America and the good psychopaths

Basij boys-thumb-470x352-3138

By Caroline Glick:

In his speech on Tuesday before the UN General Assembly, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu tried to get the Americans to stop their collective swooning at the sight of an Iranian president who smiled in their general direction.

“Ladies and gentlemen,” the premier warned, “I wish I could believe [President Hassan] Rouhani, but I don’t because facts are stubborn things. And the facts are that Iran’s savage record flatly contradicts Rouhani’s soothing rhetoric.”

He might have saved his breath. The Americans weren’t interested.

Two days after Netanyahu’s speech, US Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel issued a rejoinder to Netanyahu. “I have never believed that foreign policy is a zero-sum game,” Hagel said.

Well, maybe he hasn’t. But the Iranians have.

And they still do view diplomacy – as all their dealings with their sworn enemies – as a zerosum game.

As a curtain raiser for Rouhani’s visit, veteran New York Times war correspondent Dexter Filkins wrote a long profile of Iran’s real strongman for The New Yorker. Qassem Suleimani is the head of the Revolutionary Guard Corps. It is the most powerful organ of the Iranian regime, and Suleimani is Iranian dictator Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s closest confidante and adviser.

Rouhani doesn’t hold a candle to Suleimani.

Filkin’s profile is detailed, but deeply deceptive.

The clear sense he wishes to impart on his readers is that Suleimani is a storied war veteran and a pragmatist. He is an Iranian patriot who cares about his soldiers. He’s been willing to cut deals with the Americans in the past when he believed it served Iran’s interests. And given Suleimani’s record, it is reasonable to assume that Rouhani – who is far more moderate than he – is in a position to make a deal and will make one.

The problem with Filkin’s portrayal of Suleimani as a pragmatist, and a commander who cares about the lives of his soldiers – and so, presumably cares about the lives of Iranians – is that it is belied by the stories Filkins reported in the article.

Filkins describes at length how Suleimani came of age as a Revolutionary Guard division commander during the Iran-Iraq War from 1980 to 1988, and how that war made him the complicated, but ultimately reasonable, (indeed parts of the profile are downright endearing), pragmatist he is today.

As the commander of the Revolutionary Guards, Suleimani commands the Syrian military and the foreign forces from Iran, Hezbollah and Iraq that have been deployed to Syria to keep Basher Assad in power.

Filkins quotes an Iraqi politician who claimed that in a conversation with Suleimani last year that the Iranian called the Syrian military “worthless.”

He then went on to say, “Give me one brigade of the Basij, and I could conquer the whole country.”

Filkins notes that it was the Basij that crushed the anti-Islamist Green Revolution in Iran in 2009. But for a man whose formative experience was serving as a Revolutionary Guards commander in the Iran-Iraq War, Suleimani’s view of the Basij as a war-fighting unit owes to what it did in its glory days, in that war, not on the streets of Tehran in 2009.

As Matthias Kuntzel reported in 2006, the Revolutionary Guards formed the Basij during the Iran-Iraq War to serve as cannon fodder. Basij units were made up of boys as young as 12.

They were given light doses of military training and heavy doses of indoctrination in which they were brainwashed to reject life and martyr themselves for the revolution.

As these children were being recruited from Iran’s poorest villages, Ayatollah Khomeini purchased a half million small plastic keys from Taiwan.

They were given to the boys before they were sent to battle and told that they were the keys to paradise. The children were then sent into minefields to die and deployed as human waves in frontal assaults against superior Iraqi forces.

By the end of the war some 100,000 of these young boys became the child sacrifices of the regime.

Read more at Jeruslaem Post

Related articles

Iran’s Terror Cells in Syria Exposed

iran mapBY RYAN MAURO:

The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), an Iranian opposition group that has previously exposed top-secret Iranian nuclear sites, has provided the Clarion Project with precise details of Iran’s operations to assist Syrian dictator Bashar Assad. The information includes a photo of an alleged base in Iran where training is taking place.

MEK (the Mujahideen-e-Khalq resistance group, which is part of the NCRI ) says that the following data was gathered from dozens of sources inside the Iranian regime and accumulated by the MEK. This includes informants inside the Revolutionary Guards, Defense Ministry and the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the Armed Forces.

The training of operatives to fight in Syria is taking place northeast of Tehran at a Revolutionary Guards base called Saheb al-Zaman, also known as the 27th Shaheed Pazouki Base. The base is located in the southeast part of Sorkheh Hesar Park.

The NCRI tells the Clarion Project that the majority of trainees at the above base are Iraqis, specifically those belonging to Asa’ib Ahl al-Haq and Kataeb-Hezbollah. Approximately 90% of Asa’ib’s fighters have been sent to Syria since March. Iran is also recruiting fighters from Yemen, where it has a relationship with the Houthi rebels.

The intelligence details how the operation is run. The Iraqi Shiiteterrorists are dispatched by a man named “Yousef” who oversees the group’s training. He speaks to each fighter sent to Syria and gives them $1,300 each to help take care of their families. The recruits are sent to an Asai’b Ahl-Haq base in Basra and then to the Shalamceh border region. The next destination is Ahvaz in Khuzestan Province.

Once in Iran, the terrorists are separated into groups of between 60 and 80 operatives and sent to Qom for pilgrimage. Abu Fatema, a former commander of the Iraqi “Special Groups” that fought U.S. forces runs a base in Qom that is visited by the recruits. The Iraqis then visit the grave of Ayatollah Khomeini and then training begins. The recruits are provided with military attire and arms.

Read more at The Clarion Project

Iran making anthrax for weapons

by Reza Kahlili

Russian scientists have helped Iran master four microbial agents for bombs, which the Islamic regime has used to arm 37 launch-ready missiles so far, sources have revealed.

The secret work is being done at a plant named Shahid Bahonar on a mountaintop by the city of Marzanabad off the mountainous Chalus road to the Iranian Caspian Sea.

ShahidBahonarOverview2012

The plant, under the supervision of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, is headed by Dr. Esmaeil Namazi, who oversees 28 Iranian and 12 Russian scientists, according to a source in the Revolutionary Guards intelligence division with access to the site.

There are several underground facilities at two levels with elevators reaching the lower level some 40 feet underground and where more than 100 personnel work on the microbial bomb project, the source said.

*************

The arming of warheads with microbial agents takes place at this site and, according to the source, those warheads, which do not create an explosion but spray a large area, can kill tens of thousands of people quickly.

Clare M. Lopez, a senior fellow at RadicalIslam.org and the Center for Security Policy, said that, “From research published by Dr. Jill Dekker of the Center for Nonproliferation Studies, Dr. Anthony Cordesman at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and others, we know that Iran, although a signatory to the Biological Weapons Convention, is reported to have weaponized anthrax, mycotoxins and smallpox. Iran possesses a sophisticated technological infrastructure, including university laboratories, within which it seeks to conceal its (biological weapons) program.

“The use or even threat of use of biological weapons by Iran – whether a bacterium like anthrax, a virus like Venezuelan Equine Encephalitis or a mycotoxin like yellow rain – would cross a red line, certainly for Israel and for the international community as well,” Lopez said. “Iran must know that even the threatened deployment of such biological weapons would invite an overwhelming military response that could devastate the country.”

As reported in WND on Dec. 4, the Islamic regime has 170 ballistic missiles pointed at Tel Aviv alone, some armed with biological warheads. A knowledgeable Middle East security official from another country, who did not want to be named, verified knowledge of Iranian ballistic missiles armed with biological weapons, stating that 500 ballistic missiles are pointed at Israel and that also several other countries are on the regime’s target list.

Read more at Radical Islam

Reza Kahlili is a pseudonym for a former CIA operative in Iran’s Revolutionary Guard and author of the award-winning book, A Time to Betray. He is a senior fellow with EMPact America, a member of the Task Force on National and Homeland Security, an advisory board member of the Foundation for Democracy in Iran and teaches at the U.S. Department of Defense’s Joint Counterintelligence Training Academy (JCITA).

 

 

Iranians prepare terror campaign inside U.S.

RevGuards-340x168by Michael Carl

Iran’s Revolutionary Guard is alive and well in the U.S. and the country’s law enforcement officials ignore them at their peril, according to former U. S. Air Force officer Steven O’Hern.

O’Hern says that the Revolutionary Guard, long an influential factor in the radical Islamic regime in Iran, does most of its surveillance and intelligence gathering through its proxy force, Hezbollah, considered by many to be a terror group.

“In the United States, the Revolutionary Guard uses more than one approach. Hezbollah operatives and sympathizers are present in large numbers in many parts of the United States and actively conduct reconnaissance missions that develop information, photographs, and diagrams of federal buildings, and infrastructure targets,” O’Hern said.

“Those targets include such things as water utilities or electrical substations, and other potential targets to give the Guard the ability to quickly order a terrorist strike in our homeland,” O’Hern said.

He explains that the Revolutionary Guard is working through Shi’a mosques around the United States as well as the nation’s Lebanese immigrant communities.

WND previously reported that a former Iranian official who has knowledge of Iran’s terror network estimated there are more than 40,000 of the regime’s security, intelligence and propaganda forces in the West, largely in friendly South American nations.

And WND has reported that Muslims are using mosques, including some in the United States, as terror command centers.

It is the Guards’ intelligence office that runs financing, recruiting and other strategies through Islamic centers and mosques, including some in New York and Ohio.

And as early as several months ago, the Guard threatened to bring its war to the shores of the United States.

O’Hern, who has written “Iran’s Revolutionary Guard,” about the issue, said the primary mission of the Iran Revolutionary Guard and its Hezbollah proxy is to weaken the U. S. national security.

“In the United States, the Revolutionary Guard and Hezbollah have a long-term mission of gathering intelligence on homeland targets and maintaining the capability to deliver multiple terrorist attacks if the IRGC chooses to do so,” O’Hern said. “I say ‘maintain’ because the Guard has already developed it.”

He said attacks could be ordered in retaliation if Iran’s nuclear program is hit, or, “Sleeper cells could even be ordered into action if economic sanctions were so successful that the regime was in danger.”

“Attacks against the U.S. homeland are only one place where the IRGC can strike – it also can attack U.S. troops and facilities in Afghanistan, Africa, Europe, all of which are closer,” O’Hern said.

O’Hern’s findings are affirmed by the analysis of a former Defense Department analyst who has asked not to be named for security reasons. The analyst points to the major Arab-American communities in the major cities, especially in Dearborn, Mich., and the San Francisco Bay area.

“It is my sense that IRGC will rely more on Hezbollah in the U.S. than having their own operatives here. The reason for that is Hezbollah presence is primarily through the concentration of the Arab-American communities, mainly Lebanese, throughout the U.S., such as in Michigan and elsewhere,” the source said.

Former FBI counterterrorism officer and Islam analyst John Guandolo agrees that the Revolutionary Guard has a presence in the United States, and it operates through the major Shi’a communities.

“This is the Iranian government’s military activity in the U.S,” he said.

Guandolo, who established  Guandolo and Associates in 2012, says that when it comes to working to undermine non-Muslim countries, Shi’a and Sunni Muslims work together.

“We do know the Sunni and Shi’a groups that are hostile to the United States are working together. In Lebanon, Iraq, and other places we see Hezbollah, by Iran, and Hamas with al-Qaida, working together on the ground,” Guandolo said.

“In the United States, the largest Muslim Brotherhood organization, the Islamic Society of North America, put forth the ISNA Code of Honor which says Sunni Muslims will not challenge other Muslims, the Shi’a, on their Takfiri, their legitimacy,” Guandolo said.

“All Muslims are focused on a similar goal. In other words, the Muslim world is working towards one goal right now and they have written agreements and are working on the ground around the world together,” Guandolo said, “So, yes, Hamas, CAIR works with Hezbollah, which is basically the IRGC.”

The former Defense Department analyst says the Revolutionary Guard operates the same way worldwide.

“That is similar in Africa and Latin America. Like Iran, Hezbollah is mainly Shi’a, although it will have some Sunnis and even some Christian Lebanese who are sympathetic here,” the former Defense Department analyst said.

“There is a major Hezbollah contingent, for example, in Canada. It would be much easier for Iran to work through them and the extensive Lebanese communities throughout the U.S. than to seek to establish a major independent presence,” the Defense Department analyst said.

Still, he said, it’s possible that the IRGC itself may have operational units working in the United States.

“However, I don’t doubt that IRGC may have some operatives here acting as liaison with the Hezbollah elements here. In Lebanon, the IRGC presence is more open with representatives working out of the Iranian embassy in Beirut,” the Defense Department analyst said.

Read the rest at WND

What Lies Behind Iran’s Nuclear Threat: An interview with Ex-CIA Agent Reza Kahlili

By Jerry Gordon at New English Review:

What follows is a portion of our interview with Reza Kahlili providing insights into the overarching Mahdist doctrine of the Islamic regime’s Supreme Leader and others. The dangers of Iran’s nuclear and WMD programs to Israel and America support and funding of terrorist proxies in the Middle East, Latin America and even cells in America are discussed. Kahlili reveals the deepening hatred of many of Iran’s people to both the regime and its Shiite Mahdist doctrine seeking to create worldwide chaos to foster the re-appearance of 12th Imam Mahdi. Iran’s Supreme Leader under this doctrine would hand the flag to Imam Mahdi to lead the conquest and conversion of the world’s infidels to Islam. Kahlili also speaks about the repercussions of any Israeli pre-emptive attack and the necessity for the US and the West to support regime change in his native Iran. Regime change is earnestly desired by many people in Iran who despise its rulers and Islamic doctrine for their lack of basic freedoms and reduced economic status. Surprisingly as we have found from recent debriefings of travelers to Iran, many people still harbor respect for America and Israel, notwithstanding the failure of the Obama Administration to come to their aid during the uprisings following the June 2009 fraudulent Presidential elections.

You may listen to the entire interview with Kahlili, here.

Jerry Gordon:  Reza Kahlili, thank you for taking time out for this timely interview.

Reza Kahlili:  Thank you for inviting me.

Gordon:  You have written extensively on the Mahdist Twelver Islamic doctrine of Iran’s form of Shiism. Could you tell us what that doctrine is and how it guides the actions of the Supreme Leader, the President and his cabinet and leadership of the Revolutionary Guard Corps?

Kahlili:  You see this is embedded within the philosophy on which they act. The Shiites believe that in the end of time Imam Mahdi, the 12th Imam, will reappear and kill all the infidels and raise the flag of Islam in all four corners of the world. This is taught by the clerics, they believe in it and they promote this ideology because in their eyes it’s the ultimate justification where Islam conquers the world and everybody is a Muslim. In every conversation they have, their statements, their actions are representative of that ideology. The majority of the Iranians don’t believe in this. They don’t even see themselves as Muslims. They see themselves as Persians. Even if they respected Islam before the revolution due to cultural customs, now they openly despise Islam. Despise the religion. Despise the clerics and what they said within the Iranian community now cannot be said in America and Europe. There would be ramifications if somebody talked about Islam the way the Iranian people do inside. So we are talking about the minority who are the true believers in Islam and take everything literally from the Quran and martyrdom is welcomed with open arms. They believe that the Islamic regime was put in place by Allah and that the end of days are at hand and their studies of the Hadiths, which are centuries old sayings by prophet Mohammed and his descendants, are representative of what is going to taking shape in the world. They are very excited with what’s happening in the Middle East because they believe these are signs spoken of centuries ago that the end of times is near. The triggers are needed to create that environment for Imam Mahdi to come. Destroying Israel would automatically trigger the coming per the Hadith and in their mind create chaos, havoc, lawlessness, where wars  take place. One third of the world population would die due to wars, another third to hunger and the rest live in lawlessness. This theology drives their actions and policies. That is what I’ve been trying to raise awareness among the public. This is serious. You have to look at the Haghani school and other seminaries in the city of Qom which the founder Ayatollah Mesbah Yazdi and the Ayatollah Jannati, the powerful chairman of the Guardian Council have established, they promote this idea. Every minister of intelligence has been associated with the Haghani School and they control almost all of the security institutions in the Iranian government. This is a dangerous element that believes they have a mission to create the environment for the coming of the Imam Mahdi. Ayatollah Khomeini, the founder of the Islamic Revolution said it himself. He had three goals for the revolution. One was to topple the Shah and the Monarchy, two was to establish an Islamic state and three was to pass the flag of Islam to Imam Mahdi. It was said that within the circles of the top officials in Iran that Ayatollah Khamenei is the one who is going to pass the flag of Islam to Imam Mahdi so they truly believe in this.

Gordon:  What are the relations between the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei, the Revolutionary Guard, its Qod Force and the Basij and their respective roles in the Islamic Republic’s Domestic and External Terrorism Programs?

Kahlili:  The Revolutionary Guards and the Basij and all of the military and security forces are under the control of the Supreme Leader’s office. There cannot be any action done without the approval of the Supreme Leader. The Supreme Leader has the authority to change any commander at any time as Khamenei has done several times. The Revolutionary Guards though, have great influence in the Iranian economy, a big military force in Iran and have an international operation. Yet, they are under the control of the Supreme Leader and the Supreme Leader can change commanders at any time. There is a unit within the Revolutionary Guards called Hefazat Etellaat, protection of intelligence. The commander of that unit is chosen by the Supreme Leader and reports directly to his office. The unit acts independent of the Guards command like the SS within the Nazis. This unit is present in every base, in every building and they report directly to the Supreme Leader’s office. Their intention is to have tight control, even over the Revolutionary Guards. I would say every act in Iran right now is an act that has been approved by the Supreme Leader and his office. Even the media outlets. Not a word can be printed without the approval of the security forces.

Gordon:  Could you describe for us the range of external activities of the Qod Force in conducting covert operations in the Middle East and globally?

Kahlili:  The Qod Force’s major operation is to collaborate with terrorist proxies, arm them, transfer explosives, cash, and fund them. They run a drug program and counterfeiting operation. They export drugs to create increased unaccounted funds for the Qod Force’s activities and counterfeiting to destabilize the Western countries by printing and circulating U.S. bonds and dollars. Now they have a grand project called, “Time for the Collapse” in which according to this plan they intend to destabilize the West through their terrorist campaign, money laundering and drug trafficking. They have many connections in Europe, Latin America and Africa and other areas where they collaborate with Hezbollah and drug cartels. The collaboration with drug cartels is directed at gaining greater access via infiltration such as is happening in Mexico and from there into the U.S. They have a very complex operation at the center of which is terrorism and destabilization of the West. They have many cells along with Hezbollah here in the U.S. who are ready to commit terrorist acts should there be a confrontation between U.S. and Iran. They also collaborate with many other governments including Venezuela and have established numerous entities in that country. These are front companies that host explosive labs and terror cells. From Venezuela they expand into Latin America, Mexico and the U.S.

Read it all

Iran Courts Latin America

by Ilan Berman

Middle East Quarterly
Summer 2012, pp. 63-69 (view PDF)

In October 2011, U.S. attorney general Eric Holder and FBI director Robert Mueller revealed the thwarting of an elaborate plot by elements in Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to Washington at a posh D.C. eatery, utilizing members of the Los Zetas Mexican drug cartel.[1]

Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (left) hosted an Iftar (fast breaking) ceremony on Ramadan in Tehran, September 3, 2009, which was attended by Bolivian president Evo Morales (right) during a two-day official visit. Tehran is now believed to be extracting uranium from as many as eleven different sites in Bolivia close to the country’s industrial capital of Santa Cruz.

The foiled terrorist plot, with its Latin American connections, focused new attention on what had until then been a largely overlooked political phenomenon: the intrusion of the Islamic Republic of Iran into the Western Hemisphere. An examination of Tehran’s behavioral pattern in the region over the past several years reveals four distinct strategic objectives: loosening the U.S.-led international noose to prevent it from building nuclear weapons; obtaining vital resources for its nuclear project; creating informal networks for influence projection and sanctions evasion; and establishing a terror infrastructure that could target the U.S. homeland.

Building Western Hemisphere Alliances

Outreach to Latin America is seen by the Iranian regime first and foremost as a means to lessen its deepening international isolation. Since 2003, when its previously clandestine nuclear program became a pressing international issue, Tehran has sought to mitigate the mounting political and economic restrictions levied against it by the United States and its allies through intensified diplomatic outreach abroad.

Due to its favorable geopolitical climate—typified by vast ungoverned areas and widespread anti-Americanism—Latin America has become an important focus of this effort. Over the past decade, the regime has nearly doubled the number of embassies in the region (from six in 2005 to ten in 2010) and has devoted considerable energy to forging economic bonds with sympathetic regional governments.[2]

Far and away the most prominent such partnership has been with Venezuela. Since Hugo Chavez became president in 1999, alignment with Tehran has emerged as a cardinal tenet of Caracas’s foreign policy. The subsequent election of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to the Iranian presidency in 2005 kicked cooperation into high gear with dramatic results. Today, the two countries enjoy an extensive and vibrant strategic partnership. Venezuela has emerged as an important source of material assistance for Tehran’s sprawling nuclear program as well as a vocal diplomatic backer of its right to atomic power.[3] The Chavez regime also has become a safe haven and source of financial support for Hezbollah, Iran’s most powerful terrorist proxy.[4] In turn, Tehran’s feared Revolutionary Guard has become involved in training Venezuela’s secret services and police.[5] Economic contacts between Caracas and Tehran likewise have exploded—expanding from virtually nil in the early 2000s to more than $20 billion in total trade and cooperation agreements today.[6]

Just as significantly, Venezuela has served as Iran’s gateway for further economic and diplomatic expansion into the region. Aided by its partnership with Caracas and bolstered by a shared anti-American outlook, Tehran has succeeded in forging significant strategic, economic, and political links with the regime of Evo Morales in Bolivia and Rafael Correa in Ecuador. Even Iran’s relations with Argentina, where Iranian-supported terrorists carried out major bombings in 1992 and 1994, have improved in recent times, as the government of President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner has hewed a more conciliatory line toward Tehran.[7]

It would be a mistake, however, to view these contacts as simply pragmatic—or strictly defensive. The Iranian regime’s sustained systematic outreach to regional states suggests that it sees the Western Hemisphere as a crucial strategic theater for expanding its own influence and reducing that of the United States. Indeed, a 2009 dossier prepared by Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs noted that “since Ahmadinejad’s rise to power, Tehran has been promoting an aggressive policy aimed at bolstering its ties with Latin American countries with the declared goal of ‘bringing America to its knees.'”[8] This view is increasingly shared by the U.S. military: In its 2010 report on Iranian military power, the Office of the Secretary of Defense noted that “Iran seeks to increase its stature by countering U.S. influence and expanding ties with regional actors” in Latin America.[9]

To this end, Tehran is ramping up its strategic messaging to the region. In late January, on the heels of Ahmadinejad’s very public four-country tour of Latin America, the Iranian regime formally launched HispanTV, a Spanish-language analogue to its English-language Press TV channel.[10] The television outlet has been depicted by Ahmadinejad as part of his government’s efforts to “limit the ground for supremacy of dominance seekers”—a thinly-veiled reference to U.S. influence in the Western Hemisphere.[11]

As Ahmadinejad’s statement indicates, Tehran is pursuing a strategy that promotes its own ideology and influence in Latin America at Washington’s expense. In this endeavor, it has been greatly aided by Chavez, who himself has worked diligently to diminish U.S. political and economic presence in the region under the banner of a new “Bolivarian” revolution.

Read more

Iran Tests Missiles After EU Oil Move

Agence France-Presse/Getty Images
Revolutionary Guards on Monday mark 24 years since the U.S. Navy shot down an Iranian passenger jet, killing 290 people, during the Iran-Iraq war.

By FARNAZ FASSIHI

BEIRUT—Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps launched several days of drills Monday to test missiles capable of hitting targets as far away as Israel, one day after the European Union put into effect its planned embargo against Iranian oil.

The three days of war games in the north-central desert area of Semnan province, dubbed the Great Prophet 7, were reported by official news agencies. They are aimed at testing the precision and efficiency of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps’ warheads and missile system, the reports said.

Iran routinely conducts military drills. The continuing crisis in Syria, Iran’s closest ally in the Arab world, and the near-failed nuclear talks with the West could potentially make Iran vulnerable for a military attack.

A new round of technical meetings is scheduled in Turkey this week between Iran and six counterparties who are aiming to curb what they say are Iranian steps toward building nuclear weapons. But there is little expectation of a breakthrough between Iran and the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany, or P5+1. During the last rounds of talks in Moscow in June, both sides acknowledged a large gap between their visions for a possible deal. Iran contends its nuclear program is for peaceful energy purposes.

Both Israel and the U.S. have said a military option is on the table.

In this week’s drills, dozens of domestic ballistic missiles will be fired at 100 land and sea targets modeled after foreign bases belonging to “extra regional powers,” official media reports said. Bomber drones and aircrafts will also be used, reports said.

Gen. Amir Ali Hajizadeh, commander of the Revolutionary Guards’ airspace unit, said Monday that Iran wouldn’t “sit idly” as the U.S. and Europe built a missile-defense shield program that could target Iran, according to IRNA, the official news agency. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization is pursuing plans for a Europe-based shield that would guard against Iranian missiles.

Iran would unveil a new ballistic missile, called Arm, which Gen. Hajizadeh said has the capacity to detect and hit radar bases. Arm is capable of hitting NATO targets in Turkey, enemy ships in the Persian Gulf and Israel’s Iron Dome missile-defense system, he said.

Gen. Hajizadeh also said the Revolutionary Guards’ electronic experts had successfully decoded all the classified information in the U.S. RQ-170 drone that went down inside Iran in December. Iran was currently using this intelligence and had begun building a drone modeled after its American counterpart, he said.

The U.S. Central Intelligence Agency declined to comment.

Read more at WSJ

Iran Boasts: War Inevitable

by: Reza Kahlili

Just days after the breakdown of talks with the West over Iran’s nuclear program, the deputy chief commander of the Revolutionary Guards announced that there soon will be war – and that Allah will ensure his forces are victorious.

The last round of talks between Iran and the P5+1 (the United States, Britain, France, China, Russia and Germany) ended in Moscow last week without any agreement on Iran’s illicit nuclear program.

Gen. Hossein Salami, in a televised interview, boasted that, “Iran has complete control of all the enemy’s interests around the world and is on a path to reach equivalency with world powers.” The commander emphasized that Iran’s nuclear program is irreversible, the Islamic Republic News Agency reported.

Salami said war is inevitable, and the Iranian forces are ready.

“The current sanctions will only help Iran with its progress, and the Iranian ballistic missiles can target the enemy’s moving carriers with 100 percent accuracy,” he warned the West. “The Guards’ operational plan includes a radius of deterrence in the region in which all interests of the enemy have been identified, and in case of war, those interests will be attacked.”

Guards’ commanders have stated previously that all U.S. bases in the region are targeted with missiles and will be attacked should America strike Iran.

Salami said Iranian ballistic missiles can travel at several times the speed of sound and cannot easily be tracked and destroyed. “Our defense inventory is so great that at times our brothers in the Guards face limitations with space.”

The Revolutionary Guards have more than 1,000 ballistic missiles capable of reaching all U.S. bases in the region, all of Israel and some capitals in Europe. In collaboration with China and North Korea, they are also working on intercontinental ballistic missiles.

Salami said the Guards are on high alert, adding, “Our forces in relation to our internal security will complete their mission with all of their capability.”

In 2009, millions of Iranians took to the street demanding regime change, but ultimately the uprising was cruelly suppressed and many Iranians were tortured and executed. According to statistics from the Islamic regime’s Justice Department, all Iranian prisons are overflowing and there is a need for more prisons. As reported by Iranian officials, last year alone more than 600 people were executed, including women.

Salami repeated that the Guards are ready for war, which is close, and though it will be very difficult, “We have faith in Allah.”

Reza Kahlili is a pseudonym for a former CIA operative in Iran’s Revolutionary Guard and author of the award-winning book, A Time to Betray. He is a senior fellow with EMPact America, a member of the Task Force on National and Homeland Security, an advisory board member of the Foundation for Democracy in Iran and teaches at the U.S. Department of Defense’s Joint Counterintelligence Training Academy (JCITA).