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April 19, 2006
UN Chief Blames Iran For Meddling In Lebanon

Kofi Annan has publicly scolded Iran for its financing and involvement with Hezbollah and their interference with the new democratic government of Lebanon. Benny Avni reports for the New York Sun on a rare outing by the UN of Iran's terror network ties and their efforts to undermine secular movements within Southwest Asia:

Secretary-General Annan for the first time has accused the mullahs of Iran of interfering in the affairs of the sovereign state Lebanon and asked that they heed the 2004 Security Council resolution urging the country's complete independence.

Mr. Annan last night also expressed his deep concern about the actions of Iran's surrogate militia - the terrorist organization Hezbollah, which operates in Lebanon - and its repeated defiance of the council's call for the disarming of all factions in Lebanon.

The language of the report, finalized late yesterday afternoon by the secretary-general's envoy in Lebanon, Terje Roed-Larsen, took a blunt tone for the usually mild-mannered Mr. Annan. ...

Past analyses of the implementation of the Security Council's Lebanon resolutions focused on Syrian cooperation, and omitted mention of Iran's influence there and its connection to Hezbollah, a Shiite organization founded by Tehran that is still commanded by Iranian Revolutionary Guards.

Hezbollah "maintains close ties, with frequent contacts and regular communication, with the Syrian Arab Republic and the Islamic Republic of Iran," yesterday's report, which was prepared by Mr. Larsen, who frequently travels to the Middle East on Mr. Annan's behalf, said in a clarifying footnote.

This clarification by the normally supine UN leadership reveals an increasing impatience with the mullahcracy's defiance of the UN over its nuclear program. Turtle Bay prepared this report only due to Syrian interference with the Cedar Revolution and the undeniable role it played in assassinating Lebanese politicians, especially the murder of Rafik Hariri which set off the populist revolt. France and the US have demanded an accounting for Syrian actions in the former French colony, but the inclusion of Iranian skullduggery has to be considered by Western nations as a bonus.

The report doesn't stop with Iranian involvement with Hezbollah, either. It also ties Iran to Hamas in Lebanon and Syria, a point underscored by US ambassador John Bolton. Now that they have openly pledged to support Hamas in Palestinian territories, their support of Islamist terrorism has become one of the worst-kept secrets of the region. The recognition of this obvious truth still comes as a surprise from the United Nations, which has gone out of its way to avoid taking any meaningful stand on Islamist terrorism

Iran should consider it a warning. After the celebratory antics of their president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad announcing the success of their (presumably) first enrichment cycle, even their allies have backed away, at least rhetorically. Russia issued a statement last night condemning Iran for its lack of cooperation in resolving the nuclear standoff and demanded an end to the enrichment program. Moscow has thus far refused to support economic sanctions, but the diplomatic pressure from the West and now the UN to stop Iranian efforts at destabilization and terrorism has ratcheted up a notch or two. Russia at some point may reconsider their support for a nuclear-armed Islamist government sitting on their southern border.

If Teheran loses the UN's benificence, then they have truly miscalculated and gone too far. The mullahcracy may have done what the West couldn't quite accomplish: motivate the UN to actually take significant action against Iranian intransigence.

Sphere It Digg! View blog reactions
Posted by Ed Morrissey at April 19, 2006 5:45 AM

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