A Network of Terrorism in Iran
The Islamic revolution of 1979 in Iran ushered in an area in which terrorist groups have strong links to that government. These activities have forced the United States and Iran to have a tumultuous relationship.
The Lebanese organization Hizballah is particularly linked to Iran. Hizballah receives more than $100 million annually from Iran. Hizballah received a host of military equipment from Iran, including small arms, rockets, anti-tank guided missiles, and artillery systems. In addition to funding, Hizballah is integrated into Iran’s external security network, as paramilitary and intelligence is shared. Anti-Israeli action has increased as Hizballah has become more important for Iran and Arab countries. Hizballah is linked to the Palestine Islamic Jihad and Hamas, groups whose words and actions express a disdain for Israeli policy. Peace negotiations that would have improved Israel’s relationship with both the Palestinians and Syrians have been derailed by Iran. The result of these failed negotiations is that Iran’s status within the Middle East is bettered.
Modern Iranian History
In 1979, the Islamic revolution in Iran ushered in a new Islamic-backed government, removing Iran’s royal family from power. Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini was now the new leader of Iran, who pushed the propaganda of the Islamic revolution worldwide.
The ideas of the Islamic revolution make up the constitution of Iran as well as the articles of organization for the Islamic Revolutionary Guard.
Fostering Terrorism Elsewhere
Although Iran’s link to Hizballah maybe strong, it is certainly not its only one with a group that promotes terrorism. Afghanistan, Pakistan, Bahrain, and Iraq are a few Islamic countries in which Iran has supported terrorist organizations. The groups push to remove their governments from power by any means necessary.
Iran may be a Shi’s Muslim country, but that doesn’t mean it is opposed to aiding other Muslim organizations. In recent years, Tehran has helped groups from Muslim backgrounds it has not typically been affiliated with. Iran has links to terrorist groups within Kurdistan and the Palestinian territory.
Al-Qa’ida and the Taliban are a few organizations supported by Iran, despite these groups disdain for Shi’a Islam.
Once again, this is Iran’s desire to promote the principles of the Islamic revolution as far as possible.
To learn more, read the work of Mark Dubowitz.
Yet, the recent problems in Syria–as its leader Bashar alAsad is facing opposition–poses difficulties for Iran. There are few allies to Iran in the Middle East, but Syria has been a loyal partner to the country.
If alAsad is removed from power because of the recent problems in Syria, it would weaken Iran’s ability to influence the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Iranian leadership feels the global campaign to dispose alAsad as the head of Syria is a move to weaken Iran’s role in the Middle East.