» Three Sides of Conquering Monstrous ISIS
Editorial of Iran newspaper focuses on defeating ISIS and the role Iran played in the war against this terrorist group.
The editorial starts with ISIS emergence 6 years ago and how it made all in the region and the world desperate. Sudden formation and expansion of ISIS created hopelessness throughout the Middle East region – particularly in countries where ISIS was present and active. Following activities of this terrorist group, Europe too lost all hope.
The editorial then suggests: perhaps no one ever thought that the region and the world would see the day of capturing ISIS’s last stronghold, and the life of this group coming to an end. At some point, some of the experienced figures of the region, as well as some European countries and the U.S., were even talking of accepting the phenomenon of ISIS as a reality.
According to the editorial, no such thoughts ever existed in Iran. A national resolve was shaped in the country that by any means possible, be it military or non-military, establishment and growth of this terrorist group in the region had to be stopped. The editorialist claims that what prepared the ground for the absolute destruction of ISIS in Iraq and Syria was Iran’s presence on the ground.
The editorial goes on to claim at the end that three people played significant roles in a victory over ISIS in Iraq and Syria. Iranian supreme leader Ali Khamenei, commander of IRGC Quds Force Qassem Suleimani, and Iraqi religious authority Sistani.
An editorial in “Iran” Daily on November 22, 2017
» Planning 2018 Budget in These Critical Days
Editorial of Ebtekar newspaper sheds light on the difficulties ahead in planning Iran’s budget for 2018.
In the beginning, the editorial describes dire existing conditions in Iran: former president Ahmadinejad and his men have entered the political scene and are rebelling; hardliners keep slamming the government, with their powerful media highlighting the government’s failures; reformists are after their demands from Rouhani’s government with which they brought voters to ballot boxes for him; deadly earthquake in western Iran has become the center of new political conflicts among different factions; and, on international scene, leadership of the White House is centering its aggressive forces on Iran, while making European countries such as France and Germany go along with it.
In such critical days, the editorial continues, Iranian budget and planning managers must offer the 2018 Budget Bill to Iranian Parliament. Economic experts focusing on political economy hold that annual budget of each country, particularly Iran, is the most political document of that country, and its finalized form indicates winners and losers of ‘hard-fought battles’.
That is why, the editorialist asserts at the end, budget planners are having a tough time these days. On the one hand, MPs are bargaining to get a larger piece of the ‘budget cake’ for their constituencies. On the other hand, ministers and even head of government try to convince the budget planners of the significance of their job, reminding them that without a budget, they cannot run the country. Also, other small and large organizations from the judiciary and legislative branches are bargainings to increase their own shares from the budget.
An editorial in “Ebtekar” on November 20, 2017
» On Hashemi Rafsanjani’s Missing Will
The editorial of Etemad newspaper addresses the question of missing ‘will’ of Hashemi Rafsanjani, one of the founding fathers of the Iranian revolution and head of Iran’s Expediency Council at the time of his death. Rafsanjani’s family have recently said they know nothing of the whereabouts of the will.
The editorial asserts: as Rafsanjani was possibly well aware of such document’s significance, it is highly unlikely that he had not kept copies of his own will in ‘safe places’. Therefore, there are many questions in this regard: Where? And how come his family and next of kin do not know where it is? Does the fact that they don’t know of its whereabouts have a political message? How important is Hashemi Rafsanjani’s will? Had he written a political will or is it just a normal family one?
As to the possible significance of Rafsanjani’s will, the editorial reminds the readers that Rafsanjani, throughout his life, constantly wrote diaries, mostly consisting of short general memos. And all political experts now see these memos as a significant source to study the Iranian Revolution. Rafsanjani was well aware of being an ‘unprecedented treasure of secrets’ of the regime, so he must have known the significance of his own will.
In the end, the editorialist suggests that given ‘Rafsanjani’s 50-year old friendship’ with Iran’s leader Ali Khamenei, as well as his friendships and enmities with Iran’s high-ranking officials and authorities, this ‘will’ is so important that its disappearance, or even its possible reappearance in future, can have significant political implications. But for now, the disappearance of the will is a puzzle that one can think about and try to find an answer to.
An editorial in “Etemad” on November 19, 2017
♦ Former political prisoner attacked by security forces
On November 21, an armed person tried to assassinate former political prisoner Mohammad Nikbakht. According to the report of Center for Human Rights, while Mohammad Nikbakht was driving home in his car, he was shot 3 times by passengers of an unknown car.
In a video clip, Mohammad Nikbakht considered this action as an attack against himself by security and state forces, saying he and his family have no enemies but the security forces. Nikbakht added he and his family are not safe.
According to reports, this former political prisoner had previously been threatened to death by security forces.
♦ Forger of big titles arrested
In a statement, Intelligence Ministry announced arresting a person who forged different titles such as Special Inspector of Leader’s Office and Agent of Intelligence Ministry to blackmail his victims in Tehran and Karaj. In searching his house, different kinds of forged ID cards such as advisor to public and revolutionary courts, Tehran prosecutor, and deputy Intelligence Minister were found.
Fars news agency
♦ Iranian, Turkish Chiefs of General Staff of Armed Forces meet
Iran’s Chief of General Staff of Armed Forces Major General Mohammad Bagheri meet with his Turkish counterpart in Sochi, Russia. In this meeting, they discussed different issues including regional changes particularly developments in Syria. Before this meeting, Bagheri had met and talked with his Russian counterpart as well.
♦ Advisor to president on Sochi summit
Hessamoldin Ashena, the advisor to the Iranian president, pointed out to the trilateral summit of Chiefs of General Staff of Armed Forces of Iran, Russia, and Turkey, saying that with the multilateral cooperation the rules of the game can be changed. Ashena wrote in his Telegram Channel that during ‘incessant fight with post-modern terrorism, it became clear that through military and intelligence synergy and creating multilateral coalitions, one can not only have field achievements but can change even the game court.’
♦ Shamkhani: We reached our goals in Syria
Ali Shamkhani, representative of Ali Khamenei in Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, pointed out to some analysis trying to create divisions between Iran and Russia, emphasizing that Iran has achieved its goals in overthrowing ISIS terrorists in Iraq and Syria, and will not be deceived by anyone.
Shamkhani added even though Russia played a significant role in the Syrian crisis, Russians entered the scene in 2015, while the Syrian crisis started in 2011. The representative of supreme leader urged that in those 4 years, it was Iran, Syria, and Resistance forces that did not allow the terrorists to realize their goal of overthrowing Bashar Assad.
♦ Kamalvandi: EU to help 20 million Euros to Iran
Spokesperson of Atomic Energy Organization of Iran Behrouz Kamalvandi announced that the European Union intends to help 20 million Euros to Iran to develop safe nuclear energy. Kamalvandi added this measure shows Europeans welcome cooperation with Iran in the nuclear field. He said Iran can have good cooperation with EU on issues such as safety, safeguards, and fusion.
♦ Iran after new European customers for exporting oil
Deputy Oil Minister Marzieh Shahedaee said Iran is negotiating with new customers for selling oil, and its approach is increasing export of crude oil to European countries. She added the fact that Asian customers of Iran’s oil have cut down oil import from Iran does not mean Iran’s oil export market has become unstable. Deputy Oil Minister urged that after negotiations with European countries become fruitful, the share of selling oil to the green continent will increase in the basket of Iran’s oil export.
♦ Vaezi: Sochi negotiations, preliminary steps for solving Syrian crisis
Iran’s Chief of Staff of President Mahmoud Vaezi called Sochi negotiations and trip of Iranian and Turkish presidents to Russia significant, adding Sochi negotiations are effective preliminary steps in solving the crisis in Syria.
As for Europe negotiating with Iran about missile program, Vaezi said, ‘we have repeatedly announced we will not negotiate with any countries about our missile capability, and we believe such issues are our country’s domestic affair.’
♦ Lawmaker: French should know Iran’s missile program is non-negotiable
Mohammad Javad Jamali, the member of National Security and Foreign Relations Commission in Iran’s Parliament, pointed out to the division of labor between Europe and the U.S. for putting pressure on Iran, adding officials must be careful of coordination between France and the U.S.
Jamali also criticized remarks of French President Emanuel Macron about restricting Iran’s missile program, urging that this program is defensive and preventive and is no threat for any country.
♦ Ghalibaf: Fundamentalists are bad at setting targets, methods
Mohammad Bagher Ghalibaf, former mayor of Tehran and current member of Expediency Council of Iran, criticized Iranian hardliners, also known as fundamentalists, for their performance. Ghalibaf said whereas fundamentalists call themselves ‘believers in Khomeini’s school’, their record is not defensible, and they have even failed in setting targets and choosing methods.
Ghalibaf added that the reality is there are two main currents – fundamentalists and reformists – that have had impacts on all dimensions of the society, domestic and foreign policies and the regime’s performance.
♦ Discovery of 430 billion Tomans of smuggled goods, 47 tons of narcotic drugs
Hormozgan Police Chief Brigadier-General Azizollah Malaki announced identification and destruction of 34 drug trafficking gangs in this province during the first 8 months of this year, adding that there were 3 armed conflicts between the police and drug dealers, in which 3 dealers were killed and 5 injured.
Malaki said during this 8-month period, 2,412 heavy and light automobiles carrying smuggled goods were identified and seized. He added 430 billion tomans of smuggled goods and 47,500 of different kinds of narcotic drugs have been discovered and seized during this time.
♦ Lawmaker: Government should revise relationship with France
Hossein Naqavi Hosseini, the spokesperson of National Security and Foreign Policy Commission in Iran’s Parliament, pointed to recent anti-Iranian remarks of French authorities, saying Iranian government must revise its relationship with France.
Naqavi Hosseini mentioned French president’s recent remarks about necessity of restricting Iran’s influence in the region, adding that despite France’s special place in Iran’s international deals – particularly signing contracts with this country after JCPOA in the fields of oil and automobile – ‘we are witnessing that the French are moving in accordance with U.S. policies in the region.’
♦ Qassem Suleimani in Bukamal operation
Regional media have published images of Major General Qassem Suleimani, commander of IRGC Quds Force, in Bukamal region where an operation is underway against ISIS forces. According to Mayadin, the Bukamal operation has been under direct command of Suleimani.
♦ Plainclothesmen attack Ahmadinejad’s supporters
Supporters of former president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad claimed a group of plainclothesmen attacked them in Shah Abdulazim Shrine, southern Tehran, trying to drive them out of there. Bahar Government Telegram, close to Ahmadinejad, has published footages of this attack, saying ‘plainclothesmen’ and ‘mercenaries’ attacked them.
On Wednesday 15, Hamid Baghaei, executive deputy of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his close friend, shunned from going to his third court session, announcing that in protest to behaviors of judiciary system, he would stage a sit-in in Shah Abdulazim Shrine. On the first day of sit-in, Ahmadinejad became present among protesters, and severely criticized heads of legislative and judiciary branches under the name of ‘Larijani Family’, saying ‘we are against Larijani family, and we are against their being in charge of the country and doing all kinds of injustices to people.’ Ahmadinejad accused Larijani brothers, saying since his government ‘fought corruption’, it has become accused of corruption by the judiciary system itself.
♦ Export of 4 million barrels of crude oil from South Pars
Executer of development project of oil layers in South Pars pointed out that the last shipment of oil from oil layers of South Pars was exported to international destinations last week, adding that since the beginning of current year, about 4,260,000 barrels of crude oil were exported to international destinations in 8 stages. Fardin Asaadi said currently 25,000 barrels of oil are drilled from oil layers per day on average.
♦ Amirifar: Ahmadinejad serves Baghaei, not people
Abbas Amirifar, mass prayer leader in president’s office during Ahmadinejad’s government, highlighted the difference between Ahmadinejad and Khatami, two former presidents of Iran, saying whereas Khatami has a party and supporters and some of religious authorities back him up, there is not even one religious authorities who support Ahmadinejad.
Amirifar also made some disclosures mostly about Ahmadinejad’s vice president, Hamid Baghaei. He claimed ‘Baghaei had agents in Ahmadinejad’s office who controlled those who could meet with him’, urging that Baghaei was in charge of Ahmadinejad’s team. Amirifar suggested, ‘in my opinion, Ahmadinejad, in his writings, should no longer write “servant of the people”, but should say “servant of Baghaei”’.