Sunday, August 19, 2007

Iran preparing for war with the U.S. via Lebanon

Tehran - Iran is threatening to strike the U.S. with "stronger punches" while Hezbollah vows it is ready to become "dismembered limbs to keep Iran strong and dignified." This will likely leave Lebanon in the crossfire.

The Commander of Iran's Revolutionary Guards Gen. Rahim Safawi (left in picture), who met Hizbullah's deputy chief Sheikh Naim Qassem (right in picture) at a religious conference in Tehran, has threatened the United States with "Stronger Punches" and an Iranian dissident expected the group to strike in Lebanon.

Safawi made the remarks in an interview with the Iranian daily Keyhan stressing that "America will receive stronger strikes and punches from the Revolutionary Guards in the future."

"We will not remain silent in the face of American pressure and we will use all the force we have to confront the Americans. The Revolutionary Guard Corps has a tremendous power … and we have sophisticated weapons," he said.

Meanwhile, Iranian dissident Mohsen Sazghar, who was one the Revolutionary Guards founders, said the guards would escalate attacks against U.S. targets in "Afghanistan, Iraq and Lebanon" is retaliation for labeling the group a terrorist organization.

According to Elaph, the following is from a censored part of an interview Hassan Nasrallah gave to Iranian TV, as quoted by the reporter who conducted the interview:

We are ready to become dismembered limbs to keep Iran strong and dignified, for we are strong if Iran is strong. I am but a small soldier for Imam Khamenei. In Maroun al-Ras, 40 members from the Hizbullah forces stood against a contingent from the Zionist entity, and only 13 of them were martyred. The youth of Hizbullah acted in the name of Imam Khomeini and invoked Imam Hussein, and saluted the Iranian people.

In a related development, Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (pictured right with Qassem) on Saturday described Israel as "the flag of Satan" and said the Jewish state was destined to fall apart.

"The Zionist regime is the flag bearer of violation and occupation and this regime is the flag of Satan," Ahmadinejad told an international religious conference in Tehran, which was attended by Qassem and other religious figures.

"It is not unlikely that this regime be on the path to dissolution and deterioration when the philosophy behind its creation and survival is invalid," he said.

His comments came in the wake of a 30-billion-dollar arms deal between Israel and the United States which explicitly mentioned the threat of a "resurgent" Iran.

Washington and Israel, which is widely considered to be the Middle East's sole if undeclared nuclear power, are increasingly alarmed by Iran's nuclear program, which they suspect is a cover to develop atomic weapons.

Tehran insists the program is for peaceful, civilian energy purposes.

"The United States understands that Israel lives in an increasingly dangerous region... where Iran is resurgent, where Iran is seeking a nuclear capability, where it is seeking to expand its conventional power," U.S. Under Secretary of State Nicholas Burns said before signing the memorandum of understanding for the aid package in Jerusalem on Thursday.

There is now a nexus of cooperation between Iran, Syria, Hizbullah... and other groups that are responsible for conflict in this region," including the Palestinian Islamist movement Hamas, Burns said.

With current U.S. defense aid to Israel standing at 2.4 billion dollars a year, the new package will raise the value of assistance by 600 million dollars annually on average, officials said.

Iran also is the ostensible reason for Washington's controversial plans to install a missile defense system in Eastern Europe, a move which has sparked fierce condemnation from Russia.

The U.S. military wants to build a radar station in the Czech Republic and a launching site in Poland with 10 long-range interceptors capable of shooting down missiles.

It claims the system would defend Europe against attacks from limited missile strikes by smaller military powers such as Iran.

Ahmadinejad claimed on Thursday that if deployed, the U.S. system would threaten all of Asia.

"Such a plan goes beyond threatening one country. It concerns most of the continent, Asia," he said at a summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), according to a translation by organizers.

Iran has observer status at the SCO, which comprises China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

Iran consistently refuses to recognize Israel's right to exist in the Middle East, and Ahmadinejad sparked outrage in the international community when he said Israel should be "wiped off the map" shortly after coming to power in 2005.

In June he said a "countdown" had begun that would end with Lebanese and Palestinian militants destroying Israel. His government last year hosted a conference on the Holocaust, questioning the German Nazi genocide of the Jews during World War II.
Note: this article comes form the very anti-Hezbollah and pro-Empire website Ya Liban. I rate it as the Lebanese version of Debka. The primary source for the quote of Nasrallah in this article is an even more dubious website called From Beirut the the Beltway (whose name is probably the best indication of its ideological affiliations). Nevertheless, sometimes even such highly biased sources can be used to get some deliberately leaked info. In this case, the alleged statement by Hassan Nasrallah about his willingness to fight to defend Iran from a US aggression is consistent with his spiritual obligation to Ali Khamenei as Hezbollah's '
Wilayat-e-Faqih' - which can be very loosely translated as 'spiritual leader' (the opinion that Grand Ayatollah Mohammad Hussein Fadlallah is the spiritual leader of Hezbollah is mistaken). Even if Hasrallah was was misquoted, this article at least shows the awareness of the Imperial stooges in Lebanon that there could be hell to pay for them in case of a US attack on Iran.