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Iran Super Thread- Merged

CougarDaddy said:
HA! Perhaps McCain will put on his old USN flight suit and pilot an F18 to lead the carrier air wings in air strikes against Tehran!
Since when is old too old to fly? Retired USAF General and sound barrier breaker legend Chuck Yeager did it on an F15 a few years ago, IIRC.

While I am sure Senator McCain might love to do that, his injuries suffered at the hands of NVA torturers are so severe he cannot even raise his hand to salute, or use a keyboard, hence the Democrats attack on him "not able to send an email". (Usually he dictates his replies to an assistant or his wife to type).
So is Iran hiding secret nuclear weapons? This article explores that question:
(This comes just before Ahmedinijad actually made a clear THUMBS DOWN gesture during/after Pres. Bush's speech at the UN General Assembly yesterday, IIRC.)

Monday, September 22, 2008 9:44 AM EDT
The Associated Press
By GEORGE JAHN Associated Press Writer

VIENNA, Austria (AP) — The head of the International Atomic Energy Agency warned Monday that Iran may be hiding secret nuclear activities, comments that appeared to reflect a high level of frustration with stonewalling of his investigators.

A senior Iranian envoy accused the United States of trying to use the IAEA as a tool in Washington's confrontation with Tehran. Iran, he said, has demonstrated full cooperation with the agency. Allegations of nuclear weapons work by Tehran is based on forged documents and the issue is closed, the envoy said.

The two men spoke at the start of a 35-nation board IAEA meeting. With time running out before Tehran develops potential nuclear weapons capacity, some worry that Israel or the U.S. might resort to military strikes if they believe all diplomatic options have been exhausted.

And with Tehran showing no signs of giving up uranium enrichment or heeding other international demands, the diplomatic window appears to be closing.

IAEA head Mohamed ElBaradei said Iran's stonewalling of his agency was a "serious concern."

"Iran needs to give the agency substantive information" to clear up suspicions, he told the closed board meeting, in comments made available to reporters. He rejected the Iranian suggestion that the IAEA probe could expose non-nuclear military secrets, saying the IAEA "does not in any way seek to 'pry' into Iran's conventional or missile-related military activities."

"We need, however, to make use of all relevant information to be able to confirm that no nuclear material is being used for nuclear weapons purposes," he said, urging Iran to "implement all measures required to build confidence in the exclusively peaceful nature of its nuclear program at the earliest possible date."

If Tehran fails to do so, the IAEA "will not be able to provide credible assurances about the absence of undeclared nuclear material and activities in Iran," he said.

source: http://www.charter.net/news/read.php?ps=1012&rip_id=%3CD93BQ4E80%40news.ap.org%3E&_LT=HOME_LARSDCCLM_UNEWS

another source: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080922/ap_on_re_eu/eu_nuclear_iran
Thucydides said:
Will anyone be surprised at this?


Their day is coming.

I do think we can agree on 'something wicked this way comes', and it will be an uphill battle from the get go.


Iran may feel the effects of the "oil bubble", and this might be what does the trick:


Iran’s Oil Woes Threaten the Mullahs

September 26, 2008 - by Meir Javedanfar

Much to the dismay of Ahmadinejad’s government, oil prices seem to be falling. From a record $147 in July, oil is now trading at around $100 per barrel. And despite Hurricanes Gustav and Ike, which usually push the price of oil up, there is talk that prices may go down to $80 or even to the [1] $70 per barrel mark.

“Oil prices are dropping because they are inflated,” says Fadel Gheit, senior energy analyst for Oppenheimer, in an [2] interview with Business Week. “You cannot sustain an artificial price forever. At the end of the day supply-demand fundamentals will take over.” According to an increasing number of analysts, not even the mighty [3] Chinese economy and its insatiable appetite for oil can keep prices at current levels, because a lot of “hype” is involved in estimating future levels of demand.

The Iranians see no hype in the danger which the falling price of oil entails for them. This concern was openly expressed by Iran’s oil minister, who [4] said that as far as his government is concerned, “$100 a barrel was the lowest appropriate price.” Meanwhile, at the recent OPEC meeting, Iran failed to convince other members to [5] cut production, in order  to push oil prices up. Therefore, unless there is a serious event, the government of President Ahmadinejad may find itself facing the nightmare scenario of falling oil prices.

With presidential elections 10 months away and sanctions hurting, this is the last thing Ahmadinejad needs. High oil prices have been like a morphine injection which has kept the sick Iranian economy alive. Despite oil and gas [6] income for this year jumping to $81 billion, representing a whopping 31% increase from last year, Iranian people have seen no improvement in their economic welfare. If anything, the situation is getting worse. Inflation has reached the post-revolution record level of [7] 27%. To make matters worse, the government of Ahmadinejad is coming up with new ways to reduce subsidies which Iran’s citizens receive. First it introduced its controversial [8] petrol-rationing scheme in June 2007. This scheme failed miserably in its plans to reduce traffic and pollution.

Now the Ahmadinejad government wants to reduce government subsidies paid to Iranian families for their gas and electricity bill as well. The first part of this plan, which many Iranians find very annoying, involves each family filling out forms from the government, in which they have to declare their income and assets. Many rich people are openly saying that they are cheating, because declaring a high income could translate into a serious fall in the subsidies received. Others are withdrawing money from the banks in order to hide it from the government inspector’s prying eyes, thus leading to a fall in savings levels.

Should this plan go through, it could cause much pain to Iran’s population. The subsidy replacement plan, which involves paying the subsidy money directly into families’ bank accounts — instead of government paying the subsidy amount directly to the electricity company — is not expected to maintain its value in accordance with high inflation levels. This will mean that if inflation levels stay the same until next year, the value of the subsidy received in cash will be 27% less than last year. With falling oil prices, it is very likely that the government will have to go through with this plan. This will lead to serious damage to Ahmadinejad’s popularity. It will also antagonize Iran’s population. The revolution has not brought them edalat (justice). Now high oil prices, their only hope for better economic welfare, are failing them too.

Despite the rising unpopularity at home, what worries Iran’s leadership even more is that, as history has shown them, lowering oil prices could mean having to be flexible with the West. This was first shown in the mid 1980s, when Iran was fighting Iraq. Midway through the war, many countries were calling for a ceasefire, but Khomeini didn’t listen. He was confident that his forces could go on fighting and topple Saddam. In order to finance this ambition, Tehran attacked oil [9] tankers in the Persian Gulf, with the hope of pushing oil prices up. This didn’t work. By 1988, the falling oil price finally forced Ayatollah Khomeini to take the painful decision of accepting a ceasefire with Saddam Hussein, something which he likened to “drinking a chalice of poison.”

The same happened in 1997. The Asian crisis of that year, which led to [10] a crash in oil prices to less than $10 per barrel, was one of the major motivators behind Iran’s rapprochement with the West, headed by the reformist administration of Ayatollah Khatami. Low oil prices were again a factor behind Iran’s Western-friendly policy of temporarily suspending uranium enrichment in 2005. In fact one of the reasons Iran felt confident enough to stop the suspension was that oil prices started increasing sharply in August that year.

What this all could mean is that if oil prices fall to $70 per barrel or below, Ahmadinejad may find it difficult to maintain the same level of belligerence against the West. Things could get much worse for him if Obama is elected. His [11] pledge to invest $150 billion in renewable energy could very well burst more bubbles around oil prices, thus pulling them to more unbearable lows for right-wingers in Iran — so low that the words “suspension of uranium enrichment” may turn from blasphemy into a realistic option.

Article printed from Pajamas Media: http://pajamasmedia.com

URL to article: http://pajamasmedia.com/blog/irans-oil-woes-threaten-the-mullahs/

URLs in this post:
[1] $70: http://www.businessweek.com/bwdaily/dnflash/content/sep2008/db2008092_750848.htm?chan=top+news_top+n

[2] interview: http://www.businessweek.com/bwdaily/dnflash/content/sep2008/db2008092_750848.htm?chan=top+news_top+n

[3] Chinese: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/09/07/AR2008090702262.html?nav=rss_world
[4] said: http://in.reuters.com/article/businessNews/idINIndia-35347420080906
[5] cut: http://www.businessweek.com/ap/financialnews/D932D5F80.htm?campaign_id=alerts
[6] income: http://afp.google.com/article/ALeqM5jDWcfUDJFD6dkArtBf7VVXXq6zyA
[7] 27%: http://www.arabianbusiness.com/530184-irans-inflation-tops-27
[8] petrol: http://english.aljazeera.net/news/middleeast/2007/06/2008525144416665475.html
[9] tankers: http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/wars_tanker.html
[10] a crash: http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Global_Economy/GE26Dj02.html
[11] pledge: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2007/10/09/MN8RSM86B.DTL
I have a solution for the president of Iran....and it is NOT politically correct.
They should accept what is coming to them.... it's not like they'll die.... they'll survive.
Miss JDro said:
They should accept what is coming to them.... it's not like they'll die.... they'll survive.


What is that supposed to mean??
Overwatch Downunder said:

What is that supposed to mean??

That really is a "Million Dollar Question".  We do have a Topic in Radio Chatter that her comment should be quoted in.
Bush nixed Israeli strike against Iran: report
Peter O'Neil, Europe Correspondent, Canwest News Service 
Published: Friday, September 26, 2008
Article Link

PARIS -- U.S. President George Bush refused to support a proposed Israeli air strike against Iranian nuclear facilities earlier this year partly due to fear of failure - and possible retaliation, the British newspaper The Guardian reported Friday.

One of the concerns cited in the report, based on unidentified high-level sources, was the possibility that Iran would urge retaliation by Canada-based members of the Lebanon-based Hezbollah terrorist organization.

"It's over 10 years since Hezbollah's last terror strike outside Israel, when it hit an Argentine-Israel association building in Buenos Aires [killing 85 people]," said one official quoted in the British newspaper.

"There is a large Lebanese diaspora in Canada which must include some Hezbollah supporters. They could slip into the United States and take action."

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert raised the issue with Mr. Bush in a one-to-one meeting May 14, according to The Guardian.

Mr. Bush said he would not support such a strike because of fears of retaliation, possibly on American targets in Iraq and Afghanistan, and concerns that the Israelis would fail to disable Iran's nuclear facilities anyway, it said.

The newspaper noted that even if Israel had wanted to go ahead without Washington's agreement, its planes would be unable to reach Iran without passing through U.S.-controlled airspace above Iraq.
More on link

The view that the current conflicts in Iran, Iraq and Afghanistan are part of an internal power struggle inside Dar al Islam:


A long war...

...to which, in the end, the West should be peripheral and which really is not a war at all. Ultimately the fight against Sunni Islamism/Shia extremism will be decided in Arab countries and Iran, and it will not be a military solution. Nonetheless, one cannot afford to let Deobandist/Salafist/Wahhabist types re-install themselves in strength in Afghanistan (or Iraq)--nor expand control in northwest Pakistan, nor take over that country (nuclear yikes!). Not that the West has that much influence over what may happen on the ground in Pakistan. Hard to see what to do.

As for extremists in the West, good intelligence/police work is the answer. Since 9/11, Madrid, and London much progress does seem to have been made. All of which is to precede a post by Michael Totten:

    The War Won’t End in Afghanistan

I started: "...to which, in the end, the West is peripheral..." That is unless our countries, over time and for whatever reasons, lose the will to do what is needed, when necessary, both abroad and internally. It may equally, on the other hand, be worth considering that expansionist and all-encompassing ideologies (comfortable also with violence) seem to succeed fairly rapidly or not at all. For example: Islam, Protestantism, Bolshevism (then there was the twelve-year wonder). So far, modern Islamism has in fact had almost no success in gaining territory, Taliban Afghanistan briefly aside.

In any event, the main decisions--at least in the near term--will be made by Muslims themselves. Think about it.

We can intervene and bring about a favorable outcome by applying leverage. Kirkhill has suggested in the past that we create free trade enclaves around the edges of Dar al Islam, where we can apply economic and cultural influence. A much broader means (although harder to implement) would be to promote human rights for women in Dar al Islam (as opposed to "women's rights"); get 1/2 the population on board for our side and it is a done deal. Military power should never be discounted, and selective applications of force can keep the Deobandist/Salafist/Wahhabist axis off balance and prevent them from entrenching or expanding while our other levers are at work.
The tools exist already, My now sadly deceased sister inlaw was heavily involved in "Sisters in Islam" Dedicated to changing the way Islamic societies treat woman and using woman as a conduit for information and change.

Thoughts, anyone? Not really that surprising.


US raid in Syria spooks Iran
By Kaveh L Afrasiabi

Tehran feels increasingly threatened by the United States-Iraq security agreement that will allow 50 US military bases throughout Iraq, including several in areas close to the Iran-Iraq border.

"The Status of Forces agreement permits the construction of large US forward bases near not only Iran but also Syria and as a result is a cause of serious worry by both Tehran and Damascus," said a prominent Tehran University political science professor.

In light of the incursion on Sunday by US forces inside Syrian territory, ostensibly to pursue al-Qaeda terrorists, there is suddenly concern on the part of many analysts in Tehran that the security agreement between Baghdad and Washington is not simply an internal matter for Iraqis to decide, but rather a regional issue that calls for direct input by Iraq's neighbors.

American military helicopters struck in Syrian territory bordering Iraq, killing eight people. The raid is said to have targeted a network of al-Qaeda-linked fighters using Syria to reach Iraq. The raid comes as Washington and Baghdad are negotiating a bilateral agreement that will set the terms for how US and coalition troops continue to occupy and fight in Iraq. The current United Nations mandate for the multinational forces expires on December 31.

"Iraq's neighbors have been asked by the international community to participate in Iraq's reconstruction and therefore by definition they should also be involved in security matters as well," another analyst at a Tehran think-tank told the author.

This is not altogether an unreasonable request. Iran and the US have participated in three rounds of dialogue on Iraq's security, and that, according to Tehran analysts, is as good a reminder as any that Washington's decision to ignore Iran's viewpoints on the security agreement is a bad error.

Simultaneously, there is a feeling that not all is lost and that the architects of this agreement have indeed taken into consideration some of Iran's vocal objections, such as the initial agreement's provisions for extraterritoriality whereby US personnel in Iraq would be immune from the Iraqi laws. That aspect has been modified, and the agreement also sets a time table for the withdrawal of US forces by no later than December 31, 2011, again something favored by Iran.

And another interesting tidbit: perhaps he got the same cold that Kim Jong Il had? ;D

Iranian president has fallen ill - report
10/26/2008 | 04:11 PM 

Email this | Email the Editor | Print | Digg this | Add to del.icio.us TEHRAN, Iran – Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has fallen ill due to his heavy workload, a close associate told the Iranian state news agency late Saturday.

Parliament member Mohammad Ismail Kowsari, a close ally of the president, told IRNA that Ahmadinejad is feeling under the weather because of the strain of his position.

"The president will eventually heal and continue his job," said Kowsari, who last September accompanied the president on his trip to the U.N. General Assembly. "Every human being can face exhaustion under such a workload."

The Iranian president reportedly works a 20 hour day and has not appeared in public since Tuesday. - AP
Perhaps he's not feeling well because he has understood the implications of his actions and words.

From the Associated Press:

Nation is testing ways of recovering uranium in bid to expand nuke program

VIENNA, Austria - Iran has recently tested ways of recovering highly enriched uranium from waste reactor fuel in a covert bid to expand its nuclear program, according to an intelligence assessment made available to The Associated Press.

The intelligence, provided by a member of the 145-nation International Atomic Energy Agency, also says a report will soon be submitted to the Iranian leadership for a decision on whether to go ahead with the project.

The alleged tests loosely replicate Saddam Hussein's attempts to build the bomb nearly two decades ago. But experts question the conclusion by those providing the intelligence that Tehran, too, is trying to reprocess the fuel to make a nuclear weapon.
They note that the spent fuel at issue as the source of the enriched uranium is not enough to yield the approximately 30 kilograms of weapons-grade material needed for a bomb.

Alleged experiment seems plausible
Still, they say that the alleged experiment appears plausible — if not as a fast track to weapons capability then as a step that could move it further along that path.

With Iran's nuclear program already under international scrutiny, any new efforts by Tehran to increase its nuclear expertise and its store of enriched uranium would set off alarm bells — particularly if that stock was highly enriched. The higher the enrichment the easier it is to reach the 90 percent level used in the fissile core of nuclear warheads.

The three-page intelligence report, drawn from Iranian sources within the country, says the source material would be highly enriched — some at above 90 percent, the rest at 20 percent.
Someone will act; the current situation is unstable as it is. Perceived American weakness affects friends as well as real and potential enemies:


The Dark Lord weighs in
November 5, 2008 3:29 pm Dalwhinnie American Politics, Islam and the West
The Dark Lord is a friend to Barrelstengthians, and I have taken the liberty of posting some of his thoughts here.

Greetings Arran Gold & All:

I made a comment some weeks ago, that nobody picked up on, that I think that Israel has from now to the Inauguration of the Hussein (BHO) regime on Jan 20th, next year, to deal with the Iran question. After that, support from America will dwindle and soften.  Israelis are playing for keeps and cannot afford to wait and see if Iran “really” wants to wipe them off the map.  They live in the real world, the ugly world, of Islamic tyrants and nutbars.  As the only free country in the Middle East, surrounded as they are by an ocean of poverty, ignorance and repression, one wonders how long they can wait.  Or should wait?  Since I made that comment, events in Israel itself have made this option more difficult with the collapse of the governing coalition.  Elections will be held, but not until well into the New Year.  These events make their postion even less secure.

I am sure that they are not fooled by any offers of support from Europe–after all, look what Europe did to them the last time they were in trouble.  Just a thought.

On another topic, raised by Dalwhinnie, “does the US need a British-style Conservative Party?”–one would think, looking at the parlous state of the British Conservatives, that that would be the last thing they need.  The Republican Party has taken a hit, but not as big a hit as had been touted by the Democrat media.  Frum’s article in the Post today was not bad.  But now the rebuilding work begins.

The Republicans have all sorts in their ranks, from the Nelson Rockefeller types to the Sarah Palin types.  (And yes, I do like her–lots.)  These must be united again. (I particularly admired Sarah’s ability to take, and to counter, the spite and vitriol from the Leftist media.  Now that the media’s boy is heading to the White House, perhaps there will be no need for press conferences, just a monthly grovel before the idol….)

Other Republicans that need to be heeded are the Ron Paul types.  A re-examination of how government must be built from the Constitution itself should be one of the coming tasks for the Republican Party.  I am reminded of the 1964 election when Barry Goldwater ran: “In your heart, you know he’s right” was the campaign slogan.  And he was.  Four years later, the LBJ administration and the “Great Society” was a shambles; America was losing the war in Vietnam; and LBJ was so unpopular he would not even run for re-election.

Anyway, the BHO win is not nearly as big as appears at first sight.  In fact, at first sight it still doesn’t seem that big.  It has all the assets required for media titillation of the irrelevant.  It will keep the talk shows endlessly jabbering for weeks.  However, when geopolitics asserts itself, we’ll see how the cookie crumbles.

As far as the Great White North is concerned, I can’t wait until Hussein “re-opens” NAFTA.  Imagine the squeals from the unions and the NDP and, of course, the Liberals!  “Er, Hi Canada, we just thought we’d get rid of that ole auto pact thing and a coupla other things….”  Time then for some schadenfreude fellahs.

I don’t want to wander too far off track right now, so I’ll complete this little missive with the thought that “Change” is probably the most vapid campaign slogan of all time.  Perhaps the Democrats could be reminded of the words of a great British Prime Minister: “Oh Christ, what do we do now?”

Dark Lord
If Israel does not strike Iran ,then Iran is free and clear to produce nuclear weapons - if they are able. There is no way Bush will strike Iran's nuclear facilities without Obama agreeing in advance so I think that ship has sailed. The world will have to deal with a nuclear Iran.
Here is an interesting article, reproduced under the Fair Dealing provisions (§29) of the Copyright Act from today’s Globe and Mail, that deals with two themes we have explored in this thread: the role of culture and the presence of a unassimilated communities following cultural norms that are unacceptable in the society most of us are still trying to build:

To be specific is not racist


From Thursday's Globe and Mail
November 12, 2008 at 11:16 PM EST

When Mary Rogan accepted a magazine assignment from Toronto Life, she had no idea it would stir up such a hornet's nest. "The Brief Life of Aqsa Parvez," this month's cover story, is a sensitive portrait of a teenaged girl caught between the wishes of her devout family and the lure of a secular Western culture. The 16-year-old was strangled after her father allegedly threatened to kill her for ignoring his wishes. Her father and brother have been charged with her murder.

"The untold story of Toronto's first honour killing," said the cover line. And then the protests began. The magazine has been fielding a barrage of e-mail denouncing the piece as racist and Islamophobic. "The magazine created a culture of fear in perpetuating negative stereotypes," said one protester interviewed on CBC Radio.

Curiously, the protest isn't being driven by Muslim groups. Instead, it's coming from feminists who insist there is no connection between misogyny and culture. One of those speaking out against the article is Paulette Senior, CEO of YWCA Canada, which has become highly politicized in recent years. She and others argue that misogyny and sexism are universal. "Violence against women is happening in all communities," insists one.

Well, yes. But maybe in some more than others.

Ms. Rogan is dismayed that feminists have chosen to align themselves with conservative Islam to minimize the problems in some of Canada's immigrant communities. She does not regret using the phrase "honour killing" (although, please note, nothing has been proven in court). "If three white guys grab a black man and put a rope around his neck and hang him from a tree, we know what that is," she says. "We have words like 'lynching.' It's powerful. It's evocative. It's specific. To be specific is not racist."

Ms. Parvez's family lived in Mississauga, which is Canada's sixth-largest city and home to a large enclave of immigrants from Pakistan. To understand the girl's life, Ms. Rogan spent many hours getting to know her two best friends, neither of whom is Muslim. They described a girl who wanted to express herself, have a boyfriend, go to the movies, show her hair. She told them how frightened she was of her father and brother, and how desperate she was to get away from home.

The day after Ms. Parvez's death, the local imam held a press conference where he denounced honour killings. Later, in an interview, he explained to Ms. Rogan that the command for women to cover their heads comes from God.

The conflict between old-world fathers and new-world daughters (and sons) is as old as immigration itself. It's not confined to any ethnic or religious group. But honour killing - when a family member, or even the entire family, believes the murder of a girl by her relatives is justified - is a phenomenon in Muslim countries.

Plenty of feminists are in denial about cultural misogyny. But plenty of people with immigrant backgrounds think we need to do a lot more talking about it. In a letter to Toronto Life, Sarah Jafri wrote: "Unfortunately, the Muslim Indo-Pak community is primarily made up of immigrants who refuse to integrate in Canadian society and adopt a liberal and open outlook in life. They justify acts of violence against women ... as their 'given male right' through the use of religion."

Shortly after Ms. Parvez's death, the Pakistan Daily Times ran an opinion piece by Farrukh Saleem. "Honour killing is our export to Canada," he wrote, as well as to Britain, Germany and many other countries. "Denial is not an option," he warned. "Who will protect women from the laws of men?"

"I really don't believe in cultural relativism," Ms. Rogan says. "I believe there are things that are right in any culture and wrong in any culture. What happened to Aqsa Parvez was wrong. My hope is that people will learn something, and that girl will be remembered."

The problem is NOT honour killing – as abhorrent, indeed barbaric as they may be – they, the honour killings, are just one symptom of the real problem which is a ”Clash of Cultures Civilizations that we must NOT lose.

The problem is NOT Islam – even though the mainstream sects within that community are in need to both reformation and enlightenment – it is with the Arabic/Middle Eastern and Persian/Central and West Asian cultures that dominate Islam in North America.

The medieval Arab/Persian cultures are wholly incompatible with the secular, democratic and, above all liberal society we have built in North America over the past 350 years. We can welcome, even embrace the art, costumes and folk dancing and we need to tolerate the religions but we must reform replace the culture that is so wholly, fundamentally and extremely illiberal – we need to assimilate immigrants by:

• Denying, in law and by example, the validity of such customs as honour killings and genital mutilation; and

• Offering ‘better’ cultural values – especially in our school systems.

For ourselves, the established Canadians of all races, colours and creeds, that means rediscovering, re-evaluating and burnishing our own roots and our secular, democratic and above all liberal values. One of our liberal values is that we tolerate others and their beliefs, even beliefs we find abhorrent. We must not stop tolerating beliefs, but we must put an abrupt and exemplary stop to many of the actions that flow from those beliefs.

This is not about race, it is not about religion, neither of those things matter in the broad flow of liberalism; it is all about culture and the rule of law, the very bedrock of liberal democracy. If we cannot win the culture war then we will, soon, all learn to like the cultural norms and standards that worked so well 1,200 years ago in the Arabian desert.

E.R. Campbell said:
The medieval Arab/Persian cultures are wholly incompatible with the secular, democratic and, above all liberal society we have built in North America over the past 350 years. We can welcome, even embrace the art, costumes and folk dancing and we need to tolerate the religions but we must reform replace the culture that is so wholly, fundamentally and extremely illiberal

Although they border modern-day Iran, would the Pakistanis be considered Persian in culture, or a seperate group? (and if so, what would be the crucial aspects that differentiate them from India?)
chanman said:
Although they border modern-day Iran, would the Pakistanis be considered Persian in culture, or a seperate group? (and if so, what would be the crucial aspects that differentiate them from India?)

That's a good question, chanman, and, early next month, I'll ask a bona fide expert. I'm pretty sure they are different - which t is why I used the awkward “Persian/Central and West Asian” construct in the first instant.