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By Cyrus the Great 539 B.C.

 


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AN OPEN LETTER TO THE U.S. PRESIDENT

 January 1997
William Jefferson Clinton

Regarding dialogue and rapprochement with the clerical regime in Tehran

Dear Mr. President:

The Azadegan Foundation, an organization dedicated to the liberation and freedom of Iran, congratulates you on your re-election and furthermore wishes you and the United States great success in all of its endeavors. In so doing, the Azadegan is mindful of the world leadership, in-peace and liberty, which you and your great nation stand for. We are also mindful of the dangers and malevolence existing at present and that which will continue well into foreseeable future.

Mr. President, in this letter, we shall endeavor to illuminate those aspects of Tehran's clerical regime which we deem most inimical to the national security and foreign policy interests of the United States as well as the democratic community of nations and the people of Iran. We, at the Azadegan Foundation
in the world of the 21st century principally lies in the leadership role played by the American government. This includes those decisions in economic and foreign policy, involving Iran. It is in this regard that this letter is written with the concurrent hope that you may find the information presented here, of use to yourself and your administration and above all, to the good fortune and well-being of the Iranian and American people.

Mr. President as you undoubtedly are aware, there are efforts currently being undertaken by various officials in the U.S. government attempting to "reach a dialogue" with the Tehran leadership. Under ordinary circumstances, reaching such a bilateral dialogue could be mutually beneficial if both parties are committed to respect and accomodation towards each other and, most importantly, are willing to bargain in good fai th with all its g lobally accepted implications.
fervently belie ve that the fat e of democracy and peace.

We believe the current leadership in Iran has neither the will nor the desire to enter into such a "dialogue" with the United States and to fulfill all the responsibilities that such a bilateral engagement requires. Simply put, the Tehran leadership has its domestic and international policy agendas predetermined and will not alter them unless your administration clearly points out to that leadership that the United States is cognizant of those agendas and finds them unacceptable in a realm of a normalized relationship.

At the Azadegan Foundation, we have discerned five salient points pertaining to the Islamic Republic's domestic and foreign policies which the U.S. government would reject on the basis of contradiction with its political ideals and national security interests. They are:

1) Clerical regime's regional and world-wide sponsorship of terrorism and poloitical assassinations.

2) The mullahs' initiatives in acquiring weapons of mass destruction and incapacitation.

3) The Islamic Republic's possible threats to the impairment of the free flow of oil in the Persian Gulf. 4) Tehran's "harassment" of U.S. economic and political interests in the international community.

5) The clerical leadership's violation of domestic human rights and perpetuation of an undemocratic and despotic regime.

We respectfully recommend, Mr. President, that in order for the mullahs' regime to fully recognize the importance, seriousness, and impact of these issues on the U.S. national interests and world peace, and in order for a meaningful and productive dialogue to take place, the U.S. government should include the following in its dialogue/negotiations:

Demand that the so-called Islamic Republic, immediately cease, or at a minimum, renounce all acts of state-sponsored terrorism, along with ending any interference in the affairs of other governments, causing further instability in the region .
Since its seizure of power in 1979, the leadership in Tehran has been actively supporting terrorist groups such as Hizballah and Hamas in Lebanon and the West Bank. It is currently engaged in pressuring Damascus from seeking a peaceful resolution of the endemic hostilities with Israel and the instability in Lebanon. Moreover, the mullahs"'fingerprints" are behind every radical poitical and religious faction in Algeria, Egypt, and Sudan aimed to establish puppet governments acceptable to Tehran. Indeed, if this occurs, the latter would not only be hostile but counter the interests of the United States.

The backing of the clerical regime, if not its actual participation and support of international terrorism has grave relevance to U.S. security interests, vis-avis the terorist acts against American troops and facilities in Beirut, Riyadh, and most recently, Dhahran. The bombing of the World Trade Center in New York is not unlikely to be traceable to the mullahs in Tehran. The United States should make known to the Tehran authorities that it has "zero tolerance" to that kind of international modus operandi. The other significant aspect of the Islamic Republic's terrorist program is its assassination campaign. This agenda which was recently outlined in the November 11, 1996 issue of the Atlantic TIME, is ruthlessly waged against political activists, journalists, and anyone deemed dangerous to the status-quo in Tehran.

Over the past decade, over 100 of these individuals have been assassinated by the intelligence officers, professional "hit squads" and assassins hired by the mullahs in Iran. The most notable of this assassination campaign aimed against the emigre dissidents are: former Prime Minister Shahpour Bakhtyar (murdered in Paris), three leaders of a Kurdish minority in Iran (murdered in Germany). Recently, in the court proceedings held in Berlin, Iran's ex-intelligence operatives testified and disclosed the complicity and approval for these assassinations by several of the Islamic Republic's leaders, including its President Hashemi Rafsanjani, and its Religious Leader, All Khamenei. The latest victim of these death squads,

was Iranian writer, reformer and journalist, Dr. Reza Mazlouman, who was assassinated in his apartment in Paris, on May 27, 1996. Such accounts testify to the utter intolerance of the current regime towards any opposition and the length it will go to eliminate those whom it perceives as a threat to its hold on power.

Exert intense and vigorous international pressure on Iran to sign multi-lateral agreements to renounce the acquisition and use of weapons of mass destruction and civilian incapacitation.

There is increasing empirical evidence that Iran is acquiring nuclear weapons technology and the means to deliver them. Various world-wide intelligence sources report, with high degree of credibility, that much of this technology has been acquired from sources in the former Soviet Union and its former central Asian Republics, North Korea, and the People's Republic of China. It is against these actual and alleged providers that the United States must exert its influence in order to halt those sources from supplying the irresponsible mullahs.

It should be further noted that the Russian government, within the past two years, has negotiated a commercial agreement with the clerical regime to provide Iran with nuclear energy for its electric power grid. No adequate provisions have yet been made to prevent the Islamic Republic from reprocessing the spent Uranium or other nuclear waste products to weapons grade materials.

Secondly, the mullahs are acquiring longer range NoDong surface-to-surface -intermediate range (IRBM) missiles; these missiles can reach Israel, not to mention all vital areas of Saudi Arabia and the Persian Gulf.

Encourage Iran (with other Persian Gulf States) to pledge non-interference in innocent commercial traffic in the Persian Gulf.

The great concern is rightly the unrestricted, unhampered flow of oil in the Persian Gulf and through the Strait of Hormuz The presence of antiship missile boats and shore-based launchers is a
persistent reminder of the vulnerability of commercial traffic and of U.S. Naval weapons to the mullahs aggressive fire power. This issue, may very well turn out to be the most critical national security problem for the United States in the 21 st century. Send an unambiguous message to the clerical leadership in Tehran that the United States will not tolerate subversion or "harassment" ofAmerican political and economic interests in the international arena. Furthermore, the United States must emphasize that the continuation of such actions by the Islamic Republic constitutes an extremely unfriendl if s not a provocative act which may result in an American retalliatory response.

Over the past decade the Tehran regime has engaged in various activities world-wide which might be considered harassing and provocative ranging from anti-American propaganda to reported counterfitting of U.S. currency for various purposes. Though the clerical leaderhip has denied these allegations there are sufficient instances and evidentiary materials to substantiate the allegations. Moreover, the different congressional committees charged with relevant responsibilities, have held hearings on these allegations. The mounting evidence pointing to the mullahs as the source for counterfitting U.S. currency is indeed a serious problem bordering economic warfare against the United States and violating a fundamental principle of international law. Secondly, and even more serious and dangerous to U.S. national interests is that this bogus currency is most likely used to finance international terrorism and the illegal purchase of arms and munitions required to carry out these acts.

The anti-American propaganda has been effective in that it has endangered the lives of American citizens, businessmen, tourists, government representatives, and military personnel, especially in all parts of the Middle East and even beyond. These anti-American incidents in frequency have occurred in Egypt, Sudan, Algeria, Lebanon and Saudi Arabia and are closely linked to the terrorist activities in those countries

Urge the Tehran government to subscribe to all treaties and conventions guaranteeing and recognizing human rights and basic freedoms Lr its own people in Iran, and elsewhere in the international communih. This should be especially so, for those emigres opposing the regime.

The human rights record of the Tehran regime is deplorable. It rules in an undemocratic and despotic manner, denying all basic rights to its citizens and even less to its minority populations. It has ruthlessly suppressed all domestic opposition and has waged a campaign of terror and assassination against the Iranian expatriates abroad. All of this is in violation of all treaties and conventions on human rights to which the United States is a signatory and actively supports them as a fundamental part of its foreign policy program. Information continuously received from present day Iran portrays the intolerable political environment there. Many leading intellectuals, students, and potential political oppositionists are either jailed or are under house arrest. At a minimum, they are under the close surveillance by government agents. The "average" citizen, though not politically active, is well aware of what confronts him, should he raise his voice against the leadership. The former's awareness of the danger to their physical, economic, or social survival, stems from their knowledge of governmental suppression and intimidation exercised by the regime since its usurpation of power in 1979. Indeed it may be said that this regime is the greatest enemy that the Iranian people have had to confront since the mongol incursion of the middle ages.

Mr. President, it has been a persistent responsibilty, and indeed, the patriotic duty of the Azadegan Foundation to enumerate the unfortunate and sad decay of Iran in its domestic and international policies during the past 6500 days. It has been tragic for the benevolent people of Iran along with others affected by it all over the globe. We, in the Foundation, recognize the extensive International obligations and concerns of the United States. We also recognize the current and future role of Iran, especially as it concerns the economic, political, and security
interests of the United States. We also, unequivocally, believe that a free and a democratic Iran, not only serves the good and welfare ofthe Iranian people but to no lesser extent, the interests of the United States. The friendly ties between the U.S. and Iran, which existed prior to 1979, is a testimony to the mutual benefits that can accrue to both nations in such relationships.

The strategic importance of Iran to the United States, and the economic and the technological importance of the U.S. to Iran is manifest to all. A cordial, friendly and mutually beneficial relationship between Iran and the United States is a high-priority goal that hopefully can be realized in the foreseeable future.

Mr. President, we ask that before considering any dialogue with the Tehran authorities, the latter be made to agree upon the five points herein discussed as the starting criteria. In the face of reality, however, it is highly unlikely for the clerics to yield to reason and dialogue. Nonetheless, we must point out that any mili , action or surgical operations against Iran, will serve only to strengthen the position of the mullahs and rg eatly increase the 12robability of a retaliatory action aimed at Iran's neighbors in the region, along with enabling the clerics to manipulate the Iranian nationalism, for their own gain . Therefore, we believe that the desire for rapprochement and normalizafoncan only occur with the replacement of this undemocratic regime with a government dedicated to democracy and international responsibility.

The Azadegan Foundation will always support the Iranian people in their struggle for a free and democratic Iran and ask that you and your government give them your moral and political support so that they may overcome the tyranny of the clerics, regain their international dignity and bring peace and stability to the region. The United States has all the instruments of moral, political and economic power to do so thus, we cordially ask you to help the Iranian people (who are ready to change this despotic regime) in their noble efforts for freedom and democracy.

May God bless the American and Iranian people in their common quest for peace and tranquillity in the World of today and tomorrow.

 



 

 

 

 


 

 






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