October 4, 2007

Iran Expands Operations Against The West

It seems as though the Iranians want war with the West more than the West wants war with Iran. British military intelligence reports that the Quds Force, a unit within the Revolutionary Guards, has begun supplying the Taliban with the same kinds of terrorist bombs that have been put to use by al-Qaeda in Iraq:

Iran is supplying the Taliban in Afghanistan with the same bomb-making equipment it provides to insurgents in Iraq, according to British military intelligence officers.

US Army General Dan McNeill, the commander of Nato forces in Afghanistan, said that the discovery of more than 50 roadside bombs and timers in lorries crossing the border from Iran last month proves that Iran's Quds Revolutionary Guards are actively supporting the Taliban. ...

"I cannot see how it is possible for at least the Iranian military, probably the Quds force, to not have known of this convoy," said Gen McNeill.

He claimed the vehicles contained materials to make explosively formed penetrators (EFPs), a type of roadside bomb. Britain and America have accused Iran of supplying such bombs to Iraqi insurgents. ...

A spokesman for the British embassy in Kabul said yesterday: "This confirms our view that elements within Iran are supporting the Taliban. We have previously raised the issue of arms to the Taliban with the Iranians and will continue to do so." Last month, Lt Col Patrick Sanders, the commander of British forces in Basra, said troops there were engaged in a "proxy war" with Iran, which was supplying Shia militias.

EFPs differ significantly from IEDs. The latter refer to bombs fashioned on the fly from leftover munitions; the 'I' stands for "improvised". Iraqi insurgents and AQI terrorists culled shells left out in the open by the collapsed Iraqi military after the invasion before the US and Coalition forces could secure them all. For those who read the blog in 2004, recall that Mike the SEAL had the task of helping secure these sites when working as a private security contractor.

EFPs, however, do not get manufactured with scavenged parts. They have to be manufactured specifically for the task, and manufactured with some precision. That requires tool and dye works, a forge, raw materials, and some expert knowledge in both design and manufacture. It isn't something the Taliban can produce in their nomadic wanderings around Waziristan. The only way the Taliban can get their hands on EFPs is to buy them, or have them donated -- and only one nation in the area has the werewithal and the will to do either.

Iran seems determined to push its way into the war. Even the British recognize the Iranian design and manufacture of these terrorist devices, and they're not exactly champing at the bit for a war with the mullahs. At some point, Iran has to pay a price for its actions in supplying our enemies and contributing to the deaths of our troops. We should have begun a serious information campaign against the mullahs after 1979 to bring democracy activists into power, and especially after 2001. We will likely have to pay the price for handling Iran with kid gloves, and the price will be a bloody attack on each other's assets in the Middle East. Either that, or we signal that Iran can help kill our troops at will for as long as they like.


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