Skip to comments.Iranís top military commanders die in plane crash -(detailed rank and file info)
Posted on 01/09/2006 9:27:51 AM PST by Flavius
ehran, Iran, Jan. 09 A dozen senior commanders of Irans elite Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) died in a plane crash in northwest Iran on Monday, a government spokesman announced.
A Falcon jet belonging to the IRGC crashed 13 kilometres southeast of Lake Orumieh, killing all 15 passengers on board. They included seven members of the General Command of the IRGC Ground Forces.
The commanders who died in the crash included Brigadier General Ahmad Kazemi, commander of the IRGC Ground Forces and a rising star in Irans radical Islamist military, Brigadier General Saeed Mohtadi, commander of the IRGCs 27 Mohammad Division, Brigadier General Hanif, Director of Intelligence of the IRGC Ground Forces, Brigadier General Soleimani, Director of Operations of the IRGC Ground Forces, and Brigadier General Yazdani, Commander of the IRGC Artillery.
The Revolutionary Guards Corps was founded in the early days of the Islamic revolution in 1979 as an armed force loyal to Irans clerical rulers. Its commanders directly report to the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and their mission is to protect and propagate the Islamic revolution.
Prior to his recent appointment as commander of the IRGC Ground Forces, Kazemi commanded the IRGC Air Force and Missile Forces. He was promoted in the recent reshuffle of the IRGC general command that was ordered by the Supreme Leader and was regarded as a loyal Khamenei supporter.
In a statement released in Tehran, the General Command of the Armed Forces said the IRGC plane crashed at 9:30 am local time near Orumieh Airport. It identified the cause of the crash as the failure of both engines. Earlier reports cited fuel shortage and bad weather as the cause of the crash.
Irans hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad praised Ahmad Kazemi and other IRGC commanders who were killed in the incident. He said the armed forces must become symbols of resilience and honour by awaiting the return of the Mahdi [the Shiite messiah] and obeying the Supreme Leader.
The top IRGC commanders were on a mission to visit IRGC forces in north-western Iran near the Turkish and Iraqi borders.
The blow to the IRGC comes at a critical time when the force has been given huge powers by the Supreme Leader in the wake of the consolidation of power by the ultra-conservative faction after the election of Ahmadinejad, who is himself a former commander of the IRGC. Hundreds of Revolutionary Guards commanders have been given senior government positions. At least 13 ministers in Ahmadinejads cabinet hail from the Revolutionary Guards.
As part of sweeping changes in the IRGC, Khamenei recently appointed a radical Shiite cleric, Ali Saeedi, as his personal representative to the IRGC. Saeedi, who will act as the chief ideological commissar of the Revolutionary Guards, has already reactivated the dormant Political Bureau of the IRGC and has told the Guards commanders that the Supreme Leader wants the force to play a much more prominent role in the political arena.
A day ahead of the crash, sources close to the IRGC said in Tehran that further reshuffles in the Guards top command were afoot. They mentioned plans to promote Brigadier General Mohammad Hejazi as the new Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the IRGC.
Security forces in Orumieh have sealed off the site of the crash and many military commanders have arrived at the scene, according to eye-witnesses.
Just a few million more.
Why do I get the feeling either Israeli or CIA black ops types had a hand in this?
Naw. Couldn't be.
BTW Falcon is a French made jet.
Opening move against the Iran nuclear threat?
Didn't the mullahs just recently lose some other military types in a plane crash in Tehran???
Forget the CIA or Israel, perhaps they were thinking about a coup against the new looney in charge and got caught.
Terrible News! This is going to be a terrible blow to world peace! </sarc>
Let's hope so.
Is it really confirmed, or does Iran want us to think they were killed?
It gets your paranoid antennae waving. Another possibility is that maybe President Ahmadinejad saw one or some of these officers as inconvenient rivals.
But it's probably just an accident. These things do happen.
Glad to see that "someone" is not just sitting around waiting on Iran to get the bomb...
I don't yet believe this to be true.
I am almost positive that there would be a watershed change in just a half dozen flights in airbuses, exclusively of clerics, which can be arranged to end similarly...
Hopefully our tax dollars at work.
Something is cooking. I just hope that we are the ones stirring the pot.
Hey Generals: how about you all get on one plane together?
Do you think it's safe?
Can we have a few dozen more pictures of them burning, please?
Verdict is in. Case is closed.
*gavel bangs really loud*