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In the Name of God بسم الله


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Posts posted by Photi

  1. inshallah, may cooler heads prevail.. this seems so ridiculous. it smells more like the pretext-making of western warmongers or disloyal iranian expats. it is far-fetched to believe the Iranian leadership had anything to do with this. it is difficult to imagine any calculated benefit for the Islamic Republic. the track record of lies and pretexts spread by the imperial powers for starting illegal wars should be quite recent everyone's memory.

    i know who not to believe. the 1% and their media.

  2. Salam alaykum,

    Forgive me for an ignorant question, but when does ramadan really starts? I heard it's 1 August but someone else I know said it's not that's sunni's time table, not ours. I'm a bit confused...

    Thank you,


    wa alaikum salam,

    For Followers of the late Syed Fadlallah, Ramadan starts on Monday August 1st:

    "The Juristic Committee of the Institution of His Eminence, the Religious Authority, Sayyed Muhammad Hussein Fadlullah (ra) announced that the scientific data and precise astronomical calculation it obtained indicate that the astronomical birth (central conjunction) of the crescent of the blessed month of Ramadan is on Saturday, July 30, 2011 at 18:40 p.m. (GMT); that is, at 21:40 a.m. Beirut summer time. Therefore, since the crescent can not be seen anywhere in the world on Saturday night, neither by the naked eye, nor by the aid of magnifiers, then Sunday marks the last day of Shaaban (the thirtieth), and Monday, August 01, 2011 is the first day of the blessed month of Ramadan. It must be noted that the crescent can be easily sighted on Sunday night in the southern part of Africa and in South America, and rather difficultly in central Africa. Therefore, according to the jurisprudential opinion of the late Religious Authority, His Eminence, Sayyed Muhammad Hussein Fadlullah (ra), Monday is the first day of the blessed month of Ramadan 1432 H., even in the eastern regions of the globe, such as Australia, New Zealand, China and others..."

  3. Salam alaikum,

    I thought Zareen or others might have something more to say about this subject. Is Democracy in Indonesia fact or fiction?

    The article below can be found here:


    Winning the Transition

    WASHINGTON, DC – Is the Arab Spring turning into a gloomy autumn? With brutal crackdowns in Syria, a bloody civil war in Libya, and Yemen teetering on the brink of chaos, the number of skeptics is growing. Although Egypt and Tunisia's pro-democracy movements achieved rapid regime change, uncertainties remain in those countries, too. After a brief period of hope, many observers now wonder whether the region is capable of producing viable, and economically vibrant, democracies.

    Revolutions and their aftermaths, of course, are always fluid and fickle times, and the outcome is often perched on a knife's edge. Bridging the vast gap between high expectations and the reality of limited budgets and capabilities is a test in itself. Redressing past injustice and building an economy that offers opportunity to all are major challenges as well, fraught with volatility, uncertainty, and the dangers of political opportunism.

    But transitions are also times of great opportunity. In the 1990's, I was among those Indonesians who demanded and celebrated the departure of our own autocrat, Suharto, and I joined the new government when he left. Many observers predicted that Indonesia, the world's most populous Muslim country, would be unable to sustain democracy and would ultimately decline into chaos. The task ahead of us was daunting. But we proved the skeptics wrong, and learned some fundamental lessons.

    Perhaps most importantly, we learned that there is no one-size-fits-all solution for democratization. Each of the countries of the Middle East and North Africa will face unique challenges, which will have to be addressed on their own terms. Even so, they all must make a real and symbolic break with the past. The new authorities must send strong signals that the old ways are finished.

    Change must be formally manifested, with new laws that are widely publicized. Legislation that empowers citizens with freedom of expression, free and independent elections, and freedom of association is crucial, and it must be made clear to the public that no one is above the law. Anything less will undermine the transition.

    Moreover, corruption is the bane of development everywhere, so new governments should move fast to establish institutions and procedures to fight it. Transparency and accountability are powerful ideas with near-universal support, which means that new leaders should not give up when the fight becomes difficult. Civil-society organizations, local communities, representatives of the poor and vulnerable, and women play a vital role in this regard, and they should be included at every level of decision-making.

    In Indonesia, we signed a hundred laws in less than 18 months, covering everything from media freedom to elections, corruption, decentralization, and anti-trust rules. We ratified new public-finance legislation and ensured the independence of the country's central bank.

    New leaders must also expect and manage setbacks. In post-revolutionary times, expectations are high, and the obstacles to meeting them are enormous. I know from personal experience that we did not always have the luxury of getting the best outcomes. We had to compromise and settle for the best possible results.

    Security threats are among the most serious setbacks in transitions. Nationalistic sentiment is strong, and politicians and interest groups can exploit it. Often, the security forces are holdovers from the old regime, and there is no independent judicial system. Reforms will take time, and the old bureaucracies may not be able to implement them.

    In Indonesia, we used various innovations to work around such dilemmas. For example, we appointed an independent judge to take over the bankruptcy and corruption courts, because career judges were too tainted. Likewise, when we started cash-for-work programs as part of our pro-poor agenda, we asked communities to run these initiatives.

    More broadly, new leaders are well advised to ensure that the economy performs well. It is important to restore economic activity and create a favorable environment for entrepreneurs, particularly small and medium-size businesses, which constitute the main engine of job creation. The recent revolutions, it should be recalled, started with the self-immolation of a Tunisian fruit vendor, who was harassed and insulted by the authorities.

    But economic success without accountability and social inclusion is not sustainable, and new governments often must face tough choices in order to protect the poor and vulnerable. They might have to abolish mis-targeted subsidies to free up resources for more targeted and efficient anti-poverty and job-creation programs.

    In Indonesia, we had to draw a line between the very poor and the near-poor. We could not afford to raise salaries or provide subsidies for everybody. Our help had to be targeted. So, while we helped the neediest, we excluded others who were not poor enough to benefit. This was a tough and unpopular choice.

    Finally, countries in transition need support – not only money, but also technical know-how to implement highly complex reforms. When I became Indonesia's finance minister, I had 64,000 employees. But when we had to modernize our tax system, we could not find the required expertise anywhere in our country.

    Yes, we needed external assistance, but we never surrendered "ownership" of the reform process; we made it work for us. If we Indonesians had not been in charge of our own transition, it could easily have failed. That lesson, too, is one that all countries in transition should bear in mind.

    Sri Mulyani Indrawati is Managing Director of the World Bank Group and a former finance minister of Indonesia.

    Copyright: Project Syndicate, 2011.


  4. More of the article at the link:

    Friday, July 1, 2011

    Galileo's Curse

    by Amir Taheri

    To deny facts of the past is more difficult than making outlandish claims in the present. The western press has as long as I can remember classified the Iranian economy as in a "destructive downhill spiral". Statements of deep recession, stagnation and utter self-implosion have also been written to describe this economy of 70 plus million. Much coverage and reference was devoted in the last year to bleak reports from the IMF and the WTO on Iran's economy. (Un)strangely enough, when two weeks ago a delegation from the IMF visited Iran and after reviewing the books retracted its prior weak assessment of Iran's economy, there was little to no coverage. The IMF did not just adjust its assessment of Iran's 2009-2010 economy, it flat out praised Iran's current path and future potential. Having originally claimed that Iran's economy had near 1% growth in 2009 they readjusted it to 3.5% growth in hindsight. This notwithstanding that oil prices last year were down from the year before. They further went to say that, "The mission commended the authorities for the early success in the implementation of their ambitious subsidy reform program." Inflation was also brought down from 25.4% to 12.4% even though prices had increased at time as high as 700%.

    I myself have now officially lived in Iran for 6 months. I don't see a country that is self-imploding, or in recession or any of the other terms that are used by most of the major papers. I even studied business and economics, so I should be able to see some of the signs of an economy in bad shape. What I do see for my own eyes are people living, spending money more than I have ever seen in my life in the West, and a society that is more capitalistic than many western countries. Although gas is between $1.60-$2.80 a gallon a far cry from just recent memory when it was 40 cents a gallon, the streets are clogged. In my city there is a popular street where the young come to cruise for dates. They do this Iranian style, by driving their gas-guzzlers up and down the street until finding a suitable match, sometimes hours. With gas prices almost 300% higher, surprisingly you see no less traffic on this street. I see average earning families putting their kids in private and expansive schools prior to even reaching high-school or college when costs really add up. I see an incredible number of foreign cars on the streets that cost a pricy 100% extra due to import taxes. And no these are not crony government officials or drug dealers driving these high-end cars. They are mostly business people who run restaurants, shops, and even hair salons. I see with my own eyes, construction everywhere. No section of any city I have visited has been immune to this expansion. Large public works like metros, highways, and bridges compete with privately funded and even bigger and higher hotels, apartments, and shopping malls. In September Shiraz will get the largest mall in the world according to number of shops; 2500! Tabriz is expanding with private money in all directions and is set to start construction on the largest hotel complex with story reach of 66 floors. Mashhad with an influx of over 20 million pilgrims each year (more than Mecca) has more ongoing hotel, mall, and public works projects than I have time to list. The capital Tehran has recently opened the world's largest revolving restaurant in its Milad tower. A meal for one person will set you back $160. The restaurant itself pays a whopping $300,000 monthly rent.

  5. Abu Dujana, can you fear monger a little more?


    IR Leader inspects strategic technologies fair (2011/03/14 - 22:19)

    Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Sayyed Ali Khamenei on Monday morning inspected the exhibition of strategic technologies in Tehran in order to get familiar with the great achievements of Iranian scientists in the fields of science and technology.

    Ayatollah Khamenei visited the memorial of the Iranian martyred scientists, Masoud Ali Mohammadi and Majid Shahriari and paid tribute to them.

    The Zionist regime's agents assassinated two Iranian nuclear scientists, Massoud Ali-Mohammadi and Majid Shahriari in the Iranian capital of Tehran.

    Several technology and scientific innovations and achievements in the fields of air-space, microelectronic technologies, new power technologies, nano technology, stem cells tech, Information Technology (IT), biotechnology, medicinal plants and medical sciences were displayed in the exhibition, IRIB reported on Monday.

    is that all medicinal plants except cannabis?

  6. how does Islamophobia in America compare to Irano-phobia in Saudi Arabia, or B'hai-phobia in Iran? How easily could I go around talking about the virtues of American society if I were in Qom? Racism together with rational and irrational phobias exist in all societies, the question is how responsive are those societies when it comes to recognizing and dealing with its own flaws. Every nation and state is a work in progress.

  7. Maybe you should ask why Iran not lets the BBC have offices in Tehran and BBC reporters to move around freely, when it expects the UK to let it do exactly that. Why the double standards?

    is freedom of speech a guaranteed right in the Islamic Republic? is it a guaranteed right in the UK? is PressTV the only "news" outlet who could be considered a propaganda machine?

    it is the UK who is applying the double standards in this case.

  8. I just feel you exhibit NO logic whatsoever and are just argumentative for the sake of being argumentative. I don't respond to such unsubstantiated attacks. Sorry!

    You said that birth control (not abortion mind you, but birth control methods that prevent pregnancy in the first place) is akin to murder. So according to your logic that means the rapist who impregnates his victim has prevented a murder from happening. If that is the case, shouldn't the court overlook his rape?

    You also said liberals are evil. First, please answer Kadhim's criticisms of your usage of the words 'liberal' and 'conservative.' These are indeed relative terms and you have made no effort to give us your operational definitions. But let's just say liberal and conservative are being used in the American context. I personally think George Bushes are evil men, i think Cheney is an evil man, Wolfowitz, Perle, and many others. These named men are conservatives and have been directly responsible for over a million deaths. Do you think they are evil or good?

    You are espousing an anti-intellectual hate-filled ideology. You are the one who appears to be aspiring to evil you self-righteous simpleton.

  9. .

    The Holy Book says, "Woe must come unto the world, but woe unto him, (or her) who brings that woe." Motive is everything in dealing with God's commandments.

    We are talking here about these married couples, or couples of marriageable age, premeditatedly planning and carrying out the intentional destruction of life by effectually killing their own sperm and egg seconds before they can come together to give life to a child.

    To an unbeliever this is simply taking life, but to a believer it is tantamount to murder.

    Will the rapist then who impregnates his victim not be held accountable for his crime since, by your logic, he has saved a life as a consequence of his actions, a life that would not have otherwise been had he not raped the girl?

    Using reason properly begins by first making the correct assumptions. From either the Islamic or the humanist point of view, your assumptions are flawed.

  10. You really think so bro? Founder seems genuine. There's been a rejuvenation (however small) in the west by individuals that are seeing social morality spiraling out of control, basically they don't want the US to turn into another Rome (refer to Corruption and the Decline of Rome by MacMullen). They are seeing all the telltale signs, rampant pornography, sodomy, drugs and alcohol, etc. They want to shield their children from it, but don't know how. Many don't want it to be just an intra-religious issue but inter-religious, encompassing all faiths, even atheists, as long as the basic universal understand of morality is kept intact. He seems to be one of those individuals. Even in China (See Link) they've started rolling out Confuscius' teachings to children as a strategy to shield Chinese from the 'degrading morals' of Westernization that's infiltrated Chinese society, even though the CCP attacked it in the early 1900s.

    The major challenge though is a common understanding on what constitutes morality, with birth-control being just one example of a possible conflict of understanding. It's similar in nature to the UN and what are the Universal Principals of Human Rights. They were conjured up by the Western Allies post-WWII but China and Russia might have a different perspective on what are Human Rights. Wa Allahu a'lam.

    Near the top of his opening post he says:

    "This topic is not well understood by either Muslims, Christians and/or other groups, yet it is the most defining fundamental affecting everyone's lives, in every nation and religion. The reason it is not well understood is that evil people (Liberals) in all groups want to suppress this sort of understanding. This delineation divides every group, even businesses, because it is endemic to the human nature placed in us by the Creator. In computer terms, it is the software installed in our brain at our inception."

    FounderChurch equates evil people with liberals. This sounds like the founding of a hate ideology to me. Liberal and conservative are two sides of the same coin. It is futile for one side to deny the existence of the other side. Doing so leads to crimes like genocide as well as intolerant political environments. What does Confucius say about achieving a balanced society?

  11. Without question the onus of peace is on the Israelis.

    He doesn't and he'll come back to you saying he's trying to analyse the situation but the truth is he's here to agitate, not communicate. There's nothing more arrogant than a westerner (if we take his word for it) thinking that they "know best" for us peasantly easterners, when the truth is our civilisation is much older than theirs.

    I am a Westerner but try not to aspire to such arrogance. Americans need a dose of libertarianism to coat our politics. We are not the World.

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