memri
December 6, 2006 Special Dispatch No. 1378

Top Iranian Military Commanders: In Case of Attack on Iran, We'll Target U.S. Troops in Gulf; U.S. Warships ‘Have No Maneuverability and Are Easily Sunk’; Iranian Suicide Squad Commander: We'll Carry Out Suicide Operations in Gulf Countries

December 6, 2006
Iran | Special Dispatch No. 1378

To mark Iran's Basij Week and Navy Day, in late November 2006, Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) Commander Yahya Rahim Safavi and Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps Navy Commander Admiral Sejad Kouchaki both threatened that Iran would strike U.S. military targets in the Gulf in the event of an attack on Iran. IRGC Commander Safavi made threats against "the 200,000 U.S. troops" stationed in the region, threatened to close the Straits of Hormuz, and said that Iran had not yet given orders to the Iraqi people to fight against the U.S. troops in Iraq. IRGC Navy Commander Kouchaki threatened to sink U.S. warships in the Gulf.

In addition, Firooz Rajai-Far, commander of the Martyrs Brigades, commander of an Iranian volunteer suicide bomber organization, threatened that her group would carry out suicide operations in the Gulf countries if the latter permitted the U.S. military to use U.S. military bases in those countries to launch an attack on Iran.

The following are the main points of reports on the threats:

IRGC Commander Safavi: 200,000 [U.S.] Troops In Their 33 Bases Are Highly Vulnerable

To mark Basij Day, on November 21, 2006 IRGC Commander Yahya Rahim Safavi said, "Any time it wants, Iran can implement its control of the Straits of Hormuz, from whose waters 17 million barrels of oil [per day] leave [the region]...

"The Americans are sunk in the quagmire of Afghanistan and Iraq, and there is no way for them [to move either] forward or backward. Assuming they attack Iran, [then] their 200,000 troops, in their 33 bases, are highly vulnerable. American politicians and military commanders both know this.

"They can start a war, but [the decision to] end [the war] will not be in their hands. In the meantime, we still have not told the Iraqi people to act..." [1]

Iranian Navy Commander: "American Warships Are Heavy... And Easily Sunk"

On November 27, 2006, the Iranian news agency Mehr reported that IRGC Navy Commander Admiral Sejad Kouchaki had said, "We are fully monitoring the route taken by the American [warships in the Gulf], and because American warships are heavy, they have no maneuverability, and are easily sunk." [2]

Iranian Suicide Bomber Organization Threatens Suicide Operations Against U.S. Targets in Gulf

On November 20, 2006, the Kuwaiti daily Al-Rai reported: "An extremist Iranian group is threatening to carry out suicide operations in the Gulf countries that are allies of the U.S., in the event that the U.S. uses its own bases in these countries to attack Iran." [3]

The paper quoted the commander of the Kataeb Al-Istishhadiyeen (Martyrdom Brigades) organization, Firooz Rajai, [4] as saying: "If the [U.S.] bases in the [Gulf] countries are used by the American forces as a point of departure for an attack [on Iran], these [countries] should not expect to enjoy security while we [Iran] have none." She added: "If some of the [Arab Gulf] countries provide America with bases or camps for them to use for conducting an attack against Iran, is it logical for them to expect security?"

The report also said: "Rajai further clarified that the Martyrdom Brigades, which was founded in 2002, currently included 56 volunteer suicide bombers, and was independent and unconnected to the [Iranian] government or the IRGC.

"She said that she had been one of the students who took over the U.S. Embassy [in 1980] after the Islamic Revolution of 1979, and that she would be willing to do it again were [the Embassy] to reopen."

Rajai has been in the Iranian media a number of times, as leader of an Iranian organization of volunteers who have registered to carry out suicide operations against American targets and interests in the region:

· On May 27, 2004, the reformist daily Sharq reported that Rajai-Far was an activist for a local Iranian organization called Hizbullah, and quoted her as saying that "martyrdom operations are the only option to expel the Americans and British from Iraq." [5]

· On June 5, 2004, Sharq reported that Rajai-Far had been one of the organizers of a conference for signing up volunteers for suicide operations against American targets in Iraq and against Israel. The report also said that she had been among the "students who support the line of Imam Khomeini" in their occupation of the U.S. Embassy.

Sharq also quoted Rajai-Far as saying, "The violence of martyrdom operations is the same as the violence of the war, and there is no escape from [this violence]. Although the target of the [martyrdom] operation is military, civilians may also be killed - and this is exactly what the Americans do. When civilians are killed in their [the Americans'] attacks, they blame the inaccuracy of their weapons, and act innocent." [6]

Also, on February 7, 2005, on Al-Arabiya TV, Rajai- Far praised suicide operations (TO VIEW THIS CLIP AT MEMRITV.ORG, GO TO http://memritv.org/clip/en/736.htm.)


[1] Fars news agency, November 21, 2006, http://www.farsnews.com/newstext.php?nn=8508300470 .

[2] Mehr news agency, November 27, 2006, http://www.mehrnews.com/fa/NewsDetail.aspx?NewsID=412831.

[3] Al-Rai (Kuwait), November 20, 2006.

[4] It should be noted that Firooz Rajai, quoted here by Al-Rai, appears to be the same individual who is known to the Iranian media by her full name, Firooz Rajai-Far.

[5] See MEMRI Special Dispatch No. 723, "Iran's Revolutionary Guards Official Threatens Suicide Operations: 'Our Missiles Are Ready to Strike at Anglo-Saxon Culture… There Are 29 Sensitive Sites in the U.S. and the West…'" May 28, 2004, Iran's Revolutionary Guards Official Threatens Suicide Operations: 'Our Missiles Are Ready to Strike at Anglo-Saxon Culture… There Are 29 Sensitive Sites in the U.S. and the West…'

[6] Sharq (Iran), June 5, 2004.

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