On April 8, 2019, the United States State Department announced that President Trump’s administration designated Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) as a foreign terrorist organization (FTO).
This was the first time that Washington designated an arm of another government as an Foreign Terrorist Organization under Section 219 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) for IRGC’s engagement in a campaign of global terrorism.
Not long after taking power, the Islamic revolutionaries established their military organization by the direct order of Ayatollah Khomeini’s Supreme Leadership. The IRGC was one of the first among such groups that was founded during the first days after the Islamic Revolutionaries seized power in Iran in February 1979. The IRGC was assigned to safeguard the Islamic Republic, its policies, and interests throughout the globe. There is not even mention of Iran in the name of this organization.
Today, along with Tehran’s lobbyists, IRGC is the most important overseas arm of the Islamic Republic in the West. It seems that whatever the lobbyists cannot advance, the IRGC would be taken care of by its terrorist operations, threats, and proxies.
Although Khomeini had remarked that the IRGC should not be involved in financial affairs, the organization began grabbing everything of economic value there was to take in Iran.
The IRGC has run a mafia-crew and cartel of high-revenue industries, including oil, gas, insurance, construction projects, and drug trafficking to feed Ayatollahs’ thirst for power.
It uses the financial windfall to fund operational capabilities and terror activities around the globe. IRGC has also boasted its missile bases through the mass-producing cruise and ballistic missiles and electronic warfare equipment. It also has hundreds of missile-launching speed boats.
The IRGC has also engaged in criminal activities to suppress Iranians, especially dissidents, foreigners, and dual citizens, by arrest, jail, and torture.
This is the terrorist organization whose high-ranked members were involved in Iran Hostage Crisis that took place on November 4, 1979, and fifty-two American diplomats and citizens were held hostage for about 444 days after these revolutionaries, organized as the “Muslim Student Followers of the Imam’s Line,” stormed the U.S. embassy compound in Tehran.
On October 23, 1983, two suicide truck bombers struck a building in the Lebanese capital, Beirut, where housed the American and French service members of the Multinational Force in Lebanon (MNF). Those servicemen were involved in the Lebanese Civil War as military peacekeeping. The terrorist attack caused 307 casualties, 241 Americans, 58 French military personnel, 6 civilians, and of course, the suicide bombers.
On July 18, 1994, an anti-semitic attack occurred in Argentina. A suicide van bomber attacked the Asociación Mutual Israelita Argentina building in Buenos Aires killing 85 people, and injuring hundreds.
On January 8, 2020, two IRGC missiles – 30 seconds apart – hit the Ukrainian Airlines flight 752, destroying the commercial jetliner leaving Tehran’s airport heading for Kiev, which Killed all 176 passengers and crew members on board.
The IRGC has carried out a series of state-backed assassinations on European soil, targeting Iranian former officials, artists, militaries, community leaders, political leaders and ethnic community leaders including the former Prime Minister Shapour Bakhtiar. IRGC still plans for terror plots across the world.
The presence of the FTO-IRGC in the region is offensive, not defensive. In 2006, the Islamic Republic’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei handed over the responsibility for securing the Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz to the IRGC.
The Islamic Republic’s authorities have frequently threatened to close the vital world’s oil route, the Strait of Hormuz. The weapons and military equipment that Iran’s IRGC has built and developed also reflect the strategy of asymmetric warfare during a possible confrontation with the US.
IRGC missiles could target the regional US allies, or may hit European countries if fired from Syria or Lebanon where the Islamic Republic’s proxies and militants are active.
In the past decade, rockets and missiles launched by Iran-backed militia groups have targeted the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad on the capital’s Green Zone or the bases housing US-led coalition troops.
Further, IRGC Navy seeks to be present in international waters. This presents a hybrid threat.
Recently, the FBI has informed the American Truth Project‘s National Director Aynaz Anni Cyrus that the IRGC cyber army broke into her system, likely for a while, and stole all data and information she had. This IRGC-controlled hack has happened on the United States soil.
In the latest act of such kind, two days after the blackout hit Iran Nuclear Site in what was allegedly blamed to be Israeli sabotage, an Israeli-owned vessel reportedly came under missile fire on Tuesday, April 13, 2021, near the UAE. This is the third attack of its kind in recent months.
These are just some parts of nefarious-deadly activities that have been operated by IRGC’s offshore branch, Quds Force.
IRGC as a whole, as the funding arm of terror, is a serious threat to the U.S national interests and its allies around the world and dealing with them must be considered a priority.
At the nick of time, the national interests of Americans depend on keeping IRGC as a foreign terrorist group and for Canada to list IRGC in its entirety as a terrorist entity and not just the Quds Forces
This is why President Trump was right to declare IRGC a foreign terrorist organization and President Biden’s administration must preserve the 45th U.S. President’s legacy and hold Iran’s IRGC on the list.
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