Breaking News: Is Exposure of a Direct Iranian Plot to Launch Terror Attacks in Washington DC A Turning Point?
By Barry Rubin
It should be, but will it be?Continue reading Breaking News: Is Exposure of a Direct Iranian Plot to Launch Terror Attacks in Washington DC A Turning Point?
ABC News has broken a story about the disruption of a major Iran-backed terrorist plot to stage an attack on U.S. soil. According to U.S. officials, the plan was to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to the United States and to attack the Saudi and Israeli embassies in Washington D.C. Parallel attacks were planned for these two countries’ embassies in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
The case is still being developed, and it isn’t clear whether the origin of this plot goes back to Tehran. According to ABC’s sources, Manssor Arbabsiar — an Iranian American living in Texas — approached an informant for the Drug Enforcement Administration, thinking he was speaking with a member of a Mexican drug gang for help in the proposed attacks. He said he was acting on behalf of a cousin, Gholam Shakuri, who might be a Revolutionary Guard official involved in terrorist operations.
He offered $1.5 million for the killing, with a $100,000 down payment in two installments being paid by Arbabsiar while on a visit to Iran.
These two men have been charged with conspiracy to kill, among other charges. Arbabsiar, who is now cooperating with the prosecution, also offered to provide opium in large quantities for the Mexican drug cartels. Apparently, the FBI has a lot of evidence, including recordings of meetings and telephone calls with Arbabsiar.
Let’s assume that this story is accurate.
Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal. His latest books are The Israel-Arab Reader (seventh edition), The Long War for Freedom: The Arab Struggle for Democracy in the Middle East (Wiley), and The Truth About Syria (Palgrave-Macmillan). His latest book is Israel: An Introduction, to be published by Yale University Press in January 2012. You can read more of Barry Rubin's posts at Rubin Reports, and now on his new blog, Rubin Reports, on Pajamas Media
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