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Iran, Mars and Germany's Far-right

DW-WORLD readers this week commented on negotiations over Iran's nuclear ambitions, new clues to life on Mars and Germany's neo-Nazis, who fared well in recent elections.

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Is there life on the red planet?

Iran's nuclear ambitions

Diplomacy can only work if it is backed by economic or military options. Talk alone will not impress the Iranian mullahs. They are already playing games with the EU and the UN; very similar to Saddam's games in Iraq. Lets not forget that Iran has been a long-term player in the promotion of terrorism. Iran as it stands now, is an international problem that will linger until more serious economic or military options are considered. -- Boyd Lawrence, USA

Nukleare Anlage im Iran

Boushehr nuclear power plant, Tehran, Iran

The EU must remain engaged with Iran for as long as possible. Unfortunately, the Iraq invasion has given Iran every incentive to develop a deterrent against the US, and we can expect global nuclear proliferation to be a consequence of US/British policy in the region. From my vantage point, Bush is assured of victory in November, and the neo conservatives are salivating at the possibility of invading Iran. The EU cannot quietly step aside and allow history to repeat itself. -- Mark Sawyer

In terms of dollars and cents it is much cheaper to produce energy from fossil fuel since Iran has vast resources of natural gas and oil. So the matter of nuclear power is to gain political leverage against anyone who opposes the fanatical institutions that the mullahs in Iran are supporting. At the current political situation in Iran, it is a must to dismantle all nuclear activities and installations and transform the Iran's nuclear power plant into a conventional power one -- if the mullahs of Iran are really interested in generating electricity and not a bomb. -- Saeed Naeini

New Clues to Life on Mars

Should the ESA have held back its announcement until it could show a more concrete link between life and the concentration of water vapor and methane gas? From a PR perspective, yes. Many members of the general public will jump on a bandwagon and declare that there is life on mars, without reading the fine print. From a science perspective, no. The presence of methane and water together is of interest to anyone with a scientific or engineering background because it provides more fuel to model Mars accurately. Short of finding a mass of cells, our best hope for determining whether or not there is life is to model mars' conditions accurately and eliminate other sources of methane. -- David Johnson

German neo -Nazis

Kahlgeschorene Demonstranten stehen am Samstag (01.05.2004) in Berlin in einer Gruppe von rechtsextremen NPD-Anhängern

neo-Nazis at a demonstration

The rise of neo-Nazi parties in east German states is a concern because nothing indicates that the socio-economic problems in the east will disappear. Hence, people in these states will remain angry and continue to give protest votes to extremist parties. I even fear that this trend will increase to the western German states - in Saarland, the right-wing attracted some 4 percent of electoral votes. With the employment problems only increasing all over Germany, it should not come as a big surprise if the extremist groups enter many more state parliaments. However, the situation in Germany is no worse than in many other EU states. Italy, France, Denmark, Belgium, Netherlands and many more are also struggling against far-right extremist political parties. In Italy, the neo-fascist Alleanza Nazionale and Lega Nord are even in a coalition government with (Premier Silvio) Berlusconi's Forza Italia. In Denmark, the far-right Dansk folkparti is also (Danish Premier Anders) Fogh Rasmussen government's main supporting party. -- Atilla A Iftikhar









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