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1-15 October 2013      24 Ziqadah-9 Zilhijjah 1434 Hijri

Note: Using editorials as an indicator, this series presents views, understanding and attitude of the Urdu periodicals in India towards various developments concerning the Middle East.  The  selection  of  an  item  does  not  mean  the  endorsement  or concurrence with their accuracy or views. Editor, MEI@ND

The Etemaad Urdu Daily (The Confidence Urdu Daily), Hyderabad
Editorial, 8 October 2013, Tuesday
1. US-Iran Talks
Tensions between Iran and the US have eased off to an extent after Rouhani’s election. The Iranian president has the backing of his people as well as Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei. The conversation during the UN General Assembly meeting between Obama and Rouhani was the first such conversation between US and Iranian presidents in the last 34 years.

Khamenei, while addressing a military gathering, approved of Rouhani’s diplomatic initiatives by terming them as important and in the right direction. He, however, reiterated his stand that Iran is not very hopeful of improving relations with the US because of its policies since the revolution.

These developments have created some hope for resolution of the Iranian nuclear crisis but have infuriated the conservative section in Iran as well as in Israel. It has also angered the pro-Israeli lobby in the US that has always tried to instigate the US administration to take military action against Iran.

The Iranian Majlis has also expressed its satisfaction over the initiatives taken by the President. Rouhani had briefed the Majlis of his talk with the US president and Iran’s statement in the General Assembly; 230 of the 290 members of the Majlis have issued a statement supporting Rouhanis’s diplomatic initiatives.

The talks between Iran and six world powers will take place in Geneva in the next two weeks. Meanwhile, Israeli premier Netanyahu has stated that Israel will not allow Iran to acquire nuclear weapons capabilities. He also advised the world powers to ignore Iranian overtures to resolve the crisis.

Rouhani has also emphasised the need for a timely resolution of the crisis because further delays can deteriorate the situation. There can be efforts by rogue elements to sabotage or derail the talks. Moreover, Iran has nabbed a number of agents in the past years who were found to be spying on the Iranian nuclear establishments.

The two governments are not willing to go for military confrontation which is a good sign. The Iranian economy has been adversely affected by international sanctions. The oil-industry has almost been shut down and its foreign exchange reserves have drastically come down. Iran is also facing a shortage of necessary medicines and medical equipment. It has not been able to procure new technology to run its industries.

If things move in the right direction, the US will ease off the sanctions that will further boost the chances of reconciliation. This will also weaken the conservatives in Iran and more people will support the government efforts. Moreover, apart from Israel, some Gulf countries who oppose the Iranian nuclear programme will understand that it is good for regional peace. It is important to take benefit of these developments and find a permanent solution to the problem and give peace a chance.

Inquilab (The Revolution), Mumbai
Editorial, 11October 2013, Friday
2. Dangerous Weapons, US and Israel
An important question that has emerged with respect to the non-proliferation of WMDs after the Syrian agreement to destroy its stockpile of chemical weapons is whether the Israeli nuclear weapons should also be destroyed? In principle, other countries who have stocked WMDs should also come forward and destroy them. The problem however, is that neither Israel will agree to it nor the US and its allies will put pressure on Israel to do so.

No American president has been able to put enough pressure on Israel to take any action on any issue. They have mostly served Israeli interests. In fact, the US has vetoed many UNSC resolutions against Israel. The Jewish lobby in the US has not let American administrations take any tough measures against Israel. Moreover, Israel gets an annual aid of US$3 billion from the US. In the US, nobody can criticise Israel and if anybody does that, the person is labelled as anti-Semitic. The US was the first country to recognise Israel in 1948. The Jewish lobby has constantly strengthened with time and holds major influence in all important industries.

Israel has been cited as an exemplary democratic country, which is nothing but an exaggeration. The US has always provided all strategic and military help to Israel to keep it a powerful player in the region. This is not hidden from the world and the US has not minced words in expressing its support for Israel. Therefore, it is impossible that it will put pressure on Israel to destroy its stockpile of nuclear and biological weapons.

Compiled and Translated by Md. Muddassir Quamar

Md. Muddassir Quamar is a Doctoral Candidate at the School of International Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi.  Email 

As part of its editorial policy, the MEI@ND standardizes spelling and date formats to make the text uniformly accessible and stylistically consistent. The views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views/positions of the MEI@ND. Editor, MEI@ND: P R Kumaraswamy.