Christian Action Network

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Bush OKs CIA Operations Against Iran

(The Frontrunner) In an exclusive report, ABC World News (5/22, lead story, 3:10, Ross, 8.78M) said the US “has opened a new front in its showdown with Iran: President Bush has directed the CIA to carry out secret operations against Iran, both inside and outside that country.” While the US “has had many confrontations with Iran over its nuclear program and its influence in Iraq,” this operation is “aimed directly at weakening the Iranian regime.” Current and former intelligence officials tell ABC News that the CIA “has secret presidential approval to mount a black, or covert, operation, to destabilize the Iranian regime. And that it is now underway.” Intelligence officials describe the CIA’s plan “as non-lethal, involving a coordinated campaign of propaganda broadcasts, placement of negative newspaper articles and the manipulation of Iran’s currency and international banking transactions — all playing to perceived vulnerabilities in Iran,” according to former Assistant Secretary of Defense Peter Rodman. 

In a separate report on the White House’s reaction, ABC World News (5/22, story 2, 1:10, Raddatz, 8.78M) said Administration officials Tuesday said “without confirming” the plan’s existence, they “just want to change the behavior of the regime. They said that is exactly what they’re trying to do right now, in many different ways. What they are not trying to do, they said, is bomb Iran.” 

Iran Detains Two More US Citizens. 

Meanwhile, NBC Nightly News (5/22, story 5, 2:05, Williams, 9.87M) reported on “a new flashpoint tonight” between the US and Iran: the detention of Haleh Esfandiari, a dual citizen accused of being a spy. NBC said Esfandiari is “trapped in a power struggle between her two countries.” Experts say her arrest “could be hardliners, those around President Ahmadinejad, trying to scuttle groundbreaking talks between the US and Iran scheduled for next week” and “retaliation for America’s arrest of five Iranians in Iraq.” 

The New York Times (5/23, A3, MacFarquhar, 1.16M) reports Swiss diplomats seeking to visit Esfandiari “have not been given access to her,” the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars said yesterday. David Foley, spokesman for the State Department’s Near Eastern Affairs bureau, said the US has made “repeated requests” through Swiss channels, but “so far all we have gotten is silence.” 

In a separate incident, the Financial Times (5/23, Dinmore, Bozorgmehr) reports Iranian authorities in Tehran have detained an American-Iranian social scientist “as part of a wider investigation into allegations that the US is seeking a ‘soft revolution’ in Iran.” American colleagues said dual national Kian Tajbakhsh, who was working for the Soros Foundation, was detained “in the past few days.” Iran’s intelligence ministry, without naming Tajbakhsh, said on Monday that the Foundation “has been pursuing regime change through establishing an unofficial network and making efforts to expand it.”

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May 23, 2007 - Posted by | Blogroll, news, personal, politics, random, religion, Terrorism, Terrorism In The U.S., Terrorism News, Uncategorized, War-On-Terror

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