By Stephen Lendman

US dirty war on Iran targets its scientists

October 28, 2019 - 22:35

US war on Iran by other means is all about wanting the nation colonized as a vassal state, its sovereignty eliminated, its oil, gas, and other resources looted, its people exploited as serfs.

Illegal US sanctions are weapons of war by other means, what Iranian officials call economic terrorism.

They’re all about crushing its economy and immiserating its people. War by other means also targets Iranian scientists, notably distinguished stem cell expert Masoud Soleimani.

He heads Tarbiat Modares University’s Hematology Department, his academic credentials and scientific standing as an eminent expert in his field recognized internationally.

Granted visa permission to visit the US, he was en route to Rochester, MN to work at the Mayo Clinic, invited to head a research program involved in treating stroke patients.

On arrival in the US a year ago, he was unlawfully arrested and indefinitely detained, held without bond or trial, his fundamental rights denied, a distinguished scientist brutalized as a political prisoner for being an Iranian national, the world community ignoring his appalling mistreatment.

His former students Mahboobe Ghaedi (a permanent US resident) and Maryam Jazayeri (a naturalized US citizen) face similar false federal charges for allegedly attempting to export biological material to Iran without US authorization. They were released on bond.

According to attorney Leonard Franco representing Soleimani, he and his two former students were secretly indicted, falsely charged with trade sanctions violations, relating to vials of human growth hormone.

They were seized from one of his former students in 2016 by US customs agents while Obama was still president.

Franco explained that the growth hormone in question is used legally in the US, Iran and elsewhere. Soleimani is involved in medical research, his work “considered largely exempt from (US) sanctions.”

The growth hormone he worked on was legally allowed for export to Iran from April 7, 2014 – December 22, 2016.

The FBI earlier said it found “no nefarious purpose” behind Soleimani’s request for a former student to deliver the substance in question to him for medical research.

Yet in June Trump’s Justice Department extrajudicially, months before arriving in the US his visa not rescinded even though charged, showing the Trump regime wanted him arrested, prosecuted, and imprisoned as part of its war on Iran by other means.

His stem cell/regenerative medicine research violates no US laws nor any elsewhere. It’s invaluable work, advancing medical science in an important field, its benefits able to help people in need worldwide.

Soleimani suffers from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). His condition deteriorated in detention because of denial of proper medical treatment.

Disease symptoms include cramping, abdominal pain, bloating, gas, diarrhea, constipation, or both, a chronic condition requiring longterm care, he’s denied in detention.

Dozens of Iranian nationals are politically incarcerated in the US gulag prison system, largely for allegedly violating unlawfully imposed US sanctions.

October 25 marked the one-year anniversary of Soleimani’s unlawful arrest and detention — victimized by US imperial viciousness.

Days earlier, his wife Dr. Mahnaz Rabeie condemned his unlawful arrest, detention and mistreatment — including denial of numerous attempts by her and other family members to provide him with vital medications he’s not given in prison.

Reportedly he lost over 30 pounds, his mental and physical condition deteriorating, including severe vision loss.

His wife’s statement as reported by Press TV said the following:

“I, Dr. Rabiei, as the wife of Professor Masoud Soleimani, along with other members of this international elite’s family, condemn this hostile act by the US government and believe the abuse of nationals to oppress their government is an inhumane act and a clear example of human rights violation.”

“The conspiracy by the US government and Mayo Clinic to set up and arrest a scientist, who is expert in his field (stem cells) and has stepped in to help hard-to-cure patients around the world was a purposeful movement, especially when we see he has authored numerous articles in the field and recently advanced eye-catchingly.”

“This move is meant to keep a non-American scientist away from science and advancement.”

“(Hereby) we object to the move by Mayo Clinic which has used the scientific arena to trap a scientist from a foreign country to be incarcerated in US prisons.”

“We believe that making conditions insecure for scientists and the elite in every society disrupts the production of knowledge and diminishes the enthusiasm of leading world researchers.”

“Obviously, no sensible person approves of this biased and inhumane behavior. Therefore, we explicitly demand that if the United States claims to respect human rights and justice, it must release Professor Masoud Soleimani as soon as possible because there is no adequate evidence to convict this innocent scientist.”

“Perhaps, if there were (any evidence against him), his trial would not adjourn for a year.”

“We are extremely grateful to Tarbiat Modares University of Tehran and all Iranian institutions, especially the Foreign Ministry, as well as independent media outlets and journalists who are working on the release of Dr. Masoud Soleimani and investigating the reasons for his detention; especially the ones which condemn the US administration's cowardly act.”

“We call on Iranian and non-Iranian scholars and scientists to protest against the US government and its anti-human rights policies to avoid recurrence of such cases.”

“We also urge them to demand the US government and its legal system to immediately release Professor Masoud Soleimani.”

“However, we also urge the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran to pursue this process more seriously than ever, given that the issue was not given much importance at first, and the case was investigated after six months.”

“This is no immediate action has been taken to release this innocent scientist, while his prolonged incarceration and the unlawful damages and difficulties are increasingly ongoing.”

“Meanwhile, the unfortunate death of his mother following the shock of her son’s arrest, made Dr. Masoud Soleimani’s wish to visit his mother unattainable forever.”

“This irreparable grievance has greatly aggravated the suffering caused by his disastrous condition, while the mental and physical condition of this philanthropic scientist is currently unfavorable.”

“The esteemed government of the Islamic Republic of Iran should take immediate action to free this enlightened scientist, regardless of the considerations that have sometimes been too time-consuming and problematic.”

“Above all, we do ask God the Almighty to return this praiseworthy son, faithful husband, kind father, exemplary university professor, kind-hearted scholar and friend to his family, his university, and scientific community of Iran and the world.”

Soleimani is held hostage to US hostility toward Iran, notably since Trump took office — the world community and UN doing nothing to condemn his lawless arrest, detention, and mistreatment, nothing to demand his immediate release.

A personal note:

The nation I grew up in no longer exists, never beautiful, today an unparalleled global menace.

Long ago, I felt safe and secure, no longer because of the rage by my country for world dominance by whatever it takes to achieve it, the human toll of no consequence.

As a US citizen in my 9th decade, I’m appalled by endless US wars of aggression, its diabolical imperial agenda, its unspeakable human and civil rights abuses, its contempt for the rights of ordinary people everywhere — its highest of high crimes against humanity.

Today is the most perilous time in world history, a deplorable state that should scare everyone.

What happened to Dr. Soleimani can happen to anyone, including independent truth-telling journalists unwilling to stay silent about US abuses of power no one should tolerate anywhere.

My heart goes out to Dr. Soleimani, his wife, other family members, and to everyone everywhere mistreated by hegemon USA, a police state masquerading as democratic.

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My newest book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."


Stephen Lendman, born in 1934 in Boston, started writing on major world and national issues began in summer 2005. In early 2007, radio hosting followed. Lendman now hosts the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network three times weekly. Distinguished guests are featured. Listen live or archived. Major world and national issues are discussed. Lendman is a 2008 Project Censored winner and 2011 Mexican Journalists Club international journalism award recipient. Lendman wrote this article for Press TV website.

Lendman’s newest book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."