Ayatollah tough talk

By Doug Hagmann

10 February 2010: It was at 2:00 p.m. Tehran time on February 11, 1979 when Islamic “revolutionaries” first entered and took over the Iranian palaces, government buildings, and television and radio stations once under the control of the Shah of Iran. This Thursday marks the 31st anniversary of the end stage collapse of the Shah dynasty and the installation of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini as Iran’s top Muslim theocratic ruler.  On Thursday, they will celebrate “Islamic Revolution’s Victory Day”, a national holiday by holding state sponsored demonstrations in every city within the country.

Within the last few years, there has been a lot of “tough talk” coming out of Iran, mostly from President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. To the majority of spectators in the West, Ahmadinejad represents the most visible icon and tangible symbol of Iranian power. A cagey madman with apocalyptic visions and rants calling for the annihilation of Israel and the destruction of the United States, threats from Iran appear so common, many people don’t pay much attention to them anymore.

That currently seems to be the case within the Western media regarding the most recent threat originating from the Islamic Republic of Iran. The difference this time, however, is who is making the threat. It’s not from Ahmadinejad, but from the true ruling authority in Iran, Ali Khamenei, the “World Shia Leader,” the supreme leader of the Islamic republic and Iran’s commander-in-chief.  Specifically, he has issued the following statement while addressing a group of Iranian air force personnel:

“The Iranian nation, with its unity and God’s grace, will deliver a punch that will stun the world powers on the 22nd of Bahman (11 February 2010).”

One alternate translation of the same message states:  “The Iranian nation, with its unity and God’s grace, will punch the arrogance (Western powers) on the 22nd of Bahman (February 11) in a way that will leave them stunned,”

As noted during my appearance on Coast to Coast AM with George Noory, the message is interesting not only because of its content, but because it comes directly from Ali Khamenei and not  Ahmadinejad. It was also delivered in a military venue to a military audience at a time when Iran has been announcing many technical and military advances. Just several days before, Iran launched an indigenously manufactured Omid (Hope) satellite into a 55 degree inclined low earth orbit, as detailed by Northeast Intelligence Network Military Affairs expert Sean Osborne.

In consideration of the timing of the launch and the orbit of the “satellite,” which is more consistent with their potential ICBM capabilities, a reasonable question to ask is whether the launch (and de-orbiting) of that rocket might be related?

In any event, the rhetoric from Iran is increasing, especially the provocative announcement that they will begin to increase uranium by 20% despite the sanctions placed against them. One might ask that by taking out Saddam and removing the threat of Iraq, might we have actually facilitated Iran’s ambitions and assisted them by altering the dynamics of the region? Regarding the threat spoken by Khamenei, it could be a case of mere bravado despite its apparent specificity. Even so, it appears that events in Iran are accelerating, along with the threats.  The question is whether anyone within this administration is listening.

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Shout it
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter