Today, at Wilson Center in Washington, Bijan Khajehpour, an oil consultant close to the regime was the key speaker at an event titled: "The Nuclear Issue: Why is Iran Negotiating?" Two other speakers were Michael Adler, a Wilson scholar and Alireza Nader from Rand. Khajehpour is the founder and manager of Atieh Bahar, a company with close ties to the regime especially Rafsanjani clan.
As predicted, Khajehpour, a regular speaker at Wilson, presented regime's talking point and argued that the sanctions are not hurting the regime and therefore, to find a solution to the Iranian nuclear impasse, the West should offer more concessions.
After the event ended, the online video stopped but the sound continued as Adler's mic remained open and we could hear his conversation with someone close to him. Adler talked about Khajehpour's presentation on the Iranian economy and the assertion that the regime is not under pressure. Adler told his interlocutor that Khajehpour seemed unrealistic to him and added that he believes Khajehpour has an agenda. The person talking to Adler found Khajehpour biased.
Adler and his colleague are right, Khajehpor has an agenda and a motivation because his Atieh Bahar company has been acting as an intermediate between Iranian regime and foreign corporation. His agenda is simply to remove sanctions against Iran. that is good for his business.
The question is why over the past ten years, Wilson Center's Haleh Esfandiari has been regularly inviting Khajehpour and other Atieh Bahar officers to Wilson Center where they have found a formidable podium to misinform the public. Why tax payers' money has been paid to the Iranian regime's advocates.