Monday, May 07, 2007

The Proxy War - Attacks On Iran

By Cernig

Amid the talk in Western media about Iran's alleged meddling in Iraq to incite proxy attacks on US troops, it's worth remembering that - at least in the region - allegations of U.S. proxy attacks on Iran have just as much credibility.

Thus, when regional news services report about Al-Qaida linked Kurdish terror groups preparing to attack Iran, many join the dots. At the very least, U.S. inaction against such groups despite angry calls from Turkey and Iran puts the U.S. in the category of "if you choose not to decide you've still made a choice."
Tension has been high on the border between Iraq's Kurdistan region and Iran in recent days because of the suspect movement of armed Kurdish groups, an anonymous source told Adnkronos International (AKI). A source within the Kurdish peshmerga militia - which allied itself with the US-led coalition in the 2003 war and serves as the main security force for the Kurdistan regional government - added that "intelligence acquired by the local authorities shows that Ansar al-Islam and Ansar al-Sunna - linked to al-Qaeda - are reorganising their ranks and deploying their forces near the border".

At the same time, a Kurdish armed group has distributed a statement in the area close to the Iranian border, threatening the 'apostates' of Islam and calling on local people to reveal the names of young people who recently converted to Christianity.

The statement, which Adnkronos International (AKI) has seen, adds that "the apostates of the Islamic religion will be the targets of a programme by the jihadi groups and the residents must collaborate with Ansar al-Islam to reveal their identities".

Some young Kurds in Iraq have espoused Christianity reportedly after the arrival of some foreign organisations which may have been involved in proselytising.
Others go further and allege the same kind of deliberate covert operations using terrorists as proxies as the U.S. accuses Iran of doing both in Iraq and elsewhere. In this months Atlantic, reporter David Samuels echoes Seymour Hersh's accusation that there is a concerted proxy war already underway against Iran (via Raw Story).
Since last Fall, he writes, "Rice and her colleagues in the administration decided to embark on a daring and risky third course: a coordinated campaign, directed with the help of the intelligence services of Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, Israel, and the United Arab Emirates....The bill for the covert part of this activity, which has involved funding sectarian political movements and paramilitary groups in Iraq, Iran, Lebanon, and the Palestinian territories, is said to amount to more than $300 million. It is being paid by Saudi Arabia and other concerned Gulf states, for whom the combination of a hasty American withdrawal from Iraq and a nuclear-armed Iran means trouble."

Samuels suggests that Iran has already faced a variety of internal attacks as a consequence of this covert program.

"They pointed to an upsurge in antigovernment guerrilla activity inside Iran, including a bomb in Zahedan, the economic center of the province of Baluchistan, that killed 11 soldiers in the elite Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps on February 14; the mysterious death of the Iranian scientist Ardashir Hosseinpour, who worked on uranium enrichment at the Isfahan nuclear facility; and the defection of a high-ranking Iranian general named Ali Asgari, a former deputy minister of defense who was also the Revolutionary Guard officer responsible for training and supplying Hezbollah during its war against the Israelis in southern Lebanon in the 1980s," Samuels notes.
There is as much evidence for such allegations as there is for allegations of Iranian proxy attacks against the U.S. - which is to say, circumstantial and inconclusive of the collusion of top leaders.

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