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Time for America and Iran to talk

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    Salaam Alaikum, Here is another wise and timely article by Imam Elahi regarding the situation in the Middle East. We were told that the newspaper cut an
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 26, 2006
      Salaam Alaikum,

      Here is another wise and timely article by Imam Elahi
      regarding the situation in the Middle East. We were told that the
      newspaper cut an important part of the article because of its space

      [The sentences cut by the Detroit News editors were: "Since its
      inception in 1948, Israel has been dependent on the US for economic
      and military assistance; one would think Israel should show some
      concern for America's image and economic interests in the Islamic world."]

      Read the article in Detroit News…

      Please send a comment to the paper! letters @ detnews.com


      Office Administrator
      Islamic House of Wisdom
      22575 Ann Arbor Trail
      Dearborn Hts., MI 48127


      It's time for America and Iran to talk
      Imam Mohammad Ali Elahi
      March 25, 2006

      "O ye who believe! Let not others' hatred of you incite you to depart
      from justice. Be just: That is next to piety."-- (Quran 5:8)

      I n his State of the Union speech, President George W. Bush expressed
      hope that one day America would be the closest of friends with Iran.
      The president authorized U.S. Ambassador Khalilzad in Iraq to work
      with the Islamic republic toward regional security.

      If that is our goal, then why did Vice President Dick Cheney and
      Ambassador John Bolton, at a recent AIPAC conference in New York,
      threaten Iran with military force while Secretary of State Condoleezza
      Rice allocated $75 million to support the Iranian opposition in an
      effort to destabilize the Islamic republic?

      The United States pledged in the 1981 Algier Accords not to intervene,
      directly or indirectly, politically or militarily in Iran's affairs.
      To demand regime change despite this international agreement is

      Iran is not talking to America, and I am not a spokesman for Iran when
      I say we need a friendly atmosphere for a civil dialogue. If we are
      worried about Iran's cooperation on the nuclear energy issue, then let
      the International Atomic Energy Agency finish its work instead of
      engaging in nervous negotiations on the United Nations Security Council.

      President Bush sent a wrong message when he offered help to India's
      nuclear technology, even though India refused to sign the Nuclear
      Non-Proliferation Treaty, while trying to prevent Iran, which has
      signed the treaty, from having access to nuclear power. Iran doesn't
      deserve to be insulted and treated this way.

      Though thousands of Russian, Israeli, Pakistani, Indian and U.S.
      nuclear weapons surround Iran, Ali Larijani, Iran's Supreme National
      Security Council secretary, told Time magazine that nuclear weapons
      have no place in Iran's national security doctrine because Iran's
      spiritual leader, Ayatollah Khomenei, considered the production of any
      nuclear weapon immoral.

      The former Iranian president talked to us on CNN and for eight years
      urged us toward peaceful dialogue. Following September 11, President
      Khatami was the first who expressed sympathy with our nation. The
      Iranians held candlelight vigils and a minute of silence for the
      tragedy in Tehran's stadium.

      Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright has called for Iran and
      the United States to develop normal relations. Gen. Wesley Clark wants
      America and Iran to talk "face to face instead of yelling threats at
      one another across the fence."

      Iran is an extremely important part of our world. The real wealth of
      Iran is not its geopolitical situation, oil, carpets, pistachios and
      caviar, but its 70 million men and women, more educated than ever,
      with deep spiritual values and a great sense of pride for their
      national independence.

      While the whole world is asking the United States to talk with Iran,
      the Israeli government and lobbies are the only ones asking for war
      with Iran. The real problem the United States has with Iran is not
      over democracy or human rights. The real issue is Iran's opposition to
      the Israeli occupation of Palestine.

      We have to deal with the Katrina homeless, increasing poverty, health
      care cuts and a skyrocketing national debt. Why don't our leaders put
      our house in order instead of talking about another war? Iraq is enough!

      An Arabic proverb says, "The wise man is not bitten from the same hole
      twice," which means: "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame
      on me."

      Imam Mohammad Ali Elahi heads the Islamic House of Wisdom in Dearborn
      Heights. Mail letters to The Detroit News, Editorial Page, 615 W.
      Lafayette, Detroit, MI 48226 or (313) 222-6417 or
      letters @ detnews.com.


      Iran Leader Approves Iraq Talks With U.S.
      By NASSER KARIMI, Associated Press Writer
      Tue Mar 21, 2006

      TEHRAN, Iran - Iran

      Iran's Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said Tuesday that he
      approves of proposed talks between U.S. and Iranian officials on
      Iraq, but warned that the United States must not try to "bully" Iran.

      It was the first confirmation that Khamenei, who holds final say on
      all state matters in Iran, supports the talks. His comments appeared
      aimed at calming criticism by hard-liners over a major shift in policy
      by the regime, which long shunned high-level contacts with a country
      Tehran brands "the Great Satan."

      President Bush

      President Bush said Tuesday he favors the talks and that American
      officials would show Iran "what's right or wrong in their activities
      inside of Iraq."

      Khamenei said that "if the Iranian officials can make the U.S.
      understand some issues about Iraq, there is no problem with the

      "But if the talks mean opening a venue for bullying and imposition by
      the deceitful party (the Americans), then it will be forbidden," he
      said in a nationally televised speech in the holy Shiite city of
      Mashhad in northeastern Iran.

      Both the United States and Iran have said the talks will focus solely
      on stabilizing Iraq and not deal with the heated issue of Iran's
      nuclear program. No time or place has yet been set for talks.

      Khamenei appeared to be weighing in to end hard-line criticism, while
      insisting Iran would not bow to the United States in any talks. He
      said some U.S. officials had depicted the talks as if the United
      States were "summoning Iranian officials."

      "I say here that the U.S. government has no right to summon Iranian
      officials," Khamenei said.

      Khamenei is considered the leader of hard-liners in Iran who largely
      prevented reformists from opening greater contacts with the United
      States. Still, under his rule, Iran has held lower-level talks with
      American officials, particularly in multilateral gatherings for
      efforts to stabilize Afghanistan

      Afghanistan and counter narcotics, for instance.

      Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said Friday that the talks
      could help Iraq form a government, while Ali Larijani, the secretary
      of the Supreme National Security Council, said Iran hopes the meetings
      will help lead to U.S. troop withdrawal.

      Iran has considerable influence with Shiite political parties who
      dominate Iraq's parliament, and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice

      Condoleezza Rice has said U.S.-Iranian talks on Iraq could be "useful."

      In Tuesday's speech, Khamenei also dismissed the threat of U.N.
      Security Council

      U.N. Security Council action over Iran's nuclear program.

      "They threatened us with the Security Council as if the council is the
      end of the world," Khamenei said, adding that Iran will pursue its
      nuclear program and will achieve it with all its "heart and soul."

      Khamenei made the comments as the U.N. Security Council postponed a
      meeting Tuesday on Iran's suspect nuclear program, searching for new
      ways to break a deadlock with Russia and China over the best way to
      pressure Tehran, diplomats said.

      The United States accuses Iran of seeking to develop nuclear weapons;
      Iran says its program aims only to generate electricity and has
      insisted it has a right to carry out uranium enrichment, a key process
      that can develop either fuel for a reactor or material for a nuclear

      The decision to postpone the meeting came after senior diplomats from
      the five veto-wielding members of the council and Germany made little
      headway on bridging their differences during a 4 1/2-hour meeting
      Monday evening. Diplomats said Russia was the main holdout, with China
      following behind.

      That deadlock has forced Britain, France and Germany — the European
      troika leading negotiations on Iran — to reopen the text of a
      statement that would be the first Security Council response. Diplomats
      will focus on bilateral talks to try to find an agreement, they said

      "We'll just keep working on it," U.S. Ambassador John Bolton said.

      The United States and its European allies want a statement reiterating
      demands by the U.N. nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic
      Energy Agency

      International Atomic Energy Agency, that Iran suspend uranium
      enrichment, the process that can be used to generate nuclear power or
      make nuclear weapons. Diplomats said the Russians and Chinese have not
      budged from their opposition to tough language including a demand for
      a report in 14 days on Iran's compliance with the IAEA demands. Moscow
      and Beijing have said that is not enough time, with China suggesting
      30 to 45 days.

      Associated Press Writer Edith M. Lederer contributed to this report
      from the United Nations



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