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  • Masoud Dalvand 10:04 am on December 13, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , Terrorism,   

    After Fighting Common Enemy ISIS, How Will Rising Tensions Between U.S. and Iran Affect Iraq? 

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    How U.S. and Iran found a common enemy in ISIS

    After fighting ISIS, how will rising tensions between U.S. and Iran affect Iraq?
    Video – For watching the video click on the below link:

    https://player.pbs.org/viralplayer/3007409295/

    TRANSCRIPT :

    Judy Woodruff: Now the final installment in our series Iran Rising in Iraq that examines Tehran’s influence there, and what it means for U.S. policy in the region. Washington is worried about that sway and presence in Iraq, and is taking measures to counter it, raising U.S.-Iran tensions. But, tonight, we look at an extraordinary moment when the U.S. and Iran made common cause to fight a common enemy, and why many say that is unlikely to happen again. In partnership with the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting, here again is special correspondent Reza Sayah.

    Reza Sayah: October 2016, a coalition of military forces in Iraq launched an offensive to take back the city of Mosul from ISIS. And fighting on the same side were the United States and the Islamic Republic of Iran. Iraqi Army General Ghais Al-Hamdawi says it was a superbly coordinated mission.

    Maj. Gen. Ghais Al-hamdawi (through Interpreter): It was the perfect example of bravery and cooperation among everybody, the PMF, tanks, army, air force, the American Air Force, special ops, and even citizens took part. This battle should be a lesson for all the armies in the world.

    Reza Sayah: The mission was called We Are Coming. Among the forces helping the Iraqi army, 500 American troops on the ground and U.S. fighter jets providing air support, and 16,000 fighters from the Popular Mobilization Forces, PMF for short, a volunteer Iraqi militia largely armed and funded by Iran and advised by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard. For the next several months, the Iranian-backed militia helped overpower ISIS on the ground in towns and villages surrounding Mosul. Once ISIS was encircled and trapped, in came Iraqi forces, backed by U.S. artillery units and airpower, to finish the extremist group.

    Mazin Al-eshaiker: What unites both Iran and the United States is their goal to end ISIS, which we, as Iraqis, obviously appreciated.

    Reza Sayah: Iraqi politician Mazin Al-Eshaiker says Washington and Tehran never publicly acknowledged the strategy and never made direct contact to discuss it.

    Mazin Al-eshaiker: I’m talking the U.S. and Iranian didn’t sit face to face, but the Iraqis sat face to face with the Iranians, and, in the same token, sat face to face with the Americans to come up with a joint plan for both sides.

    Reza Sayah: The plan worked. In July, ISIS was defeated in its last major stronghold, thanks in part to a rare occasion where the United States and Iran tacitly cooperated to beat a common enemy. But Iraqi officials say, don’t expect U.S.-Iran cooperation again in Iraq any time soon.

    Mazin Al-eshaikerWe are free to dream what we want, but it will not happen.

    Reza Sayah: Under President Barack Obama, the U.S. policy with Iran was cautious engagement on some issues. With the election of President Donald Trump, the policy immediately changed to confrontation, escalating the nearly four-decade-long cold war between the countries. In October, President Donald Trump repeated accusations that Iran sponsors terrorism in the region, and slapped sanctions against Iran’s Revolutionary Guard.

    President Donald Trump: The Iranian dictatorship’s aggression continues to this day. The regime remains the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism.

    Reza Sayah: Mr. Trump also refused to certify that Iran was complying with the 2015 nuclear deal, even though the remaining world powers and U.N. inspectors said Iran was complying. Ten days later, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson visited Riyadh to boost Iraq’s ties with Iran’s main regional rival in the region, Saudi Arabia. Tillerson also suggested the PMF was an Iranian fighting force and called for the militia to disband, a demand the Iraqi government rejected, insisting PMF fighters were Iraqi nationals.

    Rex Tillerson: Certainly, Iranian militias that are in Iraq, now that the fight against Da’esh and ISIS is coming to a close, those militias need to go home.

    Reza Sayah: And, last week, CIA Director Mike Pompeo revealed that he had sent a letter to Qasem Soleimani, a senior commander in Iran’s Revolutionary Guard, warning Iran over its behavior in Iraq.

    Mike Pompeo: He refused to open the letter. It didn’t break my heart, to be honest with you. What we were communicating to him in that letter was that we will hold he and Iran accountable for any attacks on American interests in Iraq by forces that are under their control. And we wanted to make sure he and the leadership in Iran understood that in a way that was crystal clear.

    Reza Sayah: Senior Iranian officials have hit back in the war of words. Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif called U.S. policy in the Middle East dangerous. In a live televised address, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani accused Western countries, including the United States, of having fed and armed ISIS. And in a speech to university students last month, Iran’s supreme leader called the U.S. Iran’s number one enemy.

    Ayatollah Ali Khamenei (through Interpreter): My dear children, don’t forget that in this very important path where you’re following your goals, your number one enemy is America.

    Seyed Hosseini: America has to learn a lesson.

    Reza Sayah: Iran-based pro-Iranian political analyst Seyed Hosseini says better relations between Washington and Tehran is good for Iraq. But that won’t happen, he says, unless the U.S. changes what Hosseini calls a hostile policy against Iran.

    Seyed Hosseini: Until they don’t correct themselves and their policies in the region, I don’t think there will be a great hope for that. America, for them to be present in the region, they need Iranian help. They must just come to terms and accept the presence of a powerful Iran.

    Reza Sayah: Many Iraqis doubt Tehran and Washington will change their policies. Ali Elami has owned this Baghdad supermarket for five decades. This is where Iraq’s former dictator Saddam Hussein used to stop by for late-night shawarmas, he says. So, Saddam Hussein had shawarma at your place? Elami says the U.S. and Iran are both here for their own interests, not to help Iraq.

    Ali Elami (through Interpreter): The location of Iraq is very strategic. There’s oil, rivers. When Americans came and kicked out Saddam, they didn’t do it for our interests. They did it for oil and money. Iran has expanded here not for our sake. They did it for their own benefit.

    Muthanna Amin Nader: We pay a price as a people in Iraq.

    Reza Sayah: Iraqi politician Muthana Amin Nader is happy to see is defeated in Iraq. But what he fears now is a dangerous proxy war between Iran and the U.S.

    Muthanna Amin Nader: Conflict between Iran and America makes our people as victim. We give a very, very expensive price. It’s time to say enough for bleeding in Iraq and destroying Iraq. They should support us, but also keep away from us.

    Reza Sayah: With so much at stake here for the U.S. and Iran, keeping away from Iraq seems unlikely. How the two adversaries manage that high-stakes competition while they’re here may go a long way in shaping the future of Iraq. For the PBS NewsHour, I’m Reza Sayah in Baghdad.

     

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  • Masoud Dalvand 8:54 pm on December 12, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , Terrorism,   

    Iran Threat to U.S.: Leave Syria or Else!: Video 

    Revolutionary Guard

    IRGC

    TruNews, December 11, 2017 – Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps commander, Brig. Gen. Qassem Soleimani sent a letter, via Russia, demanding every last U.S. soldier leave Syria or else “the doors of hell will open up.”

    According to the Kuwaiti Al Rai Media news website (translated from Arabic), Soleimani told a Russian officer who delivered the message to the U.S.:

    ‘My message to the US military command: when the battle against ISIS (the Islamic State group) will end, no American soldier will be tolerated in Syria. I advise you to leave by your own will or you will be forced to it … You shall face soldiers and forces you have not experienced before in Syria and you will leave the country sooner or later.’

    Soleimani reportedly told the Russian middle-man that U.S. forces in Syria will be “considered as forces of occupation” if they stay, according to the Al Rai report. It concludes that the situation could quickly devolved into a mirror of events in Lebanon in 1983, when hundreds of American Marines were killed in the Islamist bombing of the Marine Barracks in Beirut.

     

     
  • Masoud Dalvand 11:42 am on December 5, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , Iranian People, Terrorism   

    Iran’s Earthquake Victims Suffer As Government Spends Billions On Terrorism — Iran Commentary 

    By Heshmat Alavi

    They say a news event has a three-day lifespan. The regime in Tehran is counting on such a theory to have the international community move on after the recent earthquake that shook western Iran. Each passing day further reveals the scope of this vast catastrophe.

    “More than 1,000 people have lost their lives,” Iranian MP Ahmad Safari said to the official ILNA news agency 72 hours after the quake. “I went to a village where they said they pulled 20 corpses from under the rubble. They were not even counted in the death toll. 70 people died just in one alley of the town of Sarpol-e Zahab. Another 250 were killed in the Mehr housing complex.”

    Experts advised the government of former Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (2005-13) to build 25,000 homes under the Mehr blueprint. Ahmadinejad, however, ordered the construction of 1.5 million such units, raising questions of possible negligence in construction and lack of proper supervision.

    “Just as opposed to the practices of the clerical regime, now is the time to show solidarity. Assisting and saving the victims of the earthquake is a sacred national duty,” she said.

    The incoming statistics of this recent quake are devastating.

    “There are still people stranded in villages where 90 percent of the homes are left destroyed. No official has visited these areas. The locals, along with their children, are forced to sleep the nights in their farm fields without any shelter,” a reported wired by the semi-official ISNA news agency reads.

    Instead of focusing measures to rush aid for the victims, Iran’s regime imposed martial law in Sarpol-e Zahab, the epicenter of the earthquake.

    960x0 (2)

    A picture taken on November 15, 2017 shows an Iranian woman gesturing next to the rubble of her home in Kouik village near to Sarpol-e Zahab, two days after a 7.3-magnitude earthquake struck Iran’s western Kermanshah province near the border with Iraq, leaving hundreds killed and thousands homeless. Iranian authorities scramble to help tens of thousands of people left homeless by a major quake on the border with Iraq that killed more than 400 people as anger mounts among residents at what they see as a slow response. / ATTA KENARE/AFP/Getty Images

    Was such a catastrophe preventable? Is Iran the only country prone to earthquakes?

    Japan has a history of earthquakes and thanks to technological advances we no longer witness skyrocketing number of casualties and damages.

    Australia also experienced a powerful 7.0-magnitude earthquake on Tuesday that resulted in tsunami warnings. No casualties or major damages were reported.

    Preventing quake damage is nothing out of the ordinary or impossible. A truly popular government allocating the necessary manpower, means and budget can do the job. Here is exactly where the problem lies in Iran.

    On August 13th members of the Iran’s parliament unanimously adopted a 16-article bill providing around $600 million to further develop Iran’s ballistic missile program and additionally fund the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC), especially the extraterritorial unit known as the Quds Force.

    Iran’s five military entities enjoy a budget of $13.5 billion for the current Persian calendar year (March 2017 to March 2018), of which $7.4 billion belongs to the IRGC. This is a 24 percent increase from the last calendar year.

    960x0 (1)

    The new Iranian long range missile Khoramshahr (front) is displayed during the annual military parade marking the anniversary of the outbreak of its devastating 1980-1988 war with Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, on September 22,2017 in Tehran. Rouhani vowed that Iran would boost its ballistic missile capabilities despite criticism from the United States and also France. / STR/AFP/Getty Images

    It is worth noting that the Iranian regime has a nearly $7 billion budget deficit, equaling to nearly half of its military budget.

    Proper now would be to evaluate the money sent by the Iranian regime to Lebanon. There is actually no figure of Tehran’s financial support for the Lebanese Hezbollah.

    While recent reports have placed this value at over $800 million, back in 2011 Al Arabiya Farsi shed further light in this regard.

    “Hezbollah used to receive $350 million each year from Iran. In addition to Hezbollah’s own activities, this budget was used to provide for members’ salaries, the families of killed Hezbollah members, various projects in southern Lebanon and Beqaa, and bribing Lebanese political figures to back Hezbollah.”

    One such $400 million construction project in Lebanon, including parkswas paid for completely by Iran. All the while millions in Iran remain under poor living conditions.

    “As long as there is money in Iran, we will have money,” said Hezbollah Secretary General Hassan Nasrallah, making it crystal clear how the terrorist-designated group’s entire budget is bankrolled by Tehran.

    Parallel to Lebanon, Iran is known for its belligerence in SyriaIraqYemen and beyond.

    Deprived of this budget, 40 percent of the Iranian people are living in complete poverty. 13 million homeless in city outskirt slums. 14 million literally cannot pay for their daily meals.

    State-affiliated websites in Iran report nearly 20,000 homes were completely destroyed in the recent quake. Whereas in Japan, simple homes made with a budget of $10,000 each, have proven to be earthquake-resistant.

    If we take into consideration just the abovementioned $600 million, Iran’s government could have provided 60,000 such homes for victims of the past three major quakes across the country.

    This includes 20,000 in Kermanshah province, the site of the recent quake designated as the most powerful in 2017 so far; another 20,000 for the victims of the 2012 East Azerbaijan quake in northeast Iran; and 20,000 more for the victims of the 2003 Bam quake that left tens of thousands of innocent people killed.

    This is all aside from sitting on an ocean of 125 billion barrels of oil, 227 trillion cubic meters of gas and a daily revenue of $200 million from exporting oil.

    The point is the solutions are out there. Iran, however, is ruled by a regime that could care less about its populace. For those sitting in Tehran, this is a recipe for disaster.

    Mohammad Biranvand, another member of Iran’s parliament said, “Do you know that the people now trust athletes and celebrities more than they trust government institutions? All this indicates that the earthquake of distrust will be far more destructive than the recent earthquake.”

    via Iran’s Earthquake Victims Suffer As Government Spends Billions On Terrorism — Iran Commentary

     
  • Masoud Dalvand 11:25 am on November 29, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Crown prince of Saudi Arabia, , , New Hitler, Terrorism   

    Iran Regime’s Khamenei Is Modern Hitler 

    New Hitler

    NCRI Staff

    NCRI – No one should use the term ‘modern-day Hitler’ lightly. Hitler was responsible for one of the worst genocides in the 20th century and when most people compare modern politicians to him, they are trivialising that.

    However, there is one leader to whom that comparison applies without a shadow of a doubt: Ali Khamenei, Supreme Leader of Iran.

    In a recent New York Times interview, Saudi Arabia’s crown prince Mohammad bin Salman not only called the Iranian regime’s top mullah, “the new Hitler of the Middle East” but also warned that, as we saw from former British PM Neville Chamberlain, “appeasement doesn’t work”.

    Prince Mohammad noted that the last thing anyone wants is for Iran to repeat the actions of Nazi Germany across the Middle East.

    The problem is that the Iranian Regime is already repeating history, as many Iranian dissidents, human rights groups, and families of political prisoners have long reported.

    Prince Mohammad comparison of Khamenei to Hitler is not extreme, it’s not shocking, and the most newsworthy thing about it is that some people fail to see the similarities.

    • Dictator hell bent on controlling the world even if it means ruining their country in the meantime? Check.

    • Oppressing and imprisoning religious and ethnic minorities? In Shiite Iran, minorities such as the Baha’i, Kurds, Christians and Sunnis are routinely oppressed.

    • Secret Police to enforce security at home and abroad? This would be the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps and its paramilitary branch, the Quds Force

    • Taking control of other nation states under the pretext of fighting a foreign enemy? For Khamenei, it is the proxy control of Yemen and Syria in order to expel ISIS.

    • Taking control of all news media and turning it into propaganda? Since President Rouhani came to power hundreds of journalists have been imprisoned, tortured and even executed.

    • Able to gain appeasement from the West through a maligned deal aimed at curbing their ability to wage war? This would be the 2015 Iran nuclear deal

    It is now time to confront the mullahs for their destabilizing behaviour, especially now that Iran had threatened to launch ballistic missiles against Europe after receiving criticism from the French President Emmanuel Macron.

    Laura Carnahan wrote: “The irony of Iran’s actions to Hitler’s speeches to blaming its enemies for driving Germany into the ground in the aftermath of World War I is striking and serves as a reminder that repeating the mistakes of the 1930s today will only lead down a path of regional conflict and even more suffering for the Iranian people.”

     
  • Masoud Dalvand 11:58 am on November 27, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , Terrorism   

    Iran ‘proud’ to send its children to fight in Syria! 

    13 year old Iranian child soldier in Syria. A report by Iran state TV broadcast today November 25 about an Iranian 13 year old child soldier sent by Revolutionary Guards to fight on the front lines in Syria.

    Iran ‘proud’ to send its children to fight in Syria. An Iranian television channel on Saturday broadcast a video in which a 13-year-old child soldier speaks about being sent to Syria to fight. In the video, a reporter asks the young soldier his age to which the boy replies “13,” while another gunman next to the child says that he is “the youngest child fighter.” “This child must be in school now and play and not on the war fronts, where adults get killed,” said one Iranian activist. A report by Human Rights Watch called for an investigation into the recruitment of children into Syria by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, calling on the international community and the United Nations to open an investigation into the issue and to add Iran to the annual list of perpetrators of child abuse.

     

     

     
  • Masoud Dalvand 9:57 pm on November 1, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , Terrorism   

    Welcoming New Sanctions Against IRGC Commanders and Affiliates 

    Iran Sanctions

    The Iranian Resistance welcomes sanctions by the US Treasury Department against a number of Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) commanders and affiliates, engaged in suppressing and plundering the Iranian people as well as export of terrorism and proliferation of ballistic missiles. The Iranian Resistance views this as a necessary step in dealing with the clerical regime’s suppressive, belligerent, and terrorist policies and proliferation of ballistic missiles that endanger the peace and tranquility in the region.

    These sanctions should be quickly extended to all the individuals, entities, institutions, and companies affiliated or dealing with the IRGC, as well as to the IRGC’s foreign mercenaries. It is even more imperative that sanctions be imposed on IRGC commanders stationed in 31 provinces throughout Iran, who are responsible for suppressing the population.

    Implementing the law passed by the US Congress regarding sanctions on the IRGC, as well as designating IRGC as a terrorist entity, require adopting measures to expel the IRGC from the region, specifically Syria and Iraq,. These measures are prerequisite to ending the war and bloodshed and establishing peace in the region.

    The Iranian Resistance calls on the European Union to join in sanctioning the IRGC.

    A major part of the Iranian economy is controlled by the IRGC, and therefore deals with the IRGC are tantamount to fueling its belligerence, its terror and suppression machine, the expansion of its nuclear weapons program and the proliferation of ballistic missiles.

    IRGC Brigadier, Gholamreza Jalali, the commander of the regime’s Passive Defense, acknowledged in an interview with the state TV on October 29 that the IRGC’s Khatam-ol-Anbiya Headquarters “carries out many projects such as building dams, power plants, and refineries… Some 5,000 companies are working with the Khatam Headquarters.”

    Secretariat of the National Council of Resistance of Iran
    October 31, 2017

     
  • Masoud Dalvand 10:14 pm on October 30, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , Terrorism   

    Secrets of the 1983 Beirut Bombings: The role of Iran’s IRGC 

    The 1983 double bombing in Beirut, the capital of Lebanon, left 241 American service members, 58 French military personnel and six civilians killed. (Supplied)
    The 1983 double bombing in Beirut, the capital of Lebanon, left 241 American service members, 58 French military personnel and six civilians killed, alongside hundreds of others injured.
    21 years later in 2004 Iran’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) unveiled a “monument” in “honor” of that terrorist attack.
    This “memorial” column, installed in a section dubbed “Martyrs of the Islamic World” in Tehran’s Behesht-e Zahra Cemetery, carried a very vivid message: Iran’s IRGC was behind the 1983 blast targeting the peacekeeping force in Beirut.
    34 years have passed since that attack and today the IRGC has been designated a terrorist organization by the US Treasury Department. Such a measure deserves praise, yet is long overdue.
    On October 23 of that year a suicide bomber drove a water tanker into the US Marines barracks and detonated around 1,000 kilograms of explosives (equal to 15,000 to 21,000 pounds of TNT), transferred with large trucks into buildings where the Multi-National Forces in Lebanon were stationed.
    The United Nations was involved in a broader peacekeeping mission to bring an end to the Lebanese civil wars. The Islamic Jihad, an Iranian offspring terrorist group, claimed responsibility for the attacks.

    BACKGROUND

    In line with its pillar policy of exporting terrorism and warmongering across the Middle East, one of Iran’s first objectives was to launch a central command base for the IRGC and its local mercenaries in Lebanon. These elements were initially dispersed in towns and villages of the Baalbek area in eastern Lebanon near the border Jordan.
    In 1980, coinciding with Tehran paving the grounds to ignite the Iran-Iraq War, then Iranian regime leader Ayatollah Khomeini dispatched former IRGC commander Mohsen Rezaee to Lebanon to blueprint possible terrorist attacks and hostage taking measures in this country, considered Iran’s “strategic depth.”

    (R-L) Mohsen Rezaee, Anis al-Naqqash, Mohamed Salih al-Hosseini and Mohsen Rafighdoust – Beirut, 1980. (Supplied)
    On September 10, 2003, Iran’s state-run Mashreq daily published a photo imaging Rezaee, former IRGC logistics officer Mohsen Rafighdoust, former IRGC foreign relations officer Mohammad Saleh al-Hosseini and Lebanese terrorist Anis al-Naqqash, said to be behind the first assassination attempt targeting former Iranian Prime Minister Shapour Bakhtiar in 1980.
    With support provided by the IRGC and under the command of former defense minister Hossein Dehghan, the Lebanese Hezbollah took over the Sheikh Abdullah Base in early September 1983. This site was the main center of the Lebanese Army in Bekaa Valley, and was later renamed Imam and transformed to become the IRGC’s main command center in Lebanon.
    From this very site the IRGC controlled Hezbollah militia units and directed the Beirut bombings alongside senior Hezbollah commanders, most specifically the known terrorist Imad Mughniyah.
    The orders for the Beirut bombings were first issued by the IRGC to Ali Akbar Mohtashemipour, Iran’s then ambassador to Syria. He then relayed the orders to IRGC units stationed in Beirut under Dehghan’s command.
    The Islamic Jihad organization was in fact a special ops branch. Until its final days in 1992 this entity was jointly commanded by the Lebanese Hezbollah and IRGC.
    Following the Beirut bombings France began aerial attacks in the Bekaa Valley targeting IRGC-linked bases. The US responded to these terrorist attacks by planning raids on the Sheikh Abdullah Base where the IRGC was training Hezbollah militias.
    On July 20th, 1987, Iran’s Resalat daily wrote the Beirut bombings citing Rafiqdoust, “… both the TNT and ideology behind the attacks that sent 400 American officers and soldiers to hell in the U.S. Marines command base in Beirut came from Iran.”

    34 years have passed since that attack and today the IRGC has been designated a terrorist organization by the US Treasury Department. (Supplied)
    On August 14th, 2005, World Net Daily wrote in this regard: “…Two years ago, a US federal court order identified the suicide bomber as Ismail Ascari, an Iranian national.”

    TEHRAN EXPRESSING JOY

    There should be no feeling of positivity in response to terrorist attacks, no matter where in the world. Terrorism is terrorism.
    Yet the Iranian regime follows no such standards.
    The state-run Rasekhoon website posted a piece literally praising the Beirut double attack.
    “…Two massive explosions, six minutes apart, levelled the US Marines command center and the interventionist French forces command base … The heroic reaction… against US and French bases in Beirut delivered a heavy blow to Western powers and forced them to leave Lebanon in a humiliating manner.”

    THE LEGAL WAR

    “A US federal judge has ordered Iran to pay more than $813 million in damages and interest to the families of 241 US soldiers killed in the 1983 bombing of a Marine barracks in Lebanon,” according to Agence France-Presse.
    “After this opinion, this court will have issued over $8.8 billion in judgments against Iran as a result of the 1983 Beirut bombing,” Judge Royce Lamberth, presiding over this case, wrote in the ruling.
    In late April of last year Iran’s state-run Javan daily, said to be affiliated to the IRGC, wrote:
    “In 2003 relatives of the US Marines killed in Lebanon’s terrorist bombings 30 years ago, successfully gained the opinion of a U.S. appeals court to receive compensation from Iran. Four years later, in 2007, a U.S. federal court issued an order demanding this payment be extracted from Iran’s frozen assets.”
    In September 2013 a US federal court in New York presided by Judge Katherine Forrest ruled in favor of the families of the Beirut bombings victims.
    In July 2014 an appeals court in New York turned down a request filed by Iran’s Central Bank and ordered $1.75 billion in compensation from Tehran’s frozen assets be distributed amongst the victims’ families. This ruling was issued by a three-judge panel of the 2nd branch of New York’s federal appeals court.
    That same year Iran’s Central Bank filed for an appeal, arguing this ruling is in violation of US’ obligation according to accords signed back in 1955. With their notion turned down, Iran’s Central Bank referred the case to the US Supreme Court.
    On April 20th, 2016, America’s highest court ordered $2 billion dollars from Iran’s blocked assets to be extracted and used to pay the families of the Beirut bombings victims. Enjoying 6 votes in favor in the face of two against, this order was adopted despite Iran’s Central Bank request for an appeal.

    THE STATUS QUO

    For more than thirty years the curtains have gradually fallen and the true face of Iran’s IRGC, as a source of support for terrorism, has become crystal clear. Rest assured the footprints of this notorious entity will be found in more crimes inside Iran, around the Middle East and across the globe.
    This is further proof of the necessity of strong measures against the IRGC as the epicenter of Iran’s war machine.
    Utter belligerence has been Tehran’s offspring for four long decades. The time has come to say enough is enough.
    The victims of the 1983 Beirut double bombings, and literally the millions of others who have perished due to Iran’s policies, should know their blood was not shed in vein.
     
  • Masoud Dalvand 7:07 am on September 25, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , Terrorism, ,   

    The NCRI Women’s Committee condemns the assassinations of two Syrian activist women in Istanbul 

    The NCRI Women_s Committee condemns the assassinations of

    The Women’s Committee of the National Council of Resistance of Iran condemns the cowardly murder of Orouba Barakat and her daughter, Halla Barakat. The two Syrian activist women were stabbed to death in their apartment in Istanbul.

    The Women’s Committee extends sincere condolences to the Syrian Opposition and particularly to the combatant women of Syria. Many news agencies have attributed the assassinations to the Assad dictatorship.

    Mrs. Orouba Barakat was a veteran figure of the Syrian Opposition who played a serious role in exposing the crimes of Bashar Assad particularly in the regime’s medieval prisons. She had done research on the practice of torture in these prisons. Her daughter, Halla Barakat, was also a Syrian activist and a journalist working with the opposition’s TV, the Orient News. Mrs. Orouba was familiar with the Iranian Resistance and especially respected the PMOI women and their struggle against the religious dictatorship in Iran.

    The Women’s Committee of the National Council of Resistance of Iran

    September 23, 2017

    Source: The Women’s Committee of the National Council of Resistance of Iran website

     
  • Masoud Dalvand 4:37 pm on September 11, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: 9/11, , , September11th, Terrorism   

    Revisiting Iran’s 9/11 connection 

    By Heshmat Alavi Special to Al Arabiya English Monday, 11 September 2017

    16 years have passed since that tragic day, September 11, 2001, when over 3,000 innocent people lost their lives in the “the largest mass casualty terrorist attack in US history.” The course of modern history changed as we know it.For more than 15 of these past years the policy of appeasement has withheld the international community from adopting the will needed to bring all the perpetrators of this hideous crime to justice.

    Iran has a history of fueling foreign crises to avoid responding to its own domestic concerns. 9/11 provided the window of opportunity to derail world attention to other states and buy Tehran crucially needed time.

    Unfortunately, the regime ruling Iran has been the main benefactor of the 9/11 aftermath. As a result of two wars in the Middle East the entire region has been left wide open for Tehran to take advantage of and spread its sinister ideology and sectarianism.

    It is hence necessary to highlight Iran’s role in 9/11 attacks and demand the senior Iranian regime hierarchy involved in blueprinting and implementing this attack to be held accountable before the law.

    Warmongering history

    For the past four decades Iran has been ruled by a clerical regime that is simply incapable of providing the society’s needs and demands. To this end, Tehran has resorted to a policy of exporting the “Islamic Revolution” by meddling in neighboring and distant countries to create havoc.

    History has recorded how Iraq invaded Iranian territories and caused the beginning of the devastating eight-year-long Iran-Iraq War. Several months before Iraq launched its military attack, Ayatollah Khomeini, accused of hijacking Iran’s 1979 revolution, described then Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein as a “hypocrite” and a “threat for the Iraqi people.”

    Khomeini went as far as calling on the Iraqi people to “place their entire efforts behind destroying this dangerous individual” and the Iraqi army to “flee their forts” and to “rise and destroy this corrupt individual, and appoint another individual in his place. We will support you in this regard.”

    Fast forward more than two decades, and again with Iraq in its crosshairs, Iran began what has been described as a very complicated effort to literally deceive the US intelligence community.

    Ahmad Challabi, dubbed as “The Manipulator” by The New Yorker, was Iran’s front man in feeding the US false information regarding Iraq possessing weapons of mass destruction to justify Washington’s 2003 invasion of Iraq. The war ultimately eliminated the main obstacle before Iran’s hidden occupation of Iraq and full blown meddling across the Middle East.

    Looking further west in the region, Iran ordered Bashar Assad in Syria and former Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki to facilitate the escape of thousands of al-Qaeda prisoners. This development, parallel to the ruthless crackdown of the two countries’ Sunni communities, led to the rise of ISIS.

    This entire episode provided Iran the necessary pretext to justify its presence in Iraq and Syria, especially through tens of thousands of proxy forces.

    Iran’s Revolutionary Guard troops march, during a military parade commemorating the start of the Iraq-Iran war 32 years ago, in front of the mausoleum of the late revolutionary leader Ayatollah Khomeini, just outside Tehran, Iran, on Sept. 21, 2012. (AP)

    The 9/11 facts

    bipartisan commission in Washington investigated the 9/11 attacks reported strong evidenceexists showing Iran “facilitated the transit of al-Qaeda members into and out of Afghanistan before 9/11, and that some of these were future 9/11 hijackers.”

    Up to 10 of the 14 hijackers involved in 9/11, and specifically behind obtaining control of the four aircrafts, were allowed passage through Iran from October 2000 to February 2001. Reports indicate Iran has a history of ordering certain instructions to not harass transiting al-Qaeda members.

    Such documents also show Iran’s offspring, the Lebanese Hezbollah, trained alongside al-Qaeda members during the 1990s, leading to the former possibly adopting the latter’s suicide bombing tactics.

    “…al-Qaeda may have collaborated with Hezbollah and its Iranian sponsors in the 1996 bombing of the Khobar Towers, a key American military barracks in Saudi Arabia. Previously, the attack had been attributed only to Hezbollah, with Iranian support,” according to a TIME report.

    Evidence shows that five years later, “Iran and Lebanese Shiite group Hezbollah being involved ‘firsthand’ in the 9/11 terrorist attacks,” an Al Arabiya feature said.

    Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei with Revolutionary Guard commander Mohammad Ali Jafari on May 20, 2015. (Office of the Iranian Supreme Leader via AP, File)

    Facilitation and execution

    In early 2016, Judge George Daniels of New York “condemned Iran for facilitating the execution of the terrorist attacks that hit both New York and Washington.” This lawsuit provided an in-depth look into nearly 300 cases of Iran’s involvement in funding terrorism and collaborating with terror organizations, including al-Qaeda.

    “The trial revealed that bin Laden, current leader of al-Qaeda Ayman al-Zawahiri, Hezbollah’s Imad Mughniyeh – assassinated in 2008 – and other Iranian attaches had met in Sudan to establish an alliance supporting terrorism,” the piece adds.

    To those who may argue Shiite Iran would never support a Sunni al-Qaeda, it is hardly unprecedented to find such backing by Tehran for non-Shiite terror groups. Sunni terrorists that share Iran’s goals, such as Hamas and Islamic Jihad, alongside those who target US interests, have for long enjoyed Iran’s support.

    As mentioned above, “Iran also played an important role in supporting al-Qaeda in Iraq, the progenitor of ISIS. As Michael Weiss and Hassan Hassan noted in their 2015 book ‘ISIS: Insider the Army of Terror,’ AQI head Abu Musab al-Zarqawi was ‘based in Iran and northern Iraq’ for ‘about a year’ after fleeing Afghanistan following the arrival of US-led coalition forces in Operation Enduring Freedom,” according to The Washington Times.

    As cited earlier, Iran also stands accused of having “foreknowledge of the 9/11 attacks,” according to a 2011 court filing quoting two Iranian intelligence service defectors. These individuals were “in positions that gave them access to sensitive information regarding Iran’s state sponsorship of terrorism,” the piece continues.

    The court went on to demand damages due to Iran’s “direct support for, and sponsorship of, the most deadly act of terrorism in American history,” according to The New York Times. The suit also contends that in addition to facilitating the 9/11 hijackers training and travel, Iran and Hezbollah played an important role in the escaping of numerous al-Qaeda operatives by providing safe haven inside Iran.

    “… 9/11 depended upon Iranian assistance to Al Qaeda in acquiring clean passports and visas to enter the United States,” the NYT cited Thomas E. Mellon Jr., a former lawyer for the 9/11 victims’ families, saying by quoting ten specialists working on Iran and terrorism.

    “I am convinced that our evidence is absolutely real—that Iran was a participant in the preparations for 9/11,” Mellon said in another interview with The Daily Beast.

    “Iran has not lived up to the spirit of the agreement, and they have to do that,” Trump said. (AFP)

    Lack of will

    Iran would have every interest in facilitating the 9/11 attacks to divert international attention onto its rivals, while providing the opportunity for its forces and proxies to take full advantage of rendering mayhem across the region. A glance of the current status in Iraq, Syria, Yemen and Lebanon proves this point.

    For too long investigations have failed to shed the necessary light into Iran’s role into the 9/11 attacks. Even the Commission, accused of never properly grappling the question of Iran’s knowledge prior to 9/11, nearly neglected very important facts gathered by the US National Security Agency about Tehran’s deep involvement in this regard.

    The Commission “failed to delve into the files of the National Security Agency, where the Iran intelligence was waiting to be discovered, until the final stages of the commission’s inquiry,” according to Philip Shenon’s The Daily Beast article.

    “… my suspicions are that the Iranians were probably much more involved than we are led to believe,” Middle East political scientist Dr. Joseph A. Kéchichian said to Al Arabiya.

    Staffers formerly working for the 9/11 commission have complained that much of the remaining NSA’s pre-9/11 terrorism database has gone un-reviewed to this very day. This goes as far as suggesting a long slate of 9/11 secrets may have remained hidden for the past 16 years. Do we not owe more to the 9/11 victims and their families?

    There is promise seen in the new US administration as it continues to turn up the heat on Iran. Yet until a lack of will prevents the launching of a new genuine inquiry into Iran’s involvement in the 9/11 attacks, it is up to us writers and journalists to dig deep and expose Tehran’s relations with terror groups across the globe, especially those involved in the horrific acts that changed our world 16 years ago today.

    All this becomes ever so necessary as Tehran covertly pursues its nuclear weapons drive and overtly seeks payload delivery capability through ballistic missiles. We must learn from the mistakes made in regards to North Korea and go the limits to prevent a rogue regime such as Iran from going down the same path.

    Originally published in english.alarabiya

     
  • Masoud Dalvand 8:32 pm on August 21, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , Terrorism   

    ANALYSIS: Is this the beginning of a new era for Iraq without Iran? 

    The military phase of the fight against ISIS is winding down after the liberation of Mosul, and the battle for the nearby town of Tal Afar is predicted to end soon. This has provided an opportunity for Iraq to begin distancing itself from the influence gained by Iran following the disastrous 2003 war, and returning to its […]

    via ANALYSIS: Is this the beginning of a new era for Iraq without Iran? — Iran Commentary

     
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