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 ↑
In an agreement between al-Qaida and the Islamic regime, three camps have been set up within Iran to train terrorists, WND has learned.
Al-Qaida members are trained to attack NATO forces in Afghanistan and collaborate with the Islamic regime on terrorist activities against Israel, the United States and some European countries, according to a source within the Revolutionary Guards intelligence division.
The camps are in the Sistan and Baluchestan provinces of Iran bordering Pakistan, where the al-Qaida members are trained in terrorism and guerrilla-warfare tactics.
The al-Qaida members, under the pretext of conducting commerce, enter Iran through local bazaars along the Pakistani-Iranian border, the source said. After completing the course, each al-Qaida member is paid the equivalent of $12,000 in appreciation of their participation and further collaboration with the regime’s Quds Forces.
Three training bases have been set up:
The Revolutionary Guards base, close to the airport and near Azadi Square in the city of Zahedan. It is equipped with a unit for bomb-making and explosives.
Zaboli, a camp built in the desert adjacent to the city of Zabol. It has a harsh 45-day training program.
The third site is south in the city of Nikshahr, though recently it was transformed into a type of hospital. It’s not clear what kind of activity occurred there.
Pakistan has collaborated with Iran for well over a decade on the terrorism training, according to the source. He said officials from the Pakistani Consulate across from the Guards base routinely watch the training.
Google Earth 2012 image: The Revolutionary Guards base in Zahedan
As reported exclusively by WND Dec. 18, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran’s supreme leader, took on a greater role in the terrorist movement after the death of Osama bin Laden. He has held meetings with al-Qaida commanders, including bin Laden’s successor, Ayman al-Zawahiri, and Adam Yahiye Gadahn, the American who makes videos for al-Qaida, to coordinate terror attacks in France and Germany. After the Tehran meetings in December, members of the regime’s Quds Forces met with al-Qaida operatives in Pakistan to finalize the terrorist plots.
Two Quds Forces commanders, Col. Hamidreza Monfared and Col. Ebrahim Tanabandeh, oversee the training, the source said. Before being transferred to the training sites, they served in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia and were involved in plans to blow up the bridge linking Bahrain to Saudi Arabia. The plot was foiled when a terrorist cell was exposed in late 2011.
According to the source, Monfared disclosed in a private meeting with other high-ranking officers that the leader of the 1996 bombing of the Khobar Towers in Saudi Arabia was Guard commander Jafar Sefri, who once served as the liaison between the Revolutionary Guards and the Sadr forces in Iraq. In the Khobar bombing, Sefri used al-Qaida operatives.
The June 25, 1996, truck bomb killed 19 U.S. servicemen and injured nearly 500 others of many nationalities. After a lengthy investigation, the FBI concluded Iran was involved in the attack.
The source said another Guard commander, Abass Agha Zamani, was instrumental in the Khobar bombing by arranging the transfer of funds and explosives for the mission.
Google Earth 2012 image - The Revolutionary Guards base in Zahedan - Bomb making facility
Nicknamed Abu Sharif, Zamani was a key figure early on after the Islamic Revolution in the formation of the Revolutionary Guards. At one time he served as Iran’s ambassador to Pakistan.
Another figure, Mohammad Faghir Gomshadzehi, is active in transferring explosives into Pakistan from border villages. But the source believes the activity is outside the Pakistan-Iran agreement and is being done without the knowledge of the Pakistanis.
The source named five other Guard commanders involved in the training of al-Qaida members: Capt. Hassan Tanabandeh, Lt. Ejdar Hashemi, Lt. Mohammad Hassan Nik Pey, Lt. Rasool Assadollahi and Lt. Kamal Ahmadi.
Khamenei has repeatedly warned America that should war break out, not only will Iran destroy Israel but it also will attack the U.S. homeland. The source said the regime, through its terrorist proxies such as Hezbollah and al-Qaida, is preparing terror attacks to destabilize the West if sanctions become unbearable for the regime or if a military confrontation takes place over its illicit nuclear program.