IRAN | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


IRAN

Jan 31 11:24

War Against Iran Becoming Ever More Likely

Donald Trump’s domestic troubles, combined with the current makeup of his foreign policy team, provide a confluence of circumstances, perhaps a perfect storm, to pull the United States into a war with Iran.

Indeed, the walls are closing in around Trump. The president’s poll numbers—once seemingly impervious to an already unprecedentedly tumultuous administration—are sinking, even among his most ardent supporters, as he increasingly boxes himself into the corner of a government shutdown for which the public says he’s largely responsible. At the same time, impeachment looms on the horizon. House Democratic committee chairs are winding up for some serious investigations into a whole range of alleged misdeeds by the president and some of his Cabinet appointments, and Robert Mueller is wrapping up his investigation into Trump’s highly questionable ties to Russia.

Jan 31 11:09

Trump delivers astonishing insult to his 'naive' top intelligence chiefs as he tells them to 'go back to SCHOOL' after they contradicted him on Iran, North Korea and ISIS

President Donald Trump on Wednesday suggested his intelligence chiefs should 'go back to school' and lectured their 'naive' assessments on Iran after they sharply contradicted his foreign policy claims, particularly on North Korea and ISIS.

The president's response to his chiefs testimony before the Senate a day earlier was an unprecedented Twitter dressing down of America's top intelligence officials, where he called them 'extremely passive and naive,' said they were flat out 'wrong' on Iran, and suggested 'Intelligence should go back to school!.'

He railed against FBI directory Christopher Wray, CIA director Gina Haspel, and Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats, who painted a different picture of America's relationship with its foreign partners when they testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Tuesday.

Jan 31 10:26

US Intel Chief: Israel Strikes in Syria May Lead to Regional War

US Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats told the Senate Intelligence Committee on Tuesday that he believes Iran wants to “avoid a major armed conflict with Israel,” but that continued Israeli attacks on targets in Syria may ultimately spark an Iranian retaliation.

“Israeli strikes that result in Iranian casualties increase the likelihood of Iranian conventional retaliation against Israel.” Coats added that Israeli strikes are raising growing concerns that the “conflict will escalate.”

Coats’ comments actually reflect an assessment from Israeli President Reuven Rivlin made just a day before, that he believes Iran will “retaliate with greater force” against northern Israel, and that Israel can no longer trust in “understandings” with Russia to avoid Iran retaliating against attacks.

Jan 31 09:54

Trump chastises intel chiefs after they contradict him on Iran and claims of foreign policy success

President Donald Trump chastised his own intelligence officials Wednesday morning for being soft on Iran a day after they contradicted numerous administration claims of foreign policy success.

On Tuesday, the nation's top intelligence official, who was appointed by Trump, told Senate lawmakers that the US intelligence community does not believe Iran is currently undertaking "key activities" needed to produce a nuclear bomb -- an assessment at odds with longtime administration claims that Iran is an immediate nuclear threat.

Jan 30 12:49

Trump Warns Europeans Not to Defy US Sanctions Against Iran

With reports that the European Union is close to establishing its trade vehicle for facilitating trade with Iran, the Trump Administration has issued a statement warning them not to defy the US sanctions. in any way.

The US reimposed sanctions on Iran after withdrawing from the P5+1 nuclear deal. EU nations did not withdraw from the deal, and companies are still allowed to trade with Iran. This, however, is difficult because US sanctions are scaring most banks away.

The EU solution is a clearing house for the trades, which allow companies to pay for Iranian goods, and Iran to pay EU companies for services, without any money crossing borders, cutting the banks out of it.

US officials are threatening stiff fines and penalties if the plan goes forward. Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) says the choice is between doing business with Iran or the US. The EU, however, is betting that the US cannot afford to simply cut off Europe entirely over Iran.

Jan 30 12:46

Iran strikes economic deals with Syria during VP visit

Iran struck economic and trade deals with Syria on Monday, as it widens its role there after helping Syrian President Bashar al-Assad reclaim most of his country.

Tehran has reached “very important agreements on banking cooperation” with Syria, Iranian Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri said in the Syrian capital Damascus.

Iran will also help repair power stations across Syria and set up a new plant in the coastal province of Latakia, he added.

During Syria’s eight-year conflict, Tehran has dispatched forces and allied Shi’ite militias, including Hezbollah, to provide Damascus with vital military support. Experts say Tehran is now looking to reap a financial dividend.

Jan 30 12:45

Iran increasing capabilities after Trump JCPOA pullout, Haspel says, acknowledging Tehran compliance

Iran is preparing to “increase” its capabilities to deal with repercussions of the unilateral US withdrawal from the 2015 landmark nuclear agreement, the CIA chief says, also attesting to Tehran’s compliance with the international accord.

Testifying before the US Senate Intelligence Committee on Tuesday, CIA Director Gina Haspel said Iran was “making some preparations that would increase their ability to take a step back” from the landmark deal.

“At the moment, technically they are in compliance, but we do see them debating among themselves because they haven’t seen the economic benefits they hoped for from the deal,” she added.

Jan 30 12:44

Iran, Syria must step up joint efforts in face of Western economic war: President Assad

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad says the recent signing of several agreements between Iran and Syria will pave the way for the two countries to boost their steadfastness in the face of an economic war being waged against them by certain Western countries.

In a meeting with Iran’s First Vice President Es’haq Jahangiri in Damascus on Tuesday, Assad said Iran and Syria should make more joint efforts to thwart the plots of those countries, which are aimed at weakening the two countries, hindering their independent decision-making and breaking the will of their peoples.

He added that Iran and Syria have always stood by each other during hard times and called for Iranian state and private sectors to play a more active role in the reconstruction plans of the war-stricken country.

Assad was referring to the key economic agreements signed between the two countries on Monday in the presence of Jahangiri and Syrian Prime Minister Imad Khamis.

Jan 30 12:43

Iran faces no restrictions for increasing range of missiles: Shamkhani

Iran’s top security official says the country faces no scientific restrictions for increasing the range of its missiles, but that it currently has no plans to do so and is only focused on improving the accuracy of its missile technology.

Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani made the remarks in an address to a national summit on space technology at the Iran University of Science and Technology, in Tehran on Tuesday.

He said that Western and Israeli media have been leading a propaganda campaign against Iran by linking the country’s space program to its missile power.

“Iran has no scientific and operational restrictions for increasing the range of its military missiles, and it is only continuously working on boosting the precision [of the missiles] based on its defense doctrine, and has no intention to increase their range,” he added.

Jan 30 12:42

Iran, Syria shaping up Mideast with 'strategic' deal

Iran and Syria have signed 11 agreements, including a “long-term strategic economic cooperation” deal, in a sign of changing winds in the Middle East which is shaping up to new realities.

Syrian Prime Minister Imad Khamis said Syria and Iran signed a "unique" and “historic” agreement which includes industry, trade and agriculture, calling it “a message to the world on the reality of Syrian-Iranian cooperation.”

Iran has played a crucial part in helping Syria overcome more than seven years of foreign-orchestrated war. However, the agreements signed during a visit to Damascus by Vice President Es’haq Jahangiri Monday signal Iran’s deeper involvement in post-war Syria, notably in the country’s reconstruction.

Jan 30 11:40

Trump Warns Europeans Not To Defy US Sanctions Against Iran

With reports that the European Union is close to establishing its trade vehicle for facilitating trade with Iran, the Trump Administration has issued a statement warning them not to defy the US sanctions, in any way.

“The choice is whether to do business with Iran or the United States," Sen. Tom Cotton (Republican-Arkansas), told the AP.

“I hope our European allies choose wisely.”

The US reimposed sanctions on Iran after withdrawing from the P5+1 nuclear deal. EU nations did not withdraw from the deal, and companies are still allowed to trade with Iran. This, however, is difficult because US sanctions are scaring most banks away.

The EU solution is a clearing house for the trades, which allow companies to pay for Iranian goods, and Iran to pay EU companies for services, without any money crossing borders, cutting the banks out of it.

Jan 30 09:08

US UNVEILS CRIMINAL CHARGES AGAINST CHINA'S HUAWEI FOR VIOLATING IRAN SANCTIONS

The United States announced criminal charges against China’s Huawei Technologies Co Ltd, escalating a fight with the world’s biggest telecommunications equipment maker just days before trade talks take place between Washington and Beijing.

The Justice Department charged Huawei and its chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou on Monday with conspiring to violate US sanctions on Iran by doing business with Tehran through a subsidiary it tried to hide, which Reuters first reported on in 2012.

Huawei is the world’s largest manufacturer of cellular-tower electronics and the third-biggest smartphone producer.

In a separate case, the Justice department said Huawei stole robotic technology from carrier T-Mobile US Inc. Huawei has said that the two companies settled their disputes in 2017.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

What concerns me deeply, is how quickly trade wars can escalate into shooting wars.

A shooting war against China would be a very terrible thing for the US government to do to be right now.

Jan 30 09:01

Trump rips into US intel's Iran report, calling spies ‘wrong’ & ‘naive’

Iran is the trouble maker in the Middle East? Looks more like the US,Israel and Saudi and their fellow travelers.

Donald J. Trump
?
@realDonaldTrump
The Intelligence people seem to be extremely passive and naive when it comes to the dangers of Iran. They are wrong! When I became President Iran was making trouble all over the Middle East, and beyond. Since ending the terrible Iran Nuclear Deal, they are MUCH different, but....

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5:50 AM - Jan 30, 2019
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Jan 29 15:41

McCain May Be Dead, but ‘Bomb, Bomb, Bomb Iran’ Still Resounds

With Bolton and Pompeo at the helm of Trump’s foreign policy agenda, John McCain’s Bomb, Bomb, Bomb Iran policy is alive and well.

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Jan 29 14:43

SYRIAN WAR REPORT – JAN. 29, 2019: HUNDREDS KILLED IN CLASHES BETWEEN PRO-IRANIAN, PRO-RUSSIAN FORCES

A fake-news story about large-scale clashes between pro-Russian and pro-Iranian factions in Syria is making jitters in English- and Russian-language mainstream media outlets. According to these reports citing anonymous sources and each other, “the pro-Russian Tiger Forces and 5th Assault Corps” clashed with “the pro-Iranian 4th Division” near the villages of “Shahta, Bredidg, Innab and Haydariye” in northern Hama.

Most of the reports claimed that there were casualties among the sides providing “precise” numbers varying from a dozen to 200 fighters from the both sides. No source was able to provide details into how clashes had started but the versions are varying from “some differences” to “a campaign to limit Iranian influence”.

Jan 29 07:26

How the US took more than a decade to build its case against Huawei

The indictment alleged Huawei’s long-running scheme to deceive the US and numerous global banks about its business in Iran

The United States has been investigating Huawei Technologies for possible violations of trade sanctions since at least 2007, when FBI agents questioned its founder in New York about the Chinese telecommunication equipment manufacturer’s business activities in Iran.

The founder, whose name was redacted in the indictment filed on Monday in the US, was identified in the documents as “Individual-1”. He said at the time that Huawei was compliant with US export laws and did not deal directly with any Iranian company, according to the 13-count indictment unsealed in federal court in Brooklyn, New York.

Shenzhen-based Huawei was founded in 1987 by Ren Zhengfei, who built a small vendor of telephone switches into the world’s largest telecoms equipment maker and second-biggest smartphone supplier that is forecast to earn US$125 billion in revenue this year.

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Jan 29 05:31

U.S. Hits a Wall in Efforts to Turn the Screws on Iran

The Trump administration is pushing to re-open a special investigation into the military dimensions of Iran’s past nuclear work. But it’s not gaining traction among the international officials who can make it happen.

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(*no tag for SPINNING OUR WHEELS)

Jan 29 04:35

ISIL Ruling in Region Prevented by Iran's Dedicated Efforts

Iranian First Vice-President Eshaq Jahangiri said that his country's serious fight against the terrorist groups blocked their attempts to prevail their rule over the region.

"The terrorist groups in the region were after introducing a violent face of Islam and they were created in certain regions like Syria and Iraq," Jahangiri said, addressing a ceremony in Tehran on Sunday.

"Had Iran not stepped onto the scene, today the ISIL terrorist group would have established its power and its rule in the region," he added.

>>>

Jan 29 04:01

Iran Vows to Keep Supporting Syria in Reconstruction

Iran's First Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri, who is heading a high-ranking delegation to Syria, hailed the victories of the Arab country in fighting terrorists, and reassured that Tehran will keep supporting Damascus in the reconstruction phase after the war.

Jahangiri said that Iran is honored to be spearheading the anti-terror campaign in the region while felicitating the Syrian government and nation for their achievements in the fight against terrorism.
***
Iran's vice president expressed hope that terrorists would be completely eliminated in the Middle East and said, "The international community and the Europeans should know that if it were not for the sacrifices of the Syrian government and people as well as the country's allies, ISIL terrorists would establish a government in the region and would turn into a big and insolvable problem for global security."

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Jan 28 11:24

McCain May Be Dead, But "Bomb, Bomb, Bomb Iran" Still Resounds

In 2007, when making a speech during his bid for the presidency of the United States, the late Senator John McCain spoke about Iran’s supposed nuclear weapons’ programme and when questioned as to whether there might be US reaction to such allegations responded by singing “That old Beach Boys song, Bomb Iran... bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb.”

This jovial retort about killing people by bombing them was not surprising to those who remembered that during the US war on Vietnam McCain was shot down on a mission to bomb a power generation plant in Hanoi, the capital of North Vietnam, in the course of the entrancingly-named Operation Rolling Thunder. If he hadn’t been shot down before he released his bombs there would almost certainly have been civilian casualties and deaths. Power stations in cities are not manned by soldiers, after all, and around the Hanoi plant there were houses that would doubtless be struck by errant bombs.

Jan 28 11:22

US Pullout From Syria Could Leave Troops at al-Tanf to ‘Challenge Iran’

As US officials continue to reiterate their intention to withdraw from Syria, but it seems that is coming with some caveats. Now, reports are that the end vision is to keep a few hundred US troops at the al-Tanf base, just to “challenge Iran.”

On the Iraq-Syria-Jordan border, al-Tanf was originally meant to prop up rebels on the Jordan border. Ultimately, it just became an excuse for the US to attack Shi’ite militias that got “too close” to the base, generally presented as pro-Iranian forces.

Making that the new face of US operations in Syria is liable to fuel more legal challenges. When troops were there to fight ISIS, the legal basis was nominally the 2001 Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF). There is no AUMF for confronting Iran in a country where the government never authorized the US to be in the first place.

Jan 28 11:21

France tells Iran new sanctions loom if missile talks fail

France is ready to impose further sanctions on Iran if no progress is made in talks over its ballistic missile programme, the French foreign minister said on Friday.

Jan 28 11:20

IRAN ANGRILY BLAMES RUSSIA FOR DISRUPTING S-300 SYSTEM

Official news sources in Iran publicly attacked the Russian government, blaming them for deliberately disrupting the S-300 air defense systems during the recent flare-up between their forces in Syria and Israel.

Meanwhile, Russia announced that the S-300 air defense systems in Syria are not ready for operation.

Jan 28 11:16

Video: Israel, “Licensed to Kill”

“With its totally unexpected action, Israel has officialised attacks against military targets in Syria, and has warned Syrian authorities not to exact vengeance on Israel” – this was how the Italian medias reported yesterday’s Israeli attack in Syria with cruise missiles and smart bombs. “This is a message to the Russians, who, together with Iran, are enabling the survival of Assad’s power structure”, commented the Corriere della Sera.

Nobody questions the “right” of Israel to attack a sovereign state in order to impose the government it ought to have, after eight years during which the USA, NATO and the Gulf monarchies tried to demolish it with Israël, as they did in 2011 with the State of Libya.

Jan 28 11:13

Iran ‘may adopt offensive military tactics to defend interests’

Iran’s chief military commander says the country may adopt offensive military tactics in order to protect its interests while continuing to adhere to its broad doctrine of defense.

Major General Mohammad Baqeri, the chairman of the Chiefs of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces, said on Sunday that the Iranian military would adopt offensive tactics as and when they were deemed necessary.

“There is, among the country’s broad strategies, a defensive strategy — we defend the independence and territorial integrity and national interests of the country,” Maj. Gen. Baqeri said. “This, however, does not mean that we would be acting exclusively defensively and passively in our operational-level and tactical approaches.”

He said Iran did not have any intention of seizing foreign territory or harming foreign interests, yet, “to protect our national achievements and interests, we may adopt an offensive approach.”

Jan 28 11:01

American anchor for Iranian TV says she was mistreated during US detention

An American newscaster for the Iranian government’s Press TV network, who was detained by the US government without being charged, has complained of mistreatment as she was held as a material witness in a criminal case.

“This is something that needs to be condemned across the table,” said Marzieh Hashemi, whose 10-day detention ended when she was released late on Wednesday. “It is not about me. It is about the US justice department and government – that they feel that they can just take people’s rights away, sweep them off of the streets, hold them in the name of being a material witness and not charging them … indefinitely.”

Hashemi’s detention and the limited details initially made available by authorities have prompted condemnation in the US and abroad, especially among press freedom and Muslim-advocacy groups including the Committee to Protect Journalists and the Council on American-Islamic Relations.

Jan 28 10:58

Egypt Issues Ultimatum to Hamas on Cooperation with Iran

Israel Hayom has learned that alongside Jerusalem’s decision to postpone the transfer of Qatari funds to Hamas following the escalation on Israel’s border with the Gaza Strip, Egypt has issued the terrorist organization’s political bureau chief Ismail Haniyeh (pictured) an ultimatum.

Cairo has made it clear that Haniyeh must decide whether “Hamas takes its orders from Tehran or continues to implement the understandings for calm” formulated by the head of Egyptian intelligence Abbas Kamel.

A senior Egyptian intelligence official told Israel Hayom that senior Hamas members, chief among them Haniyeh, had contacted Kamel with the request that Israel be sent the message that “Hamas was not involved in the grave events on the border.”

Jan 28 10:39

Army Deputy Commander: Iran Not to Wait for Enemies to Attack

Iranian Army Deputy Commander Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari underlined that the Ground Force's Eqtedar 97 wargames staged in the weekend showed that the country is fully prepared to repel any aggression.
"Eqtedar 97 drills proved that the Army's Ground Force is capable of defending the country's borders. It was necessary in the wargames to display that we do not and will not sit idle for attacks," General Sayyari said in an interview with the state TV on Saturday night.

He stressed that the Iranian Ground Forces are capable of making the enemies regret their deeds whenever necessary, adding, "This is exactly the military doctrine which relies on deterrence power."

The Iranian Army’s Ground Force held the last stage of its massive military wargames in the Central province of Isfahan on Saturday.

The two-day drills, code-named Eqtedar 97, had kicked off upon an order by Commander of the Iranian Army Ground Force Brigadier General Kiomars Heidari on Friday morning.

Jan 28 09:53

US Has Hit a Wall in Anti-Iran Push

The Trump Administration has been engaged in an anti-Iran diplomatic push abroad since withdrawing from the P5+1 nuclear deal, but seems to be hitting a major wall in that push at the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), in charge of enforcing the deal.

In 2015, the P5+1 deal was reached, and the IAEA closed decades of investigations into Iran’s past nuclear activities. Since US officials are no longer honoring the deal, they want the IAEA to reopen those investigations.

The basis for this are claims from two US-based groups that were always opposed to any deal with Iran, arguing that they have evidence (from Israel) that Iran lied. The hope among US officials is that reopening the probes would further undermine the deal, and might even convince the EU to dishonor the pact as well.

Jan 27 15:24

Iran announces oil discovery in untapped region

Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh has told the media that the national oil company NIOC struck light sweet oil in a hitherto untapped oil region.

“This is the first time we’ve reached oil in the Abadan region,” Zanganeh said, adding that the grade was very light and sweet, but giving no details regarding the amount of reserves contained in the reservoir.

Jan 27 08:42

Senior Iranian MP Slams Russia for Keeping Syria S-300s Air Defenses Inactive During Israeli Strikes

A senior Iranian lawmaker has strongly criticized Russia for deactivating its S-300 missile defence system deployed in Syria during the recent Israeli airstrikes on what Tel Aviv claims were Iranian positions in the Arab country.

Chairman of the Iranian Parliament’s National Security and Foreign Policy Commission Heshmatollah Falahatpishe says that had the systems operated properly, Israel could not easily carry out its airstrikes on Syria.

Jan 26 12:19

US Attack on Iran Would Turn Into Protracted Conflict, Engulf Mid East – Scholar

The Trump administration is unlikely to engage in a direct confrontation with the Islamic Republic of Iran, Mojtaba Jelalzadeh, an international policy specialist at the Islamic Azad University told Sputnik, commenting on the White House's alleged search for options to strike Iran in 2018.

Iran is ready to repel any attack, but it will come at a price for Tehran, Mojtaba Jelalzadeh, an international policy specialist at the Tehran-based Islamic Azad University, told Sputnik Persian.

On 13 January the Wall Street Journal broke that the John Bolton-led National Security Council (NSC) had requested that the Pentagon outline options for a potential strike on Iran back in 2018, in response to September attacks on the US Embassy in Iraq, launched by a military group allegedly aligned with Tehran.

Jan 26 12:16

Iran's Army launches drill to practice 'offensive' tactics

The Iranian Army’s ground forces have kicked off a massive military maneuver to showcase their rapid deployment capabilities.

Brigadier General Kiomars Heidari, the commander of the Iranian Army's Ground Force, inaugurated the two-day Eghtedar 97 drills in the central province of Isfahan on Friday morning.

The drill is aimed at assessing new structural changes to the Army's ground forces with over 12,000 forces participating to exercise state-of-the-art offensive tactics.

Armored vehicles, artillery units, rapid reaction forces, mechanized infantry, electronic warfare, telecommunications and UAVs were deployed to the vast maneuver area.

Jan 26 11:13

US Pullout From Syria Could Leave Troops at al-Tanf to ‘Challenge Iran’

As US officials continue to reiterate their intention to withdraw from Syria, but it seems that is coming with some caveats. Now, reports are that the end vision is to keep a few hundred US troops at the al-Tanf base, just to “challenge Iran.”

On the Iraq-Syria-Jordan border, al-Tanf was originally meant to prop up rebels on the Jordan border. Ultimately, it just became an excuse for the US to attack Shi’ite militias that got “too close” to the base, generally presented as pro-Iranian forces.

Making that the new face of US operations in Syria is liable to fuel more legal challenges. When troops were there to fight ISIS, the legal basis was nominally the 2001 Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF). There is no AUMF for confronting Iran in a country where the government never authorized the US to be in the first place.

Jan 26 10:52

Marzieh Hashemi talks to Press TV after released from U.S. jail

Jan 26 09:18

IRAN ANNOUNCES OIL DISCOVERY IN UNTAPPED REGION

Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh has told the media that the national oil company NIOC struck light sweet oil in a hitherto untapped oil region.
“This is the first time we’ve reached oil in the Abadan region,” Zanganeh said, adding that the grade was very light and sweet, but giving no details regarding the amount of reserves contained in the reservoir.

Iran has continued to pursue new oil production opportunities despite US sanctions that have reduced its crude oil exports significantly although probably not as significantly, to date, as planned. As of December, Iran was shipping some 1.3 million bpd abroad, the International Energy Agency said in its latest Oil Market Report.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Looks like ,yet AGAIN, President Trump's sanctions on Iran are crumbling catastrophically, very much like the thoroughly lousy asphalt roads (obviously awarded to the lowest bidders here on Oahu) to which its drivers are subjected daily).

Not only that, but in his "mega-sanction-blitz", he has succeeded, rather splendidly, to drive China, Iran, and Russia closer together economically and politically; and if that was NOT his design intent, he had better wash the chalk off the blackboard, and start from scratch, and quickly.

Jan 25 13:57

AMERICAN-IRANIAN TV ANCHOR MARZIEH HASHEMI RELEASED FROM FBI CUSTODY WITHOUT CHARGE

U.S. citizen Marzieh Hashemi, an anchor on Iran’s English-language service Press TV, has been released without charge after being illegally detained for ten days by the FBI.

Hashemi was arrested earlier this month while boarding an internal U.S. flight from St. Louis to Denver where she had been filming a documentary on the Black Lives Matter movement. The 59-year-old African American is a convert to Islam and has been living in Iran for the past several years.

Her arrest prompted protests across the world after it emerged she had not been charged with a crime, as well as reports that she had been denied Halal food and had her hijab forcibly removed while in detention.

“Marzieh and her family will not allow this to be swept under the carpet,” the woman’s family said in a statement shortly after her release. They “still have serious grievances [and] they want assurances that this won’t happen to any Muslim – or any other person – ever again.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

What in the name were those US officials who ordered her arrest thinking?!?

Was it to simply attempt to scare her into being quiet on a particular issue?!?

Because if that was their design intent, this has backfired spectacularly, and all the world is coming to her defence; messing with the wrong lady does have consequences, and she hasn't even begun to talk about her imprisonment.

Jan 25 12:33

TV anchor says US jailed her to send a message

An Iranian television anchorwoman believes the US government jailed her as a witness in order to send a message.

Marzieh Hashemi told The Associated Press on Thursday she suspects she was jailed because of her work as a journalist and her beliefs.

She said she sees her detention as the U.S. government telling her to "watch your step" but won't be intimidated.

Hashemi was released Wednesday after being detained for 10 days as a material witness in an ongoing grand jury investigation.

Jan 25 12:33

Iran firms defy sanctions by signing $1 billion in oil deals

Iranian companies have signed $1 billion in contracts for enhanced recovery at nine aging oilfields of the country which is now left to its own devices in the face of the most restrictive US sanctions ever.

Minister of Petroleum Bijan Zangeneh oversaw the signing between two subsidiaries of the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) and seven domestic contractors to raise recovery at the fields by 90,000 barrels a day, media reports said Wednesday.

The fields – seven located in Khuzestan province and two in Bushehr and Fars provinces – are all onshore. They are among 33 oilfields selected for revival by Iranian companies at a total cost of $6 billion over three years after which they will add 300,000 barrels a day to Iran’s production capacity.

Jan 25 12:29

Iran backs Venezuela’s President Maduro and rejects US interference

A spokesman for the Iranian Foreign Ministry announced on Thursday that the Islamic Republic backs Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro after the United States announced its support for Juan Guaido, the leader of the country’s opposition-held National Assembly, as the country’s interim president.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran,” explained Bahram Qasimi to local media, “supports the government and people of Venezuela against any sort of foreign intervention and any illegitimate and illegal action such as attempts to foster a coup d’etat.”

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has called on Maduro to hand over to Guaido, who is also supported by the European Union, Canada, Mexico, Colombia, Peru, Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Panama and Paraguay. Maduro has the backing of Russia, Iran, Turkey, Uruguay, Cuba, Syria and Palestine.

Jan 24 11:45

MAINSTREAM MEDIA IS LITERALLY MAKING PEOPLE SICK

I do not for one second doubt that Americans are feeling more stressed and suffering more health-degrading symptoms as a result than they were prior to Trump’s election. But Pacific Standard and its “growing body of research” ignore the most obvious and significant culprit behind this phenomenon which is tearing people’s health to shreds: the mass media which has been deliberately fanning the flames of Trump panic.

The always excellent Moon of Alabama blog has just published a sarcasm-laden piece documenting the many, many aggressive maneuvers that this administration has made against the interests of Russia, from pushing for more NATO funding to undermining Russia’s natural gas interests to bombing Syria to sanctioning Russian oligarchs to dangerous military posturing.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

What is infinitely more grating, from where I sit, is not the "Trump Panic Syndrome", but the "Trump Reality Syndrome", which includes things he had promised on the campaign trail which he has not done... and things President Trump has done, in these first two years of his Presidency.

1. The massive disparity between the monied and the desperate keeps growing exponentially. There are little victories, of smaller companies moving back to the US (probably with some rich state/town perks and benefits for having done so.) But the consistent off-shoring, out-sourcing of American jobs continues apace. There is an epidemic of homelessness in this country which is unprecedented.

Remember the stunning scenario which inspired Victor Hugo to create his "Les Miserables"?!? In 1845, on the streets of Paris, he observed the same incident that triggers the novel's action. On a sunny but cold day, he saw an impoverished man being arrested for stealing a loaf of bread. As the man stood on the street, an ornate carriage pulled up beside him. Inside there was a dazzlingly beautiful woman dressed in velvet, playing with a child hidden under ribbons, embroidery and furs. The impoverished man stared at the woman in the carriage, but she was totally unaware of him. Hugo wrote that he saw this man as, "The spectre of misery, the ghostly forewarning in full light of day, in the sunshine, of the revolution still plunged in the shadows of darkness, but emerging from them. The moment he became aware of her existence, while she remained unaware of his, a catastrophe was inevitable."

Folks, we're there, right now; history may not necessarily repeat, but occasionally it rhymes. And let me say, for the record; as a Christian pacifist activist, I abhor violence,and would never advocate its use.

And those great pronouncements about the employment in this country, are running so low; this is a marvelous subterfuge, and a neat "hat trick", courtesy of the Department of Labor Statistics.

You see, people who are unemployed for more than 4 weeks, are deliberately purged from the figures as not interested in working, almost as though they had never existed at all.

If the US unemployment rate included everyone who says they want a job, it would be nearly double

2. President Trump withdrew the US from the P5+1 deal, even though the IAEA continues to state that the Iranians are currently keeping their end of the deal. I cannot begin to articulate just how completely insane, and counter productive this was. There are many things about which I rightly criticized the Obama Administration, but this was not of them. And the consequences?!?

Remember: demonization, plus Sanctions, create the American Preludes to War.

We are on the doorstep of such a war against Iran, because Israel's Prime Minister Netanyahu, keeps advocating it, calling Iran "the existential enemy" of Israel. We are plunged into our "2 minutes of hate against Iran", ad nauseum, by the corporate presstitutes. So, let's see, what could possibly go wrong here?!?

Emboldened by one of his BFFs in the Middle East, President Trump, Israel has been making bombing runs into Syria to destroy alleged Iranian placements of personnel, and equipment in that country. Netanyahu: we will not stop fighting Iran as long as I lead Needless to say, Iran is not amused with these actions, and Russia, who has been assisting the Syrian government in getting rid of US backed, equipped, and funded jihadis in Syria, has told Israel in no uncertain terms, to back off. As of yesterday, Russia blasted Netanyahu with the following demand: Israel's airstrikes against Syria must stop. We also see the following headline: World War III: Iran, Syria, Russia and Israel

I do hope our President understands the following: Tel Aviv thoroughly expects the costs of such a war to be borne in American blood and money; not Israeli. Should such a war begin, expect Russia (and perhaps China) to come into the fray on Iran's side.

3. And speaking of war, let's remember the Saudi war against Yemen, where the American government and military are complicit in Saudi war crimes. Why Are U.S. Bombs Killing Civilians in Yemen?

The reason is simple: The Saudis love to buy American bombs to continue to create a genocide in Yemen.Saudi Arabia is the top buyer of US weapons" President Trump has, by default, and his sign-off on all these deals, has given him yet another title: The American Merchant of Death in Chief.

Please think about that for a minute. Did you ever think, when you were a kid, about how you would feel, understanding you would be a citizen of a US government which would be complicit in war crimes?!?

3. The illegal immigration solutions President Trump promised the American people, have gone down in flames.

4. Us sanctions around the globe in places like Russia, China, and Venezuela, are pushing other countries further away from the US, both in relationships, and finding creative ways to ditch the dollar, and come to other understandings about how finance can be conducted.

5. I notice the corporate presstitutes are continually spewing out their vile codswallop against countries which have done nothing to the US, to further the governments'agendas which, at this time, seem to be all-out war-centric. The two countries which come to mind, are Iran, and Russia.

The US government accuses Russia of having "annexed Crimea", which never, in reality, did happen; After the 2014 Putsch in Ukraine, Crimea did two things; in a fair and peaceful referendum, the Crimean government asked the people of Crimea, if they wanted to stay in Ukraine, or petition the Russian Federation for membership. The Crimean people voted overwhelmingly to petition the Russian Federation for a membership, and the Russian Federation accepted this. And please remember: in an interview with CNN, President Obama confessed to have brokered a deal for "regime change" in Ukraine. In a CNN interview, President Obama Confesses that the US brokered a deal for" Regime change" in Ukraine, January, 2015

6. The US has left a ton of military footprints around the world. the list is breathlessly long, and may contain country names you haven't thought about since High School Geography, or may have been recently created

These are the true issues of "The Trump Reality Syndrome".

Please understand that I am just as angry about these issues as many of you are, but realize that I need to channel my anger into logic, research, and coming up with alternate ways in which this country could get what it wants, geopolitically, without resorting to war.

Because right now, war - and the monied who become enriched through war and military conflicts around the world - are winning, and I am singularly depressed about this.

Jan 24 10:24

US Releases American Journalist After 10 Days Detention Without Charges

Ten days ago, US citizen Marzieh Hashemi was arrested at the St. Louis Lambert Airport, and transferred into FBI custody. On Wednesday, she was finally released, having never been charged with a crime.

Hashemi is a journalist and an anchor for Iran’s PressTV, and her arrest was the subject of mounting international scrutiny, though the US government had refused virtually all comment. Officially she was kept in prison as a “material witness.”

Hashemi and her family issued a statement following her release, saying she retains “serious grievances” about her treatment in the US prison system, during which her hijab was forcibly removed, and she was denied food in keeping with her religious requirements. She has promised to continue protests to prevent the US from imprisoning people without charges like this ever again.

Jan 24 10:19

Iran, Turkey, Russia warn US against meddling in domestic affairs of Venezuela

Iran, Turkey and Russia throw their weight behind the Venezuelan government against a bizarre move by the US-backed opposition leader to proclaim himself “president,” warning Washington against interfering in domestic affairs of the South American state.

On Thursday, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qassemi said the Islamic Republic “backs Venezuela’s nation and legitimate government in the face of any foreign meddling in the country’s domestic affairs or any illegitimate and illegal measure such as attempts for a coup or moves against the people.”

“We hope that any disagreement and political problem in Venezuela will be resolved by the country’s own people and government as soon as possible via legal and peaceful solutions,” he added.

Jan 23 14:07

Syria Ceasefire On Brink Of Collapse As Russia Blames Turkey For Terrorist Growth

The collapse of the prior 'deescalation' agreement comes at a time when the White House has vowed to stick to the planned US pullout, however, this could be yet a another major development to complicate or delay any possible withdrawal timeline. FT described current Turkish-Russian talks in Moscow as follows:

Russia has accused Turkey of failing to live up to a promise to clear Syria’s Idlib of extremist militant groups and admitted that a landmark ceasefire agreement made last September had failed. Ahead of crunch talks between the leaders of the two countries in Moscow on Wednesday, Russia’s foreign ministry said the Islamist extremist group Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) had “full control” of Syria’s last remaining major opposition stronghold. The damning assessment came four months after Moscow agreed to postpone a planned military assault on the city in exchange for a promise from Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan to clear it of militants.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The people of Syria have suffered extensively, during this Western-lead funding, and training, and arming their their adversaries.

They want their country - and their cities - back.

Jan 23 11:10

It’s time to join together to protect essential rights

The federal government has forcibly seized, shackled, and kept imprisoned an American citizen who has not even been charged with a crime. They have incarcerated the 59-year-old grandmother for over a week and say they will continue to do so for an unquantified period of time into the future.

For several days the government refused to admit it had taken the woman from the St. Louis airport as she was on her way to visit a sick brother.

For 48 hours, authorities refused to allow her to contact her family, and refused to tell anyone, including mainstream news media like the Associated Press, CNN, and Fox News where they were holding her.

Finally, a judge, who perhaps remembered what the United States Constitution requires, partially unsealed the court records, and the government’s official rationale became public: she had been forcibly taken away, shackled, and imprisoned because she was, they said, a “witness.” To a still-unspecified crime.

Jan 23 10:44

Is Bolton at the Steering Wheel, Headed Straight for Iran?

“Stop the ENDLESS WARS!” implored President Donald Trump in a Sunday night tweet.

Well, if he is serious, Trump had best keep an eye on his national security adviser, for a U.S. war on Iran would be a dream come true for John Bolton.

Last September, when Shiite militants launched three mortar shells into the Green Zone in Baghdad, which exploded harmlessly in a vacant lot, Bolton called a series of emergency meetings and directed the Pentagon to prepare a menu of targets, inside Iran, for U.S. air and missile strikes in retaliation.

The Wall Street Journal quoted one U.S. official as saying Bolton’s behavior “rattled people. … People were shocked. It was mind-boggling how cavalier they were about hitting Iran.”

Bolton’s former deputy, Mira Ricardel, reportedly told a gathering the shelling into the Green Zone was “an act of war” to which the U.S. must respond decisively.

Jan 23 10:28

Israel must stop 'spontaneous' Syria strikes: Russia

Russia has urged Israel to stop its "spontaneous" airstrikes on Syria, days after the Israeli military carried out fresh strikes against targets near the Syrian capital, Damascus.

Israel has repeatedly attacked Syrian government positions under the pretext that its attacking Iranian military advisers, who are in the country on a request from President Bashar al-Assad to assist the Syrian Army in their fight against foreign-backed terrorists.

"The practice of spontaneous strikes on the territory of a sovereign state, in this case Syria, must end," Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said Wednesday, according to Russia's TASS state news agency.

Zakharova (pictured below) said such moves by Tel Aviv only fueled tensions in the region and harmed the long-term interests of all regional players, including Israel itself.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Zakharova can repeat that request ad infinitum, but it not going to make any change in Netanyahu's behaviour, and it appears that anything President Trump says, regarding creating a wider war in the region, is going in one ear, and out the other. Hubristic, imperious leaders cannot learn from their mistakes, so keep on making them ... until they are stopped.

History will not judge Netanyahu kindly, for all the foul-ups, bleeps, and blunders he has created for the Israeli people, and the future may not be kind in its recollection of him, or his tenure as Prime Minister.

Jan 23 09:38

World War 3: 'Rapid military escalation' occurring between Iran and Israel

TENSIONS between Iran and Israel are "escalating and intensifying" after Israel struck Iranian targets this week, a former Pentagon official has warned.

World War 3: 'Rapid military escalation' occurring between Iran and Israel
TENSIONS between Iran and Israel are "escalating and intensifying" after Israel struck Iranian targets this week, a former Pentagon official has warned.

World War 3 fears were sparked this week after Israel hit the Syrian capital of Damascus early on Monday as part of its increasingly open assault on Iran's presence there. In response, Iran issued a chilling message to arch-enemy Israel – warning it is “impatient” and ready to confront and destroy the nation in a statement issued just hours after Israel launched the air raids in Syria.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Such a war would be horrific and costly for all concerned; I hope that the leaders of all these countries can find a way for it not to happen; unfortunately, too many of the actors in this environment have much to gain; the weapons manufacturers will profit; possibly the US will go back to the draft; and martial law will most probably be imposed here in the US.

I frequently talk about the possibility of a Department of Peace, tasked with achieving those geopolitical goals the US government wants to achieve, but without firing a single shot; unfortunately, however, I have seen this coming conflagration for far too long, to believe that the US government is going to give up on the complete occupation of Iran; Syria; Libya, Lebanon, Afghanistan; or Yemen.

Jan 23 09:08

Damascus Threatens to Respond to Israeli Attack With Strike on Tel Aviv Airport

Permanent Representative of the Syrian Arab Republic to the United Nations Bashar Jaafari said that it was time that the United Nations Security Council took action to stop constant Israeli attacks on Syrian territory, adding that Damascus might exercise its right to self-defence and respond to the Israeli attack on Damascus Airport with a symmetric strike on Tel Aviv Airport.

"Isn't it is the right time for this council to take the necessary measures to stop the repeated Israeli aggression against the territories of my country or should we attract the attention of the war makers in this council be exercising our legitimate right for self-defence and respond to the Israeli aggression against the Damascus International Airport by launching an aggression against Tel Aviv Airport?" Jaafari said speaking at a UN Security Council meeting on the situation in the Middle East.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is all for show; Jaafari knows that the UN is impotent against Israel; one world leader, however, who is capable of bloodying Israel's nose militarily, is President Putin of Russia.

There have been reports of conversations between Putin and Netanyahu; I have to wonder how true they are, because it doesn't look as though Putin has been able to neutralize Netanyahu's behaviour.

Time will sort that mystery, however.

Jan 23 08:24

Switzerland & Iran developing payment channel to bypass US sanctions

A special financial mechanism aimed at maintaining trade ties between Switzerland and Iran is ready for implementation, according to Sharif Nezam-Mafi, the head of the countries’ joint chamber of commerce.

Jan 23 01:52

ISRAEL DESTROYED EIGHT SYRIAN MILITARY TARGETS, KILLED AT LEAST 11 TROOPS

Despite claiming that their Sunday night airstrikes against Syria were exclusively targeting Iran’s Quds Force, Israeli airstrikes against Syria appear to have almost exclusively hit Syrian military targets, particularly the nation’s air defenses around Damascus airport.

Israeli strikes destroyed eight Syrian air defense batteries, and killed at least 11 troops in the strikes. The batteries were mostly aging Soviet designs, the sort Syria has traditionally favored for targeting incoming Israeli missiles.

The Syrian systems had some success, too, with Russia reporting that the Syrians had successfully intercepted more than 30 Israeli missiles during the attack. Conspicuously absent from the engagement, however, were the Russian S-300 systems recently provided to Syria.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I am holding my breath, waiting to see how Russia's President Putin, ultimate responds to this.

Jan 22 11:37

Let the Holy Meme War Begin! IDF Mocks Iran on Twitter

The sarcastic tweet continues the Israeli rhetoric towards Iran, which was recently reiterated by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who claimed that Israel had targeted Iranian forces in Syria in its recent airstrikes. Tehran has repeatedly denied Tel Aviv's accusations, stating that it has only sent military advisers to the Arab Republic.

The official Twitter account of the Israel Defence Forces has posted a mocking picture featuring a map of the Middle East with an arrow drawn pointing at Syria and captioned "where Iran is" and several arrows pointing to Iran on the map with the caption "where Iran belongs" in an apparent reference to Israeli claims that Tehran has sent units from its Quds Force to the Arab Republic.

Jan 22 11:26

Iran is ready to take risks in its struggle with Israel

In response to Israel’s attack Sunday on Iranian targets in the Damascus region, the Quds Force of the Revolutionary Guard fired a medium-range surface-to-surface missile at the Hermon Mountain vicinity. Apparently, the attack had been planned for a long time and approved by the Iranian regime in Tehran. The missile was intercepted by Israel’s Iron Dome system.

Jan 22 11:08

CBI Governor: Japan Restarts Oil Imports from Iran

Governor of the Central Bank of Iran (CBI) Abdolnasser Hemmati announced on Monday that Japan has resumed supply of crude from Iran.
"Japan started operations to import oil from Iran today after China, South Korea, India and Turkey," Hemmati wrote on his Instagram page on Monday.

He added that the revenues collected from the new oil deals along with tens of billions of dollars seen as active CBI resources in foreign banks are a strong and safe backup for Iran's economy and will be used for the country's trade.

After suspending all shipments of Iranian crude to Japanese refineries ahead of the November 5 launch of US sanctions against Tehran, Japanese refiners resumed Iranian oil imports.

Japan is one of Iran’s largest oil importers, but it is also the United States’ staunchest ally in Asia—and the combination of the two has not worked to Tokyo’s advantage.

Jan 22 11:07

Report: China Seeking $3bln Oil Deal with Iran Despite US Sanctions

China's state-run energy giant Sinopec offered a three-billion-dollar deal to further develop an Iranian oilfield the two countries are already working on, media reports said.

The offer made by the China Petroleum & Chemical Corp (Sinopec) is part of an existing contract to operate the Yadavaran oilfield in Southwest Iran on the Iraqi border, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Jan 22 09:49

VIDEO - World War 3 Alert! Iranian Forces Fire Missile To Israel, IDF Responds With Waves Of Guided Missiles

Israel and Iran are edging dangerously close to a state of all-out war.

Jan 22 09:08

Iran not invited, Russia snubs intl conference on Middle East – Warsaw

Polish Foreign Minister Jacek Czaputowicz says that Iran has not been invited to an international conference on the Middle East in Warsaw next month. Czaputowicz said in remarks published on Monday that Iran’s presence would have hampered talks because the language that Tehran uses is “hard to accept.” Iran has protested over the February 13-14 conference, calling it a hostile move. Poland and the US are co-hosting the event, which has also been met with a lukewarm reaction from the European Union, whose foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini will not be attending. Czaputowicz also said Russia has advised that it will not participate either, AP reports.

Jan 22 08:21

INTELLIGENCE MINISTER: ISRAEL IS IN OPEN CONFRONTATION WITH IRAN IN SYRIA

Israeli policy for attacking targets in Syria has changed and is intensifying, Intelligence Minister Israel Katz said Monday morning in an interview with Army Radio.

In response to a missile launch by Iranian forces from Syria into Israeli territory which intended to hit the northern Golan Heights, IDF fighter planes attacked Syrian military targets and Syrian air defense batteries overnight on Sunday and early Monday morning.

Jan 22 08:19

INSS: Israel could face three-front war in 2019

Institute for National Security Studies says the volatile situation along the northern border as well as in the Gaza Strip could lead Israel to war against Iran, Hezbollah and the Palestinians at the same time.

Jan 22 08:08

Why are so many Iranian minors seeking asylum in Europe?

The reports on the dramatic rise in the number of Iranians seeking asylum in Europe, especially unaccompanied children, are profoundly unsettling.

Prominent human rights lawyer Shadi Sadr recently drew attention to this phenomenon through a Twitter thread in which she highlighted the rise in the number of Iranian asylum seekers between 2013 and 2018.

"Interestingly, last year," she tweeted, "the number of unaccompanied Iranian children seeking asylum was higher than the number of unaccompanied minors from Afghanistan, Ethiopia and Syria - three countries that are involved in armed conflict."

Jan 22 01:58

Israel admits to hitting Iranian military sites in Syria

The Israeli military announced its jets struck Iranian targets in Syria, leading Tehran officials saying the want to 'eliminate' Israel.

Israeli jets struck a series of Iranian military targets in Syria early on Monday, the military said, leading Iranian officials announce they want to "eliminate it (Israel) from the Earth".

The Israeli military said the targets included munition storage facilities, an intelligence site, and a military training camp.

The strikes were in response to a surface-to-surface rocket that Iranian forces fired toward Israel on Sunday that was intercepted by Israel's Iron Dome missile defence system over a ski resort in the Golan Heights, following an Israeli daylight air raid near the Damascus International Airport.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

There are a number of very dramatic ways in which the Israeli/Western-backed media are playing this.

WW3: Iran is prepared to eliminate Israel from the Earth

Syria has written a letter of complaint to the UN as Israel Strikes alleged "terrorists"( read: Iranian military)

World War3: Iran vs/ Israel in Syrian bombing raids

This article goes on to state: "Speaking today, the head of Iran's air force said on Monday the country was impatient to fight Israel and destroy it, a state-linked news website said. Brigadier General Aziz Nasirzadeh was quoted as saying by the Young Journalist Club, a website supervised by state television: ”The young people in the air force are fully ready and impatient to confront the Zionist regime and eliminate it from the Earth."

But if the Iranian military and civilian leadership are going to aggressively strike Israel, why would they tip their hand, by making such a public threat?!?

The short answer is, they wouldn't, particularly if they have already complained to the UN to get the Israeli bombings to stop, which they have done.

You have to remember that Israel's Netanyahu is in a very difficult spot right now. It appears, and has been leaked on a couple of Israeli blogs, that the Attorney General of Israel is preparing to indict him on a corruption charge, and that will happen in, most probably, just a couple of weeks. So now he is like a geopolitically wounded animal right now; All wounded animals, particularly politicians, are very dangerous.

My guess, at this point in time, that the Israeli military have been tasked to make it look as though an Iranian military unit did horrific damage to a large American base in Syria; he has got to do this both before the indictment, and way before the election in April.

Whether he will have the courtesy to alert President Trump or not to such an action, I am not sure; my gut is telling me that he will only let him know who actually "did the deed" far after getting the US to declare war against Iran, and we are off and running.

We've only got a little time left before that indictment pops, so looking at how far we are toward the end of the month, if he wants this to happen, it has to happen very quickly; there are only 9 more days left in January.

And the big question then becomes, what is Russia willing - and capable -of doing to prevent this madness before it starts in earnest?!?

I do consider Lavrov and Putin to be "the adults in the room" on the issue of Syria, and hopefully they will have enough "pull" with Netanyahu to prevent this from happening.

Unfortunately for them, Netanyahu's manic, hubristic, clinging to power, by any means necessary, even starting a war, just might look to him to be the right thing to do right now.

Jan 21 13:31

'Iran allows no coalition against its interests'

(*"Iran, stiving for this level of high vigilance is something they can thank The U.S. for .
Don't mention it !"
whitehorse souce )

Jan 21 12:17

Israel says its jets struck Iranian military sites in Syria

The Israeli military said its jets struck Iranian military targets in Syria early Monday, an announcement that marked a rare departure from Israel's yearslong policy of ambiguity regarding activities in neighboring Syria.

The military said the targets included munition storage facilities, an intelligence site and a military training camp.

The strikes were in response to a surface-to-surface rocket that Iranian forces fired toward Israel on Sunday that was intercepted by Israel's Iron Dome missile defense system over a ski resort in the Golan Heights. That launch followed a rare Israeli daylight air raid near the Damascus International Airport.

Jan 21 12:15

Israel Announces Sustained Strikes On Damascus; Syria Fires Back In Major Escalation

It's the first time that Israel has ever announced strikes against Iran inside Syria and in real time. Moments after a massive wave of rockets were fired on Damascus, activating Syrian anti-air defenses Sunday night, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) announced: "We have started striking Iranian Quds targets in Syrian territory. We warn the Syrian Armed Forces against attempting to harm Israeli forces or territory."

This is unprecedented given that in every other among the dozens of prior recent Israeli attacks on Syria, the IDF has never acknowledged responsibility so quickly and certainly not while they are ongoing, usually declining to confirm or deny after the event.

Jan 21 12:04

Distinguished Iranian/American Journalist Marzieh Hashemi arrested by FBI

Distinguished Press TV journalist/anchor’s unlawful arrest, detention and mistreatment by the FBI, on the pretext of being a material witness regarding a case her family knows nothing about, gave the US another international black eye.

What happened captured world headlines, hopefully enough to help hasten Marzieh’s release. Press TV, the Tehran Times, and other Iranian media continue giving the case extensive coverage.

International print and electronic media have had feature stories on what happened – including RT, Sputnik News, the NYT, Washington Post, AP News, Reuters, CBS, NBC, and ABC News, CNN, Fox News, Al Jazeera, the BBC, London Guardian, Haaretz, and numerous other outlets.

They’ve elevated Marzieh’s status as a distinguished international journalist to an even higher level than before what happened – by highlighting her unacceptable arrest, detention, and mistreatment uncharged.

Jan 21 09:52

Press groups concerned about US jailing of Iranian news anchor; court appearances shrouded in mystery

Committee to Protect Journalists and PEN call for Justice Department to state why it has jailed US citizen Marzieh Hashemi, a prominent journalist with Iran’s Press TV. FBI & Justice Dept refuse to comment… possible court appearances not listed in dockets…

Jan 21 09:52

Rolling Coverage: Press TV’s detained anchor has appeared in court twice for testimonyUnlisted

Jan 21 09:21

Silence of the Lambs: The Case of Marzieh Hashemi

In the wake of the outcry after the abduction and murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi – in a foreign country and under the directive of a rogue Crown Prince – one would think the threshold to condemn the detention of an American journalist in the United States without charge or trial would be quite low. Unfortunately, it has proven to be nearly insurmountable.

It has now been one week since Marzieh Hashemi, a US citizen and anchorwoman of Iran’s English-language news station, PressTV, has been held under these circumstances shortly after her arrival to St. Louis Lambert International Airport Jan. 12 to work on a documentary on the Black Lives Matter movement. Hashemi is purportedly an alleged material witness in an as-yet unspecified investigation. She was reportedly forced to remove her headscarf and offered pork to eat, both against the tenets of her religion, before being transferred to Washington, D.C. to an unknown location.

Jan 19 10:01

Press TV’s Hashemi unlikely to be released immediately: Son

A court in the United States has confirmed the arrest of US-born Iranian Press TV news presenter Marzieh Hashemi as a material witness in an unspecified investigation.

Ms. Hashemi, 59, was arrested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) on unspecified charges upon arrival at St. Louis Lambert International Airport in St. Louis, Missouri, on Sunday, her family and friends said.

At the request of the US Justice Department, Judge Beryl Alaine Howell, the chief district judge for the District of Columbia, issued a federal court order, approving the partial unsealing of the Press TV journalist’s case, Reuters reported.

According to the document, since her arrest, the journalist has appeared twice before a US district judge in Washington and has been appointed a lawyer.

Jan 19 10:00

US seeks to pressure Iran through Press TV anchor’s arrest: Analyst

The United States is seeking to put pressure on Iran through the arrest and imprisonment of Marzieh Hashemi, a journalist and anchor working for Iran’s English-language Press TV television news network, says an academic.

“I think they have motives, obviously we can only kind of guess at those, but clearly what is certainly happening is that this is an escalation, an escalation of harassment, an escalation in terms of trying to put pressure on Iran through Ms. Hashemi, through her treatment. They have purposely chosen this situation and escalated it so that it becomes the issue that it has become,” Kenneth Fero, lecturer at Coventry University, told Press TV in an interview on Friday.

“They have opened a new theater really and they are having their players running around and controlling everything. Later on today if it does goes to court we’ll be able to know whether she is being held as a material witness or whether she is actually going to be charged with anything,” he added.

Jan 19 09:19

Will nothing sate John Bolton’s lust for war?

Will the Trump administration embrace the Bolton doctrine? John Bolton, whom Donald Trump appointed in April to replace the stolid H.R. McMaster, has been trying to tailor administration foreign policy to match his hawkish views. Among his initiatives, the Wall Street Journal reported, is to make a move to do what he has long wanted done, which is to wage war against the mullahs in Tehran. The result is a schism in the administration.

Jan 19 09:11

American Anchor for Iran’s PressTV Still Jailed Without Charge

It took a solid week after her detention in St. Louis, but Marzieh Hashemi, an anchor for Iran’s PressTV and an American citizen, has finally gotten into a courtroom, and learned that she is neither being accused of any crimes nor is she facing any charges. That said, they’re not expecting to let her go any time soon.

Hashemi is being held as a witness for a grand jury. Federal law technically allows such detention if a judge is convinced the person might not testify willingly, though legal experts have noted this is a tactic that has faced little legal challenge in the past, and might not stand up to a serious case. Hashemi does not finally have an attorney.

The law that allows for these detentions is meant to be very limited in use, and very temporary, with the detainee supposed to be released immediately after they are deposed. It is unclear, however, when they actually intend to depose Ms. Hashemi, and the early impression is that the detention may take some time.

Jan 19 08:46

EU countries could snub US-Poland summit over Iran concerns

European Union countries could snub an international conference on the Middle East scheduled to take place in Poland next month over concerns it is part of a US drive to ramp up pressure on Iran.

EU diplomats raised questions about the real agenda of the February 13-14 conference on Friday, saying it was organised at very short notice and noting that Iran did not appear to be invited.

An EU official said the bloc's foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, had other commitments and would not attend.

Jan 18 11:21

FBI REFUSES TO DISCUSS DETENTION OF AMERICAN IRANIAN TV ANCHOR MARZIEH HASHEMI

The U.S. Justice Department and FBI continue to refuse to comment on the jailing of Marzieh Hashemi, a documentarian and news anchor on Iran’s English language station, Press TV.

The 59-year-old Hashemi, born Melanie Franklin in New Orleans, is an American citizen. She was in the U.S. filming a documentary on Black Lives Matter and visiting family when the FBI suddenly arrested her.

Hashemi is being held in Washington DC’s Correctional Treatment Facility. According to a Department of Corrections worker, she is in court now, but phone calls to DC district courts failed to find her.

Hashemi was held 48 hours before being allowed to contact her family. She has complained of ill-treatment. Authorities forcibly removed her headscarf and took her away in handcuffs.

Her son says he was told that she is being held as a “material witness.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

One has to wonder to what end the FBI is holding this woman, and what kind of "confession" she is supposed to give, to enable Americans to do their "2 minutes of hate" appropriately, against her adopted country.

And she is allegedly a "material witness"; to WHAT, please, that she has been treated with all the execrable brutality the American Police State can offer?!?

This reeks of set up.

Jan 17 13:58

Iran vows to will keep military forces in Syria despite Israeli threats

Iran will keep military forces in Syria, the head of the elite Revolutionary Guards said on Wednesday, defying Israeli threats that they might be targeted if they do not leave the country.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Tuesday that Israeli forces would continue to attack Iranians in Syria and warned them “to get out of there fast, because we will continue with our resolute policy”.

Rebuffing the threats, Major General Mohammad Ali Jafari, the Revolutionary Guards top commander, was quoted as saying by the semi-official ISNA news agency that “the Islamic Republic of Iran will keep all its military and revolutionary advisers and its weapons in Syria.”

Jan 17 11:46

CASE STUDY: REUTERS AND US MEDIA URGE OFFENSIVE AGAINST IRAN

A 2013 news investigation of Iranian corruption by Reuters news service has been cited by at least four books published one after another, the most recently in 2018.

It has also been cited by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in 2018 speech. Given the article’s ongoing influence, this article will scrutinize flaws in the reporting techniques and raise reasonable questions about several of its findings. The article will also mention, a piece of important historical context, that was long assumed, but made official in 2013 – the same year the story was published – when the US government released classified documents about its involvement in the overthrow of Iran’s democratically elected leader in 1953 and the establishment of the Shah. The purpose of this article is not to stain the reputation of an entire news agency – but to simply lay out an alternative context for interpreting a single, influential story.

Jan 17 04:57

Iran Ready to Sign "Zero Tariffs" Deal with Iraq

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif announced the country's willingness to ink a deal with Iraq to drop customs tariffs between the two countries.

"The Islamic Republic of Iran is prepared to zero tariff rates between the two countries," Zarif said, addressing an economic forum in Iraq's Southern city of Karbala on Wednesday.

He added that despite the US sanctions, Iran is exporting $2bln worth of gas and electricity to Iraq annually, stressing that the two countries' cooperation in the energy sector can grow if Tehran and Baghdad decide not to allow Washington to impose restrictions and limitations on their trade.

Zarif said 80 Iranian technical and engineering companies are active in Iraq with contracts worth 8bln, and stated, "The Islamic Republic of Iran enjoys very high capacities to reconstruct the post-ISIL Iraq."

>>>

Jan 16 12:46

Pentagon Officials Fear Bolton’s Actions Could Provoke War With Iran

Having spent decades advocating a US attack on Iran, John Bolton’s position as National Security Adviser is allowing him to push the idea hard with President Trump. For those less enamored of that war, including Pentagon leadership, there is mounting concern that Bolton might provoke such a war.

So when Bolton came to the Pentagon asking them for military options for attacking Iran, nominally in retaliation for a Shi’ite Iraqi militia firing mortar shells in Baghdad, they were reticent.

The options they delivered were reportedly very limited. They involved little more than a show of force with limited airstrikes against some random Iranian military site. This was far short of what Bolton wanted, but former Defense Secretary James Mattis argued that even this was a bad idea, and no attack has happened yet.

Jan 16 11:39

Iran, India Ditch Dollar In Oil Trading To Counter 'Bullying' US Sanctions

In an effort to circumvent US-imposed sanctions, India and Iran have reportedly ditched the US dollar and are trading oil in rupees. The reason becomes clear after considering the dynamics at play in the region.

In mid-February last year, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani visited India, and the two countries signed nine agreements signalling a strengthening of ties. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi appeared to celebrate the growing relationship, stating that it was “a matter of great pleasure” for India that an Iranian president came to India “after a gap of 10 years.”

Fast-forward a few months later, and then-UN ambassador Nikki Haley was bluntly telling India that they should rethink their relationship with Tehran.

Jan 16 11:34

BEX ALERT - Iran's Missiles Used in Satellite Launches Threaten Europe, Middle East - Pompeo

Earlier in January, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo warned that if Tehran went ahead with plans to carry out space launches in the coming months, Iran would face more economic and diplomatic pressure.

Iran's failed attempt to launch a satellite into orbit with a three stage rocket demonstrates the Islamic Republic’s intent to develop missiles able to reach as far as Europe, Mike Pompeo said in a statement on Tuesday.

Jan 16 11:26

Press TV anchor Marzieh Hashemi jailed in US on unspecified charges

Marzieh Hashemi, a journalist and anchor working for Iran’s English-language Press TV television news network, has been detained and imprisoned in the United States for unspecified reasons.

American-born Hashemi, most famous for anchoring news programs and presenting shows for Press TV, was detained upon arrival at St. Louis Lambert International Airport in St. Louis, Missouri, on Sunday, her family and friends said.

Press TV has learned that she was transferred by the FBI to a detention facility in Washington, DC. The US officials have so far refused to provide any reasons for her apprehension either to her or her family.

The Associated Press (AP) said a call to the FBI rang unanswered early on Wednesday morning. The bureau did not immediately respond to a written request for comment, it added.

Jan 16 10:59

Is Bolton Steering Trump into War with Iran?

“Stop the ENDLESS WARS!” implored President Donald Trump in a Sunday night tweet.

Well, if he is serious, Trump had best keep an eye on his national security adviser, for a U.S. war on Iran would be a dream come true for John Bolton.

Last September, when Shiite militants launched three mortar shells into the Green Zone in Baghdad, which exploded harmlessly in a vacant lot, Bolton called a series of emergency meetings and directed the Pentagon to prepare a menu of targets, inside Iran, for U.S. air and missile strikes in retaliation.

The Wall Street Journal quoted one U.S. official as saying Bolton’s behavior “rattled people. … People were shocked. It was mind-boggling how cavalier they were about hitting Iran.”
Bolton’s former deputy, Mira Ricardel, reportedly told a gathering the shelling into the Green Zone was “an act of war” to which the U.S. must respond decisively.

Jan 16 10:18

Iranian PressTV journalist held by FBI, denied halal food, hijab removed against her will – network

A PressTV journalist has been mysteriously detained for over 48 hours by the FBI after she was apprehended at St. Louis Lambert International Airport while traveling to visit family, the network has learned.

The state-run, English-language Iranian network says its journalist and anchor Marzieh Hashemi was detained at St. Louis Lambert International Airport, Missouri and sent to Washington DC, where she is currently being held in an FBI detention facility. No charges have been filed against her, and no reason was given for her detention, according to a network spokesman who spoke to RT.

Jan 16 10:08

Bolton’s Radical Reshaping Plan for Mideast Included “Mind Boggling” Strikes on Iran, Syria, and Iraq

In 2017, less than a year before he became national security advisor, John Bolton promised a gathering of the Mujahedeen Khalq (MEK) that:

The declared policy of the United States should be the overthrow of the mullahs’ regime in Tehran. … The behavior and the objectives of the regime are not going to change and, therefore, the only solution is to change the regime itself. … And that’s why, before 2019, we here will celebrate in Tehran!”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Here's your rifle...

Jan 16 10:07

Israel inflating Iran’s presence in Syria to cover its own failures, Tehran says

Israel has falsely inflated Iran’s presence in Syria to cover for its own failures in the region, a spokesman for the Iranian foreign ministry said on Monday.

Spokesman Bahram Qasemi said Iran did not have any military bases or military presence in Syria, and was only in the country “at the request of the Syrian government for advisory mission and fighting the terrorists,” according to a report by Iran’s official news agency, IRNA.

Jan 16 04:35

Syrians, Iraqis defeated Daesh

Syrians, Iraqis defeated Daesh, not Americans: Iran’s Zarif

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif says the victory over the Daesh terrorist group in Iraq and Syria was the result of endeavors by the two nations themselves and that the United States played no role in defeating the outfit.

Foreign Minister Zarif made the remarks on Wednesday in a meeting with Iranian and Iraqi businesspeople as well as local officials in the Iraqi city of Karbala.

Zarif pointed to the fact that America has not succeed in combating terrorism in other parts of the world and said success in Iraq and Syria came about because the people of the two countries stood up, fought, and sacrificed lives. “That is why this victory has nothing to do with America...">>>

Jan 16 04:17

US arrests journalist working for Iran's state Press TV

Iranian broadcaster says Marzieh Hashemi was arrested after landing at St Louis international airport

An American journalist working for Iran's English-language Press TV has been arrested by US authorities on unspecified charges, the state-run broadcaster said on Wednesday.

Marzieh Hashemi, 59, was arrested upon arrival at St Louis Lambert International Airport on Sunday and transferred by the FBI to a detention facility in Washington, DC, Press TV said.

"Her relatives were unable to contact her, and she was allowed to contact her daughter only two days after her arrest," the Iranian broadcaster reported.
***
Hashemi's reported arrest comes amid heightened tensions between Iran and the US.

During his recent trip through the Middle East, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the US is "redoubling" its efforts to put pressure on Iran, accusing it of destabilising the region.

Pompeo vowed to "expel every last Iranian boot" from Syria>>>

(*RELATED: from PRESS TV !

(*FARSNEWS UPDATE: FBI Jails, Tortures Muslim News Anchor wow! they added torture to the story !!!)

Jan 15 13:39

Buchanan: Is Bolton Steering Trump Into War With Iran?

Well, if he is serious, Trump had best keep an eye on his national security adviser, for a U.S. war on Iran would be a dream come true for John Bolton.

Last September, when Shiite militants launched three mortar shells into the Green Zone in Baghdad, which exploded harmlessly in a vacant lot, Bolton called a series of emergency meetings and directed the Pentagon to prepare a menu of targets, inside Iran, for U.S. air and missile strikes in retaliation.

The Wall Street Journal quoted one U.S. official as saying Bolton’s behavior “rattled people. … People were shocked. It was mind-boggling how cavalier they were about hitting Iran.”

Bolton’s former deputy, Mira Ricardel, reportedly told a gathering the shelling into the Green Zone was “an act of war” to which the U.S. must respond decisively.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Mr. President, a word, please: getting the US into a war in Iran to please your good buddies Netanyahu and Adelson, may be great from a an Israeli perspective, but lousy for We the People.

You should know, if your advisors are not telling you this, but at this point with the American Military, they don't have the money, the troop strength, the manufacturing, or the weaponry to insure a positive outcome to a war against Iran, and if Russia comes in, on Iran's side, the American military be pitted against some very formidable, capable weapons.

The Iranians have proven good faith in abiding by the P5+1 agreement, even though the US has withdrawn from it. No less an august body than the IAEA keeps assuring us that they are in compliance.

And Mr.President, a final reality you need to think about, that is becoming more and more apparent to your base; Israel should not be getting any of the financial and military aid the US gives it, because such transfers are illegal, according to the Symington and Glenn amendments.

Iran, on the other hand, did become a signatory to the NNPT; and we are punishing Iran for something it really hasn't done, and lauding and Funding Israel for breaking American law?!?

What's wrong with this picture??? Damn near everything, Mr. President!!!!

Jan 14 12:45

Bolton Had Pentagon Draw Up "Far-Reaching Military Options To Strike Iran"

The Wall Street Journal published an Iran bombshell Sunday morning, confirming the White House had the Pentagon prepare "military options" to strike the country last year. The sudden request, seen as an unprecedented Iraq-style "shock and awe" attack on Iran, caught the Pentagon off guard, to the point that "State Dept. and Pentagon officials were rattled by the request" which officials further told the WSJ was "mind-boggling" and "cavalier" in terms of how brazen it was.

Jan 14 12:38

Benjamin Netanyahu confirms Israel has carried out air strikes on an Iranian target in Syria

Benjamin Netanyahu has revealed today that Israel carried out an airstrike in Syria on Friday, in a rare public confirmation of such attacks.

The Israeli PM said the country successfully blew up an Iranian weapons storage facility at Syria's biggest airport.

'Just in the last 36 hours the air force attacked Iranian warehouses containing Iranian weapons in the Damascus International Airport,' Netanyahu said at the start of a cabinet meeting today.

Jan 14 09:48

Israel determined to take further action against Iran in Syria - Israeli PM

Israel is prepared to take further action against Iranian targets in Syria to prevent Iran’s gaining a military stronghold in that country, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday.

"Just in the last 36 hours the air force attacked Iranian warehouses with Iranian weapons at the international airport in Damascus. The accumulation of recent attacks proves that we are determined more than ever to take action against Iran in Syria, just as we promised," he said as quoted by his office.

"Overnight, the air force also attacked on the southern front against Hamas targets in Gaza and this morning we announced the exposure of an additional tunnel, a main tunnel, perhaps the most important, that crossed the border into our territory. We are thus approaching the completion of the goal we set at the outset of Operation Northern Shield - the eradication of Hezbollah's tunnels weapon," he said.

Jan 14 08:59

SYRIAN WAR REPORT – JAN. 14, 2019: NETANYAHU CLAIMS “DEPOTS FULL OF IRANIAN WEAPONS” DESTROYED IN SYRIA

Early on January 12, the Israeli Air Force (IAF) carried out an airstrike on Syria. According to reports, Israeli warplanes, coming from the direction of Galilee, fired several missiles at a depot in the Damascus International Airport. The Syrian Air Defense Forces reportedly intercepted at least 8 of them.

Following the airstrike, Israeli warplanes were seen flying at high speed and low altitude over the southern Lebanese city of Tyre.

On January 13, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu claimed that the IAF had targeted several “Iranian depots full of Iranian weapons in the Damascus International Airport”.

This incident was the second Israeli attack on Syria within a few weeks. On December 25, Israeli warplanes targeted several military positions around the Syrian capital. While Israeli sources claimed that the positions were being used by Iranian forces only, the airstrikes injured several Syrian service members.

Jan 14 08:56

White House Asked Pentagon to Provide Military Option to Attack Iran

In early September, during major protests in Iraq’s Shi’ite southeast, a group fired three mortar shells into the Green Zone of Baghdad. The shells landed in an empty lot, doing no damage and causing no casualties. Months later, it appears to be a much bigger story.

That’s because the Wall Street Journal is reporting that in the immediate aftermath, John Bolton and his National Security Council were encouraging a “forceful” US response. In the course of this, Bolton’s team asked the Pentagon to provide President Trump with “military options” to attack Iran.

It appears not to have taken long to go from Shi’ite protests and pinning the mortar fire on a Shi’ite militia, one that is officially part of the Iraqi government, to calls to attack Iran. That’s because US officials, particularly hawks, accuse Shi’ite militias anywhere in the world of being Iranian as a matter of course. In this case, it could’ve easily escalated into a US military attack on Iran.

Jan 13 12:53

Kabul won’t let US use American bases against Iran: Diplomat

Afghanistan will not allow the United States to use its bases in the country to conduct any act of aggression against Iran, says a top Afghan diplomat.

“Relations with neighbors are of special significance to the Afghan government in Kabul. Therefore, we will never allow the US to use its military bases against our neighbors such as Iran and Pakistan,” said Abdul Rahim Sayed Jan, Afghan ambassador to Turkey.

“The presence of US bases in Afghanistan has always been a source of concern for our neighbors, although, in line with the Afghan government’s agreement with the US, Washington can never use these bases against our neighbors,” added the envoy in his address to a conference on Afghanistan in Turkish capital Ankara, Turkish daily Yeni Akit reported on Saturday.

Jan 13 12:52

Do not invite the US to the Persian Gulf: Iran to 'regional enemies'

Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces Major General Mohammad Baqeri says despite its mainly peaceful defense doctrine, the Islamic Republic maintains powerful and categorical military presence in the region, warning certain regional countries against inviting the US to the Persian Gulf to hatch plots against Iran.

Jan 13 12:49

Official: Iran Receiving Revenues of Gas Exports to Iraq in Euro

"The revenues of these (gas) exports are based on euro as stated in the contract (with Iraq)," Montazer Torbati said on Saturday.

He added that the Central Banks of Iran and Iraq have made the decision about the currency to be used for gas exports after the US sanctions against Iran.

Iran is currently exporting 36.24 million cubic meters of gas on a daily basis, which marks a 45% rise in comparison with the figures of the last calendar year (March 21, 2017- March 20, 2018).

Iran’s Plan and Budget Organization announced in a report earlier this month that the country had increased its daily export of gas from 25 million cubic meters to 36.24 million cubic meters in the current Iranian year (started on March 21, 2018).

Jan 13 12:48

S. Korea to Resume Oil Imports from Iran Soon

The announcement came by Kim Jun, chief executive officer and president of South Korea's SK Innovation, owner of South Korea's biggest oil refiner SK energy.

Kim said that his country will restart importing Iran's crude in late January or early February.

In November, South Korea won a six-month waiver from sanctions, imposed by the United States, allowing to purchase a limited amount of Iranian oil.

"As South Korea received a waiver and has been in talks with Iran about the first import volume, it seems (Iran oil) could be brought in late in January or early February at the earliest,” Kim told said on the sidelines of the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas.

South Korean and Japanese buyers were expected to restart Iranian oil imports early this year, industry sources said in November. South Korea can buy up to 200,000 barrels per day of Iran's oil, mostly condensate, an ultra-light form of crude oil under the waiver, the sources said.

Jan 13 07:11

Iran Receiving Revenues of Gas Exports to Iraq in Euro

CEO of the Iranian Gas Engineering and Development Company (IGEDC) Hassan Montazer Torbati announced that the country is due to collect payment for its gas supplies to Iraq in euro.

"The revenues of these (gas) exports are based on euro as stated in the contract (with Iraq)," Montazer Torbati said on Saturday.

He added that the Central Banks of Iran and Iraq have made the decision about the currency to be used for gas exports after the US sanctions against Iran.

Iran is currently exporting 36.24 million cubic meters of gas on a daily basis, which marks a 45% rise in comparison with the figures of the last calendar year (March 21, 2017- March 20, 2018).

Iran’s Plan and Budget Organization announced in a report earlier this month that the country had increased its daily export of gas from 25 million cubic meters to 36.24 million cubic meters in the current Iranian year>>>

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