Alireza Jafarzadeh

Agents on Tehran’s payroll involved in death squads hold prominent positions in the U.S.-backed Iraqi government and National Assembly, according to an expert on Iran who broke the news about the country’s nuclear weapons program.

Alireza Jafarzadeh, author of the new book “The Iran threat: President Ahmadinejad and the Coming Nuclear Crisis,” said the efforts by Iran to place its agents in the Iraqi government form a part of Tehran’s larger plan to export its revolution.

The U.S. is having such a difficult time winning the war, he said, because Iran is fueling the Iraqis with bombs and weapons that are killing American soldiers.

Tomorrow, Jafarzadeh noted, the U.S. ambassador to Baghdad, Zalmay Khalilzad, will hold a news conference to present a dossier of Iran’s efforts to fuel sectarian violence in Iraq.

The administration’s effort to prove its assertion Iran is helping fuel the violence in Iraq comes as Democratic senators at a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing today warned against a drift toward war with Tehran.

Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., a candidate for president in 2008, said senators will demand “clarity and transparency in terms of U.S. policy so that we don’t repeat some of the mistakes that have been made in the past.”

“What I think many of us are concerned about is that we stumble into active hostilities with Iran without having aggressively pursued diplomatic approaches, without the American people understanding exactly what’s taking place,” Obama told John Negroponte, picked to become Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice’s deputy.

Jafarzadeh said Iran is determined to succeed on three fronts.

“First and foremost, on the Iraqi front, where Iran is aggressively escalating its influence and presence in Iraq. Secondly, the nuclear front; nothing will deter them on this point. Finally, Iran wants to step up terrorism in the region.”

Jafarzadeh said Iran is a “country to be reckoned with,” and the U.S. “will never win the battle with the military or negotiations.”

In August 2002, with access to dissident groups inside Iran, Jafarzadeh was the first to break the news of Iran’s nuclear programs and its secret nuclear facilities in Natanz and Arak.

Jafarzadeh describes Iran as a five-headed dragon, with each head as a deadly force: Interference in Iraq, nuclear weapons program, terrorism, opposition to peace in the Middle East and suppression of its domestic population.

“The only way to slay this dragon is to rely on the Achilles heel of the regime – the highly-motivated, dissatisfied population of young people in Iran, led by an organized opposition.”

Jafarzadeh noted that Thursday marks the beginning of the “10-day Dawn” that led to the Feb.11, 1979, Islamic revolution. The regime plans high-profile activities in which President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will begin “making a lot of noise,” which will culminate in dismissing the U.N. Security Council Resolution asking Iran to halt its enrichment programs.

Jafarzadeh says the regime is convinced the U.S. is in a weak political position that Tehran can use to its advantage. U.S. military might is not working in the Middle East, specifically in Iraq, he says.

“The way to deal with Iran is not with war, bombs or negotiations; that doesn’t work,” Jafarzadeh asserted. “A major change in politics and a new approach is what is necessary. The international community must support the young people of Iran, the majority of whom want a free and democratic nation. That is what will frighten the Iranian president.”

The U.S., he says, must have a long-term plan to stop the Iran’s aggressiveness before it gets the nuclear bomb and “turns Iraq into a sister Islamic republic.”

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