Iran News Round Up September 3, 2013

A selection of the latest news stories and editorials published in Iranian news outlets, compiled by AEI Critical Threats Project Iran Analyst Will Fulton and Iran Intern Amir Toumaj. To receive this daily newsletter, please subscribe online.

(E) = Article in English

Excerpts of these translations may only be used with the expressed consent of the authors.

Politics

  • Assembly of Experts member Ayatollah Hassan Mamdouhi stated, [IRGC Quds Force Commander Maj. Gen. Qassem] Suleimani introduced good details regarding Syria and Lebanon. Mr. Suleimani said regarding the Syrian situation that the people of this country are victorious against America and Syria is successful.” 
  • Speaker of Parliament Ali Larijani considers a “political solution” the only way to resolve the Syrian crisis:
    • “Some capricious regional countries create a slippery slope, and the Americans will fall into the swamp by stepping on it, although, of course, it seems that the Americans have the background for this measure.”
    • “One of today’s regional issues is that the Americans create turbulence but do not have the power to control it, and in case of a military attack against Syria this matter will repeat in that country.”
    • “It is possible for some differences to exist in Syria, but if the Americans enter this country, the oath of the Syrians' fraternity will unite them, and from this, many issues will be created for the Americans.” 
  • Head of the Expediency Discernment Council Ayatollah Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani announced his support of Syria and Lebanon after the release of an audio tape in which he blamed Syrian President Bashar Assad for using chemical weapons:
  • President Hassan Rouhani appointed former MP and Reformist era official Hojjat al-Eslam Majid Ansari to the Presidential Parliamentary Affairs Deputy post.
  • Head of the Assembly of Experts Ayatollah Mohammad Reza Mahdavi Kani said, “[O]ur congratulations and requests to [President Rouhani] is conditional and in reality have conditions and terms.” 

Regional Developments

Military and Security

  • Defense Minister IRGC Brig. Gen. Hossein Dehghan discussed the potential American strike on Syria and chemical weapons:
    • “The American armed forces do not currently possess the necessary operational capability to use military forces and create a strategic balance in Syria. Therefore, it is attempting to rebuild the collapsed terrorists’ morale and weaken the operational power of the Syrian Armed Forces with limited attacks and return operational balance to the benefit of the takfiri opposition.”
    • “Certainly, the strengthening and support of terrorists will be followed by their viral expansion in all political arenas and [will have] negative and unpredictable effects on global security.”
    • “The September 11th event was the least expensive cost paid by the American people in the framework of pursuing the destructive policies of their rulers.”
    • “The threat of a military attack over the excuse of chemical weapons being used in Syria is introduced when this country practically created the circumstances for conducting chemical attacks in Syria with inattention regarding Iran’s warning eight months ago about the entrance of a Sarin gas shipment to Syria.”
    • “Deferring to Congress to issue permission for a military attack against Syria demonstrates that the rulers of this country, who are placed under the pressure of Zionist lobbyists to attack Syria, are seeking to transfer the negative weight and widespread expenses of this decision to the rest of America's decision-making institutions.”
    • “Spreading the seeds of warmongering and violence never lead to the germination of the seedlings of peace and stable security.” 
  • IRGC Deputy Commander Brig. Gen. Hossein Salami discussed Syria at the "Syria: Bastion of Resistance Conference" in Iran:
    • “We are on the verge of a strategic turning point for this region’s destiny and, in a sense, in the world of Islam”
    • “What we are witnessing today is the result of compressed defeats of America and its Western and regional allies and is the continuance of the strategy of the previous three decades.”
    • “Naturally, the region that became known as the Middle East or the world of Islam, and in more accurate literature as Western Asia, possesses four key issues. The strategy of the Dominant System and especially America has formed around the axis of these four matters and is currently in effect.”
    • “These four matters are Islam, energy, geopolitics and Zionist regime security, or in total, the security of systems united with America and dependent on it in the Islamic World.”
    • “The reflection of these defeats caused America’s attempt to be established in the center of Islamic resistance, meaning Syria.”
    • “Syria is a country that, as the main base of Resistance, has been placed in danger of security, political and military invasions. Of course the resistance of the Syrian people, Army and system during the past three years is commendable.”
    • “We tell strategic decision-makers and national security staff in America and countries and governments that have decided to aid them in the future potential invasion that this game is very dangerous. The solution to surpass the Syrian crisis is not military and the Zionist regime must reconsider in its security formulas.”
    • “In the two weeks that it has allowed itself, America should know that war activates energies and spreads the spirit of jihad among Muslims.”
  • Former IRGC Navy Commander Brig. Gen. Hossein Alaei attended a funeral ceremony alongside prominent Reformist figures and said, “Yes, I was [President Rouhani’s first choice for Defense Minister]” but did not provide an explanation on why Rouhani did not appoint him. 
  • Senior Advisor to the Chief of the Armed Forces General Staff IRGC Brig. Gen. Mohammad Bagher Zadeh criticized Western chemical weapons support of Saddam Hussein and discussed chemical weapons in Syria:
    • “During the Imposed War [Iran-Iraq War], the matter of chemical weapons usage by the Iraqi Ba’athist regime was announced to the international community many times. Afterwards, United Nations' experts traveled to operational areas to investigate the truth, and after sampling and multiple tests, chemical weapons usage by the Iraqi Ba’athis regime against Iranian warriors and citizens was proven.  Unfortunately, with the interference and penetrations of the Americans, French, English, Germans and Saddam’s other allies, the Saddam regime was never explicitly condemned, and the message of this was the increased boldness of the Saddam regime and widespread chemical weapons usage in the Halabcheh and Sardasht catastrophes.”
    • “With attention to present circumstances, Syrian officials assured the Islamic Republic of Iran, Russia and China that ‘they have not used any sort of [such] weapons.’ But American officials and their Western allies, who are accused of supplying and using chemical and unconventional weapons, are continuously seeking to misguide public opinion and prevent the revelation of behind-the-curtain truths of chemical weapons usage by terrorist and takfiri groups in a media [campaign].”
    • “Currently, numerous intelligence and news [organizations] inside [Syria] and, even some neighboring countries, [indicate] that terrorists and takfiri groups used chemical weapons against the Syrian Army and innocent people. [We] witnessed the transfer of two capsules containing Sarin gas from an Arab country to Turkey and measures that took place inside Turkey.”
  • IRGC Ashura Brigade Commander Brig. Gen. 2C Ali Akbar Pour Jamshidian stated, “The solution to all problems is the spreading of Basiji culture and thought….Our salvation is obedience to the velayat-e faghih.” 

Economy

Photo of the Day

  • IRGC Deputy Commander Brig. Gen. Hossein Salami addresses the "Syria: Bastion of Resistance" conference.