The major UN members have
agreed on a package of escalating sanctions against Iran, if Iran does not halt
its nuclear weapons program. Iran says it will ignore these sanctions. But it
cannot. The Arabs have leaned on nations like toe China and Russia, to support
the sanctions. Arabs see an Iran with nuclear weapons as a direct threat.
March 13, 2007: Russia has refused to ship
the nuclear fuel for Irans first power plant, because the Iranians have been
slow to pay their bills. Russian firms were to be paid about $25 million a
month for their work on the nuclear plant, but apparently the Iranians are two
March 12, 2007: The government is allowing
some closed opposition newspapers to open up again. Over a hundred opposition
newspapers and magazines have been closed in the last year or so. But that did
not stop the criticism, which was still being published via the Internet.
March 8, 2007: The government accuses
Pakistan of being a terrorist sanctuary. Iranian Baluchi separatists take
refuge with fellow Baluchis in Pakistan, and Sunni terrorist organizations like
al Qaeda murder Pakistani Shia, and even operate in eastern Iran. Persecution
of Pakistani Shia has been going on for decades, but lately the Baluchi
separatists have become more active, and more Sunni terrorist groups have been
operating in eastern Iran. This Sunni terrorism is not a big deal, except that,
when combined with all the other separatist and religious terrorism, it is a
March 5, 2007: The government denied that it
was supporting rebel Shia tribes in northern Yemen, but admitted that some
Iranian religious charities did support the Yemen tribes. In Iran, the
religious charities are often a cover for espionage and secret support for
March 3, 2007: Police broke up a women's
right demonstration in the capital, arresting about 30 of the women. While the
government refuses to give women equal (to men) legal rights, they have also
backed off on the promised crackdown on the way women dress and act in public.
So couples holding hands are not being arrested, nor are women harassed if they
are not "dressed properly." The government wants to avoid widespread
demonstrations by women. Under Islamic law, women have fewer legal rights and
protections than men.