Iran Democracy Foundation

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"The recent Iraq war has emboldened certain forces in the US, namely the neoconservatives, in their attempts to concoct an Iraq-style fate for Iran," Mahan Abedin wrote in the May 29, 2003, Lebanon Wire/Daily Star.

"The objective of the neoconservatives, as exemplified by the anti-Iran lobbying of Michael Ledeen, is to set Iran and the US on a collision course. Apart from the ratcheting up of standard US accusations, recently reproduced by Donald Rumsfeld, the American right has made efforts to prop up the opposition against the Islamic Republic. Indeed Iranian monarchists are being sponsored as a tool of American policy. Reza Mirpanj Pahlavi the son of the former deposed shah was invited to a meeting with US Congressional Representatives and staffers on Capitol Hill. Reza Pahlavi regularly referred to as 'your majesty' in the meeting ­ made a speech that could have come straight out of a neoconservative think tank," Abedin wrote.

"Apart from monarchist tutelage over the Iran Democracy Foundation, there are reports" that Senator Sam Brownback's "introduction of an amendment on April 8 [203] that would provide $50 million to an Iran Democracy Foundation ... has its origins in the Pentagon and mirrors the Iraq Liberation Act of 1998. Moreover the monarchists, whose divided ranks are often riven with strife and acrimony, are making moves to present a united front. Monarchists are known to have lobbied the Pentagon to disarm the Iraqi-based Mojahedin-e-Khalgh Organization. They are now hoping to capitalize on the MKO's misfortune and secure a dominant position in exiled Iranian politics," Abedin wrote.

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