2 years ago
In the end, Hezbollah finds itself in much the same position as the United States as it watches the clouds of war gather between Israel and Iran. Like the United States, it has reason to hope conflict can be averted. But like the United States, it is realistic about the likelihood that it will be drawn into a conflict once the first shots are fired.
To get the context for the statement above you must read his commentary. Andrew does come down warning that Hezbollah would likely respond against Israel if war comes to Iran, but he also casts us in the same light as Hezbollah: poor, strange bedfellows – hoping against war, shaking our heads at the very idea, war weary, and being dragged kicking and screaming against our will into the larger conflict if it comes.
I don’t see Hezbollah as dependent on the electorate in Lebanon as does Andrew, nor do I see them as war-weary, hoping against hope that war doesn’t come. They are part of Iran’s forward-deployed troops, present from the Middle East to South America. As for Iran (and its forward deployed troops), it all comes down to whether one believes the things that the Mullahs say.
“We do not worship Iran. We worship Allah. For patriotism is another name for paganism. I say let this land [Iran] burn. I say let this land go up in smoke, provided Islam emerges triumphant in the rest of the world”
I believe that the Mullahs mean what they say. We have discussed their behavior-controlling eschatology before. But if Hezbollah is only one part of Iran’s forward deployed troops, there is another more secretive part.
Intelligence agencies are searching for members of a secret Iranian network of assassins under orders to attack Jewish, Israeli and Western targets in Turkey.
According to intelligence sources, the organisation behind the attack is known as Unit 400, a secret part of the al Quds Brigade, which falls under the direct command of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran’s Supreme Leader.
“Unit 400 of the Qods Force has been developing in the last few months a standing operating procedure for carrying out an attack in Turkey against western targets as well as Israeli and Jewish. It is our firm assessment that these procedures are in a very advanced stage, and that the intention is to act on the plans very soon,” an intelligence source told Sky News.
There is also evidence that Unit 400 has been given instructions to carry out more frequent and more daring ‘terror’ attacks around the world as a demonstration of ‘Iran’s asymmetric power’ – in the face of the growing threat of Israeli or American air strikes on its alleged nuclear weapons programme, the sources said.
[ ... ]
“Unit 400 is a top-secret “special ops” unit within the elite overseas wing of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Qods Force (IRGC-QF). It plans and carries out terror attacks on external targets, and provides material support to foreign militia groups, at the direct behest of the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei. This is in accordance with the regime’s core strategic considerations about how best to challenge perceived enemies in Israel and the west – through asymmetric warfare – and to cope with mounting international pressure over its nuclear programme,” a secret study by a foreign intelligence agency said.
Several international intelligence sources confirmed that Ali Khamenei controlled the Quds Force through his close ally Qassem Suleiman.
“He runs the whole thing – directly. [Mahmoud] Ahmedinajad [the Iranian president] makes all the noise and gets the attention but it’s the Supreme Leader who is in charge of what is going on especially when it comes to international operations,” said a senior intelligence official.
Regular readers know all about General Suleimani. I have recommended a targeted assassination of him, as well as covert and asymmetric warfare against Iran and fomenting an insurgency and regime change in order to avoid all out warfare.
It seems that the only one who takes our advice seriously is Iran. They are masters of covert warfare, we … well, we are masters of vacilation and equivocation. But remember what I said that I could pull off with 400 well-trained, motivated fighters. Consider yourself warned, for it may soon be too late.
UPDATE: Thanks to Glenn Reynolds for the attention.