Dear Iran: “Of course you know, this means war!” — Updated

Posted by: Phineas on October 12, 2011 at 2:01 pm

**Posted by Phineas

Or, it would, if we had an administration with the spine of a Warner Bros. cartoon character.

ABC broke the news yesterday of an Iranian assassination plot foiled by the FBI and the DEA:

The new case, called Operation Red Coalition, began in May when an Iranian-American from Corpus Christi, Texas, approached a DEA informant seeking the help of a Mexican drug cartel to assassinate the Saudi ambassador, according to counter-terrorism officials.

The Iranian-American thought he was dealing with a member of the feared Zetas Mexican drug organization, according to agents.

The DEA office in Houston brought in FBI agents as the international terror implications of the case became apparent.

The Iranian-American, identified by federal officials as Manssor Arbabsiar, 56, reportedly claimed he was being “directed by high-ranking members of the Iranian government,” including a cousin who was “a member of the Iranian army but did not wear a uniform,” according to a person briefed on the details of the case.

Arbabsiar and a second man, Gohlam Shakuri, an Iranian official, were named in a five-count criminal complaint filed Tuesday afternoon in federal court in New York. They were charged with conspiracy to kill a foreign official and conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction, a bomb, among other counts. Shakuri is still at large in Iran, Holder said.

Holder identified Shakuri as an Iran-based member of the Quds force, a much feared special unit in Iran’s Revolutionary Guard. The Treasury sanctions named several other members of the Iranian Quds force as well.

Arbabsiar, a naturalized U.S. citizen, expressed “utter disregard for collateral damage” in the planned bomb attacks in Washington, according to officials.

The complaint describes a conversation in which Arbabsiar was allegedly directing the informant to kill the Saudi ambassador and said the assassination could take place at a restaurant. When the informant feigned concern about Americans who also eat at the restaurant, Arbabsiar said he preferred if bystanders weren’t killed but, “Sometimes, you know, you have no choice, is that right?”

BTW, that same restaurant is known to be frequented by US senators. But, hey, sometimes “you have no choice.” Argentina was also discussed as a target, a country Iran has attacked before in their desire to kill Jews.

There’s no doubt this is a casus belli — “a cause of war.” The Iranian government has been caught red-handed organizing a terrorist operation on US soil, an operation that would not only have killed foreigners under our protection but, very likely, American citizens. And the flippant dismissal of the prospect of killing government officials makes this an attack on our government, too. While there’s no direct evidence that Khamenei or Ahmadinejad knew about this in advance, well… yeah, right. Their prime foreign covert operations agency, the Quds Force, plans an attack on the territory of the Great Satan (that’s us), and the Big Nuts in the Iranian fruitcake don’t know about it?

Like I said, “yeah, right.”

But, don’t worry, the Obama Administration is not planning any military retaliation, true to its “September 10th” values:

That a foreign government would plot to kill a foreign leader on American soil could be seen as an act of war, but Obama administration officials say the path the U.S. government will purse will align with American interests – and a military response and possible armed conflict with a third Muslim nation would not be part of that. (Though, it should be noted, the official White House position is “no option is off the table.”)

This afternoon the Treasury Department announced further sanctions against Iran, and in coming days diplomats at the United Nations and elsewhere will discuss further ways to isolate Iran, while American officials will spread far and wide throughout the region that the Iranian government was planning to kill an Arab leader.

In other words, we’re going to treat this as a law-enforcement matter, lay down sanctions, and run around telling the Arabs what they already know: that the mullahs are a bunch of dangerous psychos.

That’ll have Tehran quaking in its boots. Probably from laughing at us.

It may seem odd for me to quote Osama bin Laden, but one thing he said was very true, at least as far as life in the Muslim world goes:

“When people see a strong horse and a weak horse, by nature they will like the strong horse.”

This is us playing the weak horse, whining when someone uses our land to carry out terror attacks. Other dictators around the world (and the people who have to live under or near them) will see this and act accordingly, as Iraq is now doing.

Let’s be honest: Iran has been at war with us since 1979, but we’ve failed to recognize this and act accordingly. Even a president as great as Reagan had a blind spot when it came to Iran and thought he could reach a grand bargain, and Bush failed to take strong action against Syria and Iran when they sponsored the guerrilla war against us in Iraq from 2004-2008. So Obama isn’t the first to naively believe that restraint would be seen as anything other than weakness.

But it’s time for it to stop.

The naked truth is that Iran is killing our soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq. Whether directly or indirectly, it doesn’t matter. Their puppets Hizbullah and Hamas attack our ally, Israel. They are waging war against us (this attack was meant as much to humiliate us as to strike at the Saudis) and have taken that war to our homeland. It’s time to stop wagging our fingers in disapproval and instead punch back — hard.

Lest someone accuse me of being a warmonger, I’m not advocating invading Iran or sinking their navy in retaliation, as emotionally satisfying as that might be. We don’t have to in order to defeat them. As Michael Ledeen has often pointed out (most recently here), the Iranian regime’s grip on power is brittle; their people hate them; they face frequent rebellion and acts of sabotage. If we simply had the moral clarity and political courage to provide the peoples of Iran with the political, propaganda, and logistical support to wage their own struggle against the tyrants, as Reagan did in Poland against the Soviets, we could win without firing a shot.

Instead, we do the diplomatic equivalent of writing them a speeding ticket.

That’s no way to win a war.

CYNICAL THOUGHT: Funny how this news breaks just as AG Holder and the administration are facing close scrutiny for the Gunwalker scandal. There’s no evidence I’ve seen that this plot had gone operational and had to be stopped now. Hmmm….

LINKS: Three mustread articles at The Long War Journal and Threat Matrix. JustOneMinute thinks Holder learned a lesson. Fausta talks about the mounting threat in Latin America from Hizbullah, an Iranian cats-paw. Let’s not forget, the Iranians tried to run this plot through Mexican drug cartels. Still think that border is secure, Mr. President? Power Line notes the “axis of evil” between Iran and Los Zetas. This isn’t just about immigration — this is a national security issue.

UPDATE: Former federal prosecutor (And no fan of Obama and Holder) Andy McCarthy puts my cynical thought to rest — a frame-up makes no sense.

(Crossposted at Public Secrets)

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10 Responses to “Dear Iran: “Of course you know, this means war!” — Updated”


  1. Tex says:

    They never would have even dreamed of doing this crap when Bush was President. We have a very weak President right now, which is what the rest of the world wanted. The world and many in this country have never learned their lesson. A weak American President is more likely to result in a war than with a strong American President.

    The world just doesn’t get it. Its not America that’s the problem. Its all the little tin horn pukes like Ahmadinejad, Kim Jong-il, and all the various Islamic terrorists with delusions of grandeur that are the problem. They don’t share the same values that civilized people share. So don’t expect them to respond to the values that civilized people share. Values like justice, democracy, kindness, empathy, love, etc. are seen as signs of weakness by these pukes. They only understand and respect brute force.

    And hopefully (but doubtful) there’s some brute force fixing to head Iran’s way.

  2. PE says:

    Ultimately they will pursue the do nothing option: take it to the UN.

  3. Phineas says:

    …take it to the UN.

    Where the initials stand for “Ultimate Nothing.” ;)

  4. bob jones says:

    Why would anyone believe this or anything else this administration puts out there. If this is the truth, it would be the first time that Obama, Holder or anyone in their administration has told the truth in years, I’m more than a little skeptical. All it is, is something to distract everyone from all their scandals and open the door for another major global conflict. How many thousands of lies do they have to tell before losing all credibility? Just start with Obama’s campaign lies, most open administration ever, no lobbyists, post all bills online for 72 hours, bring the troops home, close Guantanamo and on and on and on. But I’m sure they are telling the truth this time, yea that’s the ticket.

  5. John says:

    It’s a frame job. Obama gets a real war, and marshall law.

  6. tinmanken says:

    O is pulling a clinton

  7. Shawn says:

    I find it funny that a plan like this was just being planned and we just happen to have an agent in place. This Admin. will stoop to all levels to get what they want and be damed if you get in the way. VOTE out all incumbants.

  8. in_awe says:

    Borrowing from someplace else, this should be known as:

    Fast & Fatwah

  9. Zachriel says:

    Phineas: Let’s be honest: Iran has been at war with us since 1979, but we’ve failed to recognize this and act accordingly.

    Longer than that.

    The U.S. CIA was instrumental in overthrowing the democratically elected government of Iran in 1953 in order to secure control of their oil supplies. In 1979, when the Iranians overthrew the Western-backed authoritarian government, radicals in Iran claimed there were CIA agents operating within the U.S. embassy. Wonder where they would get such a notion.

  10. Dear Sister Toldjah, have you ever seen the Obamination throw a softball?

    He can’t put Iran in it’s place! Just think how embarrassed he’d be, getting a “Nobel Prize” (funny name for that award!) for avoiding conflict, then breaking his back, trying to stoop LOW enough to apologize to the little rat after!