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How Reasonable Was Decision To Designate Iran’s IRGC A Terrorist Organization? – OpEd

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Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), otherwise known in Iran as the so-called ‘Islamic’ Revolutionary Guard Corps, is designated as a terrorist organization on Monday (April 8, 2019). What followed is a heated-up debate on broadcast-media across the world as well as on various social-media plaforms.

Whether the decision was right and whether it is a sensible one — needs no futher consideration. Yet the debate that followed on mainstream broadcast-media and various social-media platforms need to be addressed. For this, a bunch of incidents and happenings that have been taking place in Middle East have to considered along with their connection to IRGC. Syria seems the appropriate conflict zone to start with.

In Syria, a 13-year-old boy’s penis was cut off by the brutal mukhabarat (which is the secret police of Syrian dictator Bashar-al-Assad) in 2011. The boy, named Hamza Al-Khateeb, was returned to his family with his body mutilated. His head was swollen, purple and disfigured, body was a mess of welts, cigarette burns and wounds from bullets fired to injure, not kill. Kneecaps smashed, neck broken, jaw shattered. The most brutal part of the torture was that, as mentioned earlier, his penis was cut off. After a video of his tortured-body was posted on YouTube, thousands of Syrians rallied and chanted “We Are All Hamza!”.

The boy was among hundreds of children and teenagers who faced the same fate in the hands of Assad’s police and army, though it was the boy’s story that attracted more coverage during the time from the mainstream media.

As Iran’s leaders always try to portray themselves as the symbol of moral values against, what the Iranian leaders call, ‘imperialism’, many in Iran and elsewhere expected them to act — or atleast speak — for the slayed victims and against the heinous activities of Bashar-al-Assad and his loyalists. Iranian leadership instead chose to side with the longtime ally Assad, who was already named — by the people from his own country, the region and world — as the “Butcher”.

What followed was horror, terror and death. First, Iranian leadership’s military arm, the IRGC, had led the campaign of killing the Sunnis and non-twelver Shias in thousands to depopulate many areas from Sunnis and non-twelver Shias — something which is no less than a genocide.

This fear of being killed for their sectarian identities had compelled a portion of the remaining Sunni and non-twelver Shia population to leave their homeland and seek refuge in other countries (partcularly neighbouring countries and Europe) so that they could escape the genocide — something which is no less than an ethnic cleansing.

In Syria, the IRGC had carried out the campaign with the help from Assad’s army and Iran-backed Lebanese militant group named Hezbollah. In Iraq, the IRGC had carried out the campaign with the help of sectarian elements in Iraqi army, Iran-backed twelver-militias in Iraq and Hezbollah.

Everyone with the slightest interest in Middle East affairs is well-informed about the sectarian cleansing that happened in Iraq’s Fallujah with the backing of the Iranian leadership and IRGC. The Iraqi forces and Iran-backed militias killed thousands of innocent Sunnis and non-twelver-Shias in the cover of “liberating” the area from ISIS.

All of the above said killing campaigns had been monitored, aided and managed in the ground-zero by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), which is designated as a ‘terrorist’ organization just the other day.

The IRGC-members themselves had engaged in the killings of innocent Sunnis in these two countries, particularly in Syria. For years, the IRGC has been training the terrorist proxies inside both Iraq and Syria as well as in other regional countries.

IRGC had also helped Bashar-al-Assad to carryout gas/chemical-bomb attacks on innocent civilians in rebel-held areas in Syria. Every mainstream global media had either published articles or broadcasted the footages of the aftermath of these repeated gas/chemical attacks on civilians. The broadcasted-footages clearly show how civilians, especially the children, died from these attacks. The worst part is that these children had to go through enormous sufferings and pain before ultimately losing their lives.

All the atrocities committed directly or indirectly by the IRGC suggests that if it is wrong to designate the IRGC as ‘terrorist’ organization, it would also be wrong to designate any other atrocious group as ‘terrorist’. If it is right to designate any atrocious group (including ISIS) as ‘terrorist’, it should equally be right to designate IRGC as ‘terrorist’.

If one poses the question “What we should call a terrorist?”, the obvious answer would be “a terrorist”, and so is the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and its leadership.

Bahauddin Foizee

Bahauddin Foizee

Bahauddin Foizee is a Threat/Risk Intelligence Analyst focusing on the assessment of investment, legal, security, political and geopolitical threat/risk. His insights, analysis and columns on these areas as well as on social, environmental, financial and military affairs in the Asia-Pacific/Indo-Pacific and the Middle East regions have been widely published on think-tank-publications and media-outlets across the world. He has been published on THE DIPLOMAT, THE NATIONAL INTEREST, OPED COLUMN SYNDICATION, ASIA TIMES, TRIBUNE CONTENT AGENCY, DEUTSCHES ASIENFORSCHUNGSZENTRUUM (German Asia Research Center), ASIAN CORRESPONDENT, and ASIA SENTINEL, among others.

2 thoughts on “How Reasonable Was Decision To Designate Iran’s IRGC A Terrorist Organization? – OpEd

  • Avatar
    April 9, 2019 at 10:30 am
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    So, how do we designate the Saudi regime? They never really distanced from the 911 attacks, or the Khashoggi killing, which was clearly a top down organized killing, murder.
    Don’t getme wrong, I have no feelings for the Iranian leaders but far more so for the iranians who suffer themselves day in day out. And what was Hitler, can we say they were terrorists? As you see, I find this a difficult one, the topic as such.

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  • Avatar
    April 11, 2019 at 10:13 am
    Permalink

    And the US has never encouraged torture and violent revolutionary movements? Or shown scant regard for civilian casualties at times? As one cynic remarked, be careful how you define terrorism, or somebody will prove the US military is the largest terrorist organisation on the planet. Arguably unfair, but not entirely so. This declaration by Trump is part of a trend – to move war outside any legal framework or conventions. The restraints may have been weak, but they did some good.

    Reply

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