War threats against Iran as U.N. meets

This year’s United Nations General Assembly session opened during an escalation of tensions between the United States and the Islamic Republic of Iran. But concerns surrounding the use of predator drone warfare and the ongoing occupation of Afghanistan were the themes of a demonstration outside the U.N. on Sept. 25, the opening day.

The imperialist countries and the Soviet Union set up the U.N. after World War II ended, ostensibly to resolve conflicts and prevent wars as well as foster humanitarian work and economic development. More than ever, the global body is now dominated by the imperialist states of North America, Western Europe and Japan.

These states have used the U.N., especially the Security Council, to justify wars of aggression and other measures against People’s Korea, Iraq, Afghanistan and other countries, actions which caused the deaths, injuries and displacement of millions.

Just last year, the Security Council approved the imposition of a “no-fly zone” (Resolution 1973) that provided a pseudolegal basis for the massive bombing of Libya, the overthrow of its government and the brutal assassination of its leader, Col. Moammar Gadhafi, and members of his family.

Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe in his speech before the General Assembly on Sept. 26 condemned the war of regime change against Libya during 2011 and stated that the situation inside the country had worsened since the toppling and killing of Gadhafi last year. Mugabe noted with irony, “As we join the United States in condemning that death [Ambassador Christopher Stevens], shall the United States also join us in condemning the barbaric death of Gaddafi. It was a loss, great loss to Africa.” (Zimbabwe Sunday Mail, Sept. 30)

Iranian president’s meeting in New York City

The U.N. Mission of the Islamic Republic of Iran hosted over 100 religious leaders, scholars, journalists and social justice activists Sept. 25 for a dialog with President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Some of the most notable guests included former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark, a co-founder of the International Action Center; Minister Louis Farrakhan of the Nation of Islam; Imari Baraka, renowned poet and longtime activist; Glen Ford, editor of the Black Agenda Report; Phil Wilayto, organizer for the Virginia Defenders; Nellie Bailey of the Harlem Tenants Council; Sara Flounders, co-director of the International Action Center; Leah Bolger, leader of Veterans for Peace; Joe Iosbaker, trade unionist and solidarity activist; Sarah Martin, a leader of Women Against Military Madness; Joe Lombardo, administrative committee member of the United National Anti-War Coalition; retired Col. Ann Wright, author of “Voices of Conscience”; and Ray McGovern, former Central Intelligence Agency analyst, among others.

A panel discussion featuring several guests, including Jonathan Lee of the Hartford Seminary and attorney Stanley Cohen, continued for more than an hour. The corporate media in New York had worked to create a hostile environment for the Iranian delegation to the General Assembly. But at this get-together, a warm reception greeted President Ahmadinejad, who spoke for nearly 50 minutes at the conclusion of the other presentations.

There were, however, reports of an assault against members of the Iranian delegation to the U.N. outside the Warwick Hotel by members of a previously — but no longer — listed “terrorist” group, the Mujahedin-e Khalq Organization. The group has engaged in an armed campaign against the government in Tehran, Iran’s capital. New York City police did not make any arrests in the alleged incident.

Information distributed to all guests at the Warwick Hotel dinner with President Ahmadinejad stated, “The Islamic Republic of Iran is a State party to all major international legally binding instruments prohibiting weapons of mass destruction.”

Over the last several years, numerous Iranian nuclear scientists have been assassinated. The state of Israel and the U.S. have threatened in the past to bomb Iran’s nuclear facilities.

Press TV correspondent assassinated

On Sept. 26, the Press TV news correspondent for Syria was assassinated by sniper fire while covering two truck bombings in the capital of Damascus. Maya Naser, 33, was gunned down while making a live report to the international satellite television network that is viewed by millions every day.

Press TV, which originates from Tehran, has exposed the character of the U.S. imperialist backed and financed war against Syria, where tens of thousands have died since February 2011. Over 30 journalists have been killed in Syria since last year, most of whom are Syrian nationals.

This satellite news channel represents one of the few major media outlets that provide information about the Syrian war outside the confines of what is generally advanced through the Western-allied corporate and governmental press ­agencies.

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