Fox News, November 14, 2006
Shepard Smith: Well the United States now reports it’s one of the top state sponsors of terror and is determined to become a nuclear power. Today, word from Iran’s president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, that its atomic program is almost there, in his words, translated. Now here in Studio B is Alireza Jafarzadeh. He is Fox News’ Foreign Affairs Analyst and author of a brand new book: The Iran Threat: President Ahmadinejad and the Coming Nuclear Crisis. Is it here Alireza?
Alireza Jafarzadeh: Well the crisis is here, already. I think ever since Ahmadinejad took office as the new president. He’s intent on getting the Iranian regime its first nuclear bomb and also turns Iraq into an Islamic republic and I think he’s on schedule.
Shepard Smith: For both things?
Alireza Jafarzadeh: For both things.
Shepard Smith: Alright, I want to talk about the two of them and popular resistance inside the country. But first, is this a foregone conclusion? Is there a fait accompli here? Are they stoppable?
Alireza Jafarzadeh: I think they are stoppable.
Shepard Smith: How?
Alireza Jafarzadeh: But not the way…
Shepard Smith: Well then how? Just by sitting down and talking?
Alireza Jafarzadeh: Absolutely not.
Shepard Smith: Direct contact?
Alireza Jafarzadeh: It doesn’t work that way. Because the Ayatollahs have already determined…
Shepard Smith: They run the place anyway don’t they?
Alireza Jafarzadeh: They run the place anyway, they want to get the bomb at any cost. They feel that the international community is not decisive enough. Therefore they can get away with violating their own commitments with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
Shepard Smith: You know what maybe we should do quickly? Let’s back up and explain what an Ayatollah is and does.
Alireza Jafarzadeh: Well the Ayatollah has an agenda in Iran to suppress its own population. But also, it has a global agenda to establish a global Islamic republic elsewhere.
Shepard Smith: All religious?
Alireza Jafarzadeh: All religious.
Shepard Smith: Yet with oil in their palms.
Alireza Jafarzadeh: They have all the resources in their hands. They would dominate the way of thinking of the population. They are telling the Iranian population how to think, how to dress, who to talk to…
Shepard Smith: Is it like a religious mafia sort of controlling the people?
Alireza Jafarzadeh: They are using religion to run their own mafia network. It really, in reality, has no basis in the religion. Islam is not a religion of violence and intolerance.
Shepard Smith: And Ahmadinejad is what in relation to them? As president he is what?
Alireza Jafarzadeh: He runs their operation.
Shepard Smith: He runs the operation for the Ayatollahs.
Alireza Jafarzadeh: For the Ayatollahs. He is their president: he carries out their operations, their messages, and he has been groomed by the Ayatollahs. I went into his own history in my book extensively how he was groomed by the Ayatollahs, especially by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards for many years before he became president. And he believes in the establishment of a global Islamic rule: that was his campaign message during the presidential elections.
Shepard Smith: Of course, and yet, when we look back just a few short years, just before this crisis with Iraq, all you heard from inside sources in Iran was this popular movement against an Islamic regime and for power to the people. And we heard so much about how they might be able to rise up with a little help. Where are we now?
Alireza Jafarzadeh: Well the problem is that the Iranian regime badly suppressed the Iranian population. The Iranian population got not support from the international community.
Shepard Smith: And I wonder why that is. We were busy with something else kind of, maybe a war in Iraq.
Alireza Jafarzadeh: Absolutely, in fact when the nuclear sites were revealed by the Iranian opposition in August of 2002, instead of focusing on the threat from Tehran, the whole world was preoccupied with the coming crisis in Iraq. So the Ayatollahs got away with that.
Shepard Smith: Can that uprising of, by, and for the people, can it be supported now to a degree to which it might be helpful within the country and the region?
Alireza Jafarzadeh: I think it has to.
Shepard Smith: How?
Alireza Jafarzadeh: Because first of all there were some four thousand anti-government demonstrations in the past one year.
Shepard Smith: Never hear about them.
Alireza Jafarzadeh: Major upheavals in the southern province Khuzestan, northwest of Iran Azerbaijan, the capital Teheran. The younger generation of Iran are vehemently opposed to the Iranian regime. There is an organized opposition both inside Iran that is responsible for some of these revelations, but also outside of Iran.
Shepard Smith: Much like people may understand Cuba and the resistance here in south Florida.
Alireza Jafarzadeh: I think it’s much further than that.
Shepard Smith: But that kind of thing.
Alireza Jafarzadeh: Absolutely, but much more deep rooted. Tens of thousands of members and supporters of this movement were executed by the Iranian regime. Yet the State Department and the International communities were silent about it…
Shepard Smith: Why?
Alireza Jafarzadeh: Because they thought that if they don’t rock the boat with the Ayatollahs…
Shepard Smith: It will just fix itself?
Alireza Jafarzadeh: It will fix itself or they can find a way of negotiating with the Ayatollahs, that they would eventually be able to change the behavior of the Iranian regime. They tried it for eight years under Khatami, the previous president. And they still haven’t given up with this new president, Ahmadinejad. And I think with the prospect of a nuclear Iran, with what Iran is doing in Iraq, we cannot afford not pursuing a whole new policy that will be focused on empowering the Iranian opposition, removing all restrictions from them, and letting them settle their case with the Ayatollahs.
Shepard Smith: A fascinating take on it all, the book, for those of you interested in the Iran crisis man alive if you’re a student of politics or international politics and all the threats that come, this is one to pick up.
Alireza Jafarzadeh: Comes in January, 2007.
Shepard Smith: It’s called The Iran Threat: President Ahmadinejad and the Coming Nuclear Crisis. The crisis is upon us. The book is here in January. Alireza, good to see you.
Alireza Jafarzadeh: Thank you, great pleasure to be on your show. Shepard.