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August 19, 2007

Iran Admits Its Role in Iraq and Nobody Catches It...(Kat-Missouri)

Okay. Maybe not just yet. With the Russians getting antsy over American expansion in the Middle East and the Caucuses, bombing Iran may not be an option. Or necessary as the US and allies continue to put financial pressure on Iran. We are playing a game of brinkmanship, complete with Russian bombers restarting nuclear bomber runs over NATO space. Essentially, it is to re-assert their interests in these areas. However, Iran is not so much a client state or Russian ally as it is an area of interest with shared concerns. Thus, Russia has little control of Tehran and may find its strategic economic and military plans outstripped by Iranian actions and the realities on the ground.

In response to US discussions about placing the IRGC (Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps) on the terrorist list, the Iranians have released a statement to Iranian news agencies that they will "punch" the US according to AP headlines. But, what was actually said was:

"America will receive a heavier punch from the guards in the future," he was quoted as saying in the conservative daily Kayhan. "We will never remain silent in the face of U.S. pressure and we will use our leverage against them."

Interesting that none of the media has picked up on the tacit admission that the IRGC has already been involved in attacking the US. Not that they will consider, for the first time, "punching back". That they actually already have been attacking the US and they will give a "heavier" punch in the future. It is all in the semantics.

That's not news to most of us. The military has been saying that for sometime. The media ignores this statement because they don't want to confirm the military's allegations. If it's confirmed, the US public might actually support the escalation of war with Iran that the Democrats and many experts are afraid the administration is working towards. Placing the IRGC on the terrorist list is probably a compromise position with congress just short of war.



Today, Gen. Lynch from MFI-South Baghdad told the press that they are tracking 50 known IRGC/QODS Force in his area alone. What is unstated is how many are anywhere else in Iraq.

The US military and US foreign policy on Iran are converging in Iraq as US forces step sweeps to run down or kill insurgent leaders, including members of the Mahdi Army; arguably, the militia with the closest ties to Iran and responsible for at least 48 attacks on US forces in Baghdad. This is the "leverage" that Iran speaks about while simultaneously having government officials deny any such activities. US forces are most likely sweeping up as many most dangerous of the Mahdi and Iranian forces as they can before the US goes ahead with designating the IRGC as a terrorist organization.

It's a step by step process of fighting the Iranian proxies directly and placing more financial pressure on Iran, just short of war. In fact, aside from US-French ties being improved with the French envoy's visit to Iraq (thus, giving tacit approval to the US efforts in Iraq and the progress therein), the visit could also be looked at as reminding Iran that their intentions to spread their influence in the region are not acceptable to France.

Even Chirac stated that France would defend itself with nuclear weapons if necessary and that was in response the Iranian attempts to create a missile that would carry a warhead as far as the European continent. There are certain realities that transcend even Iraq.

These small steps may seem frustratingly slow to some, but it is interesting to watch the dance and wonder if it ends in a crescendo or fades away.

In other news, Iranian Kurdish workers party claims it shot down one Iranian chopper on the Iran-Iraq border and possibly forced another to make a hard landing. While the Iranians deny the claim, insisting it was bad weather, several thousand Iranian forces are gathering on the Iraq-Iran border. This only days after Iran announces, again, that it has surface to surface missiles that can travel up to 2,000 kilometers.

Stand-by for fireworks.

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posted by xgenghisx at 07:30 PM

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