The twin pillars of the Iranian regime’s military future lies within the Revolutionary Guard Corps which puts boots on the ground to fight its battles and the development of intercontinental ballistic missiles capable of carrying out its biggest threats of global destruction.
They represent the center of power within the Iranian regime since without the IRGC to enforce its’ will, the mullahs in Tehran would be turned out like beggars in the streets by an oppressed Iranian people, while the threat of ballistic missiles hangs like a dagger over Europe and neighboring Arab countries.
It is no surprise then to see the Iran lobby going all out in pushing silly arguments in support of the IRGC and the regime’s missiles as evidenced by two pieces of fiction from the National Iranian American Council.
In one piece authored by Tyler Cullis and appearing in Foreign Affairs, the Iran lobby argues vehemently against designating the IRGC a “foreign terrorist organization, although many of its leaders and subsidiary commercial entities it controls have already been targeted for sanctions by the U.S. and other government for supporting terrorism.
Cullis argues that designating the IRGC would put “U.S. forces in Iraq” in danger and undermine the nuclear agreement reached with Iran, but Cullis argues against his own position when he readily admits that the IRGC is already heavily sanctioned because of its “Iran’s ballistic missile program, its human rights abuses around Iran’s June 2009 presidential election and its disruption and monitoring of Iranian citizens’ communications.”
He also calls any further sanctions a duplicate of current U.S. sanctions so why does he argue against this effort?
Because he knows, as does the rest of the Iran lobby, that designation of the IRGC as an organizational whole is vastly different that current sanctions which only target individuals within the IRGC and some entities. A designation of the whole effectively targets all of the criminal enterprises the IRGC is involved with that siphon monies away from the Iranian people and economy and directly into the coffers of the regime and the pocketbooks of the elites.
Cullis makes the same claim the Iran lobby has made over and over again which is that anything and everything needs to be done to preserve a badly flawed nuclear deal; including treating the chief sponsor of terrorism in Iran with kid gloves.
Cullis makes the absurd claim that Shiite militias controlled by the IRGC—which have been responsible for the deaths and attacks on American service personnel in Iraq through IEDs—would end up trying to frustrate American efforts against ISIS. It’s a claim so ridiculous that it doesn’t even deserve a response since we already know very well that Shiite militias already actively engage and fight American-backed forces and advisors in Iraq and Syria.
But the IRGC defense is only half the battle, as the NIAC’s Ryan Costello takes up the cause of defending Iran’s ballistic missile program in a briefing memo on NIAC’s website.
Costello bases his arguments on a lawyerly-like parsing of fine print to excuse Iran’s missile program, but ignores the intent of United Nations resolutions which seek to actively discourage Iran from becoming another North Korea. The fact that Costello is arguing against that development is deeply disturbing and indicative of how little the Iran lobby fears Iran’s crash course race to catch up to North Korea.
Where Costello falls in lock-step with his partner Cullis’ editorial, is in making the same silly argument that sanctions against ballistic missiles threatens the nuclear agreement. Using the same twisted pretzel logic virtually anything the mullahs dislikes threatens the nuclear agreement:
- Protest the hanging of Iranian dissidents? That threatens the nuclear agreement;
- Demand the freeing of American prisoners? That threatens the nuclear agreement;
- Call for a halt to Iran’s support for Houthi rebels in Yemen? That threatens the nuclear agreement;
- Force Iranian-backed Shiite militias to stop killing Sunnis in Iraq and Syria? That threatens the nuclear agreement;
- Ask that Iran stop allowing its morality police to beat women on the streets? That threatens the nuclear agreement.
At a certain point, the NIAC’s logic becomes insanely stupid and that’s the point it has reached with Costello and Cullis’ propaganda pieces.
Costello even makes the excuse FOR the mullahs that Iran’s ballistic missiles program is “intrinsically” tied to its experience in the Iran-Iraq war and thus Iran has a right to these missiles to prevent any future attacks.
While Costello claims Iran has no interest in developing missiles with a range beyond 2,300 kilometers, he neglects to mention that allowing Iran to have a missile fleet with those ranges puts most of Europe, North Africa, the entire Middle East and virtually every important American military and naval base in the region in the crosshairs of Iranian missiles.
Neither Costello nor Cullis ever address the basic problem with their positions which is the lack of fundamental trust the world has in the religious leadership of Iran. The mullahs are fanatical in their pursuit of expanding the Islamic revolution and zealous in the crackdown of any dissenting opinions.
These heinous positions are illustrated in the decision over the weekend to sentence to death an Iranian and American-Iranian dual national on charges of promoting moral corruption.
The defendants, who have not been named, are believed to be a couple involved in the art industry who were arrested in July last year. They ran a leading art gallery in Tehran, the Iranian capital, and were known to associate with foreign diplomats, according to the Financial Times.
Iran has arrested several Iranians holding dual nationality in recent months in a move analysts suggest is intended to intimidate those associated with foreign businesses or who have social connections with foreigners, the Times said.
Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi, Tehran prosecutor-general, said on Sunday that the man and woman had been sentenced because they established “a new cult” and made “alcoholic beverages, encouraged vice . . . through throwing mixed parties [and] . . . exhibiting and selling obscene images at gallery”.