Israel-Hamas: The monster's heart beats in Tehran

 April 11, 2024

This story was originally published by the WND News Center.

Since the onset of the Hamas-Israel conflict on Oct. 7, 2023, the Iranian theocratic regime has steadfastly maintained that Hamas was solely responsible for orchestrating and executing the lethal incursion from Gaza into Israeli territory.

However, in the aftermath of Israel's assault on an Iranian stronghold in Syria, culminating in the deaths of seven commanders from the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps at the nation's consulate in Syria, one faction within the Iranian government, helmed by Haddad Adel, a close confidant to Iran’s supreme leader Ali Khamenei, extolled the most prominent IRGC commander killed in the attack – Mohammad Reza Zahedi.

"The invaluable strategic contributions of martyr Zahedi in forging and fortifying the resistance front, alongside his pivotal role in conceiving and enacting the Al-Aqsa Storm, stand as monumental tributes that shall eternize the silent endeavors of this esteemed commander in the chronicles of valor against the oppressive regime," the faction proclaimed. "The reprehensible assault on the Islamic Republic of Iran's consulate in Damascus unequivocally substantiates this assertion."

It was widely acknowledged that the intricate tunnel networks, sometimes extending 80 meters underground and surpassing in length the Tehran Metro, the city's rapid transit system, along with the drone manufacturing operations, could not have been Hamas' handiwork. Thus, these assertions were clear acceptance of the Iranian regime’s role in the conflict.

Syria acts as the central command for Iran's regional operations. A summit in Syria was convened subsequent to visits to Tehran by Ismail Haniyeh, the leader of Hamas' political bureau, and Ziyad al-Nakhaleh, the head of Islamic Jihad. The summit aimed to actualize the strategies discussed in Tehran during sessions attended by Ali Khamenei, the armed forces' chief, as well as other key regime figures.

State-controlled media outlets report that Khamenei is advocating the prolongation of the conflict, albeit cautiously to avoid adverse repercussions for himself. Consequently, Tehran's foreign ministry has indicated that a forceful reprisal in response to Israel's offensive will be withheld to prevent further escalation of hostilities.

Despite public outcry, Khamenei's stance is for the ongoing devastation of children and civilians in Gaza to persist until, in his view, "the Palestinian question becomes a worldwide concern." His supposed empathy for Palestinian youths contrasts sharply with the deployment of over a million Iranian students to neutralize mine-fields during the fruitless 1980-1988 Iran-Iraq war. Mirroring the tactics of other autocrats, Ali Khamenei consistently seeks to redirect domestic scrutiny towards international dilemmas, effectively masking them. Thus, the atrocities and carnage resulting from the Hamas-Israel war ultimately serve Khamenei's interests.

Emerging almost five decades ago and foisted onto the 21st century by an accident of history, Iran’s radical Islamic clerical regime has become, in many ways, the primary challenge in an already unstable region that has seen many wars in the last century. As such, all subsequent developments inevitably bear its imprint or emerge from its shadow. Western strategies of appeasement seem unrealistic and ill-fated, especially in light of the fact that 600 American troops in Iraq fell victim to roadside bombs planted by the Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.

Rooted in archaic religious dogmas, the Iranian theocracy has, from its inception, failed to meet the populace's economic and cultural needs and demands, resorting to unparalleled oppression and the engendering of crises, wars and terrorism abroad as a distraction from domestic subjugation. This approach underscores the survival tactics of a religious autocracy. Yet, war, as a mechanism for sustenance and redemption, is now starting to backfire, with the recent setback in Syria revealing a trajectory of events increasingly aligning against the regime.

Iran's 2022 uprising, which lasted several months, heralded the regime's impending collapse. Neither direct gunfire nor barbaric torture could quash it. The economic turmoil and myriad factors that historically have ignited regional and national uprisings persist unabated. Yet a far more formidable insurrection looms on the horizon. Khamenei perceives this emerging threat acutely, aware that thousands of resistance cells have been established across Iran under the aegis of the People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran, or MEK, the theocracy's archenemy, poised to propel any revolt towards the regime's downfall.

Trapped in a quagmire of intractable crises encompassing widespread poverty, water scarcity, unemployment and spiraling inflation, Khamenei has – akin to his portrayal of the coronavirus pandemic as a divine boon – now likewise employed the Hamas-Israel war as a bulwark against a resurgence of the 2022 uprising. The unmistakable outcome of the recent legislative elections, with a mere 8% of the electorate participating – forcibly including prisoners and military personnel – reveals Khamenei's lack of a genuine support base, with his belligerence merely serving as a veneer to suppress the Iranian populace's burgeoning dissent.

The root of the regional issue lies in Tehran. Addressing proxy forces sporadically while continuing relations with Iran will not be an effective Western approach to this radical theocracy with near-term nuclear-weapon ambitions. Rather, the West ought to back the Iranian people and their growing resistance movement in pursuit of regime change to establish a republic, secular and democratic.

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