Reza Kahlili, author of the award-winning book "A Time to Betray," served in CIA Directorate of Operations, as a spy in the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, counterterrorism expert; currently serves on the Task Force on National and Homeland Security, an advisory board to Congress and the advisory board of the Foundation for Democracy in Iran (FDI). He regularly appears in national and international media as an expert on Iran and counterterrorism inMore ↓Less ↑
Members of the Quds Forces’ elite Unit 400 have been activated inside Turkey to attack U.S. and Israeli interests and to support the Kurdish separatist movement PKK with violence as needed.
A source within the Revolutionary Guards confirmed the presence of the Iranian assets in Turkey as Iran increases pressure on the Turkish government to stop its support of the rebels against Bashar al-Assad in Syria.
The assets are to attack Western interests in Turkey should war break out against either Syria or Iran and at the same time work to destabilize Turkey as a warning for it not to interfere in Syria’s affairs.
Iranian leaders have continuously warned Turkey, Saudi Arabia and even America about any interference in Syria, that Assad’s regime is their red line.
According to the Turkish newspaper Today’s Zaman, an Iranian spy was arrested on Sept. 1 while collaborating with the Kurdish separatists. In the ensuing investigation, he confessed to being an Iranian operative within the Revolutionary Guards.
The same paper revealed recently that nine spies have been arrested in Turkey, two of them Iranian nationals and the other seven of Turkish descent. The spies provided information on Iranian contacts with the PKK fighters and their mission in identifying strategic targets within Turkey.
At one time Iran and Turkey collaborated in fending off attacks by the Kurdish separatists both in Turkey and Iran, but now Iran, in order to destabilize Turkey, reportedly is supporting PKK guerrilla attacks inside Turkey.
During the last month, PKK fighters have attacked a military convoy and a police station, set off bombs and kidnapped Turks to create an environment similar to Syria’s.
According to a report Monday in the German newspaper Die Welt, the Iranian regime has sent more than 100 spies into Turkey since March and has facilitated PKK fighters with their intrusion into Turkey from within Iran.
The report, expanding on recent PKK attacks, cited one Sunday on a Turkish military base that killed 10 soldiers.
Turkish security experts said that not only has Iran stopped intelligence collaboration on the Kurdish fighters with Turkey but also that the Islamic regime is actively collaborating with the fighters, the report added.
Iran has warned Turkey that its interference in Syria will have unwanted consequences and that should it get militarily involved in confronting the Assad regime, Iran will attack Turkey to protect a fellow dictator. But even before such a history-changing event, it is increasing its support to Assad by shipping military equipment to Syria over Iraqi airspace, according to The New York Times.
In a meeting last March with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the Iranian supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, stated that, “The Islamic Republic will defend Syria because of its support for the resistance front against the Zionist regime (Israel) and is vehemently opposed to any intervention by foreign forces in Syrian internal affairs.”
Last week, the commander of the Revolutionary Guards, Gen. Salar Abnoush, in a statement at the University of Ghazvin, declared that, “Today we are in an all-out war militarily in Syria, as well as a cultural one.”
Another commander of the Guards, Mohammad Ali Assoudi, warned on Saturday, “If America were to attack Syria, Iran, along with Syria’s allies, will take action, which would amount to a fiasco for America.”
Ever since the uprising in Syria started, the Islamic regime’s Revolutionary Guards have collaborated with the Assad regime’s suppression of its own people, which so far has killed more than 20,000 people, including women and children.
It is ironic that while Turkey is suffering terrorist attacks, Iran is warning against any interference in the events in Syria and that Turkey should reevaluate its position toward the Assad regime.
For Iran, it’s do or die as the fall of Assad could culminate in much more pressure on the Islamic regime, disconnect the supply line to Hezbollah and provide an opportunity for the West to confront Iran without it worrying that such confrontation would expand to all of the Middle East.
However, the Iranian regime is determined to continue its illicit nuclear program despite much international pressure. It is determined to protect Assad and come out of its current confrontation with the West and regional powers like Saudi Arabia and Turkey as the leader of the worldwide Islamic movement. It is determined to reshape the geopolitics of not only the region but the world.
Reza Kahlili translated this Iranian video about Islamic prophecies of a coming messiah and the destruction of Israel:
Reza Kahlili is a pseudonym for a former CIA operative in Iran’s Revolutionary Guards and author of the award-winning book “A Time to Betray” (Simon & Schuster, 2010). He serves on the Task Force on National and Homeland Security and the advisory board of the Foundation for Democracy in Iran (FDI).