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Posts Tagged ‘ Iran space program ’

  • 3 February 2010
  • Posted By Nayda Lakelieh
  • Diplomacy, Events in Iran, Nuclear file

Iran’s Space Jam

Press TV reports that Iran has launched a rocket capable of putting a satellite into space, this time equipped with living organisms. The worms, two turtles, and  rat were monitored by video transmission aboard Kavoshgar-3, and were studied by scientists upon their return to earth.

“Projects that we inaugurated are mostly on the very edge of modern technology… each one of them call for a national celebration,” Ahmadinejad said on Wednesday, while addressing a gathering of scientists and state officials.

“Those individuals whose contributions have made all this possible deserve praise,” he added.

CNN further reports that the White House believes the launch of  Kavoshgar- 3 or Explorer 3 to be a “provocative act,” raising international concern. Spokesperson Bill Burton said that the US is still verifying that all accounts of the launch are accurate.

Although Ahmadinejad is describing the aerospace launch as a symbol of hope for the region, the morning launch has sprung much international animosity.

“Developing a space launch vehicle that could … put a satellite into orbit could possibly lead to development of a ballistic missile system,” State Department deputy spokesman Robert Wood said at the time. “So that’s a grave concern to us.”

The Pentagon called the plan “clearly a concern of ours.”, while President Obama added “that it’s not too late for Iran to do the right thing.”

  • 3 February 2009
  • Posted By Patrick Disney
  • Events in Iran, Nuclear file, Persian Gulf

Revolutionary Flare

Below is a special guest post from Jill Marie Parillo from Physicians for Social Responsibility.  Jill is the Deputy Director for Security Programs
and Director of US-Iranian Scientific Exchange Initiative at PSR.

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On the 30th anniversary of the revolution yesterday, Iran potentially launched its first satellite “Omid” (Hope) into space.  Iranian officials claimed that the missile, developed in November 2008, was for deterrence purposes.  President Ahmadinejad said yesterday’s rocket was launched in peace and that science will promote “friendship, brotherhood and justice” between Iran and the world.  Iranian Foreign Minister Mottaki said the satellite would be used to collect “environmental data.”

In any case, if proven successful (it is not yet), this rocket launch will prove Iran’s 2,000 kilometer missile capability, last tested with the launch of its Sajjil (long-range surface-to-surface missiles) in November 2008.

From Iran, a missile of 2000 kilometers would reach:

Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, China, Egypt, Georgia, Greece, Hungary, India, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Nepal, Pakistan, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan.

Sign the Petition


7,349 signatures

Tell Google: Stop playing Persian Gulf name games!

May 14, 2012
Larry Page
Chief Executive Officer
Google Inc.
1600 Amphitheatre Parkway
Mountain View, California 94043

Dear Mr. Page:

It has come to our attention that Google has begun omitting the title of the Persian Gulf from its Google Maps application. This is a disconcerting development given the undisputed historic and geographic precedent of the name Persian Gulf, and the more recent history of opening up the name to political, ethnic, and territorial disputes. However unintentionally, in adopting this practice, Google is participating in a dangerous effort to foment tensions and ethnic divisions in the Middle East by politicizing the region’s geographic nomenclature. Members of the Iranian-American community are overwhelmingly opposed to such efforts, particularly at a time when regional tensions already have been pushed to the brink and threaten to spill over into conflict. As the largest grassroots organization in the Iranian-American community, the National Iranian American Council (NIAC) calls on Google to not allow its products to become propaganda tools and to immediately reinstate the historically accurate, apolitical title of “Persian Gulf” in all of its informational products, including Google Maps.

Historically, the name “Persian Gulf” is undisputed. The Greek geographer and astronomer Ptolemy referencing in his writings the “Aquarius Persico.” The Romans referred to the "Mare Persicum." The Arabs historically call the body of water, "Bahr al-Farsia." The legal precedent of this nomenclature is also indisputable, with both the United Nations and the United States Board of Geographic Names confirming the sole legitimacy of the term “Persian Gulf.” Agreement on this matter has also been codified by the signatures of all six bordering Arab countries on United Nations directives declaring this body of water to be the Persian Gulf.

But in the past century, and particularly at times of escalating tensions, there have been efforts to exploit the name of the Persian Gulf as a political tool to foment ethnic division. From colonial interests to Arab interests to Iranian interests, the opening of debate regarding the name of the Persian Gulf has been a recent phenomenon that has been exploited for political gain by all sides. Google should not enable these politicized efforts.

In the 1930s, British adviser to Bahrain Sir Charles Belgrave proposed to rename the Persian Gulf, “Arabian Gulf,” a proposal that was rejected by the British Colonial and Foreign offices. Two decades later, the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company resurrected the term during its dispute with Mohammad Mossadegh, the Iranian Prime Minister whose battle with British oil interests would end in a U.S.-sponsored coup d'état that continues to haunt U.S.-Iran relations. In the 1960s, the title “Arabian Gulf” became central to propaganda efforts during the Pan-Arabism era aimed at exploiting ethnic divisions in the region to unite Arabs against non-Arabs, namely Iranians and Israelis. The term was later employed by Saddam Hussein to justify his aims at territorial expansion. Osama Bin Laden even adopted the phrase in an attempt to rally Arab populations by emphasizing ethnic rivalries in the Middle East.

We have serious concerns that Google is now playing into these efforts of geographic politicization. Unfortunately, this is not the first time Google has stirred controversy on this topic. In 2008, Google Earth began including the term “Arabian Gulf” in addition to Persian Gulf as the name for the body of water. NIAC and others called on you then to stop using this ethnically divisive propaganda term, but to no avail. Instead of following the example of organizations like the National Geographic Society, which in 2004 used term “Arabian Gulf” in its maps but recognized the error and corrected it, Google has apparently decided to allow its informational products to become politicized.

Google should rectify this situation and immediately include the proper name for the Persian Gulf in Google Maps and all of its informational products. The exclusion of the title of the Persian Gulf diminishes your applications as informational tools, and raises questions about the integrity and accuracy of information provided by Google.

We strongly urge you to stay true to Google’s mission – “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful” – without distorting or politicizing that information. We look forward to an explanation from you regarding the recent removal of the Persian Gulf name from Google Maps and call on you to immediately correct this mistake.



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