U.S. government warns: Iran global terrorist activity highest in 20 yearsBy Mason White 12:28 PM June 11, 2013
|Iranian soldiers illustration|
By: Moses Gold
The U.S. government has warned that the global terror activities by Iran has reached the highest level in 20 years.
By Aryeh Savir
Tazpit News Agency for
The U.S. State Department released its Country Reports on Terrorism 2012 in late May. This report provides the Department of State’s annual assessment of trends and events in international terrorism that occurred during 2012.
The findings of the report indicate that the year 2012 saw a “marked resurgence” of terrorist attacks perpetrated by Iran or its proxies. Iran’s terrorist activity in 2012, the report says,“reached a tempo unseen since the 1990’s”. Iran sponsored terrorism through the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps-Qods Force (IRGC-QF), its Ministry of Intelligence and Security, and Hezbollah, Tehran’s ally in Lebanon. Iran’s terrorist activity in 2012 included attacks and attempted attacks in Southeast Asia, Europe, and Africa.
In January 2012, Hezbollah, in cooperation with the Islamic Revolutionary Guards, attempted to attack tourist sites in Bangkok visited by Israelis, using IEDs. A month later, on February 14, the Islamic Revolutionary Guards attempted another terrorist attack in Bangkok, this time using a magnet to attach an IED to the car of an Israeli diplomat.
On February 13, a terrorist attack occurred in New Delhi. An Israeli diplomat’s car was attacked using a magnetic IED that was attached to it. An Israeli diplomat’s wife driving the car was severely injured when the car blew up. Three Indian civilians were injured as well.
On July 18, an IED blew up in the back of a tourist bus about to take Israeli tourists from the airport to their hotel in the Black Sea resort of Burgas. The blast killed five Israeli tourists and the Bulgarian bus driver. In addition, 36 Israelis were wounded, three of them seriously.
On July 7, an attack targeting Israeli tourists in Cyprus by the Hezbollah was thwarted. Further attacks were attempted in Azerbaijan, on an embassy car in Georgia and Kenya.
In addition to terrorist activity, the report states that Iran was, and is still, involved in subversion intended to stir up instability in the Middle East by funding and supporting Shi’ite militias in Iraq, Palestinian terrorist organizations, Houthi rebels in Yemen, and the Syrian regime, thereby implementing its foreign policy goals.
According to the report, Iran provides weapons, training, and funding to Hamas and other Palestinian terrorist organizations, including the Palestinian Islamic Jihad and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command. Since the end of the second Lebanon war, Iran has assisted in rearming Hezbollah in direct violation of U.N. Security Council Resolution 1701.
In addition, Iran has provided hundreds of millions of dollars in support of Hezbollah in Lebanon and trained Hezbollah operatives at camps in Iran. The Islamic Revolutionary Guards trained Taliban. Since 2006, Iran has arranged arms shipments to Taliban members through Kandahar, Afghanistan. Iran provides extensive support, including weapons, funds, and training, to assist the Bashar Assad regime in its war against the coalition of regime opponents.
The report added that although terrorist attacks occurred in 85 different countries in 2012, they were heavily concentrated geographically. As in recent years, over half of all attacks (55%), fatalities (62%), and injuries (65%) occurred in just three countries: Pakistan, Iraq, and Afghanistan.
The report offers some guidelines for the future: “We are facing a more decentralized and geographically dispersed terrorist threat. Defeating a terrorist network requires us to work with our international partners to disrupt criminal and terrorist financial networks, strengthen rule of law institutions while respecting human rights, address recruitment, and eliminate the safe havens that protect and facilitate this activity. In the long-term, we must build the capabilities of our partners and counter the ideology that continues to incite terrorist violence around the world.”