Skip to comments.Iranian Alert - December 20, 2004 [EST] FBI Catches Iranian Surveillance Teams Red-handed in US
Posted on 12/19/2004 9:06:58 PM PST by DoctorZInEdited on 12/20/2004 10:29:05 AM PST by Sidebar Moderator. [history]
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Tehran Accuses Israel after FBI Catches Iranian Surveillance Teams Red-handed
Excerpt from DEBKA-Net-Weekly 186 Updated by DEBKAfile
December 20, 2004, 9:46 PM (GMT+02:00)
Iranian Intelligence and Security Ministry ordered surveillance of Israeli diplomatic missions
To subscribe to DEBKA-Net-Weekly click HERE .
Iranian foreign ministry spokesman announced Sunday December 19 that intelligence minister Ali Younessi would soon report to the government on an eight-member spy ring that gathered information for Israel. No further information was offered about the identities of the spies, the nature of the information they had gathered or when.
DEBKAfiles intelligence sources classify this vague, unverifiable charge as a typical Iranian exercise to cover up a fiasco. (Only recently they claimed to have put unnamed al Qaeda terrorists on trial.) It came two days after DEBKA-Net-Weekly broke the story that Iranian and Iran-sponsored surveillance teams has been discovered hanging about outside Israels diplomatic missions in the United States, South America, West Europe and the Middle East. Team members rounded up by the American FBI and Egyptian intelligence in the last ten days admitted under interrogation that they were collecting information for Iranian intelligence.
Here is an excerpt from the DEBKA-Net-Weekly exclusive:
Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak gave Israels trade and industry minister Ehud Olmert some disturbing news on Tuesday, December 14, when the two countries signed an accord that grants certain Egyptian exports duty-free status in the United States.
The day before the Israeli ministers arrival in Cairo, Egyptian security services arrested a group of Egyptian Islamic fundamentalists carrying out surveillance of the Israeli embassy in Cairo and monitoring the movements of Israeli diplomats and their families in the city. They told their interrogators they were working for Iran.
Jerusalem was not bowled over by this friendly tip from the Egyptian president.
DEBKA-Net-Weeklys counter-terrorism sources report that foreign intelligence services have been telling Israel since late November that Iranian spy teams have been spotted outside Israeli missions in various parts of the world, including one nabbed by the FBI watching Israeli consulates in Los Angeles, Atlanta and Houston. It was made up of Iranian Americans, Arab and Pakistani students - some of them US citizens, and all activists belonging to Muslim fundamentalist groups.
They were perfectly aware that the data sent to Iranian intelligence was intended for use in hostage taking and bombing attacks against Israeli missions.
The notion of Tehran-instigated terrorist strikes in the middle of Americas main cities struck alarm in US intelligence agencies and Homeland Security department. Clearly, operations of this magnitude could not have been planned without top-level sanction from spiritual leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, or without the presence in America of an operational network. Although assigned with striking Israeli consulates, there is nothing to stop this network from expanding its mission to American strategic targets as well.
Of particular concern are the close ties evolving between Iranian intelligence and al Qaeda cells based inside the Islamic republic. US intelligence sources have learned that Khamenei in person has created a new clandestine umbrella organization for bringing together as an arm of his bureau all the al Qaeda-linked groups and likeminded movements.
US intelligence experts are certain that data gathered for Tehran by the captured Iranian surveillance team may well have reached al Qaeda, some of it passed deliberately. Osama bin Ladens organization is believed to be plotting a major attack in the United States. The Islamic Republic is in the habit of using proxies for its terror campaigns, like the Lebanese Hizballah against Israeli targets. That Al Qaeda operatives are harbored in Iran and run cells in many countries make it a natural partner-in-terror.
In the wake of the round-up of Iranian teams, al Qaeda cells were also picked up in Brussels, Amsterdam, Madrid and the Uruguayan capital of Montevideo. Hizballah surveillance teams were rounded up in parts of West Europe.
The US interrogation of the Iranian surveillance team and sightings of other watchers have led Israeli intelligence and security chiefs to conclude that Tehran was plotting simultaneous terrorist strikes across America and other parts of the world, blowing up Israeli missions and Jewish centers and taking hostages in several places at once. The captured team may even have been feeding deeply buried terrorist cells set up to carry out this string of assaults and still at large.
Israel has accordingly put all its embassies, consulates and other missions, as well as airlines, shipping companies and overseas company offices on high terror alert. Security has also been stepped up at overseas Jewish institutions and schools.
Yep, spying is standard practice when dealing with enemies, especially suicidal enemies that want to nuke Israel and the US. I wonder how shocked the MSM will be to find that the CIA was also spying on Iran. Personally, I think we or Israel shoulda gone in and done em. No negotiations, no UN bullsh*t.
Iran: Israel, U.S. Rigging Iraq ElectionMon Dec 20, 2004 09:24 AM ET
TEHRAN (Reuters) - Israeli and U.S. agents were behind bombings in Iraq's Shi'ite holy cities of Kerbala and Najaf, Iran's Supreme Leader said Monday, accusing Tehran's arch-foes of trying to rig Iraq's elections for their own ends.
Shi'ite Muslim Iran was quick to condemn Sunday's car bombings in Najaf and Kerbala, which killed 66 people.
"I am sure Israeli and American spy services were behind these events. This is a plot which aims at keeping the Iraqis so busy that they will miss the exceptional chance to participate in the January 30 elections," Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said, speaking to Mecca pilgrimage organizers on state TV.
"The British and Americans want to hold elections on the surface but in reality they want to bring their own agents to power by holding superficial elections," added the Supreme Leader, who has the last word on all state matters.
Officials from oil-rich Iran have called for fully democratic elections next year in Iraq, where the majority of people are their Shi'ite coreligionists.
President Bush and Iraq's interim Defense Minister Hazim al-Shalaan have accused Iran of aiding al Qaeda ally Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and former agents of Saddam Hussein in inflaming pre-election violence.
Many analysts believe that the simmering violence in Iraq distracts Washington's gaze from Tehran.
Ayad Allawi: Iraq Defense Min's Iran , Syria Comments Not Govt View[Excerpt]
December 20, 2004
Dow Jones Newswires
BAGHDAD -- Iraq's interim Prime Minister Ayad Allawi distanced himself Monday from his defense minister's comments in which he accused Iran and Syria of supporting insurgents in Iraq, saying this did not represent the government's position.
Iraqi Defense Minister Hazem Shaalan said Wednesday Iranian and Syrian intelligence agents, together with former operatives from Saddam Hussein's security forces, were cooperating with the al-Qaida group in Iraq led by Jordanian militant Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.
Both Iran and Syria have denied the accusations saying they want to see a stable Iraq.
Asked to comment about Shaalan's statement, Allawi told reporters: "I have no comments. The minister of defense was talking from his own perspective, it's not represent the government attitude."
He declined to elaborate.
In July, Shaalan said Iran is Iraq's "first enemy" for allegedly supporting the insurgency against the U.S.-installed government. ...
12/19/04 - IRAN AND SYRIA MEDDLE IN IRAQThe following is an editorial reflecting the views of the United States Government:
Officials of Iraqi's interim government say Iran and Syria are supporting terrorists in Iraq and trying to sway the national assembly elections set for January 30th. Iraqi Defense Minister Hazem Shaalann said that Iranian and Syrian intelligence agents, along with former operatives from Saddam Hussein's security forces, are cooperating with the al-Qaida in Iraq group led by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.
President George W. Bush says that Iraqis should be allowed to determine their own future, without interference from either Iran or Syria:
"We have made it very clear to the countries in the neighborhood... that we expect there to be help in establishing a society in which people are able to elect their leaders; and that we expect people to work with the Iraqi interim government to enforce borders, to stop the flow of people and money that aim to help these terrorists. We've made that very clear. . . . And we will continue to make it clear to both Syria and Iran that...meddling in the internal affairs of Iraq is not in their interest."
U.S. State Department spokesman Richard Boucher says the United States has expressed its concerns directly to the governments of Iran and Syria:
"We are indeed seeing a variety of efforts by Iran to support groups or otherwise get involved in the internal affairs of Iraq. . . . Iran made a commitment to combat the flow of terrorists and support for terrorists across the Iranian border and to avoid any kind of interference in Iraq's internal affairs. . . .We think it's in the interests of all, including Iraq's neighbors, for people to respect the political transition and stabilization process and to help us succeed in Iraq, and we will continue to state very clearly our view that Iran needs to live up to those standards. . . . We've called on Syria to prevent its territory from being used by Baathists or former people associated with the regime to support the insurgency and we've called on them to return money and other assets that belong to the Iraqi people."
State Department spokesman Richard Boucher said the U.S. will do "whatever is appropriate" to keep this kind of interference from affecting the course of events in Iraq.
MORE WOMEN ON DEATH ROW IN THE ISLAMIC REPUBLIC OF IRAN
Posted Sunday, December 19, 2004
TEHRAN, 19 Dec. (IPS) The Islamic Republic is increasing brutal treatment of women in Iran despite calls from the European Union and international human rights organisations to pay more attention to the appalling human rights situation.
The Islam-based Judiciary, a power that like all other important organs of the regime is directly controlled by the leader, Ayatollah Ali Khameneh'i, has ordered the death of at least four women in the last six months, all of them on charges of prostitution or attitude contrary to the Chariaa, or Islamic laws.
Hajjiyeh Esmailvand, a thirty years-old woman from the northern city of Jolfa, on the borders with neighbouring Azerbaijan, is the latest victim of Islamic laws, was sentenced to death on accusation of having a sexual relationship with an Azeri man.
Hajjiyeh Esmailvand, a thirty years-old woman is the latest victim of Islamic laws, being sentenced to stoning.
"Her (death) sentence is approved by the Supreme Court, but there are no orders to carry out the sentence. We do not yet know if it is by stoning or hanging", the British news agency Reuters quoted an official as having confirmed.
According to reports, Ms. Esmailvand was sentenced to five years imprisonment, to be followed by execution by stoning, for adultery with an unnamed man who at the time was a 17 year old minor. Although the exact date of her arrest and trial are not known, it is reported that she has been imprisoned in the town of Jolfa, in the north west of Iran, since January 2000, the London-based Amnesty International reported on the case.
The Iranian Penal Code is very specific about the manner of execution and types of stones which should be used. Article 102 states that men will be buried up to their waists and women up to their breasts for the purpose of execution by stoning. Article 104 states, with reference to the penalty for adultery, that the stones used should not be large enough to kill the person by one or two strikes, nor should they be so small that they could not be defined as stones.
All death sentences in Iran must be upheld by the Supreme Court before they can be carried out. In November 2004, the Supreme Court upheld the death sentence against Hajieh but changed the lower court's verdict from death by hanging to death by stoning. Reports suggest that the Supreme Court has ordered that the remainder of Hajiehs five year prison sentence be annulled so that the stoning sentence can be carried out before 21 December.
The news follows reports of a 18-year old girl, "Leyla M", who has a mental age of eight, reportedly facing imminent execution for "morality-related" offences in Iran after being forced into prostitution by her mother as a child.
Leyla was reportedly sentenced to death on charges of "acts contrary to chastity" by controlling a brothel, having intercourse with blood relatives and giving birth to an illegitimate child. She is to be flogged before she is executed. She had apparently confessed to the charges.
Leyla was forced into prostitution by her mother when she was eight years old, according to the 28 November report, and was raped repeatedly thereafter. She gave birth to her first child when she was nine, and was sentenced to 100 lashes for prostitution at around the same time. At the age of 12, her family sold her to an Afghan man to become his temporary wife.
His mother became her new pimp, selling her body without her consent. At the age of 14 she became pregnant again, and received a further 100 lashes, after which she was moved to a maternity ward to give birth to twins. After this "temporary marriage", her family sold her again, to a 55-year-old man, married with two children, who had Leylas customers come to his house.
Amnesty International UK Media Director Mike Blakemore said:
"This is an urgent case. Hejieh could be killed in the next five days if we do not act quickly. Our members here in the UK are writing to the Iranian authorities, imploring them to stop this brutal execution. Campaigners in Iran are also taking action. But we need more people to stand up and be counted, to tell the Iranian authorities that this is not acceptable.
A month earlier, Zhila Iazadi, 13, was sentenced to death by stoning on decision from a court in the Kurdish city of Marivan, after being found by her devout parents that she was pregnant from her 15 years-old brother.
However, the Supreme Court changed the original sentence into imprisonment after Mrs. Shirin Ebadi, the Iranian lawyer who won the 2003 Nobel Peace Prize alerted the international community while on a tour of Scandinavian nations.
Prior to this case, Atefeh Rajabi was hanged in August in the Caspian Sea port of Neka for sex before marriage.
The Iranian Penal Code is very specific about the manner of execution and types of stones which should be used.
The judge, a cleric, who hanged Atefeh himself in the citys main square insisted she was 20, but lawyers and diplomats who saw her death certificate confirmed that she was only 16.
Amnesty International is aware of at least one case in which a sentence of execution by stoning has reportedly been issued this year. According to a report on 8 January 2004 in the Iran newspaper, a criminal court in the city of Qazvin sentenced an unnamed man to 80 lashes and 10 years' imprisonment to be followed by execution by stoning. It is not known whether this sentence has been carried out.
Amnesty International believes that the death penalty is the most extreme form of torture. It is a cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment, and a violation of the right to life as proclaimed in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR).
It is clear that the punishment of stoning is designed to cause the victim grievous pain before leading to death. Such methods of execution specifically designed to increase the suffering of victims are of particular concern to Amnesty International, as the most extreme and cruel form of torture, the human rights organisation said.
One in three women around the world suffers serious violence in their lifetime, at home, in the community or in war, just because they are women, Amnesty International said, adding that the Organisation is running a global campaign to Stop Violence Against Women.
The human rights organisation is calling on governments to repeal laws that permit and encourage violence against women, and on communities to challenge attitudes that allow violence to continue. ENDS IRAN EXECUTIONS 191204
Editors note: For details of how to help stop the executions of Hajieh and Leyla M, please go to: www.amnesty.org.uk/action/
A nice convenient accident might set back the programs for a couple of years. We could clean up before that and be in a much safer position.
I agree Paul. We're going to give the wrong nation too much playing room one of these days, whether it be North Korea or Iran.
And when they do what they are bound to do, Jimmy Carter will be out there on the talk circuit making sure we're to blame for his coat tails.
It would appear that Iran hasn't learned.
A terrorist network based in Afghanistan launched the deadliest terror attack ever on America. 3 months later, Afghanistan's regime was removed from power.
Iran: You want to attack America? Go right ahead. Bring it on. Either you'll fail, or you'll be successful. 'Success' means your regime will be facing imminent destruction. In diplomat-speak, it is not in your interests to attempt an attack.
Another thing. I read that the terrorists, and former Saddam loyalists, and the usual suspects (Iran, Syria, etc.) are doing everything that they can to stop the election in Iraq. Meaning that for them, it is all or nothing. Which really isn't surprising. But I think it is plausible that Iran might have an incremental plan, such as:
1) Import terror to Iraq.
Option number 1 is having an effect, as President Bush admitted today. But not as much as the Iranians would like, I suspect.
2) Have one of their friends launch a massive terror attack.
Option number 2 is basically the Iraqi equivalent of 9/11 in terms of scale. Pull all their efforts together and try for one or two spectacular attacks. But, failing that, or if the elections are still on track (somehow, but if they pulled off such an attack, it might be quiet difficult to keep the elections on track)....
3) Have the Iranian military launch a full-scale invasion of Iraq. Iran would be giving up and taking care of business the old-fashioned way. Their troops would also be slaughtered by the Americans.
4) Iranian launches missles on multiple Iraqi cities, with conventional payloads. Iraq would be total chaos, and if the Americans were slow to launch a counter-strike (as I suspectthey would be), Iran would claim a propaganda victory. They might also claim possession of nuclear warheads for good measure.
or, the nightmare scenario...
5) Iran detonates a nuclear device in Baghdad. I recall a report that Iran's rulers want a device ready by January '05. The possibility that the report is valid is chilling, but then again it could be the Chalibi Syndrome. SO I don't know. But it is possible. But I would tend to rate it as "unlikely."
But, then again, the enemies of democracy and freedom are viciously desperate. January 30, 2005 is doomsday for them.
John Loftus tonight presented an intruiging scenario for taking down Iran (ultimately) in the 2005 timeframe, assuming the elections are successful.
1) Iraq goes to the UN (ignore that detail if you want, it's just a waste of time anyway), demands war against Syria for formenting the 'insurgency'. Let's assume that the UNSC says 'No way!' (the worst part of it is, Syria itself is on the Security Council! What madness...). Iraq invades Syria with 'assistance' from the US military. The US recovers Saddam's WMD's, thus restoring worldwide legitimacy to the war in Iraq. Since they are in Syria already, they take down the puppet Lebanon, and get the rest of the chem and bio WMD's. The coalition shuts the nuclear services Syria is providing for Iran, and retrieves the paperwork Syria doesn't destroy in time before the Marines knock on the door.
So, then, Iran is severed from its Islamic puppets/partners (they still have China, Russia, North Korea, etc.), and we have the incriminating evidence against Iran in full force. Which hopefully Annan and Co. can't ignore any longer. Loftus says that the White House told Israel, essentially, "Don't bother dealing with Assad anymore. His government won't be around much longer."
It's basically the backdoor strategy into Iran, in my mind. Hey, if it works, and soon enough, it's good enough for me. Just hope it is soon enough. If the whole thing works, there will be peace in Israel, at least for a time. Wow. Iraq isn't a clean affair. But, hey, neither was World War II.
I just hope that the elections go off smoothly. 40 days away now. Afghanistan couldn't have gone smoother. NO matter what happens in the next six weeks, we gotta have the elections. Won't be perfect. But the Democrats and the OCSE weren't satisfied with the election process of 2004.
What an insult. Europeans monitoring our election. The world would be a dark place without America.
The president says this will be liberty's century. Hey, he's doing his part. I just hope he won't be too late to avert a disaster.
But do it right!
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