This short video shows how the Supreme Leader Ali Khamene’i empowered the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corp (IRGC) to build a financial empire and dominate much of the Iranian economy and financial system and where the money ends up in funding international terrorism in Lebanon, Iraq, Yemen and elsewhere and how the money is used to fuel the Syria war. The video explains that it is time to designate the IRGC as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO). This 3 minute video clip is made based on the newly published book, “The Rise of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards’ Financial Empire: How the Supreme Leader and the IRGC Rob the People to Fund International Terror.”
|Saudi army tanks are seen deployed near the Saudi-Yemeni border,|
By Heshmat Alavi
American Thinker, June 14, 2017 – With the new U.S. administration blueprinting its Iran policy after escalating developments in Syria and the recent attacks in Tehran, one major battleground between the two arch-rivals is set to be Yemen. Sitting at the opening of a major waterway through which a significant amount of the world’s seabound oil flows, this country of 27 million has been war-torn and desperately grappling with a famine currently risking the lives of 7 million people.
Heshmat Alavi is a political and rights activist. His writing focuses on Iran, including human rights violations, social crackdown, the regime’s support for terrorism and meddling in foreign countries, and the controversial nuclear program. He tweets at @HeshmatAlavi and blogs at IranCommentary.
With the new U.S. administration blueprinting its Iran policy after escalating developments in Syria and the recent attacks in Tehran, one major battleground between the two arch-rivals is set to be Yemen. Sitting at the opening of a major waterway through which a significant amount of the world’s seabound oil flows, this country of 27 million has been war-torn and desperately grappling with a famine currently risking the lives of 7 million people.
All the while, Iran and its offspring terror organization, the Lebanese Hezb’allah, are escalating their meddling in a war that has already left more than 10,000 killed and literally leveled the country’s already poor infrastructure.
And while the United Nations has issued pleas for support to boost the efforts of humanitarian aid organizations, signs show that Iran and its Houthi proxies are ignoring these calls. The larger picture of the Middle East power struggle is casting a…
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by Shahriar Kia
At a time when Iran is engulfed in a conglomerate of domestic and international crises, the regime witnessed two unexpected attacks by ISIS against its godfather in Tehran, marking the first such attack by the terror group on Iranian soil.
Parallel to denunciations from across the globe, the Iranian opposition National Council of Resistance of Iran condemned the attack and warned of Tehran taking advantage of such a development.
“ISIS’s conduct clearly benefits the Iranian regime’s Supreme Leader Khamenei, who wholeheartedly welcomes it as an opportunity to overcome his regime’s regional and international impasse and isolation. The founder and the number one state sponsor of terror is thus trying to switch the place of the murderer and the victim and portray the central banker of terrorism as a victim,” Rajavi said.
Reports and evidence to this day show the presence and crimes committed by ISIS in Iraq and Syria were to the sole benefit of Iran, allowing this regime to justify its role in this region. Iran, in contrast to other countries of the Middle East, has been the only country where ISIS and al-Qaeda had not conducted a terror attack. This could not have been a mere coincidence.
Strangely, all signs indicate Iran actually welcomed this incident. Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei outrageously described this attack, that according to state media left 17 killed and dozens of others injured, merely as “playing with firecrackers.” Maybe he witnessed a potential in this turn of events to cloak the dilemmas and crises his entire apparatus is facing.
The spread of domestic rallies against the mullahs in Iran, the recent presidential election quagmire, escalating protests and gatherings staged outside the parliament by investors who have lost their savings in two now-bankrupt financial firms linked to the Revolutionary Guards, and strong positions taken by the United States and more than 50 Arabic and Muslim countries in the recent Riyadh Summit are a small slate of the regime’s current calamities.
To this end, this terrorist attack couldn’t have come at a better timing for the regime and provided a number of desperately needed lifelines. The Iranian regime will now seek to justify repressive measures against domestic protests, seek to normalize conditions to portray a status quo similar to those prior to the May presidential election, and escalate its meddling in other countries under the pretext of the war against ISIS.
Despite the fact that ISIS has claimed responsibility for this attack, people inside Iran have taken to Telegram and other social media platforms to express their surprise and suspicions, questioning how assailants were able to penetrate into the parliament, especially considering the already tight security atmosphere in Iran. They are also doubting claims made by various MPs who claimed the parliament’s sessions continued despite attackers entering the building. Conflicting reports were issued by official sources regarding the number of attackers and other factors, further adding to the public’s doubts over the entire issue.
It is worth noting that Iran has a history of resorting to similar measures when pinned against insurmountable crises. For example, on June 20th, 1994, at a time when thousands of people had filled the Imam Reza Shrine, considered Iran’s holiest site in the country located in the northeastern city of Mashhad, a powerful bombing left dozens of pilgrims killed and hundreds wounded.
The Iranian regime raised allegations against its main opposition, the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK). Khamenei sent a message demanding the PMOI be punished, including expulsion from European countries and Iraq. Five years later, as the light was shed on the “chain murders” in Iran, evidence surfaced showing the role of Iran’s Ministry of Intelligence in the Mashhad bombing. In 1999 Iran’s Armed Forces Judiciary Organization issued a statement accusing Saeid Emami, then Iranian deputy minister of intelligence under Ali Fallahian, acknowledging further the MOIS role in this attack.
There are also voices heard arguing that the Iranian regime and ISIS enjoyed an unwritten agreement, similar to the relationship between Syria’s Bashar Assad regime and ISIS. It is to no surprise at all, considering the fact that both parties believe their ending is near. The mullahs are losing the war against the Iranian people, and ISIS is more vulnerable than ever in the face of a global coalition. Their golden era has come to an end.
To uproot terrorism in the Middle East, Rajavi emphasized the following measures:
- The IRGC must be designated as a terrorist entity.
- The IRGC and paramilitary proxies of the Khamenei caliphate must be removed from Syria, Iraq, and Yemen.
- The Organization of Islamic Cooperation must expel the mullahs’ regime and recognize the Iranian Resistance for ending religious fascism.
originally published in the dally caller
Iran’s destructive policies
Importance of the Levant
Against all parties
After the election tally was completed and President Hassan Rouhani was elected for his second term, he held a press conference outlining domestic and foreign policies. It was an enlightening conference, showcasing how little he really intends or is able to create real change in Iran.
His first point was that Iran’s current military efforts throughout the Middle East will continue, adding that they are on the ground in Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon. He also pointed out that Iran has fought and will continue to fight against terrorism in the region.
“Iran has and will continue to support these through its diplomats and military advisors,” said Rouhani. “The Iranians and Russians fought against terrorism alongside the Syrians and the Iraqis. Who continues to fund the terrorists?…The U.S. government has never fought against terrorism…Hezbollah is a group accepted and trusted by the people of Lebanon.”
In addition, there was the…
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Aiding and abetting terrorists is bad business
The Colorado Statesman, May 5, 2017 – Sometimes international law is ambiguous. Sometimes not. When it comes to murdering civilians and using chemical weapons to get the job done, there are no grey areas, no fuzzy lines, no mitigating circumstances. Such practices are clearly and specifically prohibited under what’s called “the law of war.” That makes Bashar al-Assad, Syria’s dynastic dictator, a war criminal. And it makes Iran his chief accomplice.
As far back as 2005, Jane’s Defense Weekly reported that Iran’s rulers were actively helping Mr. Assad launch an “innovative chemical warfare program” — providing technology to build equipment that would produce “hundreds of tons of precursors for VX, sarin nerve agents and mustard blister agent.”
When it comes to the Islamic Republic, President Trump and his advisors are under no illusions. “Everywhere you look, if there’s trouble in the region, you find Iran,” Secretary of Defense James Mattis said last Wednesday during a visit to Saudi Arabia.
“Iran is the world’s leading state-sponsor of terrorism,” Secretary of State Rex Tillerson reaffirmed the same day. The clerical regime, he added, “is responsible for intensifying multiple conflicts and undermining U.S. interests in countries such as Syria, Yemen, Iraq, and Lebanon and continuing to support attacks against Israel. An unchecked Iran has the potential to travel the same path as North Korea and take the world along with it.”
So what’s the Trump administration’s strategy for checking Iran? That’s still a work in progress. But some measures can and should be taken immediately. In particular, unlike his predecessor, President Trump should refrain from facilitating Iran’s support for terrorism and war crimes.
For example: During the final months of the Obama administration, the U.S. Treasury Department issued a license for Boeing to sell 100 new planes to Iran Air, “The Airline of the Islamic Republic of Iran.” Treasury also issued licenses to Airbus for a similarly sized deal. Iranian officials claim these aircraft will be used for civilian purposes only.
The evidence suggests they’re lying. Emanuele Ottolenghi, my colleague at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, has been painstakingly tracking Iran Air flights between Tehran and Damascus. There have been 768 since Jan. 16, 2016, the day that President Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) was implemented. Of those, 129 were on Iran Air.
Dr. Ottolenghi believes few, if any, are ferrying tourists keen on sightseeing, shopping and fine dining. He believes they are supplying military equipment and fighters in support of Mr. Assad’s forces and those of Hezbollah, Iran’s Lebanon-based proxy militia which has been deployed to help defend Mr. Assad’s regime.
It’s worth recalling that, in 2011, Treasury “designated” Iran Air for providing material support and services to Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps which had itself been designated for proliferating weapons of mass destruction. Treasury particularly noted that Iran Air had been transporting “missile or rocket components to Syria.”
Then, suddenly, just over a year ago, Iran Air’s designation was removed. Administration spokesmen declined to explain why except to say they were acting “pursuant” to the JCPOA. An educated guess: President Obama had added a sweetener — one of many — to a deal he saw as essential to his legacy.
Decades of sanctions against Iran’s civil aviation sector were lifted as well. In congressional testimony earlier this month, Dr. Ottolenghi said that from Iran’s perspective, the timing could not have been better: This was the point at which the aviation sector “became vital to Tehran’s war efforts in the Syrian theater.”
Dr. Ottolenghi is recommending that the Trump administration, at the least, now “suspend licensing for aircraft deals while it conducts a thorough review of their role in the airlifts to Syria.”
The U.S. intelligence community has the means to determine what’s moving between Iran and Syria. If these flights are, in fact, military rather than commercial and civilian, Dr. Ottolenghi would urge the administration to sanction — or rather re-sanction — Iran’s entire aviation sector. Because these would be non-nuclear sanctions, doing so would not violate the JCPOA. Airbus’s license can and should be suspended as well because its planes contain key parts made in the USA.
The same week Mr. Assad used chemical weapons to slaughter more than 70 people in northwestern Syria, yet another Iranian airline, Aseman, signed yet another deal to purchase Boeing planes. Aseman’s CEO, Hossein Alaei, spent most of his life in Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps and its Ministry of Defense, a branch of Iran’s government also designated for proliferating weapons of mass destruction and their delivery system. President Trump should instruct Treasury not to grant a license to Aseman either.
Executives, stockholders and lobbyists for Boeing and Airbus will not be pleased by what I’ve written above. But they should ask themselves: Do they really want history to record that they helped Iran Air enable Mr. Assad’s mass murder of innocent men, women and children?
Under the JCPOA, Iran’s rulers agreed to delay — not end — a nuclear weapons program whose existence they do not acknowledge. In exchange, they’ve received billions of dollars as well as permission to join the nuclear weapons club a few years down the road. What if, at that point, they’re still the world’s leading sponsors of terrorism, vowing genocide against Israel and “Death to America!”? Under the deal Mr. Obama concluded, that won’t matter.
When it comes to the threats President Obama left for his successor, none is more daunting than that posed by Tehran. In principle, President Trump should be encouraging Boeing and other American companies to make a buck abroad. But as a matter of principle, President Trump should not allow Boeing nor any other American companies to be in the business of aiding and abetting terrorists and war criminals.
Clifford D. May is president of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD) columnist for the Washington Times and member of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), an independent bipartisan federal body reporting to the president, secretary of state, and Congress. May’s columns regularly appear in The Colorado Statesman.