Wednesday, June 17, 2009

My Heritage

June 16, 2009 | By Nathaniel Ward

Iran's sham election
Last Friday's Iranian presidential election yielded a result that should surprise few who understand the regime's true nature: hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was declared the winner, by a landslide.

Many Iranians had supported Mir Hossain Mousavi, whose foreign policy largely resembled Ahmadinejad's, albeit with less confrontational rhetoric. The apparent competition between incumbent Ahmadinejad and three other candidates led many foreign observers to believe that Iran's election would actually reflect the will of the voters.

Heritage Foundation Middle East expert Jim Phillips reminds us, however, that "Iran's government is not a true democracy but a theocratic dictatorship that cloaks the rule of the ayatollahs with a façade of representative government."

Heritage experts have called on President Obama to approach this abrogation of democracy by firmly "denouncing the elections and indicating U.S. support for the demonstrators."

"The president should be questioning the legitimacy of the elections," Heritage Vice President Kim Holmes tells the Washington Independent. "He doesn't need to go into any great detail. He needs to show that, in the long run, the United States is on the side of the Iranian people."

Ahmadindejad's three rivals -- each of them like-minded Islamist extremists, hand-picked by senior clerics of the ayatollah's Guardian Council -- expressed concern that the vote would be rigged by the incumbent's supporters. "They had no faith in the fairness of the vote-counting process. And they have good reason for their concern, based on their long experience with Iranian elections, which are neither free nor fair," Phillips argues on

Mousavi and his supporters are challenging the election's outcome on the grounds that the presidency was stolen from him by a state-controlled media that, as Phillips writes in a Heritage analysis, "spoon-fed Iranians a steady diet of slanted information, misinformation and disinformation that favored Ahmadinejad."

Thousands have taken to the street in protests that have turned increasingly violent. This has led the ruling Guardian Council to call for a recount of some of the ballots from the disputed presidential elections.

Last Friday's election and the subsequent turmoil only confirms that "Iran belongs to the ayatollahs, specifically the Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who casts the ultimate vote on all important matters," Phillips explains.

-- Amanda Reinecker

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Help us speak out against this harmful ruling. Last year, 14,461 people submitted a comment through The Heritage Foundation's website asking the EPA not to move forward with carbon dioxide regulations. We need your help again.

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> Other Heritage work of note
Sen. Edward Kennedy's (D-MA) recent health care proposal "is a setback for bipartisan health care reform," write Heritage health care policy experts Robert Moffit and Stuart Butler. If passed, Kennedy's Affordable Health Choices Act would ignore President Obama's campaign promise to change nothing for those satisfied with their plans, to provide coverage equal to or better than that of members of Congress for those unsatisfied and to reduce family coverage costs by $2,500. While health care reforms are necessary, Moffit and Butler encourage Congress to "redraft the legislation in a way that commands broad bipartisan support" and achieves meaningful reform.
Next Tuesday, June 23, Karl Rove will explain how conservatives can recover from political setbacks at an event sponsored by the Southern California Committee for Heritage -- and you can watch the event live on at 11:15 p.m. Eastern.
President Obama's 2010 budget proposal doesn't simply shift defense funding, it cuts essential programs, write Heritage experts Jim Talent and Mackenzie Eaglen. Their analysis reveals how these cuts will hurt America's capabilities in strategic defense, control of the seas, air superiority, space control, counterterrorism, counterinsurgency and more. Crucially, these dangerous proposed changes all precede any formal strategic review of defense and foreign policy.
Heritage Senior Legal Fellow Charles Stimson explores the legal questions surrounding the trial of Guantanamo Bay detainee Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani, an accomplice in the1998 bombings of US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania and a self-proclaimed partner of Osama bin Laden. Contrary to what many liberals claim, Ghailani's case does not create strong precedent for dealing with the remaining detainees, he argues. "This case is nothing new," declares Stimson.
"The conversion of General Motors to Government Motors should be a grave concern to all Americans," writes Heritage expert Brian Darling. Fortunately, some legislators, such as Sen. Mike Johanns (R-NE), are working to curb the President's "all-out assault" against capitalism. They're calling for Congressional approval before any government takeover of a private enterprise. Darling also highlights other Congressional proposals to defend free enterprise and limited government.
In its desperation for additional sources of revenue, the Obama administration's IRS has proposed taxing employer-provided mobile devices. They argue that since Blackberries and the like can be used for personal business, they amount to a taxable benefit. Congress should halt this tax, which could disrupt private business' efficiency as employees refuse to accept the devices.
> In other news
British politicians are lashing out at the Obama administration for sending four Chinese Uighurs from Guantanamo Bay to the British overseas territory of Bermuda.
President Obama pitched his health care plan to a skeptical audience at the American Medical Association's annual meeting yesterday. The organization has come out against the big-government proposal.
According to a Gallup survey, 40 percent of all Americans questioned identify themselves as conservative, making it the most popular political philosophy. 35 percent of those surveyed identify as moderate, while only 21 percent claim to be liberal.
Facing increased pressure from Washington, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu conditionally endorsed an independent Palestinian state. Netanyahu's address on Sunday outlined Israel's conditions: that Palestinians first vow to not establish a military and that they accept Israel as a Jewish state.
According to news reports, ABC News anchor Charlie Gibson and President Obama will join forces on June 24 and broadcast a special report on the proposed big-government health care reforms live from the White House.
An alarmist new White House report blames recent weather on "climate change" and predicts extreme weather in the future.
> Coming up at Heritage
To attend these or any other events at Heritage please RSVP at Heritage's website. Or you can view these events live online. All times are Eastern.

On Wednesday, June 17 at 10:30 a.m., a panel of experts discusses how America can respond to current and future threats to national security.
On Wednesday, June 24 at noon, author Brad O'Leary discusses his new book on government threats to freedom of speech.
Nathaniel Ward is the Editor of—a website for members and supporters of The Heritage Foundation. Amanda Reinecker contributed to this report.

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Blogger Myron & Sally Holter said...

My Journey is also with my

So many websites, so little time.

I am coming out of the closet.

I'm a card carrying member of the vast right wing conspiracy.

June 17, 2009 at 5:18 AM  

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