Iranian Regime Gives Green Light to Qods Force, Proxies to Initiate Plans Against US and its Allies

Iranian Regime Gives Green Light to Qods Force, Proxies to Initiate Plans Against US and its Allies, ISIS Study Group, June 1, 2015

In Yesterday’s article titled “Arabian Pensinsula Violence Escalates After Second IS Bombing in Saudi Arabia,” we stated that our sources in the region have been reporting back that movement appears to be underway towards targeting westerners – mainly Americans. Specifically, we’ve been informed that the Qods Force may have directed Hezbollah, Kitaib Hezbollah (KH) and the Houthis to begin making plans for conducting William Buckley-style abductions Americans in Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Yemen. Furthermore, reporting from various media outlets have already begun covering the Americans taken hostage by the Houthis and a Hezbollah plot disrupted in Cyprus. None of these are a “coincidence.” Its all by design and timed with the nuclear weapons negotiations. Why do this if the Obama administration is prepared to give them everything without having to sacrifice anything on their end? It all comes down to the fact that the Iranian regime views the US government is weak – and they will be able to be much more “assertive” by escalating their belligerence. Thus far the Obama administration has done nothing to prove otherwise.

Arabian Pensinsula Violence Escalates After Second IS Bombing in Saudi Arabia


The Middle East roach infestation has originated from Iran – so who will turn on the light to make them scatter?

We’ve been warning about the Qods Force working to expand their influence in Yemen and model the Houthis after Lebanese Hezbollah. In “Iranian Regime Consolidates Yemeni Gains, Begins Work on Forming Houthi Intel Proxy” we laid out how such work has already been underway. Furthermore, a consistent theme we’ve been touching on in our Arabian Peninsula reporting has been how intelligence collection against US State Department (DoS) personnel and American citizens in the country had dramatically increased with the influx of Hezbollah and Iranian military personnel into the country – so none of this is “new,” although the Obama administration would like to make you think it is, and that the Qods Force doesn’t exercise any control over the Houthis. The inconvenient truth is that they do, and the man calling the shots in the country is Qods Force External Operations Division (Department 400) BG Aboldreza Shahlai.

Iranian Regime Consolidates Yemeni Gains, Begins Work on Forming Houthi Intel Proxy

Check out the following links for additional info on the Qods Force/Houthi/Hezbollah targeting of Americans in Yemen and the greater Arabian Peninsula:

GCC SOF Teams Alerted For Deployment, AQAP Gains Strength and Iran Preps For Attacks Against Saudi Arabia

Saudis Begin Yemen Military OPs as the IRGC-Qods Force Prepares For Round 2

Poised to Fill Yemen’s Power Vacuum – Iran Tightens Grip on the Peninsula

IRGC-Qods Force: The Arabian Peninsula Campaign and President Obama’s Failed Foreign Policy

Yemen’s Houthi Rebels: The Hand of Iran?

AQAP vs. Shia Proxy Fighting Intensifies in Yemen

Shia Proxy Threat to US ISIS Strategy in Saudi Arabia

Regarding BG Aboldreza Shahlai, we first introduced him to our readers in our 04 APR 15 article titled, “AQAP and Qods Force Make Their Moves in Yemen as Saudis Struggle to Maintain Coalition.” At the time our sources inside the country had came across information on the presence of a senior Qods Force External Operations Division official had set up shop in the Sadah-area and tasked with overseeing overall operations in the country. We followed this up with an article a month later (“Failed State: Saudi Coaltion Increases Ground Presence as Iran Begins Targeting the Kingdom, US”) revealing his identity. Most westerners have never heard of the guy, but Iranian expats opposed to the regime know all about him. Shahlai was the architect of the Qods Force’s lethal aid program to Shia proxy forces in Iraq during OIF and was also one of the primary planners for the 2007 attack on the Karbala Provincial Joint Coordination Center (PJCC) that killed five US Servicemen. Known as “Suleimani’s Fist,” he holds considerable influence in the Qods Force commander’s inner-circle for advocating “outside the box” solutions to problems – most of which call for directly targeting America and Israel abroad. He was also the mastermind of the plot to assassinate the Saudi Ambassador to the US in New York City that involved his contacts within the Mexican drug cartel known as Los Zetas. His family member Mansur Arbabsiar was the lead-facilitator for the operation. Perhaps more important is Shahlai’s close ties to Abdul Malik al-Houthi and establishment of alternate weapons smuggling routes coming from Africa.

Failed State: Saudi Coaltion Increases Ground Presence as Iran Begins Targeting the Kingdom, US

AQAP and Qods Force Make Their Moves in Yemen as Saudis Struggle to Maintain Coalition

African Nations to Send 7,500 to Combat Boko Haram – Why is Iran so Interested?


Asaib al-Haq leader Qais al-Khazali worked closely with BG Shahlai during OIF and was a participant in the 2007 attack on the PJCC – he’s now on the front-lines fighting the Islamic State (IS) in Northern Iraq

BG Shahlai’s Yemen assignment is a good indicator that the Iranian regime intends to carry out a campaign targeting American, Israeli and to lesser extent Saudi nationals. With this and Shahlai’s relationship with the Houthis in mind, nobody should be in the least bit surprised that four of our fellow Americans are being held hostage in Yemen. The Houthis have already proven to be very efficient proxies for the Iranians inside Yemen. That said, we will likely see them conducting more operations increasing in complexity and scale within the next 6-9 months across the border into Saudi Arabia itself. They’re already conducting rocket attacks against Saudi border towns and outposts.

Houthi rebels in Yemen are holding multiple Americans prisoner

‘Several’ Americans held in Yemen: State Dept


Abdul Malik al-Houthi: Close personal friend to BG Shahlai
Source: al-Arabiya

Its the same situation in Iraq, where we’ve heard from our Baghdad-based contacts reports of an attack being planned by Kataib Hezbollah (KH) targeting the US Embassy. Again, this should surprise no one with the high concentration of Qods Force personnel and proxy forces present inside the country and the capital in particular. We’ve also heard that KH has sympathizers within the Iraqi Security Force (ISF) ranks who are being tapped to assist in the attack. There’s also a considerable anti-air threat in and around BIAP these days coming from both IS and KH fighters. Fortunately, the American forces on the ground are already well aware of this – whether DoS or the Obama administration actually takes the threat serious is another matter entirely.

ISOF Commandos’ Admiration of Their IRGC-Qods Force Embeds

The IRGC-Qods Force


ISOF troopers don’t even try to hide their support of the IRGC-Qods Force Ramazan Corps anymore – a huge red flag for any US military personnel being deployed to Iraq these days
Source: The ISIS Study Group


Now why would KH need MANPADs since IS has no Air Force? Perhaps the Qods Force supplied them to KH in order to target someone else?
Source: The ISIS Study Group

Unfortunately these operations aren’t limited to just the Middle East. Security forces in Cyprus recently arrested a man reportedly involved in a line of Hezbollah operations targeting Israeli interests in Europe. When the Cypriot police arrested him, they also confiscated close to two tons of “suspicious materials” in his basement. Although no additional details on the materials has been made public as of this writing, our source informed us that the materials are for producing explosives (ammonium nitrate was the he saw mentioned). The guy they detained was born in Lebanon but had a Canadian passport, which tends to fit the profile of the kind of personnel Hezbollah’s special operations wing and the Qods Force prefers to recruit into their ranks.

Cyprus police foil planned Hezbollah attacks against Israeli targets in Europe

Cyprus arrest of Hezbollah man ‘uncovered large-scale Iranian terror plot across Europe’

Crime scene

Scene of the crime
Source: Reuters

Qods Force and Hezbollah operations have spiked considerably since 2009 with attacks being executed in places like Bulgaria, India and Thailand along with the disrupted plot that was planned for New York City mentioned earlier. Of these, the NYC and Burgas, Bulgaria plots had the direct involvement of BG Shahlai. The telltale signs are how both plots called for using some of his preferred methods of using third parties to do the dirty work and targeting westerners in areas not known for Iranian activity. In fact, the attack in Burgas also involved a Lebanese Arab in possession of Canadian travel documents. The bombings in New Delhi and Bangkok utilized personnel from the IRGC-Qods Force Department 5000 – which is the equivalent to the US Army’s 1st Special Forces Group in that both units are geographically aligned to the Asia/Pacific region.

Bulgaria Has New Evidence on Hezbollah – Report

Bulgaria names Hezbollah suspects behind bombing of Israeli bus in Burgas

Bulgaria says clear signs Hezbollah behind Burgas bombing

Hezbollah Is Blamed for Attack on Israeli Tourists in Bulgaria

Thai Police Widen Search for Iranians

Israel’s Iran warning as police hunt fourth Bangkok bomber with help from prostitute

India names Iranian suspects in Israeli car bombing


The 2012 Bombing in Burgas, Bulgaria
Source: Reuters

Bibi Netanyahu was absolutely right to visit America and appear before Congress to air his concerns about the Iranian threat. The events that have occurred over the last few months have added strength to his concerns. Unfortunately, the Obama administration has been downplaying the Iranian threat and the American mainstream media let them get away with it by not holding their feet to the same fire that they did to the Bush administration. Sure, a few American media outlets have finally begun asking some national security questions of substance, but far too many seem to be concerned with covering Bruce Jenner’s hormone therapy and President Obama’s March Madness brackets than they are about things that will have a profound impact on our way of life a lot sooner than people think.

The American media needs to start asking the Obama administration, “why are we seeing such a surge in external operations by the IRGC-Qods Force and their proxies if the current engagement strategy with the Iranian regime is “working,” as they claim?” Indeed members of our staff have worked the Iranian problem-set for some time, but it doesn’t require a whole lot in the way of burning calories to connect the dots between this surge in external operations and the ongoing negotiations over Iran’s nuclear weapons program. Had the media truly cared to search for the truth instead of protect an administration they’ve compromised their journalistic integrity for, they would’ve already put out several articles and investigative specials on the subject. If they want to save face and salvage what’s left of their credibility, then we recommend they do some digging on the current threat to the US Embassy in Baghdad coming from KH and their ISF supporters based in the Green Zone. We can assure you that DoS is fully aware of the threat coming from Shia militias that are now being painted to the American people as “the good guys.”

They should also start peppering John Kirby and Marie Harf about the recent counter-terror raid in Cyprus and hammer them about whether the administration ever thought about demanding that the Iranian regime release our citizens in Yemen and US Marine veteran Amir Hekmati during these nuclear weapon talks. We assess that the Qods Force and their proxies are going to continue escalating their actions against our people and our allies for as long as they think they can get away with it. Don’t buy into the Administration’s talk that the regime can’t “control” the Qods Force, because if they say that they’re either lying, extremely ignorant or both. How so? The IRGC as a whole is made up only the most loyal followers of Ayatollah Khameini’s militant ideology. The IRGC-Qods Force are the “most loyal” of those serving in the IRGC – with GEN Suleimani answering only to Khameini. More importantly, the Shia proxy forces won’t take action against the US and its allies unless given authorization to do so by their Qods Force handlers. Make no mistake, this is only the beginning. There will be more attacks coming down the pipe from these guys. Our current national security strategy and foreign policy has set our country on a collision course – is anybody truly paying attention? More importantly, is this administration willing to sacrifice American lives for the appearance of obtaining “peace” with an Iranian regime that has no interest in pursuing normal relations? Something to think about.


Amir Hekmati: Prisoner of Iran
Source: The ISIS Study Group

If you want to know what the Iranian regime is all about, then check out our Inside Iran’s Middle East series:

Inside Iran’s Middle East: the Kurdish Insurgency

Inside Iran’s Middle East: the Southeast Insurgency

Inside Iran’s Middle East: the Charm Offensive

Inside Iran’s Middle East: the “Reformers”

Inside Iran’s Middle East: the Nuclear Weapons Program

Other Related Articles:

Mr. Netanyahu Goes to Washington

Today’s Middle East: The Burning Fuse of the 21st Century’s “Great Game”

The Persian Hustle: How Iran Dupes Clueless US State Dept in Nuke Talks and Moves to Dominate the Middle East

How the North Korean Regime Affects the Middle East

Yemen isn’t on Verge of Civil War, It Already is – And Saudi Arabia Will Get Involved

What Yemen’s Coming Apart at the Seams Means to Arabian Peninsula

The Hezbollah Presence In Iraq

Explore posts in the same categories: Diplomacy, Foreign policy, Hezbollah, Iran, Iran military, Iran nuke inspections, Iran scam, Iranian proxies, Iraq, Iraq war, Islamic State, Islamic supremacy, Islamism, Israel, Middle East, Netanyahu, Nukes, Obama, P5+1, Saudi Arabia, Shiite, Sunni, Syria war, Terrorists, U.S. allies, U.S. Military

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