Giving all a piece of the pie
The political risks of various pipeline routes in the Caspian
A lecture presented by Hooshang Amirahmadi at the Conference on Energy
for Europe: Perspectives and Problems of Crude Oil Exports from the Caspian
Sea to Europe Technische Universitat Braunschweig, Germany, October 19,
Geopolitics of pipelines from the Central Asia and Caucasus to markets
in Europe, Asia and elsewhere have become a major foreign policy issue
for the U.S. in the last few year. Countries like Iran, Turkey and Russia
are competing to gain a piece of the great pie. However, Washington favors
Turkey for political reasons and against the will of its business community.
At stake for Iran is strategic, not just economic, gains or loss. No wonder
the U.S. is not letting the business executives and the states in the Caspian
region play the pipeline game among themselves. The winners of the game
will reap strategic benefits while losers will become marginalized for
sometime to come. It is in this context that I assess the political risks
of various pipeline routes and suggest an alternative.
In what follows, I shall first provide a description of various routes
and their advocates and then give an outline of the major risk factors
involved including the extent they are ignored or accounted for in the
positions held by the regional players. I shall conclude by proposing that
decisions concerning oil and gas pipelines should recognize the need for
multiple routes as dictated by political, economic, technical and strategic
realities, and that a grand cooperative and win-win strategy is preferred
over the current alliance-making and win-lose games. Yet, the most important
preconditions for a sustainable transport of Caspian energy are national
political and economic developments. The proposed framework is based on
the assumption that the long-term prospect for every player is much richer
than what it can achieve by maximizing its short-term gains... GO
The Big Game
Tehran, (HAMSHAHRI) - Historic rivals Piruzi and Esteqlal will face
off in Azadi stadium on Friday Nov 13.... FULL
TEXT IN PERSIAN
Iran's budding revolutionaries quizzed on the Great Satan
By Christophe de Roquefeuil
TEHRAN, Nov 12 (AFP) - Budding Iranian revolutionaries are in line for
major quiz prizes if they can answer questions about the "dark side"
of US history and provide suggestions on how best to give the "Great
Satan" a "big slap in the face."
A revolutionary group is offering unspecified "valuable prizes"
to anyone giving the correct answers to 40 questions about Iran's great
enemy, the United States, especially in its relations with the Islamic
The quiz -- "What is the US thinking?" -- has been compiled
by the Islamic Propagation Organisation and published in three of the country's
more conservative newspapers to test Iranians on their knowlege of America's
historical misdeeds... FULL
* What the heck is a "Rahbar"?
A. P. writes: Many of you may have already received the first "Iran Report" from the
Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty by A. William Samii in Prague at firstname.lastname@example.org. However what I cannot
understand is why they insist in using Persian words, while they are reporting
in English. If it is aimed at an Iranian audience, then why not write in
Persian using the English alphabet? And if it is aimed for all, then why
use words such as "Rahbar"? ... none of my foreign friends understood
who the hell was a Rahbar... FULL
* Guy de-you-know-who
Figaretti writes: Regarding Guive Mirfendereski's "Giving
Batul a chance":
Guy de-somebody? It's Guy de Maupassant, who wrote "The Necklace"!!
* Film: Ramin Naimi's film in San Francisco
There is a movie by Ramin Niami named "Somewhere in the City"
which will be playing at the Opera Plaza, San Francisco. Show times: 4:20
, 7 and 9:15 Friday Nov 13 - Thursday Nov 19 2, 4:20 , 7 and 9:15 Sat&
Sunady. Opera Plaza: 415-352-0810
Thanks to Hamid Asayesh
Book of the Week
A Persian Requiem
By Simin Daneshvar
Translated by Roxane Zand
The first published novel by an Iranian woman and one of
the most widely read novels in Iran.
Click here to read about this book
New! Books on Rumi
British energy industry delegation due in Iran
TEHRAN, Nov 12 (Reuters) - A delegation from
the British energy industry arrives in Tehran on Friday for a series of
talks on potential oil and gas projects, a British official said on Thursday.
Several days of talks were scheduled with representatives of Iran's state
energy complex and the private sector, the official said ... FULL TEXT
Smuggling blamed for currency freefall
TEHRAN, Nov 12 (AFP) - An Iranian finance ministry official on
Thursday blamed illegal imports of goods for the dramatic fall in the value
of the national currency, the rial. Deputy Finance Minister Morteza Qarah-Baqian
said up to 1.6 billion dollars of goods were being smuggled into the country
each year. "This helps create a currency black market and contributes
to the instability in the exchange market," he said, quoted by newspapers.
He called on the government to eliminate the underground economy, which
he estimated represented between 15 percent to 30 percent of the total economy...
Women bring Iranian cinema to the U.S.
WASHINGTON, DC (Search for Common Ground)
- Six of Iran's foremost women film-makers will visit the U.S. in November
as part of a continuing effort to foster greater American-Iranian understanding.
The visit is being organized by Search for Common Ground (SCG), a Washington-based
conflict resolution organization, and Khaneh Cinema, a professional association
for film-makers in Iran, in close cooperation with the Film Center at the
School of the Art Institute in Chicago and the Film Society at Lincoln Center
in New York... FULL TEXT
Women take off their hijab? In a theater?
Tehran, (HAMSHAHRI) - Culture Minister Ataollah Mohajerani
has denied an accusation by a member of the Majlis that 30 women took off
their scarves in a movie theater in Tehran ... FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN
University basij units get broader powers
Tehran, (HAMSHAHRI) - Hardline students have gotten
new powers from the Majlis in dealing with moderate forces in universities
... FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN
Tehran, (HAMSHAHRI) - Musicians at the Niavaran Culural
Center have delivered a poor performance of some of the great works of classical
music, including those by Bach ... FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN
Iranian offers vineyard for Rushdie's death-paper
TEHRAN, Nov 12 (Reuters) - An Iranian grape
grower has offered a vineyard as a new bounty on the head of British author
Salman Rushdie, a newspaper reported on Thursday. Ebrahim Qassemi told the
hardline daily Kayhan he was making the offer because it was his ``ardent
desire that a proud and noble Moslem would one day end Salman Rushdie's
life.'' ... FULL TEXT
dollar now offered at up to 720-725 tomans
Source: Sehaty Exchange (U.S.) Tel: 602-595-0777
Daily Persian service. Need TrueSpeech
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Zamaaneh baa to nasaazad; to baa zamaaneh besaaz.
(If life hands you a lemon, make lemonade.)
From Simin Habibian's "1001 Persian-English Proverbs"
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Dash for dollars
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