by ukit – Daily Kos June 14, 2009
As the aftermath of the contested Iranian election continues, it’s worth remembering that it isn’t a military attack by the U.S. or Israel that the Islamic Republic of Iran fears most. It’s a bloodless toppling of the regime as the result of reform and closer ties to the West.
The trademark green of Mr. Mousavi’s campaign, while in theory representing of Islam, aggravated those fears, as many in power saw parallels with the “Orange” and “Rose” revolutions that overthrew repressive regimes in Georgia and the Ukraine.
Ironically, the bogeyman pointed to by fundamentalist Iranian clerics is the same one often cited by American right-wing conspriracists – liberal currency speculator and political philanthropist George Soros.
In 2007, Iran arrested and interrogated Haleh Esfandiari, an academic linked to Soros’ Open Society Institute. The Iranians accused her of plotting to lure Iranian reformers and dissidents into a network aimed at devising a non-violent overthrow of the Islamic government.
The ministry said the foundation had “played key roles in intrigues that have led to colourful revolutions in former Soviet republics in recent years” and now aimed to overthrow Iran’s government.
“In primary interrogations, she reiterated that the Soros Foundation has established an unofficial network with the potential of future broader expansion, whose main objective is overthrowing the system,” it said.
Esfandiari’s alleged confession then led to the arrest of another Soros/ Open Society associate, Kian Tajbakhsh, an Iranian-American social scientist. The Iranian government called Tajbakhsh “the manager and representative of American Soros Foundation in Iran.” Both Esfandiari and Tajbakhsh were eventually freed after wrangling between the Iranian and American governments, but not before eliciting the following “confession” from Tajbakhsh.
The long-term goal of the Soros Foundation is to achieve an open society [in Iran]. The way to achieve this is to create a rift between the rulers and the people. Through this rift, those parts of civil society which were formed and strengthened according to the concept of open society will exert pressure on the rulers to change their conduct. This rift can be created like what happened in Georgia, or else this conduct can be altered gradually, through elections and other “soft” methods. In order to create this rift, either you weaken the central government, or else you strengthen that part of civil society which opposes the government.
The Iranian government’s paranoia even led them to produce this bizarre public service message, featuring a CGI George Soros conspiring with John McCain and the CIA.
Iran’s depiction of the American political elite includes a figure most Americans probably haven’t heard of – Gene Sharp, a political scientist and author of the book “The Politics of Non-Violent Action.”
Sharp’s writings were critical in the over throw of repressive governments in Eastern Europe. He outlined strategies for destroying a regime’s power by undermining their credibility with the people.
Soros funding Iran opposition. Iran calls him “Jewish tycoon and the mastermind of ultra-modern colonialism”
George Soros Taking Heat Over Ties To Pro-Iranian Group
Courtney Comstock – Business Insider November 18, 2009
NIAC is in the news for potentially dodging federal rules for the registration of all lobbyists because NIAC isn’t registered. A journalist says NIAC lobbies, NIAC says it doesn’t.
Soros is taking heat because he funds NIAC, the company whose head of “The New American Policy On Iran” portion, Patrick Disney, is the author of emails that are among other documents suggesting (not very convincingly, it turns out) that NIAC does indeed lobby in breach of federal rules.
The leaked emails emerged during a court case against the Iranian-American journalist, Hassan Daioleslam, who was the first to publicly accuse the group of lobbying.
The group’s leader, Trita Parsi, sued Daioeslam for defamation in 2007. Accusations have since emerged that Soros is tied to the group and that the hedge fund king’s speculative “Soros-style” investment habits, of all things, are further evidence of his being anti-American.
The general consensus is that it will be tough to prove that NIAC is in breach of federal rules, but critics of Soros are speaking out as if he’s been in on the grand scheme the whole time. Ed Lasky titles his American Thinker piece “George Soros’s tentacles wind through pro-Iranian groups.”
Daniel Luban points out in a counter-argument against all of the Soros-haters that this view of “Soros as a shadowy, dangerous and destabilizing servant of the enemy” is pretty anti-Semitic. He then goes on to post another example of Soros-related anti-Semitism, an Iranian propaganda video in which a cartoon version of Soros is cast as the “Jewish tycoon and the mastermind of ultra-modern colonialism.”
Brief plot synopsis: Soros is in a White House office with John McCain and two CIA agents, Bill Smith and Gene Sharp. The four men devise an evil plan for Iranian regime change that involves contacting powerful people with common interests (at which point the camera swings over to sly George Soros who knowingly tips his glasses).
It’s probably unlikely that he is involved in much more than throwing money around; Soros also donates to J street, the pro-Israel, pro-peace counterparty to NIAC’s pro engagement, pro-Iran bent. But Soros is not exactly shying away from political agenda either. Earlier he released a statement about his confidence in Sierra Leon as an emerging market in which he talks about the need for political reform.
With thanks to Aussie Peter Myers for these items.