US State Department accuses Iran of being top state sponsor of terrorism

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Seal of the U.S. State Department.

In the latest report published by the United States State Department, it accuses Iran of being the top state sponsor of terrorism. The report contrasts Al-Qaeda's interest in "global jihad" against the interests which Iran is said to be sponsoring. Iran's focus is explained as Israel, Iraq, and Afghanistan.

The report describes Iran's interest in Israel as, "encouraging anti-Israeli terrorist activity, rhetorically, operationally, and financially." Supreme Leader Khamenei and President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad are accused of lauding terrorist attacks carried out by anti-Zionist groups. The report notes that Iran's support for organisations involved in the Israel-Palestine conflict is not limited to Shia groups such as Hezbollah; Hamas and others are, like most Palestinians, Sunni muslims.

Second, Iran is accused of playing a "destabilizing role in Iraq." In particular, Iran's providing of IED to rejectionist groups in Iraq were mentioned in the State Department report. The report also indicates that Iraq is "not currently a terrorist safe haven" but can become a "potential safe haven" for them. Iranian officials deny that they are supplying weapons to Iraqi insurgent groups.

Third, Iran is said have aided the Taliban militarily according to General Peter Pace and other U.S. officials. In Afghanistan, Iran gainsays a military role; it only acknowledges that it has helped with the reconstruction and revival of the Afghan economy.

The Islamic Revolutionary Guards and Iran's intelligence ministry were specifically named in the coordination of the activities of the Iranian government abroad.

This statements of this State Department report are not novel. In fact, in 2006, U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said, "The Iranian regime is today the world's leading state sponsor of terrorism."

Many Iranian officials accuse the United States of terrorism and a raft of crimes in return and "Death to America" chants are a regular scene at Friday prayers throughout Iran.

Ayatollah Ebrahim Amini, the 2nd deputy chair of the Assembly of Experts has, for instance, said,

How do they allow themselves to commit so many crimes? Is this the same democracy that Bush, Blair, and Sharon want to bring the Iraqi people as a gift? Death to this democracy. Is this how you want to present this democracy to the world? Shame on this democracy. Are you humans? Animals? What are you?...Why do they commit so many crimes? Stop it. Enough with the treachery. Enough with the crimes.

Other countries on the state sponsors of terrorism list were Cuba, North Korea, Sudan, and Syria.