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Has Washington found its Iranian Chalabi?

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Thickasabrick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 10:25 AM
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Has Washington found its Iranian Chalabi?

A virtual unknown both inside and outside Iran when he arrived in the United States in May, Fakhravar has in the months since then ascended to prominence at a dizzying clip. By midsummer he was rushing from testifying on Capitol Hill one moment to an Iran opposition gathering at the White House the next, meeting regularly with policymakers and influential advisers, chatting with the former Shahs son on his cell phone, and generally being touted as the young, idealistic face of the movement to overthrow the mullahs.

But Fakhravar may be a false messiah. In interviews with more than a dozen Iranian opposition figures, some of them former political prisoners, a different picture emergedone of an opportunist being pushed to the fore by Iran hawks, a reputed jailhouse snitch who was locked up for nonpolitical offenses but reinvented himself as a student activist and political prisoner once behind bars. Fakhravar and his supporters vehemently deny such allegations, saying that the attacks are motivated by petty jealousy and a vendetta by Fakhravars enemies on the Iranian left.

For those like Perle who want the United States to eschew diplomacy in favor of backing regime change, Fakhravar is an essential link in the argument for confrontation with Iran. Rather than reminding Americans of Chalabi, who is now known to have orchestrated much of the Bush administrations bad wmd intelligence, theyd like to summon memories of the 1980s, when Ronald Reagan sought to embolden and unify dissidents in the Soviet Union. But by choosing Fakhravar, they may have inadvertently accomplished the opposite, exposing the ruptures in the pro-democracy movement and throwing into question the notion that Americas problems with Tehran will be solved by a saffron revolution.

Great article by Laura Rozen

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leveymg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 10:56 AM
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1. Oh, great -- another Iranian double-agent.
This guy claims that while he was a political prisoner in Evin prison he was allowed to complete his medical studies and given access to a cell phone to call prominent figures in the Iranian opposition in the United States. Then, after he "escapes", he had no problems boarding an international flight at Tehran's Mehrabad Airport.

The Iranian regime seems to be awfully nice to their political prisoners, or else this guy isn't what he claims to be. Only the neocons in the Bush Administration would be stupid enough to buy that story.

Well, come to think of it, these same neocons did reward Chalabi with the post as head of the Iraqi Oil Ministry (no chance for personal enrichment there) after the CIA arrested him as a suspected double-agent. :eyes:
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