Sunday, April 20, 2014

20-Apr-14: World's "biggest victim of terrorism" is deeply concerned that accusing Iran of sponsoring terror threatens US legal system

BBC gives voice to Iran complaints [Image Source]
Iran's English-language propaganda machine is churning away furiously today in the wake of the US move, described here yesterday ["19-Apr-14: One small step for civilized society; one substantial leap in the fight against the terrorists"] to confiscate a series of Iranian-owned assets on US soil in order to satisfy legal judgments obtained by victims of Iranian terror. That welcome measure allows victims of several terrorist outrages for which responsibility was determined to be Iranian to recover damages against specific Iranian-regime assets in North America.

The FARS news agency, which calls itself "Iran's leading independent news agency" (for the acronym-challenged, its name is pronounced "Farce") quotes the Speaker of the Iranian parliament, Ali Larijani whom it describes as having "lashed out at the US for its move". Larijani declared that the decision by an American court
can ruin the American judiciary system's competency and creditability... The US is escalating tension with Iran. [The court ruling is] in contradiction to realities, void of legal validity and even in breach of US commitments to guarantee religious freedom for its citizens. The top Iranian parliamentarian argued that the US court verdict brings the creditability of the US judiciary system into question. [FARS, today]
Iran's outrage, and its deep concern for the international standing of American justice, appear to stem from the belief, as their Foreign Ministry spokesperson says, that
Iran, itself, is a victim of terrorism and the baseless claims on Iran's involvement in supporting terrorism are fabricated and worthless. [FARS, today]
Most of the rest of the world sees Iran in a fairly different light. At Brookings, for instance, their researchers assert this about today's Iran:
Since the 1979 Islamic revolution, Iran has backed an array of terrorist groups. These groups have fostered unrest in Iraq and the oil-rich Gulf Kingdoms, killed Iran’s enemies in Europe, and struck at enemies like Israel and the United States. Most infamously for Americans, Iran has backed the Lebanese Hizballah, providing it with hundreds of millions of dollars, sophisticated arms, and advanced training. Among its many operations, Hizballah in 1983 bombed the U.S. embassy and the Marine barracks hosting U.S. peacekeepers in Beirut, killing 17 embassy officials and 241 Marines. Iran has also backed Hizballah in its numerous operations against Israel, including a 2012 bus bombing in Bulgaria that killed five Israeli tourists and the bus driver, and has given money and weapons to Hamas, which has used these to attack Israel in repeated clashes. Tehran has also quietly maintained links to Al Qaeda itself, hosting several important figures though also restricting their activities. ["Iran’s Terrorism Problem", Daniel L. Byman | November 21, 2013] 
A new Iranian postage stamp is unveiled in a solemn ceremony
at Iran's first congress of Iranian victims of terror, August 30, 2013
[Image Source]
Iran's victims of terrorism are organized into a body called Habilian Association, that refers to itself as
a Human Rights NGO comprising of a group of families who have lost their most beloved ones in terrorist operations during the early years of Iran after the Islamic Revolution... brutally killed by the western-supported terrorist groups, such as Mujahedin-e Khalq (a.k.a. MKO, MEK, PMOI, NCRI, Rajavis’ cult), which is a clear evidence on radical groups’ violence and a historic and unassailable document in order to prove the fact that Islamic Republic of Iran has been the biggest victim of terrorism." [Source]
It held a first major one-day gathering on August 30, 2013 under the title "1st National Congress of 17000 Iranian Terror Victims":
By bringing together experts across the country and all around the world, the one-day conference intends to provide a platform for exchanging ideas that will help to examine different aspects of terrorism, terror groups, and a bunch of relevant issues...  [The website - the name refers to the number of terror victims Iran says it has.]
A major highlight of the congress was the unveiling of a new postage stamp honoring the 17,000 victims. If something else came out of it that reflected opposition to terrorism in all its hideous forms, we're not sure what that was.

The official report mentions the identities of some of illustrious participants: Iran’s Minister of Intelligence; the commander of Iran’s Basij Force (best known for its ongoing role in "the suppression of dissident gatherings"); a number of members of the Majlis; ambassadors to Iran from Sudan, Iraq, Afghanistan, Kuwait, Jordan, Hezbollah, Islamic Jihad and Palestine as well as the Ayatollah Khamenei’s representative at the Foundation of Martyrs and Veterans Affairs. (Iran's Minister of Foreign Affairs was a last-minute no-show, but he sent his special assistant.) For an NGO allegedly un-connected to the regime, it's an impressive line-up of official figures opposed to terror. Seeing Islamic Jihad and Hezbollah in that category is especially memorable.

So too is the favorable attention paid by the organizers to a 'scientific' paper delivered by a German-Australian called Töben, notorious in several parts of the world for his energetic denials that the Nazi Holocaust of the Jews ever happened, and for the jail time he has served as a result.

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