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Old Thursday, April 20, 2006
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Post Detailed knowledge of the alleged military plans - Iran

WASHINGTON (AFP) - Critics of the George W. Bush administration expressed alarm about explosive new reports that the president is mulling military options to knock out Iran's nuclear program.

Retired General Anthony Zinni, the former head of US Central Command, told US television Sunday that he had no detailed knowledge of the alleged military plans, but he suggested a preemptive strike against Iran's nuclear program would be extremely risky.

"Any military plan involving Iran is going to be very difficult. We should not fool ourselves to think it will just be a strike and then it will be over," said Zinni.

"The Iranians will retaliate, and they have many possibilities in an area where there are many vulnerabilities, from our troop positions to the oil and gas in the region that can be interrupted, to attacks on Israel, to the conduct of terrorism," he said.

Zinni made his remarks after the publication of a pair of reports this weekend saying that the administration is seriously considering military action against Iran, amid a stalemate in diplomatic efforts.

The New Yorker magazine reported in its April 17 issue that the administration is planning a massive bombing campaign against Iran, including use of bunker-buster nuclear bombs to destroy a key suspected Iranian nuclear weapons facility.

The article by investigative journalist Seymour Hersh said that Bush and others in the White House have come to view Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as a potential "Adolf Hitler."

"That's the name they're using," Hersh quoted a former senior intelligence official as saying.

Hersh told CNN's "Late Edition" show that a "messianic" president feels driven to try to contain Iran and that the White House is determined to keep open a nuclear option against strong objections from some top Pentagon officials.

"It's the fact that the White House wouldn't let it go that has got the JCS (Joint Chiefs of Staff) in an uproar," he said.

"He (Bush) thinks, as I wrote, that he's the only one now who will have the courage to do it," said Hersh, the reporter who also broke the Abu Ghraib prison abuse scandal.

Hersh reports in his article that the administration already has advance forces on the ground in Iran.

"I think it's fraught with danger. But they're there," he told CNN.

Frederick Jones, spokesman for the National Security Council, which advises the president, told AFP: "The US government has been very clear about its approach in dealing with Iran."

"As the president has said repeatedly, we, the US, along with the international community, are seeking a diplomatic solution."

Democratic Senator John Kerry, one of the administration's most outspoken critics, assailed the White House for what he said is its over-reliance on military might.

"That is another example of the shoot-from-the-hip, cowboy diplomacy of this administration," the former Democratic presidential contender said.

"For us to think about exploding tactical nuclear weapons in some way is the height of irresponsibility. It would be destructive to any non-proliferation efforts and the military assessment is, it would not work," he told NBC television's "Meet the Press" program.

Meanwhile, according to a report Sunday in the Washington Post, Bush is studying options for military strikes against Iran as part of a broader strategy of coercive diplomacy to pressure Tehran to abandon its alleged nuclear program.

Citing unnamed US officials and independent analysts, the newspaper said no attack appears likely in the short term, but officials are using the threat to convince Iranians of the seriousness of its intentions.

The paper said Bush views Tehran as a serious menace that must be dealt with before his presidency ends. The White House, in its new National Security Strategy, labeled Iran the most serious challenge to the United States posed by any country.

Zinni said he shared Washington's concerns about Tehran's motives, but said diplomatic efforts should first be exhausted.

"I believe that if the international community would stand fast, the Russians and the Chinese would stay with us, I think that kind of pressure, the fear of being isolated and condemned as a rogue state could have the effect that we need to halt the program.

"I'm not saying that there isn't a military action that will become necessary at some point," Zinni continued.

"But I believe ... when you take that military action, you have to ask the question, 'and then what?' Because you're going to have a series of those 'and then whats' down the road," he said.

Hersh told CNN however, that the White House has spurned Tehran's overtures for dialogue.

"This president is not talking to the Iranians. They are trying very hard to make contact, I can assure you of that, in many different forms," he said.

"He's not talking. And there's no public pressure on the White House to start bilateral talks. And that's what amazes everybody," he said.
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Old Friday, April 21, 2006
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Post Britain took part in mock Iran invasion

Britain took part in mock Iran invasion
Pentagon planned for Tehran conflict with war game involving UK troops

Julian Borger in Washington and Ewen MacAskill
Saturday April 15, 2006

Guardian

British officers took part in a US war game aimed at preparing for a possible invasion of Iran, despite repeated claims by the foreign secretary, Jack Straw, that a military strike against Iran is inconceivable.
The war game, codenamed Hotspur 2004, took place at the US base of Fort Belvoir in Virginia in July 2004.

A Ministry of Defence spokesman played down its significance yesterday. "These paper-based exercises are designed to test officers to the limit in fictitious scenarios. We use invented countries and situations using real maps," he said.

The disclosure of Britain's participation came in the week in which the Iranian crisis intensified, with a US report that the White House was contemplating a tactical nuclear strike and Tehran defying the United Nations security council.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the Iranian president, who sparked outrage in the US, Europe and Israel last year by calling for Israel to be wiped off the face of the Earth, created more alarm yesterday. He told a conference in Tehran in support of the Palestinians: "Like it or not, the Zionist regime is heading toward annihilation. The Zionist regime is a rotten, dried tree that will be eliminated by one storm."

The senior British officers took part in the Iranian war game just over a year after the invasion of Iraq. It was focused on the Caspian Sea, with an invasion date of 2015. Although the planners said the game was based on a fictitious Middle East country called Korona, the border corresponded exactly with Iran's and the characteristics of the enemy were Iranian.

A British medium-weight brigade operated as part of a US-led force.

The MoD's Defence Science and Technology Laboratory, which helped run the war game, described it on its website as the "year's main analytical event of the UK-US Future Land Operations Interoperability Study" aimed at ensuring that both armies work well together. The study "was extremely well received on both sides of the Atlantic".

According to an MoD source, war games covering a variety of scenarios are conducted regularly by senior British officers in the UK, the US or at Nato headquarters. He cited senior military staff carrying out a mock invasion of southern England last week and one of Scotland in January.

However, Hotspur took place at a time of accelerated US planning after the fall of Baghdad for a possible conflict with Iran. That planning is being carried out by US Central Command, responsible for the Middle East and central Asia area of operations, and by Strategic Command, which carries out long-range bombing and nuclear operations.

William Arkin, a former army intelligence officer who first reported on the contingency planning for a possible nuclear strike against Iran in his military column for the Washington Post online, said: "The United States military is really, really getting ready, building war plans and options, studying maps, shifting its thinking."

A Foreign Office spokesman said: "The foreign secretary has made his position very clear that military action is inconceivable. The Foreign Office regards speculation about war, particularly involving Britain, as unhelpful at a time when the diplomatic route is still being pursued."

After the failure of a mission to Tehran on Thursday by Mohammed ElBaradei, the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Russia announced a diplomatic initiative yesterday. It is to host a new round of talks in Moscow on Tuesday with the US, the EU and China.

Guardian Unlimited © Guardian Newspapers Limited 2006
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Old Friday, April 21, 2006
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Post Britain took part in mock Iran invasion

Britain took part in mock Iran invasion
Pentagon planned for Tehran conflict with war game involving UK troops

Julian Borger in Washington and Ewen MacAskill
Saturday April 15, 2006

Guardian

British officers took part in a US war game aimed at preparing for a possible invasion of Iran, despite repeated claims by the foreign secretary, Jack Straw, that a military strike against Iran is inconceivable.
The war game, codenamed Hotspur 2004, took place at the US base of Fort Belvoir in Virginia in July 2004.

A Ministry of Defence spokesman played down its significance yesterday. "These paper-based exercises are designed to test officers to the limit in fictitious scenarios. We use invented countries and situations using real maps," he said.

The disclosure of Britain's participation came in the week in which the Iranian crisis intensified, with a US report that the White House was contemplating a tactical nuclear strike and Tehran defying the United Nations security council.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the Iranian president, who sparked outrage in the US, Europe and Israel last year by calling for Israel to be wiped off the face of the Earth, created more alarm yesterday. He told a conference in Tehran in support of the Palestinians: "Like it or not, the Zionist regime is heading toward annihilation. The Zionist regime is a rotten, dried tree that will be eliminated by one storm."

The senior British officers took part in the Iranian war game just over a year after the invasion of Iraq. It was focused on the Caspian Sea, with an invasion date of 2015. Although the planners said the game was based on a fictitious Middle East country called Korona, the border corresponded exactly with Iran's and the characteristics of the enemy were Iranian.

A British medium-weight brigade operated as part of a US-led force.

The MoD's Defence Science and Technology Laboratory, which helped run the war game, described it on its website as the "year's main analytical event of the UK-US Future Land Operations Interoperability Study" aimed at ensuring that both armies work well together. The study "was extremely well received on both sides of the Atlantic".

According to an MoD source, war games covering a variety of scenarios are conducted regularly by senior British officers in the UK, the US or at Nato headquarters. He cited senior military staff carrying out a mock invasion of southern England last week and one of Scotland in January.

However, Hotspur took place at a time of accelerated US planning after the fall of Baghdad for a possible conflict with Iran. That planning is being carried out by US Central Command, responsible for the Middle East and central Asia area of operations, and by Strategic Command, which carries out long-range bombing and nuclear operations.

William Arkin, a former army intelligence officer who first reported on the contingency planning for a possible nuclear strike against Iran in his military column for the Washington Post online, said: "The United States military is really, really getting ready, building war plans and options, studying maps, shifting its thinking."

A Foreign Office spokesman said: "The foreign secretary has made his position very clear that military action is inconceivable. The Foreign Office regards speculation about war, particularly involving Britain, as unhelpful at a time when the diplomatic route is still being pursued."

After the failure of a mission to Tehran on Thursday by Mohammed ElBaradei, the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Russia announced a diplomatic initiative yesterday. It is to host a new round of talks in Moscow on Tuesday with the US, the EU and China.

Guardian Unlimited © Guardian Newspapers Limited 2006
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All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good people to do nothing.
Plz Pray,
Sardarzada
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Old Friday, April 21, 2006
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Post Abbas Edalat Scottish Tour

18th April 2006 18:47
Abbas Edalat Scottish Tour

Contributor: colonsay
Speaking tour by Prof. Abbas Edalat. Stop the drive to nuclear war on Iran!

Glasgow. 7 -9 pm, Wednesday, 26th April, Al-Furqan Mosque, Carrington Street (St.George’s Cross underground). Includes film showing, tea and biscuits and chance to meet speakers. The other speaker will be Rory Winter of Iran Solidarity

Glasgow University. 1-2 pm, Thursday, 27th April. Boyd Orr building, Room 412 (LTB). In collaboration with Glasgow University
Socialist Society.

Edinburgh. 7.30-9.30 pm, Thursday, 27th April, St.John’s Church, Princes Street. The other speaker will be Michael MacGregor (Fight Racism!Fight Imperialism!)

All welcome. Admission free.
As coalition forces continue to be bogged down in Iraq, the consequences of that catastrophic war begin to make themselves felt. The Asian Development Bank has issued a warning about the collapse of the once mighty dollar, as the greenbacks roll off the printing presses to cover the one or two trillion dollar cost of the war. If the dollar goes, can the pound be far behind?
Meanwhile, at home, Blair works to extinguish what remains of our democracy. In a startling illustration of chaos theory, the discovery of a dead swan, of suspect origin, triggers the displacement of the trusty old, British cabinet by the shadowy, appropriately named, COBRA. Parliamentary democracy is already being effectively abolished by Blair’s Legislative and Regulatory Reform Bill.
Evidently, despite the mess they have brought about, or, rather, because of it, the War Party strives to hold power at any cost. They have a trump card,.....war; and a new target,... Iran. Seymour Hersch’s recent article in The New Yorker confirms developments already familiar to our readership. The bad news is that the Bush regime plans to use nuclear weapons: the good news is that the military are vehemently opposing this.
We need to create a citizen’s movement to tilt the balance against the escalation of the war. To this end Iran Solidarity has organised a speaking tour by the prominent Iranian academic and antiwar activist Professor Abbas Edalat, founder of The Campaign against Sanctions and Military Intervention in Iran.He recently returned form a speaking tour in the USA where he spoke outside the UN headquarters on the 18th March anti-war demonstration He is uniquely qualified to explain the background and unfolding developments of this crisis.
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Old Friday, April 21, 2006
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Post Blair and Straw at Odds over US Action in Iran

Breaking News - Blair and Straw at Odds over US Action in Iran

20th April 2006 17:59
Blair and Straw at Odds over US Action in Iran

Published on Thursday, April 20, 2006 by the Independent / UK
Blair and Straw at Odds over US Action in Iran
by Colin Brown and Andy McSmith


Jack Straw has warned Cabinet colleagues that it would be illegal for Britain to support the United States in military action against Iran. But Tony Blair has backed President George Bush by warning that ruling out military action would send out a "message of weakness" to Iran.

Differences opened up yesterday between Mr Blair and the Foreign Secretary over growing alarm in the US at the refusal of Mr Bush to rule out military action. Mr Straw said on BBC Radio 4 that it was "inconceivable" that Britain would support a military strike against Tehran. Four hours later, Mr Blair refused to go that far when challenged to do so at Prime Minister's questions by the former minister, Michael Meacher.

Mr Blair accused Iran of fostering international terrorism, and said young people were signing up to be suicide bombers directed at US and UK targets. " I do not think this is the time to send a message of weakness," he said.

Mr Straw has told ministerial colleagues he does not believe that the Attorney General, Lord Goldsmith, would approve the legality of British action, because Iran does not pose a direct threat to Britain. Mr Straw also said it would be "nuts" to consider a nuclear strike.

The possibility of action against Iran threatens to resurrect the row over the basis on which Britain went to war in Iraq. The Attorney General became embroiled in the legal advice he gave to the Prime Minister over the war.

Clare Short, the former cabinet minister, said the Cabinet had never been shown the full legal advice and there were claims that Lord Goldsmith may have changed his view under pressure from Mr Blair.

Some Labour MPs say Mr Straw was wrong to rule out military action, and accuse him of bowing to pressure from the strong Muslim population in his Blackburn constituency.

But most Labour MPs support Mr Straw's strategy and would revolt if Mr Blair showed any sign of lending support to a US strike against Iran. Mr Straw was given tacit support at a meeting of European foreign ministers in Luxembourg last week.

France understands Mr Blair's argument that keeping the military option on the table would keep up the pressure on Iran. But it is to urge London to press the Bush administration to soften its approach so it no longer treats Iran as a "rogue state" but engages in a wider dialogue with Tehran on terrorism, the Middle East peace process and oil.

Yesterday there was a rare, informal meeting of US and Iranian embassy diplomats at the Commons organised by the Foreign Policy Centre think-tank to launch its pamphlet Understanding Iran.

Diplomatic contacts between Iran and the US have been infrequent since students occupied the US embassy in Tehran 26 years ago. Pam Telford, who handles proliferation issues for the US embassy, denied Washington had aggravated the problem by having no clear policy towards Iran, or by having double standards about which Asian states are allowed to have nuclear weapons.

The Iranian charge d'affaires, Hamid Reza Arefi, denied Iran intended to develop nuclear weapons.

© 2006 Independent News and Media Limited
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Old Friday, April 21, 2006
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Post

Breaking News - When all else fails and you're becoming Nixon 2.0, why not just nuke someone, and smirk?

20th April 2006 5:43
When all else fails and you're becoming Nixon 2.0, why not just nuke someone, and smirk?

Iran, You Ran, Let's Bomb Iran
When all else fails and you're becoming Nixon 2.0, why not just nuke someone, and smirk?

It's just like playing blackjack in Vegas.

Invariably, sitting right next to you is some guy, eyes shifty and body twitchy and making weird sounds with his mouth and smelling vaguely of sawdust and horse manure and dead dreams, with a huge pile of chips he is quickly turning into a very small pile of chips.
He is suffering. He is playing terribly, grumbling, sneering at the dealer, talking to the cards like they were his personal slutty harem ("C'mon you dumb bitches, do me right," etc.), complaining to his very angry God who is apparently no longer coming through for him. He is getting desperate. His pile is diminishing. He is sweating, glancing around, wondering where all his drunk fraternity friends scurried off to.
Soon he is down to his last chips. He makes one final stab, but his final bet tanks. He is out, the pile is gone.
He then does what every miserable, lunkheaded gambler does at this point: In a fit of alcoholic rage and demonic encouragement, he says, "Screw it" -- and digs into his pocket, pulls out his last remaining crumpled $1,000 bill and slaps it down on the table in one big final gesture meant to turn his fortunes around all at once, goddamn the wife at home and screw a decent meal and forget every ironclad rule of gambling because dammit the gods owe him and he's long overdue for a change in fortune. Yes. Right. Sure he is.
The smart players look at him like he's a wart on their elbow. The gods look at him like he's a brown fungal mold they forgot to let evolve. Everyone looks sidelong at him and sighs, waits for the inevitable.
Sure enough, the lug loses his big Hail Mary bet. He is broke. He cannot believe it. He curses the table, curses the whore cards, swears at the dealer for not treating him better, slams the rest of his drink and his face contorts and his hands shake and he stumbles off into the night, railing against his lousy luck, the gods, all of humanity. Same ol' situation, happening all over Vegas. And, of course, Washington, D.C.
Now, here he is, sitting right next to all the other countries at the Big Table, representing America, it's little Dubya Bush, stewing in his own juices, his poll numbers hovering right near Nixon levels during his darkest days, mumbling to himself, smelling vaguely of sawdust and horse manure and dead Social Security overhaul plans.
He is pockmarked by scandal, buffeted by storms of disapproval and infighting and nascent impeachment. He intentionally authorized the leak of security information merely to smear an Iraq war critic, he lied about WMD and lied about Saddam and lied about making the United States safer and lied about, well, just about everything, on top of launching the worst and most violent and most expensive, unwinnable war since Vietnam.

His formerly enormous pile of betting capital is down to a tiny lump, nothing like back when he had the table rigged and all the pit bosses worked for him and the pile was as big as a roomful of Texas cow pies. But now, fortune is frowning. In fact, fortune is white-hot furious at being so viciously molested, spit upon, raped lo these many years. The truth is coming out: Bush has now lost far, far more bets than he ever won.
What's to be done? Why, do what any grumbling, furious, confused, underqualified alcoholic gambler does: reach down deep and say, "Screw the nation and screw the odds and to hell with the rest of the planet," and pull out one more desperate, crumpled war from deep in your pants, slap it on the table and hear the world moan.
But this time, try to make it serious. Do not rule out the use of tactical nuclear weapons. Do not rule out another a massive air strike, ground troops, special forces, a strategy so intense it makes Iraq look like a jog in the park. Think of yourself as creating a masterful legacy, going down in history not as the guy who restored peace in the Middle East but as the guy who made it all far worse -- but who "saved" the world from Iran's nukes while protecting American oil interests. Yes? Can you smell the oily sanctimony in the air? Is God speaking to you again, telling you to damn the torpedoes and kill more Muslims? You are the chosen one, after all.
Sound far fetched? Don't think even Bush could be capable of using nukes to slap Iran? Perish the thought. All reports from underworld White House sources -- most notably by way of Sy Hersh's horrifying report in a recent New Yorker -- indicate that Dubya and his remaining team of war-happy flying monkeys have been secretly laying out plans to attack Iran for months, possibly even using tactical nuclear weapons to get at those deep Iranian bunkers, all because Iran just celebrated its entrance into the world's "nuclear club" by finally enriching some uranium (a critical component of nuclear weapons) for the first time. Cookies all around!
No matter that most analysts say that Iran is far from being a true threat, that a nuclear Iran is at least a good decade away, if not longer. No matter that 10 years is a good long time to work on ways to force Iran out of the game -- via negotiation, diplomacy, sanctions -- without unleashing another river of never-ending violence.
With Bush in power, there is no waiting. There is no thought of avoiding another hideous war at all costs. To the Bush hawks, diplomacy is a failed joke. Negotiation is for intellectuals and tofu pacifists. In the Dubya world view, the planet is a roiling cauldron of nasty threats, crammed with terrorists and hateful Muslims and foreign demons suddenly growling on our doorstep when, curiously, they really weren't there before he stumbled into power. Amazing how that works.
It is now seven months before what could be a radically influential congressional election, a vote that could very well give power back to the Democrats, who will (with any luck) waste no time launching a number of long-overdue investigations into Bush's failed war and the various scandals and lies and fiscal abuses that led us all here.
For Dubya, now is the time. One last, desperate gamble. Slam that last drink, scrunch up your face, screw the rules and let the bombs fly. What, you don't think he could do it? Don't think a nuclear attack on Iran is possible? You haven't looked into the tiny, ink-black eyes of Dick Cheney lately. You haven't seen Rumsfeld's arrogant sneer, seen Bush looking confused and lost, wondering where all his "capital" went, desperately hunting for a legacy and finding only irresponsibility and self-righteousness and death.

But hell, as we already know, that's good enough for him.
plz pray,
sardarzada
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Old Friday, April 21, 2006
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Post Armed Forces Bill, 2006

19th April 2006 21:54
Armed Forces Bill, 2006
The Armed Forces Bill is being discussed in the UK Parliament. Section 8 introduces a new tougher definition of desertion: soldiers who intend to avoid serving in a "military occupation of a foreign country or territory" can be imprisoned for life.
NO life sentence for soldiers who refuse to be occupiers!

The Armed Forces Bill – now going through the UK Parliament – would impose harsh penalties on soldiers who refuse to take part in military occupations.

Section 8 –which has hardly been mentioned in the media -- introduces a new tougher definition of desertion: soldiers who intend to avoid serving in a “military occupation of a foreign country or territory” can be imprisoned for life.
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This major redrafting of military law has been introduced at a time when the number of soldiers absconding from the British Army has trebled since the invasion of Iraq – a clear attack on the growing movement of men and women in the military who refuse to be part of wars, in Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran. . . . It contravenes the Nuremberg Charter which enshrined in international law the responsibility that each of us has to refuse to obey illegal and immoral orders from any government. At the same time the UK Defence Secretary is urging that the Geneva Convention be rewritten to legalise pre-emptive military action.

Poll after poll has demonstrated overwhelming public rejection of the war and occupation of Iraq.

This has been reflected in the actions and views of troops who have refused to go, or go back, to Iraq. Military families, mostly mothers, have campaigned against the killing and maiming of their own loved ones and of the civilian population in Iraq and elsewhere, and demanded that troops be brought back home from a war nobody wants.

We are outraged that Section 8 of this Bill with its blatant violation of the human rights of soldiers and in particular of their right to conscientious objection -- is proceeding quickly through Parliament without any public debate.

Please act now to stop this terrible miscarriage of justice from becoming law.

NOTES
• See Independent on Sunday, of 19 March 2006
http://www.refusingtokill.net/UKGulf...avetrebled.htm
• Nuremberg Charter, Article 8: “The fact that the Defendant acted pursuant to order of his Government or of a superior shall not free him from responsibility . . .”.

Payday is a network of men working with the Global Women’s Strike
Invest in Caring not Killing.
See our website www.refusingtokill.net
Information: 0207 209 4751 payday@paydaynet.org">payday@paydaynet.org

WHAT YOU CAN DO

• If you live in the UK, write to your MP demanding that they vote against Section 8.

Find your MP and email her/him using www.writeToThem.com or write to the House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA (see model letter below or write your own).

• If you live outside the UK, write to the British Embassy or High Commission to let them know your opposition to Section 8 of the Bill (see model letter below or write your own) and cc payday@paydaynet.org">payday@paydaynet.org. Details can be found at
http://www.fco.gov.uk/servlet/Front?...=1007029395231

• Sign the petition at Petition on Line
http://www.petitiononline.com/UKArmedF/petition.html

• Write to the press, newsletters, websites asking them to publicise this attack on human rights.

• Tell all your contacts and networks – anti-war, religious, community, trade union –- about it. Ask them to contact your MLP, the British Embassy/High Commission, the press and to sign the petition.

MODEL LETTER

Dear

I understand that the Armed Forces Bill 2006 is being discussed in the British Parliament.

Section 8 of the Bill introduces a new definition of desertion, according to which soldiers who intend to avoid serving in a “military occupation of a foreign country or territory” can be imprisoned for life (see Sub-sections 3c, 4a and 5a). This is introduced at a time when the number of soldiers absconding from the British Army has trebled since the invasion of Iraq.

I consider Section 8 to be an attack on the human rights, including the crucial right to conscientious objection, of individuals in the military who refuse to be part of present or future wars, and who have a responsibiity, enshrined in the Nuremburg charter, to refuse to obey illegal and immoral orders. I am outraged that this militaristic Section is going through Parliament without public awareness, let alone discussion.

Poll after poll has shown public rejection of the war and the occupation of Iraq in Britain and everywhere. This has been reflected in the actions and views of troops who have refused to go to Iraq and military families who have demanded that the troops be brought back home.

I urge you to request the withdrawal of Section 8 of the Armed Forces Bill.

Yours sincerely,
Payday
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Old Friday, April 21, 2006
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Post Prominent U.S. Physicists Send Letter to President Bush, Call Nuclear Weapons Against

19th April 2006 213
Prominent U.S. Physicists Send Letter to President Bush, Call Nuclear Weapons Against Iran 'Gravely Irresponsible'

By Kim McDonald

Thirteen of the nation’s most prominent physicists have written a letter to President Bush, calling U.S. plans to reportedly use nuclear weapons against Iran “gravely irresponsible” and warning that such action would have “disastrous consequences for the security of the United States and the world.”



The physicists include five Nobel laureates, a recipient of the National Medal of Science and three past presidents of the American Physical Society, the nation’s preeminent professional society for physicists.



Their letter was prompted by recent articles in the Washington Post, New Yorker and other publications that one of the options being considered by Pentagon planners and the White House in a military confrontation with Iran includes the use of nuclear bunker busters against underground facilities. These reports were neither confirmed nor denied by White House and Pentagon officials.



The letter was initiated by Jorge Hirsch, a professor of physics at the University of California , San Diego , who last fall put together a petition signed by more than 1,800 physicists that repudiated new U.S. nuclear weapons policies that include preemptive use of nuclear weapons against non-nuclear adversaries (http://physics.ucsd.edu/petition/). Hirsch has also published 15 articles in recent months (http://antiwar.com/hirsch/) documenting the dangers associated with a potential U.S. nuclear strike on Iran .



“We are members of the profession that brought nuclear weapons into existence, and we feel strongly that it is our professional duty to contribute our efforts to prevent their misuse,” says Hirsch. "Physicists know best about the devastating effects of the weapons they created, and these eminent physicists speak for thousands of our colleagues.”



“The fact that the existence of this plan has not been denied by the Administration should be a cause of great alarm, even if it is only one of several plans being considered,” he adds. “The public should join these eminent scientists in demanding that the Administration publicly renounces such a misbegotten option against a non-nuclear country like Iran .”



The letter, which is available at http://physics.ucsd.edu/petition/physicistsletter.html, points out that “nuclear weapons are unique among weapons of mass destruction,” and that nuclear weapons in today's arsenals have a total power of more than 200,000 times the explosive energy of the bomb that leveled Hiroshima, which caused the deaths of more than 100,000 people.



It notes that there are no sharp lines between small and large nuclear weapons, nor between nuclear weapons targeting facilities and those targeting armies or cities, and that the use by the United States of nuclear weapons after 60 years of non-use will make the use of nuclear weapons by others more likely.



“Once the U.S. uses a nuclear weapon again, it will heighten the probability that others will too,” the physicists write. “In a world with many more nuclear nations and no longer a ‘taboo’ against the use of nuclear weapons, there will be a greatly enhanced risk that regional conflicts could expand into global nuclear war, with the potential to destroy our civilization.”



The letter echoes the main objection of last fall’s physicists’ petition, stressing that the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty will be irreversibly damaged by the use or even the threat of use of nuclear weapons by a nuclear nation against a non-nuclear one, with disastrous consequences for the security of the United States and the world.



“It is gravely irresponsible for the U.S. as the greatest superpower to consider courses of action that could eventually lead to the widespread destruction of life on the planet. We urge the administration to announce publicly that it is taking the nuclear option off the table in the case of all non-nuclear adversaries, present or future, and we urge the American people to make their voices heard on this matter.”



The 13 physicists who coauthored the letter are: Philip Anderson, professor of physics at Princeton University and Nobel Laureate in Physics; Michael Fisher, professor of physics at the Institute for Physical Science and Technology, University of Maryland and Wolf Laureate in Physics; David Gross, professor of theoretical physics and director of the Kavli Institute of Physics at the University of California, Santa Barbara and Nobel Laureate in Physics; Jorge Hirsch, professor of physics at the University of California, San Diego; Leo Kadanoff, professor of physics and mathematics at the University of Chicago and recipient of the National Medal of Science; Joel Lebowitz, professor of mathematics and physics, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey and Boltzmann Medalist; Anthony Leggett, professor of physics, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Nobel Laureate, Physics; Eugen Merzbacher, professor of physics, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and former president, American Physical Society; Douglas Osheroff, professor of physics and applied physics, Stanford University and Nobel Laureate, Physics; Andrew Sessler, former director of Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory and former president, American Physical Society; George Trilling, professor of physics, University of California, Berkeley, and former president, American Physical Society; Frank Wilczek, professor of physics, MIT and Nobel Laureate, Physics; Edward Witten, professor of physics, Institute for Advanced Study and Fields Medalist.



The physicists are sending copies of their letter to their elected representatives, requesting that the issue be urgently addressed in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives.
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Angry Duma members: Russia should support Iran against US threats

19th April 2006 188
Duma members: Russia should support Iran against US threats

Iran-Nuclear-Russia

A number of the Russian state Duma members here Wednesday said that Russia should support Iran politically against the threats and pressures of the US and West on the pretext of the progress in the country's nuclear sector.

Speaking at Duma open session, Deputy Alexei Mitrofanov called for Moscow's definite support for Iran against the US and the pressures exerted by it on account of Iran's nuclear activities.

Turning to Iran's political, economic and regional cooperation with his country, he called on the Russian government to take decisive measures in order to solve the issue and prevent a new crisis near Russia's borders.

Meanwhile, he called on the government to use Russia's veto right in case the nuclear dossier is to be examined by the UN Security Council and military option as well as sanction against Iran are decided.

For her part, another Duma member, Tamara Plotnikova, in an exclusive interview with IRNA, expressed her concern about the negative trend of the nuclear dossier currently underway and said that the US needs the support of international bodies to avoid any scandal in Iraq.

Turning to the US warmongering approach towards the end of the 20th and beginning of the 21st centuries, Plotnikova said that if the other UNSC permanent members cooperate with the US in aggressive plots, this will be treachery to the goals of the United Nations.

Speaking in favor of Russia's support for Iran's opposition to solving the nuclear issue by resorting to force, she said that Duma deputies will support the government's measures aiming to protect Russia's national interests and international security.

She expressed doubt about the correct approach of her country and said, "I am surprised that every country determined to cooperate with Russia faces the US opposition."
The deputy called US administrators `hypocrites and profiteers' and said that the Russian people do not trust in what is declared by the US.
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Post US demands end to Russia-Iran nuclear cooperation

19th April 2006 184
US demands end to Russia-Iran nuclear cooperation

MOSCOW (AFP) - The United States demanded an end to Russia's cooperation with Iran in building the Islamic republic's first civilian nuclear power station.

We also think it is important for countries to stop cooperation with Iran on nuclear issues, even on civilian nuclear issues like the Bushehr facility," US Under Secretary of State Nicholas Burns told journalists in Moscow.

Burns made clear that he was talking about various countries' work with Iran's nuclear industry. However, Russia is Iran's biggest nuclear partner and is building the country's first atomic power station at Bushehr.

"A number of countries are continuing to permit the export of dual-use materials that could be used, and we think in some cases are being used, to help the growth of Iran's nuclear industry," Burns said.

"It is the view of my government that it would be appropriate now for those individual governments to stop that practice and no longer permit it."
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