given here.

Any school of thought that believes in and trusts its own
thoughts and ideas, will nec-essarily have to advocate
freedom of thought and speech. Conversely, those who do not
have faith in their thoughts and are fearful of being
attacked by their oppo-nents, oppose freedom. Such schools
of thought intend to limit people so that peo-ple do not
pinpoint their weaknesses.

Secondly Islam has emphasized knowl-edge. And knowledge can
only spread and be established if there is freedom and the
men of thoughts and letters are dealt with respectfully. On
the other hand, knowledge is not a one-sided relationship.
Amajor por-tion of knowledge owes its existence to the
clash among various thoughts and beliefs.

In the absence of freedom, people do not get to know about
each other's views and do not have the chance of evaluating
their own thoughts and ideas. Whereas friction among
different thoughts will clarify many things. Moreover,
curtailing of freedom of thought and speech will reduce
social understand-ing.

Preventing the clash of ideas and thoughts will limit the
power of thinking and lead to superficiality. This is
something that is very rampant in despotic societies and as
a result, the slightest doubt will cause confu-sion and
hesitancy.

Moreover, if beliefs and ideas are not crit-ically
evaluated they will not be corrected; leading to
superstition. Only critical evalu-ation of thoughts, ideas
and views will in a logical and reasonable manner pave the
way for eradication of probable mistakes.

------------------------------

Date: Tue, 2 Feb 1999 00:33:39 GMT
From: arash@MY-DEJANEWS.COM
Subject: NEWS99 - 'Aban' Weekly on the Recent Assassinations

Iran Daily (Journal of Islamic Republic News Agency)
February 2, 1999


FARSI MEDIA POLITICAL FOCUS


Aban featured an item titled 'Respecting Freedom'. The
weekly wrote: In the socio-political space of our
transitional society, many important phe-nomena and events
take place. Some of them are bitter because opponents of
socio-politi-cal change resort to anything to reach their
aims and objectives. For example they have been resorting
to violence, as well as other unlawful behavior and
creating tension in the society.

But the results of some events have also been sweet, in the
sense that the society has been moving towards reforms.
Although the society may have to pay a heavy price, like
the assassination of its cultural personalities, in order
to achieve the needed reforms, how-ever, when one observes
the acceleration of socio-political development, new rays
of hope begin to shine.

One of the characteristics of our transition-al society is
the speed at which socio-politi-cal events take place. The
reformist faction will have to endeavor to maintain the
reforms and reduce the damage caused by the monop-olists to
the minimum. At present the reformists are looking for a
change in the cur-rent situation and the conservatives want
to stabilize it.

Under these circumstances, there is a great potential that
a lot of tension will develop. And the advocates of reforms
in the universi- ties, schools as well as various other
groups will have to resort to judicial and logical behavior
in order to achieve their objectives.

Under current conditions, one concern is that the recent
assassinations of the writers and political activists may
gradually sink into oblivion through the hands of the
judiciary and security organizations. Therefore it is
possible that the reformist groups may get involved in less
important issues, as a result of which the concern is that
such heinous crimes may be repeated.

The judiciary and security organizations are under the
influence of the conservatives. The prominent personalities
of this faction, as well as their print media, have either
called these assassinations foreign motivated or accused
the non-existent Mehdi Hashemi group.

Recently, in a surprising move, the editorial of Resalat
looked for the source of these assassinations in the
reformists' print media.

It seems extensive efforts are under way to desensitize
public opinion and shove the whole thing into the category
of enemy hatched conspiracies.

What is important is that things are different now and it
is not possible to divert public opinion by speeches and
articles. Thus the judiciary and security set ups will have
to be more realistic and find out the hidden hands behind
these assassinations.

------------------------------

Date: Tue, 2 Feb 1999 00:34:56 GMT
From: arash@MY-DEJANEWS.COM
Subject: NEWS99 - The Cost of 20th Anniversary Celebrations

Iran Daily (Journal of Islamic Republic News Agency)
February 1, 1999


Perspective


Penny Wise, Pound Foolish!

By Hojjatoleslam Hojjati Kermani

According to the news, the Organization of Islamic Culture
and Communication (OICC) has organized various programs to
commemorate the 20th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution
of Iran.

About 200 artists are travelling abroad to participate in
cultural events. Prominent Iranian figures are touring some
20 foreign coun-tries to deliver lectures on the Islamic
Revolution, its past, present and future. Some 50
well-known figures from 30 countries are scheduled to
already be in to Iran to take part in the nationwide
ceremonies.

What follows will not do much in changing the decisions on
con-vention of the above events, as they are already being
executed.

The question is who shall pay the large bill covering the
heavy expenses of the said events?

It is hoped that OICC and its respected chief have duly
calculated the costs amid the current economic situation of
the country. These events are taking place amidst the
repeated calls by the leader of the Islamic Revolution and
Friday prayer leaders, that state organizations and the
nation should observe frugality and save the country's
assets.

Just imagine the gigantic expenses incurred by the annual
cere-monies launched to mark the revolution's anniversary.
What are their cultural or political significance in terms
of the money they devour?

Have they or any similar program managed to arrive at what
a single televised message by President Mohammad Khatami to
the American citizens or his address before the UN General
Assembly did?

Let's sit and calculate the money needed to help the wheel
of these projects turn round and round. This will help the
average taxpayer can understand the effects this mony has
on upholding the revolution's image abroad, defusing the
enemies' plots, lifting misunderstandings and attracting
the world's attention to the Islamic Revolution.

Once justified, let's sit again and think of the 40-million
population of the young Iranian generation which is still
unemployed, unable to marry for financial reasons and
homeless.

Then add to the list the violent atmosphere of the society
which is entangled in confusion following the recent spate
of murders.

The current circumstances remind us of the landlord whose
house lacked strong foundations while he busied himself
with the facade of his residence.

------------------------------

Date: Tue, 2 Feb 1999 00:52:58 GMT
From: arash@MY-DEJANEWS.COM
Subject: NEWS99 - Dream That Turned Into Nightmare

Monday, February 1, 1999 Published at 10:38 GMT

World: Middle East


Iran's 'great day of hope'


Tehran in 1979: "The street was like a river of people"

By World Affairs Editor John Simpson

It was one of the key events of the 20th century. Ayatollah
Khomeini's return to Tehran after 16 years of exile
launched an Islamic revolution that changed the balance of
power in the Middle East, humiliated America and shifted
Iran back centuries in time.

But the mullahs around him were really the only ones who
really knew what they wanted. Everyone else was carried
away by the desire for a new start.

This was a genuinely popular revolution and the crowd that
turned out to greet him - at least three million - was
probably the biggest gathering of human beings ever.

There were peasants, office workers, intellectuals - and a
poet, Esmail Khoi.

"The street was like a river of people. Even on the trees
you could see people instead of birds. There were so many
people, all with faces shining with hope and aspiration,"
Mr Khoi remembers.

"Everybody was so kind to everybody. It was as if everybody
was everybody's loving sister or brother," he says.

Moderates, conservatives, the extreme left - they all
wanted Ayatollah Khomeini.

They managed to persuade themselves that, with him as their
leader, they could put an end to the corruption and the
cruelty and the political weakness of the Shah's regime
which had brought it tumbling down.

It was willing self-deception.

"All of the Iranian people had joined together to get rid
of a mighty emperor. It was and it will remain one of the
greatest days in our history," Mr Khoi says.

'Dream that turned into nightmare'

This was one of the last days of unity. Soon there would be
mass executions, bombs in the street, an eight-year war
provoked by Saddam Hussein's Iraq, heavy-handed controls on
every aspect of life.

The alliance which brought everyone together quickly fell
apart. But on this day it all lay in the future.

"The day was a great day of hopes and dreams, the day of
our greatest dreams. And it will remain a great day even
though our dream was soon to turn into a great nightmare,"
Mr Khoi says.

The revolution has not satisfied anyone, not even the
fundamentalist clerics who think the moderates are
betraying the revolution.

Yet for all that, the day the Ayatollah returned was one of
the great moments of the century.

------------------------------

Date: Mon, 1 Feb 1999 23:49:11 EST
From: KPGBT@AOL.COM
Subject: Amir Entezam case

Subj: For Immediate Release
Date: 99-02-01 20:34:53 EST
From: alliance@ait-cec.com
To: kpgbt@aol.com


February 1, 1999

Iranians across the U.S. and Europe declared January 23rd through the 30th
1999 as the week of Solidarity with the Iranian people, which was demonstrated
with rallies, meetings and letters of protest to political authorities all
over the world. The support of Archbishop Desmond M. Tutu on defense of human
rights in Iran was very valuable and well received within the Iranian
community of Washington, D.C. Subsequently, the Islamic regime of Iran has
brought another prominent political figure in Iran, Abbas Amir-Entezam, the
former deputy Prime Minister under Mehdi Bazargan's government, to put him on
trial. He has been advocating - in the form of a nonviolent movement - for
the rule of law, defense of human rights and democracy in Iran. Although Mr.
Entezam is gravely ill, the regime has taken him to hospital in chains, in
preparation for his trial.

The Alliance for Defense of Human Rights in Iran asks the United Nations to
demand from the Islamic regime in Iran an open tribunal for Mr. Amir-Entezam
with observers from the U.N. body and defense lawyers from Europe. His
personal attorney, Mr. Karim Lahijee who is residing in France, should be
guaranteed a secure and safe passage to Iran to attend this tribunal.

Mr. Amir-Entezam's life is in great danger for his participation in the
democracy movement by the Iranian people. We ask people from all walks of
life in the international community to support the Iranian people in their
struggle for implementing basic human rights and democracy in Iran. The
Islamic regime through the acts of terror and intimidation, has lost its
legitimacy to represent the Iranian people and we need to bring this matter to
the attention of the world body for the defense of people in Iran.

------------------------------

Date: Mon, 1 Feb 1999 23:47:51 EST
From: KPGBT@AOL.COM
Subject: cleric on freedom of expression

Iran Daily (Journal of Islamic Republic News Agency)
February 2, 1999


FARSI MEDIA POLITICAL FOCUS


Asr-e Ma interviewed Hojjatoleslam Seyyed Mohammad Ali
Ayazi excerpts of which are given here.

Any school of thought that believes in and trusts its own
thoughts and ideas, will nec-essarily have to advocate
freedom of thought and speech. Conversely, those who do not
have faith in their thoughts and are fearful of being
attacked by their oppo-nents, oppose freedom. Such schools
of thought intend to limit people so that peo-ple do not
pinpoint their weaknesses.

Secondly Islam has emphasized knowl-edge. And knowledge can
only spread and be established if there is freedom and the
men of thoughts and letters are dealt with respectfully. On
the other hand, knowledge is not a one-sided relationship.
Amajor por-tion of knowledge owes its existence to the
clash among various thoughts and beliefs.

In the absence of freedom, people do not get to know about
each other's views and do not have the chance of evaluating
their own thoughts and ideas. Whereas friction among
different thoughts will clarify many things. Moreover,
curtailing of freedom of thought and speech will reduce
social understand-ing.

Preventing the clash of ideas and thoughts will limit the
power of thinking and lead to superficiality. This is
something that is very rampant in despotic societies and as
a result, the slightest doubt will cause confu-sion and
hesitancy.

Moreover, if beliefs and ideas are not crit-ically
evaluated they will not be corrected; leading to
superstition. Only critical evalu-ation of thoughts, ideas
and views will in a logical and reasonable manner pave the
way for eradication of probable mistakes.


--

------------------------------

End of DNI-NEWS Digest - 31 Jan 1999 to 1 Feb 1999
**************************************************