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There are 6 messages totalling 595 lines in this issue.

Topics of the day:

1. Along the Nile
2. A Rescue Mission Fails
3. Off Topic - Warnning ! CIH Virus !
4. Interior Minister Addresses University Students
5. Taliban Deny Forcelanding Of Iranian Plane
6. RADIO FREE EUROPE-WEEKLY IRAQ REPORT

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

Date: Mon, 26 Apr 1999 16:06:40 EDT
From: Bobby Iri <Bobby@WWW.DCI.CO.IR>
Subject: Along the Nile

Along the Nile
==============


By John Lancaster

Sunday, April 25, 1999; Page X07

A PORTRAIT OF EGYPT

A Journey Through the

World of Militant Islam

By Mary Anne Weaver

Farrar Straus Giroux. 280 pp. $24


CAIRO

The City Victorious

By Max Rodenbeck

Knopf. 300 pp. $27.50

Reviewed by John Lancaster


Western journalists in the Middle East have been obsessed with
the prospect of an Islamic revolution in Egypt for much of the
last two decades. There are good reasons for this: Largely
blindsided by the 1979 Islamic revolution in Iran, the foreign
press was determined not to make the same mistake in Egypt,
where the eruption of extremist violence -- beginning with the
1981 assassination of President Anwar Sadat -- seemed to suggest
that the Arab world's most populous and arguably most important
country was headed down the same path. As the years go by,
however, forecasters of imminent, Iranian-style upheaval on the
Nile have begun to sound a bit like Chicken Little. What are we
to believe? Two excellent new books offer guidance -- if
somewhat different conclusions.

Mary Anne Weaver's A Portrait of Egypt is solidly in the
doom-and-gloom camp. A correspondent for the New Yorker, Weaver
knows her subject well, having first encountered Egypt as a
graduate student at the American University of Cairo in the late
1970s. She focuses almost exclusively on the rise of political
Islam in Egypt, from the founding of the Muslim Brotherhood in
the 1930s to recent, notorious terrorist incidents, including
the 1993 World Trade Center bombing.

What distinguishes Weaver's work is her skill as a reporter and
storyteller. She is not afraid to wander down dark alleys,
taking us from the pungent slums of Cairo -- where her guides
include members of extremist groups on the lam from the Egyptian
mukhabarat, or secret police -- to a Saudi-funded militant
"university" near Peshawar on Pakistan's border with
Afghanistan. She fleshes out her narrative with sharply drawn
portraits of key figures in the battle between Islamists and
secularists, including the phlegmatic Egyptian president, Hosni
Mubarak, and Sheikh Omar Abdel-Rahman, the blind Egyptian cleric
now serving a life sentence in the United States for conspiring
to blow up New York City landmarks.

Weaver at times seems sympathetic to the militants, and she
makes no secret of her distaste for Egypt's brutal security
services, whose members are described more than once as
"disagreeable-looking" fellows in sunglasses and blue jeans. She
describes in chilling detail the Kafkaesque system that permits
the government to indefinitely detain suspected "terrorists" --
Mubarak's term for anyone even vaguely sympathetic to the
militants' goal of an Islamic state. Still, Weaver does not
shrink from exposing the loony fanaticism of Abdel-Rahman and
rank-and-file militants like "Abou Juhaiman," a dour young
university graduate who explains over tea why it is permissible
to kill Coptic Christians for their gold.

Although it is terrorism that invariably gets the attention in
the West, Weaver understands that the real strength of the
Islamist movement is not be found in its violent fringe. Of far
more significance is the degree to which the movement's values
have permeated mainstream institutions such as universities,
professional unions and the courts, which often have sided with
radical clerics in legal actions against secular intellectuals.
Weaver devotes an entire chapter to the tale of Nasr Hamed Abu
Zeid, a mild-mannered college professor ordered to divorce his
wife -- against her wishes -- on the ground that his writings
reveal him as an "apostate" unfit for marriage to a Muslim
woman. This is a "revolution by stealth."

It is also, in Weaver's view, all but inevitable -- and here the
book is on shakier ground. Like others who have covered the same
topic, Weaver ignores the powerful countervailing pressures of
globalization and Westernization that, for better and for worse,
are shaping Egypt as profoundly as the Koran; nowhere in this
book, for example, will you read about Cairo's 20 private
Internet providers or its fast-growing software industry. But
you don't have to agree with Weaver's conclusions to admire her
textured and highly readable account of a timely and important
subject.
Islamic fundamentalism is but a subplot of Cairo: The City
Victorious by Max Rodenbeck, a correspondent for the Economist
and longtime resident of the Egyptian capital. Rodenbeck sets
himself the hugely ambitious task of tracing the story of Cairo
from its founding to the present day. In doing so, he provides
some of the perspective that is missing from Weaver's account.

He also provides an enormously entertaining read. Like the city
it describes, Rodenbeck's lively and affectionate portrait is
structured around the loosest of organizing principles, with
chapters on tomb-building, foreign invaders, cosmopolitanism and
other themes that have animated the Egyptian capital through the
ages. The author veers easily between past and present, personal
and historical: An account of taking tea with a member of
Egypt's deposed royal family, for example, leads to a discussion
of the roots of Egyptian nationalism, and so on. The experience
is a bit like rummaging through an attic.

What makes the book so much fun is its rich trove of character
and anecdote. Rodenbeck loves a good yarn, the more bizarre --
or gruesome -- the better. During one medieval famine, he
writes, the price of bread rose "so far beyond the reach of the
poor that some were said to have resorted to fitting meat hooks
to ropes so as to fish unlucky pedestrians off the street and
eat them." Then there is the story of the 10th-century caliph
who was so fond of cherries, unavailable in Egypt, that he
arranged to have them tied to the feet of homing pigeons in
Lebanon and flown by relays 400 miles to Cairo.

For all its colorful detail, Rodenbeck's book is suffused with
sadness over the decline of a once-great city. Cairo, after all,
was the Mother of the World, cosmopolitan crossroads of an
Islamic empire that stretched from Morocco to present-day Iran.
By the time Napoleon arrived in 1798, three centuries of Ottoman
rule had reduced the city to a seedy, provincial outpost of
superstition and squalor. Cairo has never really recovered. The
departure of Egypt's British colonial masters after World War II
opened the door to the false promise of Arab nationalism, which
more recently has yielded to the still-unproven slogan "Islam is
the Solution."

But if decay is a dominant theme in this book, then so is
survival. Rodenbeck demonstrates persuasively that for all the
manifestations of Islamic radicalism that have tormented Egypt
in recent years, its people are inherently pragmatic and
flexible. As long ago as the 1940s, he notes, conservative
sheikhs at Cairo's Al Azhar University sanctioned the use of
birth control. Nor does he overlook the slowly improving economy
in Egypt, where one in seven Cairo families now owns a car or
motorcycle and three-fourths own washing machines or
refrigerators. Rising living standards alone won't make the
militants go away. But Rodenbeck's perspective is useful in
assessing the prospects for Islamic revolution in Egypt -- and
also in understanding why its capital has remained, for 5,000
years, "The City Victorious."

John Lancaster was Middle East correspondent for The Washington
Post from 1994-98.

© Copyright 1999 The Washington Post Company

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

Date: Mon, 26 Apr 1999 16:07:02 EDT
From: Bobby Iri <Bobby@WWW.DCI.CO.IR>
Subject: A Rescue Mission Fails

A Rescue Mission Fails
======================

By William Greider
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, April 25, 1999; Page F02

Excerpts from "the first rough draft of history" as reported in

The Washington Post on this date in the 20th century.

The failure of the rescue mission to free the 53 American
hostages in Iran symbolized for many the failure of Jimmy
Carter's presidency. He would be swept out of office the
following November, and the hostages freed two months later, the
day of Ronald Reagan's inauguration. An excerpt from The Post of
April 25, 1980:



The United States tried and failed to rescue the American
hostages in Iran with a commando-style raid in which eight U.S.
crewmen were killed, the White House announced
today.

The military operation, according to a post-midnight statement
from the White House, was "aborted" because of an equipment
failure, followed by a collision of two aircraft, at a remote
desert location, in which the eight were killed and others
injured.

The American troops, including the injured, were then airlifted
safely from the unknown staging site in Iran, according to the
statement issued by White House press secretary Jody Powell.

The statement issued shortly after 1 a.m. said:

"This mission was not motivated by hostility toward Iran or the
Iranian people, and there were no Iranian casualties.
Preparations for the rescue mission were ordered for
humanitarian reasons, to protect the national interests of this
country and to alleviate international tensions."

Officials at the Pentagon in the early-morning hours today
declined to give any details of the abortive operation,
asserting that some military activities related to the rescue
attempt were still in progress.

In Tehran, Iranian leaders ordered an immediate investigation
into the White House announcement but appeared to have few
details themselves of precisely what had occurred, Washington
Post correspondent William Branigin reported.

Army commander-in-chief Maj. Gen. Hadi Shadmehr said he had no
indication of exactly where the aircraft collided, but his staff
was checking all airstrips in the country. Diplomatic sources in
Tehran said they had received reports of a landing in the
southeastern Iranian province of Baluchistan Wednesday night
[midday Wednesday in Washington] but had no confirmation of
that.

At the State Department, Mark Johnson, an official of the Iran
working group, said in the early morning that "we have no
evidence of any reaction against the hostages."

Members of the families of 53 hostages held in Iran since last
Nov. 4 were awakened with telephone calls from the government
last night, notifying them of the raid and its failure.

In the highest control centers of Washington, the top officials
of the government were meeting through the night -- the
president at the White House, secretary of defense at the
Pentagon, and the secretary of state in Foggy Bottom. President
Carter canceled a weekend trip to Camp David and scheduled a 7
a.m. appearance on network television.

"The United States continues to hold the government of Iran
responsible for the safety of the American hostages," the White
House said early today in its statement.

"The United States remains determined to obtain their safe
release at the earliest possible date."



This series runs on the back page of the comics Monday through
Saturday.


© Copyright 1999 The Washington Post Company

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

Date: Mon, 26 Apr 1999 16:08:04 EDT
From: Bobby Iri <Bobby@WWW.DCI.CO.IR>
Subject: Off Topic - Warnning ! CIH Virus !

U.S. Computer Center Posts CIH Virus Warning
============================================


12:17 a.m. Apr 25, 1999 Eastern
SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Carnegie Mellon University's Computer
Emergency Response Team posted a warning Friday to computer
users about the CIH/Chernobyl virus, which could wipe out data
on disk drives or make it impossible for programs to start up.

The computer group issued its warning after ``getting a number
of requests for information'' about the virus expected to hit
Monday. The warning could be read on the CERT Web site at
http://www.cert.org.
The virus is a malicious piece of software code that has been
turning up in PCs for months, but this version is the
most-feared variation.

The so-called CIH or ``space filler'' virus originated in Asia
last summer and hits on the 26th of each month. The CIH 1.2 that
appears only once a year in April is the ``most prevalent and
dangerous'' form of the virus, according to Sal Viveros,
marketing vice president for Network Associates Inc., the
largest computer security company.

The CIH virus is far more dangerous to individual computers than
Melissa, the much-publicized bug that spread relatively benign
problems far and wide on the Internet last month.

The CIH virus can irretrievably destroy data on a user's
computer, and even make the machine inoperable.

It gets the name ``space filler'' because it uses a special
technique that secretly fills file space on computers and
thwarts many of the antivirus softwares in place before its
arrival. The virus is also called the Chernobyl virus because it
is timed to go off on the anniversary of the Russian nuclear
accident, one of technology's worst disasters.

The virus is designed to hide from view by inserting itself into
empty coding slots on a computer's software utilities. Viruses
are often detected because they use up extra space on hard
drives, but the ``space filler'' helps CIH avoid that
traditional method of detection. It can lie dormant for months
before causing damage.

The April version of the virus is particularly damaging because
it can also keep a computer from starting up by infecting the
software on which all the PC's programs depend, the basic
input/output system, or BIOS. If the BIOS is infected, the
computer will not start.

Most up-to-date anti-virus software will spot the bug, if it is
there, and many corporate computers have recently upgraded their
protection due to the Melissa scare, Viveros said.

(Dick.satran+reuters.com, San Francisco Reuters office
415-677-2500)


Copyright 1999 Reuters Limited.



Experts Warn of Coming Computer Virus
=====================================


Memories of Chernobyl


S A N F R A N C I S C O, April 23 — A virus that can wipe
out all the data on a personal computer’s hard drive and even
mta on a personal computer’s hard drive and even
mta on a personal computer’s hard drive and even
make it impossible to start programs up is set to hit next
Monday, security experts warned.
The virus is a malicious piece of software code that has
been turning up in PCs for months, but the version that
will strike on Monday is the most-feared variation.
The so-called CIH or pace filler” virus originated in
Asia l“space filler” virus originated in
Asia last summer and hits on the 26th of each month. The
CIH 1.2 that appears only once a year in April is the ost
prevalent and dangerous” fo“most
prevalent and dangerous” form of the virus, said Sal
Viveros, marketing vice president for Network Associates,
the largest computer security company.
The CIH virus is far more dangerous to individual computers
than Melissa, the much publicized bug that spread
relatively benign problems far and wide on the Internet
last month.
Can Lie Dormant for Months
The CIH virus can irretrievably destroy data on a user’s
computer, and even make the machine inoperable. Melissa only
really caused embarrassment, by sending a list of porn sites
from a target computer’s e-mail address book, and tied up some
corporate e-mail systems with traffic.
The CIH gets the name pace filler” bec“space filler” because it
uses a
special technique that secretly fills file space on
computers and thwarts many of the anti-virus softwares in
place before its arrival. The virus is also called the
Chernobyl virus because it’s timed to go off on the
anniversary of the Russian nuclear accident, one of
technology’s worst disasters.
The virus is designed to hide from view by inserting itself
into empty coding slots on a computer’s software utilities.
Viruses are often detected because they use up extra space
on hard drives, but the pace filler” helps C“space filler” helps
CIH avoid that
traditional method of detection. It can lie dormant for
months before causing damage.

Home PCs at Highest Risk
The April version of the virus is particularly damaging because
it can also keep a computer from starting up by infecting the
software on which all the PC’s programs depend, the basic
input/output system, or BIOS. If the BIOS is infected, the
computer will not start.
Most up-to-date anti-virus software will spot the bug, if
it’s there, and many corporate computers have recently
upgraded their protection due to the Melissa scare, said
Network Associates’ Viveros.
The biggest impact is likely to be on home computers, said
Viveros, who added that computer users can download an
anti-virus program free of charge from his company’s site
(http://www.avertlabs.com/public/stand_alone/). The virus
is spread by e-mail over the Internet or in pirated
software. It infects Windows 95 and Windows 98 files.
eople should make sure they h“People should make sure they have the
latest antivirus
software run on their computers,” said Bill Pollak, of
Carnegie Mellon’s Software Engineering Institute, which
runs the Computer Emergency Response Team, or CERT.



Copyright 1999 Reuters.

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

Date: Mon, 26 Apr 1999 16:33:08 EDT
From: Bobby Iri <Bobby@WWW.DCI.CO.IR>
Subject: Interior Minister Addresses University Students

Interior Minister Addresses University Students
===============================================

thr 021
mousavi lari-students
interior minister addresses university students
tehran, april 26, irna -- interior minister abdolvahed mousavi lari
here sunday evening addressed a gathering of university students at
the central office of the union of islamic students associations of
universities throughout the country at a ceremony commemorating the
martyrdom of imam hussein (as).
describing the will of imam hussein (as) as a political and divine
document from the history of islam and the uprising at karbala, he
said that at the mourning ceremonies efforts should be made to
understand the objectives of the karbala uprising.
he said the reliance on the principles of reforms was insufficient
and said the most corrupt humans justify their actions by claiming to
improve the conditions of the society.
rejecting the defense for islamic values without correctly knowing
these values as impossible, he asked, ''without understanding these
values how can one defend them let alone even remain committed to
them?''

he stressed that one should not consider one's personal opinion as
the absolute and unquestionable truth and said religion is opposed to
dealing with any issue violently.
referring to naming the current iranian year as the year of the
late imam khomeini, he said it is important to understand the way,
methods and ideas of the late imam properly as these thoughts are the
main way out for the society.
he urged all groups and political factions not to use the
objectives and ideas of the late imam khomeini as a tool for barter.
ah/dh/
end
::irna 26/04/99 15:56

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

Date: Mon, 26 Apr 1999 16:33:24 EDT
From: Bobby Iri <Bobby@WWW.DCI.CO.IR>
Subject: Taliban Deny Forcelanding Of Iranian Plane

Taliban Deny Forcelanding Of Iranian Plane
==========================================


thr 017
taliban-denial
taliban deny forcelanding of iranian plane
islamabad, april 26, irna -- taliban have denied the press reports
about the alleged forcelanding, by them, of "an iranian plane,
carrying arms and ammunition to bamyan province of afghanistan."
bbc had reported on sunday that an iranian plane, loaded with
arms an ammunition, while on its way to bamyan for supplying weapons
to the hizb-e-wahdat, was impounded by taliban in the south-western
herat city of afghanistan.
"this is a baseless report and has no substance," motmaem, a
militia spokesman told the pakistani newspaper, "the news".
"we have checked with all our airbases. nobody has any knowledge
of the iranian plane whatsoever," abdul hay mutmain said on telephone
from kandahar.
"we were all very surprised when we heard about the forcelanding
of an iranian plane," mutmaen said while referring to the bbc report
which had quoted taliban sources in kabul as claiming forcelanding of
the plane.
ah/md/dh
end end

::irna 26/04/99 15:36
˙

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

Date: Mon, 26 Apr 1999 21:19:22 EDT
From: Bobby Iri <Bobby@WWW.DCI.CO.IR>
Subject: RADIO FREE EUROPE-WEEKLY IRAQ REPORT

RADIO FREE EUROPE/RADIO LIBERTY, PRAGUE, CZECH REPUBLIC
_____________________________________________________________
RFE/RL IRAQ REPORT
Special Issue No. 1, 26 April 1999

A Review of Developments in Iraq Prepared by the Regional
Specialists of RFE/RL's Newsline Team

RUSSIA PROMISES TO HELP IRAQ REGAIN KURDISTAN.
An Iraqi Foreign Ministry source told "Al-Hayah" on 22
April that Moscow has promised Baghdad that it would aid
Iraqi President Saddam Husseyn's efforts to extend its
control over Kurdish areas in northern Iraq. Iraq appears to
be preparing to do just that: units of the Republican Guard
and Iraqi Army armor have deployed along the border of this
region, Saddam Fedayeen groups have moved to cities near
Kurdistan, and a pro-Baghdad Kurdish group has launched
unspecified "activities" to "stop the plan to separate
Kurdistan from the national will."
Part of Iraqi Kurdistan, including the territory under
the control of the Kurdistan Regional Government, lies within
the northern no-fly zone, which guarantees the KRG's
security. Iraqi sources have indicated that the purpose of
troops near Kurdistan is to "respond firmly" to all "American
projects" aimed at transforming Kurdistan into an opposition
base, according to an AFP dispatch which cites the 18 April
"Al-Hayah." Many Kurds recommend that a no-drive zone also be
imposed on the no-fly zone to halt a potential Iraqi tank
offensive.
Apparently, Moscow believes that it can reap some
benefits by supporting Iraq--in addition to reaffirming the
longstanding friendship between Russian Prime Minister
Yevgenii Primakov and Husseyn. And reports that it will back
Baghdad against the Kurds is consistent with a Russian policy
intended to lift sanctions from Iraq. If Moscow succeeds in
either of these efforts, the Russian government would
certainly be in a position to reclaim an expanded role in
international affairs as an opponent of American policy.
Many in Moscow's financial community expect the Russian
government to succeed in lifting sanctions: LUKoil has just
received a credit of $150 million from Sberbank to finance
projects in Iraq, "Novyye Izvestiya" reported on 22 April.
The Russian oil giant has already signed a production-sharing
agreement on the development of Iraq's West Qurna oil
deposits but, as Iraq's oil minister has said:
"Sanctions...are impeding the proper steps to implement the
deals," according to a 12 March Energy Intelligence Group
special report.
In a related move, the lower house of the Russian
parliament, the State Duma, held hearings this week on the
theme "The New World Order and the European Future." In
addition to calling for a halt of NATO air strikes against
Belgrade, the Russian parliamentarians urged that Moscow
provide moral, political, and even military support to
Yugoslavia. Apparently, at least some in the Russian capital
are thinking about extending similar kinds of assistance to
Iraq.

*************************************************
Copyright (c) 1999. RFE/RL, Inc. All rights reserved.

The RFE/RL Iraq Report is prepared weekly by David Nissman on
the basis of materials from RFE/RL broadcast services, RFE/RL
Newsline, and other news services. Direct comments to David
Nissman at nissmand@rferl.org

Technical queries should be emailed to
listmanager@list.rferl.org

For information on subscriptions or reprints, contact Paul
Goble in Washington at (202) 457-6947 or at goblep@rferl.org
Back issues are available on the RFE/RL Web site at:
http://www.rferl.org/iraq-report

HOW TO SUBSCRIBE
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word subscribe as the subject of the message.

HOW TO UNSUBSCRIBE
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word unsubscribe as the subject of the message

NEWS BROADCASTS ONLINE
Listen to news about Iraq daily on the RFE/RL Web site:
http://www.rferl.org/bd/iq/index.html

RADIO FREE IRAQ SHORTWAVE BROADCASTS
Every day at 1700 CET and 1900 Baghdad time Radio Free Iraq
broadcasts at the following frequencies: 6130, 9540, 9850 and
11915 Kilohertz, corresponding with 49, 31.5, 30.5, and 25
meters shortwave.

Daily programs with some updates will be repeated every
morning at 0400 CET, 0600 Baghdad time on the following
frequencies: 5965, 7110, 7275, 9740 Kilohertz, corresponding
with 50, 42, 41, and 31 meters shortwave.

_____________________________________________________________
RADIO FREE EUROPE/RADIO LIBERTY, PRAGUE, CZECH REPUBLIC

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

End of DNI-NEWS Digest - 26 Apr 1999
************************************