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Eye on Iran

April 21, 2004

 

Iran sent a delegation to help negotiate with the militants in Iraq. Remember that last week. But is peace their ultimate goal? Or does Tehran have another agenda?

 

Steve Doocy: Let’s ask Fox foreign affairs analyst and strategic policy consulting president, Alireza Jafarzadeh. Hello Alireza

 

 

 

Alireza Jafarzadeh: Hello Steve.

 

Steve Doocy: All right. We’ve been talking about, for the last few weeks, it’s just not the Iraqi’s over in Iraq, these insurgents, some of them crossing the border from Iran. And they’re just stirring the pot because they don’t want Iraq to be a democracy.

 

Alireza Jafarzadeh: That’s exactly the case, Steve. Since last April when Baghdad fell, Iran has been heavily involved in the Iraqi affairs by sending hundreds of millions of dollars of money, by sending arms, funding all kinds of groups there. Not only the Iraqi Islamic extremist groups but also they have formed their own groups including Hezbollah, modeled after the Lebanese Hezbollah, --

 

 

 

Steve Doocy: How’s all this money getting in there? I thought we were cracking down on this stuff.

 

Alireza Jafarzadeh: Well, we’re not. Unfortunately, we’re not. There are thousands of pilgrims who are freely crossing the border everyday, at some days as many as 30 thousand are crossing the border into Iraq, and the Ministry of Intelligence agents, the Revolutionary Guards who are freely coming into Iraq. I found out just minutes ago that one of the groups that Iran has recently formed in the southern part of Iraq, known as 15th Shaban Group that is based in Basrah and Nasiriyah, they have sent their forces to Najaf.

 

Also a number of Iranian backed Islamic extremists groups have been sent from Kut, Al-Amarah, Nasiriyah, and Basrah to Najaf.

 

 

Steve Doocy: What a coincidence, this is where all the stuff is going on.

 

Brian Kilmeade: And we’re not going inside, we’re staying on the outside because of the holy city status that has among the Shiites. Now real quick, why would that five-man, four-man delegation get in there? Did the British ask Iran and did we ask the British to ask Iran to help us out?

 

Alireza Jafarzadeh: well, it’s not very clear but from what I understand is that it was really initiated by the Iranians themselves, the Iranian regime. They wanted to send a delegation to have a foot in the door of negotiations to better position themselves. This is the game they play. You remember in the mid 80’s they were involved in the hostage taking themselves in Lebanon

 

Brian Kilmeade: And they used the Hezbollah.

 

Alireza Jafarzadeh: And then they used the Hezbollah and then they offered to mediate. The fact is Iran itself is the arsonist. You never ask the arsonist to help put down the fire. All they are going to do is add more fuel to the fire. So I think what the United States needs to do, they need to be extremely firm against Tehran because you have this 600-pound gorilla sitting there with all the money and the fund and the arms, they are trying to …

 

Brian Kilmeade: And yet we only call at Syria, today we called at Syria. Colin Powell called Syria. We haven’t called at Iran.

 

Alireza Jafarzadeh: I think Iran by far is the biggest outside influence in Iraq.

 

Steve Doocy: They need to put up a wall between the two countries and just stop the people from coming in.

 

Alireza Jafarzadeh: And not only that, which is absolutely possible, but also on the political side we need to send a very strong signal to Tehran that either they stop their meddling, either they stop sending arms, or the United States can beat the Iranians at their own game by taking the fight to their own turf, by supporting the Iranian opposition who wants to bring regime change in Iran.

 

Steve Doocy: Alireza Jafarzadeh, we thank you very much for joining us.

 

Alireza Jafarzadeh: Thank you very much.

 

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