Subject: DNI-NEWS Digest - 2 Dec 1999 to 3 Dec 1999

There are 2 messages totalling 173 lines in this issue.

Topics of the day:

1. Asia
2. Fwd: More Murders

Date: Fri, 3 Dec 1999 04:00:33 EST
From: Sohrab Arman <Sohrab68@AOL.COM>
Subject: Asia

STRATFOR.COM Global Intelligence Update
December 3, 1999


Occasion for Pan-Asian Cooperation


Summary

Asia is on the threshold of abandoning its longstanding policy of
non-interference. On Nov. 2, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir
Mohamad called on the region to form a pan-Asian security structure
to promote peaceful cooperation. His move echoes a growing paradigm
shift, as Asian countries begin to realize that threats to
individual nations' stability threaten that of the entire region.
The ongoing separatist struggles in Indonesia have strengthened
this sentiment; the 10 ASEAN members, and Japan, China and South
Korea have announced that they stand behind Indonesia's
sovereignty. Although they now lack the military capability to
support their stand, Asian nations are moving faster than ever
toward acting like a regional bloc.


Analysis

Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has called for a pan-
Asian security force. On Dec. 2, he urged Asian nations to "forget
the war which was fought 50 years ago," in order to join together
to maintain peace in the region. Mahathir suggested that China and
Japan could play leading roles.

While a unified security structure is likely years away, Mahathir's
statement unmistakably articulates an ongoing shift in Asian
governments' attitudes. The region is becoming increasingly
convinced that its historical policy of non-interference in each
others' domestic affairs is no longer adequate.

Since World War II, Asian nations have followed a doctrine of non-
interference in regional relations. Each nation has dealt with its
own internal security issues. In recent years, regional events have
challenged that policy. Asian countries are beginning to realize
that the instability of individual countries affects the security
of the entire region. For example, the region-wide currency crisis
in 1997, as well as the ongoing recovery, has shown Asian nations
that their economies are closely intertwined. Also in 1997, ASEAN
did everything but intervene when a violent coup stalled Cambodia's
entry into the organization.

Indonesia's growing instability sparked a debate over the rigid
policy of non-interference, starting with East Timor's violent
transition to independence. East Timor's pro-independence vote
threw the island into chaos in early September, and began a
downward spiral of separatist activity that increasingly threatens
Indonesia's stability.

With East Timor, Asian countries faced a difficult decision: defy
their longstanding policy of non-interference, or risk Indonesia's
stability -- and their own. A healthy Indonesia is extremely
important to the region. The country guards the Straits of Malacca,
the region's major shipping route. Indonesia is also ASEAN's
largest member.

Yet the region failed to respond quickly when the situation in East
Timor grew violent. Instead, the first troops to arrive on the
island Sept. 20 were almost entirely from Australia, Britain and
New Zealand. While Asian countries did eventually send troops,
Australia remained the dominant force, with 4,303 out of 5,651
troops on Oct. 18. Asian troops will finally take a more
substantial role in January 2000. Kofi Annan announced Nov. 17 that
the Philippines and one other country, yet unnamed, will takeover
control of the U.N. peacekeeping force.

Now, Indonesia is dealing with another threat to its stability:
urgent calls for independence from separatists in Aceh, one of many
restive provinces inspired by East Timor. Both the Indonesian
government and military have said that Aceh would not be allowed to
vote on independence. Meanwhile, Aceh has set Dec. 4 as the
deadline for the government to agree to a referendum on
independence. With compromise unlikely, violence could ensue.

All 10 countries of ASEAN, plus Japan, China and South Korea, have
agreed that they are committed to protecting Indonesia's
sovereignty and stability. This is a significant departure from the
past. However, they are not prepared to back Indonesia militarily.
The countries do not likely have the necessary force projection to
carry out such an operation. Moreover, forming an integrated
security alliance would be logistically difficult. Trying to
integrate the militaries from more than a dozen different countries
would be no easy task.

Asia is clearly unready to launch Mahathir's suggested alliance.
Nevertheless, it realizes the need for a regional approach to
security, as is seen in a plan approved at the recent ASEAN summit
to establish a permanent ministerial-level group to deal with
rapidly emerging security issues. Asia has crossed the threshold
and is moving faster than ever toward acting like a regional bloc.



(c) 1999, Stratfor, Inc. http://www.stratfor.com

Date: Fri, 3 Dec 1999 04:46:56 EST
From: Sohrab Arman <Sohrab68@AOL.COM>
Subject: Fwd: More Murders

Iran National Salvation Front

Sobh E Emrooz
Tehran-Iran

Dr. Naser Zarafshan, the lawyer of the heirs of those slain in the
serial killings, said evidence shows that the serial murders were
committed based on fatwas decrees issued by religious sources.

Those who issued those fatwas should be identified to people.

Those behind the serial killings, have confessed to many more murders than
the murders of Foruhars, Mokhtari and Pouyandeh, he said.
In a statement, a group previously led by Saeed Emami main agent behind
serial murders said all the murders were condemned in absentia, by a court
consisting of three judges, as corrupts on the earth and were sentenced to
death.


End of DNI-NEWS Digest - 2 Dec 1999 to 3 Dec 1999