Headlines: Khamenei: No Talks with US
18 Aug 2010 18:05
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Talks with US only if sanctions are dropped: Khamenei
AFP | Aug 18, 2010
Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Wednesday that any talks with arch-foe the United States would occur only if Washington drops "sanctions and threats" against Tehran.
"The respected president (Mahmoud Ahmadinejad) and others have said that we are ready for negotiations. It is right. But not with America," Khamenei told a gathering of senior Iranian officials, including Ahmadinejad, in a speech broadcast on state television.
"The reason is that America does not enter the field honestly as a normal negotiator. They should drop the face of a superpower, they should drop threats, they should drop sanctions and they should not set a goal for negotiations. Then we are ready."
CIA forms new center to combat nukes, WMDs
AP | Aug 18, 2010
The CIA is opening a counterproliferation center to combat the spread of dangerous weapons and technology, a move that comes as Iran is on the verge of fueling up a new nuclear power plant.
CIA Director Leon Panetta said Wednesday that the new unit would place CIA operators side by side with the agency's analysts to brainstorm plans to "confront the threat of weapons of mass destruction -- nuclear, chemical and biological."
The center would formalize the collaboration between the agency's analysts and operators, a close working relationship that CIA spokesman George Little said already has yielded intelligence successes.
London blasts Iran over stoning case
AFP | Aug 18, 2010
London said Iran had showed an "unwillingness" to follow even its own standards in recent judicial cases, after a junior foreign minister met Iran's ambassador on Wednesday.
The Foreign Office said Alistair Burt and ambassador Rasoul Movahedian discussed the case of Sakineh Mohammadi-Ashtiani, a 43-year-old mother of two sentenced to death by stoning by an Iranian court.
A Foreign Office statement said: "These cases are indicative of a continued unwillingness by Iran to follow even its own judicial standards and due process.
Rafsanjani urges national unity
AFP | Aug 18, 2010
Chairman of Iran's Expediency Council Ayatollah Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani has called for national unity.
"People, parties and statesmen should be prudent in maintaining unity against foreign meddling and mischief so as to disappoint enemies in fulfilling their vicious objectives," ISNA reported the senior cleric as saying on Tuesday.
'Public Clamor' seeking venue
Mehr | Aug 18, 2010
The director of the play "Public Clamor" is seeking another theater after the cancellation of its performances at Tehran's Molavi Hall following the hall's closure.
Shadmehr Rastin has threatened to stage it in an art gallery or a movie theater if the Center for Dramatic Arts fails to allocate a theater for his play.
"Our troupe is committed to performing the play," Rastin told the Persian service of ISNA on Wednesday.
"Public Clamor" was scheduled to be performed at the Molavi Hall from July 18 for a month.
However, it was canceled after the hall was shut down by the University of Tehran on June 22 with no specific reason mentioned for the abrupt decision.
Clerics responsible for Iran's failed attempts at democracy
WaPo | Aug 18, 2010
Thursday marks the anniversary of one of the most mythologized events in history, the 1953 coup in Iran that ousted Prime Minister Muhammad Mossadeq. CIA complicity in that event has long provoked apologies from American politicians and denunciations from the theocratic regime. The problem with the prevailing narrative? The CIA's role in Mossadeq's demise was largely inconsequential. The institution most responsible for aborting Iran's democratic interlude was the clerical estate, and the Islamic Republic should not be able to whitewash the clerics' culpability.