Omid Memarian

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Grooming the Next Ahmad Chalabi....

I don't really get why Los Angeles Times is looking for an Iranian Ahmad Chalabi? Richard Perle desperation to get access to the Iranian opposition has led him to the left over of the Iranian society key forces. Who is behind these kind of stories which can find a way in prestigious papers? As long as the Islamic Republic is facing such injudicious opponents, they will feel safe and secure... What a fortune that people such Richard Perle have nothing to do with the US foreign policy anymore, at least at the end of the Bush Administration....

Friday, November 23, 2007

A Profile and Joy of Writing....

Among all the forms we choose to write, I enjoy profiling the most. This format let the author to explore individual's life, passions, crucial moments, feeling and intellectuals findings. A few weeks ago I profiled a galeryowener in Oakland, Svea Lin Vezzone. The original piece is almost 3000 words. However after lots of edits that was done by me and the one of the editors in Novometro, which is becoming one of the leading local websites in Bay Area, is has squeezed to something less than 2000 words. But, still, it says a lot about the Swarm Gallery, Svea and art in this region. I recieved an email from Svea a few weeks after the interview was published. She told me that the piece fits to her spirit and the gallery, accroding the to the people who have read it.

Here is the link to the interview.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Israel Lobby and the AIPAC Factor in the US Foreign Policy

Photo description: After a talk by John J. Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt in UC Berkeley a while ago, I'm asking John about about his thoughts on the possible Israel's threats toward Iran. "How much an Israeli military strike is likely in the upcoming months?" I asked him. He explained that the possibility is still high. The talk at UC Berkeley was packed by many people who were enthusiastically listening to one of the most controversial book ever this year. Pro Palestinian and Pro-Israeli groups reacted passionately to different part of their speech. Harry Kriesler who conducts interviews with scholars, politicians and super stars in the public sphere has interviewed John a while ago and also recently on his fantastic show "Conversation with History".

Monday, November 12, 2007

POLITICS-US: West Coast City Formally Rejects Iran Attack

"OAKLAND, California, Nov 7 (IPS) - The eight-member city council of Oakland, home to nearly half a million people, unanimously passed a symbolic resolution opposing any U.S. attack against Iran Tuesday, in a bid to pressure lawmakers in Congress to reestablish their constitutional authority over U.S foreign policy and war policy and funding.

Before the city council meeting began, about 15 concerned Oakland and East Bay residents spoke out against the U.S. entering into another war. Dozens of others rallied in front of City Hall in support of the resolution. (Read the rest of the story here...)

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Halloween, Fred Thompson and a Cruel Assignment!

There is one thing worse than spending the entire day covering dry political news on Halloween: making a slide show about a Fred Thomson press conference in San Francisco.

"That's cruel," a friend said when she heard that our professor had assigned my colleague Gaëlle Faure and me to make a slide show about a political press conference. It is not because the conference was for a Republican
presidential candidate whose views on gays, lesbians and immigrants will win him no votes in such a liberal city, but because there the event was visually boring.

Halloween itself could have been a fascinating topic for a slide show, especially in San Francisco. Sure, the city's famous spontaneous and unsanctioned event in city's most openly gay neighborhood was taken away by the city after 2002, when five people were stabbed and police subdued a man with a chain saw in a crowd of almost 500,000.

But the Thomson event had no feeling, screaming, excitement, sorrow, grieving, color or the other visual elements that make a slide show watchable.

However, it seems that politicians' talk has never been more visual than it is today, especially when talking about Iraq, same-sex unions and immigration and explaining why water boardingstory of Iraq is particularly visual in whatever way it is told, filled with stark images of human tragedy. is a form or torture or not. The

By Omid Memarian and Gaëlle Faure
Photos: Giuliani courtesy of Joe Crimmings; Romney courtesy of Reverend
Richmond B. DeYoung ||; McCain courtesy of Marc Nozell

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Zogby: Majority Favor Strikes on Iran
Do You Think 52 Percent of Americans Support War Against Iran?

A new Zagby survey shows that 52 percent of Americans support war with Iran. I can not see such an atmosphere in Berkeley, but the United State is not Berkeley. I can imagine what the mainstream media has done with the public opinion during the last years:

"A majority of likely voters - 52 percent - would support a U.S. military strike to prevent Iran from building a nuclear weapon, and 53 percent believe it is likely that the U.S. will be involved in a military strike against Iran before the next presidential election, a new Zogby America telephone poll shows.

The survey results come at a time of increasing U.S. scrutiny of Iran. According to reports from the Associated Press, earlier this month Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice accused Iran of "lying" about the aim of its nuclear program and Vice President Dick Cheney has raised the prospect of "serious consequences" if the U.S. were to discover Iran was attempting to devolop a nuclear weapon. Last week, the Bush administration also announced new sanctions against Iran. (Continued....)

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Iran: prepared for the worst

Here is my article in Open Democracy about the latest changes in Iran's political system. I argue that Iranians have come to this conclusion that the US has decided to confront Iran at any expense. So, they are getting ready for the time this crisis occur. Read my article here:

"The resignation of Ali Larijani, secretary of Iran's national-security council and top nuclear negotiator, on 20 October has provoked been much discussion about what it might reveal of Tehran's complex intra-regime politics. What has been less remarked is that this was the second key personnel change among Iran's governing elite in the past two months. This sequence of events, reflecting the key arguments and calculations of Iran's top leaders, signifies the emergence of a revised politicalstrategy designed to cope with with the heightened threat of United States military action." (Continue ...)