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US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/18/2009 3:38:53 PM   
rulemylife


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US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter

TEHRAN, Iran – Iran convicted an American journalist of spying for the United States and sentenced her to eight years in prison, her lawyer said Saturday, complicating the Obama administration's efforts to break a 30-year-old diplomatic deadlock with Tehran.

The White House said President Barack Obama was "deeply disappointed" by the conviction, while the journalist's father told a radio station his daughter was tricked into making incriminating statements by officials who told her they would free her if she did.

It was the first time Iran has found an American journalist guilty of espionage — a crime that can carry the death penalty.

Roxana Saberi, a 31-year-old dual American-Iranian citizen, was arrested in late January and initially accused of working without press credentials. But earlier this month, an Iranian judge leveled a far more serious allegation, charging her with spying for the United States...................................................

........The United States has called the charges against Saberi baseless, and the State Department said Thursday that Iran would gain U.S. good will if it "responded in a positive way" to the case.

Obama has said he wants to engage Iran in talks on its nuclear program and other issues — a departure from the tough talk of the Bush administration.

Iran has been mostly lukewarm to the overtures, but Iran's hard-line president gave the clearest signal yet on Wednesday that the Islamic Republic was also willing to start a new relationship with Washington.

In a speech, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Iran was preparing new proposals aimed at breaking an impasse with the West over its nuclear program.

But Iran's judiciary is dominated by hard-liners, who some analysts say are trying to derail efforts to improve U.S.-Iran relations.

< Message edited by rulemylife -- 4/18/2009 3:40:18 PM >
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RE: US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/18/2009 4:36:59 PM   
TheHeretic


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        What an awful position this woman is in.  She gets to be an international pawn.  Maybe I'm too cynical, but I can imagine the mullahs passing a death sentence, just so she'll be a bigger bargaining chip on death row.

      Good thoughts for her.

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RE: US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/18/2009 4:42:24 PM   
Politesub53


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quote:

ORIGINAL: TheHeretic

       What an awful position this woman is in.  She gets to be an international pawn.  Maybe I'm too cynical, but I can imagine the mullahs passing a death sentence, just so she'll be a bigger bargaining chip on death row.

     Good thoughts for her.


I agree that this poor lady is just a political pawn. I hope she is freed soon.

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RE: US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/18/2009 5:45:52 PM   
servantforuse


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I thought that our enemies were supposed to love us when George Bush left office and President Obama took the reins. I guess it hasn't worked out that way. 

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RE: US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/18/2009 5:54:30 PM   
Lordandmaster


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Right, obviously this is Obama's fault.

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RE: US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/18/2009 6:06:58 PM   
servantforuse


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I didn't say that at all. We were told though that a different tone would be shown to these rouge nations. I don't see anything changing in the way Iran, North Korea, Syria and others view the United States. I'm not sure that talking nice to them is the answer..

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RE: US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/18/2009 9:48:19 PM   
ThatDamnedPanda


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This woman is in a very difficult spot, and I don't envy her one bit.

It's obvious what's happening here - the Iranians are testing the new President, trying to find out what he's really made of and how easy he'll be to manipulate. They know Obama is eager to open a dialogue with them, so they play hard to get, making him sweat a bit. Then they dangle a little piece of bait in front of him;  sending a clear message that they're willing to consider giving him what he  wants. A couple of days later, they convict an American citizen of trumped-up espionage charges.

Now Obama has to decide - how badly does he want a constructive relationship with the Iranians? What's he willing to give up in order to get that? How hard is he willing to push on the Saberi issue if he knows that if he pushes too hard, they'll yank the bait back and blame him for mishandling their "sincere" gesture to normalize relations? As far as they're concerned, the question of whether he gets her back or not is really not all that important. They don't care one way or the other whether she goes home or dies in an Iranian jail. What they're trying to find out is how the new President handles an extremely delicate diplomatic crisis when there's an enormous pile of chips on the table, and they've devised a typically ingenious way of evaluating that. No matter how it turns out, they're going to learn a huge amount of useful information about him.

They're going to win no matter what, because their only objective is to find out who this guy is who's going to be sitting across the table from them the  next 4 years. If he wins too, by getting her back without torpedoing the embryonic diplomatic relationship, it's going to be an enormous victory. The Iranians aren't the only ones who are about to find out what he's really made of; we're about to find out as well.


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RE: US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/18/2009 9:53:13 PM   
SteelofUtah


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I say we blame Dick Cheney and Condleza Rice...... What wasn't this thread about blaming people who have no control over what has currently happened?

Steel

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RE: US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/19/2009 7:31:15 AM   
MarsBonfire


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Meanwhile... back channel negotiations for her release continue....

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RE: US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/19/2009 7:54:09 AM   
Termyn8or


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FR

What if she really is a spy ? Seems to me we've had that problem here with the Isrealis in the past, and some claim that since we are allies it was not spying, however half of the CIA will quit if this person is ever released. I forgot their name at the moment.

Now we have Panda accusing the Iranian government of having some brains, which might well be true. Time will tell, but I could see it now. All they have to do to show the world a thing or three is release her, revoke her Iranian citizenship and declare her personna non grata. And if they do this without threat or coersion, what will that tell the world ?

They are digging themselves a golden opportuntiy here I think, they might just have some brains.

To paraphrase Paul Harvey; Good day.

T

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RE: US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/19/2009 3:18:57 PM   
Vendaval


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Panda, you have a very astute observation about the Iranian motivation in this situation.


quote:

ORIGINAL: ThatDamnedPanda
They're going to win no matter what, because their only objective is to find out who this guy is who's going to be sitting across the table from them the next 4 years. If he wins too, by getting her back without torpedoing the embryonic diplomatic relationship, it's going to be an enormous victory. The Iranians aren't the only ones who are about to find out what he's really made of; we're about to find out as well.


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RE: US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/19/2009 3:42:27 PM   
Politesub53


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Dont forget there is an Iranian election taking place in 7 weeks time. Internal politics will have played a part in this, harliners Vs those who want dialogue with the West ( yes many do ) and the US especially. That would also account for the statement from the Iranian President.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/8006861.stm

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RE: US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/19/2009 4:20:49 PM   
slvemike4u


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quote:

ORIGINAL: servantforuse

I didn't say that at all. We were told though that a different tone would be shown to these rouge nations. I don't see anything changing in the way Iran, North Korea, Syria and others view the United States. I'm not sure that talking nice to them is the answer..
I agree wholeheartedly servant,what the hell we have given this Obama guy almost three full months to rectify all situations......and he has obviously failed.Time for him to step down and give someone else a chance.

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RE: US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/19/2009 8:32:25 PM   
MrRodgers


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quote:

ORIGINAL: servantforuse

I thought that our enemies were supposed to love us when George Bush left office and President Obama took the reins. I guess it hasn't worked out that way. 

She was arrested in 01/08 and for a year or more...Bush did nothing. He and the power structure couldn't have cared less.

Obama inherits these problems and 3 months is supposed to worked magic.  To the Iranian hardliners, America is still 'the great satan' but with simply a new brown face on it.

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RE: US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/20/2009 8:27:30 AM   
ThatDamnedPanda


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Termyn8or

Now we have Panda accusing the Iranian government of having some brains, which might well be true. Time will tell, but I could see it now. All they have to do to show the world a thing or three is release her, revoke her Iranian citizenship and declare her personna non grata. And if they do this without threat or coersion, what will that tell the world ?


I'm not sure I understand what you're saying here, Term. But if you're suggesting that the Iranians are trying to demonstrate anything to the world, or for that matter even have the slightest interest in demonstrating anything, I couldn't disagree more. Their only objective is to find out something. I don't think they give a damn one way or the other how this thing turns out, because no matter what the outcome they'll come away from it having learned volumes about Obama and what kind of adversary he's going to be over the next 4 years.

And as for why anyone would doubt the intelligence of the Iranians, it would be a grave error to mistake insanity for stupidity. They're crazy, no question about it, but they are definitely not fools. To assume they are because they act in ways that are incomprehensible to us is just playing into their hands, and in fact is part of why they calculatedly cultivate that very image - kind of like the used car salesman who dresses like the only clothing store he ever heard of was the Goodwill. These people are extremely cunning, and they usually know exactly what they are doing. They don't make very many mistakes, and they've got a strong hand to play in this particular round, so I don't see much possibility that they're going to make one here. There's no need for them to make one. They're in complete control of the situation, just the way they planned it, and they know it.


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RE: US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/20/2009 11:25:48 AM   
rulemylife


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quote:

ORIGINAL: ThatDamnedPanda


I'm not sure I understand what you're saying here, Term. But if you're suggesting that the Iranians are trying to demonstrate anything to the world, or for that matter even have the slightest interest in demonstrating anything, I couldn't disagree more. Their only objective is to find out something. I don't think they give a damn one way or the other how this thing turns out, because no matter what the outcome they'll come away from it having learned volumes about Obama and what kind of adversary he's going to be over the next 4 years.

And as for why anyone would doubt the intelligence of the Iranians, it would be a grave error to mistake insanity for stupidity. They're crazy, no question about it, but they are definitely not fools. To assume they are because they act in ways that are incomprehensible to us is just playing into their hands, and in fact is part of why they calculatedly cultivate that very image - kind of like the used car salesman who dresses like the only clothing store he ever heard of was the Goodwill. These people are extremely cunning, and they usually know exactly what they are doing. They don't make very many mistakes, and they've got a strong hand to play in this particular round, so I don't see much possibility that they're going to make one here. There's no need for them to make one. They're in complete control of the situation, just the way they planned it, and they know it.



If you read Politesub's post above, I think you are assuming that all Iranians, even those in government, share one outlook.

The latest development:

Iran orders probe of jailed US journalist's case AP - 35 minutes ago

TEHRAN, Iran – Iran's judiciary ordered a full investigation Monday into the case of an American journalist imprisoned for allegedly spying for the U.S. and allowed the woman's parents to visit her for the first time since she was sentenced to eight years in prison.

The developments in the case of Roxana Saberi appear to be the latest signs that some senior Iranian officials want to ensure tensions over the case do not derail moves toward a dialogue with the Obama administration to break a 30-year diplomatic deadlock between the two countries.

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RE: US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/21/2009 6:15:51 AM   
Sanity


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Not Obama's fault, but still a slap in the face of a president who just days before made a big show of reaching out to Iran. Kind of like the other day when Obama flashed that great big smile while Hugo Chavez handed him a book which blames the United States for virtually every problem there is - a publicity stunt which rocketed the dictator's book to #2 on the New York Times best sellers list, by the way.

All Obama is doing by bending over for America's enemies like this is, he is introducing doubt among them that we are willing to act in order to defend our interests. And so he is emboldening them.

He is embracing Jimmy Carter's foreign policy... which is, bend over and take whatever terrorists and dictators and thugs think you've got coming to you.


quote:

ORIGINAL: Lordandmaster

Right, obviously this is Obama's fault.


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RE: US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/21/2009 7:03:16 AM   
CreativeDominant


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Sanity


Not Obama's fault, but still a slap in the face of a president who just days before made a big show of reaching out to Iran. Kind of like the other day when Obama flashed that great big smile while Hugo Chavez handed him a book which blames the United States for virtually every problem there is - a publicity stunt which rocketed the dictator's book to #2 on the New York Times best sellers list, by the way.

All Obama is doing by bending over for America's enemies like this is, he is introducing doubt among them that we are willing to act in order to defend our interests. And so he is emboldening them.

He is embracing Jimmy Carter's foreign policy... which is, bend over and take whatever terrorists and dictators and thugs think you've got coming to you.


quote:

ORIGINAL: Lordandmaster

Right, obviously this is Obama's fault.

Don't forget, he also sat there and chuckled as Hugo and others took shots at the U. S. and then, when he got up to speak, he thanked them for not taking him to task since he was just a young pup when the U. S. was doing all its "mean, old nasties" to Latin America.

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RE: US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/21/2009 7:04:40 AM   
rulemylife


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So you would prefer "if you are not with us you are against us" and "we'll get them dead or alive" and all the other cowboy bullshit that came out of Bush's mouth?

That certainly did wonders for easing tensions in the world.

By the way, did you notice we haven't gotten them dead or alive?

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RE: US 'deeply disappointed' as Iran convicts reporter - 4/21/2009 7:13:05 AM   
Sanity


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When the world was tense, Libya gave up its nuclear arms manufacturing capabilities without a shot being fired, and countries thought twice about sponsoring terrorism.

Now? It's practically open season on Americans or any thing or anyone else these third world thugs want to skewer, rape or kill.

Taking it in the ass from them doesn't make them nicer, it only makes them meaner. It's not a nice world, and Obama is (hopefully) learning that lesson, even if it is the hard way.


quote:

ORIGINAL: rulemylife

So you would prefer "if you are not with us you are against us" and "we'll get them dead or alive" and all the other cowboy bullshit that came out of Bush's mouth?

That certainly did wonders for easing tensions in the world.

By the way, did you notice we haven't gotten them dead or alive?



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